All Roads Lead to Burgundy

journeys of the heart, painting, pilgrimage, the creative process

Series no. 1 ~ The first of four series of paintings I am in the midst of creating is an exploration of my journey on the Camino in France. I call it All Roads Lead to Burgundy.

How did I get here?

It all came together through a French wine tasting, an art project with maps and compasses, and a decades long desire to walk the Camino. 

Here is a peek at the project story:

How do you draw a map of your heart?

For years, two dreams haunted me with that ‘someday?’ question. I ached to return to France, the culture I love most and the foreign language I know best. And I read and talked and daydreamed about making the fabled Camino, as journeys of pilgrimage have long been a recurring theme in my personal history.

Pilgrimage, I’ve heard it said, starts with loss. For me, it started with a longing bigger than I could hold: for the full and adventurous life I hadn’t dared to believe was possible.

It began with a series of startlingly moving encounters and continued with three years of a strange interior pilgrimage ~ “My Camino, at Home” as I called it ~ which sharpened my life in a myriad of ways.

At a certain point, stepping into these dreams of mine turned from I’ll do it One Day to Now is the Time. And the culmination came through Burgundy, a region often called the heart of France. How apropos.

This painting series is a chronicle of my week on the Camino through the French countryside.

Vézelay
day one on the
Chemin de Saint Jacques

I will be using my own photographs for inspiration, such as the one above. Over the coming weeks I’ll be sharing about the development of these paintings and my creative process as I go.

How do you draw a map of your heart? Join me as I find out.

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Voie de Vézelay ~ Day 3

journeys of the heart, photography, pilgrimage

As I have been busy acclimating to France, and starting my walking pilgrimage, all my posts are going to be be published out of order for awhile, so bear with me!

{Voie de Vézelay ~ Day 3} I am on day 3 of about 7, and just passed through Anthien.

This is totally in the middle of farmland. These French cows must think I’m crazy! (It might be my hot pink rain jacket).

Extremes on a pilgrimage are to be expected, and so with mine:

Thursday was 106 degrees, Friday was 90 degrees with a strong breeze, and today is 70 degrees with a light drizzle. That may sound horrible, but it’s actually been fine. I take twice as long to cover one kilometer and take a ton of breaks as I go, sometimes stopping to make a photo every five minutes. My style is definitely to saunter.