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"Course Correction"

"Course Correction"

Mixed Media on Gallery Canvas

40cm x 60cm


I had no idea what direction I was taking with this painting while I was painting it, and I really didn't know its meaning until I had it finished. Sometimes painting is like that for me. There is obviously something inside of me that needs to be expressed and sometimes it's not until the piece is completely finished that I can then recognize what that is.

You may be wondering how I decided when a painting is actually finished or not, especially if I'm not completely sure what it's supposed to represent. Well, the easy answer to that question is that I get a feeling about it.

Usually I hang the painting in my dining room so I can see it at different times of day and get a sense if something needs fixing. Sometimes there's a slight addition or alteration that has to happen, but to be honest, when most pieces graduate from studio to dining room wall, they are indeed finished. It just takes a few days for me to arrive at, and to accept that conclusion.

This piece has been hanging in the dining room for about 5 days now, and I'm finally ready to release it to its new owner, its new home, and its new wall.

The colours in this piece are so luminescent. The pictures really do not do it justice. As the light changes throughout the day, so does the intensity and luminosity of the colours. As I watched the transformation from morning light to evening dusk over the last few days, it made me think about how we go through different periods of life; periods that are brighter or darker than others.

Side views - up close of texture and colours

Sometimes we circle back into a dark period of our lives, and spin there for a while, even if that's the last thing we would ever wish for. I believe that somehow there is a reason for all of this, but we may not always be able to see that reason clearly.

Only we can see the reason(s) we circle back into sorrow, shame, blame, guilt, or just general despair. We may need to clarify something in present day, and the process of going back into the darkness of our past can actually help shed some light and understanding on something that is happening right now. Spending a little time with our dark side could also be a needed reminder that we must change our perspective on something, or perhaps finally clean up an old wound. Whatever the cause for spiraling downward at times, we need to fully trust the process and let it flow and pass. It is happening to teach us something. There is a reason, and eventually we will learn, grow and course correct until it happens again which is highly likely.

Everything in this universe co-exists with its opposite: dark and light, good and bad, kindness and cruelty. It is the yin and yang of our world.

Why would we as humans be any different? We have a dark side as well as a light side.

It is important to accept ALL of our being. Sometimes when we resist the darkness, it multiplies and grows. Why? Because what we resist persists. Another way of saying is that what we focus on expands. If we can simply accept that it is part of the cycle of life, part of who we are and if we can just BE with that, then it will not spin us out of control.

"Course Correction" is my reminder and expression of this concept. There is both light and darkness in life. One is not more powerful than the other unless we make it so. Rather than trying to erase or eradicate all the darkness from our lives, we must learn to accept the darkness as part of life and part of our process.

It has been almost 2 decades since I read her book on this topic, but Debbie Ford in "Why Good People Do Bad Things: How to Stop Being Your Own Worst Enemy" really nails the importance of embracing ALL parts of ourselves, most importantly: our dark side. I highly recommend this book if you'd like to explore the topic further.

Until next time, thanks for spending some time with me and my thoughts... 'Steady she goes'..... and if it doesn't go steady, then rest assured that life will "course correct" you when needed. xo


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