GentleSoul Arts

Living a Creative Life


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Merry Go Round

I was leery of publishing my post from yesterday, but I’m glad I did.  Once I hit publish and closed my computer, I didn’t think much about the situation.  I watched TV as the puppies played until it was time to get ready for an Urban Sketching workshop.

For every down in life, there’s an up.  The workshop was great fun, and I was able to catch up with friends I hadn’t seen in 6 months, or more.  There were some new faces and I hope they begin to attend our Urban Sketching meetup.   We’re a small group right now but we’re also less than a year old.

After sketching at the workshop, I sketched some more at home in the evening, finished up a Buddha painting I plan on hanging in my meditation/yoga room.  I’ll post photos of it to Instagram this evening when it’s hanging.

I try to stay positive, and present a sparkly rainbow bunny to others, but I think squashing down those instances of frustration and anger cause them to brew and bubble.   Festering like an infection that you ignore until amputation is required.   I don’t intend to become a chronic complainer but speaking my truth in all aspects of emotions.  Events yesterday were good, and I enjoyed myself.  Honestly, events on  Saturday were good with the exception of a few interactions.

My intention for this week is to speak my truth, and work on being heard when in a group.   If I feel I need to be heard.   It is more fun to observe and note how others interact.

Namaste.


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Comfort Zone Edges

Yesterday I did some things outside of my comfort zone.  I travelled across town to an area I’m unfamiliar with to meet with a geocachers group.  I’m uncomfortable talking to people I don’t know or don’t know well, and initiating a conversation is torture.

But I did initiate a conversation, or tried to, with one person and was told multiple times “I have no idea what you’re even saying”.  I’ve talked to this person at a few previous events and everything was pleasant enough.   After this encounter, I was annoyed, frustrated and honestly have no intention of engaging with them again. Ever.

These emotions carried with me on the rest of my day.   As I was telling my husband something, I was interrupted so I shut down.  He asked me to continue what I was saying but I didn’t want to.  I was on the verge of eruption.  I had asked a question multiple times at the geocaching event, but no one answered.   When I mentioned that, the attempted conversation and the interruption to my husband and how frustrated I am with being ignored or talked over, he went into “fixer” mode.  You need to speak up for yourself, and say “Excuse me but I wasn’t finished with what I was saying…”   How the hell is that going to work when I’m interrupted and talked over?   I would have thought out of everyone in my life, he would be the most understanding of how difficult it is for me to speak to others in general, and have been supportive instead of mansplaining how I need to handle it.

I push the edges of my comfort zone only to have them reinforced.


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React or Respond

A few days ago, I posted on IG a sketch of one of my favorite personalities.  I was anxious as I hit the “share” button, but what the hell!?

I noticed a day later that the personality reposted my sketch! The first comment on her repost was “This disturbs me”.   Granted, I’m not an Artist… I’m an artist.  I sketch for myself, and I enjoyed doing this.   I was thrilled that it was reposted.

My reaction was “Fuck you” and after looking at this person’s profile (who is a photographer, hence also an artist) I blocked them.  Then I thought about my reaction.  Why would I block them?  To keep them from seeing my other sketches?  I post it for people to see.

So I unblocked him, and thought about why he would comment at all, if it truly disturbed him.  To get a reaction out of me?   What would that prove?   Why put the energy into the comment?

Then I thought about something I have seen before “Love it or Hate it, the purpose of art is to elicit a response”  I elicited a response (more likely a reaction) from this stranger.    I didn’t react back.   I didn’t respond, apart from this post.

Since I’ve started studying A Course in Miracles, I’ve been watching how I react or respond to situations.   This whole situation could have caused a huge grievance which I would dwell on over and over periodically for months, or even years.  “Remember when you posted that sketch and that one guy commented…”

But I don’t want to have that darkness lurking around.  I’m letting go of his comments, and of the other comments saying they liked my sketch.  Detachment.

 

 

 


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One Week 100 People 2018

I did a thing!  I saw on Instagram there was a OneWeek100People sketch challenge March 5th – March 9th.  Which is really only 5 days, and not proper week, but time is relative.  My goal was to sketch 20 people a day.  It sounded like a lot at first, but as I got into it, it was fun! I began looking forward to sketching each day. I sketched from TV paused screen, photos in my phone of family, Instagram friends, google search for mug shots, magazines I have around the house. I did some faces, some urban sketching style crowds.  I finished a day early to boot!

My sketches aren’t great, but they are fairly recognizable.  My oldest son mentioned wearing his ‘waffle shirt’ in the sketch I did of him from a photo of his 21st birthday.  I learned what watercolors make a variety of skin tones, and which ones don’t work out so well.  I learned shading more is sometimes better than less, and that noses are weird.

I’m not freaked out about adding people to a sketch now.

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Normal is an Illusion

I’ve been waiting for things to “get back to normal”.  After my mom passed away, after my son enlisted in the Marines and left for boot camp, after my son called saying he was coming home from boot camp after 2 weeks, after my Mom’s birthday without her on Earth…

There’s always something else to cause feelings of uneasiness.

So I’m not going to look for Normal anymore. I’ll accept the things that cause disruptions in my daily life, a broken dryer heating element, traffic in the morning with the annoying LED billboard truck I seem to get stuck behind, winter or severe weather I have absolutely no control over.

Normal is an Illusion.

I wonder if my meditation and yoga practice has directed me towards this epiphany.  I think it’s an epiphany I’ve had many times before, but forget about.  It feels like I’ve been here before, knowing that life is a series of ups and downs and there is nothing consistent except inconsistency.

 


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Obligatory End of the Year Post 2017

If I’m not consistent with my blog posts, I am consistent about doing a year-end post.  Unfortunately, those were all on my previous blog and now lost.  Probably for the best.

I noticed on my Facebook Memories for Dec 31st, there’s a common theme of “this year sucked, I’m ready to get it over with”.   I could say this year is no different, but instead of focusing on the bad things that happened, and there have been a LOT of challenges this year, I want to focus on the things that were good about 2017.

  • I started with a new company in January 2017, finally getting out of the unstable oil & gas industry.
  • With the various deaths in my family, my cousins & I got together for a dinner for the first time ever.  I would like to this to become a regular thing.
  • I’ve also become more at peace with death and dying, and how people grieve in their own ways.
  • I started sketching in public and now our little group is an offical Urban Sketchers chapter.
  • I started geocaching again, and recently hit my 230th find.
  • We got our 2nd corgi, Vision.  It’s been fun to watch him & Jarvis play and wrestle.
  • My daughter self published a book.
  • My oldest son returned to school for automotive maintenance.
  • My youngest son enlisted in the Marines.
  • I finished 21 books.
  • I finished 2 sketchbooks.
  • We have a roof, food and water, and clothing.
  • I’m reasonably healthy.

I’m sure next year’s Obligatory End of the Year post will have a longer list.  I’m going to work on focusing on the good that happens daily, and keep a daily Gratitude Journal.

I was thinking of what my focus word will be for 2018, and I did one of those quizzes that analyzes your Facebook page, and the word given to me was Family.  That is fitting for 2018 so I’ll stick with it.

So farewell 2017.  I’ve learned a lot from you and look forward to 2018.

Happy New Years Y’all.