Have you ever been in a conversation when someone was telling you their opinion and before they were even finished, you were composing how you would respond? Well, that is not Mindfulness.
“Mindfulness means paying attention in a particular way; On purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally.” Think it’s easy? Just try and walk down a street and just enjoy the trees, the wind against your face, and the clouds in the sky. Instead, a hundred things pop in our minds – is the stove off, can I get the laundry done today, etc.
Or when we are going somewhere in the car. Do you enjoy the journey or are you concentrating on arriving? I decided to enjoy the journey. And so it was with this exhibit and preparing work for it.
Instead of thinking and drafting ideas and proceeding to carry out the design on a surface, I let the process just happen. In the case of the image above, I mixed colors and began covering the surface, enjoying the application of spreading the cold wax & oil medium with squeegee, scratching in it with palette knives, and applying different colors with brushes and palette knives. And it began to evolve.
As to the piece on the left, Bird at Riverbank, I had found a piece of routed wood and thought it reminded me of a river. I then took some copper I had and torched it to bring out colors, hammered it to give it texture and molded it onto the routed wood. I found some small pieces of enamels I had done awhile ago, when I was making small little bowls and thought they kind of looked like rocks in a river, so there it was. Attached the enameled cups upside down to the copper. Each part on this artwork had already be fashioned previously. Looking around my studio in different boxes where I place completed pieces, certain pieces popped into mind they wanted to reside on this new piece of art. Thus came the fired clay pieces, leather string and feathers.
I used the title of our exhibit as my medium to create. They all came about serendipitous, mindfulness-ly, you might say. No pre-thought. Just being in the moment. Maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of my thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment. And so it was with all the other pieces in the show. The first show in which I never had any stress when working on it.