"Wonder Of Christmas"
Original Watercolour by Jean Haines
The above painting is part of a Christmas display in "The Frame" Gallery in Odiham, Hampshire To me this painting really has so much to say. Not just about Christmas but life also. And many artists will understand my next words because they are very true.
As a child we are so innocent.We live with our hearts full of hope and excitement. We have the knowledge that exciting things may really happen tomorrow or that magical dreams can come true. We believe a jolly Santa may bring us all we wish for on Christmas Day and with that innocence we choose beforehand gifts we believe will make us happy.
When we grow up over the years we change so dramatically.
That little child in a classroom when told to paint a cat or face will do so without hesitation. They believe they can paint anything at all. Just because they can! Suggest to an adult in a watercolour workshop that they should paint a cat or any other subject for that matter and they will turn around and admit that they can't. They don't know they can't but they believe if they try they will fail. The child in the classroom hasn't stopped to consider this.They've just had a wonderful time painting.
A child simply and innocently enjoys the creative process. No one has told them that whatever they create has to be a huge success and look exactly like the cat or person they are trying to capture.They just have fun and love the experience. Adults put so much pressure on their shoulders of always having to produce a masterpiece. Even though no one else expects them to! Many sadly seem to have lost that joy and sense of wonder in what appears through colour while we work. Or the feeling of pleasure to be gained by simply holding a brush.
A childs masterpiece can end up in the bin or on a fridge door. An adult often feels throwing anything away is an absolute disaster.
But wouldn't it be amazing if everyone could feel that sense of joy a child has? To hold it in their hearts and allow that freedom to flow into their results and lives? No pressure and no worries especially about the results when painting. Just a strong sense of passion for being able to create.
Wouldn't it be great if everyone who feels they can't paint believed that they can and well.
Wouldn't it be brilliant if every painting created brought a sense of achievement and so much pleasure that when others saw the finished piece they too felt happiness?
Maybe I have just explained how I feel when I paint. Full of joy seeing colour flow across a blank piece of paper. Full of hope and excitement of what the results can be. Full of wonder at paintings that leave me breathless in how pigments have interacted on paper.
In fact painting on a blank piece of paper really is almost like opening a Christmas gift. You have no idea what is inside or of your finished result. But the sheer joy of looking forward with hope of it being something wonderful is an experienece that should never be missed.
I wish all sense of doubt and disbelief could be thrown away with discarded wrapping paper. I wish the "gift" of believing positively could be in everyones soul this Christmas. So that all artists from the beginner to the most estbablished of professionals paints from their hearts in 2011.
It could be a wonderful year.