My son is staying with me and his younger brother until he finds new transportation (his car was demolished during the hail storm in Oklahoma City last Sunday). Among his things left lying around the house, I found a book he is reading. It is entitled, "The Rock Warrior's Way, Mental Training for Climbers", by Arno Ilgner. I sat down to read a few pages of the book and was absolutely hooked in. I found so many correlations between the sport of rock climbing, living life and being an artist. I was especially taken by this quote from the book, "Regardless of the source of the Ego's expectations, the result is the same: we are slaves to externally derived influences, rather than being the masters of our internal mental environments."
What struck me about these words is that, as artists, especially when we are just learning how to do something new, we struggle with outside opinions and criticism. We struggle with negative judgments and criticism from our own conscience and unconscious thoughts and opinions about ourselves. But I think more so, we worry about what others are going to think about what we have produced. Being in a classroom, learning new ideas, skills and concepts is very intimidating. It reminds me of what it must be like to climb a rock. Very scary.
I am very proud of my son. He has, at a young age, decided to face incredible fears and is adventuring through life. I am inspired by him and his willingness to travel to new "heights", not only with his climbing, but with his entire existence. I am motivated to face the fears I have about being a painter and want to adventure through the process to try to produce work that I love - that which comes from inside of me and to "master my internal mental environment."
Thanks to all of you who entrusted a part of your artistic education to me. It has been an incredible experience to see what all of you produced during the FIRST "Atelier". I can't wait for the next one to begin and to climb those very tall rocks with you. ~Leslie
Remember... we're having a party to celebrate your success!
Marc and Elaine Weinmeister
Sunday, May 23rd @ 2:00
I am looking forward to seeing you!