Something amazing happened to me recently. I was staring at a blank canvas with a very specific idea what I wanted to pour out of my soul. I went to work and in less than an hour the very vision I had in my head was there on the canvas looking back at me.
I was giddy. I immediately made Mike and Shelby come into my studio and see the painting. I asked them "What do you see?" They saw the same thing I saw. Even though it was a bit abstract, it was clear what I was trying to say. I texted the photo to my best friend with the same question "What do you see?" Her answer? Exactly what was in my head. I've never been more thrilled than that very moment. The idea, the feeling, the story in my head ... flowed from my heart to the canvas.
I danced around my studio. I danced around the house. I stared at the painting and then I danced some more. This was a huge break through for me. Then I started thinking. How did I do it? Can I do it again? One of my greatest desires has been to see growth in my art. I wanted to become more comfortable with my painting process and really figure out my style. I wanted to figure out how I did this "magical" thing, so I could do it over and over and over again.
When I was a new reporter my editor gave me the best advice: the more you do (in that case, write), the better you'll be. It seems like such a simple idea, but so many people want to sit down at a piece of paper or a canvas and be a master the first time out. Practice and repetition are essential to developing your artist self.
When I was writing seven to 10 articles a week, I couldn't help but improve my reporting and writing skills. The more I interviewed, the more comfortable and skilled I became at drawing out the best parts of a story. The more I wrote and rewrote my stories, the better they flowed.
It's the same way with my painting. I always thought it was magic. But it's not. It's consistency and practice. I made a goal to paint at least five times a week and in the process of trying to achieve that goal, I got into a rhythm. I became more comfortable with the process. Ideas started to flow. My heart and head started to speak the same language. I guess there is a little magic to it all, because I didn't see it coming. But with all the regular painting, I am beginning to find my voice. With all the regular creating, I'm producing some things that are really awesome. Practice really does make awesomeness both in my soul and on the canvas.
I have "the" magical paining sitting on an easel in my studio. I see it each time I walk in the room. It makes me smile and feels my body with warmth. It reminds me that if I work hard, invest the time, pour my heart into my practice .... then the magic will happen.