Tuesday, July 14, 2009

July 14th 2009
The past few days I have been feeling like I couldn't put two sentences together and didn't have anything to say. This morning I woke up feeling better, went to put on some music and thought of "The Song Of Bernadette" by Aaron Neville. I first heard this song at Music On The Beach at English Bay, put on by a lovely man called Brock Tully every monday evening from June to September. I was so touched by the song I have played it over and over and find it so healing and tender. This morning on YouTube I found a video by an amateur that I like better. It's called: The Song Of Bernadette sonnenberg. I tried to figure out how to put the video on my blog but it's a bit beyond me at the moment. It is also sung by Leonard Cohen and Jennifer Warrens. Please listen to this as my gift to you today. It is a beautiful song of unconditional love.

On Saturday we held a yard sale to raise funds for our social club and were very successful. When we were done we stored all the remaining stuff in a corridor near the storage lockers. Between 5pm on Saturday and 3pm on Sunday, someone went in and stole most of it. I feel so sad that someone would do something with such intentional vindictiveness, when the proceeds were going to benefit everyone who lives here. Ah well, it takes all kinds I guess and they must have felt they needed more than everyone else.

I have been processing the feelings I have around my creativity and because it has seemed like it was all I had to hold onto the past few years, there is a feeling of desperation about it. Because of my age, I feel like I don't have a lot of years left to learn the skills I need and because it has felt like it is all I have left to hold on to, I have to do it. It often feels like I'm driven and have to do it and sometimes it feels like a monkey on my back instead of something joyful and relaxing. I really want to let go of this feeling of desperation and understand at that deeper level that it is not the only thing I have to hold on to. I think having lost my life as I knew it came with such an overwhelming feeling of being out of control that I had to have some part of me that was still there. It was like I disappeared and could no longer see myself and if I could just hold onto the artist part of myself I wouldn't disappear altogether.

There is another level that holds me back from expressing myself artisitically and that is the fear of showing who I am. That deep level of the fear of rejection that most of us have and the shame of exposing ourselves because our art is really a soul expression, exposing the deepest part of ourselves and a rejection of that can be devastating.

I have always been very good at copying things. When I was about twelve years old I decided to copy the inside cover of our encyclopedia. It was a picture of a group of men sitting around, doing something intellectual, I guess (no women there) - I don't remember it very clearly, however, I asked my Dad how to block it off and asked for permission to block off the picture in the encyclopedia (by blocking off, I mean drawing squares on the picture and then on the paper I was drawing on). I was very proud of how well I had drawn this picture and then wanted to paint it but didn't know how to paint. I asked my Day (he was an artist) but didn't really get an answer and got no help. It was drawn on poster board and so when I went to paint it with a watercolor paint box it got messed up. I was so disappointed. Anyway, the point is I was copying back then, copied cartoons and things and copied out of a book my parents bought called "It's Fun To Draw". It was about ten years ago when I got tired of copying and wanted to express myself in my art and that is when the difficulty started. What is there in me that wants to be expressed? Is what comes from within me just rubbish? Do I dare expose my innermost feelings and who I really am? I look at the beautiful, funky, wonderful stuff everyone else does and mine is so boring. Am I really just a very boring person?

But, when all is said and done, I really can't stop myself. As I said in the poem I wrote, I tried to rub out my face but I couldn't and as Anais Nin said: "The time came when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom."

Blessings to everyone in your creative endeavors. You are loved!


  1. Leone I can so relate to your feelings and fears.
    Here I am 57, estranged somewhat from my siblings, my children have flown the coop and yes, I do have a lowely hubbyy, but so miss friends and my past life (we moved here when we married.
    I could say I am a pretty good copyist as well, but I am trying to be creative. (Check out my last post - there is a personality test I took and it really did make sense. I need to create - it does not have to be famous! What a relief. I can just have at it and create. It has made a difference.
    I love your work and your photos and your honest heart. Keep creating - there are many who love what you share.

  2. Boring? I don't think you see things the same way as me. I find nothing boring on your blog and definitely not your art... I fear you may be being a bit to hard on yourself...

  3. I second Rose's comment...I usually do, don't I? Ever seen us together? Nope! Hmmmmm....*grin*

    Truly you are a beautiful soul and I am so glad I found your little patch of wonderfulness here. I see only beauty and talent and an immense creativity when I look at your paintings and your photographs...I can't imagine that you'd be seeing any different...

    I'm reading a really great book right now..actually working through it as a book club thing..The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron -- I just emailed Rose about it -- I feel like a bit of an evangelist with this thing at the moment!! --but it made me think of so many of us and our struggles with accepting our artistic impulses and how to unblock our creativity..and not in some vague, airy-fairy sort of way -- actual tools and exercises...

    Anyway..I'm blathering...if you're interested..drop me a note


    or leave me a comment and I'll send you the link to the group....


  4. Leone, you are definitely creative - the work you have posted here, even the juxtaposition of bud and bloom you frame your post with, attest to that. I'm sensing that there's more back there that you haven't trusted yourself - or the world - to express. You talk about the break with your past - perhaps you could put images to some of that hard stuff (keep it as private as you need to), and see what happens on the inside and the outside. Or put your dreams into tangible images, and see what emotions flow from that work. For me, creativity is soul-work, not making an artifact for anyone else. Blessings!