Regina’s Reflections: A cycle of death and rebirth as an artist

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One of the most poignant quotes I’ve read about being an artist (and I believe that word is synonymous with being ALIVE) is from The Courage To Create by Rollo May. This quote so accurately describes my experience- daily, monthly and yearly. My whole life has been a cycle of inspiration and desolation. Death and rebirth. Courage and fear. Optimism and depression. I am sustained by metaphors and visual symbols. (is that the same thing?)

“Zeus was outraged. He decreed that Prometheus be punished by being bound to Mount Caucasus, where a vulture was to come each morning and eat away his liver which would grow again at night. This element in the myth is a vivid symbol of the creative process. All artists have at some time had the experience at the end of the day of feeling tire, spent and so certain they can never express their vision that they vow to forget it and start all over again on something the next morning. But during the night their “liver grows back again.” They arise full of energy and go back with renewed hope to their task, again to strive in the smithy of their soul.”

It is hard to be in an artist, to work in service to others, for my work to be an expression of my heart and soul for all to see and judge, to put a price tag on my , to photograph all of my friends’ and clients’ babies when I’ve longed for my own for so many years and have not been able to have one. It would be much easier to move to France where I don’t know anyone and start some sort of a garden business or get a job working for Anthropologie and be surrounded by beautiful meaningless things all day long. I’ve considered both options. Often. But I desperately want my life to matter, to make a difference, to have a lasting impact. And I love to photograph. I love my friends and my clients and love being a part of their lives. It fills me up. But to be honest, it also empties me out- at the same time somehow. So after ten years of pouring everything I had into my business, I now feel compelled to make time to be filled back up. That means MAKING the time to go for walks, for hikes, for yoga class, to spend time working in my garden and to cook. It means spending time reading, doing my own personal projects and just puttering around the house rearranging and organizing cabinets. Did you know I am obsessed with organizing? It’s true. I think it’s not so much that I’m a control freak, it’s more that my heart and my heart are both so saturated to the brim ALL the time that I require my surroundings to be in order so I can get anything done. I’ve had an idea for a professional organizing business in the back of my head for years called “Muddle Jumping”. Juli has actually designed the webpage for me. I am passionate about helping people dig out of material clutter so they can engage in this world in a real way. Someday maybe… in the meantime, I do it for friends.

The image above is also from . It is in the Kew Garden last April. It is a different sort of image for my collection. It feels very Jumanji to me. It might be one of the only images I have that represents hibernation.

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