Thursday, January 30, 2014

You Matter So Big!

Throughout my connections with artists, especially those just beginning, a common core belief comes to the surface of conversations: The fact that they struggle with their significance as a person and an artist. Many of us seem to be raised with the voice in our heads that we aren't good enough. My young third graders ask me constantly, "Is it good Mrs. Goodwin,?" and I just smile and wonder where this concept was born, how early, and how it is so ingrained in us as a society.

For years I struggled with the idea that yes, I was given gifts and talents, but at my core, I was insignificant. Who was I to have this opinion? Who did I think I was to boldly share this idea or concept or image? Why do I matter to anyone? These voices of mine came from lots and lots of lies I told myself, poor choices I made in connections, and my repetitive, nut case habit of comparing myself to everyone one and every thing. Terrible way to live really, terrible because those things robbed me of my joy....and they were hard to change. But, I did change them and this way of thinking, that I am wildly significant, is mind blowing.

Now, before you go on thinking, 'arrogant' I need to explain the difference between knowing I am significant and living my life believing I am better than anyone, they are very different in my humble opinion, and they are also what makes so many of us hesitate to embrace our true significance. Living in one's significance means that we acknowledge the gifts we have been given, see their potential in helping make this world a more beautiful place, and choose to share them in some capacity with others.  Living in arrogance means we believe we are far better and superior than others and our tone/behavior is telltale of that. To me, living in arrogance makes one walk straight into the pit of insignificance. 

So, how do we move from believing the lies we tell ourselves into living the truth about how this world needs us, and it does, :) Take one step a day toward owning it.....and that one step can begin with seeing a phrase and saying it everyone morning...I am significant. I matter SO BIG! Just seeing it fights the doubt, fights the voices, and gives strength to our inner spirit. It may feel weird at first, so what. Let it feel weird, but just see it. Then begin to say it. Then begin to notice throughout the day the little things you do that make a difference. Then you might just begin to see those gifts you have shining a bit brighter and when they shine brighter, others notice, especially others who are attracted to YOUR LIGHT! 

I made my poster today so I could see it every morning. I hope you make yours! If you do, share it with us, post a link to it, I wanna help reinforce the fact that YOU, yes YOU totally matter!  

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

From Ice to Angels Art Journal Page

It has been an incredible two days so far as Alabama is pretty much iced and snowed in. This is a view of our back yard and believe it or not, that is ice, not snow. I can't step foot out the door because it is so dangerous to walk on so I simply enjoy this oddity from afar. Thankfully, the respite has given me lots of uninterrupted journaling time! 

My kitchen table had this great view of the light pouring in which cast a turquoise glow on everything, including my sparkly mini tree that I keep up year your just because it makes me happy, :) The color palette of turquoise, orange, red, and dark gave me so much fodder for my new page too! 

These two pages, being part of my Perspective On The Arts Altered Book, are images by  Georges Braque. As a collage artist he is one of my faves and actually was father of the method called Papier collĂ©. 

This type of collage specifically is created by the use of gluing paper, so for these two pages I wanted to embrace paper collage, cubism, and fauvism in celebration of this master painter. 

Although I had my color palette set I chose to be a bit looser with my concept and allow the idea to evolve rather than having a set 'topic' to cover. I loved the image of the lady in red with the scissors as well as the shadow of the gentlemen in black. 

As the page developed I used cubed shaped pieces for the base, went back and forth between the larger images and their importance, and then the idea to dwell on angels came to me after I found a piece of hand painted paper with the colors that I was looking for appeared in my magic, :) Once that piece was found, I knew where the page was going, especially in light of the nightmare experiences many of my Alabama friends had had over the previous 24 hours. 

My belief in angels is near and dear to me as I have had several experiences in my lifetime where nothing but the existence of angels could explain them, and I am grateful for a faith that allows me to share that. This page is one of my favorites, for its message, for its colors, for the entire experience of praying for folks while I made it. Each person interprets journal pages as they need to, and I trust that process. Hope this one speaks to many of you. 

You can also view my pages on my website as well here. 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Seeking Perfection Art Journal Page

It's the Deep South friends and we are hunkered down expecting an ice storm and possibly snow for the first time in 15 years. To my friends up north I say be patient with us, we southern folk are not used to the white stuff and moaning and complaining and rejoicing at the hint of snow is in our second nature. For me, two unexpected days off of work gave me a chance to paint, so I am THRILLED for snowpocalypse! 

Although I had wanted to create a snow inspired art journal page these images on my desk of girls with forlorn and piercing faces kept catching my eye, as if they were calling out to me to speak for them. I had seen several posts this week in my social networking circles about the nightmare of seeking perfection, photoshoping the perfect face, and on and on. It gave me much fodder to consider what exactly we are doing to ourselves in thinking we must look 'artificially beautiful' to be valued. 

I opted to start sketching around the four faces and gave a lot of thought to the fact that this was a church. We worship....through our faith, but sadly we worship the media, fashion, and the quest for that perfect look. I say perfect a lot here because that is what the voices in our head make us run like rats to cheese for doesn't it? As the page evolved I began to like the muted color palette and decided to embrace the neutrals rather than go for rainbow, which is a different path for me. 

My paints flowed, the marks worked, and I left this page knowing I would rather go out into the world au natural than be under the foot of the media circus. Don't get me wrong, I do enjoy getting dolled up on occasion but I am not a slave to feeling as if I must look a certain way to fit it. Makes me wonder how mom's with daughters do it these days.