““The adult who can carry the spirit of a child into middle and old age is a kind of genius.” - Norman Vincent Peale
Creating art is where I achieve the blissful and intriguing state of flow. To be true to my heart and soul, I must create. I know no other way of being. Creating art of many kinds has been the foundation of my life, the constant thread. Colors literally speak to me. They are alive with subtleties, emotions, power and spirit!
I believe in creating something everyday. Entering this state of flow has become a necessity and joy of daily life.
I believe everyone enjoys this state of being, though many may not be aware of anything more than feeling good. To further explain this state I quote Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi from his book Flow, (copyright 1990) :
“The combination of all the elements, (that create a state of flow), causes a sense of deep enjoyment that is so rewarding people feel that expending a great deal of energy is worthwhile simply to be able to feel it.”
In my own words, the state of flow is where I lose all sense of time, all sense of self and of the outside world and remain 100% engaged in what I am creating and the process of creating it. I find it challenging, joyous, contemplative, frustrating and rewarding all at the same time. For me it is a vacation from the incessant chatter of the conscious brain and where I find peace.
I naturally achieved this state as a child, by picking up anything and everything that I could “make marks” with or use as construction material.
I had the good fortune to work outdoors, inspired by nature, as a young person and then later, with a university degree in hand, I had the opportunity to work at some of the most wonderful places on the planet, where I was surrounded by amazing artwork and was able to interact with artists, curators and collectors everyday.
One of my earliest memories is of the day I discovered I could draw with a simple copper penny.
I proceeded to “decorate” the entire hallway of my family home, full of excitement about sharing my miraculous discovery with my family. Many hours passed unknowingly. Much to my confusion, when my family returned home, my parents did not share in my delight when they saw the condition of the hallway walls, now elaborately and completely filled with my penny drawings!
Another very early experience was during my first week in nursery school. I was thrilled that crayons were placed on my desk and that I was encouraged to draw on the provided paper. In my deep, deep state of flow, I literally never heard the teacher telling us it was time to put away our crayons.
Before I was aware of anything outside my world of drawing, I was being harshly scolded and was then forced to sit on a chair in the center of the schoolroom where I was stared at by the other children, for the rest of what became a very long day. Upon my tearful return home, my mother
sympathetically listened to my tale of woe and she immediately decided I was never to return to that school again.
The Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) in New York City and O.K. Harris, Works of Art, (the first art gallery in SoHo, New York), being amongst my favourites. Inspired by what I saw each day, I would return home every evening filled with new ideas, all jotted down in my ever present sketchbook, ready to start really creating. All of this has shaped me and I continue to draw on it today for inspiration, while forever adding new visions and images to my artwork. I also rely heavily on my dreams and see entire finished paintings and sculpture in my dreamworld.
For the past 15 years I have been living in Italy, with my husband and great menagerie of animals and plants, on a small farm, overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. This environment could not be more beautiful and inspiring. Fortunately, I now have a hilltop studio in the Italian Maritime Alps, as well as more time and freedom to create everyday and enter the beloved flow state. Peaceful in meditative process, yet always one with the Universe.
“When you do things from your soul. you feel a river moving in you, a joy.” - Rumi