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Posts Tagged ‘masked figure’

Artists often develop what might be called ‘a visual language.’ They become known for recognizable (but still often mysterious) symbols, and many also revisit ideas and subjects that continue to hold challenge and fascination. (more…)

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"Dancing with the Devil" c. Susan Sorrell Hill

“Dancing with the Devil” © Susan Sorrell Hill

The Illustration Friday word of the week is disguise.

A gregarious friend once confessed that he found parties and large gatherings exceedingly stressful. “How can that be?” this terminally-shy wallflower thought. He’d always seemed so confidant, so ‘in his element’ in a social arena that was stuff of my own personal nightmares. But then he went on to say that it was stressful because he was a different person in every relationship and with every person he knew. And that he didn’t know who to be when faced with all of those people at once.

That conversation stuck with me for a long time. Only recently I realized that neither of us felt good enough, essentially worthy. Neither of us was sure that people would like us, just as we were. My coping method was habitual withdrawal, and his adaption was wearing a disguise in each situation. But essentially the same dilemma. It was that same old impediment, a belief in a Hostile Universe.

Does a chameleon feels unworthy or stressed? Surely not. So there must be a healthy way to stay connected to one’s own essential Self—and still be adaptable to changing circumstance, environment and people. I’m still looking for that balance. Believing that the Universe is actually friendly seems to be the key.

“Dancing with the Devil”       (pen & ink)

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"Persona" c. Susan Sorrell Hill

“Persona” c. Susan Sorrell Hill

The Illustration Friday word of the week is spirit.

‘Tis the season for gentle reminders and reassurances

Desiderata

Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit. ❦ If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time. Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism. ❦ Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass. ❦ Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. ❦ Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. ❦ Strive to be happy.

This brilliant summation was written by the American writer, Max Ehrmann in 1927. Still works, yes?

SusanHillAs promised ages ago (and I’ll get better at this) — photos of the painting in progress:

“Persona”    (watercolor, pen & ink,gouache)      ❅❅ Prints and the original will be available at some point…

Traced down, inked, stretched and resist masque in place. Now for the watercolor washes...

Traced down, inked, stretched and resist masque in place. Now for the watercolor washes.

The first watercolor washes safely down and the resist masque removed.

The first watercolor washes safely down and the resist masque removed.

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