contemporary collage paintings
the process
Leslie Avon Miller

My life flows when I'm in my art.

Jean De Muzio

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Showing My Enthusiasm

Wordless Message, 12 inches x 12 inches on watercolor paper.
Part of the Communication Series.
I enjoyed reading Robert Genn’s Twice Weekly Letter this week. The topic was Irwin Greenberg’s Words to Paint By. I am attracted to advice given in short concise statements, I think because I can remember it better than longer more philosophical discussions. There are 100 quotes with advice about being an artist listed at the end of Robert's post.

My favorite quote from the article was “Let your enthusiasm show.” Yes! I love to paint! I love to create! I love to find out what will happen in the studio! I love the process. I enjoy creating a mindful but chaotic surface and then achieving some kind of interesting resolution. I am deeply satisfied by textures, shapes, marks and colors. I love the meditative state of being in the flow. I feel deeply connected to the process and to what I am saying through my art.

I looked some things up about the concept of enthusiasm today, and found out the word is derived from a Greek word meaning “having a god within.” Enthusiasm is defined in part as “an absorbing possession of the mind.” To me it is about being fully alive, present in my own life and joyful. What a gift it is to love our work so deeply.

One of the best ways to develop enthusiasm is to hang out with enthusiastic people, because it is infectious. That’s another reason I love to blog and connect with like minded people like you.


  1. A great post and lovely piece Leslie! Your enthusiasm has rubbed off on me today. I'm going straight to my studio.

  2. I love the idea of a 'God within'! Thanks for sharing your enthusiasm and your beautiful work!

  3. You're right. The enthusiasm is infectious. I just caught it from this post! Thank you for the virus.

    And thank you for following my blog. I am going to follow yours.

  4. Great post - huge enthusiasm which you just keep spreading about - thank you for an inspiring read and link to Irwin

  5. I usually catch a dose of enthusiasm when I visit your blog. You are so right....blogging feeds one's enthusiasm.
    I love your always!

  6. Thanks for introducing me to a new site and spreading your enthusiasm. I just came from the studio where I had a very adventurous afternoon. I've decided one of the ways to increase your enthusiasm is to switch gears mid stream, to allow yourself time to explore the what ifs...

  7. Your're right- enthousism is infectious - I can see you swinging on the paper - which song was on your mind? xDorie

  8. Leslie, I relate to your description of "creating a mindful but chaotic surface and then achieving some kind of interesting resolution." Isn't that what abstract art, and even meditation, is all about? Great quote by YOU!

  9. "Having a god within". I love that.

  10. Great collage - quite evocative of symbols and handwriting. It's communication in a most subtle and yet sophisticated form.

  11. Hi Leslie, great post...

    "Irwin Greenberg’s Words to Paint By" certainly an overdose of positive pointers.

    Your collage is a beautiful dance, another signature piece from you.

  12. ...I just loved learning the origins of the word "enthusiasm"...
    "having a God within"...beautiful and thought provoking!

    Your collage is beautiful too!

  13. Yes, enthusiasm...wonderful to have it, wonderful to show it!
    Being fully alive, yes, that's it!

  14. You are so right about the role the blog plays you feel so connected to those you follow and it is a wonderful place to go when things are a bit grim, or lacking in motivation.
    I always want to get up and "do" when I see your blog. Thankyou

  15. Yours is always an enthusiastic blog. It never disappoints, and the art is without fail uplifting!

    "like minded people". Kinda says it all, doesn't it?

  16. Hi Lyn,

    I'm sure we all have 'a god within', at least I hope we do, to provide the very different enthusiasms that we each have. I didn't know the root of this word and am glad you told us.

  17. Leslie, I'm back to announce you have an award over at my place.

    When you have a chance, come over...


Thank you for stopping by! Please sign the guest book and let me know what you think. Join the conversation. It's fun!