How do you get to Carnegie Hall?

Dear Hearts, 

Welcome to 2016! 

Rather than resolutions, this year I'm committing to practice, practice, practice! In December I painted a face a day for 30 days (picture of all of them above), and fulfilling this challenge brought me many gifts: regaining and refining of my skill, pleasure, flow, success with discipline, overcoming shyness of sharing my work, a strong sense of my creative contract with myself, strength in decision making, retrieving and reclaiming lost aspects of my voice, new stamina, rhythm. As an Artmonk, I'm aware that my work as an artist is both mundane and spiritual in nature and that practice and process are as much my craft to hone as making beautiful objects. It's about listening for and recognizing the voice of Spirit -- and being of earthly good. 

Creative process opens to heavenly flow, creative discipline nourishes earthly good. 

As I've stepped more into being true to myself as an artist and mystic, I've naturally stepped more into discipline because I want to retain what I've found, and I want build on it. Painting every day makes me feel alive! Subtle realms are more vivid, my senses are activated, spiritual energy shimmers in friendships and in my marriage. My confidence and my inner voice grows stronger. Through being committed to exploring what it means to be an ArtMonk, I've discovered more of how creativity is practical and essential. How having vision has brings me closer to nature and Spirit and how acting on creative impulse strengthens those bonds. Discipline is essential, inspiration isn't guaranteed. 

And so, this year I commit to the practice of making a painting every day. I played with the idea of specific challenges that focus on specific subjects, and have decided that the practice of practice is rich starting place. I may create smaller, specific challenges as I go along, but that will come further down the line. I'll continue working on larger pieces and bodies of work for future shows, but as of today, 1/1/2016, I vow to make a painting a day -- and -- I vow to be accountable and gentle with myself as I explore this project. Life happens. It may be that there are other plans for me that will lead to a major edit or interruption to what this looks like. 

Daily paintings may or may not make it up on social media, but if you want to follow the project as it's revealed, the hashtags #yearofpaintings and #365artchallenge will help you find them on instagram and facebook! 

and now you! 
What is your practice? Is practice a pleasure or a struggle? How have your practices changed over time? 
I'd love to know! Please, leave a comment below on this post! Lets generate some conversation about what lights us up and sustains that light! 

Thank you for reading! 

With bold and colorful wishes for an incredible year, 

Meghan Yates