“So often times it happens that we live our lives in chains and we never even know we have the key.”
-Eagles song, “Already Gone”
One of my favorite paintings is perhaps a surprise to some of my followers out there. Yes, I love the ones I have done of my children, of course, but up there along with them is this painting I did a few years ago.
The title of this painting is “Bound”. It means a lot to me personally and I have it hanging right near my kitchen table to remind myself every day to not get in my own way. That sometimes when the world seems overwhelming, and hurdles seem insurmountable and I feel the anxiety stacking up, that I need to step back and ask myself, “Am I doing this to myself?”
I love the idea that we are in charge of the things that can hold us back. That WE alone can get in our own way. I hear artists all the time saying, “I could never do that!” or, “I am just not good enough!” Such strings. I know sometimes I have a death-grip on my own strings. And if we just release some of those restraints, loosen the grip on those things that are keeping us from moving forward, feeling peaceful or grateful, and just plain let go of toxic relationships, self-doubt and negative energies, that we can breathe easier, see clearer and accomplish what we really want to spend our life on. Because every day is burning up our lives. What do you want to do with the time you have left?
When I was working with this model, I knew I wanted the strings to be pulled taunt and be many-colored to represent the many things that can be pulling on us. In the session it was pretty funny. Strings everywhere and lots of laughter. they were not straight. In the actual painting I used a ruler- (sure, why not?) To make them more linear than they were in real life. Visual tightness.
Quarantine has been a blessing in a lot of ways. I realized that I can say no. That I can paint images that mean more to me and say more about me than I have ever delved into before. And that sometimes, sitting on the couch with my kids and ignoring the dishes is the best way to spend my life.
Self-doubt will come. Finances will always be a worry. Yet I am striving to use a large pair of scissors and cut those strings that might keep me down. I have the key.
I wish you a big pair of scissors too.
I enjoyed this one very much. We all have strings. Some are loose, but some are so tight they hurt physically. Have a great day.
Thank you, Christine, for illuminating the freeing idea that we each can employ ‘the scissor technique’ when we sense we ‘binding’ is creeping in to tether our creative, living spirits.
You have such beautiful imagery in words and on canvas.
thank you- peace to you as well.
This is definitely a favorite of mine as well. The model is beautiful and her inward gaze and expression is one of defiance as if to say, I am breaking these bonds that are holding me back. It is done so well and has so much to keep you interested and engaged! Bravo Christine!!
Beautifully said! Love your strings series and reading your inspiration behind it makes it even more striking.
This blog reading was a very good reminder to me as I prepare for a difficult conversation tomorrow morning. I’m grateful to have a supportive community that helps me step back and ask these good questions. “Am I making this harder than it needs to be?, Why do I need to feel pressured in these circumstances, when I have followed procedure and others clearly have not? I do not need to always be the one who bends in conflict.” I am glad I had the luxury to walk away and get the support I needed before reengagement. This weekend I had time to seek counsel leading up to this meeting. Due to having this time to step back and regroup, I can feel confident and strong in standing my ground at this conflict. Thank you for your part in this.
Glad to help in any small way. Good luck to you!! 😊