dragonfly, contemporary art, insect, wings, oil painting

There’s a lake nearby our house with a nice walking trail.  I like to observe the wildlife as I make my way around the water.  There are ducks and herons, and some sort of pelicans have shown up recently.  The dragonflies are also in abundance, and I find them fascinating!

Whenever you need inspiration, you can always find it in nature.  As summer rolls along, I’ve found myself thinking about those beautifully colored dragonflies and decided I wanted to try something a little different from my usual subjects.

Did you know that dragonflies spend most of their lives as children?  The larval stage can last as long as 5 years, and once they become mature they only live another five or six months.  So essentially, they spend most of their lives “becoming” the thing they were meant to be.

All of us go through different stages of “becoming”.   Life is, after all, a process.   I believe we need to allow time for the process to work in us.

There have been many areas of my life that have been through this “becoming” stage;  physically going from a child to an adult (painful),  growing up, having a child, becoming “responsible”,  growing spiritually in my faith.   Now, I’m going through a new “becoming” as an artist.  Like any time of growth, it’s been painful.  It began with picking up the brush and being excited about every thing I did.  Then it became frustrating when I couldn’t produce what was in my mind because I lacked the skill.  Then I wanted to quit because the “becoming” wasn’t happening fast enough!!

Now, I’m in this place of discovery, a place I’m actually quite happy to be.  I still haven’t quite “become”, I’m still learning, still experimenting, but I’m finding my voice. Like the dragonfly about to break out of the larval stage, not quite ready to spread my wings and fly.

Like the dragonfly, I think we spent most of our lives “becoming”.  I see the value in this stage and I don’t mind staying here for a while.  “Becoming” can be a beautiful thing when we relax and allow ourselves the time to develop.


6 thoughts on “Becoming

  1. I’d buy this painting based on just the story alone. This is really beautiful Shelby and I like your new look. It’s fun to try something different isn’t it? Will you be doing a bug series? I can see a butterfly in the future!

  2. Just did a contemplative worship at the Refuge centered around the 5 senses and your thoughts reflect so much of how Nature lets us see into the heart of God and what he hopes for us also. Love the dragonfly and the beautiful colors. Look forward to seeing new subjects. Love how you “become”.

    • Hi Dawn! It’s good to hear from you! Thank you for the comment, sounds like a wonderful teaching at the Refuge.

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