The creation, unfolding, and process of creating art asks for a certain delicacy of space. It’s certain to say that we have all understood harshly the realms of critique, the push of go, the faces as they fall away from the embrace of solitude. This is a life that is asked for often and abandoned more. Listen.
Art is work.
It is uncomfortable. Broken. Stuck in chasms of emotional discourage. The work is the movement it takes to push through. To give birth. To walk through thick bushes with machete dropped and eyes closed, blind to all external light.
One of my favorite things my mom has always been very diligent about is the need for a safe creative/mental space. She’s both an artist and a chemical engineer, which makes for some interesting perspectives on the world at large. She knows the feeling of mental overwhelm, knows to direct the compounded energy into a safe space. When my brother was working toward his engineering degree, she advised him to take a few creative classes in the mix of all the technical crunch. He learned to play guitar, started drawing. The oasis of no-pressure served as balance for an intense curriculum and helped keep him sane.
During our moves and transitions, I’ve had to put so much aside. I look at my spinning wheel like a dog that hasn’t been on a walk, shake my head and sigh while responsibility and the ever-present something-else grabs a toehold first. For a long time, I kept trying to pick back up where I left off. Like, if I could just get back to spinning yarn or if I could just sit my ass down at the sewing machine, maybe I could pick up the pieces and re-work the puzzle.
Art doesn’t work like that.
The puzzle is in continual evolution. It’s more like monkey bars than pull-ups. When you push, continue to walk down the path, embrace the drive of direction, you inevitably end up in a different place.
For some time now, I have wondered where my work would surface. How I can create the tangible symbols that feed both my soul and my kids. How do I merge all the pieces? How do I perform the alchemy for my passions, my faith, incorporate the directions of mastery that sit restless on the shelf?
What is my expression?
What is unique to me?
As it turns out, the rainbows, the feathers of the tail, the directions, the skill…
the history, the way I see things, the culmination of courage and faith…
It’s nothing new. It’s always been there. It’s simple and circular and deep, deep in depth. It’s everything I know. Every place I’ve been. Everywhere I want to be.
The work of this journey is unfolding, these images are the map. The circle, the earth, the sky, the color of belief…it appears I may have it in me to be a weaver after all.