Monday, August 31, 2009

Day 92 of 100

Woohoo! I'm caught up! Here's today's offering, still wet around the edges.

No particular "plan" with this one . . . I just wanted more squiggly colors . . . more of what feels like the landscape of my soul . . . and one of my other favorite color combos called out to me.
Now that I think about it, this piece definitely reflects the joy and gratitude that's overflowing in me today. Emotional life is still hard. Lots of work to do on my aunt's behalf. Complicated relationships. And yet, these "challenges" are invitations to turn to God, more and more and more. And thankfully, I am accepting the invitation, and laying all sense of burden at the feet of my dear Father. What an unspeakable relief.

Day 91 of 100

Still a day behind in posting . . . maybe I'll be able to catch up today. . . I find I really like the results when I take my photos in sunlight. Usually my picture for the day isn't ready until nearly bedtime, so my options are to photograph it under table lamp,
or wait until the bright shiny new day . . .

Here's Day 91's offering, just now photographed on this lovely summer morning:

It's another one that looks like the map of the world of Me . . .
lots of water and sundrenched land masses and luscious green growth.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Day 90 of 100

Here's yesterday's painting.
Had yet one more intensely full day, facing some long-ignored needs in my house, and continuing the work of getting my aunt into another living situation. Found the courage to write what felt like a difficult email and waited for a response.

In that period of waiting, I painted the picture for Day 90. Once again, that inscrutable "writing" came out. Once again, I have no idea what was "said," only that I was left with a sense that deep down, I knew what was good and right. Deep down, I trusted all would be well.

This was yet another time when words failed me, and painting spoke my heart.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Days 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, and 28 of 100

[I just realized that I posted these two "catch-up" days in reverse order. You might want to scroll to the NEXT post and see Days 15-20, and THEN these. ]

Here's the final catch-up of the time I was in California in June. After a week of totally free time, spent in incredibly beautiful locations at Big Sur, I moved to Asilomar, located right on the beach in the middle of the stretch of ocean labeled Big Sur.

My days would be full from dawn until nearly midnight, with Bible study and fellowship with likeminded searchers for Truth. I don't have words to describe the uplift and inspiration that permeated the days and nights.

In my 2nd story room, which overlooked the ocean, I left my paints and pads set up, spread over desk and spare bed. Whenever I was in my room, with a few minutes here and there, I'd pick up a brush and just swoop and sploosh as the Spirit moved me.

Day 21--often I'd go back to that sampler I made from the "kids" colors, and find a color combo that excited me and then play with that.

Day 22--colors crisscrossing themselves.

ay 23--squiggles of oceanblue

Day 24--swirls of inspiration, feelings I couldn't find words big enough for.

Day 25--a mix of straight and curved, and more colors that called out to be next to each other.

Day 26--a rainbow in unexpected colors.

Day 27--this is the day I would travel home. Can't remember right now whether I painted this in CA before I left . . . pretty sure I did. So much swirling inside me, filling my heart and soul and mind with inspiration and hope. But it wasn't too much. It was huge, but not too much.

Day 28--the day I was supposed to be home, but was in Denver instead. Agreed to give up my plane seat so someone else could fly. Earned a night in Denver and a free ticket. The painting was done while my pant legs were still rolled up, damp from my last walk in the ocean. I painted all I felt of my love for the sea; my tears over the broken lines in my life; my joy at seeing many of those lines as crosses--challenges I was called on to face. In doing so with prayer and surrender, I'd been brought so close to my Father, God.
The next day I was home, and that's where my daily blogs picked up, with Day 29.

Days 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, and 20 of 100

Since Final Day 100 is swooping in fast, I thought I'd grab a few moments and catch up by posting the paintings I did while in California. Oddly sweet and tender to re-visit those days, so early in the 100 in 100 Challenge.

I fulfilled a years-long dream by taking my paints to the sea shore and being brave enough to attempt to paint at water's edge.
[For some reason, all my photos turn the image a quarter turn. Usually I would "correct" this so you could see the image as I'd painted it. But something tells me to just leave this batch of paintings turned on their keisters.]

Day 15--Arrived late in Monterey, CA, just as sun was setting. Curled up in my hotel room and played with the teeny little travel set of watercolors I'd just purchased back home.

