You guys, I just had a bit of an epiphany!
I’ve been diving into intuitive painting this past week. As a perfectionist control-freak this is HARD and super scary. But I’m doing it, because I feel ready and I want to push myself out of my comfort zone.
I noticed whenever I did art I’d find it difficult to deal with that feeling of ‘not knowing what to do next’. This would lead to a lot of negative feelings, so I devised a way of working where I would plan my paintings in advance with a sketch and a colour palette. With the initial background stage I’m quite free & loose, but once that is done I will sketch something and from there on I pretty much follow a plan. It works quite well for me, I feel comfortable and the process is enjoyable. This is how I usually work.
BUT BUT BUT as you know, I’ve been falling in love with beautiful abstract-y intuitive paintings. I wanted to try that! Talk about an arena where you NEVER know what comes next, because there is no planned outcome at all.
I’m working on 4 paintings at the same time at the moment, and I noticed I was coming up against a lot of this ‘not knowing what to do next’. And I was feeling crappy about it. And I was feeling negative. And I was feeling that maybe this intuitive painting is not for me, maybe I’m just not one for tapping into my intuition, maybe it just doesn’t really ‘flow’ for me the way it does for others.
That’s when I had my moment of clarity… It’s OK not to know what to do next. I am so afraid of the quiet, so afraid of sitting without doing something… actually so afraid of truly connecting with the current moment, especially if that current moment consists of quiet… But the quiet can be listened to, I can be with it, and it will last a little while or a long time AND THAT IS OK.
It’s kind of like when you’re with someone you don’t know very well, and silence feels SO uncomfortable that you feel you need to fill every little gap, and that’s how I’d been approaching my painting. WHOA, major realisation time! Now all of a sudden it’s like I’ve given myself permission to sit with the quiet. So I sat with the quiet… and I felt a new sense of allowance, of peace and of trust.
I urge you, next time you create and you feel uncomfortable or lost, sit with the quiet. (And then come and tell me about it afterwards!)