November 25, 2015 13:52
Thanksgiving is about being thankful and appreciating all we have. Regardless of what the commercials and Black Friday try to thrust upon us, this day and this weekend is truly a time for family and reflection. As I sit here before my train ride home to my family I started to think about what I am personally thankful for. My friends, my mom and brother, my boyfriend, my job, and my apartment made the list. Yet, when I started thinking about what others are thankful for this holiday I found myself comparing myself and the things I hold in such high esteem to others.
I am thankful for the people and things that make me personally happy, but perhaps I should be focusing on something else this holiday? We reached out to the artists of ArtLifting this week and asked them what they were thankful for and it really put it in perspective for me. The things they were thankful for were often in the service of others. They were most thankful for the things and abilities in their lives that allow them to bring joy to others. Even under circumstances more dire than I have ever experienced these artists continue to focus on only the positive. They continue to think of others before themselves and they are thankful for all the ways they can help others rather than how others can help them.
Artist Kitty Zen of Boston, always the eloquent speaker, reminds us that this holiday season we can be thankful simply for the time in which he live and all the freedoms that this time grants us as human beings such as the opportunity to be ourselves and connect with others. She explains “I am thankful for so many things…. To be alive in a day and age that is becoming awake to the identities and shared humanity of others.” Kitty went on to explain that what she is most thankful for is her ability to share her artistic talents with others and how that can help others. “I am thankful that i have the means and the chance to both make and share my artwork with others, this is truly a point of gratitude for me that is difficult to accurately describe.”
Similar to Kitty, Boston artist Allen Chamberland mentioned a small list of important things he is thankful for this holiday. Among them were only “family and friends, and the chance to make people happy with my work.” Fellow Boston ArtLifting artist Cynthia Perdigao elaborated explaining that art is not just about making yourself happy, but sharing your love with the world and spreading beauty."Creativity transcends words and language and we can view art while feeling the love it was created from." Art helps Cynthia and us all be more thankful and be thankful for one another as well. "Photography and art create a oneness among viewers where we can be grateful for each other and for our process.”
Many of our artists seem to agree with Cynthia that art is one of the things they are most thankful for, both for the joy it brings them in their own lives, but also the joy it helps them spread, and the good it does in the world. Cynthia beautifully explains "Art, even when we are full of sorrow, helps us see love. Art makes sorrow beautiful, and in that we stand together in our divinity."
What some other artists are thankful for this holiday:
“The ability to do art, it's really what has made a difference in my life. What arts done has finally given me peace of mind for the first time in my life. I’ve finally found something I'm good at. I am grateful for artlifting, being part of this company has helped me get me get my art in doors that I could never get myself in. Art has made a major difference in my life, I may even be approaching an emotion called happiness, which I am experiencing for the first time in my life through making art.”
“I am thankful for the new art studio space at Thresholds and the people I have to share it with”
"I am grateful for my sight. When someone is homeless being able to see is everything, it is what keeps me safe, but I am also grateful for my ability to see what is beyond the surface as well. For my ability to see beauty in darkness."
“I am just grateful for life right now and for the opportunity to sell my art on ArtLifting.”
"I would have to say I'm grateful for my friends and family and the little things in life; I don't take them for granted anymore. I'm also grateful to have control of my life again: when you go through losing everything, you also lose control. You eat what's available, sleep, bathroom, where you go and what you do are all controlled by the circumstances. Sometimes the simplest things mean the most and you don't realize it until they aren't there anymore."
"It's a toss up what I am most thankful for, between my faith and my sense of humor.....both are the only reason I've managed to overcome all that I have, and life keeps throwing curve balls... God has an amazing sense of humor and it's where I get mine from."
“Even though life has been hard for me recently, I’m thankful for the fact that I got hooked up with Outside the Lines Studio and that I became friends with the art teacher, Diana Rice, without whose training I wouldn’t be able to draw a straight line.”
Where ever you are
In this vast universe
I extend my thanks
Knowing you are the source
Of this bountiful moment
This mother of mine
Till the end of time
Apart of my game
Insuring a happiness
While avoiding the pain
We are a team
Both you and I
Never give up
Or roll over and die
This note is for you
This mother of mine
My dreams coming true