en plein air…
I begin to unfurl.
My duty-brain has been knotted with nervy caregiver logistics.
Sleep? Huh. A thing of the past.
Dementia tangles and plaques its way into my daily surrounds, both in my personal and professional life.
Are you a caregiver for an elderly relative? How does this sit in your soulscape?
‘Emotional labour’ is a term coined by Arlie Hochschild in her book ‘The Managed Heart’. I love those words. Emotional labour. Managed Heart. They speak to me.
Emotional labor is the process of managing feelings and expressions to fulfill the emotional requirements of a job. More specifically, workers are expected to regulate their emotions during interactions with customers, co-workers and superiors.
I feel my way into expanded meanings of emotional labour. Could it be all the invisible inner work of trying to make it OK for someone else?
There’s the smiling, soothing, smoothing over, placating, reassuring, drawing forth strength, glossing over, smiling, facilitating sticky interactions, anticipating, planning, being one step ahead at any moment, smiling, refining, suppressing your own natural needs, mopping up messes and much much more. And smiling. Do you relate to this at all?
I find respite in a sweet place by the sea.
I hear the sounds of two beaches.
Lap lap. Swoosh swoosh.
An outdoor studio amongst the trees.
Birdsong. Treats for the senses.
Will it be a flower?
a heart at the centre?
I decide to add collage to make a teeny paintage picture. I become completely absorbed in a deep-focus-conscious-dreaming-art state. I am
in the Zone.
Intuitively, I find the colours and textures, tear them to fit, assemble the random, driven, divinely playful jigsaw.
And threads appear, growing out of the petals. They are reaching out.
Dendrites? Nerve cells? Brain cells? Heart cells?
The sea swooshes.
The birds sing.
My fingers are covered with glue.
I incorporate teeny tiny scraps of colour and texture from an art magazine. I design technology for outdoor collage. Put your magazine fragments in a plastic bucket so they don’t get whooshed away by the breeze.
Next day, I begin a new picture.
I want a field, an ocean,
a community of these sensitive creatures. Dendritia Saliosa
is surrounded by support and understanding. Fellow beings.
My plein-air studio.
The creative care community grows.
I look up.
Who says an artist’s soul doesn’t have open pores? Who says your immediate environment doesn’t influence you?
I see the leaves –
the shapes, the forms of my picture
are right there in my studio.
Nature births art births life…
And what happens next?
Here’s a clue.
Stay tuned. Friday 15th March.
with love, art and soul from Sally