Mandala Monday: More Qualities of the Circle



Continuing to move through Susan Fincher’s The Mandala Workbook with more Circle exercises.  The bleed through on the paper, in this handmade journal found on Etsy, was initially a source of frustration.   But I am incorporating the bleed through into entries on subsequent pages and learning a lot about working with what I’ve got in front of me instead of putting a ton of energy into something that I can’t change.  The following two mandalas are a case in point.  The circles and dots in the teal mandala were created around the structure of the bleed-through from the spider web mandala.  The quote from pg. 42 really spoke to me as I am in a the midst of an extended fast.

“The mighty task is to submit to the unknown within and without and allow yourself to be transformed by the experience… Fasting, going without sleep, and separation from the community were often part of these rituals of transition.”

spider web mandala

when the other page bleeds through

Moving forward.

By | 2016-10-19T14:20:38+00:00 January 17th, 2011|books, Journals|5 Comments

About the Author:

I create containers for words and paint and I fill them. I craft safe, sacred spaces for people to wrestle, create, heal and shout from the mountain tops.
And I teach people to do all of these things for themselves.

  • I think one of the great things about art is the ability to transform, whether that be the blank canvas and raw elements we start with, or the “mistakes” that we make that turn into insights.

    • Luke – you said art has “the ability to transform”. I love that. It’s so true! Often, there is physical transformation as a piece evolves, but I also find that transformation has also happened within me, the artist. {Of course, I always hope that anyone on the receiving end of any given piece experiences a shift too.} Thank you so much for your insight.


  • Internal transformation, you’re right! A few years ago I did a series I called “forces for transformation.” The work I’m doing now is quite different. Perhaps that transformation was underway. I’m not sure if the art was what transformed me, or if I was seeing the transformation occurring in the art (like holding up a mirror). I would imagine with the sort thought you put into your work you must be fairly aware of these sorts of processes.

    • Luke –
      “forces for transformation” wow, would love to see that. Do you have images anywhere? Yes, I do think the idea of the art being like a mirror is accurate. And yes, I do try to stay aware and fully engaged while I’m working. Interestingly enough, the premise of the painting course that I’m taking currently, is to stop thinking and paint intuitively. The art that is coming from this course is very reflective. {meaning that, who I am and where I’m walking, is showing up in the art.}

      Thanks for the conversation!

  • Betsy
    I actually haven’t chatted much about art in a while, so I’m glad I came across your blog. The pieces I did for the series were mostly abstract landscapes done in acrylic with a limited palette. The idea for me was fluid, changing, shifting, fragmented spaces as a reflection of my thoughts on reality,and I was very much operating from an intuitive place, which basically freed me up in a lot of ways. I don’t have them posted anywhere, but I’d be happy to email you a few if you’d like.

    It’s interesting you would be able to see those elements show up in your work. Sounds like a neat way to connect with your art and surroundings. I could see some interesting artistic and internal realizations coming out of that.