"Tatum Ventures Out" - mixed media on aquabord, 16" x 20". Ready to frame or can be leaned against a wall upon a shelf. Available on Artfinder.
Another two-fer day in the studio, as I finished up one more demo piece AND this enormous whimsical pooch. There is something about open windows, ocean breezes and cooler temperatures that make studio time more blissful than usual. Also, Pongo discovered how to squeeze himself under my work table, so now I have a paint-spattered foot warmer in there. Another layer of bliss.
I've spent a lot of time introverting in the last couple of weeks...hiding in the cave, not venturing out much, recharging my batteries and contemplating the state of things. There is so much raw emotion, pain, openness and angst in the world. My first instinct is to RUN AWAY and dodge these bullets of feeling. So, of course, the universe conspires to dump several chapters on pain in the next section of the Nepo book, Seven Thousand Ways to Listen. I cringed at first, but went on to read them despite my misgivings.
There is a lot about stilling the urge to run from pain. Ok, a direct message for me. But there was also a delicious section on how "our culture is obsessed with how things fall apart." True. The news is almost exclusively negative. But Nepo goes on to say this - "...things are constantly coming together, though we have forgotten how to hear them." Oooooh yes! A change in focus on how things come together after falling apart - just what I needed.
So as I shift my view from the pain in the world to the coming together, I can see so much beauty. In our neighborhood, where hurricane debris piles are still around (though fewer of them), blue tarps flutter on rooftops and enormous tree stumps reminds us of what is now gone, broken or damaged, there are neighbors helping each other, meeting folks they may never have otherwise, reaching out and forging connections that will last long beyond the debris piles. And as our new pooch settles in to family life, the pain and loss of prior pooches softens...the skills we learned with our last Great Dane have helped us understand this noble beast so much better. And as the months fly by after my dad's passing, the pain and confusion of end of life issues begin to weather and fade, leaving more room for sweet memories and smiles. Things are coming together...I can hear them now.