These have been my companions today. We have played with paper and ideas and had fun inventing new works of art. I have eleven drawers of pens, pencils, markers, inks and almost every kind of writing instrument you can imagine. When I am in the studio working on new art I pull out the ones I plan to use and pile them up on my work table. As I write I change from one pen or pencil to a marker then crayon then brush pen as quickly as my hand can move. My work tends to be extemporaneous. I have an idea and I go with it, which means I also fail a lot…lots of crumpled paper and marked up pages. 

As you can imagine my weakness is paper and pens. When we travel I enjoy going to stores and seeing what they have to offer that I have never seen. With eleven drawers I have plenty of space to store my new treasures. I enjoy experimenting and figuring out how to get my idea from my head onto the piece of paper. It also means I get frustrated when I think one thing and it does not get onto the paper the same way I imagined. I’ve had to ‘give up’ an idea for now and work on waht actually developed rather than stay flummoxed. I have a new mat I created that turned out nothing like I imagined. I’ve had a couple weeks to get used to what did turn out, and now I am okay with it. This pile of pens worked with me today to put words inside that mat…when it’s done I will show you. 

It took me a while to realize these tools were companions not just tools. I have been doing calligraphy since 1989, and yet I am not the most talented calligrapher you will ever see. There are people who will forget more than I will ever know about some of these instruments. I am humbled when I am in their presence. However, I will say I am versatile and able to adapt well to new, different, colorful and thought provoking ideas. I enjoy being impromptu and carefree when I create. I truly forget everything when I am amongst these colorful friends. 

I hope you have friends and companions like these in your world…somewhere or something you do that makes you feel alive and creative and talented and worthy. I hope you can feel the ideas popping into your mind and give yourself the freedom to create without judgement. It’s amazing how different the world looks when I leave this table…all things are brighter, more beautiful and anything is possible. Just pop off the cap and let go!