An Inspired Dream Come to Life | Naming My Collection + Inspiration Board

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Just like my body I want my art to breathe life. I want my space to breathe life. Art contains the energy of the artist as messenger and the collective energy of the world and the different tribes we connect with. Art IS Life. 

I had no idea where I was going with this collection when I started out on it. I also had no idea that it would connect so much to the artist awakening that I had the summer of 2016.

I didn't quite realize the connection until I was answering some questions about my artist journey during an interview the other day. 

The question I was asked was when I started painting and the interviewer was surprised to find out that it has only been a little over a year. I'm surprised myself! I never expected this. 

I shared the name of the collection, Primal Dreams and the story that follows...

 

I believe that awakenings happen from incremental shifts over time.

Without a doubt, the last 10 years of serious healing energy I've put into taking care of myself was the largest precursor to my creative revival and awakening. Everything I have done has helped me lead me up to this point. 

However, the specifics of that last summer are quite interesting and synchronous. 

It had been over a year since I had completed my yoga teacher training and I was feeling like it was more difficult than ever to do yoga! My body felt like it weighed 2 tons and like I was wading through tar all the time. 

I could barely do a forward fold without wanting to cry. And I couldn't cry! What an awful feeling!

It was during this time that I had an epiphany (built up from days and months and years of small moments).

It was that I needed to STOP. Completely.

Stop teaching, stop doing workshops...just do the bare necessity to support myself financially so I could take care of the true source of abundance (myself) and  SURRENDER. 

I took this message...seriously this time. Because there was nothing else I could do but listen. I'd tried every other way and I still felt like pick-your-word-on a stick. 

Each day I would wake up in fatigue, pain, heavy body claustrophobia and just listen.

 

Starting from the ground up, I did restorative yoga and yin yoga. I took everything I'd learned over the years and gave it 100% completely to myself.

The attention, the presence, the intention.

I never left the floor really.

Instead of pushing my body through the heaviness and the pain, I opened up to it. I got curious about it. I validated it and saw clearly how it represented immense amounts of grief that were normal reactions to earlier experiences in my life. 

It was extremely hard. Words can't really describe it.  

As I listened, my body started to wake up ...through pain.

I intuitively knew that the muscles that were opening were connected to the fight/flight/freeze response in my body. I watched as it started from my legs and went all the way up to my head over months worth of time. 

I remember feeling my back for the first time, feeling my legs activate like they hadn't in decades. 

Then there were the muscle spasms through the night. Aching and pain during the day. Convulsions and cramping at night.

I was blown away by how much pain was coming up.

Yet simultaneously I wasn't fazed.

I knew I had been carrying muscle tension for decades and that I was just now starting to feel a lot of what that tension had been protecting me from.

I continued to do this day in and day out..it felt like it was going on forever!

And then one night, around 2am, I woke up around the standard time that my unconsciousness would throw me back into the room and reality to do some more yin poses.

After a lengthy hip opening pose, all of a sudden, I had a rush of creative inspiration pass through my entire body. 

I felt imagery and impressions and a dreamlike state that surrounded my birth come through.

I was in a deeply meditative state and I felt tapped into my newborn self, appearing from the womb, greeting the world and feeling scared by it and confused. 

I processed a lot of feelings that night about being in the womb and coming into life.

I didn't want to be born, I wanted to stay in the comfort of the soothing dark. The world felt harsh, bright, intense. People were staring at me, urgently waiting for me. It didn't feel easy or gentle. Childbirth rarely is. 

I ended up scribbling lot's of doodles of this experience. Peeking through the sacred circle of the womb. Seeing round faces stare back at me. Fertility goddesses.

Then I fell back asleep.  

From that day forward, the art and the creative inspiration hasn't stopped. 

As I shared the name of my collection with the interviewer, I realized that this collection all started with a primal dream from that one summer's night. That my human life is the culmination of a primal dream.  That this creative awakening is a rebirthing of my true self. 

How funny that I was creating this collection from that nonverbal place and then read the language in the paint after!

It has never been more clear to me that I speak with energy and feeling and that the words often find themselves much later!

The primal and dreamlike aspects of this collection came through my hands and heart and now I can see that this relationship between myself and the canvas has been building for a long time.

That my journey is deeply connected to this work and that I am not in control or in charge of what I create when it is coming from this inspired place. 

I also wasn't in charge of the awakening because I had so many starts and stops over the years and there was no forcing it! 

I thought I'd share a few of the connections I made in free flow form to Primal Dreams:

 

I love organic marks and shapes because they are the same lines and movement that make mountains and flow water🎨

I love dancing, movement, free flowing. 

A dream- a happy dream because I never thought I'd be doing this and feel this connected and joyful to my purpose

A dream because it's channeled through my perspective, my lens of the world. 

A dream because it's representative of what my nighttime dreams feel like- ethereal, transparent yet slipping thru my fingers, edgy, soft, energized and full of emotion and passion

Representative of my daytime dreams, because my creativity, imagination and thoughts are where I've hung out for good and for bad. 

The idea of a dream becoming a reality

Representative of my creative awakening. It happened at night around 3am in this dream like state

This collection uses a limited color palette, similar to primal and tribal art where our ancestors had limited access to the palette and tools they found in their environment.

