Lavender

The smell of lavender calms most people down immediately. Same for other herbal scents. They give us a sense of well being.
It is important to have things that give you a focal point that can override anxiety. It can be a phrase you know or a thought about a place you love. It doesn’t matter. Whatever makes you feel the best the fastest is good to know. You can pull it out when you are under stress. Most people just are reactive to stress. But being proactive is having a plan when times are difficult. The first part of the plan could be a calming down thought or scent or whatever works for you to focus and relax. In the olden days they would carry smelling salts around in case they fainted. At least they had a plan. Most people do not have a plan. We do visualization exercises in Creative club not to be in a new age altered state trance, but simply to refocus so we can think and imagine better. You can’t think clearly if you are being 100 per cent reactive. You want to be reactive as little as possible. You cant do anything without a plan because I guarantee any journey is full of obstacles and annoyances. A proactive plan for every circumstance will make the overwhelming seem just like a change to do something new. I heard of a family that lost their house in forclosure. They lost everything. The unexpected result was happiness. They had less to worry about now and could start over. And starting over is always a fantastic opportunity to do something new and better.

Um…I don’t think so.

the power of saying no to things you want to do but are not in your mission statement is equal to the time you have to do the things that are on your mission statement. This may seem like an obvious thing but when you actually break it down it is freedom to fly. Each time you say no to something that would really be a diversion you give importance to your life mission statement.
Making it a habit to use every minute to fullfill what you were put on earth to do is not tiresome. It will fill you with more energy than you know what to do with. It is the diversions that lead to monotony. If you get off work and are really tired and want to “Veg out”, you will be even more tired. It is the opposite of what you think. We relax by doing what gives us energy.

knowing when to stop

There was a tee shirt I saw in the eighties that said “Art is knowing when to stop. ” That is so true. How many paintings have I taken it just a tad too far and then lost the quality I was looking for all day. And once you have lost it, it is impossible to find it again just the way it was.

If a painting paints itself quickly and is perfect and mind blowing and I can’ t believe it, the best thing to do is walk away from it . Do not look at it again and think well maybe just one more thing.  Leave it be .

That painting will be better than anything you have struggled over for days. Tomorrow I will do nine paintings at once. That way I won’t have time to ruin them. I will tell you the result of no time to get me involved. They will have to paint themselves without any help from  me.

Women

People often ask me why I only paint women.
Well why does anybody paint anything. It is compelling to me and never gets old but only gets more interesting the more I paint them. Women have everything I love. They are curvy and that curve is repeated all over their face and body. I am painting that curve over and over and I also include it in the background over and over in all my work.
I am in love with that simple curve. Men have a different curve. They are more angular and well masculine.
You should paint what you see that maybe nobody else sees and if you look you will find the simple curve that compels me to work all day. Look for the curve in everything I do.