Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Snow. Again.

Try as I might, I can't keep my spirits up lately. The snow just keeps on coming down around here.  Today I had to shovel up almost three inches of the stuff.  And may I say how heavy it was?  It was really heavy and my back and shoulders ache.  So it's exercise, I get it, but it's enough already.  I am done.

I wanted to ignore the snow for a while by looking at some summery watercolor paintings from my garden flowers last summer.  At the time I had not yet read The Artist's Way and was really bad at letting the household chores rule my free time.  Now that I know better, the housework was my way of blocking myself off from art, subconciously.  After doing the course I can identify my actions and try to veer towards ways of overcoming those blocks.  Now I have tools! 

The snow is my block right now.  I know I'm letting the weather block me from the studio.  All I want to do is sit and look out the window at the snow, snuggled up on my comfy little sofa with a cup of hot coffee and a lap blanket.  What studio?  What art?  Huh?  Oh, that.  Maybe later.  Maybe not. 

Those summer watercolors gave me a breath of fresh air, the feeling of stretching out and a moment to warm up and relax.  By looking over the paintings I took myself to that time of hot weather and sunshine, far from this dreary misery that is this year's cold and snowy winter.

I remember that day well, when I walked through my house on the way to the kitchen.  Catching a glimpse out the living room windows, I noticed the really tall pink echinachea moving in the breeze along with the black-eyed Susans and the red daylilies.  Something said, "Come on outside and sit here" and I dropped everything and did just that.  The travel watercolor set was available and so was the block of paper.  I had the time and the motivation, and I vowed not to waste it.

Sitting on a chair in the garden, eye-level to the flowers made it seem like I was all alone in the world.  I sketched the scene quickly in pencil and then went straight to color.  Mindlessly, I worked purely from instinct, not thinking of which color to use next, just doing it.  I imagined this might be how Monet felt painting his garden pond and bridge in Giverney, France.  I painted the way the light fell on the petals and surfaces at the afternoon hour and the color of the deep darks in the shadows.  It felt wonderful to lose myself in that moment.

I wish I could figure out how to get myself in that moment right now.  Snow is not my friend.


  1. Very hard to motivate yourself if you have to go out in that snow to your studio.
    Why not bring a little of your studio into your home? Something as simple as a sketchbook that will accept watercolour and a small field kit of paints. You could make lots of little painted sketches against the day the weather improves. And you'd be warm and snuggly doing it :)

  2. Thanks so much for your comment, Pat! Funny thing is, the studio is in my basement! The idea that there's more snow coming down is depressing, like that winter/not enough sunlight thing. My field kit is already in my car for those times I might want to paint.

  3. Oh Dora, you've made me laugh! The studio is in your basement! That was priceless :)
    I understand if its SAD, all I can then say, is hang on girl! Not long now and we'll have spring :)

  4. Hahahahaa! I'm glad you had a good laugh! You made me laugh too! If you poke around here you'll find a post I did about my basement studio, hahahaha!

  5. I hear ya! I feel the same way about the snow. I'm so waiting for summer. I just wanted to tell you how much I love these watercolors.

  6. Rebekah, thanks so much! I can't wait for better weather and some heat!


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