The values of light and dark play an essential role in art and in life. In art class, we were encouraged to “see the light”. We used white pastels on black construction paper and focused our eye where the light fell on the model.
As we perfected the technique we added color, using black (in this case the black paper) or white to lighten or darken the value of the color.
“”Value refers to the lightness or darkness of a color. It indicates the quantity of light reflected. When referring to pigments, dark values with black added are called “shades” of the given hue name. Light values with white pigment added are called “tints” of the hue name.”” ~Artbox
A Mystic’s Musing
Now, if you will indulge me for a moment, my inner mystic wants to share her perspective on the “value” darkness brings to our human experience. Sadly, I spent too many years fearing the dark, literally and figuratively. But now, when I look back on my life, I recognize the transformative power of the darkness.
In my darkest hours, I have fallen to my knees and had to reach deep within to find my light. Times of suffering and loss can cause us to implode and spiral into a dark abyss, feeling as if we may drown in our sorrow and grief. There have been long stretches of darkness in my life where I wandered aimlessly in search of the light, looking everywhere for the light, only to find that no one, or thing, could save me from the darkness. I had to save myself. It was within the darkness that I found my strength, and realized that I would have to shine my own light to find my way to the other side.
If not for the darkness we would not know the light.
Having survived the darkness and rekindling my light provided an opportunity for reflection. With reflection came clarity, strength, and growth. I no longer fear the darkness. I do not welcome its approach but I recognize the power it has to teach, transform and strengthen me. I know now that I carry my own light within. It is always available to me. And even when my internal light appears a mere flicker, I know that if I bring my focus to the present moment, accepting whatever the moment brings, that flicker will ignite and shine brightly, guiding me out of the darkness.
My inner mystic often reminds me, “look within, be still, focus, be grateful for this life and know that you are loved”. That last part, “know that you are loved” – those are powerful, transformative words – more to come on that topic in a future blog. In the meantime just know that you are loved!
Wishing you all a weekend filled with light and love.
Lest you believe this mystic is all sunshine and rainbows, think again my friend! I have my dark days and dark side too and at the moment I’m annoyed, irritated – VEXED! I feel the coming of a full moon.
As I write this post, April 21, the moon is in Scorpio and the tugging has begun. In a recent article in Collective Emotion, Carmen Di Luccio, describes it this way:
“Whenever we have a Full Moon, whatever sign it is in is felt the most strongly out of both polarities. Scorpio has a very powerful energy which can manifest in both positive and negative ways. At best Scorpio can be deep, transformative, strategic, loving, and generous, with no room for superficiality. At worst Scorpio energy is controlling, manipulative, jealous, obsessive, vengeful, deceitful, and overly suspicious. Death and rebirth are also Scorpio themes.”
I know many are skeptical of the “lunar effect” on humans and science has yet to make the connection but I don’t need science to tell me what I experience with the coming of a full moon – it pulls me into the dark places. The dark energy typically releases in some creative creation. Last month, with the full moon in Libra, the energy was expressed with a poem of sorts. “Write it out, sista!” I told myself, get those words down on the page and release the darkness. And so I did, and here you have it, Written in Blood.
It is often through our art, in whatever form it takes, that we release the darkness and bring it into the light, allowing us to re-center and restore balance in our lives.
As for the power of the moon, it moves oceans, and as Rumi, the great Sufi Mystic said:
“You are not a drop in the ocean. You are an entire ocean in a drop.”