I am back to share with you my progress in the Creatively Fit Coaching Course I am currently undertaking, which was created and is taught by the wonderful, Whitney Freya. Painting Made Easy (PME) is the next module of the course and it is awesome! (You can go here, to recap on the first module, ‘Meet Your Artist Within’ (MYAW)!)
Below, is a run down on PME from my joyful experience with it at the canvas (the canvas that is a reflection of you/your life)! What do we mean by ‘the canvas that is your life’, as Whitney says?
If you can visualise the canvas or whats laid out/painted out onto the canvas as a hologram or crystal ball of your current life and preferred future…where you live, how you interact, how you treat yourself, how you are thinking. You then get to/can, apply paint or wipe away bits with a wet cloth etc…those things that don’t serve you in that picture. The canvas that is your life. The canvas is a reflection of you…your personality, your ego, the way you think, your inner voice and the way it speaks to you, how it makes you have that internal dialogue about people and interactions in your life, how you make decisions, your core beliefs, your fixed beliefs, your assumptions about life, your spiritual beliefs, your mind, your spirit, your soul…all of you. You get to dip your paintbrush onto the canvas and move all of that inner stuff around; observe it, tweak it and change it or appreciate what is already there. How freakin cool is that!?
Its a leap in cognitive awareness. It requires the synapsing of the left and right brain…integrating them. This is going on all the while that we are immersed in the fun of creating art on a canvas with paint, allowing us to play with that landscape that is us! Later, our subconscious reveals certain things/gifts, to us, that we get to mull over and integrate. Very profound shifts occur without us really realising it.
So like MYAW, the Creatively Fit PME process is just not your regular art technique teaching class. It is SO SO much more!
You really have to experience PME to fully appreciate what it can do for you, however I will do my best to describe the process a little more…
You will remember from ‘MYAW’, that using art as an every day practice, brings you into the present and more grounded. It enables you to exercise your often dormant, right brain hemisphere; which is where you gain access to your creative, intuitive and infinite mind. At the same time, it gives you a break from operating out of your reflexive, ego-based left brain hemisphere; which is all concerned with the past, the future, fear, worry, logic. And it is where that pesky inner critic voice resides. It is SO nice to get a break from that thought voice!
In the process of art making, we derive feelings of relaxation, peace, self awareness; as well as creative answers to everyday problems of ‘stuckness’. Sounds wonderful doesn’t it! The aim is to use art making to help us integrate both the flexibility between, and the strength of operating out of both left and right brain hemispheres, when the relevant situation calls for it, in our day to day lives. Our brain/integrated mind then becomes our best tool to help us create the lives that we want.
So as well as with an ongoing intention to build and continue with a creative practice through art journaling; PME can progress you further in self exploration and self awareness, as well as provide you with a myriad of positive side effects/benefits, such as relaxation to simple enjoyment. Although we are armed with a paint brush, paint and a canvas, and we do progress through basic techniques such as colour mixing, blending and simple brush strokes; the over arching theme behind the process is the biggest pay off. As mentioned earlier, just for a moment, imagine that the canvas in front of you is really just a mirror, reflecting back to you, your life, the way you think, the way you interact with those around you, you. When you go through various stages and progress through the painting process; thoughts, feelings, inspirations, imaginings and ah-ha’s can be reflected back from the canvas and guide you into making amazing changes in you, your life and relationships. It is a very subtle, yet profound experience and it is the ultimate gift, on top of the gift that keeps on giving…art. There is much excavating opportunity of one’s own spirit and soul…if that is what calls to you. It maybe, that a shift in rigid thinking is the reward, with flow on, positive effects in real life. It might be that the social connection with others, whilst immersed in a fun and relaxing process, calls to you. The possibilities are truly endless!
I had intended to keep this shorter than the last Creatively Fit Coaching Course post; however, my enthusiasm for this process/course will just not allow that to happen! 🙂
On to explaining the PME process, as I experienced it…
First. Here is a pretty picture to break up all of these words ~
At the very top of the page you will see my youngest son with a paint palette next to mine. He loved doing this with me…the possibilities with using this approach with kids is huge! More on that in a future post I think!
So this is where we learn’t to mix the primary colours of red, yellow and blue, to create secondary colours, orange, purple and green. Noticing various shades from using complimentary opposite colours on the colour wheel for contrast, as well as mixing colours to create browns and adding white to create endless colour tones. It is SO much fun!
The photo above, shows my 3 canvases, side by side, after the colour mixing on the palette was brushed onto the canvas surfaces. Various mark making went down, as I became lost in the process of mixing colours and exploring my personal paint palette preferences! This was considered the 1st layer on the canvas.
Next, we created a second layer by creating an outline of a meaningful symbol or shape, using black paint and taking care to bring the shape over to the edges of the canvas to create good composition; as well as to enable blocking in of colour in certain areas around the image. I chose the spider as it symbolises the artist and the ability to weave infinite possibilities in art making. I realised as I painted this, that I also wanted to confront my fear of spiders and that my colour choice of soft pinks reflects my need to connect with my feminine soft side as I am constantly surrounded by 4 loud, energetic males in my home!
The third layer involved painting over the colours or marks we didn’t like so much and replacing it with colours we did like. (Unfortunately, I didn’t snap a pic of it). Dry brushing paint on from the edges lightly towards the centre with our preferred colour palette choice, whilst taking care to leave some of the previous layers underneath to peak through; thereby providing depth to the painting.
The fourth and final layer required adding shading and highlights to complete the piece.
This painting will remain in my art studio, to help guide me to reconnect with my artist within and to be constantly reminded of all the possibilities!
At this point, I would love to direct you to a fellow CF coach in training, who has written her own blog post about her experience with learning the PME process also. I love how clearly Cosima details the ‘Canvas that is your life’ extrapolation; from the steps involved in the painting process. You can read her post here.
So as you can see, the emphasis is on the process rather than on the end product…the artwork. It is ALL about the journey, however with the structured approach of PME, you will also come to the end of the process with a finished painting you will love, because it is packed FULL of meaning!
Below are some other paintings I also did as part of the PME process. The triple spiral, which is my sacred symbol and is packed full of meaning for me; as well a great reminder to balance Mind, Body Spirit and embrace the various stages of life…Child, Mother, Crone. The other image is of the ‘Winged Dogs’; another sacred symbol packed full of personal meaning and imagery for me.
So as you can tell, I am TOTALLY in love with this painting process and the underlying impact it can have on us and our lives. I have found that when I intentionally create what I want on the canvas, it is easier to do the same in the art that is my life! Furthermore, that the act of painting and creating brings me back to my inner child and that free place of play. I crave it.
Remember that…anyone can learn to paint. I would love to show you how. If you would like to know more about becoming Creatively Fit, feel free to use the contact tab above and send me a short message and I’ll get back to you; or click here for more info.