Monday, November 23, 2009

Making and Cleaning up Messes

"Journal Cover"   Mixed-Media by Eliza Lynn Tobin
Last week, I went into my art making with an offering. Or that is how I started. And I finished a piece that I was happy with. Then things started going down hill. I began struggling through my art making process. Fussing with the paints and layering on the frustration. I got fed up. I threw my brushes. I snapped at my dog and my husband. I realized that I had gotten so caught up in the art making that I hadn't bother to take the time to practice the practices I say I swear by for making the creative process (and my life) go more smoothly. I had forgotten about making offerings and I was certainly not letting go of any outcomes. In fact, I was very much concerned about the outcome and getting frustrated when it didn't come into fruition. I hadn't done my yoga practice in days. 
I think, as much as I believe in the idea that yoga really does help us to bring more creativity into our lives and gives us so many tools to deal with the stresses that arise in the creative life, I forget that its getting into the nitty gritty of actually doing the practices, that really make them work. I can't expect to build the strength and resolve in my body and mind that I require to do creative work, by merely talking about it and writing about it. Nope. I actually have to practice it. Its just comes down to that. And when I don't, it shows. I don't feel as good about what I am doing. I get cranky. I throw brushes. 
So I set out to get back into the swing of my yoga practice. 
I went to a class with an Anusara teacher in a science building conference room. Although this was not just any conference room. On the end where tables and chairs had been pushed out of the way to make room for our yoga mats, there were these windows that stretched across the entire room and expanded from the floor to the ceiling and looked out onto the ocean. Through the yoga, the teacher wove in this idea inspired by a PBS special about the Beatles and their influence in the Russian revolution. She talked about how the Beatles were a symbol of self expression and that they had this powerful influence on the way that people in Russia were expressing themselves, even when it had to be underground. I haven't myself seen the documentary, but I caught on to the spirit of it. All you need is love! So it was in this spirit of science and the Beatles, I explored each corner of the yoga poses we flowed through and left feeling refreshed, steady and calm. There was new space in my body and mind and I was inspired to go and express myself! 
And so I made a journal! I am taking a journaling course with artist Stephanie Lee called "Thought Threads" so I made a bright and colorful journal to use in the course! I am excited! I love all things bright and colorful these days! 

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3 comments:

Nathan said...

The blue background of the cover draws you to the center of the page on your journal. The image in the center is an exciting, colorful, and imaginative display that makes me want to know more about your expressions of your experiences through journaling.

americanepali said...

Practice what you preach... good advice (as always ;))

I should do that and actually learn Nepali instead of whining about not understanding people.

Why do I get so distracted by the internet!

Well... not all distractions are bad. Some are inspiring. Like you :)

Eliza Lynn Tobin said...

I get super distracted too...the internet is both a blessing and a curse when it comes to getting work done...because on one hand, there is a lot of inspiring ideas/thoughts out there to digest...but it is so easy to spend hours digesting through it! I guess it's about finding a nice balance... I am still working on that whole balance thing.

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