About a Painting...
November 23, 2021
I have been without a studio space for some time. A niche in my bedroom has been a makeshift work area for the past couple of years. Meanwhile, as I've already shared in previous posts, my wee studio on a lake about 40 minutes from my home is almost finished and I foresee a lot of time there in the near future. I used to have a really cute little studio space in Fort Langley. It was just down the street from where I currently live and on a street that holds a dear spot in my heart for my father Francis and my favourite Saint, St. Francis of Asissi...but I digress. Since moving out of the studio my painting on large scale canvases has been somewhat curtailed. I'm itching to get back to it!
One of the last larger paintings that I completed was in the fall of 2018. My older brother Dan was dying in hospital and I had just returned from seeing him for one of the last times. I started painting on a large canvas and was listening to music and was overcome with emotion. The tears were flowing as was the paint. At one point I sat down and stared at the canvas until I started to see three figures emerging from the colours and I proceeded to paint them and the rest of the painting into the wee hours. This was a profound experience. It was very therapeutic and like I was being guided. When I posted a picture of the painting on social media it was apparent that there was something about this painting that spoke to quite a few people. A few days later I came across a poem that seemed to express so perfectly what I have often felt. This idea of a "too much woman" resonated with me as it was something that was too often suggested to me as I was growing up - and throughout my life at various times. Of being "too emotional", "too sensitive", etc...I think that these so-called feminine characteristics have been deemed as weaknesses in the past, but the paradigm is shifting on that one. I believe that more and more the wild feminine prevails. It is a strong force, and is about being fully alive and engaged in life. Living a life on purpose. Being unapologetic about feelings and the expression of human emotions. This is an exciting time for people like me, and there are many of us too much women! This is strength!!
Too Much Woman
"There she is. . . the “too much” woman. The one who loves too hard, feels too deeply, asks too often, desires too much.
There she is taking up too much space, with her laughter, her curves, her honesty, her sexuality. Her presence is as tall as a tree, as wide as a mountain. Her energy occupies every crevice of the room. Too much space she takes.
There she is causing a ruckus with her persistent wanting, too much wanting. She desires a lot, wants everything—too much happiness, too much alone time, too much pleasure. She’ll go through brimstone, murky river, and hellfire to get it. She’ll risk all to quell the longings of her heart and body. This makes her dangerous.
She is dangerous.
And there she goes, that “too much” woman, making people think too much, feel too much, swoon too much. She with her authentic prose and a self-assuredness in the way she carries herself. She with her belly laughs and her insatiable appetite and her proneness to fiery passion. All eyes on her, thinking she’s hot shit.
Oh, that “too much” woman. . . too loud, too vibrant, too honest, too emotional, too smart, too intense, too pretty, too difficult, too sensitive, too wild, too intimidating, too successful, too fat, too strong, too political, too joyous, too needy—too much.
She should simmer down a bit, be taken down a couple notches.
Someone should put her back in a more respectable place. Someone should tell her.
Here I am. . . the Too Much Woman, with my too-tender heart and my too-much emotions.
A hedonist, feminist, pleasure seeker, empath. I want a lot—justice, sincerity, spaciousness, ease, intimacy, actualization, respect, to be seen, to be understood, your undivided attention, and all of your promises to be kept.
I’ve been called high maintenance because I want what I want, and intimidating because of the space I occupy. I’ve been called selfish because I am self-loving. I’ve been called a witch because
I know how to heal myself.
And still. . . I rise. Still, I want and feel and ask and risk and take up space.
Us Too Much Women have been facing extermination for centuries—we are so afraid of her, terrified of her big presence, of the way she commands respect and wields the truth of her feelings. We’ve been trying to stifle the Too Much Woman for ions
—in our sisters, in our wives, in our daughters. And even now, even today, we shame the Too Much Woman for her bigness, for her wanting, for her passionate nature.
And still. . . she thrives.
In my own world and before my very eyes, I am witnessing the reclamation and rising up of the Too Much Woman. That Too Much Woman is also known to some as Wild Woman or the Divine Feminine. In any case, she is me, she is you, and she is loving that she’s finally, finally getting some airtime.
If you’ve ever been called “too much,” or “overly emotional,” or “bitchy,” or “stuck up,” you are likely a Too Much Woman.
And if you are. . . I implore you to embrace all that you are—all of your depth, all of your vastness; to not hold yourself in, and to never abandon yourself, your bigness, your radiance.
Forget everything you’ve heard—your too muchness is a gift; oh yes, one that can heal, incite, liberate, and cut straight to the heart of things.
Do not be afraid of this gift, and let no one shy you away from it. Your too muchness is magic, is medicine. It can change the world.
So please, Too Much Woman: Ask. Seek. Desire. Expand. Move. Feel. Be.
Make your waves, fan your flames, give your chills."
~~~ Ev'Yan Whitney
(with much gratitude for these words that speak to the too much women of the world)
I have received several requests for prints from people and in order to make it easier I have uploaded this piece to an online gallery with a printer. This enables people to custom print the image as per their specifications. You may link to the online gallery here:
Here is an example of a giclee print from www.canadaoncanvas.com that a young woman purchased and had customized to cover her bathroom mirror:
Thank you for your support and appreciation!
Excitement is in the Air!!
November 19, 2021
What an exciting time! I recently attended a healing retreat for a combination of personal and professional reasons. It has proven to be one of the most transformative experiences of my life. Not only have I made huge advances in terms of the personal issues that I've been working through - it's also effected an enormous shift in how I approach all aspects of my life. I feel enormously grateful. It's like a veil has been lifted and certain things that used to seem important no longer are. My fuller appreciation for the sacredness of time and how I spend it has also deepened. I will continue to align my values, especially of authenticity and integrity with everything and everyone that I am involved with. Grateful to be able to grow and learn.
Things have been really picking up in terms of my art and my life in general. I have several art projects and collaborations on the go and it's invigorating.
It feels like all the things that I have worked on up until this point in my life are starting to bear fruit. It's delicious!!
Meanwhile, the little art studio on the lake is now almost finished and I just have a few final touches to do before I occupy the space. It's a magical place and I look forward to being able to dream and play from there. I also envision hosting small mini-retreats there with people who want to enjoy the outdoors and make art for a day or two. My teen daughter is already planning on having a couple of girlfriends there and I hope that the space inspires their creativity. This gorgeous sunset photo was taken from outside my studio door!
I feel incredibly grateful for these opportunities and will be able to share more details in the weeks to come!