I feel that art has something to do with the achievement of stillness in the midst of chaos. A stillness which characterizes prayer, too, and the eye of the storm. I think that art has something to do with an arrest of attention in the midst of distraction. – Saul Bellow
We live in chaotic times. It seems like the whole world is out of control. What’s worse — there is little we can do about it.
It’s at times like these that it’s comforting to be an artist.
What we know
There is something mystical about painting. Those of you who are painters know what I mean. You’ve experienced it. When you try to explain those feelings to non-artist friends, they look at you like a deer in the headlights. You struggle to find words to describe the experience.
What words would you use to describe the exhilaration of accomplishing a feat like standing on the top of the world in the thin air of Everest?
How do you communicate the emotions you feel from a Beethoven symphony with someone who has never heard an orchestra?
Words for emotions
We find it difficult to substitute words for emotions.
We also know that painters experience something like a break in the space-time continuum. Time stands still. Hours become minutes. Stop painting and time returns to normal. It’s kind of freaky when you think about it.
Research shows that the process of painting creates a state of happiness in we humans. It is unlike any other creative pursuit. As human beings, we are happiest when we are painting.
What I dream of is an art of balance, of purity and serenity devoid of troubling or depressing subject matter – a soothing, calming influence on the mind, rather like a good armchair which provides relaxation from physical fatigue. — Matisse
I read a story about a famous pianist who had crippling arthritis. He was in constant pain. His hands curled into tight, painful fists. Yet, when he sat at the piano, his fingers uncurled as they began to fly across the keyboard. He could sit at the piano for hours, without pain, and play like the virtuoso he used to be.
We have a student in our Master Class who had a stroke and has pain on one side of his body. He told us in the evenings when the pain gets too bad, he arises and goes to his studio to paint. He said when he paints; the pain is gone.
Painting is one of the few miracles we can experience every day if we want.
It is one of those things that allows us a moment of peace in a chaotic world. Painting enables us to express ourselves in a way that is our own.
The next time you feel like your world is out of control, head to your studio. Pick up your brush and paint. Find your soul on the canvas and share it with others through your art. Create order out of the chaos that intrudes on your world.
For those of you who have not tried painting because you don’t think you can do it, we’re here to say you can! We promise! Join us as we take you on your journey of self-expression.