What We Do, and An Unexpected Picture

Okay, so here’s a question. Who else has multiple passions?

I’m guessing lots of people, and yet being in good company doesn’t necessarily make the balancing act any easier. In my “About Me” section, I describe myself as a painter and pastry chef, just throw it out there all casual-like. An uninformed reader might think that I have actually figured out harmony around that in my life. When in reality, what I am in the process of figuring out around that– is chaos.

Anyone else's book collection similarly muddled?

It’s hard to focus on making soup and burgers and even cake at the café when my heart is saying, paint, paint, paint. Everything I touch looks like a still life, and all I want to do is grab a piece of ticker tape and start drawing instead of making the meal that’s printed on it. Other days, I sit down with a canvas that’s begging to be finished but all the while that little voice is going, kitchen! kitchen! now! I try to think about juxtaposing shapes and colors but all I come up with is flavor combinations. Potato chip cupcakes, short rib and strawberries.

Some things have to be accomplished for life as I know it to continue. I have to show up and be positive at work; I have to feed my dog and myself; I have to spend time with my family, my love, and my friends. But outside of that, I am attempting not to dictate. The organized part of my brain intended to post a recipe for candied lemon peel that I shot earlier this week. It also intended to sit down and work on, if not finish, one or two canvases in a series I’ve been developing the last few months.

Instead, this happened:

Unknown Kente: ink, watercolor, and acrylic on paper

What is this? I’m not entirely sure. It’s a drawing, partly, but also kind of a painting, on paper. Mostly abstract, but kind of not. I can see my hands in this, but it looks nothing like the series I’ve been working on. I don’t know if it has a future…will I make friends for it; will it find its way into a show someday? Or will it just hang out by itself, commemorating the day-and-a-half when that was precisely what my heart needed to do?

I don’t know what will become of this piece, but I do know that making it allowed me to slow down and be present. While I was working, I felt content and in sync with myself and my surroundings. My hope for this drawing is that it finds its way to some one who can get out of the it some of the happiness that I put in. That’s the hope for everything I do. That hope seems most plausible when I let my heart direct what I do instead of trying to force it, whether, in any given moment, that is baking a cookie, stretching a canvas, or even making an unexpected picture.

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