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my blue period has begun

July 24, 2010

I did a painting last week where I began by playing with colors and looking for harmony. At the end, though, it looks like a whale breaching. One of my earlier paintings, also playing with colors, has a “figure” that I can’t help but see as a swimming seal. And Tethys’ Lair is clearly the sea in some fashion, albeit perhaps my personal depths more than a sea out in the world.

In today’s morning pages, I realized that several of my fiber works reference the sea as well. That delving deep into places with little or no light, where things are murky and ambiguous, seen and unseen, has been a theme for quite a while, but I didn’t realize it.

I’ve tended to go down just so far, where it starts to be scary … and then I quickly retreat to the surface, and paint happier, livelier colors, which I then juxtapose to the moodier colors, making them “safer”. But also, I now realize, diminishing their power and significance.

I’ve even been drawn to wearing blues lately. Not just blue-greens (my favorite hue), but deeper blues like cobalt and indigo. Even though they don’t flatter my warm-coloring, I’ve been seeking them out, and finding comfort immersed in them. Which I realized just now.

I’ve been afraid of my own power, my own richness, my own complexity. I need to descend to the depths, and stay down exploring my self as long as necessary. Even if I’m scared, especially if I’m scared. Where there’s fear, there’s power.

I’m off to swim, then dive, into the deep blue sea…

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