Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Nourishing a Hope: Painting with a Purpose

I wasn't planning to participate in Wishcasting Wednesday today because I have this little chicklet of an project that emerged yesterday in my consciousness and I have been consumed with creating the perfect nest for her to thrive and grow. But when I read today's prompt, I knewn she needs to be introduced to you all now.

What do I wish to nourish?

I wish to nourish this dream:

I am calling this project: Painting with a Purpose: A Summer of Creative Connection. Through this project, I want to nourish Hope for children who may have little to hope or believe in. I wish to nourish connection through painting: connection with my daughter but more importantly, connection with the children who live in Welfare Centers (orphanages) in China. I wish to nourish the message of Half the Sky Foundation's Art in Our HeARTS art a-thon and raise money through my art to sponsor a child in the "Somebody Loves Me" program.

This is a project near and dear to my heart. For the first 23 months of Cowgirl's life she lived in a Social Welfare Center in southern China. I know she received good care there because she came to us not only very healthy, but able to express affection, curiosity and most importantly, trust. She attached to us quickly. Parenting an adopted child, the issue of attachment and bonding is the number one concern. The ability to form intimate, loving and engaged relationships is created through our having been attached to our parents or a primary caregiver in the first years of our lives. Sadly, many centers lack the resources and staff to provide the intensive individual care necessary for healthy attachment.

All the children who are held and loved will know how to love others ... Spread these virtues in the world. Nothing more is needed. (Meng Zi, c. 300 B.C.)

The mission of Half the Sky Foundation is to provide individual care and stimulation for children living in welfare centers. Their stated goal is "to ensure every one of China's orphans has a caring adult in her life." I have supported this stellar organization ever since Cowgirl came into my life. When they announced their summer Art a-Thon project, I knew we had to participate.

Here's the plan: Starting now and until the end of July, Cowgirl and I will be collaborating on small scale paintings (5 x 7 and 8 x 10 inches I am thinking) on canvas board. Each week we will create at least one new painting with a theme selected by Cowgirl (oh, this could get interesting!) Beginning in July and running for 4 weeks we will be offering a give away of the paintings. On Fridays I will be posting an update of our progress and a chance to win one of our collaborative pieces. To enter you must make a donation to Half the Sky (more info on this below) and leave a comment each of the 4 Fridays (be sure to let me know you donated!) We will select a name at random on each of the following Monday mornings.

Things will get rolling on Friday, July 2 with the final week being Friday, July 23. Depending upon the response, I may add a bonus week on Friday July 30, so stay tuned! I image we will have more than enough art to share, so who knows what bonus offerings may bubble up in July?

You only have to donate once, but in order to qualify each week for the drawing, you must leave a comment and include in your comment that you made a donation.

To visit my pledge page and make a donation now simply click here. Or use this badge over on my sidebar:

I want to nourish the belief in myself and my daughter that what we do does matter; that we each can make a difference in our own, unique way. I want to nourish the conviction that Art can save lives and that art is a vehicle for hope, understanding and connection.

As I wish, so may it be!

(Please help me spread the word! Any suggestions, support, tweets, or shout outs as things get rolling will be greatly appreciated (and humbly accepted.) And if you are unable to comment, please feel free to email me: Lishofmann(at)novia(dot)net)


  1. Wow. As Lis wishes for herself and so many others, so I wish for her also.

  2. Dear Lis,
    Thank you so much for visiting my blog on this Wishcasting Wednesday. For now I have something else to be thankful for...You! I love your blog and cannot wait to read more about you and Cowgirl. Your wish is full of heart and purpose and I just know it will come true! It's the taking of those little inklings and pursuing them day after day that makes it happen. As you wish for yourself, I wholeheartedly wish for you too! Also, I'd like to thank you because I'm going to call the moments of gratitude on my blog....Gratitude Soup!

  3. I love this so brought tears (the good kind) to my eyes.
    As you wish for yourself, I wish for you as well!

  4. As Lis wishes for herself..I wish for her also!
    Wow hon that is beautiful and amazing and wow!!
    I will go off and see all the info... I was wondering if you might like art from others maybe...from children or me? Just a thought!
    Wonderful hon..wonderful!! Hugs, Sarah

  5. awesome!

    i have 2 friends who have adopted from china. they'll be interested in this!

    as lis wishes for herself, I wish for also. :)

  6. oh my this is so beautiful!
    as lis wishes for herself, so i wish for her also.

