Thursday, November 14, 2013
A Story of Transformation and The Magic of Myth
Several years ago, I discovered Squam Art Workshops. The Yarn Harlot had posted something about it, and curious, I followed the link and was immediately intimidated. This art workshop was for real artists! I'm not an artist! If I go, I'll be exposed as a fraud! And with a wistful sigh, I closed the page and didn't think about it again. At least, not until she posted again about the Spring session. Again, I followed the link. And huzzah! It was a knitting retreat, with some other artsy stuff going on. I could so attend a knitting retreat! So I registered in and in early June 2011, embarked on a solo road trip to Holderness, NH. At registration, I was handed a beautiful tote bag filled with goodies, one of which was a little packet of inspirational sayings and a book called the journal, volume 1. That night as I was snuggled deep under the covers, I read them and got just the least bit teary; the writings struck a chord deep inside me and I felt like I had come home. Overall, the Squam experience was good. I enjoyed my cabin mates. The knitting classes I took were wonderful. All in all, it was a nice knitting retreat. I drove back home and settled back into post-vacation life. But a change had started, a sea change of sorts. And I was totally unaware of it, until I took an online art class, hosted by Squam and taught by Alena Hennessey. It sort of blew me away. I started looking at the world differently, focusing in on color, and texture, and the play of light and shadow. I created my first real art in that class and a something started to crack open. Perhaps it was my soul, perhaps it was my heart. Perhaps it was both. And I could not wait until the next Squam. My second Squam was better than the first. I arrived with my new eyes and a heart that was more open. Predictably, I once again took all knitting classes (because I'm not an artist). And once again, I left subtly changed. My third Squam, Squam by Sea, was held in the Outer Banks and that was the Squam where I was blown wide open. I took a three-day painting workshop by Flora Bowley and while my paintings were clunky and awkward, they were my paintings! And it was at that Squam that I realized the transformation I was experiencing. Why do I mention this? Elizabeth Duvivier, the founder of Squam Art Workshops, has just opened registration for an online seminar called The Magic of Myth that she is teaching. And I signed up for it, partly because Elizabeth is teaching it and partly because…I'm not sure why. Maybe it's because, for some reason, myth makes me uncomfortable, and writing my own story (I don't have any stories to tell and definitely not mythic stories!) just doesn't feel right. But after reading Women Who Run with the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estes, I found that some of the tales and archetypes do resonate and maybe, just maybe, I do have a mythic story to tell. And thought of telling that story? Very scary. And therefore, the transformation continues.