I was perusing Facebook and had an aha moment. And then I lost where I found it. And then I went searching for it again. Always questions. About what I’m doing and why. Questions about what other people are doing and why. And sometimes worlds collide to provide a glimmer of understanding. This was one of those moments. Amanda Grace is an artist who bears her soul in her posts and her artistic journey and by doing this, she helps to give others permission to do so too. Hmmmmm….

I don’t truly know this woman or her work. I’m connected to her through a tribe of creatives. But when I read this post, I know the story she’s writing and sharing is one I need to listen to. Because I am her and she is me. Here’s what she said that grabbed my brain and held it tight.

‘Here’s where I’m supposed to insert carefully crafted sales copy with emotionally charged reason for you to buy something… eh, no not my style. I don’t really know WHY you should buy anything, ever… other than you either need it or simply can’t help yourself.

But here’s the thing, I do know that the women who have bought my paintings so far have something in common. They have reached out to me to claim my work as a declaration to celebrate themselves and/or the women they love, honour, support and share special bonds with.

And that’s good, because without my ever having said so, this is also why I paint them… they are a celebration of me, my essence and spirit and that which I feel the need to bond with. To be ‘there for’ myself in spite of all my doubts and insecurities and struggles, of which there are MANY. To appreciate myself as a woman of value and worth in this world.

And for me this is a big thing, because I’m very good at forgetting who I am and letting the critical voices I carry around beat me down. BAD. These girls come into my studio when I am most in need of reminding that who I am is ME, lovable, sweet, sharp, sarcastic, sincere, sulky… whatever. It’s ok to be me. I don’t have to hide. As corny as it sounds, that’s the truth. I struggle with this shit, ok?

I paint these girls as I work through my life story… I excavate the good, bad and indifferent about me and my life. It’s not always easy, but I have to do it.. tell and tell again, until the story of me is brought up to date as a true and honest reflection of the best of me and not some fabrication from a condition that wants me to believe only the worst.

So.. if that resonates then great, I support you and you support me… we become bonded in our stories because we get that about each other. If that makes no sense to you then, what my girl says here is what you’ll have heard…. blah, blah, blah… ‘

Always, Amanda xoxo


amanda-graces-daisy-jane-the-moon on Shalavee.com

Her words are my words, her story is mine and that feels like a little less lonely. And I understand more now what it is that I may be doing and what I may be gifting. And why people honoring and valuing what I am making and writing is a two way street that we all are digging a stroll down.

Amanda Grace’s about me on her website says this simply,

I believe everyone needs an outlet to express… to exorcise ourselves of our possessions, our demons. To connect with our wisdom. My creative practices are how I do that. I’ve been doing it all my life. My creative practices are how I do that. I’ve been doing it all my life.

Over the past decade, my practice has evolved and deepened… My inner parts have becomes allies by being afforded the freedom of expression.
They are extensions of each other. This process has become my compass, my companion, my confidante and the containers into which I spill my most authentic self.

Find her website , wisdom, and art at  http://www.amandagraceart.com/shop/.

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  1. It’s wonderful to see you and Amanda in one place, an explosion of beauty and intelligence. I’m practicing with hash tags, so I hope I did it right when I shared this post with a bunch of them. hahaha.

  2. Oh Dear! I thought I had commented, obviously not! Thank you Shalagh for your generous and encouraging words. Thank you for seeing and hearing me amidst all this noise <3

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