To “Find Your Heart and Soul in Sumi e Brushwork”, we gathered at Walker Fine Art, Denver CO in May. As a sumi artist, I led my workshop here. This is a great setting for a new experience in meditative painting!
Here’s what I have to say right now about this process:
“When I teach this workshop on finding your heart and soul in sumi -e brushwork, I help artists and artistic souls get out of their heads or their linear way of thinking, and into their hearts. From there new ways of being can emerge.
To stop or interrupt your usual way of being can open you up to who you really are. Because you are so much more than what you already know.
I find this very liberating. It’s really the ultimate freedom.” – Marilyn Wells
actual sumi e brushwork process
All materials for this first evening were provided by myself, as many participants are not versed in what supplies they might find or bring. In fact, it isn’t easy to find the supplies readily in Denver CO without a lot of direction. (Check out Red Herring Art Supplies though).
After dharma talk and sharing experiences in meditation, I gave some guidance on meditation practice and the importance of the practice as a way to move into your heart and soul, out of or away from your rational, linear way of thinking. This is traditional Zen practice hand in hand with Zen painting.
completed projects in “Finding Your Heart and Soul in Sumi e Brushwork”
The technique section of the workshop included demonstrating how to dilute ink, use it full strength, load your brush, hold your brush, and create a brushstroke.
Ultimately, the actual execution of the painting is sometimes described as “releasing the Chi”, or life energy!
Finally, by the end of the evening, each guest had 6 or 7 paintings completed to the expressions of Zen Haiku, koans or contemporary music, like a selection from Drake even! (Sometimes I amuse myself by finding far afield expressions – equally valid for sumi e expression.)
While I provide practice brushes, here are some of mine to dream on. I counted my current collection – hovering around 50, ranging in prices from under $10 to $350, and I shop hard for the best buys. It’s really great to go shopping for sumi e brushes. Check out Kris’s supplies at Red Herring Art Supply in Lakewood CO, my cohort and friend in the crime of sumi e brushwork.
For future workshops, I will have kits available for beginners to purchase to take home so you can continue your practice and meditation for as long as you are seeking to Find Your Heart and Soul in Sumi e Brushwork.
Or come for another workshop. We’re planning one more at Walker Fine Art for September 10 and another for sure at Mayu Meditation Center on Pearl Street in Denver on Saturday, November 30, 2019. Stay tuned to my blogs and newsletter for updates on several other workshops under contract. The offerings will be limited as to frequency and number of participants, so sign up early.
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