The Art of Healthy Living

My husband read me a quote yesterday, Living a fine life is an art form.  Robert Mondavi

I want to expound that point, Living a fine, healthy life is a rare art form. Kim Wells

I am an instructor and assistant at a public painting venue, Painting With a Twist, thanks to my new location in Memphis and my haphazard but miraculous job search. I have been there almost a month now and I have relearned a thing or two about human nature, and remembered some important truths about art. And yes, I'm going to share those with you today - that's how I roll. So always be careful how you act around me and what you say to me because you very well could end up the subject of my next blog  - just sayin.

Human nature is so strange in that we are all so very different but we all share some common traits. I see this in the painting classes, everyone is different but there are primarily two approaches to painting that represent the ends of the spectrum and then there is the majority (average) that falls somewhere in the middle of the extremes. In every class there are those who love every thing they paint, every line, every color, every shape.  It can be great or it can be not so great by art critics standards but they love, love, love it.  I am guessing they love, love, love themselves. 

Then on the other end of the color spectrum are those that hate, hate, hate everything they paint.  As if just the fact that it came from their hand, makes it dreadful. I have studied my share of art history and I can tell them that Gauguin painted in a rough, bold style and he is famous, but they won't hear it. I don't mention that his work is very childlike but its the innocence that compels us especially when the subject is not so innocent.  Point being, everyone has a style, it is inherent to them and they can fight against it, or embrace it and go with it.  I wish people understood that.

Paul Gaugin - Blue Trees
Since I usually can't convince people they have a style and it is just great they are present and applying that style, I just have to do my best to encourage them and hope they don't cut off their ear. 
But I also try to give some small suggestion to help them like their painting better.  One of the tricks of the trade so to speak. 
Studying art we learn it is often the smallest of details that change the look of a work in progress. Is that vase sitting on a table or is it floating on a blue cloud? Adding the slightest shadow under it transforms it. It is now clear, it is a vase, sitting on a table. Does that tree look strangely stiff?  Add a little width to the branch where it connects to the trunk and suddenly, it looks rightly attached, instead of a stick arm on a snow man. 
So I thought about these realities in terms of healthy living this week. If my healthy life is a an art form and I truly believe it is, how do I view my handiwork? Do I blindly love, love, love every thing I do? Do I hate, hate, hate every action I take?  Acceptance, kindness, patience, self discipline - these are the fruits of the spirit that really matter in a life of health, these and many more positives.  I need to love, love, love myself and anything I put on the canvas of my life.  If I make a mistake, don't throw the painting in the garbage, fix it, move on. That's the joy of paint, it is forgiving, a little fresh paint can fix anything!
Then the details.  I need to be diligent and disciplined.  I need to keep learning my craft.  Just like that one line can make or break the painting, that one habit can make or break my success.  Learn the tricks of the trade, practice those, learn from others, approach the canvas with abandon but continue to paint with discipline.  Above all Kim - create.  Create the you - you really want to be.  It is in your hands to be all you want to be.  You have the tools, you have the training, be kind to yourself as you embrace the artist and disciplined as you create the art form. That is the art of a healthy life.
That's all ~ thanks y'all!


  1. We should all be creating our masterpiece. It will be priceless once complete. No one can give it to us or take it from us.

    1. Absolutely! And we don't have to please any art critics - just us!

  2. Fascinating! Yes, we do all have our style and need to embrace it. That works for health habits AND creativity. Love Gauguin. :-)

  3. What a great comparison! And it was fascinating to hear your perspective. (And you cracked me with "I just have to do my best to encourage them and hope they don't cut off their ear.")


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