Tonight I went out on a limb. I decided to paint. Which I've done before...to my house. I have never considered myself a painter. At all. I like to look at other people's paintings, & "wish I could do that". That's me. Infused Arts @ LWCC, is an artists community, at my church. I decided [after saying I was gonna for about 2 yrs] to go. So I went in July [for photography]. This month I wasn't sure of.
However, as these photos prove, I went. I really wasn't prepared for my evening. It was fun....
I like the way light plays off the paint...
It was a real internal struggle for me, though. I guess I want everyone around me to think that I'm smart enough to know what I really am not good at. Smart enough to not go & do what I can't do well. Thing is... how am I supposed to know if I'm good at it if I never actually try doing it? Further, I can't expect myself to be a professional "world class" or "world famous" anything without trying it. Practicing it. Honing my skills at it. Wait... I should say that I "shouldn't expect that".... The problem is, that's EXACTLY what I expect. From myself. I only expect perfection. Well... from myself. YOU? I got all the grace in the WORLD for you. Just.... not for me. ...why is that? Beats me. All I know is THAT is something I might just be "The World's Best" at.
After that paragraph, you can imagine how my night started. I began confident... which lasted about 9 nano seconds... & promptly fell off a cliff. Internally: "Why did you think you could do this? This. looks. dumb. Seriously, what ARE you doing? This, is garbage. ..." And on & on it went for a bit. I seriously had to force myself to stay. To keep trying. Is it a masterpiece? I don't know.... I don't care, really. That wasn't the point. The point was to step... into something a bit scary. Something out of the ordinary for me. As I pushed through the negative thoughts racing into my mind, I did what I usually do. I encouraged others. I enjoyed their paintings taking shape. I began to realize that I was one of many who really weren't sure they were "cut out for this". We encouraged each other. As I just kept playing around, dabbling in this paint & that one. I began to force other thoughts. "I like that color.... Mick would like that color.... What if I try this? nope, not liking that. Ok. How about this? -ooooh, I like what she's doing there. Can I make my own version of that happen in my painting?"
Turns out..... the answer was yes. Then one woman came up to me & said: "I like that. I like the hands upraised above the heart. Did you try that? Do you see what I'm talking about?" At first, no. Then...yeah, I do. No, it wasn't planned. Had a great conversation with another gal about how helpful art can be. How therapeutic it can be.
honestly, tonight.... with these people.... was therapy, in the most unusual way.
I really enjoyed this. Especially when I stood up to the inner struggle against myself.
The heart, in the corner, I sign notes to my wife & my Mother with that. I sometimes put it on an envelope as the "postage" on a card I give them. I wanted to paint out of love, kindness, hope..... it never occurred to me that I might be struggling to give myself hope.
It was worth the struggle.
May you feel loved.
and may His grace,
drip from your fingers,