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I am a Colorado native, so I grew up loving the natural environment and the wild Rocky Mountains. Until recently, I always considered myself a watercolor artist and felt confined to that little “box” I put myself in. On a quest for discovery and healing, I took a workshop in mixed media techniques. Since that day, I’ve been obsessed – I’ve found a new and different way to express myself and my emotions. I’m on a constant quest to find unusual and discarded “things” to use in my paintings. I’ve used everything from plaster, twine, metal, foil, and even broken windshield glass. It all somehow becomes symbolic in my paintings and signifies a feeling or emotion. Thanks for joining me on this journey and this adventure we call life and art!

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

"Transformation", Original Mixed Media Painting by Colorado Artist, Donna L. Martin


Lately, there have been alot of changes and "transformations" in my life.  This latest painting symbolizes the changes and the beauty that can eventually come from the "mess" of life.

I started this painting, probably a good 3 years ago.  I threw paint on the canvas very randomly and then got "stuck".  I didn't know where to go with the brush strokes or what to do next.  This is how I felt also in my life.  I had a "day job" that I absolutely hated, but I felt so stuck.  The money was wonderful, but the trade off was that I felt like I was losing my soul.  The job dealt with negative, angry people and terrible situations every minute of every day.  It took a toll and I did not feel like myself anymore.  I became very dark, cynical, and did not trust anything anyone would tell me.  I think this carried over into some of my artwork life as well.  When someone would give me a compliment on a painting, I would outwardly thank them, but inwardly dismiss it.  The voices in my head would tell me people were "just saying that, they didn't really mean it".  The voices said "how can you even call yourself an artist anyway".  I was in a very dark place and I knew I needed to make some changes, but like I said, I felt stuck.

Well, we all know life is a series of constant changes.  Another opportunity came up at the place where I work during the day.  Prior to working in this negative job that I felt so stuck in, my attitude would have been "let's see how we can make this new opportunity work".  I was always pretty hopeful and optimistic about every opportunity that presented itself.  I also always felt like a risk taker. But because of my negativity and inner darkness, when this new job opportunity presented itself, I said to myself "that will never work...it's temporary and the salary is nothing like you are making now...you CAN'T do it".  

Life also has a way of sending people to you that will give you the right messages and the right answers at just the right time.  At least two people came to me, people who I didn't even know very well, and asked if I was going to apply for this new job.  When the second person came and asked me about applying for the job, I told him that I could not apply for the job, it just wasn't possible.  He looked me straight in the eye and said "why not?"  He then listed multiple reasons that this new opportunity could work.  I hadn't answered questions with "why not" for so long, I forgot there were possibilities.  I had forgotten to listen to those still, small voices.  For some stupid reason, that was all it took for the lightbulb to go off in my head and for me to stop saying "NO" to something that was so desperately needed.  I got the new job.  My life and this painting began to transform.  

I've been working in my new day job for about a month now.  Funny thing is, I've been painting up a storm.  I feel like the light is coming back into my soul. I feel like there are "possibilities" again.  I've stopped saying "NO" and have become my old gypsy soul.  So, this painting titled "Transformation" was born.

I think all of us become lost at times or stuck.  The trick is to keep on plowing through the mess and realize there is beauty at the end of the storm.

This painting is fresh off the easel.  Feel free to send me a message with comments or questions, or if you are interested in purchasing.

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