The January theme for the Sketchbook Challenge is "Doodling", and who doesn't have pages filled with mindless (or intentional) doodles? I've tried my hand at "Zentangles", "Zendoodles", "Zendalas", whatever your title of choice is. I didn't even know it had a name for the first ten years, then suddenly I discovered that what I was doing was part of a "movement". Who knew?
When I get stuck for a subject or focus for my art journaling, which is often, I try to let go of all expectation and just splash around with color. Most often I find myself working in a circular pattern, and they inevitably turn into a mandala. My mandala's don't always have meaning, sometimes they just have feeling and for me that feeling comes from color.
Many people use mandalas for meditation. The circle has a profoundly calming effect on the mind and body. I used to do this more years ago, when I didn't have children. Sadly, meditation isn't something I get a lot of time for these days, but I will steel away to a corner every now and again with this particular mandala and just sit.
There is a lot of meaning in this one. It was done shortly after I bought my son home from hospital. I remember sitting at the quiet end of the dining room table, he was asleep in his crib, I could hear the gentle swooshing of the oxygen flowing from the massive tanks littered around the house. I could see the cannula tubing snaked across the floor, disappearing into his crib, tangling with the lines from his heart/lung monitors. He was so tiny, only 6lbs at 6 months, it was frightening, so I would imagine a garden growing around him, hiding all those hideous medical necessities keeping him alive. I imagined birds and butterflies twittering around the tops of the tanks, resting on his pillow, protecting him.
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Thanks for checking in. xx