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Welcome to Beauty & Spirit Note from the Studio: Julie Bernstein Engelmann's abstract art insights, news & muse.
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I May Be All That Exists
Julie Bernstein Engelmann, 22"H x 26"W,  acrylic and latex on partially primed canvas, 2013
 
What if I am living in a hologram of my own creation,
and what I see and perceive at this moment is all that is --
all evidence to the contrary being my elaborate creation. 
Do I change what I choose to think?

I had a feeling

Art is an experience of resonating


Dear <<First Name>>,

What exactly is a feeling? 

Isn't it funny that we all seem to know what feelings are, but can you really pinpoint one? Like a color, there is no particular reason to believe two people are having the same experience named by a certain term. 

Yet, for all that ownership of our private emotions, some of them can sure be scary. Why--if no one else is inside our head to insist that we feel a certain way--can't we just change it? 

You can't change a feeling directly, because you can't unfeel. But you can transmute it by feeling it openly, with more curiosity than judgment, giving it the time it needs in the light of day. 

Some people are so good at this. I only learned the skill a few months ago by trial of fire. Luckily I had just bought a big, fat notebook to start doing Morning Pages. 

 

Morning Pages

You have probably heard of Morning Pages, a technique by the trailblazer of creative process, Julia Cameron in her famous book, The Artist's Way, A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity.

Basically, you write 3 pages every morning. No matter what. No matter what about.

Amazing things happen inside of you. 

I found that out for myself, having had nothing better to write about than this humongous, uncontrollable shame that had come up in response to a sharp criticism I received. I wrote and wrote, and then collapsed into bed. (Okay, I didn't wait for morning to do my Pages.) 

I woke up at dawn and jumped out of bed, feeling like the sun was rising in my aura with birds singing in my head and a million bucks in my pocket. 

Since then, I've become quite practiced at diving right into my feelings. It's the first thing I do when they come up, which is so weird and wonderful compared to my previous procedure of shoving them into a burlap sack and praying they don't make a peep when the inspector comes around.


Art is a experience of resonating

Art, like Morning Pages, can be a transmuting process. Luckily. More on that in a future post. 

I tell my students that what you feel goes into your painting and can be felt by the viewer. So, be easy. Allow the paint to speak, rather than forcing it. 

I think that's why we love the work of a master. It feels so easy -- and masterful! We resonate to these exquisite feelings!  

Looking at an artwork is an experience of resonating. 

"How does an artwork make you feel as you take the trip through it with your eyes?" 

This simple question, from my free ebook, How to Bring Your Abstract Art to Life, speaks volumes about why people buy art.

If you're an abstract painter and you wonder why one of your paintings sold and another didn't, look no further for the answer. 

 

So, about my ebook

Have you read it yet? Perhaps it, like abstract art, is deceptively easy. There's a lot packed into its simple language. 

Let me know what you think. And, if you incorporate the ideas into your artmaking I'd love to hear your stories. R
eply by email or on the blog. 


Yours in the spirit of art,
Julie

Jump to blog
I'm currently in the thick of working on my video course, From Beautiful Mess to Strong Composition. Exciting! This is my class at the Community Arts Center of Cambria County, Johnstown, Pennsylvania, September 2013, where most of the course was videotaped. 
It takes a community to name a painting Read the story of Who Is This Infinite Being, by Julie Bernstein Engelmann, 20"H x 24"W, latex and acrylic on canvas, 2013. Blog post
From Julie to artists who love abstract painting

       Artists who pursue abstract painting seem to fluctuate somewhere between guessing what they are doing and catching a wave of brilliance. I'd like to shift the odds toward your natural brilliance. 
       I believe abstract paintings have visual depth and harmonics, and that when you learn to see these, you will discover new freedom, confidence, and achievement in your art, no matter your style.
       Get your free ebook, How to Bring Your Abstract Art to Life, A Manifesto of freedom and confidence for the creative soul, or sign up for an Art to Heart Session at: AbstractPaintingMentor.com
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Copyright © 2014 Julie Bernstein Engelmann, Artist, All rights reserved.


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