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I’m taking a painting class. That’s hard to admit. I’ve been painting for decades. But I’ve hit a wall. It’s not a new wall. It’s a wall that’s been around a long time. Usually I skirt it. Or ignore it and hope it goes away. Or I try to paint my way around it. But, lately I’ve been doing a lot of meditating and have come upon some life-changing realizations about who I am NOW , which of course shed clarifying light upon past misconceptions about the “who I am”s of past “NOW”s. So it is that I found myself at the wall. First, I hit it….I figuratively pounded on it for a while and then had a good cry over it’s impenetrability. Over it’s existence, and it’s insistence. Then I decided to just be with it for a while. And that’s when I signed up for the painting class.


It’s a fabulous class, taught by a wonderful woman who knows painting, knows color, knows process. And her methods are completely different than those I’ve used for years. The wall got bigger on the first day of class. But I stayed with it. And today was the second class. And I stayed at the wall. And I painted.


So, the wall isn’t so scary anymore, learning to paint using a new process, feeling like a kindergartener, THAT is scary. But it’s EGO scary. That’s all. I can handle that. The wall, it turns out was Fear that I don’t know what I’m doing. Taking the class, I admit that on some level, I don’t. Admitting what the Fear is generally makes it shrink. Also, really, are any of us ever done? Do I really want to say, “I’m an artist and I’ve learned all I need to learn, now I’m just going to paint (or collage) along on my merry way.” How dull I would become. How dull I became there at that wall. Pretending it didn’t exist. Pretending knowing everything was everything.


I have MUCH to learn… and how like LIFE it feels, climbing over that wall; and leaving it in the past. 


Next post:  a little something about starting over that I learned from making fiber collages...

I really did finish this latest prayer flag by May 1st. What I DIDN't do was post the photos. I am still a bit slow to post sometimes. Doing a lot of work around that.... that visibility thing. I'm getting there. But for now I am here. In process. Also, I am working on creating a better process for getting photos of my works as I make them, since it's not practical to go to a professional with each individual piece.


So, here is the "Faith" flag from the series "The Three Graces."


Faith: first in series "The Three Graces"

20 x 20 inches

Fiber collage with freestyle machine stitching


Detail of "Faith"


Presently I am working on "Hope" for the same series. I realize I need to blog more about my process in making these. It really has been a powerful experience and continues to teach me, heal me and enrich my life. Tomorrow, I will explain more...


Last night I attended a gathering of about 25 woment in a home for some time with Rashani Rea. I suggest you "Google" her. She's lived an amazing life. She is the most present person I've ever encountered. It was an amazing evening.


We took over 3 hours to introduce ourselves. Here's why: each person had selected a card with one of Rashani's collage images and a quote on it. As each introduced herself, then would read the card aloud and tell how the quote related to her life. We each in our own ways were guided deep within to touch the essence of what the quote touched. It was remarkable and powerful and beautiful.


My card was one of the simpler ones. "It is in loving that we become gentle." Love has been a theme for the past year and a half just as surely as has Fear. At this time in my life, I feel as if looking at Fear closely has and continues to peel away at illusions about myself (last week I experienced a breakthrough that answered life trauma dating back to my toddler days) and about life. If I am really present, truly here, now, me,... I'd say love is all I am have feel know. 


I am exploring Trust these days...

Should finish this tomorrow. I don't think I've ever posted a photo of a prayer flag in process. It has a thin film over it at this stage and not all of the stitching is finished; but I took this photo to send to my husband today and thought the little caterpillar was just sweet enough to introduce to you all tonight. 

"Faith" on the sewing machine. First in the series "The three Graces: Faith Hope and Charity."

Installed by the artist for her studio on 4/27/15. Looks pretty good for a freebie that spent over a decade in a shed! And NO leaks! Feeling good....

Today I put in a sink. Then I took it all apart again. Pedestal sink (if you've ever put one in, you'll understand). Apparently, when those experts say "it's important to NOT tighten plastic fittings too tight," they aren't addressing someone with arthritis. The fittings needed to be tighter. BUT, after a mop-up and a few hours to let the plywood floor dry and I'll be heading up there to get that thing back together. I'll have someone double check the junctions. And plenty of rags on hand in case....


This is important to note. I'm putting in the sink in my studio! It's been years of up and down stairs with brushes and buckets. I've always just counted myself VERY fortunate to have the space and enjoyed the exercise. But when I found myself sinking into the mire of self-doubt last week, it occurred to me that taking a risk and doing something I've never done before would be just what I needed to boost myself and, well, I'm getting a sink in the studio as a bonus!

My blog post from the Chair Affair didn't save! Argh... oh well,... here it is!
This is my last photo with the Fear Chair. It was taken April 17th at the Artists Reception for the "Chair Affair" fundraiser for the Portland non-profit, The Community Warehouse. I have since learned that the chair did indeed sell. I didnt realize I would be curious about who bought it or why but I find that I am...

Kind of a delightful thing to think about.


Fair-thee-well-my old companion of 51 days! May your new owner realize the truths you carry and build upon your story!