“Do anything but let it produce joy.” Walt Whitman.
Thank you, Mr. Whitman for pretty much summing up in one short and sweet sentence, the gist of everything I believe, promote, write about and try to live by. (And, I’m sure he would have added, please show up for the joy producing moments.) More and more, as I grow my little company and connect with customers, fellow artists and my peers, I realize that doing my thing, my anything, is always motivated by producing joy. And joy is contagious. Making soup. Baking banana bread. Writing a handwritten thank you note. Reading great books. Mailing catalogues with samples. Painting boots and bridges and bouquets. Meeting a friend for coffee. I try, not always successfully, but I sincerely try every day to produce something with joy.
Today, it’s yellow boots. With polka dots and hydrangeas. No reason, it makes me happy. The behind the behind scenes is this. I was in class, off track, painting something I thought I should paint, in fact, can’t remember what the subject was but it was “off”. I know when something is off when it’s a struggle, not a good, I’m figuring it out as I go kind of struggle, but a this isn’t my voice kind of struggle, put the brush down and reassess. I did. And I realized that the subject wasn’t making me happy. I found an image that did. And it was joyful and easy and flowed right out of me with no purpose whatsoever but somehow shiny yellow boots with hydrangeas popping out of them was just the fix for a rainy February day. Sometimes its that ephemeral. A feeling, a thought, a wisp of inspiration and rather than question, just follow. After approximately hundreds of paintings, thousands of books and a jillion conversations on creativity, I have found this. The river of inspiration is generally flowing in the joy direction. xo
“Yellow Hunters” 11×14″ available at ElizabethW Carmel. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for information.