Act 8: Spring

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I’m on a creative journey and, this year, I’ve challenged myself to 100 Acts of Creativity

The past week has felt quite different. Spring is definitely here and the wind has calmed down so it’s feeling incredible to be outside. So this week I’m looking for any excuse to get out in the sun. A couple of weeks ago I heard Emma Mitchell talking to Clare Balding about forest bathing. It’s a Japanese concept (Shinrin Yoku) which advocates spending time in nature to reduce stress and improve wellbeing. Their discussion really struck a chord. To me, using nature to help feel better is incredibly intuitive but I was surprised by the power that it held for Emma. Reading around the subject a bit lead me to the Instagram page of the naturally crafty Laura Brand of thejoyjournal. I love her feed where she shares, amongst other stuff, arty things to do with nature. One of her latest post was on painting with “natural debris” scavenged from the wilderness! As last you know from last week’s blog post, artists steal, so I thought “here we go, two for the price of one, steal from nature and steal from Laura! Double artist”. And this was the result…

OK. If I was being judgey I’d say it’s a bit of a mess. But what do I like about it? It took me outside. Only for a few moments, it was cold this morning, but it made me get out for some air. It made me look around and notice stuff that I might want to use. I stopped, I heard the birds, I felt a chill on my skin, I felt alive and happy and free. As if that wasn’t enough. I love how this is a snapshot of the season. If I did this in January or July wouldn’t look the same. I’d have found different leaves, they would have been a different colour and I’d have probably used a different colour palette.

If you’d like to find out more about nature and it’s power over us please take a look at Emma’s beautiful new book. I’ve put a link to this below. Unfortunately/fortunately you can’t get the brushes I used today on Amazon but I’ve put a link to the paint. Pretty much a lifetime supply of the stuff! Well worth the money.

If you like getting crafty outside I can think of no better recommendation than getting down to the Earth Living Festival in Caversham, Reading on May 11th for a celebration of creativity, wellbeing and nature!

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