Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The worst nightmare

Wasps feeding from the bowls of
sugar water on my back porch in September

Did you ever have a day that was your worst nightmare,
and you kept telling yourself that it was your worst
nightmare all day? Except it wasn't true. It was just a
tiny blip, maybe a hiccup. For me the worst nightmare
now is not getting to paint at all. Not even for a minute.
That feels like torture. But it isn't really. And I paint
with my eyes all the time, and tomorrow at some point
I will paint again, and whew. That will be nice.

The marking saga continues deep into the night. I'm
21 minutes late to get to bed if I want to be rested in
the morning. And I do. Because tomorrow is my longest day.

But in the middle of high stress -- a lovely thing happened.
There I sat mired in papers all over my art table, when a knock
came at the door, and it was someone coming to buy a
painting. Right out of the blue. In the middle of the night!
So much for nightmares, and all that.

The picture today is of wasps, insects I was afraid of until
this year, when I learned how to manage, and even love them
a little bit. I had a one of nature's creatures feeling for the
first time ever.

So real nightmares are much different than overwork -- we
all know what they are. With good health, and some thought
overwork will be managed, and all will be, all is well.

Have a dreaming-peacefully-without-nightmares day.


Melinda said...

This post is one of my favorites. You are waxing eloquent, Barbara, and I love all that you have written and I love your lovely wasp photo, too.

Wow, just wow that a client shows up to buy your painting. That is so magically wonderful...I can't imagine what you felt, but I bet it was ten distinct and grand feelings all wrapped up into that moment.

I understand exactly what you mean about not painting. It's harsh, but survivable...but only barely sometimes.

So, too, the fear of creatures such as wasps. My greatest creature fear was spiders. Having a large tarantula as a pet became my catharsis of such phobia and I adore them now.

I am in awe of you and your work, I hope you know.

Best wishes as you walk through your longest day tomorrow. You'll know as you walk that you are heading toward paint, toward joy, toward your own fulfillment.

And then you'll rest well without a sting.

Aaaah--off now to dream of pleasant things: brushes, magenta, white canvas calling our names. O joy of dreams unimpeded by real time duties, dreams of painting for as long as we want because there is no fatigue there!!!

Virtual hugs and a tip of my beret to you, too!!

Holly Zemak said...

Hi Barbara - I have been enjoying your blog for a while now. I admire both your energy and use of color. I try to paint every day, even if it is only for a half hour. There is satisfaction in every little stroke. And you are doing much better with the wasps than I would.

eldon warren said...

How would I have guessed you would have come to terms with the wasps? I'm afraid I see them a bit differently since the one got into my shirt last summer. Oh well, huh? :)

Barbara Muir said...

Hi Melinda,

Thanks so much. Balancing painting and school is a whole other job. I'm trying to figure it out. I teach time management, which is funny in a way, but I'm sure it's so I can realize how each moment of the day is precious, and I can make the clock work for me from time to time.

So I was more than delighted when my client showed up in the middle of an evening of high worry. It stopped my negative spin in its tracks, and let me get back to knowing everything will be all right. Now I just have one set of papers to mark, and that means I can get them out of the way and paint all weekend! Yay. And as for fear of creatures. I felt very brave about the wasps. But don't get me started on snakes. I had to rip 10 pages out of my Martha Stewart Hallow'een issue because she had cakes decorated with snakes. I am terrified of snakes, and when I went for therapy about it the therapist said "Right On!" so that's not going to change.

So delighted to hear from you again.


Barbara Muir said...

Hi Holly,

Thanks so much. Your work is beautiful. I completely respect people's fears. My mother is a scientist, and this summer I felt a little bit of her experimental and calm theory coming through to me. So
I figured out a way to keep the wasps away from us when we were eating outside.

Take care,


Barbara Muir said...

Hi Eldon,

I've been stung myself before, but we eat on our back porch and in August and September they make that impossible. So I had to get practical and it worked. My son and husband were still scared, but I convinced them that as long as there was sugar water, the wasps had no interest in us, or our food and it was true. I stepped on one this summer, and no the sting isn't funny. But that was my fault, not the wasp's.

Take care,


Portrait Artist

My photo
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I paint and draw on commission and for shows. To commission a portrait, or purchase one of my paintings please contact me at: barbara.muir@sympatico.ca
A major highlight in my career? Drawing Oprah Winfrey live via Skype for her show "Where in the Skype are you? Galleries: Studio Vogue Gallery, Toronto, Canada. The Amsterdam Whitney Gallery, New York City. Gallery at the Porch Door, Kingston, Canada. Your positive comments on this blog mean the world to me. I'd love to hear from you!