Friday, January 25, 2013

Soul Refreshment

It's been so interesting to me to see how my relationship with art and creativity is developing as a mother with a new(ish) baby.  Before Baby Boy arrived, I would create in fits and starts, held back by fear and perfectionism, with long "breaks" (a.k.a. avoidance) in between creating finished pieces.

But now, I have pretty much no time.  Our sweet boy is a rather high needs baby who resists naps like no other, meaning that I cannot depend on having any time to exercise, shower, create, clean, or any other self-care activities during the day.

And while I love this boy to the point of pain, although he has every ounce of my mama heart that I have to give, the creative side of me is crying out for sustenance.

So I make do with what I have.  I snatch up the precious few moments of his naps and create and create and create.  I explore the iPad's art apps and make art digitally while breastfeeding.  Or I rig up our ring sling, set Baby Boy up on a boob, and create one-handed.

And guess what -- I am creating more now, coming away with more finished pieces and more brave exploratory creations, than I ever did when I had all day to myself.

It's crazy.

But it's needed.

Because I am discovering that making art is like breathing to me.  It nourishes me soul in such a refreshing, unique way.  It flows out of all my loves -- my loved ones, my faith, my love of words.  And (I think) when I can find time to create, I come away a better wife/mother/friend/person.

I need to make art.

And so I do, any way that I can manage.

Here are some of the many [awesomely challenging and different] ways I've been doing that this week . . .

Learning new techniques in Misty Mawn's portrait workshop . . .


charcoal portrait #2

Exploring iOS art apps (these were all made with ArtSet) . . .

 hello, love 




New sketches and remembrance art . . .


Audrina Mae 


New art in the shop . . .

You Shine Bright

A painting made in memory of friends' sweet pup . . .


Not to mention the new banner I made for this blog!  Whew!  Not bad for a couple of weeks.  (Well, except for that last painting -- I made that a month or two ago, but just got around to posting it.)  What can I say -- it refreshes my soul.

What refreshes your soul, my friends?

linking up with:


  1. beautiful work. I too need to create everyday. I just came out of a long empty period where I wasn't able to create due to depression and anxiety but now I am back to working every day or at least nearly everyday! It is so important for my spirit! Stopped by to see you from Studio JRU.

    1. Depression is terrible! I'm sorry you've been dealing with that...but I've been enjoying reading your journey out of it on your blog ( I'm a subscriber, thanks to Studio JRU!). :)

  2. You are so talented!! I remember when I was in college and had my daughter I didn't know how in the world I was going to keep up, pass, and finish, but you know what? I did better in school after she was born than I did before! I guess when you know you have to make the most of what time you have it makes you more focused and determined to get things done. Wish i could apply this now :)

    1. Oh no you mean the motivation doesn't last? Darn! I rather liked that side effect of having no time ;)

  3. my children are not so little anymore and i find if i am happy creating...then i am just happier and more able to encourage them in their sure had a productive week...popping over to your Etsy shop to see more. here from Studio JRU..

  4. Oh my goodness do I need art too!! It is such sweet therapy for me. Like you, it just makes me a better wife, mama, and friend. The other night I was so upset about something and I just painted (and prayed) it away. With a little one, finding time can be so tough (my almost 4 year old runs me ragged, lol) but you are super creative in finding ways to get painting! Love it and all your new pieces - plus your banner!! :)

  5. Oooo...I feel the same way; art is as necessary as breathing. I'm still working on getting back into the swing of creativity, though. My little guy is only three weeks old, so we still haven't really established much routine at all.

    1. Also, I love, LOVE the bright pieces you've made with your drawing app.

    2. Oh 3 weeks! So tiny and precious...congrats! :)

  6. your banner is super sweet; your art is flowing beautifully... in the time God has given... is giving... you! Amen!

  7. I love your work Beth. I am amazed at all the pieces you have done recently!

  8. It is nourishing, isn't it?! We all get it, Beth! I love seeing all these pieces. Such a variety... that is so neat! Happy to see you 'in the studio' this week, friend! xo


"I am glad you are here with me."
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King