Teaching to Change Hearts
I love telling people that I teach watercolour online. It's not because it's a great income source, or because I get to teach students from all over the world without leaving my home, although both of those things make me very happy. What really gets me excited about teaching is the opportunity I have had to change lives through my classes.
Summer Glade, watercolour, 14" x 21" (available)
That sounds a little crazy, I know. It's watercolour, not therapy, or sharing how my faith in God has coloured my life. I'm not helping anyone get famous or make a lot of money. But every so often I get an email that might say something like this;
I always wanted to learn to paint, but never thought I could. You have helped me feel like I can paint whatever I want and just enjoy myself in the process!
I needed this so much. I've been feeling a little lost since my husband passed away.
After someone criticized my art, I stopped painting for many years. You have helped me remember what painting is all about and I'm having so much fun without worrying what anyone thinks!
What happened for me, and what is happening for many of my students, is that when we change our thinking about our art, it influences how we think about our lives as well. Saying "yes" to art often involves stepping outside of our comfort zone. Confronting a fear in one area makes it easier to confront other fears and obstacles in our lives. Redefining success as the attempt rather than the finished product is a confidence builder and often helps us make peace with our mistakes. And being kind and generous to people who are on the same journey as I am is just another way of recognizing that we are all in this together. It's more important than any masterpiece I may paint.
Interested in teaching online? I share how I got started in this video.