My Painting Journey

Drinking Cappuccino, 2005

For over two decades, I tried to make painting a part of my routine. Every few years, I took evening classes to paint realistic pictures in figure drawing, portraiture, or watercolor. Even though my work was fairly decent, after the class ended, I packed away my supplies.

A year after I moved to Los Angeles, I enrolled in an abstract drawing class at UCLA Extension. The instructor, Stephanie Pryor, set up several objects on a platform and taught us how to abstract them until they were unrecognizable. A few weeks later, I brought my acrylic paints to class and used this technique to paint abstract faces from a magazine.

One night after work, I came home to my apartment and scanned my living room for a photo to use to practice what I had learned. A picture of my mom drinking cappuccino stood out. So I grabbed it, set up my art supplies on the floor, and started abstracting her features. As I did this, thoughts of our last conversation bounced through my head and soon feelings welled up inside. As I painted each layer, I let my feelings out through my brush.

Then the glistening came. The heavens opened up and I felt invisible yet real showers of love pour on me as I continued painting. Tingles rushed through my body. Chills streamed through my veins. And my mind reached a new understanding of her, and for the first time, I saw my mother as another human being, with her own opinions and her own inner struggles. She no longer was just my mother.

Words of healing came. Not just mere words that dissipated. But words that penetrated my core. Where I released my irritations, words of healing filled their place. These words spoke from a higher source. Call it God, the Universe, or a Higher Power. I call it my Inner Wisdom. Through painting, I found a direct route to this wisdom. Painting now had a reason. It had real purpose. And I had always known that it could bring me lasting relief. Above all that, it connected me to my Source of all that I need. The connection I felt the night I painted “Drinking Cappuccino” began my painting routine. This journey took me into the depths of my soul, which I had sought to reach my entire life, ever since I could remember. I now found a portal to the pure, intuitive wisdom that resides in all of us. And it was through painting, eventually along with writing, that brought me the wisdom I had always known was buried inside of me.

So in this category on my blog, I will reveal the words of wisdom I received through my body of work, starting at the beginning. In 2005, my abstract portraits, mostly of my family members, began clearing me out of all the unwanted perceptions and beliefs that affected my life in many ways. It has been a challenging yet beautiful journey of which I am so appreciative to have gone through. My purpose for being so transparent on this blog is with the hope that you, too, will be inspired to paint to connect to your inner wisdom for whatever reason you need.

The next post: “Father Daughter.”