  7. just amazing...such a giving thing to've given me a happy heart to start my

  8. What a wonderful project - I see I wasn't the only one to have a lump in my throat.
    The issue of early attachment is a very dear one to me. I saw it with one of my stepdaughters and I see it too often in the schools.
    My broather and his wife adopted a little girl from China and she too had a wonderful start in life.!
    (Lis I would like to donate - but I don't do it on line - can you email me your address and I will send a cheque.)
    Can't wait to see the great paintings you 2 create! What a fabulous project and legacy for Cowgirl!

  9. beautiful. beautiful post, and beautiful, moving video. this made my heart feel bigger and brighter. Can't wait to see where this will lead to...may you continue to nourish this wonderful project!

  10. This is beautiful, Lis. And what an exciting project! I'm so excited to watch it unfold.

    As you wish for yourself, so I wish for you as well.

  11. Bev and others: If you are unable to donate online, there is a place on the pledge page to click for a downloadable form and then you can mail a check in. If this doesn't work for you, then certainly I would be happy to collect checks and send them on.

  12. Wow Lis what a wonderful project. I applaud you and can't wait to see the paintings.
    As Lis wishes for herself I also wish for her.

  13. As Lis wishes for herself and others, I wish for her as well. What a wonderful wish. We are so lucky to be here as you start this project. I know the outpouring of love for what you are doing will be awesome.

  14. As Lis wishes for herself I so lovingly wish this for her also.

  15. love love love this! may it be oh so true

    "I want to nourish the belief in myself and my daughter that what we do does matter; that we each can make a difference in our own, unique way. I want to nourish the conviction that Art can save lives and that art is a vehicle for hope, understanding and connection."

    thank you. i desire to do something similar. hearing these words adds more nourishment to that dream.

  16. I felt like a little kid who went on vacation when I read your post. As I settled into my relaxed state, a huge breath of surrender left my body. I absolutely adore your work (and play) for this charity. "Art can save lives"-wow, it's a very powerful statement which lets me expand my mind. As Lis wishes for herself, I wish for her also.

  17. Good luck with it Lis. Your little promo video is magnificent! A very worthy cause and a really great idea. Have a lovely weekend,

  18. What an amazing, thoughtful idea! If we don't win one of the masterpieces, we'll have to buy one. I love having art in the house that friends have made. Nathan and I are always so thankful that the caregivers in Ava's orphanage gave her so much attention and she was able to easily bond and attach with us. Thanks to organizations like Half The Sky, more and more children will be able to do the same. I love that you're doing this. Way to give your art a purpose! (Not that making yourself happy by doing it isn't purpose enough.)


  19. so cool Lis. what a great idea and a way to honor your art, your time with cowgirl, your desires to honor these children, your willingness to devote you time, energy, creativity and then gifting the results :)

    yes, art is a vehicle for hope, understanding and connection :) this is great for you :)

    hears to your wishes, your dreams and your heart, along with Cowgirls heart and heritage being honored :)

    as lis wishes for herself, I wish for her also :) xo jana

  20. this sounds so great-- good luck!! :)

  21. love this, love the video, love you!

    as Lis wishes for herself, so I wish for her also.

  22. such a wonderful idea. I will check back in. I so enjoyed your video, you are both lovely people, glad to 'know' you.

  23. I was crying as soon as I started reading this. It's such a beautiful post and a beautiful idea. I immediately went to the page to donate and realized I don't have any money in my paypal account,lol. Guess I'll have to wait a few days for it to transfer.

    In the meantime I posted on twitter directing others to your post and asked that they do the same. I hope it helps. You are a shinning light!

    Wanna be my mentor ;)?

  24. Your project sounds wonderful, and I can't wait to see it unfold. As Lis wishes for herself, I wish also for her!

  25. I can't wait to see what themes your Cowgirl comes up with. We'll be eager to see how it all turns out. Thanks for all your good work!

  26. Fantastic post and cause, Lis! I'm sitting here giggling at the thought of Cowgirl being creative director! heeee! :-) Can't wait to see what you both come up with - I know it will be fabulous! I'm so excited, I just lovvvve this idea and I'm looking forward to watching it blossom here. Lots of love, Fi xx

  27. Oh this is wonderful Lis ~ I'm so sorry I missed this, but so happy to know about this organization so I can offer my support too. This is so beautiful and so true.
    'All the children who are held and loved will know how to love others ... Spread these virtues in the world. Nothing more is needed.'

  28. isn't life amazing.... squam shook me awake and i realized the family i've been craving~ i must create. being a single woman, i am looking into adoption. and post squam i have been immersing myself in soulodge~ where i saw you and your beautiful posting.... which led me here... the universe provides doesn't she?
    i would love to communicate with you more~