You may know of a Doctor or Lawyer who provide “pro bono” services, but have you ever heard of an Artist who paints for FREE? Well, that’s my philosophy!
I am most inspired when I’m inspired. Shocking, I know. Personally, there is nothing more depressing than committing to a piece of art that lives in someone else’s imagination. If I can’t “see it” and “feel it” with my mind’s eye, then I don’t want to do it! Flaky as it may be, I am motivated by my emotions. I want to devote myself to peaceful contemplation, turning off all the noise…the things I want, the things others expect from me, the pressure I put on myself. Doing this provides me with entrance to a new expression…the variety of a singular focus. one purpose. one someone. one master. pumping life into my heart.
Basically, I have discovered that I must provide my services for FREE.
However, this doesn’t mean that others can take advantage of me. Nor should anyone submit their name for there is no list. It actually just means that I will ask God who is on His mind and what He wants to say. Then I will paint. Then I will give. No strings attached.
With each piece I give away, the sad feeling is quickly replaced by the honor and blessing that it is to give. Because there is a personal message in each painting, I have the best job in the world: to give gifts to others that will be a reminder on their walls that they are loved.
It all started one day when a young girl’s pencil showed a glowing inclination towards the artistic. Others began to see and be inspired by her talent, asking her to create their ideas for them. She did, and she made money. Although proud, she felt incomplete, like there was something more she wanted to do with her gift. One day, another request for a very specifically oriented painting was commissioned. Again, she made the painting. This time, however, the piece was rejected. She didn’t want them to feel obligated to pay her, but she had done the work. Empty, with the painting still in her hands…and now the relationship was strained.
She longed to find inspiration again, but she would struggle. This time, she decided that meant going to Art College. Her father is not in favor; however, caring too much about her physical needs to allow her to “starve in the alley” as he perceived often happens to artists. She struggled for years to understand that didn’t mean he didn’t believe she could make it. He was just trying to take care of her the best he knew how.
Years go by with little- to no- painting. What she does paint is gifted to others. She feels somewhat appreciated but mostly uninspired and depressed. Other talents move in like storms, and she throws herself into writing music and plays, which draw out a new type of creativity and purpose that she once dreampt of having.
On the day her grandmother died, she finished a painting that had waited for years. It was a symbolic painting of herself, and the beginning of a new season. Although her grandma had died, it felt as though fresh life had been breathed into her, unexplainable, and beautiful.
Shortly after that time, she was at her brother-in-law’s house. She was visiting, sipping coffee and eating dessert when it hit her. She was overcome by inspiration–and told them that she MUST make a painting for that bare spot over their mantel! One condition…she
could not would not do it for money. That way there would be no sadness if it were rejected, they would only give it back, and she would try it somewhere else.
Well, that painting was finished only a few days ago, and here I am…building a philosophy around that amazing feeling you get when your gift touches someone else’s heart.
So there it is.
Surrender is good; vulnerability beautiful. Emotions too, can be poured out like paint.
“The purposes of a person’s heart are deep waters,
but one who has insight draws them out.”