‘Lotus Symmetry’ – Day 365/365

‘Lotus Symmetry’ – Day 365/365

A story for the Last Day of the 365 challenge before the reveal later 😋

Today’s painting, my not quite as mini, miniNature, is dedicated to my love.
.
To those who have followed this journey, it may look like I did 365 paintings alone, but the truth is, we did it together. .
Vic, my babe, I could never in a million lifetimes have achieved something like this without you. Not without your willingness to make 332 miniature frames (I started with only enough for a few weeks) because I refused to buy plastic wrapped canvases off Amazon made in China and flown half way around the world!
.
Not without your endless kind words of encouragement or your willing support of breaking and making my own rules along the way (today included).
.
I couldn’t have done it without your daily ‘that’s awesome, my love’ assurance of every damn painting (even the ones that were lacking in the heart).

And not without your quiet company in the studio on days that I struggled. I couldn’t have done it without your financial support in months where work was slow. Or without your backrubs and heart hugs in weeks where it all felt like too big and too dumb a challenge to take on. .
The whole challenge may have crystallized my understanding of the ‘no mud, no lotus’ analogy for the symmetry of artistic existence, but you never needed the challenge to love all my mud moments as much as my lotus moments. You’ve pushed me to grow more than you know.
.
You’re my diamond from the dust and I’m vrek grateful we’re in this together. 🙏🏼
.
✨Undertakings like this cannot be done without those who love us, the parents who root for us (thanks mom and Steve!!!) and the friends who believe in us with SO much love and kindness.✨
.
I took me the better part of 12 months to fully learn this: 💙the people in your life, WANT to be there for you.💙
.
Not everyone is that fortune, so if you are – let your friends and family support you in chasing your dreams. You’re depriving yourself of the chance to feel major love, abundance and joy for everything you already have before you achieve any goals.
.

If you haven’t seen my cheeky teaser video, watch it first! 👆🏼
.
I want to say a massive thank you to all the nature photographers who kindly let me use their images this year as sources to my inspiration. You did a majorly generous thing and I will always be grateful to you all. And NOW – You glorious gems!!! To every single human who stuck around while I did this thing, who commented, who engaged, who liked and who shared my work, fuck man, I want you to know how much I appreciate you. You all occupied invisible space in my tiny studio, encouraging me onward with your genuine messages of kindness and appreciation.
.
If I could hug every single one of you, I would. 🤗It was never about reaching numbers for me. It was about gathering connections along the way.
If you’re reading this now, on 31 Dec 2019 – you are part of the number that helped me see this year through. That pretty much makes you the biggest number my heart could ask for or handle.😍
.
If you resonated with what came out of my paintings or writings this year, please head on over to www.mininature.co.za and sign up to my newsletter.
I am bursting with content ideas (and more) for 2020, and I can’t wait to get cracking on creating it all, in hopes of inspiring more creatives to chase their magical dreams.
.
THANK YOU again. 🙏🏼💙✨🌈
.
To hear the story behind this painting and who I dedicated it to, read the previous post. 🙏🏼💙 Have a wonderful new year and be kind to yourself. This is the only moment you’ll ever get 🌱🌞
.
From my wild heart to yours,
Thank you!

‘Colour Works’ – Day 364/365

‘Colour Works’ – Day 364/365

Nearing the end I thought to paint some fireworks as a little pre-emptive colour hooplah for being almost done with this challenge.⁠
.⁠
I started painting the great puffs of colour in the sky and just could not get into it.⁠
.⁠
“Why is this not working for you, Andrea?” I asked myself. And as quick as lightning another part of me replied – ‘Because fireworks are too removed from nature’. (Yes, the chemical elements used are natural but the way they’re propelled into the sky with gunpowder is human-engineered).⁠
.⁠
Hmm. So I painted over it all and started again, tapping into nature’s own colour spectacle. Okay, this sky is a little Willy Wonka but none the less, it flowed, and therein lies the rub for me.⁠
.⁠
It’s SO easy to slip back into conventional associations or societally reinforced thinking structures. On the creative path, if you’re not questioning your why for stimulus often enough, you can quickly murky the source fire of your creativity. Of course, it’s fine to do so, but do it because you’ve decided to break your pattern, not because you’ve slipped unawares into the habitualness of life around you.⁠
.⁠

‘Written In The Stars’ – Day 363/365

‘Written In The Stars’ – Day 363/365

Maybe when the great creator designed the universe the aurora borealis occurred when the pen leaked all over the dark parchment of the sky…⁠
.⁠
Sometimes a story like that helps me paint the things I see and feel with more fluidity.⁠

‘LaYears Of Living’ – Day 362/365

‘LaYears Of Living’ – Day 362/365

Sceneries like this are painted in layers to add depth. While I was adding my final circles around the sun before moving onto the midground trees, I realised the layers of a painting are not unlike the layers of life.⁠
.⁠
Each builds onto the next and you can’t go back and redo one no matter how badly you want to. ⁠
Often the fact that you might have needed to go back and make a previous layer brighter, or softer or more vivid only becomes clear once you’ve added the next layer on top.⁠

In both cases, I guess the experience to know how richly to saturate these things while you’re in the midst of painting or living them, comes with time.⁠

But regardless of how you’re choosing to live the layers of your present life, kids or no kids, footloose or fancy, settled or nomadic, take an adage from painting and give your life the grace to fluff it up and make some blunders.⁠
.⁠
My personal call is – if it feels right for you in the present – you shouldn’t view it as a wrong call down the line. ⁠
.⁠
I’m relieving future me of any and all rights to judge and berate past me. If the background is too saturated and the trees look wonky when I’m 80 years old and sitting on that rocking chair sipping over salted Bloody Marys then ‘oh well’ that’s the painting of my life and I reckon I would be honoured to have a painting, any life painting to gaze back on.⁠
.⁠
.⁠
.⁠
.⁠
.⁠
📸 an absolutely breathtaking inspiration photo by one of my favourite photographers @joehanlyy ⁠

‘Perennial Pilgrimage, 3 of 3’ Day 361/365

‘Perennial Pilgrimage, 3 of 3’ Day 361/365

“Pilgrims are persons in motion passing through territories not their own, seeking something we might call completion, or perhaps the word clarity will do as well, a goal to which only the spirit’s compass points the way. ” – H. Richard Niebuhr⁠
.⁠

Want inspiration on building your creative life from scratch?

Sign up to my monthly newsletter and get 4 FREE miniNature painting wallpapers, one for each season, to keep you connected to nature.

Magic. Thank you.