Art as Meditation

As I continue to develop a sustainable creative practice, I've noticed that the process of making art or something creative often puts me into a meditative state. It brings several key benefits that I'd like to share with you today.

Relieve stress

The act of drawing or painting helps me calm down and focus on the task at hand. Once I have everything set up and start to create, I feel stress melt away as I move my pen or brush across the page. Our minds are so full of distracting thoughts and voices which add to the stresses we experience in everyday life. Stopping, slowing down and focusing on an art project helps me breathe more freely, slowly and deeply.

Discover fulfillment

After I got laid off from my corporate job, I really struggled to figure out what was next for me. Diving into art classes and learning new art skills helped get my mind off of those troubles. The time spent focused on creating something, no matter how big or small, enabled my discovery process and I became more comfortable with "open space" in my head. We all have so much potential and a creative practice helps me nurture what's possible.

Become present

Like meditating, my art practice helps me find that “zone” of peace and quiet and empty my mind of the noise inside my head. When I’m using my hands and am focused on crafting something, all those annoying voices and thoughts disappear. I don't think about the past or the future but rather on the here and now and what's right in front of me. I cherish that joyful place where my mind is at ease and where time seems to disappear.

Find your true self

It’s during those moments of calm and quiet that I can find my true self.  I realize how blessed I am to be able to pursue my dreams.  I gain more clarity everyday around my desire to share this discovery with others. We all seek healthy practices whether that’s weekly exercise, daily meditation, better eating, less drinking, or a yoga practice. Nurturing a creative practice brings all these same benefits and more!

One of my favorite quotes is from Julia Cameron’s book: The Artist’s Way. In it, she says: “The capacity for delight is the gift of paying attention.”

For me, that means paying attention to both the little things and the big things in my life that I’m ever so grateful for.

I’d like to encourage you to try drawing or painting or a craft. I believe you’ll experience these same benefits so why not try, right?

For this week’s free tutorial, I’ll show you how I relax while learning more about my paints and colors through a very easy exercise. I love doing this when I don’t have the energy for more complicated work. And I find it extremely relaxing. I hope you do too!

Click on the video above to watch this free tutorial on creating a color palette cheat sheet.

Before I let you go this week, I have just published a new watercolor class on Skillshare called Paint with Me! Three fun and easy watercolor studies. It includes a bonus lesson which is a sneak peek into my process for converting watercolor elements into pretty still life bouquets. Click the image below for the private link to the class. I hope you will check it out!

And remember, It’s Never too Late to Create!

xo,

Anne

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Here is the audio recording of last week's blog in case you want to listen to it while you are on the go.