Sunday, January 6, 2013

Bird of Possibility

My painted blackbird

This blackbird is a diversion from what I've come to consider my painting style.  Typically I have many layers of paint that eventually come together.  This blackbird just appeared quickly and I like the simplicity of it.  I can't bring myself to change it.

One of the things I discovered in my painting this week is my tendency to not want to mess things up.  To not take risks because I might make it worse.  To stay in a place that seems comfortable instead of pushing forward.  Then I noticed how many ways I stay stuck because things are "ok" and I don't want to make them worse.  

But in staying comfortable, I close the door on what's possible.  On what might be spectacular.  Staying with "ok" because I don't want to make it worse, is FEAR whispering in my ear.  Painting is a safe space to practice taking risks.  Being bold.  Messing it up.  It doesn't matter. What matters is what you're discovering.  Like you've been living in fear and haven't even noticed. 

Where are you settling for ok in your own life?  Where are you nervous to take risks for fear of making things worse?  Where are you willing to open a little to let the possibilities pour in?

Pick up a paintbrush with a child like heart and no attachment to the outcome, and see what you discover.


My daughter's IPAD version in Drawcast
Some quick research on black bird symbolism from What's your sign:

Birds robed in black do not give up their secrets easily. They love to watch us marvel over their messages. Black birds demand our commitment to learning their wisdom, and do not reveal their meanings unless they are convinced we've devoted ourselves completely to the path of understanding (both dark and light sides of) energy. 


This is a fundamental concept of alchemy which is: Transition and Transformation. The bird is symbolic of life in the heavens (higher ideals, higher path of knowing) and the color black is symbolic of pure potential. Between the two, there is no limit to human transformation - all we have to do is close the shutters of the rational mind, and start sojourning with our darkly feathered friends.
Black birds (in general) are archetypes of living life in higher realms, and are symbolic of:
  • Higher Intelligence
  • Higher Thought
  • Higher Ideals

4 comments:

alifeprofound said...

"One of the things I discovered in my painting this week is my tendency to not want to mess things up. To not take risks because I might make it worse. To stay in a place that seems comfortable instead of pushing forward. Then I noticed how many ways I stay stuck because things are "ok" and I don't want to make them worse. "

Oh, yes, i am nodding my head ... how many times have I stood before my paintings, brush dripping, so scared to make the next mark that is calling to me, it keeps me settling for ok or good enough when the painting is clearly calling for so much more.

What life lessons we learn from this process!
Thank you for taking this journey with me, for sharing the lessons, for letting me know that I am not alone in the sometimes struggle. We can celebrate overcoming together.

Kelly Raye said...

Thank you Cynthia! I'm glad to know I'm not alone either, figuring this all out on my own. So good to have people who can relate. I look forward to celebrating in Sedona!

Jay said...

Oh, I think we all have this fear holding us back. We produce something good and we are afraid to make even one more mark in case we destroy it. I've been working on that recently.

After decades of only doing a little art - with pencils, pen, paint etc - and staying well within my comfort zone of pencils and ink on paper, I am doing the Illustration Friday challenge. I have set myself an additional challenge of trying new media, so last week I attempted an acrylic painting for the first time in my life. Have to say that was difficult, and I nearly made a mess of him and gave up several times. But by keeping on at him and trying different things, I finally ended up with an acceptable result. It's not great, but it's better than I've managed before, so that - to me - is a good result!!

I love your little blackbird. He has freshness and spontaneity. In this case, I think you were right not to overwork him. I also love your daughter's painting, which is different and yet not different. There is still freshness and spontaneity!

Kelly Raye said...

Jay, I love that you're trying new things. I'm at a stage of just immersing myself in everything I can get my hands on. I'm having a sort of creative awakening and I just can't get enough of it. This weekend I had people come to my house and we learned basic jewelry making, which I'm loving now too. So much out there, I just told my husband that I need to take some time off of work to just explore. Thank you for your comments on the little birds.