Recently, I facilitated an arts and wellness workshop titled Water as Metaphor: Intuitive Watercolor Workshop at the Atlantic Center for the Arts, Harris House in New Smyrna Beach, Florida.
This dynamic intuitive watercolor painting was created by a participant using a mix of tube and liquid concentrated watercolors.
Painting by J. Hannick
In expressive arts and art therapy, working intuitively can lead to the discovery of symbols and metaphors in your artwork that can help tell your story. The metaphors can work as guides.
Our workshop began with a discussion on water as a metaphor in literature, psychology and art. For example, she was as angry as a raging storm or calm as the glassy sea. Thinking metaphorically leads to many creative discoveries.
We also did a deep breathing creative visualization on the water element.
Not every work will have spontaneous imagery arise that we can use for metaphor and that is fine. Just knowing how to use metaphor for self discovery through the arts can help us understand our journey and gain insight.
The painting below was created by simply using my finger and tube watercolor and creating an arc shape with my finger.
Then I sprayed water on it and brushed it out a little with a paintbrush and a finger. An ocean wave seemed to be evolving, so I followed the paintings lead and evolved the wave.
Many people find watercolors frustrating because the lack of ability in controlling it. By working intuitively and letting the watercolor flow wet on wet, dry on wet, and other experimental techniques, students can let go of the need to control the paint and follow the flow of paint to the point of creative discovery.
Collage of students’ work photo by Sooz White
We ended the workshop with a mindfulness writing reflection in response to the artwork.
Next Intuitive painting workshop is July 9th.
Details for next workshops click here
And click here to view Laura’s paintings lauraknapikbohn.com