Artistic Afternoons: Draw something or someone as you attend to them. If this is a young child or animal or insect, the constant motion may mean you can’t get one good still shot of them, so what would it look like to capture their motion on the page? For something more stationary, some bit of nature or your home, let yourself trace its edges with your eyes and your pen(cil). Notice where the shadows fall, where the contours curve (or don’t!), what different textures you discover on the surface. You do not need to come up with a perfect representation of this person or object for it to be a worthwhile practice. In the time you spend drawing them, you see them just a little more deeply than you normally might. You attend to the language of the body, the beauty of the color, the inherent goodness—even if you also see imperfections as you attend more closely to something/someone. This kind of attending is similar to contemplation, to allowing your gaze to soften and receive what is in front of you (and how God is with-you in it) as gift. What does it feel like to you to pray in this way, with your attentiveness giving “a long, loving look at the Real” (as theologian Walter Burghardt has described it)?

Posted by Jamie Bonilla at 2023-06-19 21:07:42 UTC