“Forlorn” – Chalk Pastels on Paper – Deanna Strachan
As you may or may not know, I work full time as a Manager for a non-profit mental health agency. My role is to work with my team to help people with mental illness return to work. Today we are having an event to celebrate employment and honor those who have started their journey toward returning to work as well as those who are currently working. While being a natural and expected role in our society, working also brings about a great number of benefits including health and wellness, structure and routine, social connection and of course economic self-sufficiency (ideally). Even if we don’t like our job, it is healthy for us to continue to go to work…maybe find a job we like better…but keep working. Sometimes our work is fulfilling. I find fulfillment in my work, not on a daily basis, but in the moments when people who are returning to work, are afraid to return to work, not sure they “can do it” and then step up to the plate and DO IT. There is relief and a new excitement, confidence is rebuilding and human resiliency begins to shine. This is what working means to me.
I am experiencing the same thing by participating in this amazing on-line art community, by teaching classes, by experimenting myself with new tools and techniques. Like work, this online connection is offering me routine, structure, new friendships, opportunity for learning and growth. Like those I work with who are returning to work, I read over and over again about people’s experiences with entering a new art class for the first time, or returning to art after years away. We are afraid, unsure, insecure, filled with self-doubt. Can I do this? Will I be fulfilled by this? Then, we step up to the plate and DO IT. Voila! Like that! There is relief and a new excitement! Confidence is rebuilding! We are shining! This is what art means to me.
If any of this resonates with you and you are feeling fearful of trying a new class, learning a new technique, or simply returning to art after years away, I encourage you to DO IT. If you look around, there are many, many classes in which to choose from, both locally and online. You may know that I am a guest teacher for Kara Bullock’s Let’s Face It 2016 Course. This course is all about facing our fears about painting faces. I encourage you to take a look HERE and see if this might meet your needs for learning, growth and re-sparking that confidence and excitement. If you know this is the class for you, I encourage you to enroll now to get the early bird price of $99 before December 1st.
Let’s be on this journey together. Come shine with us!