Day 16--Next day, during a supply run to the local WalMart, I was led down a particular aisle. A "children's" art product caught my eye. HAD to have it. Sat in my rental car, at one of my favorite beach spots (where I saw a sea otter being birthed on Mother's Day several years ago.) Wind was pretty fierce, so I set up shop in the car. Broke open my NEWEST set of watercolors and couldn't contain myself. First project was to try all the colors, just as I'd done the night before with the OTHER, "adult" set of colors. Interesting now to look back and see how the shapes I laid down differed so. Of course, the first one (Day 15) was also done in the sterility of a motel room, while THIS sampler was painted as I breathed in sea air and let wind and wave crash around me. (The 9x9 pad was scarcely big enough to fit in all the joy, despite being substantially bigger than my 5X7 100 pad)

And this is the official Day 16:

Day 17--I actually bit the bullet and "made" myself be brave enough to set up shop ON the beach, i.e. in the sand, full sun overhead, no shelter or "safe place" to hide. Discovered quickly what it's like to manage natural elements in the midst of painting. Had to move swiftly at one point to avoid incoming waves. Quickest way to "save" drippingly wet painting was to toss sand on it. If you could run your hand over today's piece, you'd feel Big Sur sand . . .

Day 18--more painting at water's edge. Much wind today. Was painting in the 100 journal plus two others, letting each dry or set up, rotating between them all. Had to use my body very inventively to keep pages and paints and cups of rinse water upright. Realized at one point that I was in my "birthing" position, one I remembered well from my three home births. I sat upright, legs outspread, knees akimbo, wet and newly birthed paintings safe between my knees.

This painting was one of several I did, using my fingers to swipe off paint that had spilled out of the trays, and then applying it as fingerprints to the page. Then aquamaureenwaterblue splooshed over them.

Day 19--experimented with brush squiggles. Loved the complementary blue and brown.

Day 20--pure ocean colors. The bleeds are from salt water (from the ocean this time, and not my tears!!)
That was the end of my time just at the beach. Tomorow I would pack up and move to the resort ON the beach, where my Bible conference would begin.

Day 89 of 100

Here's yesterday's painting.

Yesterday was one of the most densely packed days I've had in a long time. Many many things to do, and even more to think about and figure out. My salvation was to turn to God and say, "This is Your show. Always has been. Always will be. I trust in You with all my heart, and I will stop trying to 'figure things out' on my own. I realize that dishonors You."

Based on that surrender, which I had to renew repeatedly throughout a day that lasted past midnight, I got so much good accomplished. Wonderful things falling into place for my aunt's upcoming move to a new assisted care facility,
a move that would appear to greatly improve her current situation.

On my own behalf, I was able to finally make some calls to roofers and insurance people, in order to take steps to take care of my home. It's been a struggle to accept living in this house alone, after an unwanted divorce. But I have finally turned some huge corners and am feeling a peace beyond anything I've felt in a long time.

Shared a very sweet few hours with a friend during the last part of the day. Only time to paint was when the friend stepped out of the house to make a quick phone call. I let the paint try to say all I was feeling. Then, just before bed, a few more layers were added. When I saw the finished product in today's bright morning light, I loved the rich fullness of the colors.
Truly it says what I was feeling yesterday.

Blessings to all who read this post. Leave me a note if you desire. I LOVE responses.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Day 88 of 100

This is my second post for today--I'm finally caught up. Oh, wait . . . I still have to post the 15 days from when I was gone in June . . .

Gosh. I can't believe only 12 days remain in this challenge. What a difference this time has made in my painting life and in my "inner" life in general.

Today I just played again.
Wanted some sort of Aztec look. Didn't quite make it. But I love the colors.

Days 86 and 87 of 100

I am blissfully astounded at all I'm reaping from this 100 in 100 challenge . . . and these are only the benefits I am as yet aware of . . . who knows what more lies just beneath the surface?

I have already shared the joy of needing painting in my daily life. I've shared painting my way past the horrid little inner critic muttering, "But is it GOOD enough???"

Day 86--Two days ago I discovered how healing certain color combinations are for me. Can't quite remember what was hard about that day, but I DO remember that I reached for beautiful, soft colors. They antidoted my upset.

I love the way they splooged on the page ("splooge" being a highly technical,
artsy-fartsy term used by REAL artists :))

Then yesterday--Day 87--a sort of disconnected day. I attended a lovely Volunteer Appreciation dinner and show, outdoors on a perfect summer evening. But I was alone, in the midst of many different family connections, and I came home, not sure yet where I fit into this world. It was time to do my 100 for the day, and I just let myself, once again, move instinctively.

The first part was the aquamaureen-colored moons . . . me thinking "big night sky" thoughts. Then, late in the evening, as summer dark settled in, flowers wanted to sprout. The stems--just light airy flicks of the brushtip. Petals, just splooshes with the brush tip (not to be confused with splooges :)). I loved just the blue and green, but something was missing . . . so the teeny dots of hot pink for the flower centers.

So, this odd pairing of images is telling me that I can find my place in the great big world by blooming, right here, right now. And, at the heart of AquaMaureen is luscious hot pink.

