Impression of an Artist

Week after week I visit myself on the canvas of a painting, through the frame of an image or between the words of a paragraph. Do these impressions provide any further insight into my being and my interpretation of my world?

I like to think they do. I like to believe that these creative endeavors cast at least a shadow of truth on what I often think of as my core essence – that part of me that isn’t body or earth-bound in this life time. But is this really a possible truth?

As the paint is chosen, mixed and applied without thought, I like to believe there is a subconscious part of me that knows what it is doing. But maybe it is all accidental fragments of my conscious mind colliding with the paint, the canvas and the movement of my brush.

I am doing a study of blue – a series on the shades of blue. What I am discovering is that blue is more than a colour. Blue is a spiritual void for reflection… as I paint the sea… the shadows of the trees… or the sky. If I had known how wide this void would open up, would I have committed to the series?

Ah, no point in musing about what might have been.

This week I have one 10 X 12 inch cotton canvas underpainting ready for completion. In my imagination the heavy clouds press down with formidable force over the dark seas. May I be able to hold this moment long enough to reach in and pull out something that is the essence of me, of you and of the very world itself.

Sprout question: What impression best describes your creative self?

© 2011 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

24 thoughts on “Impression of an Artist

  1. Terrill – I’m so glad to see you standing there and smiling with some of my best friends, trees. That’s a wonderful photograph.

    I very much enjoyed reading your observation: “What I am discovering is that blue is more than a colour. Blue is a spiritual void for reflection…” I can tell you that’s given me some delicious food for thought.

    Sprout question: What impression best describes your creative self?

    Morning dew on grass (enjoy it when it presents itself–before it evaporates for the day)

    • Laurie these were the most amazing big cedar trees. You would have loved to be in their direct company. Morning dew, ah yes… particularly in early fall after a dry summer here on the island.

  2. Terrill,

    I have had to sit with this statement: “What I am discovering is that blue is more than a colour. Blue is a spiritual void for reflection… as I paint the sea… the shadows of the trees… or the sky. If I had known how wide this void would open up,… ” More power is the smaller statement, “Blue is a spiritual void for reflection…” I am not sure how you mean this, yet somewhere within my creative spirit I understand.

    Sprout question: What impression best describes your creative self?

    What comes to mind is the early morning birds songs as we walk through the wood and fields. There is something creative in the spring songs of birds…

    I am Love, Jeff

    • Thanks for the feedback Jeff. I assume that was an editing suggestion to keep the statement simple and open. Spring song of birds… that does seem to describe how I experience your creative being Jeff. Nice!

      I hope it is clear that what I mean by “void” in this sentence is as a noun for opening not “void” as in a lack of spiritual. Maybe I should have used “opening’ with all the meanings “void” has attached to it? Oh well, that is what rolled off the keyboard… I think we can live with it 🙂

  3. Loved the picture of you, Terrill — relaxed, joyful, engaged. Ready to paint the world — the spirit within — whenever an opportunity presents itself. I think, yes, that something of our essence is given to anything we create. Spiritual sharing, might be a way to look at the process. Perhaps that is why creativity is so powerful, so compelling.

    SQ: Impression & my creative self, hmmm. Flowers I suspect. With a name like Daisy, how can I choose otherwise? 🙂

    Have a lovely day. A pleasure to chat w/you this morning.

    • I so agree Daisy and I have these big Shasta daisies that have naturalized in one part of our yard. I also have the little wild ones as well but it is these big ones I think of when I read your name.

      It was a town day for us on Monday so a little late getting back to respond but I am here just the same. Miss Prissy has a four new tires, a new alternator, new brakes and has had a tune up – almost like having a new truck! She is 20 years old this year and I have had her for 16 of those years. We have done a lot of living together over the years and it looks like we will have a few more to go yet.

  4. I agree with you Terrill, there is a deep part of us – call it the subconscious, soul, whatever – that is available to guide our art if we let it. I can’t tell you how many times I have discovered something wonderful in a photograph that I didn’t “see” in real time. I’m sure I did see it, just not with my conscious, always-analyzing mind.

    Sprout question: What impression best describes your creative self? Light and shadow, calm day and tempest. Give my creative self time, and she will change again.

    • Kat I am glad you mention that about seeing things in photographs that you didn’t realize were there when you took the image. I sometimes wonder what part of me is doing the seeing when that happens. It took me a long time to trust this non-analytical part of me when taking photographs even though I have always trusted this intuitive part of me when drawing and painting.

      Great sprout response Kat… that changing over time I think is easier for the creator than the viewer. I sometimes get asked if I still do… (fill in the blank… I have learned to answer “not at the moment as I am working on … (fill in the blank). In that way I leave the possibility open for the viewer and myself. For example, it took me 30 years to come back to painting with oils – but I did.

  5. Greetings Terrill

    You look sublime &inviting. &joyfull!

    I am Spirit in body. ,as are we allA Zillion particles of vibrating lite and the image of the Goddess within!!

    And everything is infinite

    I believe as we allow the energy to move thru us it changes us and our ever evolving creation.

