I can’t believe I have not given up this daily challenge I started for myself on January 1st. I have now painted more than 100 small (4×6″/10x15cm) and can see it with different eyes than when I began.
I do love going to the Studio every day, and see how the daily Nixie will unfold. I believe in the power of stories, told and untold, screamed or whispered, subtle or obvious.
But to be honest, I have not been consistent in my painting practice. I always create several pieces at the same time (who likes to stare at the paint while it is drying ? not me) and regularly play in my art journal in between as well. But then, I did not paint every day and it started to bother me. Not because I thought I was supposed to paint everyday (hey, it is my job to make art and share it with the world so if I don’t paint… I have nothing to share) but it felt heavy in my heart, that little Inner Voice telling me I needed to make more art, my art is what heals me and it was time to mend the wounds.
What having a daily creative practice is teaching me.
- First, showing up is the first step to everything. I decided to start that project to avoid finding excuses not to step in my Studio. It is often too easy to find excuses not to go in the Studio and work/paint. This is one of the things with working from home: distractions and excuses are everywhere if we let them be.
- I let go of my expectations. I do not plan my paintings, or barely. It starts with a word, a feeling, an intention. No composition in my head as I start. However, I usually have high expectations regarding the end result. It should like this. I should feel this way when I look at it. And so on. And this creates big blocks, when I think about it. But now, after doing it everyday, I noticed a shift in how I approach it. I have my rituals (I can talk more about it if you’re interested)
- I can commit. And knowing this is big to me. I tend to start projects that finish abandoned for various reasons. Every day, after my daily Nixie is complete, I take a deep exhale and know in my bone she was meant to be BUT I am the one who made her happen.
- I am a human channel receiving messages from above. It sounds strange, weird or whatever but this is a truth I (re)discovered thanks to this practice. I have no more doubt about the fact that when I paint, I get into a certain state and receive the inspiration and teachings I need right at that moment. And that the Nixies are not just meant for me, they are created to be shared until the person they belong to finds her and welcome her home. I care about each, they are a piece of my Soul without being mine.
The more negative side of have a daily creative practice (to me).
- I fear that eventually, all my paintings will look or feel the same. That I won’t have anything new coming out of me because I would have done it all already. Well, I know that is bullshit but it is still a fear that appears now and then.
- It makes a LOT of paintings eventually, taking a lot of physical space in my Studio. Scanning and putting them for sale means spending a huge amount of time and energy into it. I sell them for a flat price ($49 USD) and they all are the same size of surface but still… doing this is something I dread, I won’t lie.
- Some days, I just don’t want to paint a face, a Nixie. That’s just how it is. Some days, I go in my Studio and just want to play in my art journal, or play with texture in colors. But I push it and paint a Nixie anyway. Part of the experiment is to go beyond my boundaries and blocks.
A few Nixies that showcase how different they all are from each other: