Respect your efforts, respect yourself. Self-respect leads to self-discipline. When you have both firmly under your belt, that's real power. ~Clint Eastwood
These two quotes are tied together. I have trouble following through when my self-esteem is in the basement. The self-loathing that I struggle with has been applied to me in layers over the years, due to words and perceptions I took on from others and from myself. I bought into criticisms of others and negative self-talk from myself, believing the lies. I have to peel these layers off my soul and it is painful. The temptation is always to give up and hide in the layers, and use them as an excuse. I still find myself taking on what is not mine. I met someone recently who just looked right through me as if I wasn't there and ignored my efforts to be friendly. I took that personally as if I was the one who was deeply flawed; like I deserved to be treated like that. The truth is that people are people and I didn't make them that way, and I can't expect them to be any different, either--they are what they are. I need to just shake it off, instead of applying another layer of yuck to myself. If I don't respect myself, then it is doubtful that others will.
This is a strange, but fun painting. It was a commission and the client wanted waterfalls that looked like they were in Hawaii. I couldn't find any pictures of Hawaiian falls so I just made one up. The falls are actually Multnomah Falls in Oregon. I just added the palm trees and the bird-of-paradise, which is woefully out of proportion. The client was happy with it. It is titled Paradise.