THE ART OF HUMILITY: THE PORTRAIT OF DORIAN GRAY BY OSCAR WILDE

Disclaimer: this is a post with a political opinion that is my own. Please do not continue if you agree with President Trump’s recent comments on Charlottesville. I accept everyone’s right to their beliefs.

My blog is an artist blog and after the events of Charlottesville last weekend I saw the President in an Oscar Wilde novel called “The Portrait of Dorian Gray”. It’s a classic story of a corrupt narcissistic young man who barters a deal with the devil to remain youthful and handsome forever. It’s a story of “it’s better to look good than feel good “. Dorian Gray has no humility. A wealthy society man who cares only about himself he commissions a portrait of himself. He fantasizes about how great it would be if he could remain youthful while the painting would age as each year passes.

I recommend the 1945 film with George Sanders and Hurd Hatfield as Dorian Gray.

Dorian and Trump are no different and I am watching the President deteriorate as each day passes. Dorian becomes more self centered and corrupt. He is engaged to a society woman but she is too proper to deflower before marriage. He engages a lower class show girl to satisfy his sexual needs lying about his intention to marry her. When she becomes pregnant he murders her. His portrait meanwhile gets more grotesque as he becomes more evil. He hides the painting in the attic to avoid seeing the truth of who he is.

I see this happening to Trump. The murder of Heather Heyer is the blood on his hands because he has dog whistled the neo nazis, the white supremacists and the Ku Klux Klan to become bolder. And how narcissistic of Trump to not acknowledge her death. To not go to Charlottesville to speak to her parents. He said more good things about the extremists and not one word about Heather. SHAME ON YOU NARCISSISTIC TRUMP. YOUR PORTRAIT IS SHOWING YOUR SINS.

MIND OF AN ARTIST: STUDY A BLADE OF GRASS

My mind is a monkey mind.

I know it's my ADHD. There is a quality of my life that resembles a circus. I'm always trying to train those monkeys to perform the right way. Okay you guys get yourselves in order.

I actually become the lion tamer trying to force my creativity to perform. Not only to perform but to kick ass perform.

Here's where pressure to be a creative genius sets in. In other words here comes the artist block! I HAVE TO DO THE BEST PAINTING OR DO NOTHING! So I do nothing.

The monkeys are doing nothing so out of boredom they start to act out. Avoidance creates havoc and chaos. I end up hating myself for being unproductive. It's a great big circus ring ready to explode.

My thinking is creativity needs to be a high experience with lots of bells and whistles going off. There's no sanity. There's no peace. Every work of art has to be created from a psychedelic experience. Don't forget I come from the original hippie lifestyle. The Magical Mystery tour. But it's becoming clear that flying by the seat of exploding pants is not working.

So that is why I am choosing to study a blade of grass. Slow down get off the merry go round. Be a quiet painter. I cannot be a superhuman artist. Study a blade of grass.

Here are plein air paintings done with the mindset of "study a blade of grass ".

START WITH A DOODLE:  WATERCOLOR PAINTING 

So again I have been in a creative block.  I was reminded of the quote by artist Chuck Close regarding artistic inspiration.  

“AMATEURS LOOK FOR INSPIRATION, THE REST OF US JUST GET UP AND GO TO WORK “

Can’t argue with that!!!   So I called upon my formula for breaking paralysis… START WITH A DOODLE!

I have a wonderful portable watercolor kit created to take anywhere.  A pouch filled with portable brushes and an assortment of wonderful pots of special paints.  An inexpensive set of watercolors.  Tiny tubes of gouache. Paper towels. And a 9″ x 12″ pad of cold pressed watercolor paper. Easy travel and easy clean up.  


Here is the doodle and I really got into working and playing the colors and the liquid flow of the medium.   And from the doodle two exciting and free expressive paintings. 



 

I’VE BEEN NOMINATED FOR THE BLOGGER RECOGNITION AWARD!!

After a month of chronic arthritis in my leg and not being able to walk I was debating if I could ever think positively again.  Forget being creative.  Of course my ADHD brain went into “I’m a failure “.  

   

Then Friday I received a comment from one of my incredible blogger followers Mitch Teemley of The Power of Story saying he nominated me for The Blogger Recognition Award!  

Check out Mitch Teemley’s blog.   https://mitchteemley.com

Amazing because a year ago I didn’t have any idea how to do a blog.  I just lost my art website because I couldn’t afford the monthly fees and it was old and needed sprucing up.  I wanted to try doing a new one with WordPress but ended up with a blog for some unknown reason.  Go figure.  So I decided to play with it and tell my story of how I came out of a 30 year artist block where I stopped doing any form of creative work until I turned 50. 

