When asked about how I spend my time as a working artist, I've come to appreciate the natural and necessary distinctions that have come to define my years working on Flower and Vine -- time spent "working", and time spent "playing". Don't get me wrong, I'm forever grateful to be in the small category of people that get to claim their job as "unicorn space" -- my job gives me energy and life, and I see the vast majority of tasks as more fun than work. Yet still, I'm human. Meaning that even though I savor the months-long projects that come to completion, or the client that beams upon delivery of a commissioned project, or the reorder from a wholesale account across the country, I still crave space to be creative within my creativity.
Enter my "art for play" time.
This is art that I've created purely for the sake of creating. I always know that one day I may want to offer these projects up for sale, but they are not painted with the pressure or intention that the time spent on them must be accounted for or recouped. Recently, I've set aside Friday afternoon nap times as my "art for play" time -- 2-3 hours of sacred time while my precious kiddos nap, when I've gotten my paints out, possibly posted up outside, and started painting with little planning or structure.
And so, "The Peace of Wild Things" collection is now available on my site here
. These paintings are whimsical, impressionist in style, each distinct from the other, and simply put FUN. Some are painted using oil paints, some with acrylic. Two of them incorporate used coffee grounds to give a special texture that I absolutely loved playing around with. Some are painted all the way around the edges and others are framed. I once had a friend comment that my paintings had a distinct yet cohesive color palette, style, and softness to them. I've held that and appreciated her words. These paintings were created at different times of the year, and even in different seasons of life (hello pre and post kids!). I hope that you enjoy looking at them, and hope that they find the right homes on whatever journey this story takes!
Lastly, a topic for another day, this poem by Wendell Berry which inspired the name behind this collection. Enjoy and be free.
The Peace of Wild Things
When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.