Monday, April 21, 2014

Art Journaling Describing Yourself Today

Here's what I did to that sponged spread in my Positively Creative Art Journal. For not knowing what the journaling exercise would be, I'd say I created quite a compatible background for it. The prompt was to describe with a single word how I saw myself on this very day I was journaling. Dale Ann's hope is that after these exercises focusing on likes and desires and all things positive, a person's feelings should be shifting. She suggested looking back at the previous spreads and considering if at this point, we would do any of them differently, add different responses. And then, journal not about what was or what transpired but about where we had arrived in this moment. Cut an image from a magazine of a person that seems to represent you at this moment, or even who you would like to be.

Again, I was not keen on going off to find a stranger in a magazine to put in my journal. However, I remembered that I had saved on my computer images of several paintings by Charles Courtney Curran that I ran across shortly before moving out to Idaho. I showed one of them in this blog post from 2006 with this comment: 

"I've put up another picture to remind me of where I want to be in a few month's time. This painting by Charles Courtney Curran looks so much like a view near my chosen relocation spot that it took my breath away. I want to be that woman in the painting. I used to climb to such vantage points when I was young and there is nothing like it."

The women in Curran's paintings all look calm, relaxed, happy and in their environment. I thought that's what I would be if I got out of Wisconsin and back to Idaho. Well, the move was an improvement but it did not solve all my problems. Still, I can look at these paintings and know that this girl is inside me. I'd rediscovered these last fall when I was in need of a reassuring image, and for awhile, the one I printed out and pasted in my journal here traveled on my shoulder to offer a steadying hand. Funny how images like this can have that kind of an impact.

I'm not sure that my "positive" quotient has changed much since starting the journaling, hard to decide since I've been working on this for a few years anyway. I've always been a worrier and it has been difficult to shed that habit. But one thing I've discovered is that, as much as I think I want to be in control of everything, there are things I simply don't know enough about to make informed decisions. I need to depend on the expertise of others. Trusting someone else produces worry of its own, but it can also give one a sense of calm - no more wondering should I do this or that; it's now in the hands of someone more qualified. And in the particular situation I am thinking of effecting me these days, the results of my trusting have given me a calm about it which in turn leaves me cautiously optimistic. (See, the worry does not totally leave!)

How do you see yourself, right now, today?


Living to work - working to live said...

That's a very good question, Sheila - and I don't know. I need to think about that.

The Inside Stori said...

Count me in......I'm a terrible worrier too.....that probably would surprise a lot of people....but I am....I guess like you, it's good to recognize it and repeat...CALM, CALM....

Lucia Sasaki said...

Good question Sheila!
I think that today I am not so worried as I was some years ago, truthfully I have been working to have more faith (in God and in me).
This year I learnt (reading blogs) about chosing a word to define my year and I decided to chose one scriputure instead. So I chose 1 Peter 5:6-7 and I am trying to practice it.
Beautiful painting! I didn't know this painter (see how much I learn with you?). When I read what you wrote about imagery I think that yes it is true, it is important to keep this kind of pictures or paintings that make us feel good.
By the way, I liked your page.
Great week, Sheila and thanks for sharing!

Susan Sawatzky said...

Melancholy....this day two years ago we had a fateful meeting with a radiologist. Don was in hospital and a neuro doc wanted to do a whole brain radiation on him. After thinking about it I called and made an appointment to find out if it would get us anything besides putting Don through a traumatic, unnecessary procedure. The answer from the very brave radiologist, who was not even his primary doctor was "nothing."

So I'm feeling a bit sad. Two years has rushed by and I still think of him every day, miss him.

The Idaho Beauty said...

Thank you, everyone, for being brave and sharing your thoughts on this.