You choose your mess

I’ve been sketching, thinking, gel-mediuming (yes, I just made that up,) watching, wishing, transferring, adhering, painting, soaking, repainting, cussing, sealing, waiting, crying, redoing, repainting and cursing for weeks upon weeks lately.

In those multiple weeks, I’ve stared at eleven cradled panels (and at 16″ x 12″ they’re much larger than my usual 4″ x 4″ size) and a violin (yes, a violin.) All have been cluttering my house along with materials strung about. Three panels have been delivered to a gallery. One needs delivered this coming weekend. Many need photographed. This violin has continued to keep haunting me, but it’s off my plate now.

And that aforementioned pile hanging over my head is at least five canvases less from a few months ago when I was thrown under the proverbial bus for a fundraiser…but I digress.

As I was looking over this “pile” of in-the-process of drying panels, I thought to myself, “Man, I’m a mess.”

These panels are a mess, my subject matter is a mess, these new Pebeo paints have been a (happy accidental) mess, and of course my house is a mess. The beauty of acknowledging my messes is that I also find beauty in said messes. My clothes are a brilliantly-stained mess, my palettes are an colorfully-experimental mess, and even the panels are an interesting mess.

I’m blessed that my family encourages my messes. I can recall my late-Mamaw saying to me during my art college days, “Lyn, after you’re life is over, no one who misses you will say, ‘I wish she would have washed more dishes. I wish she would have mopped more floors, or did more laundry. No, they’ll wish for more of your artwork.'”

So I’ll keep making messes. I’ll continue to be a walking mess. I embrace the mess.

And as much as I’m in over my head in messes, I still love this artistic soul-searching process. There’s no reason for me to fret the beauty of a mess.