As a romantic, even the simplest conversations sometimes blossom into deep, penetrating discourse because of floral expressions that embellish a thought. I had one of those discussions recently, that started as I was closing a text exchange with a friend. We hadn’t seen each other in about two weeks, as I’ve immersed myself in the process of enriching my Social Media engagement, out of necessity, to expand my network. But to paint a complete picture for you, she is also a romantic interest who has kept my enthusiasms at bay as the “third wheel”. So our conversations, even when standing on pure decorum, are always infused with the overtures that underlie the platonic structure of our correspondence. I told her, “I won’t be a ghost for much longer,” to which she replied, “What do you mean by that?”

In hind-sight, it was an abstruse thing for me to express in a form of communication as static as text, especially as someone who is trying to respect the boundaries of current circumstances. However, I also stumbled upon useful discoveries as I traversed the question in search of a multi-foliate answer, because, despite the implicit nature of that statement, I simply didn’t intend to suggest anything more than “I am in the process of Emerging”, in many ways that remain a work in progress.

The most significant of those discoveries, as they pertain to my creative pursuits, is that I am only now beginning to awaken from a deeply introverted trance that has guided me through the last several years. Meditation has not only been a way of being present in the moment, allowing me to feel and experience the world on a deeply personal level, but it is also a retreat and sanctuary, when the event of Life threatens to supplant the exerted efforts for which I have sacrificed so much. So as I now immerse myself in the effort of discovering “My Story”, I realize more and more that I have almost become desensitized to the deprivation I only occasionally used to endure (in Self-preservation), which finally brings me back to the beginning… a painting in my collection that I keep in my studio as a reminder that “I knew this would be a difficult journey”.

“Self Portrait, 2008” (below) symbolizes the decision I faced when choosing the path of the artist. That moment was a stance taken in the conflict between my Spiritual Voice, which is expressed in my work, and my physical Self, who belongs to this lifetime. I recognized then the sacrifices I would have to endure to find equilibrium between these two vivid aspects of myself. It was an epiphany, a moment in my life that has led me here, still painting and evolving alongside my expressive brush.

In the painting, the city burns in the background as a symbol of the Social Life I would have to abandon in order to find and nurture my creative Self, who is inherently introspective. But I also went another extreme, removing the threat of my enormous Love from the equation, which is sometimes even too big for me to handle, by setting my heart aside where it still rests in the box (for now).

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Self Portrait

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