Spiral In, Spiral Out

glowing orange spiral on deep red background, painting by Lynne Baur
The 30-Doodles-in-30-Days Challenge is drawing to a close, but one thing I have discovered is that everyone has enjoyed having a daily  doodling suggestion (a “prompt”) as a creative springboard. Since I’ve been on a spiral kick myself lately, I invite you to create a “doodle” (or doodles) based on a spiral or spirals. (Remember, […]

The 30-Doodles-in-30-Days Challenge is drawing to a close, but one thing I have discovered is that everyone has enjoyed having a daily  doodling suggestion (a “prompt”) as a creative springboard.

Since I’ve been on a spiral kick myself lately, I invite you to create a “doodle” (or doodles) based on a spiral or spirals.

(Remember, “doodle” means whatever your creative spirit needs! It could be an actual back-of-the-envelope-while-on-the-phone doodle. It could be an intuitive painting, or a drawing, a sculpture, a collage, or even a poem or song.)

Judging from what I see from fellow artists, and comments on my own work, a lot of us are fond of spirals.

At least part of this is probably because of the many spirals found in nature.

fiddlehead fern

Photo used without alteration under Creative Commons Attribution license. (Image linked to original source.)

fossil nautilus shell

Photo used without alteration under Creative Commons Attribution license. (Image linked to original source.)

The sense of movement a spiral conveys is also part of its appeal. Gazing at a spiral can give you a sense of being drawn downward, to a place of peace and contemplation, or inward to an interior space of memory or self-exploration. Or a spiral can give a sense of outflowing energy and expansiveness.

glowing orange spiral on deep red background, painting by Lynne Baur

One of my 30-paintings-in-30-days pieces. I’m working on several others featuring spirals.

Simply drawing a spiral is soothing. Our joints naturally move in arcs, so the circularity of a spiral feels natural and effortless, while the inward or outward movement gives the motion interest and variation. Spirals are easy to connect to arcs and to each other, to decorate a design or create a texture.

How does it make you feel to gaze at a spiral? Or draw one? Is it like a dance?  Are you going down the drain? Or being flung exuberantly out to the stars?

What images, thoughts or memories do spirals call up for you? Do they have special associations or meanings for you?

Does it make a difference which way the spiral turns? Whether you start in the center or on the outside, or spiral in, and then back out?

I invite you to join me in experimenting with spirals this week.

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