September 12, 2018
“As I went down by the river to pray,
Studying about that good old way…”
Although I don’t find myself religious, I do find myself spiritual, and ever becoming more so as I dive deeper into this emerging art form. Tonight those lyrics rang a bell for me as went down by the river to create my artwork in a meditative state of mind.
Some of you may read into this as a sign, what happened tonight though I feel as though it was karma. The energy I was putting out in space came back to me.
Lately I have felt torn between to many things. Right now I am currently working 3-4 different jobs each week, trying to launch this blog, and get ready for an upcoming show on October 4. On the 8th day of the week I try to sleep.
Most of the jobs are things that I don’t want to be doing, but I am because I am trying to kill off my debts. I am becoming “gazelle intense” as Dave Ramsey would say. Right now I feel like a jack of all trades, yet a master of none. Mowing lawns, working as a drafter in the oil field, bartender for special events, selling real estate, training horses, and trying to paint in between… it’s all starting to become too much.
I’ve never been one to focus. When I am involved in one activity I am thinking about what I could be doing elsewhere. I currently have all of these balls in the air and they are starting to crash around me.
Which is all the more reason why tonight meant so much. After working a 10 hr shift in the oil field, I came home and walked down to the river to paint. I was completely distracted, and felt like taking the time to go paint was a waste of time. I have so much left to unpack, clothes to wash, and dirty dishes to take care of, not to mention that I hadn’t showered since last week… oops.
I made it halfway to the river before I realized that I had forgotten to bring down my saw blade. So I hiked back up to the house, and re-centered myself. If I was going to take time to focus on myself, I needed to focus on the moment. Then, I did just that.
As I settled in, my inspiration was to paint in blue since I was next to the water and I made it turquoise because that’s my absolute favorite color. I indulged myself just by picking the color I was going to use.
As I selfishly sat there, painting the status of my soul onto the blade, I heard footsteps rustling towards me in the grass. When I looked up, a couple of the neighbor’s horses had come to water in the river. My heart burst with joy. There I was painting, and joining my company were two horses. My passions united in one stunning scene.
Since I couldn’t pass up the moment, I threw my boots of and waded into the river to capture a photo of the horses as they crossed. Little did I know, I am very tender footed. By the time I was situated in a position to take the shot, the last horse was crossing.
The horses looked at me crazy, like “what is that lady doing down here by the river, and diving in all crazy like. Goodness, she looks drunk stumbling over all those rocks.”
I get it. I was laughing at myself the whole time. I was like “ Who does this? *ouch* Just to get a picture of a horse? (Don’t drop your phone in the water.) You own horses… is this really necessary? *ouch* *ouch* *ouch*” Why yes Jiminy Cricket, totally worth all of the pain and near falls into the frigid water.
All in one moment, I realized that this is what I should be doing with my life. Focusing on my horses and my artwork.
In years past I have tried to do just that. Solely focus on my two passions in life, but I have failed. Recently I read the book ‘Big Magic’ by Elizabeth Gilbert, and she mentions that when we put too much pressure on our creative self, it’s too much to take. No one ever heard of a poet dying peacefully.
It’s a hard shift as an artist to look at your artwork as something that inspired you, to look at it as your next rent check and if you can’t get it sold you won’t be able to eat for another month unless you pick up an odd job here or there. Much of a run-on? Yeah. That’s how I feel about my artwork. Always a run-on of worries. Until recently.
With my other jobs (though they are killing me in their own right), they have relieved the financial pressure on my work, and I am starting to enjoy painting again. Now that I am painting for myself. Not for a client. Not for someone else. Just me. It’s lovely.
So cheers! Tonight was another gratifying revelation.
Today I am grateful for:
Oliver, as he is my rock
My childhood horses such as Pecos, Reb, and Jeb
Having the will to jump in the water just for a cliche picture
Nike, as she is the most loving kitten ever
My best friends, Sierra, Rachael, and Whitney
Taking a piece of time today, gave me so much peace of mind.
What satisfyingly selfish act did you do today?
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