When I work with a client’s deep inner images, I draw on the same visual language that artists work with, and so I find visual art, especially drawing, fascinating. I tell my students and workshop participants that we need to shift “how we are looking” to understand these potent inner images and allow them to take us into the vibrational energies of the intelligent field. It’s been hard for me to describe this way of looking, so I’ve looked to artists for help.
On that note, here are some excerpts from Leigh Hyams’ book, How painting holds me on the earth.
This sentence (describing what she does when she paints a landscape) is especially helpful :
Though a particular landscape is involved, I’m not ‘describing’ it. It’s a combination, perhaps, of experiencing, digesting, inhaling, even embodying it, and then speaking about it in paint.
Some other excerpts:
A painting is a portal, sometimes a seducer, which unlocks, opens, and leads the perceptive viewer into an un-nameable personal experience beyond words. A painting either has an “essence” or it does not. (page 15)
We have to trust the creative process wherever it leads us, knowing that with each drawing or painting we make with our whole hearts, our understanding of the richness and profundity of visual language–non-verbal language–will deepen. (page 32)
Don’t “read” a painting like a book, don’t “de-code” the images presented and tell the group what they remind you of. Explanations or stories in words may be interesting in themselves but they are irrelevant in a critique. We are only concerned with the actual painting itself, the visual language in which it is speaking–how the artist I handling the relationship of color, line, and space, its movement on the two-dimensional group, its rhythms, texture, line quality, and how they relate to the expressiveness of the images being painted. (page 89)
Realize that you are learning a new language. (page 90)
We humans have three ways of knowing: 1) rational, logical. 2) through the senses, and 3) a non-verbal aesthetic language that some lucky people have been able to learn through art-making. This deep way of knowing is neglected in our culture, but… this language is how we connect with Spirit and with the wisdom that lies beyond our thinking mind. Artists know this language. They know how to FEEL the truth of something.