The rest is history.  I spent my school years with untreated ADHD and learning disabilities so I never understood what grammar was.  I was confused by prepositions and what the heck is a verb anyway.  I never went to college because I couldn’t take tests.  I was successful in art in High School but was afraid to pursue it.  The rest of my life was trying to make money as an ineffective secretary.  Hiding from the world and living a life unlived.  

In 2002 at the age of 50 I finally was diagnosed and treated for ADHD.  I returned to becoming the artist I was meant to be.  I am blessed to have been successful by taking risks to bring out my art.  I began selling paintings.  Doing many shows in NYC from 2010.  I lost the secretary job in 2009 and burned all my office suits that made me look like Hillary Clinton.  

Since then I have created a business “Fearless Creativity Art for Arts Sake”.  I engage people who think they have no talent that they do.  Art will save people from worry.  It saved me during my childhood trauma. 

And all this is a result of my spiritual practice. My faith is stronger then any adversary. I trust God and help others.

TIPS FROM MY BLOGGING EXPERIENCE OF THE PAST YEAR:

  1. Just have FUN.  Authenticity to share my life story of becoming the artist I was meant to be was the motivation. 
  2. Don’t try to be famous.  It was not important that the Internet world would discover my talented writing.  
  3. Forgive yourself if you fall off the writing cliff.  I would miss weeks of posting and thought I could never start again.  But I forgave my inconsistency and found that my followers didn’t judge me. 

     

    NOW I AM NOMINATING THE FOLLOWING BLOGS FOR INSPIRING ME:

    1. Certainline.wordpress.com – the art of drawing 
    2. VisualAtelier.wordpress.com – art, design,photography 
    3. Cedricramey.wordpress.com – art, travel, fashion, lifestyle 
    4. Oneblessedfool.wordpress.com – faith, freedom, imagination 
    5. Pmuink.com – Daily Doodle 
    6. Orchidslantern.wordpress.com – art and stories of life 
    7. Michaelehrhardt.wordpress.com – original art 
    8. Impliedspaces.wordpress.com – digital art 
    9. Saidsimply.wordpress.com – thoughts of life & stuff 
    10. Ambiguousbrush.wordpress.com – wonderful drawings 
    11. Storyofthefootloose.com – a talented pen writing well 
    12. Littlefears.co.uk – short stories & art
    13. Fugitivedreamblog.wordpress.com – inspiring muses of the past 
    14. Izzyink.co.wordpress.com –  a journey into the world of illustration 
    15. Histolines.wordpress.com – history 

    Blogger Recognition Award Rules

     • Thank the blogger/s who nominated you and provide a link to their blog

     • Write a post about it the Blogger Recognition Award

     • Briefly tell how your blog started

     • Give two pieces of advice to new bloggers

     • Select 15 bloggers to give this award to. 

    THANKS MITCH!!!

    PRAYER FOR OUR COUNTRY 


    Our God and God of our ancestors, we ask Your blessings upon our country, and upon the leaders of our nation and of our communities. 

    Inspire all who lead and serve to conduct their affairs honorably. May peace and security, happiness and prosperity, right and freedom abide among us. 

    Unite the inhabitants of our country, of all backgrounds and creeds so that we may banish hatred and bigotry, safeguard our noblest ideals, and pressure those institutions which nurture liberty. 

    May this land under Your Providence be an influence for good throughout the world, helping to unite all peoples in peace and freedom, and bringing closer to fulfillment the visions of Your prophets:

    “Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore. “

    “For the work of righteousness shall be peace, and the effect of righteousness calm and confidence forever. “

    Amen.

    Louis Ginsberg (adapted)




    ART – FDA APPROVED STRESS RELIEVER 

    People think art is not for them.  It is only for talented artists.  Art is mysterious.  It’s messy and too much trouble. The bottom line is art has become a unnecessary part of life.  And we have separated people into creatives and non-creatives. 

    I’m determined to address this myth and encourage people to engage in art as a way to create a balanced mind. It can be visual art, music, dancing, singing or writing.  Creativity and imagination can improve the quality of life.  

    Stop listening to the news and start doing ART!!!

    I have created a very inspirational painting class in the Bronx. 


    BEING LARGE AS AN ARTIST 

    I have been on a journey in the last year plus creating a business that promotes art for arts sake. I am a 64 year old woman artist who came out of the cave in 2009 when I was laid off of a 20 year job as a legal secretary.  I didn’t know that this was the start of being reborn. 
    I was a slave to the belief that art would never support me.  I was 50 years old when I finally broke my 30 year artist block and came back to joy of who I truly am.   I have not gone back to the security of a corporate job since. 
    THIS IS NOT AN EASY TASK!!   Especially with ADHD and learning disabilities.  However, I finally became the artist I was meant to be.   I didn’t think twice as I took the actions to be showing my work.   There were many times I was the only woman and the oldest artist in a group show.  But I knew I was a good artist. I never compared myself to others and was able to engage all the artists as comrades.  

