'We are the sun, and we carry the dawn' - C.O.
Radi(Titled, “B I R D S E Y E"
(a self-portrait drawing from a mirror)
charcoal, watercolor, ink, acrylic paint on cold press paper
23 x 31
Revelations: This process was a sort of homecoming for me or a coming home. Reaching all new heights in my artwork with lots of shakin’ after much-much contending with my wild animal, the shadows and the flesh of humanness. I was tremblin’ while breaking down self perceived limitations…befriending all of it while doing my best to integrate my polarity justly and finding out what could be possible in casting “the” light forward while still honoring the depth of my darkened shadows. Bare with me, artists (we) speak in metaphors. So on, I think I told good ol' boy satan get behind me more than once- and there face to face I was…finally drawing a self-portraiture clearly focused on my face into a hand held mirror taped precariously to my easel, looking upward to jot done the beautiful lines, shapes, curves in what ever form they arrived at. So much appreciation I didn’t notice before. There was also some private schizoid writing involved and the warmth of soothing inward reflections pouring out to meet my own goodness that later moved me very much. (You know the kind of goodness you dismiss rather than acknowledging—as to ‘Let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth’). It’s more than okay to acknowledge our own (reflection) sometimes~ our humaness, not in a self-serving way but enough to know we make a difference in others lives and in our own. To bear another in the same light without judgement- just be & bearing witness...the mirror:
We are who we think we are.
You are who you think you are.
I am who I think I am.
It is a kind of radical compassion for ourselves, and when we offer this kind of presence for another to share their humaness it is a divine gift-- I could only ask a brother and sister to do the same for me. I didn't have healthy attachments growing up (to reflect my nature)-- it has and continues to taken me a lifetime to distinguish + to properly integrate these 'truths' with practice. Believe me, I don’t have it all sussed out, still much more to go…
The beauty here though is that when we remember to perceive ourselves differently than how others perceive us, we know that the rest whether good or bad is to be taken with a grain of salt (that's just me though). So much freedom in that.
A message I received during this endeavor was to love the abyss that stares back at me now-not later-NOW…the sacred mirror is reflecting the mystery, the miracle and gift of being alive. There is so much LOVE in that when we do the solitary work. This body-vessel is the one sacred thing I will ever really own and that which comes with great responsibility to take care.
“It is time to let go and ::sacrifice:: who you are for who you ::could:: become” -J.P. (a timely and poignant quote my husband shared with me while I did this work)
Synchronicity was real...the day I finished this self-portrait...that exact evening our dear friend Al gifted me a bundle of bird feathers, he had been collecting while he landscapes. It was unusual timing, don't you think? After I had been pondering, drawing and imaging the freedom of the bird spirit (as seen in my self portrait.) I am sincerely grateful for such thoughtfulness...I am surprised again and again by other birds of a feather. Thank you to other artists who share a similar blood vein as I do. I don’t think it’s been an easy road, maybe feeling sometimes as my artist friend recently described to me...that it is as if she is in a field alone, valid of course-- BUT I have faith that her hope, her gifts, her solitary mission, her art and most of all her (maybe yours too) is a love that carries all of us forward (the hope, that is!).
I so much looking forward to where the depths and this shift takes me next in my artwork and how I work with others in theirs own art therapy work (not having to do anything, just be present to the many complex forms we as human arrive at, morphing every second)….I’m ready for steeping into the valleys of discomfort, discarding more old wood, standing Sovereignly in the sun and in the humility challenge that dawns on me with intentional frequency (may I be true to these proclamations).
Love to you, some honey and goodness too,
If you are a materials-based visual artist and have never drawn a self-portrait through the looking glass as point of reference or have and are are interested in exploring visionary aspects, I highly recommend this process that Amanda Sage teaches— offered through The Vienna Academy of Visionary Art, give it a whirl: http://academyofvisionaryart.com