Living that Art life

I have a very vivid memory of me sprawled out on my uncle’s living room floor, with the sun beaming in, and a colouring pencil in my hand, creating away on a piece of paper. My uncle then asks attentively, “So Meron, what do you want to be when you grow up?” I’m assuming to confirm actions of the joyous but relaxed mood I was in.

“Hmm, either an artist or a doctor”

He then asked which one I would choose if I had no choice but to pick one. I hesitated for a bit, but I confidently said artist. I was about 9 or 10 years old at the time so I was pretty aware about different occupational roles. I always remember that memory because I feel like it’s what I am meant to be. And the more I think about it, the more it resonates with me. Usually the question ‘what do you want to be when you grow up?’ is often ignored in later adult life. But lately, I’ve been trying to listen to what my intuition tells me. I think the reason I said both options of an artist or a doctor, is because I want to help people, but I love art and have received more compliments about it then anything else I do.

And it’s so funny because I literally am drawn towards art therapy as a career change! I love psychology and eventually I want to blend the two worlds – art and psychology – together into a nice little world of my  own.

But that art life though!

I’ve only JUST started exposing my art work on social media and online. I’m so bloody defensive of my work, as predictably by my artistic nature, I’m a sensitive soul. Don’t get me wrong, sensitivity is a great thing to have but if your skin isn’t that thick, it’s painful. Luckily, my skin is growing ever more thicker, which is great but I still have some way to go. There’s so many doubts niggling at you like an itchy nose – ‘But I can’t do this!’, ‘I’m not a real artist’, ‘Who’s going to be interested in what I have to show?’, and the classic ‘I’m not good enough’.  Aye aye aye!

I am good, I am kind, I am enough.

I am good, I am kind, I am enough.

I am good, I am kind, I am enough.

(repeat until less stressed)

…That’s better.

It’s my new mantra thing. It isn’t a permanent solution but it’s a good way to centre my emotions. I know I can do this. Live a life more dedicated to practising art and using it to help others. Essentially that’s my life goal. To help others using art. I’m still not sure how exactly but I think along the art therapy route. One thing is for sure – I just to keep creating, stop the self judgement and do it for me. Not to prove anything or to show off but for me.

And in honour of this post, I’ve featured my latest painting/selfie. What do you think is going on?

Detours can be productive…

12998717_1030547207038311_750388216938473680_n
‘Blended’ 2010, Mixed Media

A delightful discovery whilst roaming the social media fields, a detour actually.

Introducing April Harrison
I really like the energy that she’s used in this painting- peaceful, solemn, warm and humble. What looks like a  mother almost falling asleep due to the hardships of raising two children, is comforting her children as they are enrapped in their mother’s love in her arms. To me she’s using the term ‘blended’ in the way she has used pattern and texture and the relationship between all of them:intimate. They all seem to have their eyes closed as in the way a person would meditate or pray or just embrace the moment for a few seconds. Or it could be they’re all tired. Either way for me, it’s really humbling to see.

 

 

 

L.A. inspiration

The Californian African American Museum (CAAM) recently had an exhibition called Hard Edged: Geometrical Abstraction and Beyond, which was quite successful in my opinion and probably not highly advertised.  There was a mixed media piece by April Bey which used hair relaxer as part of the narrative closely related to Chris Rock’s ‘Good Hair’ Documentary, which I thought was clever and controversial.

picky_head

 

But some of the artists and art work that I took with me (metaphorically speaking) is that by MICHELLE ROBINSON.

moonguardian2a-570x748
‘Moon Guardian 2’, 2015, Acrylic & Gold leaf on Canvas by Michelle Robinson

I love the dialogue of colour, texture and references towards the female form, natural hair and all! It really just emanates a wave of positive and deep, powerful, spiritual energies that really appealing to me. It’s very inspiring as it is a style similar to how I work with paints. I would definitely add it to a collection, if I could afford it….one day 🙂

 

 

Big Magic!

elizabethgilbert-bigmagic

Yes, I admit I live partially in fear and yes its does stop me from doing more amazing things. And Yes I do procrastinate, more than I should.

That’s ‘Step One’ to resolving your issues: admitting you have them. Right?

[Background context] I was massively shy growing up as a child and even still I would take on board too many thoughts about what other people think of me, my actions, my appearance, my identities. Which is why I am drawn to the arts such as painting and writing because it was a safer world than reality. A place that I could escape to express my self with no one looking or judging apart from me!

I’ve always wandered what my purpose in life is and have always been aware of my personal growth questioning the world, contrary to having been absorbed into the recent healing, collective wave of  consciousness.

As it so happens I browsed Amazon and found this beauty! – Elizabeth Gilbert’s Big Magic

–Disclaimer: I haven’t been paid or sponsored to advertise this book—

I just think it’s DOPE. It’s enlightening, humble, witty and very easy to read. Although a point she made in Chapter IV was quite outrageous and disgusting at first. She starts by defining  creative living as…

living a life that is driven more strongly by curiosity than by fear

…and stops the misconception that creativity is just for professional or academic artists (although if you are a visual artist, then that’s great). You  could be a farmer. A builder. A doctor. Or any lifestyle in which you are consistently questioning, making things happen, and not letting fear get in the ratid ass way!

Her chapters are divided into the elements needed, such as ‘Trust’ and ‘Enchantment’ and is full of little anecdotes and living examples of stepping up your game. She has such a casual, conversational style in writing that is neither shallow nor tedious, but just relatable enough so that you really get what she’s saying – I.e. Life is full of paradoxes, and so is creativity. If you embrace courage, playfulness and divinity in your life, and affirm that fear will not take the leading role, big magic WILL happen!

And I agree! 🙂 Here’s to living a creative life and not just burying my creative head in the sand. Argh.

—————

I also have a YouTube video reviewing the book on my channel Art|Tea|Afrika. Enjoy!

—————

Road trip

 

Its’ already that month again!   How time flies!

I think as we humans grow older we are much more aware of time in relation to our lives. Whether it’s being on time for work or planning life goals, or celebrating birthdays and anniversary. And of course the media doesn’t help by trying to sell ‘Age-defying’ beauty products to remind us that time is slipping away – “No, don’t get old, stay young! Buy our product and you’ll rule the world!” Oh media…

But anyway, I digress as I really want remind myself (as the end of the month draws near) to post an entry. My goal is to write an entry at least once a month as my last blog died due to neglect. Not the first time that’s happened.

I’ve read such an inspiring book by Elizabeth Gilbert called ‘Big Magic’ which I would highly recommend buying if you want to be at one with your fears of venturing into a creative life! Awesome.

And funnily enough I’ve recently done a personality test by 16personalities which is SO creepily accurate that it I use it as my GPS.

I’ve continued awareness in my Art therapy classes which again is amazingly fascinating to me personally, and I’m making some good connections with other class peers.

….I really feel that things are mysteriously and magically coming together in a very natural, spontaneous way. As if almost a domino effect has occurred with one event or activity. Almost as if these mysterious events are really ‘signals’ towards my true route in life, and especially career. Again the GPS, the signs, hey I just realised the semantics of my writing are road trip based. Lol. In any case, I feel positive, albeit still a little nervous of my choices in life and I do feel I’m getting to where I want to be.

Until next month!