Three years ago today I experienced a volcanic eruption while living on the Big Island of Hawaii. For several days leading up to the eruption, we felt so many earthquakes that we began taking motion sickness pills. The ground shook so much that we felt like we were living on a boat!
On the night of the first eruption, we were nearly out the door to attend a farm-to-table dinner with friends. An unexpected call from my father-in-law changed all of that: "Turn on your television!" We watched in utter shock and bewilderment as the first fissure erupted just a mile from our home.
It's a really surreal experience: To not be able to count on the ground beneath you staying still, packing only your most necessary and prized possessions into a suitcase, wearing a gas mask because the sulfur dioxide emitted from the volcano causes respiratory failure and kills all of the green flora we've all come to associate with Hawaii.
In all honesty, I'm not a huge fan of looking back and reliving the past. The past is over. There is only new land, new possibilities and opportunities before us. But I do think the past informs the present.
There is a reason my paintings are what they are: mindful meditations on canvas, peace emitting, inspiring, an homage to place and belonging. Someone recently described my paintings as "sacred". I really appreciate that. As a result of my life's experiences (experiencing a volcanic eruption is only the tip of the iceberg!) I strive to channel presence, serenity and gratitude into all of my paintings. After all the movement and transition I've experienced, I realized that the only environment we can control is our internal landscape.
This blog was created to share my belief that the art-making process is a catalyst for transformation and personal empowerment. I am living proof.