It is lovely to be back in the studio on a relaxed schedule, free to pursue whatever the muse whispers. Several months ago, I picked up this piece of circular wood and sketched out a concept, but hadn't had a pause to paint it until now. I've painted several girls in circles, and find them to be calm, a bit dreamy and always soothing to paint. One more, larger than all the rest, sending little hearts out into the universe. A little love mojo for the world. :)
After a week hiding in my studio and recovering from travel, I am ready to peek my head out and see what's going on out there. It seems many folks have tucked their heads under their wings recently, and who can blame them? Hibernating is good for the soul. But I recently read an article (I cannot remember where) which recommended perhaps we all need the opposite of hiding right now - the author suggested we need to "crash into other people's lives until we connect." Perhaps the wording was a bit startling, but somehow it resonated. I don't plan to crash, but perhaps to gently bump into other humans and find the common ground in a polarized world.
During my hibernation, I finished Art & Fear. It is now dog-eared and highlighted, underlined and starred. I think I could read it ten times over and get something new with each repetition, so this one will go on my "keep forever" shelf. The last paragraph was the perfect balm for fearful, introverted creatives of all kinds: "In the end it all comes down to this: you have a choice...between giving your work your best shot and risking that it will not make you happy, or not giving it your best shot - and thereby guaranteeing that it will not make you happy. It becomes a choice between certainty and uncertainty. And curiously, uncertainty is the comforting choice." Holy mackerel! I could apply that to everything I do. And now I can set out into the world this week feeling comforted by uncertainty - words I never imagined saying out loud. I am also determined to give things my best shot, even if it is a little (or a lot) scary.