soul and purpose

"Through my paintings I hope to communicate a personal enthusiasm and respect for the natural world, thus encourage in others an active stewardship of same." -- JEANNE ILLENYE

annabelle hydrangeas white picket fence rose arbor home sweet home -- my little slice of paradise as the inspiration for my work - painting in zen

As I've been working hard to fulfill all the orders for pet portraits as a result of my recently concluded Summer Sale, and therefore have not produced many still life paintings, I thought it would be nice to keep in touch by sharing a little something special with you . . . a peek into my private world . . . my little slice of paradise for all you garden lovers out there!  Hope you enjoy! 

On Painting in Zen
 "For me it most noticeably occurred about 15 years ago with the creation of the most challenging paintings of my life, my huge, elaborate florals. The process was so intense and required so much mental energy it was peculiarly more work than studying differential equations or chemistry. Those paintings took months to complete as I taught myself how to grow to a new level. What is that Zen feeling for me? Where time is incalculable...observation and skill merge into a spiritual experience. Hurdles are long forgotten and I seem to be in a comfortable plateau in terms of color mixing, composition, balance, etc. The tea kettle boils dry...the promise of only a few minutes at my easel soon brings the realization six hours later that it's 3AM...the insatiable desire to keep recording ideas on panels that stack up by the dozens in my studio before I can find time to get back to them...the meditative state that occurs every time I sit at my easel...I call it auto pilot...the ability to tune out...the familiarity of spending so much solitary time in deep concentration. Only the jarring sound of a phone or the undeniable sweetness of birdsong or fluttering wings splashing in the birdbath can pull me away momentarily from my easel...before my work once again beckons. It's a spiritual experience which I hope my work someday lives up to. Right now I'd say the richness of the process actually exceeds the results...but I'm working on that...." Jeanne Illenye (c) 2010


Mariano Zucchi said...

Hi Jeanne,
very nice garden, and walkway. Wishing you many nice walk in his path!


Thank you SO much, Mariano! Here the garden is becoming weary in Sept. but I do have some spectacular photos in mid season when it was an ethereal froth of white wildflowers woven through the hydrangeas! Have to find those pics for you! When one has a bit of earth to toil and stay close to one's roots (no pun intended) it's so deeply enriching and gratifying. Always lovely to hear from you! Jeanne

Anonymous said...

It is a charming view of a romantic garden, Jeanne.
I love it. I quite understand why you are inspired by nature when I see this lane.


Thank you SO much, Helene! I've always loved white gardens and since my front garden is a vibrant array of blooms competing for attention, it seemed obvious to extend the coolness of the white garden by the pool to the approaching lane. It took a fair amount of energy to lay the walk, install the cedar arbor, build the fence as well as plant the shrubs but the joy that is derived from our effort is immensely inspiring. Even when friends and family, especially my husband, object to my contunuous undertaking of such projects, I am not deterred for my desire to be close to Nature must be gratified. Thank you for your lovely comments! Jeanne

Marie @ Sally Lee by the Sea said...

You have the garden of my dreams ~ very inspiring, to say the least.

I'm a new follower stopping by from My Romantic Home's Show n Tell Friday.

It's wonderful to meet you!



Thank you SO much, Marie! I'm so glad you've stopped by my little blog to peek at some of my garden's blooms! I'm new to Romantic Homes' Show 'n Tell so uploaded the wrong pic -- wanted to use my arbor but that's okay I guess. I'm sure to be visiting many sites linked from theirs, and I'll pop over and see yours, too! Thank you for your lovely comments! Jeanne

Cozy Home Scenes said...

Lovely, lovely garden. I love hydrangeas, so you know why I like it so much. You must love walking out in that garden everyday!


Thank you SO much! I, too, love hydrangeas, particularly Annabelle's luminous white blooms that seem to glow from within at peak season. Here they're shown turning into their fall display of green and brown which is when I cut them to add to my Christmas garlands. Thank you for your lovely comments! Jeanne

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I was published in Visual Language Magazine


Blessed are those who see beautiful things in humble places where others see nothing.

names of colors A-Z