What Does Contentment Mean For You?

Contentment

I’ve been contemplating the idea of ‘contentment’ a lot these days as I’m putting together my online class called The Art Of Contentment.

As Joshua Becker writes in his book The More Of Less, learning to feel content is a lifelong process and it doesn’t come naturally but it’s well worth trying.

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I am content; that is a blessing greater than riches; and he to whom that is given need ask no more.
— Henry Fielding
The Butterfly Effect - acrylic on paper

The Butterfly Effect - acrylic on paper

Definition of Contentment:

According to the Urban Dictionary ‘contentment’ means:

Resting in who you are, who you have, and what you have.

To have contentment is to be comfortable with the world.




Thinking of the definition of contentment above, isn’t that what we all want? To feel comfortable with the world? I say yes!

One of the ways I get to feel ‘comfortable with the world’ is to paint, as well as having a foundation built upon my faith and gratitude. From a creative point of view, I particularly like painting portraits because I find various stresses and strains of my life seem to ebb away and I’m left in this delicious place of creativity, self expression and well, contentment; unless the painting is going badly wrong. ;)

There are so many ways to create a portrait and depending upon my mood I may create a soulful portrait, an expressive portrait or a portrait with a lot of attention to detail. It varies… For when I’m feeling super overwhelmed, you can’t beat some dark and smoky charcoal to melt away your worries.

Classic Beauty - acrylic on paper

Classic Beauty - acrylic on paper

If I feel less muddled, I might want to get a little more detailed and pencil works well with this.

If I’m feeling upset (or happy), collage works. There’s something so freeing about the gathering of juicy supplies, some journal writing and a lot of items to adhere to my substrate that clear my head, heart and mind (see below).

Gently - mixed media collage

Gently - mixed media collage

Mark making (see the background of the painting below) also helps with feelings of stress and overwhelm. There’s something about making small identical marks and many of them, that feels very cathartic and relaxing; meditative in fact.

Beauty and Fortitude - acrylic on paper

Beauty and Fortitude - acrylic on paper

So, I hope I’ve given you some ways to bring a little contentment into your life. Painting really does help your soul to breathe in the midst of chaos. There’s something about painting that enables your conscious brain to ‘wait in the wings’ leaving your subconscious permission to flow and then in that timeframe a shift occurs. Try it and let me know in the comments below how you got on and your thoughts on finding contentment in a busy world.

Take care and here’s to ‘contentment’ and The Art Of Contentment.

Jane x


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PS. if you are interested in my new class, the early bird offer of £95 will only last until 5th December 2018 and then the price will increase to £150. Class available throughout 2019 and beyond. All videos will be downloadable.

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Art Journaling Idea - Step By Step Guide

Today I have an art journaling idea that you just might like to have a go at yourself…

What’s brilliant about art journaling is that it’s so flexible - anything goes as Amy from the Mindful Art Studio shows in her post How To Start An Art Journal.

Please use the supplies you have to hand, a sketchbook is great but equally a piece of paper with some gesso brushed over is fine also. You don’t need a firm idea in your head what the piece has to look like either…

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Until you value yourself, you won’t value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it.
— M. Scott Peck

Supplies I used:

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Sketchbook

Pen for writing out my uncensored thoughts

Grey Gesso

Pencil HB

Golden Fluid Acrylic Paint - greens, brown, yellow, red, white

Winsor & Newton Tear off palette

Black Stabilo pencil (for mark making)

Peel and Sketch charcoal pencil

Collage papers

Brushes/water/paper towel

Adhesive/glue - I use Liquitex matt medium but equally, craft glue would be fine for your sketchbook


Ready for some art journaling? Here we go:

  1. Write out all your stresses, worries and generally anything that’s taking up head space right now - just get it all down and if you run out of space, simply write over what’s already there. Scribbling and scrawly hand-writing with spelling mistakes are all totally fine and - please put perfection to one side!

  2. Next, slap on some gesso - it’s like an undercoat for your work - preparing you for the next stage of painting over with delicious colour. You can use white, grey (this is what I used) or black gesso or, why not mix some acrylic paint into whatever colour you have.

