Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Sponge People (or Lots of Art and Self Love.)

I usually do not like going places alone. When I want to go out to eat, go shopping, or even get books at the library, I always invite someone so I don't have to go alone.

But today, I had a "Me Morning". I meditated, created an art journal page, took the bus to the library, walked from there to get lunch at this amazing deli cafe called The Earth. I kept my phone in my purse and didn't check it or use it to pass the time waiting for food or the bus. I read and I wrote and I listened to music. I just let myself hang out with myself. I let myself simply be with myself.

Lunch with myself. Me on the bus. 

I have what I like to call "The Sponge Syndrome". It's where I absorb everything around me, and thus, that is all that comes out of me. Actually, I have a feeling the majority of our society has just this same problem, perhaps without even realizing it.

I have fallen in love with Twitter. I follow the most inspirational people. They are constantly providing articles and blog posts about creativity, living your own voice, and just living a loud life full of hope and healing and art. And I eat it up! I savor it, revel in it! Because they really are great words of inspiration. But I can get to a point where I fill myself so full of everyone else's voices that when I open up my mouth to say something, nothing of my own self comes out. I have filled myself so full of everyone else that there is no room left for me!

So what do we do when we realize we are a sponge full of other peoples spring water?

I think who we are when no one is around is very important. I don't just mean around us physically, I mean around us on the internet too. Who are we when we aren't arguing about politics on Facebook, or retweeting art blog posts on Twitter, or singing in the car with our friends, or working hard on a passion project with others that share our vision? Because whether we mean to our not, in real life and especially on social media, we create a facade, a persona, the best version of our self that we don't mind everyone else seeing. 

But what voice speaks to us when we are alone, unplugged, and we empty out all the outside voices rattling around inside us? We have to strain our ears to hear our voice, search through the din to settle on the voice that we know deeply as our own. Each person's voice sounds different to them.

I equate my inner voice to wind-chimes, flowing water, and the occasional rainfall; sounds that bring me peace, clarity, and calm.

It is important to set time aside, to empty ourselves of the outside, to ring ourselves out, letting every drop of outside voices fall out of us. It is important to recognize the voice that is left; to befriend it, listen to it, get to know it; it's tone, it's resonance, it's crackle, it's vibrations.

Hear yourself, it brings healing and growth. Your voice matters.

These two art pieces were both done at times when I was letting my voice rise, when I was vulnerable, when I was truthful. To me, the voice radiates through the art, singing out a song of myself, a symphony wrought in paint strokes, scribbles, and my inner landscape.

A little process view of an art journal page. I call it "Moon Owl". It was during a meditation that an owl came to me, as if guiding me, and I felt strong and brave and safe. This is a simple page with no paper layers. It's just paint. I didn't really plan the layout or the final look, I just let things out and sculpted them on the page. Way more intuitive than usual.  

This one is called "Overflowed". 

The blue and gray background was done in a wave of music and tears and emotion. It was a very cathartic experience.

The lady is a sort of self portrait. At first, it was just her head, and I was a bit unhappy with the final product. I then got the inspiration to use fabric to give her a body and shape. And that made it feel complete and extremely satisfying.  

Whew. I apologize that this post is quite lengthy. And I apologize that my art is so big in this post. It just felt right. (And also, blogger was being weird and not sizing things to my liking, but we will go with it feeling right.) 

I hope that you are all finding your voices and speaking with them in a way that allows truth, healing, and growth within you. Please comment and tell me, what does your inner voice sound like to you?!


  1. Ahhhhh, Robyn! This is such a great post!!

    1. I LOVE those collages. I looked at them for a long time.

    2. Owls have been coming to me lately too. I read that they signify deep spiritual connection. Pay attention to your dreams right now.

    3. I get you on the alone thing, sista. It's something most of us women need to learn to come to terms with. This: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k7X7sZzSXYs

  2. It has made me want to learn more about owls! Have you seen Julliette Cranes's owls?! They are amazing! http://juliettecrane.com/index.shtml

    And that video was so uplifting! Thank you for sharing!