My Second Red Thread Circle
Last night I presented at Expressive Arts Florida’s monthly networking event. I offered to teach a short session on drawing the 20 line face. I decided to open the session with a Red Thread Circle. We had 22 women present. After introductions were made and we shared upcoming events and recent accomplishments, it was my time to present.
I opened by reading one of Shiloh’s poems from “Tea with the Midnight Muse” then introduced the Red Thread Circle as a ritual of connection, connecting us as people who want to draw a face, as artist’s, Expressive artists and women. I told a couple stories of the Red Thread and that as we passed it around the circle we would respond to an inquiry. Since we were there to draw faces the inquiry was, “What have you faced today?” This was met with deep sighs. Since this was to be a brief version of the RT Circle I asked them to limit their responses to a word or short phrase. As the thread was passed each woman shared and even though it was only a word or phrase, it was profound. We were bonded in new ways by hearing each other’s pain, concern, and worry that we carried with us into the circle. We breathed into that in silence. Then I moved to cutting the thread. I said that each of is only responsible for our part of this thread, but when needed we can tug on the thread for strength and support from others. They affirmed this as we cut the threads in silence.
Then we moved into the 20 line face demo. After talking about Shiloh and IC and my training, I had them follow along with me and make full and 3/4 profile 20 line faces. We held them up and laughed and admired each person’s faces. Then I added some simple, playful color explaining how we would use acrylics in a 13 step class. We had oil pastels available for everyone to color. the room got quiet and they got intense. I hadnt planned on it, but since we had time, I invited them to listen to their face to see if she had a name and anything to share about herself and to write it down. It got very quiet. Then I invited anyone who wished to show their face drawing, give her name, and share her message. They were beautiful and profound.
I have done this kind of work for a very long time yet I was amazed by the depth of experience we had in this simple experience.