  3. Give a blast with a hairdryer - move it around the piece so it dries evenly.

  4. Grab yourself a photo, magazine image or whatever inspires/touches you - it doesn’t have to be a portrait.

  5. Find some collage items - paper, stamps, fabric, old envelopes, wrapping paper - whatever you like and whatever you have to hand. Place and position them and then adhere them to your substrate with craft glue, glue sticks or matt medium.

  6. Lightly sketch out your main element - mine is obviously a portrait but you could feature a pretty flower, an animal, pattern, or an object that you love etc. Take your time…

  7. Dilute some acrylic paint and start adding darker values signifying shadows.

  8. Add white or lighter values for areas of highlight.

  9. I added a red scarf and decided I didn’t like the shape I’d constructed and so altered it a little.

  10. Start adding some other hues - I added various greens, red and hints of yellow.

  11. Details - I painted in a snazzy earring, a little bird, some foliage and a cute little house. Getting personal with your touches is a beautiful thing - go to town with this.

  12. Mark making - I created some loose marks on the collaged papers which kind of looked like rain and funnily enough I realised when I was finished that it had been raining.

  13. Lastly, I added some more words and this time my words had transformed from being full of angst to feeling playful, relaxed and all with a feeling of gratitude.

Here’s the finished piece. Art journaling is a wonderful way to bare your soul, get messy + then feel so good after…

Here’s the finished piece. Art journaling is a wonderful way to bare your soul, get messy + then feel so good after…

So, I do hope you’ve enjoyed this art journaling inspiration today. My hope is that this will give you a creative and gentle way to vent some of your worries and make ‘all things new’ by painting over with a different message, one of hope and gratitude.

Lastly, remember, I love hearing from you, so please let me know how you get on in the comments below.

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Portrait Painting 2019 - The Art Of Contentment

A Year of Portrait Painting With A Gentle Focus On Slow Living and Contentment (with guests)

I truly believe that painting helps us switch off from the pressures of a busy world and reconnect with ourselves, refocus our priorities and forces us to slow down and I don’t know about you but I need more slow and less busy in my life! I want to feel content in spite of the chaos and unpredictability of my life and I have a feeling that might be the same for you.

Art helps us switch off from the pressures of a busy world and reconnect with ourselves, refocus our priorities and slow down.
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I’m so thrilled to share a brand new offering for 2019 with you!

It’s a combination of portrait painting (which you know I love) and then exploring the idea of contentment in a busy world. So as well as painting, we’re going to look at practical and soulful ways that we can explore to help us slow down via my inspiring and creative guests who are also wildly busy but are also seeking a simpler life that includes slowing down...

How It Will Work:

Each month, I'll share with you a new portraiture lesson (for all levels). We'll be dabbling with various supplies and styles of portrait painting using acrylic, ink, watercolour, pastels, charcoal, collage, gold leaf, perhaps some clay and of course, using some basic supplies such as graphite etc.

Alongside the art, sit back with a cup of tea and look forward to being inspired by other creative women and how they find contentment in a busy world. We’ll be hearing from artists, photographers, designers, writers and coaches - all with busy lives but with useful tips to help you slow down. Remember, no perfection or pressure; just a sense of openness, exploration and curiosity.

Contentment Definition:
The state of mind you reach when you look at your life in all it’s imperfection, and say “all is well”.

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For 2019, take the time to reconnect with who you are and what's important. Give yourself this monthly gift of art and inspiration and watch how your year blossoms as you begin creating soulful portraits, slowing down and discovering an inner contentment.

My guests and I hope to see you in the classroom starting in January 2019…

Early Bird Offer For A Limited Time

Sale Price: £95 British Pounds (will increase to £150)

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Receive my 'Heart Letters' & + enjoy optional extras: Free access to the 'Inspiration Library', 20% off online classes, Free prints, art videos + more...

Online Art Courses - How They Can Help With Stress

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Being busy is the norm for so many of us these days. This in itself isn’t necessarily a problem but when it becomes a way of life and you find yourself unable to relax and de-stress after a full day, things can unravel very quickly - I know, I’ve been there many times. Sometimes, all it takes to break the cycle of perpetual busyness is a little time for ourselves to do something that feels nurturing, relaxing and well, fun!

I know, play seems a potentially shocking word for us adults but I bet the idea of play seems enticing.
— Jane
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Online art courses are a brilliant way to unwind, express yourself and play. I know, play seems a potentially shocking word for us adults but I bet the idea of play seems enticing.

