Wednesday, May 19, 2010
A couple of weekends ago I went to Daryl Colburn's studio for a work shop "Embrace Your Essence" - emptying the old to put in the new. I really didn't know what to expect. I knew that it would involve some copper, a torch, hammers, and a journal. I went in wearing a white shirt (which everyone questioned when I got there) and I somehow walked away after hours of torching and pounding the copper with my shirt still white. Now when I look back, I see that and tie it into the weekend in its entirety. I'm sure people do this workshop for a variety of reasons. Perhaps to do some soul searching, to relieve some pent up emotions, to express some creativity, or heck - just to do something they have never done before. I'd say no matter the reason for signing up, you'll walk away feeling fulfilled. To create something with your own two hands is the best thing someone can do for them selves. With the help of Daryl, who has spent years in this environment (creating with a heart and purpose to express) the experience is smooth. Even if what you uncover is rocky, I could imagine a rockier way to uncover it!
Everything was metaphorical. The copper is your essence. The torch is love. The hammer is the world. You start out nice, clean and flat...and after time...love and the world have worked us into these bent up heaps that resemble nothing like what used to be. Some good, some bad. Some we are aware of, and some we are not. Starting out I felt like I knew what I was doing. I was folding it (myself) just the way I wanted so I would look just the way I wanted. After a couple rounds of heating and hammering...I had NO control - I was just trying to get this heap into the smallest form possible with a sledge hammer with out feeling too much reverberation in the aftermath! Still hammering with thought though...thinking about the troubles in life, the things that frustrate me about myself and others, the things that disappoint me and others, the energy I seek to work through those... and my shirt was still white! Day two. Time to undo all that I had worked so hard at. The un-doing proved to be WAY more difficult than the doing. I couldn't do it alone. I had to ask for help. At one point, there were three of us pulling on my heap to open it up. I could not have accomplished what I did with out the help of Daryl and Sherrie. As is in life - there are things we can not accomplish on our own. We may think we have conquered it all, but what's unknown is what you can conquer with a little help from a friendly foe.
The weekend was perfect for me. I needed that practical application of self and action to work through some of the things that tug at me. I can talk all four legs off a horse, but I won't ever get anything done until I actually do something. So - this was a good way for me to sort of step out side of myself and watch what I do to myself. I named the piece INSIDE OUT. Me bringing what is hidden inside, out. There are still some areas that are a little more difficult to be seen...but they are open enough to where they still get a breeze, to be found by some wonderer wandering through the woods on an afternoon stroll when they suddenly stumble upon the unseen. And what I learned: I am stubborn. I take the difficult road even when the easy road is just as accessible but I still take the difficult road to prove a point...as to what that point is...??? And as much as I try to prove I can do everything on my own, I prefer company.
And now for the white shirt tie-in. No matter how damaged you may feel, no matter how far from the stranger you used to be that you long to be again, no matter the challenges ahead - it is still possible to come out bright and shiny. It may take some long hours - some pleasant, some not, and a little help from friends - but it is possible.
I look forward to working with copper again. Stay tuned...