This week’s Life Book lesson was a bonus lesson taken by Jenny Wentworth. The idea was to paint a tree intuitively using layers of watercolour paint, the tree growing from a seed that represented hopes and aspirations, and Wentworth added a female face into her tree trunk so that it became a personification.
I experienced a real creative block with the lesson. I just could not find a way to get started. I even considered skipping the lesson entirely but I am too anal retentive and it didn’t sit right with me to not complete every single lesson in the course. I told myself I would postpone it until I came up with an idea that worked for me. Then my kids – so often a source of inspiration to me – came to my rescue. I asked about their day at school and they asked me what art I had been doing. I explained that I was creatively stuck. They wanted to know what the lesson was about and I explained what Wentworth’s painting looked like as a potential outcome. “So like a lady Groot?” my 8 year old asked. Ping. Light bulb. That was my inspiration: I could anthropomorphise a tree!
I used watercolour and created the small branches and twigs by blowing the paint with a straw. I may not have painted intuitively or used lots of layers of watercolour but that was my nod to being less controlling with the outcome. I did not want to lose the shapes the branches had created plus the leaves are rapidly falling off the trees so I decided to make her an Autumn tree. My 10 year old said she looks like a Dryad. Whether Marvel comics or Greek mythology, the lesson got done and it only took me the time in which dinner was cooking.