Writing about serious topics can “weigh” on a writer after awhile. Yes, even when you are passionate about your subject. Sometimes, you need nonsense. You need to break the spell of the seriousness of life. Perhaps you need to go whimsical.
Why whimsy? I started painting in 2014 because words weren’t working for me. The down-trodden, restrictive cycle of my thinking was binding me to false beliefs. I was stuck within a “circle of wagons” (an archaic phrase insinuating protection, but feeling like entrapment to me). I wasn’t happy.
Registering for the online painting class, Brave Intuitive Painting, taught by Flora Bowley, I purchased a few canvases, paints and brushes and played. However, there was a seriousness even to this play. I wanted to do it “right”. Flora’s initiation into painting was a doorway into experimenting with color craving, abstraction, layering, personal symbols, intuition, freedom and more. While I wanted my outcome to be “like hers”, my own process and style overtook. What I needed, apparently, were images…though not realism, whimsical images. In fact, to my dismay, that was all that I could paint. Each painting began with no particular intention (other than following my intuition & Flora’s loose recommendations) and before too long, turned into an exercise in whimsy!
I was slightly embarrassed to post my art on the class Facebook page. I wanted to produce beautiful, masterful art. Animals that looked like real animals. Or a bird that looked like a bird, at least. Instead, something inside of me had to paint animals that looked like they were off the pages of a children’s book and perhaps rendered by a child.
Finally, I accepted this fact of my artistic life and began to appreciate what I was creating. Whimsical art. In retrospect, this was exactly what I needed at a time when my life was feeling too serious and restrictive.
So do you have some whimsy in your otherwise serious life? How does this side of you get to express? Through silly poetry, made-up words, scribbling, doodling, dabbling in something that you have little experience with for the sole purpose of play? Consider how you might bring whimsy as relief into your life.