Being Stuck is a Beautiful Thing

Right now, I’m in the middle of painting the second painting in a series of three paintings titled, Yellowstone Wolf. If you search for the story of wolves being reintroduced into Yellowstone, you will find the story of how the reintroduction of that apex predator improved the ecosystem. I wanted to highlight that story and bring it to the attention of people by creating a series of paintings. The second painting I’ve started is where I’m stuck. I usually begin my abstract paintings by making random black and gray marks on the canvas and then based on those marks I follow my intuition to add colors and shapes. I allow the painting to reveal itself rather than try and force a preconceived image. What has happened with this second painting in the series is a face emerged after adding color. I highlighted the naturally occurring face and now I’m stuck because this has never happened so early in the painting process. I don’t know what the next step is. It is a beautiful place to be. What is now possible is absolutely anything because I can’t see how to proceed. I’ve never been in this situation before in the creation of art. My usual way of creating a painting has been hijacked. Interrupted by something out of the ordinary. I am forced to set aside my process and look at this face while asking it to speak to me. The 2-dimensional image has stopped the clock of my 3-dimensional life. I am surprised by how uncomfortable I am with the problem of endless possibilities since that is what I focus on as a coach – increasing possibility in the lives of my clients. At some point I will have to add more marks and colors and shapes to find out where this face is taking me and uncover the possibilities now unseen. This face on the canvas is my coach and it does not have a voice, so I am listening to my inner voice to discover what is next. This is quite appropriate as my sole role as a coach is helping others to hear their own inner voice and the wisdom it reveals.