Perfekshunism

I bought an ukulele and have begun teaching myself a few cords. I’m also taking a script writing class and continue experimentation with watercolors (as opposed to the acrylic paints, with which I’m much more comfortable). I’m really making a lot of effort to continue learning wherever and whenever possible.

All this on an island where I am constantly surrounded by and do not speak the native language and am trying to absorb and understand a culture that is seemingly entirely separate from my own.

… and it’s working. I’m not putting pressure on myself to learn any of these now. In fact, I’m giving myself permission to be awful at everything I’m attempting to learn. THAT permission to fail is much more foreign to me than the language here and I secretly love it. I love my immature paintings, fumbled strummed cords and garbled language and misunderstandings. Because that permission to fail is so foreign and thrilling… it’s exciting to finish something and say “wow, I really fucked that up – and it’s okay!”

Weeee!

What will I fuck up next? surfing? Well, maybe I won’t go quite that far… but I could try making nice with someone I really don’t like… or perhaps shutting the hell up when every fiber of my being wants to shout about something.

I’ll tell you what – something that’s been really pretty cool is giving myself permission to fail while meditating. Actually, that may just be the key to meditating for me… FAILURE to keep my mind in one place for more than a millisecond!

Okay, so to wrap this up… I’m discovering that my success in any one attempt/field/project does not define me. My ATTEMPT and the honest outcome of it – now that’s the sweet stuff.

Define me? Oh, who the hell cares. I don’t think I really need to do that anymore. Do you?

I know full well that most of these will get better with time. I also know full well that my [perfectionist] nature is also getting better with time. Who knows, a few more awful renditions of Under the Boardwalk on my ukulele, another awful scene written by Donna and another mispronunciation of a really common name here in Hawaii and I just may learn to never again beat myself up for anything less than perfection!

The Second Rule of Art Club…

Do not talk about the actual piece of private art in Art Club

Dictionary.com says that art is: the quality, production, expression, or realm, according to aesthetic principles, of what is beautiful, appealing, or of more than ordinary significance.

But who is the observer? Who gets to define what is beautiful and “more than ordinary significance?”

Okay, I do. And I say that any time you create something – a painting, poem, story, sculpture or song – just for the growth it brings into your life [and thereby, the lives of all of us], THAT is more than ordinary significance! So do it. And do it knowing that you and I are the judges of it. I already love it… so we’re all halfway there, right?

BUT, let me be really clear that I’m not suggesting anyone stop creating art for general consumption or with the hopes of being generally consumed. Hey, I’ve got paintings I’ll frame someday and I really hope people will look at them and tell me how lovely they are. I’ll also continue to be a director and actress, for public viewing. This is about something separate.

This is about one painting just for me.

Honestly, the white canvas is still sitting on my easel. Isn’t that weird? For something that may someday be exhibited on my hallway wall, I am at no loss for ideas and action. For something that is precious enough to keep secret and private, I am as blank as that canvas.

Let me tell you, there ain’t nothin’ real special about that blank canvas. The hell? Why can’t I decide what to paint just for myself? Jeez, do I think this is MORE important than general consumption fodder?

Well, well, well, wouldn’t that be interesting?

I still don’t have any ideas for that canvas… will keep you posted…