Spirituality comes in many forms and to me there’s not much more spiritual than the belief system of Native Americans. The reverence they have for all living things has always been inspiring to me and align with my way of thinking.

Beginning of Spirit Voices painting

Beginning of Spirit Voices painting

When I started painting Spirit Voices, I was laying down warm shades of color. Yellow and red were talking to me and I added washes of both, blending and swirling them together. At this point of a painting I start to hear it whisper to me what it wants me to do next.

Addition of voices symbol for Spirit Voices painting

Addition of voices symbol

I added darker red and then switched my attention to a pop of red violet. I added squiggles and I instantly saw voices as symbols. Spirit Voices came to me then, in fact I wrote it on the back of the canvas right away allowing it to claim the title.

I put the painting aside for a few days to let it simmer in my subconsciousness. When I picked it back up, even a stronger and bolder color took control. I knew then it was heading to a Native American look.

Bold strokes of black added to Spirit Voices painting

Bold strokes of black

I really don’t know a lot about Native American culture so I had to let my imagination channel my great-grandmother who was part Cherokee. Sadly, I never knew her  – she had died before I was born – but I had been told fun and wondrous stories about her as a child. Mom would tell me about her “Granny” at bed time. All my of my life I had her name on the top of my list of names for my child. Imagine my surprise when I had a son.

Oh. I hadn’t planned for a son, funny. Life is that way, isn’t it? I was so sure I would have a daughter. I even dreamed of her. I’ve never told anyone this, but I believe I did conceive a daughter before my son. The year before my son Asher was born I had a miscarriage. She would have been born in September. She was my Canzadus.

As common as miscarriage is, its commonality doesn’t make it easier.

I still mourn my child and I will until death… mine.

Whew… time to get back on subject here. *putting tissue box away*

My great-grandmother Canzadus

My great-grandmother Canzadus sitting at an old sewing machine

Canzadus was my great-grandmothers name. They called her “Lady” though for some reason, I wish I knew. Lady is even on her gravestone.

My grandma, her brother and sisters all looked Indian. I guess though it had all but watered down by the time I came about. In my family, we never practiced anything Native American. I never learned anything about that part of my ancestry and I’m sad to say all that side of my family have all crossed over now and I don’t know where to start to find out more. Isn’t it strange the older you get the more you want to know where you came from? At least for me it’s that way. I have seriously considered doing that dna test to find out where you came from on that ancestry commercial.

Back to the painting.

more work added to Spirit Voices painting

Since I didn’t have any knowledge about Native Americans I used my creative license and let it lead my efforts in finishing the painting.

Strokes of paint became bundles of feathers. Feathers needed leather ties and ties needed beads for decoration. I imagined these feathers being dipped in war paint and used in ceremonies. I could hear rhythmic drums beating in my mind and I could almost smell the smoke floating in air from the powwow happening in my mind.

more work added to Spirit Voices painting

more work added to Spirit Voices painting

Tweaks here and there and swishes of tribal marks sealed the deal. I knew it was finished.

finished painting of Spirit Voices

Spirit Voices finished.

This is how a lot of my paintings come to be. I follow my intuition and go where it leads me. This to me is a form of spirituality.

I am fond of this painting and I know it is patiently waiting for the new owner to hear its beating of drums in their heart to take it home. Do you hear it? Is it you?

If so find it available here.


Learn more about me on the ‘About’ page in the menu at the top. I’m an artist – a painter mostly and an avid gardener. I paint a variety of subjects including birds, koi fish, my gardens, ponds and flowers as well as anything having to do with nature especially trees and tropical scenes. I also enjoy painting abstracts and have started created more and more of them. My most favorite thing to try to achieve in my painting is is mystery.

If you would like to keep up with what I’m doing, I have a newsletter e-mailed about once a month that gives you special status for invitations, birthday greeting and more. I’d love for you to add your email to my Friends and Collectors list!

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