Creative, a photograph of life

“The truly creative mind in any field is no more than this: A human creature born abnormally, inhumanly sensitive. To him… a touch is a blow, a sound is a noise, a misfortune is a tragedy, a joy is an ecstasy, a friend is a lover, a lover is a god, and failure is death. Add to this cruelly delicate organism the overpowering necessity to create, create, create — so that
without the creating of music or poetry or books or buildings or something of meaning, his very breath is cut off from him. He must create, must pour out creation. By some strange, unknown, inward urgency he is not really alive unless he is creating.”
― Pearl S. Buck

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Woman Guest, A Watercolor Muse

“This being human is a guest house,
Every morning a new arrival….

Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.”

Rumi – The Guest House

Rumi’s poem, The Guest House, is one of my favorites of his.  For many years I would read it to my yoga students while they rested in Sivasana.  This morning, after a cold, wet and windy brisk walk I settled inside of my warm studio to paint. Today my studio also became my Guest House. You see, I woke this morning with a lump in my throat; a lump of expression and emotion that as it always is with me, would only be sated by means of writing, painting or drawing. Otherwise that lump only grows until I metaphorically choke on it, unable to breathe.

When I first began painting the piece below I knew it would be a lesson; an experimental work.  I’m trying some new techniques with watercolor and synthetic paper and had this idea that I would make a black and white watercolor look almost like one of my charcoals.  The piece morphed at least a dozen times and in the end, looked nothing like what I intended it to be.  This happens all the time, but today – today my emotions morphed right along with my painting.  I had so many guests appear at the door of my mind, so many emotions, that I could scarcely keep up with all of them.  I’d stop for a cup of tea or a glass of wine and sit on the stool in front of my easel and stare at her – the painting.

In the end I was grateful for each of my guests as they were able to appear within each stroke and I worked some stored up stress out from my insides.  Also with my lump now gone from my throat I can breathe once more and although frustrating, I’ve decided to continue my self-study on watercolor techniques……and emotions.

Woman Guest - Jennifer Allison
Woman Guest – Jennifer Allison