Sometimes we don’t even know what we need until we are in the midst of a moment…
That happened to me today. A slow waking from an uneasy night of sleep… my head has been full lately and those who know me well know the depth of thought I am wading through. Grey clouds above, the sun slow to lighten sky.
Encouraged, like a whisper past my ear, for the first time in weeks I pick up my paintbrush and begin to paint. It feels natural, comforting, familiar. Splashes of color dance across the paper, wet brush dipping in palette pan, dabbing off excess paint, laying down layers. Yes, I know this road. Then, I reach for ink. I add depth and line and detail. Water pooling, tide receding, toes sinking. Meditative, this moment. I am lost in it.
A special photograph inspires me along…I instinctively know the journey the pen needs to make. It is a beautiful thing to feel and symbolic in more ways than one.
After some time, I notice my heart beat…slowing, my breathing…regular and relaxed. I recognize a soft smile at lips edge and notice the return of the sun. In this moment, I feel calm, happy and deeply grateful and I embrace the mystery of the road that lies ahead ~
Original Ink and Watercolor ©Michelle Rummel
“As happens sometimes, a moment settled and hovered and remained for much more than a moment. And sound stopped and movement stopped for much, much more than a moment.” ~ John Steinbeck
Painted a couple of years ago and intended as a quick study…a loose play of graphite line and a splash of watercolor on paper, a moment was all it took to capture the essence of what I was feeling. The camera wasn’t so lucky….paper saturated, buckled, like my knees and so you’ll simply have to imagine it more cleanly than the shadowy image actually presents here.
The night I painted this, I fell asleep with still images of this painting scrolling through my mind. I saw this piece and others like it, large…larger than anything I have ever painted before. A big canvas, with her colors splashed and dripping and flowing. It’s been years since I’ve painted with acrylics or oils, but I can’t help but feel like this was a clear sign leading the way…time will tell. Anyone who knows me well knows that I tend to shy away from clearly marked paths. Sometimes, it’s hard to be me.
*I just need a moment…*
I have uttered this phrase often in my real world life…significant, those 5 words, when spoken. Please let me catch my breath, refocus my mind, regain clarity, pause….or…float;) a while in peace. We all have these moments, they are not mine alone. Universal, I believe, the overwhelming need to occasionally lay down in the clay… let your colors drip and flow and let the earth absorb your raw emotion and cradle you, for just a moment…or two.
Original Watercolor ©Michelle Rummel