Saturday, January 30, 2010

What I Learned Today In Art Class

Well, I have started art classes. I used to paint when I was in 3rd grade at Mrs. Bereskin's house. I loved going to paint class, and actually the watercolor of the lighthouse I did in 3rd grade is probably better than anything I could pull off now. I dabbled in art again my senior year of high school, but college came and the artsy side of my brain was put on hold for the academic side (I refrained from saying the "creative" side of my brain because I think sociologists have to be extremely creative). Anywho, I decided since I had a bit o' free time that I would get a new hobby (or I guess in this case rekindle the old one). Maybe meet some new friends, you never know (although: side note--it turns out I have the hobbies of an elderly person, as nearly every extracurricular activity I have gotten involved in here has resulted in me being the youngest person in the room by about 25 years). So, I began painting classes. It's been a great experience, and has brought out things in me I didn't even know I could do, which is why I love art. I drew a very nice picture of a vase my first day and a glass jar with some cous cous in it my second class. I'm now working on my first painting EVER: a rendering of a famous painting by Hopper. It turns out that painting is a very spiritual experience. People have always said this, but I never understood it until I experienced it. Today there I was painting away and my teacher said something that struck me: she said something to the effect of how it is amazing that painting can satisfy the soul so much...that people simply love to create. And it made me think that maybe this is because we are mimicking our own Creator. It was just a thought I had, and it all made sense to me for some reason--that when we do the things that mimic God, it is as if our soul is awakened and peace can set in. I don't know if that's true or not, but I hope that it is.

Later in the class she came over to look at my work and she asked me if I was having fun or if I was frustrated. I said a little bit of both. It's always frustrating to me (and I'm sure it is to anyone) when they are trying to do something and for some reason what's in their mind's eye isn't coming out onto the canvas (or you can't find the right words or the right music notes, or whatever it is you are trying to do). And she said to me that she could tell that I have high expectations of myself, and that this was a good thing because my learning curve was going to be high. And I had never looked at that part of myself as a positive thing for some reason, I've rather despised that part of myself because it can be maddening. I've always struggled with perfectionism, and it probably contributes to 99 percent of my insecurities. I think sometimes high expectations can become negative if you let it consume you--sometimes you never really commit to anything because you don't want to be a failure and subsequently never let yourself become successful at very much. But to look at it as a positive--that if I keep aiming high I'll achieve a lot, was a beautiful concept and something I hope I will embrace instead of letting life weigh me down. Well, Law and Order: SVU is on.

Shoot! I've already seen it!!! Argh!

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