Oil and water

Symbols and Intuitive Art: Are the two like Oil and Water?

The tree that arises from imagination, not a symbol!!

What happens when you mix oil and water? They separate.

I turned to the children’s website Wonderopolis to refresh my memory why this is so.

“Water molecules are polar molecules. That means one end of the molecule has a positive charge and the other end has a negative charge. This allows water molecules to bond together. Oil molecules, on the other hand, are non-polar.”

Now if I may stretch the metaphor, intuitive art is like water. There’s a polar opposite play between what we think we know we’re drawing and what actually appears on the paper.

When we create from intuition we’re working with feelings and vague impressions that translate into colors and forms, and show up on the paper as we draw.

A beautiful harmony emerges from this innocent play of form and color, and I’d like to emphasize, the details that lead us deeper into our own creative process.

Now what happens when we add “oil” to an intuitive drawing? By oil, I’m talking about a symbol, an emblem, a well-known design, like a symbol associated with a religion, or the logo of an organization, or even the symbolic and automatic way you draw a tree–as if every tree had one trunk and a plane of solid green?

That symbol has a way of dominating the drawing and dulling the impulse to think imaginatively.

Whew. I know I’m setting myself to get a lot of flack for saying so. And if you look closely in the Genesis Cards you’ll find the heart symbol in the Attraction Card. So I’m noticing that I too have taken comfort from drawing symbols.

But you’ll also notice that the heart in the Attraction Card becomes a cushiony seat that props the woman up.

If you’ve got to use symbols–and let’s face it, we all have the temptation to do so–try to break through the symbol and reimagine it . For instance, if you’re used to drawing oak trees you can make them pink and give them lots of trunks.

By  taking steps to break through barriers of what a symbol means to you, it unleashes creativity from the heights and depths of your being.

Go on. Give it a try!

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