The essence of mark making, using fingers, palms, impulsive and energetic movement couple with a grounded meditative state. 

Real, raw, authentic, human dancing in the infinite capsule of spirit and in life. 

 

Also, See below for a little inspiration board that I have created (again after the collection) that represents the modern dreams and imagery that inspire these pieces.

 

Thanks for listening in. I hope my story inspires you to listen deeply to yourself and to be patient with wherever you are. Something beautiful is unfolding!

Ofcourse, I can't wait to reveal the full collection to you! It releases Monday September 18th at 10am and on Sunday at 8pm for subscribers. Enter your email below to get on the list. 

Everything in the Right Time + My Digital Sketching Process

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One fascinating part of my creative process is how the ideas from my doodles, smaller canvases, paper studies, and digital fingerpainting end up translating into larger work or keep showing up in collections over time.

It delights my inner child to see that there are symbols, strokes and signs that represent my Innet Artist and True Self. 

There is something comforting about having this inner language. Knowing that it is right there, beneath the surface, waiting to find a channel or vessel to display itself to myself and then to the world.

I also keep learning from continuously painting, doodling and playing that this intuitive and unique language expresses itself in its own pace and in its own time. 

Just like the alphabet, symbols like letters build upon eachother, expressing an ongoing conversation of inner imagery, color, light and impression.  

As I'm continuously sharing, I'm tickled to be aware of how this is another metaphor for life.

So often I hear students, clients and artist friends (including myself!) being hard on ourselves about where we are in the process.

I am starting to realize wading through this black and white critical muck is actually the journey to becoming an adult!

Black and White thinking, notoriously a childlike and adolescent developmental stage is often a place we remain stuck in because let's face it, most of our cultures aren't paying homage to the growing pains required of "adulting" it.

Self parenting with a loving voice that has patience, compassion and gentleness instead of our hormone induced adolescent instant gratification urges takes practice. Lots of practice. It's hard and it sometimes feels like this in between stage will never end.

 

And we often forget that life is about the growth, not the outcome.

 

I'm not saying those outcomes aren't nice little rewards, but as we soften into our true selves, (returning to that childlike curiosity yet with a mega smart and centered parent navigating the ship) we realize that each day that we learn things they are the threads that will become interwoven over time.

So as part of my process I'm sharing some of the digital sketches that I often find myself doodling in my bed at night or when I'm on the couch and don't have the energy to get the real paints out.

 

See if you notice any similar motifs and themes in the work! 

 

And stay tuned! The collection is coming! Look out for a post including my inspiration board for the collection as well as the collection name revealing!! 

 

 

 

 

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What It Means to Be An Abstract Artist

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I am so excited to share with you all, over the moon really, that I have a release date for my NEW COLLECTION!!

SEPTEMBER 18th it is!!

I have been painting my fingers and toes off for months now and this will be my FIRST official online EXHIBITION and the ART IS FOR SALE!!!

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There will be abstract paintings of all sizes, small, large and in between and I can't wait for you to see it! 

 

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WHAT DOES BEING AN ABSTRACT ARTIST MEAN TO ME??

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I think what's so amazing about Abstract Art is that it means something different to each person, the artist and the viewer!  

 

Yet at the same time, there is this constant conversation going on, a subtle yet powerful one that is where souls speak to eachother.

The inspired soul speaks through impressions and as humans I believe it is our life's journey to keep fine tuning so we can listen to these messages and take them as divine instructions to follow in our daily lives.

 

I am an abstract artist working with mostly acrylic, inks and often watery mediums.

What does Abstract mean to me?

It is truly a visual language.

Art is my truest self expression and it is the vessel in which the conversations of my unconscious parts (emotions, desires, healing experiences) speak visually.

As someone who found out I was a joyful painter 35 years into my life, it couldn't be more of who I am!! I have found it is the foundation of my being and all the work and sharing that I do.

Expressively and intuitively painting takes everything I've learned thru the years as a mindfulness practitioner, teacher & therapist in order to let go and release my inner critic and to truly be free in my movement and marks.

My work is this entire journey on display with color, energy, aliveness and contemplative space to surround it all. It is a celebration of what I have been through, of what I have healed and am still healing and of the joy that is my truest self.

There is often a zen feel and a primal energy to my work. I'm inspired by textures, light, fabrics, fashion and decor as well as so many different color palettes. However, you may notice that I absolutely love deep blues, indigo and rich violets along with lot's of metallic!!

Nature finds its way throughout my pieces, showcasing the same artist's hand that makes mountains, blooms flowers, sprouts botanicals and creates earth, fire, wind and water.


The unspoken words of my life now have a place to hang and I couldn't be more grateful then to exist in this limitless space of possibility and inspiration. Sharing this journey with others is a gift thatlights my Aries fire!
 
What does Abstract Art mean to you? Have you always been attracted to it? Do you have trouble "understanding" it? I'd love to know your thoughts in the comments of this blog post! 
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Stay Tuned for More Celebrating and the BIG REVEAL!! Coming soon! The name of the collection!!

 

xoxo

Jen

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