“Arnheim believed chaotic tensions are manifestations of a movement toward a more complex order.”  Shaun McNiff observes “that the difficult periods are a way of moving toward something different, with order perhaps being connected to the sense of a finished art project.  There is a feeling of satisfaction when the work is completed, but it tends to be short-lived as I move on to the next piece, and the accompanying tensions. The angst of art is an engine of change and it can put us through the wringer in serving a deeper purpose we cannot always see.”   (Imagination in Action: Secrets for Unleashing Creative Expression)


As I worked with this new painting over the course of the week, I was reminded of the fact that it had been a work I had left undone in my studio from earlier in January.  As I began, I re-engaged with the artwork again, attentive and sensing and being faithful towards new creative responses.

Through colors, forms and patterns and by allowing for a sincerity to deepen with each creative step, I nurture the beginnings of this composition.

“Let expression take its course and respond with actions that feel right in the present moment.  Give the creative process an opportunity to transform itself.”

With a more ready appreciation for the elements of transformation and illumination that are birthed by engaging oneself faithfully with the authentic evolution of an artwork, tensions and all, once addressed, clear the space towards a new range of expression.

Partner Painting’s Exploration from a few years back

“I have found my most successful expression, in terms of spontaneity, newness, and emotional authenticity, happens when I am able to put…troubles to use, harness their power, and create together with them.  They are packed with energy I have to access.  They become partners, co-creators in the service of life.”

I’ve paused a few moments as I’ve worked this week and it is true – “give yourself a chance to play the old situation in a different way. Even if the outcome is not satisfying, you have begun a process of responding to the problem with new variations.”

I’ll keep you posted on the development of this new painting and work in my studio.