Pretty good for a day's work, don't you think????

Monday, August 24, 2009

Days 84 and 85 of 100

Last couple days a little challenging. Still more work inside my home, wrestling through decades of possessions: sorting, selling, giving, trashing. Also sifting through relationships. Lots of prayer.

And through it all, the lovely constant of these daily paintings. So free from "should be" and "ought to." I rarely approach the page with any conscious preconception. I just let my hand pick up what it wants to, whatever brush, maybe the wax crayon, the spit straw. And the hands, directed by the heart, do their thing.

I do so love what has become a nearly effortless, wordless time of expression.

Day 84--couldn't get the photo to do justice to the luscious underwatery colors.

Day 85--after yesterday's swirls, I definitely wanted to try more lines.

All of this, just for the sheer enjoyment of it.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Day 83 of 100

Today hasn't flowed quite as sweetly as yesterday. Still, I worked on the house some. Did some prep for Sunday church. Painted throughout the day.

Is it a mountain range?

A mouthful of dragon teeth?

Mindless doodling?

I'm not sure I know.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Day 82 of 100

Had fun today painting. Actually had fun with the whole day and it's not over yet :)

Finally warm and clear after much rain and non-August type weather. I try to be happy in all kinds of weather, but my insides just sing in summertime.

I love the colors in today's painting--lemon and tangerine and olive . . . .

Swirled on wax resist first and then lemon yellow. Then applied more wax resist on top of yellow and then swirled on the orange . . .I loved the color combo, but the waxy designs looked like boobs . . . .so I swirled on some greeny stuff to break up the bosomy images . . . and ended up really liked THAT color combo. (this second picture isn't really the true colors--the close up changed the exposure or whatever. The first picture is more the actual colors of the painting)

Joy today. Amen.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Day 81 of 100

Today was a test, I think, of my attitudes: could I REALLY be happy, just playing with color? Could I be happy, no matter which direction the painting took?

My heart and soul answered "Yes"--easily--to both questions.
That's a real mark of progress for me.

Amanda of PersistentGreen has made some exquisite marbled paper with purple and green--I saw a journal she covered with one piece of this and it just made my heart squeeze with happy.

So, that's what I wanted to try today. Except I forgot that she had the purple and green side-by-side and not on top of each other :) Consequently, my purple on top the green is pretty dark and sorta muddy . . . oh well, I 'll just try again another day :)

And my freeform random squiggles with the wax crayon left two green buggy eyes in the middle of the painting. The purple parts look sorta like a giant winged bat-like thingie . . .
oh well.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Day 80 of 100

With all the boo-hooing I did today,
my painting amazed me
with its joyful purple and pink swirls.

Maybe deep inside, the part of me that paints without words knew how to hang onto happy.

Good for it. And for me.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Day 79 of 100

Day 79 . . .oh my goodness. That number astounds me.
I can feel the final day, "100 of 100," rushing to meet me. . .

Today's painting was pure joy.

I wanted to play more with the wax resist crayon. I NEEDED to paint a sunrise.

This might sound crazy, but this combination of colors
makes me feel as well-fed, body and soul, as after a Thanksgiving dinner.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Day 74,75,76,77, & 78 of 100

Yep, I've been painting every day. Nope, I obviously slacked off on posting. :)

I realize that many many people host yard sales, like my daughter and son and I just did this past weekend. But I think not everyone goes through their belongings to the degree that I am, in preparation for said sale. 16 years in one house. 35 years of memories from a failed marriage. Scads of supplies for 19 years of homeschooling, no longer needed since all three "children" have now graduated from college.

The physical effort has been, and is, immense. The emotional workout even more intense.

But wow. What a difference.

We are having another sale in three weeks, since we did not finish going through our houses. So likely, the next three weeks of paintings and postings might reflect that activity.

Interesting to, once again, be so tired some days and yet still NEED to do the daily painting. NOT out of obligation, but because this sort of expression has now become part of the fabric of daily life for me.

Day 74--usually all my "one way" designs run left to right. I made myself do something different here. Don't particularly care for the finished product, but the purpose was more to pry myself away from always painting from a certain direction.

Day 75--much softer picture than I usually do. Played with painting very lightly and then light washes . . . I'm pretty sure I prefer the more dramatic ones from other days.

Day 76--Really really like the colors in this, and the bursts at the bottom

Day 77--LOVE the wax resist part and the color bleeds.
I could just wallow in the orange/yellow/red.

Day 78--Was more intentional with the designs with the wax crayon. REally love the colors. The picture doesn't quite capture the turquoisy shades in the original.
This turned out to be one of my favorites so far.