Abstract art expresses connection with your subconscious feelings and perceptions; abstract art is the visual result of exploring deep emotions. When you manifest the courage it takes to leave your comfort zone, face down fear and explore the unknown, you can use spontaneity as a conduit to creativity.
The aim of art is to represent not the outward appearance of things, but their inward significance. — Aristotle
Courage Trumps Fear
Anything you have become attached to or adverse to will create fear. Taking the baby steps required to detach or suspend attachments and aversions is a challenge. Overcoming them one at a time is a painful journey and paradoxically, when you have arrived you find you are in the middle of nowhere. This unexpected destination, this nowhere is the best place in your world you can ever be, but you will never experience that truth unless you are willing to take the first step to go beyond the prison walls in your mind.
We aren’t just eyes; we have memories, feelings. Emotional content is what makes life whole, and a lot of abstraction has no connection with people. — Mark Adams
You pick up your brush and without planning or thinking it through you begin depicting the your world and your experience of it on canvas. Bold as brass feelings depicted in primary colors and large well-defined shapes and spaces. Nuances of overlapping and leftover emotions sparked by larger than life events expressed in complementary colors weave in their part of the story. Divergent colors and shapes emerge, collide and consume and subsume. Slowly your brush begins to depict a broiling stew of subtle emotions or a placid lake of devotional quietude. As you go deeper, as you tell your story on canvas, you lose self-consciousness and experience creativity in the flow.
I paint my own reality. The only thing I know is that I paint because I need to, and I paint whatever passes through my head without any other consideration. — Frida Kahlo
As you feel more comfortable with the unknown the brush flows more quickly and surely revealing what you think, perceive, experience, feel, fear and value. Everything you produce has a fresh quality to it. Much will be begin strangely not only in terms of style but also in terms of colors, designs, shapes and sizes. There’s no guarantee you will like even a single piece, but it’s your truth revealed and there’s a sense of ownership that honors the creation. When your nattering monkey mind starts playing games you can easily laugh them off and paint on. These art therapy canvases won’t be on public display; you needn’t worry about being perceived as a social misfit. These paintings by you are for you – alone.
Abstract artists tell their stories with shapes, color, edges, movement, and value – just like when one is painting a beautiful scene. The difference is, of course, there is no scene. The scene is within the artist. I often get asked, ‘How do you know when you are done?’ I am done when the story is told. — Gwen Fox
Diving Down the Rabbit Hole
Time passes, canvases covered with your stories speak volumes from the dusty corners you tucked them into. You feel the increasing need to become further detached from what you learned — from what you thought art is. Fear decreases and eventually ceases. Every day you boldly dive down the mysterious rabbit hole and enter the realm of spontaneous abstract painting with an alleluia!
Quotation credit: The Painter’s Keys
Related posts found in this blog:
Beyond Fear: Creativity
Art Therapy: Abstract Painting
Art Therapy Abstracts: The Depths
Tim Ferris: Smash fear, Learn anything
Constructive approaches to conquering fear of rejection