Artist Denise Trach has many facets to her life. In addition to creating art, Denise teaches AP Literature, Creative Writing, College Reading & Writing, and English at Carmel High School and is mom to two daughters. She says, “I finally found a label that I love: artist. I’ve created two lovely daughters, an amazing teacher career, a rewarding writing life, and a painting poetry experience. I use painting as a means of meditation, and doing so has brought so much peace to my life. Discovering this passion has been a blessing.”
We caught up with Denise recently and asked her a few questions about her art and how it intertwines with her spirituality. Here is what she had to say:
At what point in your life did you start thinking of yourself as an artist?
Honestly, as a writer my entire life, I’ve always considered myself an artist. Last November, however, when I started to sell my paintings did I begin to consider myself a visual artist as well.
Ever-evolving. I am always searching—myself, others, the world. I feel that it is nothing finite and everything infinite.
How does your spirituality find expression in your art?
My art IS my spirituality manifested visually. Because I cannot find it within myself to sit in meditation, I use zentangling and painting as a form of meditation and as a connectedness to others.
How do you connect with divine flow when you are creating? Is it an intentional process that you can duplicate?
This is a lovely gift for me; it simply comes when I put my intention on the work at hand. This flow keeps me present; THIS is my mindfulness at its best.
Sometimes ideas are triggered by conversations with people and their experiences and pain/happiness. Sometimes the ideas are a discussion with other artists. Mostly, though, I just follow my thought through my hand. And then I am at peace.
If you were going to teach your creative process to someone else, what would be one or two of the key things you would share?
I actually teach this process to my students. Several of the students that I teach suffer from terrible anxiety, so we often take a break from the literature and writing to simply connect back to ourselves through zentangling. I keep pages in our classroom for students to use when they are feeling especially disconnected or there is too much “noise.”
These go hand in hand. I am ABLE to evolve spiritually because I practice my art, and my art has evolved because I am on a continual spiritual journey.
While I’m no longer recording new episodes for the Art as Worship radio show, I’ll continue to feature artists using their written words to describe the connection between their art and their spirituality. Access the Art as Worship radio interviews on Empower Radio. Listen to an encore presentation of an artist’s interview each Wednesday at 9am Eastern on Empower Radio. Like us on Facebook at Art as Worship, then share your art and comments. Contact Vanessa Lowry at vlowry (@) gmail.com if you would like to be a featured artist on Art as Worship. Namaste!