    Tha painting becomes an entity or life-force of it’s own & we see it with a myriad of intention as we are in the moment

    I am a creation in momentary awareness living alive changing!!!

    • Well hello Shakeira! Good to hear from you.

      I really resonate with “I believe as we allow the energy to move thru us it changes us and our ever evolving creation.

      And also your closing remark “I am a creation in momentary awareness living alive changing!!!

      When I was very young I used to lay on the ground under the trees and marvel at how as each moment passed it would never return or be exactly the same as the next. It was such a delightful mystery to me. I was amazed with this thing we call time… how we counted it and that I was getting older everyday not just on my birthday. I still sometimes lay on the ground and look up into the trees and marvel at this very same thing.

  6. I love looking at water and relaxing all my muscles and then just being – and then the creative bubbles up….

    Blue is my power color and I love the walls in my office and living room because the blue sky shade changes color with what is going on outside – it reminds me to not be stuck, but to keep open as the sky and flow like the water…I often get stuck in worry which is really a fear mode for me…
    Enjoyed your smiling picture – Thank you for sharing

    • Patricia your post is a nice addition to my experiences with blue. I have one painting which I believe we have talked about before which has a dramatic shift with the changing of light. Blue seems to have wonderful ability to adjust to the light that is present – some shades and tones more so I think. I am still discovering.

  7. I was entrapped by your question. “I don’t know how to answer this,” I told my muse. Let’s just visit and not comment. “No, we have to comment,” she told me. And so I read each comment…and then slowly the answer came–clouds. Reaching high, forming allusions in the sky. Thank you for challenging me.

  8. Terrill, I am such a fan of your photography and your paintings and you sharing so prolifically and in a way the world can understand. I am fairly good with art and helping artists and when I see talent from being immersed in it for most of my career, it is such a joy that we’ve met on the web, yet I feel like a sister or one of your kindred spirit friends. Some art I just look, admire and move on but all of your pieces, I actually stop and either walk in or out of them and feel transported on all of them. The messages you share with the viewer is present and “I see you” in your art. What a gift!!!

    Sprout question: What impression best describes your creative self? I look at ballet or just the ballet shoes and “see me” and from that viewpoint, I can express logic in my life and set goals from that impression.

    • Kathy thank you for your kind and generous insight into my work and me as an artist. By the way, because of your comment today I found your post from a month ago recognizing your blogging friends. Thank you for the shout out:)

      “Ballet or just the ballet shoes” – this is so you ~kes/Kathy. So glad you dropped in.

  9. I’m speechless. Why? Well because it has just w/in the last 48 hours come to me to do a 5 part series post on my blog featuring bloggers round the world who are contributing to the well-being arts – and one of my choices was you.

    The 9.0 has rocked this world and everything and everyone in it in such a way as to demand ‘next steps’ from us all. Many are feeling the quake to ‘move forward’ but don’t know how. YOU Terrill provide the ‘organic’ component that so many are seeking. Your art and photos and your approach to living in accordance with the natural rhythm and flow of the earth inspires core essence emergence.

    This post revealed to me exactly why I had you in mind for a guest post. If you are interested please be in touch. And again, as always, thank you so very, very much. . .for being.

    • Alison I what incredible feedback! You have just knocked my socks off and my bare toes are wiggling in the breeze with sheer delight. I would be honoured to do a guest post for you and will email you directly to discuss further.

      There is nothing like a tragedy of the magnitude of a 9.0 earthquake to wake a few more people up to the time-limited offer to live fully and well. I am glad that my posts, art, photography and musings are helpful in this wonderful adventure we call living.

      David and I just got back from a practice run along a relatively flat road with no traffic on our bikes. I haven’t ridden regularly for a good number of years and it has been many more for David. We were grinning with self satisfaction as we loaded the bikes up again to return home. These are the kinds of experiences that are lasting for me. As we peddled along I heard a few frogs croaking away and an eagle calling overhead. There was a miniature horse and burro grazing along side the road so I stopped to say hello. I looked back and there was David peddling along as if he had the world by the tail in full swing – and you know… he did. We both do. Because that is how we choose to see it.

  10. Pingback: HEAVY CLOUD original oil painting by Terrill Welch « Creativepotager's Blog

  11. “What I am discovering is that blue is more than a colour. Blue is a spiritual void for reflection… as I paint the sea… the shadows of the trees… or the sky.”

    Fascinating concept Terrill. Perhaps more than any color with the possible exception of red, blue yields itself to some many interpretations, and frankly I have been ravished by your visual transciption of it at this site for months. Falling snow has always been a creative awakening for me in a number of ways.

    • Sam, snow used to be like this for me when I lived in snow country. Falling snow often led to making a homemade soup and biscuits after a cleaning and polishing the house until it shines and then lighting the wood stove and making a big pot of tea. Then and only then I would bring out my sketchbook or set up my paints. In those days I didn’t have a separate place to do my art work. It meant using the kitchen table. I worked in water colours because I could set them up and take them down quickly. As the snow fell down filling the walkway and driveway, I would do a mental check as to where each of my family members were and I would know life was good and the water and paint would flow onto the 300 Lb paper.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.