Thursday, March 28, 2013

My Color Obsession!

I am absolutely obsessed with color!  Have been for as long as I can even remember!  In the past my crazy need for all things bright, bold and beautiful took led me to paint absolutely anything that would hold still long enough.  Walls, t-shirts, wood, murals, houses, small animals....whatever I could get my hands on.  I have painted my own houses so many times that my husband is used to coming home to me hanging off a ladder, trying to repaint the 30 foot wall that I just painted purple "just to see how it would look" before he got home!

In the last few years I've had to resort to painting other people's houses to fill my mad urge for paint and transforming color.  My idea of bliss is being up to my elbows in paint, transforming a room by splashing on unexpected, fabulous color and watching a former 'color phobe' morph into a believer....and then painting it again in a few weeks:)

I am also an 'eye candy junky'!  I love all things graphic: magazines, papers, wall paper, fabric, advertisements, old books, old papers, bits of this and that, whatever I can get my hands on.  And although I am an 'organization freak',  art paraphenelia is one of the things I allow myself to 'collect'.....ok hoard is a better word!

About a year ago, after five years of helping my son, now 16, battle Leukemia, I found myself in a very bad place.  Exhausted, worn out and stressed,  I received an ultimatum from my Doctor to find something to help me de- stress or else....  As my wonderful hubby was not really looking forward to me re-painting the interior of the house for the third time, I decided to do something new.....to paint....on paper! 

I know, the idea was a shock to me too. In fact, I originally decided to start journaling again.  I have always been a big journaler, but found that sometimes I just talked myself in circles and didn't really end up feeling any better.  As I started 'journaling' I started to come up against some things that were really 'beyond words'.  So I would occasionally sketch, or just splash color on the page with whatever I had around.  Lo and behold, the peace came!  As I continued to just throw whatever I wanted on the page without worrying about anyone ever seeing it...the healing came:)

Then, one fateful night, while we were in Phoenix at the Children's Hospital with my son, I happened upon a copy of "Art Journaling" in a book store and my world absolutely exploded....that's what I was doing!  Not well, grant it...but I was doing it!  I read every single inch of that magazine and drooled over the pictures constantly.  I still have that magazine!  I still stare at it and use it for inspiration and ideas....in fact, I carry several 'art' magazines with me all the time because finally, I had come upon something that really did make me feel better. Not even just better....good... great...sometimes even blissful! 

I started looking back over my life and realizing that the times I was happiest was when I was 'creating', whether with my extremely talented artist mom or watching my Engineer Dad draw and build amazing creations in the back yard. 

So, I started making time every day to work in my 'art journal'.  As the "chemo life" is one of constant change and travel, sometimes I just had a pen, or 4 crayons stolen from the play room on the 7th floor.  I found that I can finally really live out one of the greatest principles handed down to me from my wonderful mother....to start where you are, use what you have and bloom where you are planted.

So, needless to say, things spiraled beautifully out of control and now I am once again carving out time to   splash paint, collect bits and pieces, collage and to constantly be on the lookout for the next wonderful inspiration.  I've become the 'accidental artist' and I can't believe how the Lord has used it for healing in my life.  I now picture every scripture in living color.  I think in pictures and colors just like I did when I was little.  I never stopped- I just lost my way.  Our creator Jesus was the original radical, outrageous, shocking artist.  Splashing unbelievable color in even the most mundane little corners.  And now I hear His voice so clearly in even the little details.

And.....it's still cheaper than therapy!

So jump in!  Join me!  Just pick up the nearest paper and a writing  tool- even if it's an old stick of lip gloss, and create....dream a little.....dare to be imperfect and you just might find your 'BLISS'!