This tile is the product of another journal prompt from a journal project I'm participating in; the topic is "complementarity"--specifically, complementary colors on the color wheel.
(Complementary colors are any two colors that are opposite each other on the color wheel, like red and green, or yellow and violet, or blue and orange)
But the prompt goes beyond that and asks us to think about the effect of practicing our less-preferred or less-explored tasks or skills in life.
I'm drawn most to the cool colors on the color wheel. But for months now I've been experimenting with incorporating more of the hot ones into my color work. Putting this piece on a red background is unheard of for me, and it has oranges and yellows worked into the coloring. I like the effect. I notice that the more I use these colors, the more comfortable with them I become, and the more I like using them.
Looking beyond art to life, I can see it's the same with my preferences in tasks and skills. Perhaps I will eventually learn to cook, a definite less-preferred skill. A friend has offered to teach me to make soup, which must be the easiest thing to make on the face of the earth. But somehow I never learned to make soup, or to cook in general. I'm going to take her up on her offer of making soup. Where might that lead me, I wonder?
Meditation is another learned life skill and definitely "less explored" or "less preferred" in Western culture. And then, this past year, mindfulness meditation went viral in the media and has become something of a fad. This is always dangerous, as it can encourage a backlash based on misunderstandings and wrong assumptions. Every time I sit in meditation, I learn something new, whether it's a "bad" or a "good" session; they are all instructive. So even when I am having a "don't wanna do it" meditation day, I usually do, and I'm always glad I did.
Finally, I like the quote above from Coco Chanel. Sometimes all I need to do is get out of my own way and do nothing...I used to avoid "hot" colors in my work, but as I "do nothing to prevent [the presence of hot colors] from growing," I'm finding that I am, indeed, being entirely charmed by them. Similarly, my tolerance of varied mind states in meditation has grown and developed. Hey, I might even learn to make soup, and soup certainly reflects a blend of complementary things with a delicious outcome.
A quote from Marc Chagall on the topic: "All colors are the friends of their neighbors and the lovers of their opposites."
So back to the idea of the color wheel: It seems it could teach us a lot about life.
I'm a textile artist (traditional rug hooking, punch needle rug hooking, and other textile arts), long-time meditator and coach, focused on learning about the interplay of art, creativity, and mindfulness every day.
NEXT INTRO TO ZENTANGLE CLASS:
No immediate group classes scheduled (I'm always open to hearing about a good venue in the Cambridge-Somerville area). I am always happy to teach 1-1 and/or in a small group in your home.
Come and amaze yourself!
SITES TO WATCH:
Insight Meditation Society
Oxford Rug Hooking School
Zentangle: The Official Site
Green Mountain Rug Hooking
Massachusetts Tarot Society
Skillful Meditation Project