Before we jump into this week’s interview, I have some exciting news to share with you… The ENTIRE 21 SECRETS workshop has been EXTENDED through January 1, 2012! That means you have 5 more months to play and explore! AND if you haven’t already registered, it’s not too late. REGISTRATION is now EXTENDED through October 1st! YAHOOOOO!!!! (click here for more information).
This week’s “Inspiring Artist” is one of the amazing instructors over at 21 SECRETS, Lisa Wilson.
I just love doing this interview series. I love getting to know other artists more deeply. Reading about what moves them and what inspires them uplifts me. I love the comments and e-mails I receive from readers who were touched by these artists. I feel like this series is an incredible gift and I am truly honored to be able to share it with you. Okay now that I’ve gotten that out there, let’s move onto this week’s INCREDIBLE interview with Lisa Wilson!
Hi Lisa, Please introduce yourself and your art a little bit.
I am an iced-chai-addicted, yoga-teaching (mostly to myself), Christian-raised, Buddhist-becoming, self-centered Midwestern mommy whose fascination with and exploration of life often means I forget to cook dinner and switch the laundry.
I am a self-defined “Awareness-Artist” who shares my stories and practical wisdom through words and art mainly on my blog and social networking sites (see below).
My art is always reflective of where I am in life and, as such, is constantly changing both in subject and medium. I believe in embodying creativity and letting it radiate – which often means doing yoga and/or running as part of my creative process.
I believe in the process over the product, humor over dried-out telling, and honest expression over copying another’s form (no matter how successful the latter may be). I also believe it is important not to get caught up in any stories – another’s NOR our own – and to mindfully experience life as it is happening.
I have degrees and awards and career experience but believe the above introduction gives you a much better picture of who I am than those titles and documents. (But I do have the long forms in case you want proof of said degrees and awards.)
For me art is…
…”expression of experience”. I think the attempts to define art as a universal term have failed because it is simultaneously a noun and a verb, simultaneously something collective and fiercely individual. Trying to find static words to describe such a fluid concept is like trying to hold a river in your hands.
This is a broad description on its surface – we express what we experience simply by sharing the story of how our day went. And yes – I think even that can be art.
But on a deeper level, true experience and honest expression is hard to come by these days. We make a 30-minute drive without remembering half of it, go to a meeting and don’t remember what was said, wake up one day with another year of our life gone. Mindful experience and expression that arises from a deep understanding of ourselves is a way of being that is far too rare.
To experience life in this way and then express it – though paint, journaling, the way we drive or do dishes, words, dance, sculpture, humor, music – is true, vibrant art. Whether it expresses the joyous, the painful, or the cycle within those, for me art is the expression of our divinely human experience.
What are you currently working on?
I had to look around me to be reminded…so I guess too much! Here are some of the things taking primary space in my mind and thus, actions right now.
- YOGA+ART: While the combinations of these two disciplines will branch into other ventures, I am currently teaching the YOGA+ART: Journaling into Awareness over at 21Secrets. While I knew from my experiences that these two tasted delicious together, the feedback I’m getting over at 21Secrets has convinced me that others can receive the same benefit from combining them. This won’t be the end of YOGA+ART!
- FLOW ART: I haven’t figured another way to describe this. I recently “discovered” watercolors and, simultaneously, a way of artistic expression that truly puts to a surface the message(s) I am feeling inside. I have been blogging about these experiments recently – everything from painting done with my breath to watercolor figures that share messages that go beyond words to allowing rain to dictate where the paint ripples. It is creative expression – art – truly flowing through me. I have no plans of stopping this anytime soon.
- Core Strength Vinyasa Certification: While this may not seem “art” related, remember the above….all disciplines can combine and strengthen one another! I completed yoga teacher training a few years ago and am now going through Sadie Nardini’s certification class to be able to teach the Core Strength Vinyasa style. Focusing on our core (physical and spiritual), I am growing in becoming “self-centered”. I am strengthening my own core and radiating from there.
I am also in the midst of several projects that tie into the concepts of form/space, masculine/feminine. It is a rainbow of perspectives on life that has colored every facet of my existence recently. I will definitely be sharing more about this on my blog soon!
Can you tell us a little bit about your Art Journals?
My art journals are truly my playgrounds. They are where I scribble inspiring ideas; play with new art materials and how they react to various surfaces and materials; attempt new figure drawings that don’t yet feel ready for bigger canvas.
My art journals used to be about copying ideas, trying to get a page to look like someone else’s. They have since taken on a fascinating new role as my friend, confidant, and artist playmate.
Recently I have been moving from meditation to my art journal, drawing and writing of concepts that arose during the deep state of meditation. Often, these bits in my art journals lead to full-size paintings.
Who has inspired you?
I had such trouble with this because – honestly – everyone has and does. When I see someone’s true being – how they have the strength to exist in this world despite their suffering, how they create the life they have, the thoughts they share, the emotions that swim through them – I am inspired to further learn of their life experiences and my own.
I’ve started and re-started many lists, but to exclude anyone feels like diminishing their importance in my life. So I’ll leave it at this.
What is your favorite inspirational quote?
A Rumi poem that anyone who knows me has certainly heard before, it is a poem that inspires me to continue moving beyond my own stories. To not get caught up being right or wrong, the words that express all of it, to move into the space of being…and to lie there with others in the blissful experience of it.
Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing there is a field.
I’ll meet you there.
When the soul lies down in that grass,
The world is too full to talk about.
Ideas, language, even the phrase each other
Doesn’t make any sense.
Are there any tips to living a creative life that you’d like to share?
Make sure to goobledeegock and find your plickyplack and definitely pursue smichneschmodt!
You already know how to live creatively. Life is one choice of creating a thought, a step, an action after another. It doesn’t matter what tips I share because they are only things that have helped me to re-member my own being. In fact, I almost don’t want to suggest anything because I don’t want anyone feeling that it is the only path and/or by doing it, they will rediscover their creativity and life will be awesome….and forgo their creative path when it doesn’t work.
Creativity is not found at the end of a paint brush. It is not written out in any books you will read.
Breathe in. Breathe out. Form your life out of your roles and allow space for discovery, magic, and re-membering to constantly flow.
Go about your life, actively making choices that speak to your soul, constantly practicing not wanting anything other than what is.
Blah blah blah, fruggerfliss.
Just go. Create. Live.
Where can people find you and your work?
When ignoring my laundry piles and weeds in the garden, I can be found here:
Thanks to Jeniffer for this wonderful opportunity and to you for taking the time to read it!!
“Inspiring Artists” is an ongoing artist interview series at JoyfulArtsStudio.com. Join me Mondays for a weekly dose of creative inspiration.
The series will continue as long as there are artists wishing to participate. If you are an artist and would like to share your story, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org, I’d love to hear from you. Thank you!
Love & Blessings,