This week has been graced by gorgeous weather. Today, the warm air called me outside where I took root under this blooming pear tree. I sat still there for an hour and half – journal in hand – occasionally jotting down an insight or an idea. But mostly I just sat, and let the earth hold me while my mind emptied.
I looked around and saw how often my perception of my garden is colored by all the work I see that needs to be done. I am almost always outside with clippers and digging tools in hand – keeping busy, not missing a moment to improve on this place. Today was a like a mini vacation – I relished the beauty of the natural world around me as it is right now, with no need to change it.
So often as an artist I forget the importance of sitting still. My time in the studio feels limited and precious. I tell myself I must be productive and busy to justify claiming this time for myself, time away from my family and other responsibilities. Yet today I was reminded how stillness is in itself an action. With it, comes a deep sense of renewal and connectedness that makes me a better artist and a better person.
Coming back into the studio, I took heart from Mary Oliver’s wise words tacked to my bulletin board…
“Let me keep my mind on what matters,
which is my work,
which is mostly standing still and learning to be