The Birth of Soul Revival: How Painting Saved Me From Losing It
"Of Hands & Hustle", acrylic on canvas 30x40 available in the shop

"Of Hands & Hustle", acrylic on canvas 30x40 available in the shop

It all started in...


summer 2014. I’d gotten to a point of dreading my job, and went back to school to trade that career in for one in Massage Therapy. I was dying to return to a place of zen, to resist overwhelm, and though I still had a desire to help people, I needed help. 

It was the first time my now husband and I attempted to “blend” our kids together for a whole summer. It brought us great stress, stirred up so much conflict and discomfort. Until this point, our relationship had been one blissful ride. 

Then a miracle happened. A last minute spot opened up at The Creative Cafe, a collective of seasoned Artists at Willow Creek Community Church. The curator said I could display visual art or poetry. Everyone knew I was a Poet, but I had never publicly shared my love for visual art, my closeted attempts at painting over the years, or the desire to have an art show of my own, which  I’d repressed for 38 years. 

 

I can’t lie, I painted some ugly stuff. I bought cheap canvas and craft paints, retreated to my bedroom for 72 hours, staying up until the wee hours of the morning to paint. I put a lot of effort into trying to create things that I thought would tell my story. To my surprise, people loved it!! But the one painting (pictured below) I put the least amount of effort into was the one that got the most buzz--including an offer for me to name my price and they would buy it. (to which I promptly and stupidly turned down because this was my heart and soul and why would you wanna buy that? Didn’t they know I wasn’t a real Artist?) 

Three years later my work has evolved and so have I. Art has given me permission to be my full, Authentic self. And in turn, I’ve given myself permission to be a full-time working Artist with a thriving business. I lost folks along the way, because they don’t recognize this bolder, more empowered version of me. There are some who won’t take me seriously as an Artist because I was not “formally trained” in Art school and because I have no desire to emulate the dead white men who dominate Art History. What I DO have is a soul-connection to creativity, a spiritual depth that informs everything I create, followers/supporters who buy my work because they are moved by it, a calendar booked with exhibits and shows, and constant invitations for more..  

I realized the leap I took to save my soul is what WAY more significant than I ever understood. I’m not just creating Art. This is literally a SOUL REVIVAL, the ART is HEALING. And I feel both blessed and honored to be here.