I fondly remember watching Bob Ross’ “The Joy of Painting” as a child. I would be mesmerized by his soothing tone and amazed by how blobs and splatters of paints would evolve into his iconic natural landscapes. Every time he would finish I would always think “wow, I want to be there”. Now in the era of shelter in place that is even more pertinent.
A couple of months ago I did one of those wine and paint nights. In 2 hours I sipped on some wine and followed instructions as best as I could to create a mountain landscape. I never considered myself particularly artistic, nor have I ever painted, and the last time I did any type of art project was sometime in elementary. Despite my frustration in a process that felt slow, in the end, I was happy with the outcome (see image above). I’m fully aware one of my mountains looks like a bowl but it felt good to create something.
Now I longingly stare at the painting above my desk as I work from home, sheltering in place, and patiently planning my next outdoor adventures to explore all of the beautiful open spaces the Bay Area has to offer.
I have been inspired to try my hand at painting once more. Unfortunately, my last trip to Target wasn’t very fruitful. The art section really left a lot to be desired—there were few paint colors and no canvasses. While I was disappointed, it did bring me great joy knowing that a lot of other people are using this time to be creative and make something beautiful.
There is something poetic about a blank canvas—the opportunities are endless and I think that when we come out of this on the other side many will remember the world pre and post-COVID-19. Art not only allows us to create something that inspires us and makes us happy, but it’s also something that’s played a pivotal role in our socio-political landscape. I hope this time allows us all the opportunity to think about and paint what we want our futures to look like.
I am inspired by how our earth has recovered ever so slightly and how nature is also having her time to breathe. But this break is only momentary if we go back to the status quo after this. So together let’s look for ways to forge connections with others who we can co-create a better climate-smart tomorrow!