My Favourite Life: 10 things you didn’t know about me

My favourite things in life is really an endless list

But I have struggled to reduce everything into 10 things that you might find interesting about my life. Of course, they are all 100% true.

Please tell me your favourite things in the comments box below the post.

‘Gandhi’ by Simon Brushfield (2013) Pen and ink on paper 21cm x 10cm $450

1. I was born on the 27/7/70. My favourite number is 7

2. My favourite personal grooming activity is to clean my ears with cotton buds because it feels amazing

3. My favourite television show is Cesar Milan’s “Dog Whisperer” because it teaches me about the enormous similarities between how human beings behave and how dogs behave socially

4. My favourite food in the morning is waking up for breakfast to poached eggs on toast covered by last nights lamb gravy. (Don’t knock it till you try it!)

5. On long boring plane trips I get hours of enjoyment giggling uncontrollably by watching practical joke television shows like “Just for laughs”. (I also watch them on YouTube with my phone whilst laying in bed at night)

6. During my mid 20’s I owned a successful business hiring windsurfers, whereby every summer I sat on a beautiful Australian beach, and people handed me hundreds of dollars everyday for my effort.

7. My favourite colour is yellow and my favourite fruit bananas. For my final year project at University I created a 10 foot three-dimensional realistic banana. My lecturer said it couldn’t be done, but I did it and got top marks. Also, another useless fact… my 1960s Malibu surfboard is yellow, and nicknamed the ‘big banana’

8. At age 14, I went to boarding school in Melbourne and cried all year from homesickness, being bullied and alone. This was not my favourite experience!

9. I once applied for a high profile job in a posh Sydney recruitment agency with a real 1950s porcelain kitchen sink. My resume was rolled up and placed into where the hot tap should’ve been. The cover letter read “Employ Simon Brushfield and he’ll give you everything including the kitchen sink”. I put the heavy kitchen sink on the receptionist’s immaculate marble desk and the office fell about with hysterical laughter.

10. I once played bass and sung in a Sydney rock band. The title song off our first album was aired on Australia’s leading commercial radio station, triple M

‘Lollipop Trees in the You Yangs’ by Simon Brushfield (2013) Acrylic & Oil on Canvas 90cm x 60cm $2200

© Copyright Simon Brushfield – My Favourite Life: 10 things you didn’t know about me

The Secret of Happiness Revealed: Aristotle teaches happiness


If you want happiness and you’re interested to purchase a Simon Brushfield original painting click here .

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Creativity: How to Renew your Creative Energy and Increase Power

Green painting by Simon Brushfield Aristotle Happiness Quote 1024x791 Creativity: How to Renew your Creative Energy and Increase Power

If you’re interested to purchase or know more about Simon Brushfield’s original paintings click here .

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Natures secret reveals an essential ingredient in the creative process

Natural Beauty painting by Simon Brushfield Aristotle Marvelous Quote1 1024x791 Natures secret reveals an essential ingredient in the creative process

© Copyright Simon Brushfield – Natures secret revealed through an original painting and a famous poet

Original Painting: How I Make a Masterpiece Meaningful

Original paintings are often meaningful

Indian people are sometimes surprising

I want you to meet Ramesh

Alias ‘The Chai Guy’

Ramesh the chai guy from India Original Painting: How I Make a Masterpiece Meaningful

Ramesh The Chai Guy from India with his trusted bike

He’s a polite, beautiful quiet spoken Indian, who seems to really enjoy his humble occupation

The ‘Chai Guy’ travels around Bangalore on his bike selling tea

He appears 11.30am sharp everyday selling his wares. As sure as the sunrises, Ramesh is on time

Now, I have spent many years in Asia, and here’s a fact…

Point 1. Asian people are not normally known for their punctuality.

I love Asians.

But if an Asian understands a westerner is precious about time, they’ll make you wait even longer. Just to prove a point

In Australia, I drink tea

But Chai is my favourite

There are many varieties of Chai in India, unique local tastes that originate from different regions of the country

Below is The Chai Guy’s bag of tricks

His unique system of working

Rameshs basket of Chai 2 Original Painting: How I Make a Masterpiece Meaningful

Ramesh’s unique basket of different varieties of Chai Tea which is carried on his bike around India.

