Tammy Bailey and the joy of painting.
If you could give your past self some advice, what would you tell yourself?
Ironically enough, it was my past self that gave some very important advice to my current self and triggered a catharsis that changed the direction of my life.
I found a stored box of journaling and poems I had written when I was a young girl of 12 or 13. I had no memory of keeping them or why I did. A divinely planned intervention?
They opened my eyes and my heart. I remember saying to my husband “how could I know so much when I was a child and know so little at 41? Those written words reminded me that painful events that had not been processed in my past remained embedded in me and I was re-enacting them in my family.
The terror and realization that I was an alcoholic was my bottom and the beginning.
Today I would say to my past self-trust your inner strength and intuition. Do not be ashamed to ask for help. I spent too many years worrying about what other people thought of me.
Follow your joy and happiness and understand everything happens for a reason. We just need to be present and open to hear the message.
When you first started painting, how did you know you were ready and what made you start?
Serendipitously, I started painting at a local paint night. These paint nights initially were social, fun, and encouraging, thanks to a fellow Artist Ellen Bradley Cheung.
And from that point forward, I have never looked back.
The creative process of painting is my muse and continues to inspire me to improve my skills. There is something deeply gratifying and joyful in the act of painting. It is the reflective, meditative time that allows me to express myself in a visual cathartic way.
Having started with acrylic, I now also paint in mixed media and watercolour.
What is your number one artistic goal to accomplish this year?
My number one artist goal is to continue enjoying the process. When you are doing something that you truly love, it guides you.
In saying this, anyone who knows me knows that I am a task and goal-oriented individual who works very hard at what I love.
My art has taken me on this serendipitous journey which continually surprises me.
Who or what has been the greatest influence in your artistic career?
The greatest influence in my life is the deep soulful joy I experience when painting. It’s that simple.
However, I do not want to diminish or undervalue the gratitude I have for all the women who have mentored me in life. Whether in art, friendship, spiritually, emotionally, or through other activities. This is one of the reasons I jumped at the opportunity to collaborate with the book Pursuit 365. We all have a story and by sharing we empower and encourage other women. And as I have learned, it is difficult to grow in a vacuum.
What do you have going on that you would like to share?
I am grateful that during this pandemic I have been able to continue to paint in my home studio in Surrey, BC, be one of the many talented artists with Roam Galley (who will be featured in October), and an active member of the South Surrey White Rock Art Society and Semiahmoo Arts.
Most important that my husband, children, and grandchildren see me as the person I am today. I can pass forward healing, love, growth, and the joy of painting.