There’s been some hard stuff out there lately.

I could write about it, and I probably will, but not today.

For today, I was following the splotches I had created.  Bright happy splotches of yellow, red and blue, creating backgrounds for watercolour pictures.  It is quite therapeutic, actually, throwing paint on heavy paper, letting it land where it will.  Fling, splatter, let it settle where it will.

Right now in the midst of my full crazy life, I decided I needed to paint every day.  I have long called it therapy, and for me it is.  For others, therapy might take the form of knitting (looks dangerous to me), or gardening, or getting lost in music.

There is something spiritual about the arts, the art of creating.  It can become meditative for me, as I create and get lost in colour, shapes, and imaginations.

But sometimes we need inspiration.  There is a lot of inspiration out there!  I belong to a number of writer and artist groups who inspire me daily.  Right now I joined a challenge to paint every day, and the prompt for Monday was a dragonfly.

So I looked at my splatters and dots, and saw a bit of a pattern.

sketching a dragonfly

art in process Grace Wulff

Maybe those splotches would work for me.  The grandkids came over and we had a grand art session.  We made more paper backgrounds.  We all drew cactuses.  And I finished my dragonflies as I sat with them.

So what did I learn?

Having fun is always good.  I’m finding that adding colour to my art practices brightens my life.  I’m learning new watercolour techniques, by trial and error.  No, it probably won’t make it to a wall, but it might sit on my fridge for a while.  Because the joy is in the process.

The thoughts went deeper.  We can’t control what is being thrown at us.  We can plan to our hearts content, but life will happen, sometimes messy, sometimes colourful, sometimes happy,  sometimes downright painful.

I am challenged again to find the beautiful in the mess.  Can I see how our Creator has a much bigger picture in mind, one filled with love and colour and a finished product I can’t see.  Because we are in process.

We live in a broken world.  I’ve been long convinced that the antidote to pain and misery is beauty.  There is beauty all around us.  We just have to look.  Go stare at a lake, gaze at the sky, examine the finite intricate beauty of a leaf or flower.   Sometimes we need to bring beauty indoors to where we are.  Flowers on the table, music playing, warm quilts, tapestry, all of these things can enrich our lives.   Sometimes the escape is to a wonderful book which inspires and stretches us and brings us to other worlds.  We get to choose what fills our soul.

Or just take time to splatter some paint!  Laugh with some children!  Perhaps you might find something creative when you create those splatters.  Hope you have a creative, healing week.

Dragonflies from splotches




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