Are You Beholding?
“The common eye sees only the outside of things and judges by that, but the seeing eye pierces through and reads the heart and the soul, finding there capacities which the outside didn’t indicate or promise, and which the other kind couldn’t detect.”
~ Mark Twain
Beauty - it always surrounds us if we take the time to look. Sometimes you must give yourself opportunities to behold it. There’s plenty of ugliness in our world, but there is even more beauty. I’m a firm believer that we all learn and grow by taking as many chances as possible to seek out art and beauty whenever and wherever you can!
Perception of beauty varies from person to person and moment to moment – it is transient and impossible to judge objectively. I think about this a lot when juried art shows roll around. People new to the experience always want to understand what will make THEIR piece a winner. The truth is you simply must paint your own truth with the best skills you have. It will either resonate with that judge on that day, or it won’t.
Defining beauty is complex because of our different backgrounds, personalities, and social circles. What resonates with each person and what they find beautiful is heavily influenced by their individual lived experience. Ask what the most beautiful thing is, and people are likely to answer with something reflective of someone or something they love. It always fascinates me to learn what does (and does not) resonate with different people. It is like a tiny peek into their inner being.
How art catches our eye, encourages us to look and linger, and captivates our mind and soul occur differently within each of us. So, it’s true that “Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder.” The person who is observing gets to decide what is beautiful. To be a beholder, you must pay attention. If you look beyond the obvious, in pursuit of true beauty, what you find staring back at you is often, in some ways, a reflection of yourself.
Have you ever caught a glimpse of something and felt its beauty take your breath away? Beauty is not a material thing, it’s something we experience. We see thousands of sunsets, but we only experience a small number of them as beautiful, and an even smaller number as exquisite. The difference between a mundane, ignored sunset and a beautiful one lies in the quality of our attention and the nuance of that moment. Beholding goes beyond simple seeing. To behold something is to hold in your consciousness, to be more deeply aware. What we behold in this way fills our mind with wonder and with awe. So, as you go through your day, ask yourself: Are you beholding?
Looking for some fun places to behold some new beauty?
This is the big annual show for the Crooked Creek Art League. One of the largest shows in the Midlands, the show this year has 61 artists and 158 pieces of awesome artwork (including three by yours truly). The show is free to visit. It is on display now through April 1 at Crooked Creek Park in Chapin. Visit in person or view the show online. Vote for your favorite for the People's Choice Award.
My next public event will be as an exhibiting artist at the 2023 Festival of Gardens. I will be painting live on location and exhibiting originals and prints for sale all day Saturday April 22. Hosted in gorgeous gardens, there is sure to be beauty in abundance as this year's festival will be held in historic Shandon. Registration will open 9 am on Saturday, April 22 and 12:30 pm on Sunday, April 23 at St. John’s Episcopal Church in the gym. Park on Holly Street. Registration closes one hour prior to the gardens closing. You can also buy tickets online in advance.
Hope to see you there!!
I loved getting to see everyone that visited my booth and purchased art at the Cottontown Art Crawl - THANK YOU! And, my gratitude to the newest members of the Insiders Email List: Angie, Cindi, David, Donna, Jenna, John, Judy, Liz, Natalie, Shane, and Susan. WELCOME!! I'm so glad you've joined us. I deeply appreciate you trusting me with your email and following along on the journey.
Thank you so much for taking the time to read my messages. Let me know what you think, I love hearing from you! Or, just say hi. I like it when people say hi.
Until next time,
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