Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Flying Girl and The Seventh Wave, or Perspective

Flying Girl and The Seventh Wave, or Perspective
Golden Fluid Acrylic, white gel pen.

This is the image that came to my mind while reading chapter four for the book club in the 12 secrets of creative women. This chapter is Surrendering to Creative Cycles.

I've been working for the last few years on what I call, "riding the wave." Life goes up, life goes down, but you can ride that force and get far. Sometimes it feels like you've been overwhelmed by the tsunami, sometimes it feels like you have been pulled under and you don't know which way is up.

I've had occasional depression a few times in my life, and finally found my way out of it. A lot of it had to do with being productive, getting out and spending time with people, taking slow and steady steps to go where I want to go and writing and painting. but when I had my kids, I was hit with something that made it impossible to do my old routines for getting out of the funk.

I was in Post Partum Depression, feeling like somebody foreign to myself, someone who couldn't even write in her journal, and I couldn't get out. That made me feel even worse about myself. When I stopped nursing at a year, the PPD lifted and all of a sudden I could see that it had been there.

And in the year since then, I have worked slowly to ride that wave of my life, embracing the lows where the riptide pulls at my ankles, learning that those are the times when you need to swim parallel to shore and not struggle to make the strides you long for. And also, I have struggled with understanding that the highs, with their light and speed and joy are also only temporary. All is transitory and all gets you in the direction your life is going, if you don't struggle against it.

Another realization I made, while I painted this picture was a surprise, but fit right along with my riding the wave concept.

As I painted it, I realized that if you simply turn the painting over, she is no longer being overwhelmed by that wave and tossed about in the sea, but in fact, taking flight.

Flying Girl and The Seventh Wave, or Perspective (reversed)
Golden Fluid Acrylic, white gel pen.

And that too has been a lesson I have learned in the last year and more. Those lows can be really low, but if you focus on the lessons to be learned, or the small joys to be had, or the faith that there will be a dawn, instead of how hard it all is, then you can see that the very life that was drowning you a moment ago is in fact propelling you to your own fulfillment.

Pardon me for saying, but my painting blew me away.


septembermom said...

Wow, I love this picture. Riding the wave through life is a great theme to portray in art. The colors, the momentum and the female figure are all full of spirit and energy. Congratulations on creating such a great piece!

Jamie Ridler said...

What a powerful and beautiful illustration of riding the waves, surrendering to cycles.

Thank you for sharing your story.

Querulous Squirrel said...

That painting reversal is such a beautiful metaphor. I'm just always amazed at how creatively productive you are with little ones. I myself was so drained. You astound me.

risa said...

Wonderful post. Beautiful painting. Incredible insight. Thanks for sharing.

m. heart said...

wow that is cool!
what an uplifting post.

D said...

I really like the greens in this painting and the contrast of her bright red/brown hair. It is all about how we look at it, huh.

differenceayearmakes said...

of such are epiphanies made

Kavindra said...

I love the painting and the wonderful deep meaning you have made from it, even after completion!

Thank you for your smart comment on my blog - and I realized you were right, the 2 feed each other - I have a whole series of fairytale paintings that ushered in 3 big fairytale poems later. Very empowering to realize that, so thank you a bazillion times!

Leah said...

what a gorgeous painting! it looks like she's dancing on the waves.

i've been thinking on this metaphor of riding the waves recently too. your painting expresses that so well!

mapelba said...

I've liked all your paintings for one reason or another, but the instant this image popped up on my screen, I said--that's me!

Love the change in perspective. Lovely job.

Genie Sea said...

I find this painting exceedingly exhilarating! The fact that turning it over. changes the perspective makes it even more fascinating. In all it's symbolic ways :)

tekeal said...

no parden needed. it is brilliant!

aquamaureen said...

What a joy to find you . . . your art has an incredible spirit to it, and your words paint vivid pictures as well. This most recent piece--riding the wave--touches me at a very deep place. A "simple" change in point of view invites us to consider, as you said, that the very wave we were struggling with, and felt as if we were drowning because of, is actually lifting and propelling us . . . makes me want to wander my house and turn all my artwork upside down and see what I see!!

squarepegperson said...

Wild-brilliant to try flipping this over...just looking at it from a different angle and voila - whole other thing going on..i love this..fantastic post! and i LOVE the picture...and - as Querulous Squirrel said - the amount of creativity you move with while your kids are little - wow!

nanakin1 said...

I love the idea of looking with a different perspective. Magic!
I've ridden that wave a few times myself (or been engulfed by it) but never thought to look at it like that. Thanks.
Hugs and peace,
Nancy (nanakin1)

whitney said...

I really enjoyed reading your words that accompany this painting. They resonate with me. I especially connect with your understanding that all is transitory and moving - the highs and the lows. What a nice surprise to flip over your painting to see that she's in flight. It's all one.

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