The Fine Art of Asking


Every time I create, I set intention. And then I ask. This asking is a key part of what we do in the Intentional Creativity movement. When we ask, we open a doorway in our heart for messages, inspiration and wonder to come through. But often I get asked….

What is this asking we do?
How do we ask?
How do we know when we’ve been answered?

As one of the Art Doctors supporting our Color of Woman students, this question of asking comes up often.  Everyone has to learn for themselves how to ask – and because we are also teachers, we learn how to hold the red thread container for our students which means we have to guide them in this way we have of asking.

Asking is how I know the being on my canvas wants turquoise instead of red. Asking tells me crow energy needs to fly into my creation. Or, that my being has a story to tell me and I need to get a cup of tea and sit with her. Asking illuminates my path and my next step and sometimes is entirely surprising.

crow strutting owning life

Asking is about connecting to my heart, opening my senses, and listening. Its about trusting and surrendering. When I connect to my heart, I engage the intuitive side of my brain. This is the key that unlocks the door.

If you have not consciously tried opening your heart before, sit in a restful quiet place. Ground yourself into the earth and the sky. Then feel your awareness in your body and bring it into your heart like a brilliant white light that surrounds you in love. Allow yourself to feel how your awareness is centered in your heart. As you feel that awareness in your heart, feel your heart open up like a doorway. 

Once I connect to my heart, the door is open. To step through that doorway, the next step is to let go. Let go of assumptions, desires, thoughts, worries. Allow them to drift away like wisps of cloud that were covering the sun. Use whatever process works for you. Release, banish, breathe out, dance like a wild woman – just let it all go because….

Letting go makes space for listening. 

AWagner.GazingInWonderOnce I have opened my heart and let go, I know there is space there for my asking to take form inside of. Only then can I ask: What is wanted?

I might ask my being, my painting, what do you want next? What colors? What symbols? Sometimes I ask specific questions and sometimes I just ask what is wanted. Allow your heart to guide you when you ask.

Then I listen. This is where surrendering comes in. Perhaps you are like me and have lots of ideas about where your painting needs to go, the direction, the colors, the symbols. When I ask, I must be open to the answer whatever it may be, and to do that I have to surrender all those ideas. I have to trust that whatever answer comes, that is the answer I need to hear. 

I listen with my open heart allowing what wants to come as an answer to sneak into my heart and brain and thoughts gently like a a breeze of warm ocean air or a feather softly landing in my palm or a rose petal brushing up against my cheek. Your experience will be what works for you. You will feel the answer in your body.

Once an answer has come into form, I return to my creative endeavor and paint the answer into my painting and write the answer into my journal as a part of the journey of the painting. 

This bringing the answer back to our creation is key, because honoring the answer sends a message to my heart and brain that I want more of these kinds of answers. Honoring the answer makes it easier to get more answers the next time I ask. I am feeding my ability to ask and to listen through my honoring of the answer. 

Overtime, you will find that you simply need to close your eyes, open your heart, and ask. And the answer will be right there waiting for you.

Do you have an “asking” practice you use?
Share it with us by commenting below!

Happy painting!

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Emergence 2016 smallCome join Art Doctor Annette on Paint Where You Are Sundays at the Cosmic Cowgirls Studio in Healdsburg. The theme this year is EMERGENCE!
Save the Date: March 20, 2016

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IntSketch- annette-croppedAnnette Wagner, M.A., is a Visionary Artist, Color of Woman Intentional Creativity teacher (many thanks to Ms. Shiloh for her teachings!), and Art Doctor.  She paints Contemporary Symbolism and watercolor sumi-e paintings. She works extensively with metaphor, symbol, and color. She is the Managing Editor of the Cosmic Cowgirls Magazine and staff at Shiloh Sophia Studios

Annette studied with American Master painter Sue Hoya Sellars and has a Masters in Women’s Spirituality  from Sofia University. Her background includes over 25 years of hi-tech experience including 21 patents. She is owned by her dancing daughter, two cat beings, the man of her heart, and her Muse. You can view her artwork and read more about Annette at:

Author: Annette Wagner

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