Carrying Capacity of Colours

Art is the representation and extension of human emotion. Winnie, Student Counsellor of the College, said, ‘The word “heart” is composed of “he” and “art”. When a person concentrates on art creation, his inner feelings will be represented.’ Sometimes, humans find it hard to verbalize their emotion through logical language. But the artwork creation process may echo their feelings and release their emotion. In mid-April, nine SHHO students experienced the carrying capacity of colours in The Wells and expressed their emotion through ‘Circle Painting’. The room was immersed in soft music. Winnie gently struck her Tibetan singing bowl and began a soulful journey with all the participants.

Ancient Greeks regarded circles as the symbol of perfection. Circles also symbolize fullness and integration. ‘Circle painting’ originates from the United States. The founder Hiep Nguyen hopes to help circle painting participants release their soul power. By nurturing their inclusiveness, collaboration and imagination will the participants be connected. At the beginning of the workshop, Winnie guided the participants to do mindfulness meditation to help them focus on their physical and inner conditions. They are also encouraged to project their emotion from body to the drawing paper. Winnie said, ‘Our bodies never lie. They will get sick and be in pain. They will tell you they cannot bear more.  When we become mindful of our bodies, the centering effect will release our suppressed emotion or even the long-accumulated stress.’

Much vexation comes from uncertainties. With mindfulness on the present can we soothe our emotion. Having physically and mentally relaxed, the students chose their favourite colours and got prepared to draw on a large piece of paper. They first drew their own large circles and later some geometric patterns. The students were absorbed in the drawing process as the drawing helped them concentrate on the present. Awaken by Winnie’s gentle tinging sound, they were asked to walk around the drawing paper and drew upon the geometric patterns they were interested in. The pleasant melodious music filled every corner of The Wells. Winnie asked, ‘While you are drawing, do you tend to start a new pattern in an empty space or retouch the existing patterns?’ 

A special feature of ‘circle painting’ is change of location to add colours to others’ patterns. A participant found it a good way to collaborate and complement the drawing of one another. Admiration of others’ drawing helps ignite participants’ creativity. Collaboration makes the artwork more colourful and the patterns more appealing. The process of circle painting is like experience life, a space where different people come and go in different phases. We have to let go of holding tight our own ‘territories’ and allow others to enter our circles and add colours. Life is fluid itself. Only through opening our minds can we enjoy the process of enriching one another.

Art is not confined to those who master it. With willingness to embrace new experience, ordinary people can utilize the uniqueness of diverse art forms to release our authentic feelings. Winnie struck her singing bowl again and reminded students of completing their drawing. Afterwards, all the participants stood up hand in hand. They appreciated the full picture which was interconnected with different circles in bountiful colours. The circle painting without edged patterns symbolizes a harmonious world where social distance between people is eliminated.