Fish

Friday’s readings come from the prophets. Today was the book of Jonah, so how could the prompt not be fish? Cliche? Maybe. It’s not the first time that word has been assigned to me, so I don’t mind. That story is for another time, though.

This morning I began the process of creating water from blue streamers and ModPodge. I asked one of my children to guess the day’s prompt.

Drowning my hopes and dreams? No. A whirlpool that sucks all my happiness? No.

Clearly my children are on to me, and I laugh at how well they know me. I actually laugh out loud as I am reminded that their job is not to affirm me. Somehow these responses are oddly affirming.

After creating the background I cut fish from a National Geographic magazine found in the stash of magazines gifted me by a friend. I arranged them in the water, reminding myself that I could put them wherever I wanted, and that I was not actually illustrating the story of Jonah.

Blue crepe paper streamers bleed dye all over when they get wet, and the ModPodge was making a mess. Even more of a mess was me choosing to pour small amounts from the container directly onto the page rather than into a small dish or cup to brush on from there.

The final pour was a miscalculation, coating the entire page with a thick glob of white. Blotting and wiping, I eventually had to stop and leave it alone. The area was a mess, my hands were blue, I couldn’t see the images, and a teasing voice across the room was giving me a life lesson.

Five days into the month, and there is much I am learning through this process that has nothing to do with the finished product.

  • It’s not about the word but the process of choosing the word. This touches on the not already knowing piece of my story. I have to trust that each day I will receive just what I need.
  • It’s not about getting it right. I am not receiving a grade or assessment for this. While others may appreciate or enjoy the final product with me, their opinion does not equal or negate success.
  • I can trust my instincts. I can believe that I know what goes where on each page and that whatever I do is the right thing.
  • I can make messes and mistakes and still create something with stunning beauty.
  • Creating beauty takes time.

This is a page that actually looks so much better in person with its glossy effect. I love the final result.

4 thoughts on “Fish

  1. Barbara

    I love how you bravely try new things – whether they work the first time or not, you still go for it! I think the visuals and the writing go hand in hand and I look forward to each and every entry. Keep going! I also loved the fact that you involve your family. Very cool.

    Reply
    1. Julie Post author

      Thank you! What an encouragement as I was doubting myself with all of the writing, yet reminding myself of the purpose. This is me not someone else. It’s so sweet to hear that both are enjoyed.

      Reply

Thanks for heart-composting with me! I appreciate your words.

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