With these exercises I spent a little time trying to connect to the feeling. As the exercise requests to “create non-objective images, no words and no figures” it makes you take a step away. When I think of the word joy, I immediately find an image in my head like smiles or colorful sunset. So in trying to create non-objective marks and lines I had to find a connection to what I was feeling instead what I was seeing in my head.
Inhabiting the emotions was easier than letting go of them, specially Loss and Anger. Mostly because of the personal experience I have been going through recently. They (anger and loss) were my most deepest emotions and I really had to take some time off between them and Joy and Calm. The fun part of the exercise was playing up with my materials.
Joy – The marks on this sequence I felt them very expressive, full of energy. I felt through the marks and lines that never-ending feeling of happiness and joy I experience from time to time. It’s like a lightning of joy, it doesn’t last that long but it strikes you right through the center. It’s like a continuous movement through the body, up and down, through the center and out. I felt that bright colors would help me express the feeling and lines with movement. Music helped and the fact I had really good days and I was feeling “it”.
Calm – I don’t think I’m at a calm state most of the time. I did some meditating and got a playlist with music that really calms me down, or at least feels like its calming me down. The marks are soft and really with no direction. Looking at them now, they are not beautiful but I can immediately relate to the feeling at the time, taking things easy and just letting the calm I was feeling flow through.
Anger – A lot of things make me angry, as well as my inability to express what I think or what I’m feeling to others. And I just let go on this one. Hard, pressure, angry movements… I thought I was going to destroy the paper, I did messed up some of my markers. On this one I realized I wasn’t following the exercise directions of only using one material and moving on to the next. I mixed up the materials and just took as I felt. I hope it’s not a big of an issue that I did so. And I believe I did in others too.
Anger is a very strong emotion, and it can really consume my thoughts sometimes. Through the years I’ve worked to deal with it as so it doesn’t stress me out but I try not to suppress it. I’m glad I have this new way of expressing my anger without stressing myself. I really left all that anger on that paper. (By the way I’m not an angry person, but on this particular moment deep inside I came to find out my anger is connected to my loss.)
The marks are vivid colors, I just felt anger was mixing up with something dark. They are centered/all over the sheet.
Loss (sadness) – For the last feeling I chose Loss (or sadness pertaining to the loss of someone dear). I have been dealing with this feeling for several months now. My mother passed away not long ago, and it has been consuming me. If you have experience loss, I’m sure you know what I mean. It comes and goes, sometimes I don’t want to create because the feeling and the sadness it’s too overwhelming. It makes me feel empty inside. And I think you can tell by the marks I made that “there is something missing.” People tell me it takes a lot of time to go through this process and it really touched me deeply as I worked on this exercise. It was very emotional. I couldn’t do much marking or lines. For the four halves, at some point I felt I had “loss” the mark, the line, the willingness and I think that is exactly what I feel. So in that sense, the exercise worked.
The marks/lines are the darkest ones compared to the rest, at the same time they are transparent and bold.
**The paper I used for this exercise was Blick Studio Newsprint 18×24; drawing materials were charcoal, indian ink, pens, markers, soft and oil pastels, liquid paper.