Tales of My Personal Art History 2: Goddess Paintings

I moved to Austin, TX in the spring of 2013, and it was definitely a time of adjustment and healing for me.  I mustered up the courage to leave an unhealthy marriage, and a week and a half later I hitched a ride with my best friend who was already moving to Austin.  She needed a travel buddy for a long trip- I needed a change of scenery and a fresh start.  I had packed some clothes, toiletries, artwork, and art supplies because that’s how I roll apparently.  You can read the post I wrote when I first arrived and the one about healing to get a glimpse of that time if you wish.  But soon after, I had stopped writing my blog.  So much had happened in between feeling like a phoenix and posting again the other day.  A lot more healing was needed than I ever imagined and I had struggled with repairing the damage for several months.  My challenge was to rediscover who I was and to “unlock my inner goddess”.  Even though finding inspiration to create was hit and miss, my art became a form of therapy for my soul.  With these next two paintings, I had a blueprint of what I wanted before I stood at my easel.  I had looked to old sketchbooks to rediscover images I had done when I felt whole.  It was fitting that I chose images of powerful and magical women during this time; I time when I was trying to regain my own power.  I may have had a planned composition in mind before I put brush to canvass, but I still let the painting “choose” how it formed.  These works are a combination of free style and formulation.

 

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The Star ~ 2013 ~ acrylic on canvass ~ 30 x 24 

 

This was originally a doodle on my Galaxy Note

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What a difference a change in materials can make!  And on canvass she became more of a powerful celestial figure…. controlling the chaos rather than being captured by it.  The imagery also reminded me of The Star card in a tarot deck, hence the title.  This piece was the first one in which I built up a series of washes and drips in the background; a technique I would continue with later on.

 

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One ~ 2013 ~ acrylic on canvass ~ 24 x 24

 

Here’s the original idea in my sketchbook:

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This shows the difference the change in scale can make.  She did lose the lunar goddess imagery of the original, but I believe she gained something in the painted version.  I’ll explain in just a bit, so bear with me.  I had this original sketch, but still wasn’t sure what direction the painting would ultimately take.  I liked the contrast of the rectangular forms against the curves of her hair and body.  I originally had painted the orbs in her hair to be planets in various bright colors.  But I wasn’t feeling it.  It was only after I painted the shapes white and silver, did it seem to make sense.  She was ONE with the universe; the universal goddess of all.  There was now a feeling of calm that the work radiated.  She evolved from a lunar deity to a cosmic force.  Quite an awesome transformation to inspire me during my personal reconstruction.

So this was my 2nd art period.  A short one perhaps, but part of my artistic and personal journey.

On The Mend

Well, it’s been a little over a month since I last wrote- about a month and a half since landing in Austin.  My mind has becoming less fragile and I feel more like my awesome self.  Still searching for a job and welcoming any prosperity the universe wishes to bestow.  Whereas uncertainty abounds, I’m no longer freaking out and am looking forward to letting the city know of my existence.  It’s a process, like all things, and needs a lot of patience before and benefits are reaped.  Patience. Yeah.  The universe does know I’m an Aries, right?  Patience has traditionally not been my strong suit.  And especially since the past few years were a huge exercise in it, I think I have had my fill please.  But yes, steady income will put the last bit of worry to ease, but I’m ready to explore, to create, to captivate Austin with my sparkleness.  I want to explode into a fireball of awesome!  So this is what a phoenix feels like…

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Jumping Off The Cliff

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(I am such a fool)

So much time has passed where I felt I couldn’t be myself… that I had so much on my mind that I couldn’t share… that I was a shell of my former self.  I had to make some tough decisions.  I’m not going into detail about my marriage woes.  I still respect my husband despite any problems we’ve had.  Beside, my blog isn’t a tool to bash or bully anyone.  It’s about ME.

So in the past few weeks, my life’s journey basically came down to staying in a situation that I was used to, although unhealthy for me, or run blindly into the unknown, hoping I had a better opportunity at happiness, but not knowing if I would succeed.  I was the Fool card in a tarot deck: the smiling, idealistic traveler who is about to walk of the cliff to either his doom or to new vistas… the quintessential Leap of Faith.

It’s been one week since I tagged along with my best friend who was moving to Austin, TX.  So far, I’m relying on the kindness of friends and acquaintances.  I’m staying on someone’s couch and receiving help with food/ groceries occasionally. It’s not bad- the weather here is great:  sunny, clear, in the 70’s.  This is a much welcome change from 26 degrees and snowing (the climate that my friend and I were in whilst loading her U-Haul).  But the fact remains that even though I am adapting to my new town, new living environment, and new relationship status, I haven’t been able to explore the city or feel totally at ease because I have no income.  I’m depleting my small amount of savings.   I needs me a job!  I have sent resumes galore, contacted various temp agencies and job postings, and have written enough cover letters that I could list creative writing as one of my proficient skills.  So far not much luck.

This lack of certainty is making me very nervous, but I’m trying to focus on the positives of this experience.  I’ve been very brave.  At first I didn’t quite get this.  Friends, when told of my decision to leave my husband and then also travel 1130 miles away, were astonished by my courage- thought I was doing something that they could never see themselves having the balls to do similar.  I knew my decisions weren’t easy by any stretch, but wasn’t convinced of my bravery. I think I’m starting to get it now as I sit in a strange apartment complex, in an unfamiliar town, in a cloud of uncertainty.  I do have friends here… I couldn’t have kept sane without them.  But ultimately it comes down to me- my self-reliance to push me forward, earn money, and take care of my life.  My friends will make sure I don’t starve or die in a ditch, but I need them as a balanced support system, not as a crutch or people to mooch off of.  Also, I’m not good at accepting help from others… can you tell? Perhaps this is another lesson to be learned while staying here.

This is the year of me blazing my own trail.  I want to create, spread my wings, and be my sparkly awesome me again. Can’t wait to get some money coming in so I can begin.

The point of this tale:  I’m excited, but extremely nervous!  But at least it makes for a good blog entry.  Until next time…