Which Do You Want?

Every Holiday Season, I avoid being in the hustle and bustle as much as I can. Sitting in backed-up traffic, waiting in long lines and being subjected to others’ frayed nerves aren’t my favorites. But last year around this time I received one of those orange cards in the mail, telling me there was a package that was too big to fit in my mailbox. If I wanted it, I needed to go stand in line at the Post Office to get it.

I went early the next morning. Two lines were open with only two people in front of me. Luck was on my side because within minutes of staking my claim as third in line I turned around to see many more people had filed in behind me taking the line to the front entrance door.

You know how it is when you’re in line. You stare, unblinking at whoever is ahead of you being helped. The woman in the left line needed four money orders which we all knew would take a long, long time. The lady in the right line only needed stamps but she was unaware of anyone else but herself as she deliberated over which to buy. The growing masses of which I was a member began to hold court with raised eyebrows and shaking heads.

Gripping my orange card and feeling myself beginning to become what I so try to avoid this time of year, I began to consciously take deeper breaths to slow my breathing. Here’s what began to shimmer.

With sheets of different stamps spread before her on the counter, the Postal Clerk in an effort to expedite, asked, “Which do you want? Snowflakes, Religious or Charlie Brown?

She studied them longer. All eyes were on her willing her to make a decision. “Snowflakes,” she finally said as if concluding it was the least offensive of the three.

The seasonal stamp had been selected. Moving on to the Forever options, the Postal Clerk maintained his momentum with an alternate choice question. “Do you want “Regular Forever or Christmas Forever?”

“Christmas will be okay,” she said as if she were accepting a gift she really didn’t want.

I was relieved to be next and presented my orange card. The Postal Clerk disappeared and arrived back in minutes. I scurried away even quicker with promised package in hand and the memory of this encounter that has stayed with me through this past year.

What do we want this season? The peace of falling snowflakes, the bedrock of religious church values or the light-hearted humor of Charlie Brown?the-lord-is-come-2-25-06-copy

While I’m usually more than ready to put away the commercial tinsel of this Holiday and get back to the regular order of things, I choose Christmas Forever on a deeper level. Which do you want? Regular Forever or Christmas Forever? Hurry now, there are others waiting in line behind you.

Reprinted from Yadkin Valley Living Nov/Dec. 2016

The Lord Is Come, Watercolor, is one of my earlier works and a longtime favorite.

 

Call Of The Wild

Beginning to follow a pull to paint animals and birds. Not domesticated, but wild. Introducing the Call Of The Wild Series. Feels energizing.

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The Leading Muse

Auction Info: Barn Owl (sold)

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Red Fox In Process. (sold)

See finished painting and auction info at: Red Fox

Follow the Call Of The Wild Journey: June Rollins ART

The road of life twists and turns and no two directions are ever the same. Yet our lessons come from the journey, not the destination. – Don Williams, Jr.

Encouraged To Continue…

I don’t paint as much as I used to and I don’t post on this blog as much as I used to either. I’m not as active on social media sites as I once was and this year I declined teaching workshops. It’s not that I don’t want to do any of these activities, it’s that my schedule has changed, as in, I have a job. A full-time, fun, interesting, challenging job that pays into social security and comes with benefits like medical, vision and dental insurance, life insurance and a matching 401K. A job I am very grateful to have. And do I miss my free as a little bird painting days? You bet.

BUT…

Here’s the other major benefit for which I am most happy. I don’t have the pressure of having to produce an income with my art, I can be a student. I can try new mediums and subjects. I can experiment and create absolutely dreadful paintings that I wouldn’t dare show anyone! I can make discoveries and I can grow.

BUT..

You don’t have any time to paint because you have a full-time job. I do if I stop doing the things I mentioned in the first paragraph. I also wake-up early, work small and have something always in process.

Plus, online art instruction abounds and is perfect for my “work when you can and at your own pace schedule.” In July of 2015 I signed  up for an online acrylic portraiture atelier with Chantel Barber and devoted the last 12months to working in acrylic. I learned a lot. My intention was to spend the next 12 months in traditional oils, but after 4 days and a constant headache I’ve reconsidered.

This past week, I’ve felt drawn back to watercolor. Portraits in watercolor. Direct sketching on the paper. Working at a high tilt and letting the washes mix and mingle…there have been lots of throw aways and much angst. I’ve been here before and given up. But today, I had a breakthrough. I painted something I love….which encouraged me to share it with you and encourage you to continue too. Whatever your circumstances, continue doing what you love.

"Love," 5x7, Watercolor, © June Rollins

“Love,” 5×7, Watercolor, © June Rollins

See this painting and others in my DPW Gallery

 

 

When There’s Nothing To Lose…

There’s usually a discovery to be made.

If we take action.

After very carefully and intentionally working on and completing a painting in 2 days, I had some left-over paint on my palette. I would normally toss the residual paint and prepare a new palette for the next thoughtfully and painstakingly planned painting. Not this time. With gesso as my friend to completely cover up whatever mess I would make, I marshaled forward with a devil-may-care, nothing to lose approach…

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In 20 minutes instead of 2 days, this emerged. Not my usual, but I’m encouraged. I’m also clueless for a title. *If you have a suggestion, feel free to comment here, or on June Rollins ART. And if so moved, she is up for auction at my DPW Gallery.

*Thanks to Helene Cossette for suggesting the title, “Trusting My Intuition.” Helene said, that is what I did when creating this painting. Thanks to all who suggested titles.

Tired of being so careful, try this…

Paint like there’s nothing to lose. Don’t worry about wasting paint, paper, panel or your time on a wasted, fruitless session. Take on a devil-may-care attitude. Be bold and act as if you know what you’re doing. You just might surprise yourself🙂