But here’s what really fascinates me…

Like the Chai Guy, Indian people can be highly structured, organised and very disciplined with time

But most times, they’re completely unstructured. Even totally confused about time

This is why it interests me…

The same characteristics are the key to incredible creativity

A balanced system somewhere between the structured and unstructured, confused and clear thinking, is very important when creating a quality original painting. Creativity requires a high level of organisation and structure, but also disorganisation and free flowing space

It’s the system of working that’s essential

Point 2. Top artists know how to balance confusion and clarity into self-disciplined activity.

At any moment weird things can happen in India

The electricity might go off for extended periods of time. Hot water may cease. The taxi may not appear. Noises might suddenly go off. All for no reason

But back to being punctual…

This is why I am obsessive about time…

Just in case something weird happens. And I need time for the unexpected. I like to arrive at least 30 minutes early to everything

Especially as a foreigner living in a strange country, leaving things to the last minute creates enormous anxiety, which I prefer to avoid

If I have an exhibition coming up, my original paintings will be completed many weeks, if not months beforehand. If a commission deadline is looming, I will be finished many weeks earlier

Here’s another reason why I am so particular about time…

It goes very quickly

Point 3. I like to have time available to relax and make important refinements to my original paintings at the end of the creative process.

However, I know many artists who operate in a frantic rush to the end. But I can’t live with that stress and panic.

It’s the minor creative refinements at the end of the process that can really improve an original painting. Becoming aware of these minor adjustments requires much time and careful contemplation.

Here’s what is essential, in a productive system, to enriching ones creative life…

Reflection

Just gazing in contemplation

Silence

When I was a child I had many enjoyable experiences with my father. One of those special memories, around age 12, was something that only a sensitive artistic boy like myself would enjoy

I have always loved native Australian birds

Point 4. When birds fly, so do my thoughts, birds set me free from the earth bound world.

Especially Pelicans gliding high above in the bright blue Australian sky

As a child, after work my father would come home tired. He’d grab a beer from the fridge and we’d both check on our canaries. I would sit beside him on the bench and watch our colourful canary’s fly gracefully across the 4 metre long aviary.

He would ask about my day at school. And I’d reply, ‘It was good’.

But generally, we said very little to each other.

In the quietness of bird watching, the canaries would occasionally reach their lungs to heaven and break out into glorious song. It’s beautiful to hear a canary at full throttle.

We listened and watched the birds for hours. Observing the finer elements of bird life, until mum would call us for dinner

These days, when I finish a painting, the same principle applies

I need quality time with my original paintings, to observe the finer elements. I need to observe the texture, and how the paint fly’s across the canvas, the composition of the original painting, and how the colours sing

Australian Lorikeets painting by Simon Brushfield 674x1024 Original Painting: How I Make a Masterpiece Meaningful

“Australian Rainbow Lorikeets” by Simon Brushfield. Acrylic, Linseed Oil and Charcoal on paper (Sold: Private Acquisition)

Peaceful reflection creates space and freedom in the mind. Allowing whatever that enters to come and go, without judgement.

Just observing.

Final Point. It’s observing the finer elements of life that really make the masterpiece meaningful.

If you’re interested in purchasing an original painting, or maybe you would like to commission Simon, please click here .

© Copyright Simon Brushfield – Original Painting: How I Make a Masterpiece Meaningful

Sunrise painting and the C.S.Lewis reason for Christianity

Sunrise painting by Simon Brushfield Quote 1024x791 Sunrise painting and the C.S.Lewis reason for Christianity

Gandhi’s Creative Lesson: Conquering the Bully of Intimidation

It’s a common theme.

A strong bully verses weak victim.

But this story is reversed.

On a global scale.

Britain sought control over a seemingly weaker Eastern power.

India.

But one inspiring man, wrapped in bed sheets, had a different idea.

Point 1. Gandhi understood the power of humility over intimidation.

His weapon?

The collective Asian spirit.

gandhi photo Gandhi’s Creative Lesson: Conquering the Bully of Intimidation

Mahatma Gandhi wrapped in his customary white robes

With his gentle leadership, the vulnerable Indians conquered a violent bully.

Gandhi was a native Indian, but educated at the University of London.

He knew the enemy’s weakness.

Arrogance.

