Abstract Love

Abstract Love – 30×48 on Gallery Canvas

Abstract Love.

Instead of trying to explain the muse that drew me to recently create this huge abstract piece  – the largest, most “abstract” painting I’ve done to date – 4 foot wide (48 inches) x 30 inches tall – I will share this quote from one of my absolute all time favorite books….

A book I have read and listened to the author read several times – Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert:

Let me list for you some of the many ways in which you might be afraid to live a more creative life: You’re afraid you have no talent. You’re afraid you’ll be rejected or criticized or ridiculed or misunderstood or—worst of all—ignored. You’re afraid there’s no market for your creativity, and therefore no point in pursuing it. You’re afraid somebody else already did it better. You’re afraid everybody else already did it better. You’re afraid somebody will steal your ideas, so it’s safer to keep them hidden forever in the dark. You’re afraid you won’t be taken seriously. You’re afraid your work isn’t politically, emotionally, or artistically important enough to change anyone’s life. You’re afraid your dreams are embarrassing. You’re afraid that someday you’ll look back on your creative endeavors as having been a giant waste of time, effort, and money. You’re afraid you don’t have the right kind of discipline. You’re afraid you don’t have the right kind of work space, or financial freedom, or empty hours in which to focus on invention or exploration. You’re afraid you don’t have the right kind of training or degree. You’re afraid you’re too fat. (I don’t know what this has to do with creativity, exactly, but experience has taught me that most of us are afraid we’re too fat, so let’s just put that on the anxiety list, for good measure.) You’re afraid of being exposed as a hack, or a fool, or a dilettante, or a narcissist. You’re afraid of upsetting your family with what you may reveal. You’re afraid of what your peers and coworkers will say if you express your personal truth aloud. You’re afraid of unleashing your innermost demons, and you really don’t want to encounter your innermost demons. You’re afraid your best work is behind you. You’re afraid you never had any best work to begin with. You’re afraid you neglected your creativity for so long that now you can never get it back. You’re afraid you’re too old to start. You’re afraid you’re too young to start. You’re afraid because something went well in your life once, so obviously nothing can ever go well again. You’re afraid because nothing has ever gone well in your life, so why bother trying? You’re afraid of being a one-hit wonder. You’re afraid of being a no-hit wonder

― Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic

The first stroke on a huge canvas can be so scary, yet so exciting and liberating at the same time.

The brushes and pallet knives and paints are art themselves!

The finished piece…

which is – for now – hanging above our bed.

Its temporary home?   Or its forever home?  Either way is fine, because I kinda love it!

If it speaks to you, it is available here.

Cheers & Hugs,


52 thoughts on “Abstract Love

  1. Jodi, I’m NOT AFRAID, to let you know that this is am impressive piece of creative work that you did and I truly believe that it has a wonderful and rightful place mounted above your bed to constantly remind you that you are a outstanding artist and I always so amazed with the diversity in the types of creations you continually bring to life. Keep going girl !! You have such an God-gifted talent and I truly believe this is what you were meant to do !! Luv Gary

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  2. That is quite an impressive list of fears, which we all have when starting something big, a creative project, like painting or writing a book. I am so glad you conquered fear with that huge abstract painting, Jodi. You literally put your heart into it.

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  3. Wow! I totally love this!! I love Elizabeth Gilbert’s words and your painting is Awesome! What an inspiration you are Jodi, at how you just go for it and let the magic happen! Keep going for it my friend, who knows what lies around the corner! 🙂 ❤

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  4. First, may I just say that I am going to be subjected to Benjamin’s displeasure tomorrow when he realizes that I opened his letter! Secondly, Jodi, to me this painting really expresses the multifaceted aspects of love. We tend to choose to only think about the happy sides, and prefer to forget that there are those darker moments in any love story that must be met and overcome for the happy to flourish and triumph. I’m probably reading too much into your brushstrokes, but it does seem to me that abstract painting releases the painters innermost thoughts. This quote seems to describe that best : “The canvas upon which the artist paints is the spectator’s mind.” – Okakura Kakuzo. It is nonetheless beautiful, no matter how you look at it. Third, Elizabeth Gilbert has authored fiction and nonfiction that are among my favorites…although most books fit in that category for me. The first book of hers that I read was “Pilgrims” in the late 90’s. “Eat Pray Love” was a wonderful memoir by her. “The Signature of All Things” from about 5 years ago is a novel that I loved. This last book in 2015, “Big Magic”, is a must read. Somewhere along there she published her Grandmother’s cookbook too, I gave it to my youngest daughter quite some time ago. Consider these recommended reading from an avid reader, although you most likely have read them. Thank-you for sharing your talent in this fantabulous post!

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    • Seems I have some more Elizabeth Gilbert books to read. Definitely read Eat Pray Love, but I must find Pilgrims and the others. I am expecially intrigued about the cookbook. I follow her on Instagram, as well, and am so empowered and motivated by her.

      I ADORE your interpretation of this work Ellen! I am so honored and grateful for your thoughtful comments. I hope I get to hug you in person for real some day!

