I made this relief painting to capture my memories of past silent nights. This required a journey back to my childhood. It required me to remember where it all happened and to imagine how it looked, felt, and influenced me. The tree, the star, and the songs are worked into this piece because they were the strongest memories of the beauty of my past Christmases. I am so glad I took this journey to the past. I have returned with peace, joy, and a sense of gratitude. How lucky I was to experience such joy. How lucky I am to recreate that joy through my “Epiphany Art” at Christmas. It lets me bring that joy into the present moment.
I made a sculpture titled “Outside the Box,” and it started with a small, wooden box. The pieces of curled paper that are spilling out of the box have words on them: misfit, outlier, dissenter, and deviant. They are words that express thoughts I had when I first considered “the outside.” I could have kept the box closed, folded all the simmering thoughts away, and locked the box tight. Instead, I let it open, and I let myself take a turn on my journey. I tried life outside of it.
I see hope in my life story. I can see the hope because I have kept an account of it: on papers with a pencil, upon canvases with a paintbrush, using torn papers, pastels, glitter and ink. “Dancing in the Doghouse” is my story of hope shared so others might see the hope, too.
The flaps and doors that open and close let the viewer move through many moments on my journey: moments that have happened, are happening, and are to come. Doing this three dimensionally creates an awareness of time shifting and changing: a liminal experience.
This Painting is Titled “Portals to Peaceful, Quiet Spaces,” 2022
My paintings are my portals to peaceful, quiet spaces when I can’t even leave my home. I paint the water spigot and the door from under water in this endemic world. I once again recoil to my studio and manage my anxieties in this new liminal in-between.
I met Jesus on the beach in a vision. It happened 8 years ago, but it was so intense that it still feels real and alive. I painted this vision because it has changed me. It’s the new place from which I glean my faith.
I will not make traditional art on this blank canvas. The time has come for me to own my creative process. I will make something abstract and surreal. This journey on my canvas will likely lead to little approval, but at least I am satisfied.
This blog is all about “no promises” and how we find hope despite this reality. Explore how you can center yourself on your journey through the power of creative expression. Creative voice brings the promise of hope despite what lies ahead.
Alisa E. Clark is excited to be part of the 8th Catholic Biennial at the Verostko Center for the Arts and the 2021 juried art exhibit with the International Society of Experimental Artist’s. Alisa was thrilled to share her work with other artists and have other artists share their work with her. These recent adventures have illuminated Alisa’s path because of the joy she experienced and the joyful people she journeyed with. Within the world of creative people exploring creative expression, Alisa finds meaning, value and power. She’s now excited about her next journey on canvas.
Creative process is my greatest tool for processing everything that life throws my way. I share it with others because it might throw them a lifeline, too. This blog is a place to consider the power of artistic expression. If you are an art maker, I urge you to dive deeper into your process. If you are hesitant and holding back from creating, let this be an encouragement to begin making art or returning to a past form of art making. One friend of mine finds peace in coloring books. It’s her way of finding meaning, and spiritual connection. It’s not complicated. It need not be complicated for you, either. What can be your unique creative process? How can it help you find joy, understanding, and respite? This blog is encouragement to explore the answers to these questions.
This blog is an invitation to revamp your art making space. It’s an encouragement to create a welcoming place to stop and create on your journey. It’s a challenge to consider your own solutions. What will work best for you? This is a challenge to rework your space. Make it someplace where you can make more art more often on your journey!
Some of “what’s behind” is full of warm memories and grounding stuff that I want to take with me to my journey’s end. As I celebrate my 53rd birthday, I embrace the life I have ahead as well as “what’s behind,” and I feel completely and totally blessed. You will continue to see me obsessively paint the past, but don’t think that I am stuck there. I choose to be there, and I like it. Life is meant to be lived and remembered. Today, I choose to do both on my journey. Join me.
How do we find happiness? The proper frame of mind is often touted as the key. This can leave people feeling like a moral failure. The bills cannot get paid, the heat is turned off, or a loved one has just passed on. The idea of happiness can seem ludicrous to those in hard places on their journey. How do you find joy despite life’s challenges and struggles? Here are some thoughts for those of us who are trying to find peace amidst the storms.
Consider your journey and the internal work it has done for you. What work do you still need to do so that you can be ready for “What’s Next” and say goodbye to “What Was”? What steps do you need to take so that you can look forward with hope? Find a way to say “Goodbye” so that you can let go when it’s time. “Paradise Lost” brings me strange peace. It has been my way of being ready. It’s your journey. Find your way. Then, share what you learn on the journey.
Your journey can take an interesting turn. You can make something. It doesn’t have to look real and it doesn’t have to make sense to anyone else. Find your own way of sharing your story. I use birds, trees, swirls, apples, and objects to communicate through my work. What can you use to communicate your journey on canvas? Maybe this blog won’t compel you to share your journey here, but I hope it compels you to explore your options for sharing your own journey. May you find the freedom that I find when I create.
I see that every stroke I’ve made and every word I’ve written has been an attempt to sort things out for myself- to find my meaning. I see that my creative process has always been central for me. I understand that my spirituality has always mattered even though how I express it has changed form. The biggest theme, however, is hope. I’ve never given up on it even when my words and works were darkest. I have always been convinced that hope is here.
I have walked in an emptiness, confusion, and disorientation for a long, long time: struggling to be at peace with all of this but returning to the same tumultuous place. I have finally crossed over from struggle to new peace. I can feel the line I have crossed over. I can feel the difference. I can feel the shift inside of me. I am so much less afraid of what’s different and so much less afraid of what’s different about me. I look back on this liminal space—this in-between space where I have tossed, turned and hovered for so long. With this retrospect, I now see its value. All those years of incubating have given me fresh eyes. They see something new and truer about you and me, and that is all together very different.
What’s so wrong about going back in time and visiting a place that you’re happy to be in? If my paintings let me do that, I’ve just taken a little journey and I’ll be back to the present soon enough! How does your creative practice help you on your journey? Does it let you go places you couldn’t otherwise go? Consider that in spite of the fact that we don’t even know each other, we will be traveling together on this journey. We do this through the simple act of choosing to go where our canvas takes us. Onward!
There is no end to what we can share about this Universal Christ. This is just one conversation in just one little corner of the world. This Christ is vast and He/She can be represented in countless ways. How do you see this Christ?
On every single page of my story you will find God’s hand. He has always been there. You can expect to find Him inside every single one of my paintings. He is always in my story.