Through my work I am exploring mindfulness through drawing. I use both abstract and observational drawing to get control over my thoughts, release old thought patterns and gain awareness, through the focus of drawings, which allows me to be in the present moment.
I became interested in Mindfulness because as a dyslexic person (read my dyslexic story) I found that my thoughts were erratic, compulsive and would jump from one thought to the next. I did not know how to still my thoughts or explore them at a deeper level, I felt I worked at a superficial level which was reflected in my art.
However, I also found that my thoughts could be equally creative as they were erratic. I explored this on my Masters, as I researched the creative process (read my Masters story). I found that the creative process involves two types of thought; visual (abstract) and verbal (logical), and that they each can be nurtured and that they need to work together, each with their own role, like a conversation, to reach a creative outcome/creative potential. I nurture my logical understanding through reading (book list) which provides structure for and allows my abstract, freer nature of thinking, to progress.
My Mindfulness drawings mirror the creative process with both verbal and visual thoughts playing a role. The pieces are a conversation between superficial thoughts and the witnessing present which is drawn out through the creation of labyrinths and repetitive circles. The conversations are visual representations of my thoughts with layers and secrets, often hidden. I learn a lot about myself through gaining insights about my thoughts, feelings and anything that may need to be healed or let go of. The works go from organic, almost ephemeral forms to exploring the use of contrasting structures and boundaries as I play with the idea of paper as a safe place.
My work has evolved to using observational drawing as a form of mindfulness, with the structure of form acting as a focus for drawing, from an awareness point of view. It is through drawing that I am learning to see which leads to been present and mindful.
The subject of my drawings, mouths and eyes, are what I am drawn to through my daily interactions. I find that I look at these most throughout the day and through drawing them I am able to focus and be grounded in the present moment when interacting and speaking to people, improving relationships.
My Eye and Lip drawings show the different ways I am learning to see, and tools I engage with such as grids and squares. The works through their repetitive nature show how I am deconstructing reality to its basic elements in order to understand how to see, to be present. The works show how I explore the differences between boundaries and natural points of focus and the effect it upon the process, eventually returning to my most natural form expression which involves both visual and verbal expression, as seen with the meditation drawings. The colour usage in my works emphasises the point of returning back to basics, using just warm and cool variations of the primaries to express and understand the observed colours.