So, tomorrow I turn 50. The reason I'm telling you is because so much has happened between 40 and 50 that I never thought possible.
Right before I turned 40, we moved from Albuquerque to Savannah and everything was in flux. I had left a career in Albuquerque and had no idea what I was to do with myself. I just knew that my happiness was not to be found in this particular career or in any "normal" job.
At that time I wasn't very good at just being. And I was even worse at being in that undefined space of not knowing what was next for me in terms what I'd be doing.
I now know that that is one of the best spaces to be in. We all like to get from point A to point B and arrive at Point B quickly, but the real magic happens in the in between stage, in that open space between "what was" and "what will be." That's when everything can change for the better, when we can become something more, something new.
It was in this space where I started painting. I was 43 and had never before wanted to paint because I knew that I didn't have the talent. It was not even on my radar until...I had this undefined (uncomfortable) space in my life.
Here's what I learned from that new beginning. In life it's often not about living our obvious talents and doing what we've always done. The biggest joy is sometimes found on a path we didn't even know existed. Developing a talent that was completely hidden. Allowing something new and unknown into our lives.
Now at 50 (well, tomorrow) my life is only about the joy of it, however that comes to me. Be it through art, family, knitting, nature, our pets, cooking, eating, what have you. It's about the joy of it, pure and simple! And I wish the same for you!
Last week, I didn't do a whole lot of painting. Daniel was out of town and I just took it easy. You'd think I'd be in my studio all the time, but I felt more inspired to read, knit, crochet and watch some movies.
I did finish this rather large painting which is going to my sister's when we visit this summer. It was quite a challenge for me and I love, love, love how it turned out! The colors and the feel of it.
The canvas below was moving in a direction I didn't like, so I gave it a layer of gesso for a new start, while keeping some of the previous layers peeking through. It'll add to the texture of the painting once it's finished. I have no clue yet where this is heading.
We've had some days of big rain (Tropical Storm Colin came right through here) and then much sunshine. Flowers are blooming in abundance and I love bringing some of them inside.
The other day, I was lucky enough to find a perfect snake skin in our back yard. Isn't it gorgeous? I am keeping it for nature decoration in our house. We have quite of bit of that - dead bugs, animal skulls we've found, sand dollars, etc. This will fit right in!
We are always on the lookout for interesting bugs and this spider fits the bill. It was tiny, but look at that color! Amazing!
And here is one of the fascinating Golden Silk Orb Weaver spiders. A couple of years back I blogged about a female I watched all through the summer (click here). Here is a new female and she's going to be fun to observe. Right now, she's only about an inch in length (including the legs), but by summer's end she'll be about 6 to 7 inches long, while the males are tiny! Fascinating creature!
And this last was a lucky shot while a swallowtail butterfly was busy drinking from our bougainvillea. Isn't it gorgeous? Actually the colors are inspiring a painting...
Dear friends, over a month has passed and I have not posted. I've also not painted a whole lot - life has been busy with other things. Good things. Spring time. Great weather. Being outside. Friends visiting. A sudden need to read a lot and devouring several books. But still, art happened.
And I managed to record and edit a little video of me painting the horse. I hope you enjoy it. And I hope to do more of them in the future.
And then I've been working on several bigger canvases that are going much slower. And the process is so different. I'm enjoying the color mixing and painting in a more painterly style.
And faces are coming up again. Mixed with the animals. We'll see where that goes... (These are both details of larger canvases.)
And remember this sweet guy? Well, he is going to be published in a art book on koalas in Australia. Of course, it'll be a little while before the book is actually available, but I'm excited already. A part of the proceeds will go to support the Australian Koala Foundation. I like that!
Do you remember when my blog was called "Metamorphosis?" It's still happening for me. I am becoming more and more of the "real" me as I shed old programming and fears, as I paint more and allow parts of me to shine that I've previously kept hidden. Much of that I have done to make life easier for me. Life is so much simpler when I pretend to be like everyone else. Truth is I am not like most people. I've always been different and I'm starting to be ok with that. They say that art heals - so very true! I'll definitely be writing more about this in the time to come.
But in the meantime, lots of love from my heart to yours!
Linking to the ever fabulous Paint Party Friday, where a whole lot of amazing art happens every week!