Today I committed to paint when my schedule said to paint. At 11:20 I had finished my brunch so I got a bone for the puppy and put him in his crate and he actually started chewing on the bone instead of going into his little tiny whines that he does when he doesn’t want to do something. I was ecstatic.
I set up my music and went into the art room for the first time in three weeks. In my mind I had an image of what I wanted the painting to look like. I started this particular painting shortly after my favourite dog in the whole world passed away when he got cancer for the second time. I named the painting “grief” and have not painted on it since November. Jules died at the end of October.
Jules was an 85 lb Husky crossed with Greater Swiss Mountain. He had the softest ears. He looked menacing at times, but he was a huge people lover and all it would take was a treat, or a rub to become Jules’ friend. He was a stubborn dog, and I learned all about training this kind of dog, I learned to be firm, consistent, have patience and he was so much fun.
I set the canvas on the easel and looked at it. To me seemed to spill out anger instead of grief, there were lots of harsh black and dark blue lines, there was nothing soft about the image at all. It was not how I wanted to remember my fun loving, people friendly dog. I still wanted to use the colour blue as it symbolizes the grief I felt and still do sometimes. I wanted it to be much softer and peaceful, as time has passed so I am being more gentle with myself, when I feel sad for the loss of this amazing dog.
I started adding white paint to the canvas and was engrossed for at least half an hour when I saw a flash of white on my front porch. I went out to investigate. It was a husky, with bright blue eyes like Jules had, although this dog was all white except for the mud on its paws. I brought the new dog inside the house to see if it had tags.
There was a moment where I thought, “well this is odd, I am thinking about my husky and painting white and I find this husky who is all white, maybe it’s a sign that we need to keep this dog.” That moment passed when I introduced the new husky to my Australian Shepherd x Collie puppy and remembered that two dogs can be way more work! I found that the dog did have tags, and I gave the owner a call and he came and got her. My husky used to run away sometimes as well and I was always to relieved when I got a phone call saying that some nice person had found my dog. (As an aside, I would never keep someone else’s dog!!)
Wondering what it all means, I think of synchronicity and Julia Cameron’s writing on the the subject. “The hand of God, or good, activated by our own hand when we act in behalf of our truest dreams, when we commit to our own soul.”
For me it’s a victory against resistance as I painted, when I thought I could not. The white husky incident brought me a little peace as I contemplated the painting after I finished my painting session. I am left with the realization that I have turned the corner on this painting, it is much softer, and quite a bit closer to the image I have in my head for it.