    For the first time I stopped trying to be better than others.  I am an artist among artists.  So I can be connected with people whatever age they are.  I feel I can be any age in my mind.  I have the joy of living. 

    So my business is about engaging people to be creative.  I’m teaching iPad painting classes around the Hudson Valley in New York.  I got my first iPad in 2011 for my 60th birthday.   I found art apps and my world of creativity exploded. I have become a more prolific artist with this technology. 

    I’m the Pied Piper of iPad art and I’m finally being heard.  I was co-curator at an exhibition on digital art with a focus on iPad painting.  I’m teaching workshops at gallery.  The Riverdale Press gave a good review of the show.  The community is aware of my name.  

    Here is my mission statement for Fearless Creativity Art for Arts Sake:

    “FEARLESS CREATIVITY is about art is important for everyone. Creativity is not just for the talented.  The mission of Fearless Creativity is to engage people who believe they are not creative by participating in non-judgmental art classes using traditional art mediums and technology with iPads and smartphones.  In doing art for fun and expression they will experience a psychic change in how they are in the world.  Today’s world is a fearful place.  More than ever people experience worry and depression.  The result is high levels of cortisol consistently destroying health.  Art soothes the mind and helps us solve problems creatively.  It reduces stress and lowers cortisol so are health improves.  Our lives expand, love increases and we have hope. “

     

    Created by Jean Messner on iPad using ArtRage app

     


    ART IS EVERYWHERE!!  THE BRONX IS BEAUTIFUL!!

    Yesterday I was in a pity pot about how awful my life is.  I’ll never be successful with my creative business and I will end up living in poverty.   AND I DON’T HAVE A VALENTINE!!   HYSTERICAL!!!

    I had to meet my ex-husband in the city in -15 degree weather.  I hopped onto the 1 train and continued to cry under my two wool scarves.  Then I peered up from my hide-out and noticed a young couple across the way happy to be together on Valentines Day.  THIS CHANGED MY BRAIN!!   I ACTUALLY THOUGHT IT WAS A WONDERFUL PICTURE!!  I ASKED IF I COULD TAKE THEIR PICTURE FOR MY BLOG.  

    I FORGOT ALL MY PROBLEMS AND NOW KNOW THAT PEOPLE ARE SO MUCH A PART OF MY LIFE AND ART. 

      

    THE ART OF INSPIRING OTHERS

    imageWhat are you doing to inspire others?  When I’m in self absorbed fear I’m in trouble

    My Mind is a bad neighborhood  is yours?  Well get the hell out of Dodge NOW!!!

    I realize that when I’m looking to be inspired what I really need is to inspire someone else.  So I spent yesterday being of service to my latest fearless artist Beth Gallager.  Beth doesn’t worry about being perfect – she is so happy being in her art zone.  Doing art has enhanced her life.  Her eyes are focused on seeing the world.  She is out of the cave and alive!  By the way she jumped in and never said those pitiful words “I can’t do art I can’t draw a straight line”

    Who have you inspired lately?  An artist is responsible to encourage their communities to stop living in fear and start to enjoy their very special creative selves!

    HAPPY HOLIDAYS HERE’S BETH’S CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS TREE! DONE ON  HER IPAD WITH ART SET PRO.

     

     

    CLIMBING OUT OF THE DARKNESS OF “DOUBT ” AND ANXIETY 

      
    My mind took over last week.  So I did every self help technique written on a million mental health website. I was sucked into finding the perfect way to cure this anxiety I had.  Hours reading strategies for the monster in my head. 

    GUESS WHAT HAPPENED?

    IT GOT WORSE!

    I reached out to friends and temple members and shared my shameful mental breakdown. My community surrounded me with love.  I was safe and protected by people. That was the answer. 

    All that insanity looking for an answer from books that kept saying this is the way to get out of the mental pain caused more anxiety.   

    POSITIVE AFFIRMATIONS COULDN’T HELP ME.   PEOPLE DID. WE NEED TO DEVELOP A SUPPORT NETWORK FOR TIMES LIKE THIS.  THE HUMAN TOUCH.  

    Trying to get positive and working hard to change my thinking only made me feel more like a loser. Today I am recovering from this dark mental episode and moving forward in baby steps. I did a lot of iPad painting during the episode. Now I want to do an oil painting. I think that will help soothe my mind.