      Hugs and love X2! 🙂 ❤


      • You are so very sweet! I was returning to add a P.S. to my comment and read your lovely comment. After speaking with my daughter about the cookbook, because I could not remember the title, she looked at it to give me the specifics. This cookbook titled “At Home on the Range” was actually published by her Great-Grandmother, Margaret Yardley Potter, in 1947. After Elizabeth Gilbert found it in a box she decided to republish it in April 2012. Daughter also said that you should see the Eat Pray Love movie with Julia Roberts, she loved it. Another P.S. or P.P.S. Your original painting is exactly where it should be! Thank-you, again!

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      • You are surely the sweetest. ☺️❤️I did see the movie. And very much enjoyed it! Time to look up that book. And I do love the painting where it is. If somebody wants it though I wouldn’t mind and would get to create another. Lol. 🤪. Xxoo


  5. Love this! I can imagine the freedom and fabulous fun you probably felt as you painted! I loved reading Big Magic….I don’t usually read a book more than once, but I think I will read this one again. Its that good (your quote reminded me. so thank you!)

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  6. WOWZA!! That is a BIG painting!! Isn’t it fun to just let go and paint?! I see so much in your abstract. I am reminded of water… a reflection of past and present perhaps? I see your heART in it too! ❤️ Love it! 😍xo

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  7. Today is both a Gemday and a Gem Sleepover Day!! I told Benjamin that I had opened his mail yesterday and his : “That’s okay, I know it’s so hard to wait!” lessened my guilt considerably. He also suggested that “We could share My Jodi’s letters”. His will be “all the paintings and photo ones”, “Charlie the Dog” and “fun ones” (?). Mine are the “just talking ones” and “cooking ones”, except “the ones with cookies”. Well that certainly simplifies matters, doesn’t it?! He wanted me to enlarge your painting and when I did (I had not done so yesterday!) he got his face right up to the screen and peered intently up &down, then left to right. After sitting back down, he propped his chin in both hands and continued to stare at the screen without a word being spoken. Without a glance in my direction, he spoke to the painting : “This is love in a messy rainbow of colors!” I asked him why he said that and he pointed at the heart and said : “Gem, look at the heart” and pointing to the word said : “and that says it!” I suppose that abstract art can be quite easily understood after all! Total aside, but we have been working on our Valentine’s project and needless to say “I love you” has been the focal point and the heart has been his favorite shape since forever! Benjamin sends a “Namaste” and a neckbuster hug too! Thank-you x 2!! P.S. Benjamin wants to be sure you are having a Happy Winnie the Pooh Day! And, “don’t forget to eat Honey Cakes and watch the Pooh movie”!

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  8. I see a city scape and lake reflections in this amazing piece of work, Jodi … how fabulous you have it where you can see it many times a day. Fear is there to push us along … and help us to be our best selves … and you sure did that with your art here! Anita 🙂

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  9. I’m so behind on my emails…. This is great. The colors are perfect for your room & look great with the patterns on your bed & the bed. Thats exciting. Huge ! The book is great reference & reminds me of abstract thinking, which is exactly what our brain does to us. Beautiful. Looks messy, the painting medium, not your painting.

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      • Yes I have, studying color still, learning to draw. But got behind on mail because of busy with Christmas, and I’ve subscribed to various sites for learning, any way trying to catch up. Love that you are still working with the acryllics. I’ve seen some beautiful abstract painting in acryllic using some of the metallics. I’d like to try abstract in watercolor, but trying to keep focused. Somehow when we moved up here to nowhere land, I got involved in too many “things”, I blame it on my ipad, never had one before, my grandkids got me into pinterest & I discovered a ton of fun things to try. Like Alcohol ink, took a local class, then brusho, then signed up for watercolor class at local college, ha ha 1 hour away driving on switchback roads, & then found out it snows here more often than I expected & we have black ice on some very steep roads, I really liked live classes, but doing it on line & books. Then I found a used cuttlebug at a Hospice store, & that started another element that I had no knowledge even existed. I have been making cards forever, old fashioned embossing, but nothing like this. I had a ton of punches but not too many stamps & never knew about distress inks etc. Now I have several stamps, like a hundred plus, because they make them in plastic & rubber & you can store them & they come 5 or 10 on a card. So thats what I’ve been doing. Trying to learn a lifetime in a few years. Haha. My past life hobbys I think I told you were sewing, cooking, stainglass. Using crayola watercolors for testing pattern colors for stainglass. I dont have the workspace I once did, so I’m into things that arent messy & dont need to a messy smelly “finish” on it. Draw back on alcohol inks & tiles. Sorry, you are probably wishing you hadn’t asked. Love & hugs. Hope to someday get to meet you.

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      • WOWZEE! You are a busy, creative lady, and i LOVE IT! I love doing all these things too! It is so hard to focus sometimes – huh? But you are cherishing every creative moment – and I am inspired! Bravo to you! I sure wish you would share you work! Happy Creating friend!!!

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