Color OUTSIDE the lines

color outside the linesFor my artist date a few weeks ago, I signed up for a 2-hour art class at ArtSpot in Edmonds. I had no idea what to expect, but it was advertised as an Artist’s Way function, and it seemed to fit the bill.

There were only a few students, and I was there early. The teacher swept me into the back room and asked what brought me. I told her about The Artist’s Way and about my on-going love of art and art-making, all the aborted projects at home, my drawing classes in college (from which I withdrew, every time). “What’s up with that?” she asked, not really paying attention (or so it seemed), and busily laying out her materials.

I told her my mother’s story about me as a little girl, watching my older brother color in a coloring book and refusing to take part until I was able to color perfectly, inside the lines. “Oh!” My teacher’s face lit up. “You must color OUTSIDE the lines!”

We worked with gelli plates to create our art, something entirely new for me, by the way. It was a little like finger-painting, just playing with several layers of acrylic paints and patterns, applying each one in a more or less systematic way to a block or a small piece of canvas (I did both). When we were finished with the gelli’s, our instructor wanted us to write I AM ENOUGH on the finished product. On my first project, I instead wrote COLOR OUTSIDE THE LINES. On my blue one, I wrote (in paint, very sloppy) “I am enough,” but I later covered it up and tried to turn the projeangelct into an angel, like one I’d seen in the studio. (Copying was encouraged.)

I wasn’t entirely pleased with how these turned out (that darned perfectionism!), but my teacher said it didn’t matter. “This is about process, not product. Do it again! Have fun!”

And I did have fun.

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