Taking five minutes with the #FiveMinuteFriday gang to write unedited on a theme sent out by Lisa-Jo Baker. This week its Paint. Find out more about the nearly 300 writers who pitch in together with wonderful words here.
It’s been a while since I touched my paintbrushes. I find the pen is much easier to control, words come more naturally for me. But nevertheless, I’ve had a go at painting in my time – a real good go. For almost a year I did art classes, it must have been about 2 years ago. Week by week, I gathered with others, and together we showed our vulnerable attempts to each other. Week by week we encouraged, not just in words, but in simply showing up.
We tried a number of different media. Acrylics, Gouache, Watercolours. Charcoal, pastels, ink. Thick paper, thin paper. Real people, pots and pears. I love what it did to me. It wasn’t so much about what I produced, as what happened as I produced it. Just like the way words interpret me even as I’m writing them, the lines on the page talk back to me. It’s amazing, this relationship with creator and created. They look back at each other, face to face… the painter sees what happened, and wonders, why did that happen? What shall I do now, to make it better?
I struggled the most with watercolours – they were the most unruly, and I always seemed to overdo it. More than any other paint I found I had to just let it go, let it do what it wanted to do, and stop trying to corral it into neat lines and spaces. Watercolour went wild. Charcoal was wonderful – a real sense of control to start with, but before I knew it, there were smudges and a sense of motion and swirls and shadows. Even in the black and the white… I loved how I could put shadow any colour I liked. One day I drew a yellow horse. It worked perfectly, though I’ve never actually seen a yellow horse. Like novelling, you have so much freedom to do things the way you want to, the way you see it. You control the characters… that is, until they start to talk back at you and make their own decisions!