Let me begin by saying thank you for arriving at the workshop with such open minds and ready to play!
It was such a pleasure to have you in my space. I work with these ideas everyday in my work, but they come alive in a new way when people like you come and experience what they can mean for you.
Now that you’ve had a little time to digest, here is a summary of what we did, as well as some resources, if you’re inspired to keep exploring beyond the workshop experience.
IDEAS WE EXPLORED
PAUSE, NOTICE, BREATHE and then from that quiet state, play with CREATING SOMETHING as an expression of that flow.
Make a breath drawing, a blind contour, make a meal, write some words, snap a photo etc…
Use the creating as a way to slow down, as a meditation.
It is the feeling you get when you’re in the process of the creating that you’re aiming to hang out in.
HEIGHTENING THE SENSES:
Through deliberately slowing down and bringing attention to taste, smell, touch, sight or hearing, (especially with something pleasurable or beautiful), we drop into a more perceptive, open state - This allows us to more easily connect to our physical body and a sense & gratitude and sets the stage for a creative mindfulness practice.
Remember the feeling of delight and calm in your chest as your brush first touched the wet paper, how the ink slowly bloomed across the surface?
How you can you bring in a sense of expansive FLUIDITY into your day?
Our minds will always wander and get busy, we need something to return to.
Examples of anchors can be:
focusing on your breath.
staring at a candle flame.
the point of contact of the tip
of pencil, pen or brush on paper.
BLIND CONTOUR: A practice of embracing imperfection as well as sharpening our noticing skills…
Find something interesting in your line of vision.
Maintain focus, without looking at paper.
SLOWLY trace its contours, notice and record as much detail as possible).
IT WILL LOOK strange and wonky — find the WABI SABI (beauty of the imperfection) in it -
See how it does capture the energy of the thing in an interesting way.
Perhaps fill in some of the interesting shapes afterwards with another colour.
This is a beautiful way to connect internally/externally and when slowed down, it can regulate your nervous system and bring it to a state of calm.
Use a pencil, pen or brush to express your inner state (like an an internal body scan expressed visually)
Use sounds or different kinds of music to guide you in mark-making.
Embracing imperfection (the Japanese aesthetic and concept) as an alternate way of seeing and appreciating the world - giving permission to yourself to be messy, to show up as is.
Strengthening the muscle of looking for the beauty in the worn surfaces, the broken things, in scars, the wonky drawings…
Here are some of my favourite ‘Elevated Moments’ collected by workshop participants.
Fresh Sheets (esp. if they’ve just been hung outside)
Quiet at night after kids have gone to bed
First sip of wine/coffee
Sweetness of bedtime cuddles
Morning drop-offs & pickups
Emotional contrast in a piece of music
Warmth of sun on your face
First sound of the cardinals early in the morning
The quiet after or during a heavy snowfall
Stepping out of an airport in a new city
The smell and feeling of coming home
What would life be like if you really honed the skill of noticing MORE of these kinds of moments in your life?
Notice how it feels to really savour a moment like this and how it can immediately change your state.
Remember that CONTRAST is one of the keys to elevating a moment.
Stop Look Breathe Create by Wendy Ann Greenhalgh
The Art of Mindfulness by Wendy Ann Greenhalgh
The Zen of Creativity by John Daido Loori
Any black fine tipped pen - I’m a fan of ‘Le Pen’ brand or even pilot fineliners
Pencils (Blackwing brand is fancy and fun but a regular pencil is fine too)
Dry erase markers/board
Small sketchbook or notebook in your bag
Larger sketchbook/paper (play with scale and how it feels in your body to work bigger or smaller)
Try writing a word and placing it around your physical space as a visual cue of mindfulness.
BEAUTY OF IMPERFECTION (or simply WABI SABI)
CREATIVE EXPRESSION SESSIONS
If you loved the workshop, I am now offering 1-1 Mindful Creative Expression sessions, where I can customize an experience specifically for you and guide you through a deeper dive.
STAY IN TOUCH
Don’t let this be the last time I get to see you…
Pause, drop in & create something.
And let me know how it goes!