Day 5 of 5-Day Art Challenge

I am sorry that I am just getting around to posting day 5 of the art challenge. I took a day off because my body was screaming for me to take a breather. Afterwards, I simply forgot to post them. While taking that day off, I learned that the 3-piece-per-day requirement, need not have been new work. I did not understand that sooner.

Nevertheless, I am glad that I did not know earlier. Had I known, I would not have challenged myself to create something new each day — three of them. The challenge gave me a great deal of insight into myself, Instead of creating with my heart, I’ve thought with my head, which, as a  result, left untapped, the wealth of creativity that welled within me. Instead of letting go, I was holding back the very thing that I needed to grow as an artist. The strictures that I placed upon myself, kept me from realizing the depths of my creative abilities. The experience not only boosted my confidence and resolve, but demonstrated what I can do when I move beyond my self-imposed limitations. By accepting this 5-day challenge, I grew as an artist, more than I had after months of painting. The very fact that I can refer to myself as an “artist,” is evidence of how much I have grown.

During the challenge, I completed nine pieces of new art, so on the last day, I choose to post some of my favorite pre-existing work. So, I share with you, the last three pieces of the art challenge.  Thank you for taking this journey with me.

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Day 4 of Five-Day Art Challenge

As many of you know, I am participating in a five-day art challenge. The goal of the challenge is simply to share our work with other artists.

Today has been the most difficult one for me yet. Yesterday, I learned about the death of a former high school classmate. Given that there have been about four others within the past year, the news affected me deeply.

Today, I woke to weather that matched my mood — dreary. Unlike the last three days, I began the task with little enthusiasm. I found it impossible to get into a rhythm and to let my heart guide my work. As a result, I did not enjoy the process as much, and am not satisfied with the results. As it goes with life in general, I know that there is a morsel of wisdom hidden in today’s experience. Until now, it has escaped me, but it occurs to me that it is less about “doing,” and more about “being.”

Perhaps, I should have heeded my heart’s whispers, and instead of a harried day, chosen one of rest and contemplation. I’ve pushed myself to rise to the art challenge and so far, I’ve had fun doing it. Today, not so much.

I think that our need for a “mental health” day is, less a weakness or an ill-conceived reason to slack off, but an act of love and respect for our own physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health and well-being. In my case, I wanted to complete the challenge so badly that I allowed it to outweigh my need for a slower pace. In hindsight, I should have respected my true feelings and let go of the self-imposed expectations.

The lesson is that if we ignore our genuine thoughts and feelings, all that we do and are, will undoubtedly suffer the consequences. The real challenge is to surrender to what is and honor it. Today, I did not choose wisely.

In spite of.the end result, here are my three pieces for Day 4:

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Day 3 of 5-Day Art Challenge

Exhausted, but triumphant. Those words best describe my feelings, on this the third day of the challenge. I’d completed two pieces and was working on the third when I received some very sad news. The news took the wind out of my sail and I had to stop for the day. So, the third piece is a portrait (from my imagination) commissioned by my sister for a friend. I love to draw faces, but with only 1 1/2 years of experience, I have a way to go. Anyway, she was my first commission, so I added her as my third. (For those of you who weren’t here for days one and two, go here and here.) And now, I present to you, my art work for Day 3:

 

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