In Need of Grace to Paint and to Give

Why do I torture myself so? I ask myself this every time I start a new portrait.

The beginning seems so easy: ideas grace the mind…an outline drawn…the hollow of a mystical person appears.

The Giver in Process 1

But then it doesn’t take long for excitement to give way to feelings of helplessness as I enter into that dark space between the envisioned creation and ineptness.

Yes, sometimes painting can be torturous—wrestling with uncertainty, wandering in aimlessness, facing the impossible.

And then just about the time I’m tempted to give up, the face forming on the canvas looks into my eyes and begs for release—to be created, to be born. She seems to have a message to give, and I feel a sense of compulsion to make it possible. But I can’t promise her a thing. I don’t know if I can rescue her let alone make her into something lovely that speaks to the heart.



About JoDee Luna

“I’m lost in a love affair with portrait painting!” JoDee Luna confesses. This author, artist, and educator describes herself as a creative eclectic due to her diverse history, multiple talents, and various career pursuits. She enjoys a host of creative expressions: mixed media, mask making, floral designing, photography, sculpture, and gardening. JoDee believes the creative process infuses her with the courage to try on new artistic identities, take inspired risks, and explore imaginative ideas. She seeks to share her insights with others through her book, Refrain from the Identical: Insight and Inspiration for Creative Eclectics and website by the same name, Both provide helpful tips and inspiration for artistic multi-taskers, those who enjoy various forms of artistic expression.
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