I looked out of my office window on Monday and saw what looked like a party going on in my yard, with leaf confetti fast becoming a thick blanket of decoration:
The source of the confetti is all of our trees, lately having to decided to get with the autumn program, change color and drop leaves everywhere.
It’s like God is throwing a party and decorating the earth with brilliant colors to remind us of how beautiful life can be, even as winter looms.
Confetti for my artist’s date
Lately, I’ve felt a bit like the dried-up leaves on the ground, not the pretty reds and golds and bright oranges newly fallen and confetti-like, but instead like the crisped brown ones that crunch when you step on them and hitch a ride into the house on the dog’s feet.
I realized I’ve been ignoring my artist’s date, a term Julia Cameron defines in her book The Artist’s Way as a weekly solo date that she insists is essential for any creative person who wants to make creativity sustainable. So I decided to set out in search of more confetti for my artist’s date. And I knew exactly where to find it.
It has been too long since I visited the art museum nearby, and because this morning was too cold to be outdoors, I headed there to see one of my favorite paintings, The Garden Parasol by Frederick Carl Frieseke:
I’ve always been a fan of impressionist art, and this grand-scale painting of a simple garden party has long been one of my favorites for its explosion of color and the serenity of its story. The note beside the painting describes it as a “sumptuous confection of color.”
I’m spellbound by the confetti-like play of colors and textures that fill this painting:
As I turned to leave, a group of school children arrived at the painting with a docent, who had them stare at the painting while she counted to 10 and then turn away from it and tell her what color the woman’s dress was. They answered correctly, but then she pointed out to them all the colors that went in to the woman’s white dress.
As they continued to talk about the “story” the painting was telling, I walked away, feeling refreshed, as though I’d just been to a garden tea party with dear friends. And the party was filled with confetti, and therefore, with joy.
Find your confetti
As you head into your preparations for Thanksgiving, whatever that might entail (cleaning, cooking, travel, family drama, power shopping), will you take a few moments to find your confetti, whatever that smattering of color is that will refresh you and fill you with joy? I’d love to hear where you find your confetti.