Thursday, October 17, 2013

Everyone can practice meditation.

October Focus                      9 x 12
Watercolor on paper
Life is stressful.  Not that I have to remind anyone of this.  We all get overwhelmed with our daily tasks, what's going on in the news, finances, kids, etc.  If we let this stress overwhelm us it can effect our sleep, work, tempers and, most of all, our health. Today my sister sent me a very valuable link:

Numbers 6 & 7 are two of my favorite ways to meditate.  I wrote about using a journal and setting an artist date just the other day in my blog post about unlocking your creative spirit. Today I thought I'd share a little meditative painting technique I teach my students.  Gather your supplies, turn off you phone, put on some soft music and get ready to relax.

Meditation Mandalas
9 x 12 watercolor paper                  assorted watercolor paints
assorted brushes                                     water cup

 1.  Trace a large circle on your paper with a pencil.

2.  Wet your paints and your brushes with clear water.

3.  Pick up one brush and dip it in your first color.  Paint a stroke.

4.  Pick up a different brush and dip it in a different color.  Paint a second stroke. Feel free to overlap as you paint .

5.  Repeat this process changing brushes, colors and directions until you've painted 100 strokes inside your circle. That's right, I said 100!

 7.  Now paint a wet-on-wet background using either cool colors (blues, greens and purples) or warm colors (reds, yellows and oranges).  First wet the background with water then drop in colors.

As your painting dries reflect on how you felt as you concentrated on painting and counting those 100 strokes.  Whenever I do this exercise I feel tense and obsessive in the beginning , keenly aware of colors mixing and deciding on new strokes in the middle, then relaxed and meditative towards the end.

Hang your Meditation Mandala near your work area or where ever you spend the majority of your day.  When you encounter tension or stress simply sit back, stare at your picture and count the strokes of color.  Enjoy your meditative moment!


  1. A meditation mandala... what a creative idea to reduce stress and anxiety and to bring a fresh focus with peace and relaxation. I want to do this... but I have no paints or brushes these days! Nevertheless, I'm saving this idea to implement soon :)

  2. That sounds awesome and I will be giving this one a go! Thanks for the idea. Looking forward to this practice. Best Regards, Wendy

  3. Thanks for the suggestions--as a bit of a perfectionist though this particular form of mandala would drive me crazy because it wasn't symmetrical! I don't get to break out the art supplies very often anymore, but I find the same sort of peaceful calm you're describing by colouring in the pre-made mandalas.