The Beauty in the Details

I believe in art and the stories it can tell. The weekend before Thanksgiving, I stuck a canvas and some paint in the Perspectives Retreat booth that I shared with two good friends at the Women's Expo in Madison, Wisconsin. I wanted to see what art would be created if women each added their own color to the canvas. I started counting my blessings early this Thanksgiving! What an honor and privilege to experience these amazing women making their marks. Some people were tickled to be asked. Some less amused but still played along. Others stayed and chatted. Every single person who added their color became part of this art and this experience. 

Beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, but the beauty of this painting is in the details and the stories they hold. Some are captured below. Countless more are on this canvas and in the hearts of the people who added to the art. Somewhere on the canvas is a grandmother's initials scraped on by a loving granddaughter. Another place has a patch of pink that a different grandmother insisted her daughter paint on for her premature but healthy granddaughter. So many women stood side by side with their mothers or sisters or friends and encouraged each other. So much laughter and joy just at being together. At lifting each other up. A lot of very real and honest conversations took place. A few tears were shed. Women from every walk of life, every race and culture, telling their stories together on this canvas.

The red line is half of a heart. Someone else painted the green heart on top without realizing. A heart on a heart - so much love expressed.

A woman scraped on the pretty purple paint. Her mom took the turquoise paint and ran it along the middle. "That's what moms do!" she said.

Three friends spending the day together painted their initials on the top of the canvas. 

Layers added on layers so that each person's story mixes with another person's to create an entirely new story.

It started as a heart. Someone else saw a rose. The rose changed throughout the day as strangers added to it and created together.