Color Me Well

I love color! I love exploring color, playing with color, and using color. I’m drawn to color in all my environments. Color has the power to invite us to play, punctuates parts of our story, and expresses our subconscious world. The wonderful thing about color is it can speak louder than words!

Last week I taught a color theory class to quilters. Learning about color theory gives our art more definition, creates work that is aesthetically pleasing, and gives hints about our likes and dislikes. Understanding color gives you the tools to express yourself more fully. When you understand color you understand the underpinnings of art. It’s the equivalent of a writer looking for just the right word when sharing their world.

Ever notice when you’re out in the world the colors establishments use? Restaurants use colors that stimulate your appetite. Spas use colors that calms and soothe. We all have colors that make us think, feel, and express. They can articulate our souls message.

When do you notice color? What is it about color that grips you? What do you do once color captures your vision, your mission, and your means of self-expression? I’m very sensitive to color and pattern. I see a tie, a dress, or a mural and I’m captivated by the power of color. It’s as if I have this file draw in my brain and color triggers a memory, a thought, or even a piece of art. What does art do for you?

Facing adversity such as a chronic or life-threatening illness can lead us with the need to release those thoughts holding us back on our health and healing journey. Color is one way that we can allow those thoughts to leave our body by transferring them to a canvas, a blank piece of paper, or by using fiber. Color can be the dangling carrot that keeps you moving in the direction of ultimate self-expression service as a catalyst for your immune system.

How will you use color today to heal your body, mind, and spirit? I’d love to see your color story!

Shepherding New Artists to Tell Their Story

Every life is a story. Our stories are ever evolving. Along with our ever-evolving lives, our creative endeavors evolve the more we learn and the more we do. As we engage in art you’ll probably run across those who are just beginning their creative quest. How can we as artists support people who are looking for a way to enter the realm of creative self-expression?

Dr. Maya Angelou said, “If you get…give, when you learn…teach”. Why should you, an artist, teach? You should teach because you know the joy of making art. You’ve personally experienced the freedom and release that accompanies making art. You’ve shown the world that your voice needs to be heard, and by teaching you can help us bring for their own stories.

I’m a textile artist and one of the challenges that quilters often have is with color. Unlike other mediums, those who use commercial fabrics, they buy their color instead of making their color. This leaves many novice textile enthusiasts fearful of choosing fabric inhibiting their creativity and limiting their enjoyment.

Last night I taught a color theory class at one of the local quilt shops. I love to teach because I thoroughly enjoy telling stories. I find it easier for people to hear your message when you tell amusing and personal stories. The other aspect of teaching is engaging the participants to join in with an activity. I know I learn best by doing, not just listening or watching.

The participants left with a new level of self-confidence with their ability to select colors. They were inspired enough to ask for a follow-up class to continue their own artistic journey. It feels like giving birth to the next generation of textile artists. As teachers we provide those entering the arena with hope and possibility that they can create works that are not only beautiful but also meaningful.

I hope you take the role of teacher, mentor, or catalyst seriously. We have an opportunity to shepherd those with the creative urge and talent to bring forth their worldview!

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