Virtual courses, ecourses, online classes - they all mean the same thing and they can include pre-recorded video (which is what my art courses are primarily made up of). They can also include writing - like a blog post, photos, slideshows, audio and sometimes the facility to leave comments or even start a group discussion (live or not). Sometimes the videos are downloadable (mine often are) so that you can keep them right on your computer too.

My courses are ‘self-paced’ which means that once you purchased the course, you get to create when it’s convenient for you and in my experience, both for myself and my students, that seems to be ideal.

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The other great thing, is that wherever you are in the world, you can purchase and gain access to one of my courses with only a computer and access to a fast broadband connection and you’re good to go.

So how can online art courses help with stress?

Well my students tell me (and I know from personal experience) that there’s something about tapping into our creative side that helps us put to one side the stresses and strains of our busy lives. Creativity can help us connect with our inner lives and reduce stress. I’m a firm believer that we are all creative and that we don’t tend to the creative part of our lives nearly enough. After all, if we take care of our own needs, we are better able to be present with our loved ones - you can’t fill someone else’s well if you feel empty. I also believe that our ‘creative muscle’ gets stronger, the more we engage with it. This article from The American Public Health Association shares clearly how beneficial creativity can be in all our lives.

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Recently I listened to the brilliant SuperMum podcast hosted by Lisa York (Mum of four). Her guest was Dr Pragya Agarwal of The Art Tiffin and they discussed How Can We Support Our Mental Health With Creativity - a must listen!

Finally, I hope this has inspired you to think about pulling those paintbrushes and paints out of the cupboard and perhaps taking one of my online art courses so that you can start tapping into your creative self and park that stress!







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Picasso Online Course - Offer Ending Soon

Piccaso Online Course - offer ending Sunday

I just wanted to give you a quick reminder that my early bird offer of £35 on my Picasso online course will end on Sunday at midnight (GMT - London) - it will then increase to £49!

Would you like to take a closer look and paint in the style of Picasso in his Rose Period?

Join me in this online course as we look at the colours and style he worked with and then paint in ‘his footsteps’. We’ll be creating three beautiful portraits along with a bonus piece and warm up, all with the essence and flavour of Picasso.

There’s always so much to learn in art and I just had to include a bit of the background to Picasso’s Rose Period - I promise, it will make his art come to life when you know and understand the back story.

This course will immerse you into some of Picasso’s paintings like never before…

The classroom will open on Wednesday, 26th September 2018 with full and instant access.

Let’s get started!

Jane x

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Receive my 'Heart Letters' & + enjoy optional extras: Free access to the 'Inspiration Library', 20% off online classes, Free prints, art videos + more...

Giveaway! - A Painterly Jaunt Into Picasso's Rose Period Online Art Class

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Pin the image above if you'd like to take part in my Giveaway!

I'm getting really excited about my upcoming online art class A Painterly Jaunt Into Picasso's Rose Period and wanted to celebrate with you!

I think you're going to love this new painting class!

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To celebrate this new class with you, I'd LOVE to offer one free place in the classroom!

A Painterly Jaunt Into Picasso's Rose Period contains three full lessons, a warm up lesson and a bonus lesson!  The class contains over 5 hours worth of material and contains so much delicious inspiration from this period of the great Picasso.  

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Picasso Rose Period.jpg
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To enter for a place in the classroom, all you need to do is to leave a comment on THIS post.

For additional chances to win:

*Share this new class and giveaway via Facebook by sharing the post

*Pin the class image to Pinterest

*Tweet about the class and tag @jane_hinchliffe #janehInchliffeonlineartclasses

*Blog about the class and giveaway

*Follow me on Instagram

*Instagram about the class and tag @janehinchliffe #janehinchliffeonlineartclasses

(please come back to this post and let me know each time you do one of the above for an additional chance to win).

This giveaway will close on Friday, 7th September 11.59pm GMT (UK time)

I will announce the winner on Saturday, 8th September 2018 via this blog.

Thank you so much for sharing this post, for taking my classes and being so supportive of my work.

Jane xo

 

 

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Receive my 'Heart Letters' & + enjoy optional extras: Free access to the 'Inspiration Library', 20% off online classes, Free prints, art videos + more...