Last night Christian, Shawna and her husband and Karen and i all went to the Postsecret event at UI. It was really awesome. I felt super inspired by Frank Warren and how dedicated he is to this project and its integrity. As I was listening to him talk about how important it is to share our secrets, how it brings hope to others, I couldn't help but feel connected. Last Wednesday I created this piece below. When Christian saw it he immediately ask who the quote was from...to which I replied..."uh, my brain?" It was just something I wrote. Something that needed to come out, that was (I think) a combination of many things I have learned, read, heard and feel. I remember last semester my writing courses talked a lot about the importance of sharing our stories. One author, the Native American writer, M. Scott Momaday once said "Stories take place...." and many have interpreted that quote differently. But I feel that our secrets are like our stories, and that we must be brave enough to tell them. For me telling my stories, whether good, bad or ugly allow for healing, connection, and a way to leave my mark. To me, stories take the place of memory, and we must choose what stories will continue on, what will and will not be remembered carefully. I think that is a lot of what Momaday was trying to convey.
Anyway...I was totally in the front row and Frank pointed at me...but i must've froze/hesitated because the girl next to me spoke up and got a free book. Gaaaah! That's ok, I really took some things away from the presentation. I don't think it was a coincidence that I painted this and wrote it just before Frank spoke similar words. I know it's not famous artist material, but it has meaning...and to me that's more important...more fullfilling. I like that what I paint is messy, unscripted and unorganized. It better represents my life, my personality and perhaps it will speak to someone else. If so, I've succeeded.
Click on picture to enlarge:
Writing reads: "We need to believe that our words are still powerful, that our stories still matter. If we can trust ourselves to be open enough, vulnerable enough, and brave enough to tell them...we can change this place."