Have you ever dreamed of making something with your hands and then allowed your fears or lack of training to stop you?
It happened to me several years ago when I started dreaming of painting. I was afraid to try it because I had never attended art school. My perspective changed after I started working with a master artist during my tenure as an artist-in-residence for Smith Center for Healing and the Arts at Howard University Hospital. The master artist happened to be a patient I was assigned to work with on creative projects that would help him express his feelings. He transformed our sessions into art workshops where he taught me to trust my intuition and natural creative gifts. He pushed me to paint and gave me numerous painting assignments. This experience helped me create a series of paintings that I used to illustrate two book covers (see paintings above and below). The master artist breathed life into my creative dreams.
Has anyone breathed life into your creative dreams?
How did the person breathe life into your creative dreams?
What creative actions were you inspired to take?
Visit Amazon.com to learn more about my creative journey and book, That Which Awakens Me: A Creative Woman’s Poetical Memoir of Self-Discovery (2009). My book is available as a Kindle download and a paperback book.
Every person is born with a spark of creativity that can awaken them to an amazing life. Throughout my life’s journey, I have witnessed my spark of creativity expand through the nurturing support of other artists. Today, I am remembering Tasko Bey, an amazing master artist I met while working as an artist-in-residence for Smith Center for Healing and the Arts at Howard University Hospital. When I met Tasko, he was a patient living with cancer and a graduate student in Howard University’s Master of Fine Arts program. Prior to attending Howard, his work was exhibited at the Corcoran Gallery of Art. Our first expressive arts sessions turned into a mini workshop where he served as a teacher and coach. He even gave me homework. For the next two years, he utilized our sessions as teaching moments. In 2005, he urged me to pick up a pencil and draw and use a paint brush to paint my first series of paintings. He showed me how to tap into my intuition for creative guidance and encouraged me to experiment with watercolor, gouache, and acrylic painting.
I fell in love with acrylic paints. As a result, I created a series of paintings that I later used to illustrate my book covers for Love’s Troubadours – Karma: Book One and That Which Awakens Me: A Creative Woman’s Poetical Memoir of Self-Discovery. One of my favorite paintings from this series is “That Which Awakens Me: Kreative Grooviness.” See photo above. It hangs in my sunny yellow kitchen and reminds me of Tasko and his passionate love of art. Click here to watch a video about the painting (starts with an introduction to another painting and some of my collages) and my art studio. Enjoy!
Do you draw or paint?
Who or what inspired you to begin drawing or painting?
What a beautiful day it has been! I spent it at an urban retreat held at one of my favorite U Street sanctuaries, Smith Farm Center for Healing and the Arts (www.smithfarm.com).
The retreat was organized for Smith Farm artists-in-residence who work at local hospitals. I joined Smith Farm in 2001. I started working in the hospital setting in January 2003. Howard University Hospital was the first place I worked. I have also conducted workshops at Washington Hospital Center’s Cancer Conferences, Holy Cross Hospital’s Breast Cancer Support Groups, and the annual conferences held by the Society for the Arts in Healthcare (www.thesah.org).
Smith Farm is an amazing place to work. The organization always takes care of its artists with retreats and professional development workshops. We are always learning and growing. That’s why I love my Smith Farm family!
The urban retreat began with an amazing writing workshop. Eight of us had a great time writing poetry and journaling exercises. We also shared our thoughts. Right before we lunch we experienced a wonderful gentle yoga session. My favorite part was the yoga nidra. That was the piece de resistance for me. I felt like I was melting away! Yoga yummy! We had a yummy healthy lunch while we held our December meeting and shared our latest news. I left feeling more relaxed and open to the holiday season and 2010!