So here we are. Another year has come and gone. We’re well into the end of January and I have not posted for quite some time. My new year’s resolution was to cultivate joy.
I have been reading Julia Cameron’s The Complete Artist Way (2007) and have found certain gems that have helped me through my times of blocked creativity. Although I have written and drawn my thoughts since I was about six or seven years old, my hopes and dreams of publishing remain unfulfilled at this point, but as Betsy Lerner has said in her book, The Forest for the Trees (2000) there’s hope for us “late bloomers”. One beautiful phrase that I read this morning went like this: “It is very important not to become hard. The artist must always have one skin too few in comparison to other people, so you feel the slightest wind”. Susha Guppy (Cameron, The Complete Artist Way (2007), pg. 635).
Well, no worries there. That describes me to a tee! Cameron talks about the grey days. The days where one must keep keeping on. I know too well days like that; when my fears and doubts creep in like dampness that chills to the bone creating aches and pains. I need to do just that. Hang on and stay the course. Sometimes I’m able to overcome days that discourage or fans one’s fears by taking pencil in hand and draw my way out of the darkness. Other days I read and escape, or busy myself in the day-to-day tasks: laundry, bookkeeping, something tangible and practical to keep me grounded. Being thin-skinned can be very difficult at times. Sometimes the best thing I can do is surround myself with my books and heated oat bags, huddle under soft quilts and blankets and write like my life depended on it, until I find a way back to the positive and find the strength to keep going.
One of the projects I worked on recently was a contest that I entered for a book cover. I didn’t win, however I learned a lot and enjoyed the process immensely. Featured below was my submission.