Gandhi desired to give his nation a special legacy.

An enormous gift.

Freedom from British tyranny.

The feeling of Independence.

He succeeded.

During his indomitable quest, Gandhi taught the largely uneducated Indian people a simple principle.

‘Satyagraha’

Which is the resistance to tyranny by civil disobedience.

An innovative idea for the time.

Non-violent people power swept the country like an epidemic.

On a very large scale.

Point 2. A frail humble old man conquered the full strength of British power.

The bully was beaten.

Without a single weapon.

India’s independence was achieved in 1948.

An Amazing feat.

A gentle man, Gandhi taught, “There would be nothing to frighten you, if you refuse to be afraid”

He cared deeply for his people.

Gandhi’s (1869-1948) birthday is now commemorated internationally as a day of non-violence.

So how does this inspirational Indian leader relate to original art?

Gandhi was a highly creative individual.

Let me show you the link.

Here’s an important fact…

Point 3. Gandhi shared a devoted relationship with his mother.

Interestingly, many of history’s great minds had a close bond to their mother.

Ladies are strong communicators often expressing deep emotions. They care.

Women dress in many colours.

Their intuition is finely tuned.

Women are softer, more expressive than men.

Less likely to use aggressive violence.

When a son has a close relationship with his mother, it greatly impacts the male’s personality and creative ability.

Here’s the reason why…

Point 4. Creativity comes from the feminine side of life.

In my experience, women appreciate art more easily than men.

The large majority of my customers are women.

Unlike masculine western countries, the Asian soul is feminine.

Sensitive in nature.

But the Indians proved the power of Eastern humility and sensitivity, over Western arrogance and intimidation.

Indians are smart people. Now world leaders in technology.

They’re no longer afraid of any western super power.

India is growing strong. Independence builds confidence.

Here’s the similarity…

When a creative person refuses to be afraid, rejecting arrogant comments designed to intimidate their sensitive soul, something amazing happens…

Confidence grows.

And strength arises.

Negative comments lose their power.

“Your wasting your life on art”

“You’ll never survive doing art”

“Your living in fantasy land”

“Get a real job”

These comments must be rejected.

Discouragement comes from every direction.

A thick skin is needed when defending your soul and fighting for creative survival.

Like the Indians, the journey towards independence can be rough for a creative person.

Despite the setbacks, I’ve sought freedom from greed and arrogant intimidation.

At all times.

The greatest freedom comes when I accept the truth.

I’m an artist.

Acceptance and genuine humility brings peace to a sensitive soul.

Point 5. Being true to oneself, independence is strengthened.

Relaxation and clarity arrives.

Freedom from tyranny and fear.

The cowardly bully is conquered.

Negative comments ignored.

Love refills.

Artistic vision returns and the imagination soars.

Free again to create beautiful paintings like the one below.

to purchase this unique original painting.

Happy Couple AAD Gandhi’s Creative Lesson: Conquering the Bully of Intimidation

‘Happy Couple’ by Simon Brushfield (2011) Acrylic & Carcoal on canvas 1m x 1m

© Copyright Simon Brushfield – Gandhi’s Creative Lesson: Conquering the Bully of Intimidation

India is extreme

Upon first arriving in India I was shocked

By two things especially…

Point 1. New Delhi was freezing cold

The morning temperature was only 1 degree

How surprising

Other months, temperatures climbed above 40 degrees

India is an exotic land of extremes

Where Bangalore street artists decorate the pavement

Street Artist Festival of Cow India: Creativity, Colour and the Curious Power of Belief

A Bangalore street artist paints the pavement during the festival of Cow in India

Bringing colour to the otherwise dirty street of India

The second thing that amazed me was this…

Point 2. New Delhi streets are filled with men

“Where are all the females?” I asked my local friend

With a typical Indian head wobble, I was told the shocking truth…

Parents often abort their babies when they discover it’s a female

Human beings are weird creatures

We believe the strangest ideas

Many Asian parents have this belief…

Males are more valuable than females

Wow

That got me thinking about beliefs in India

Point 3. Background cultural beliefs shape a persons life indelibly

The beliefs of Indian parents tightly control their children’s future

However, the beliefs of western parents often have less impact

I adopted the beliefs of my parents up to a point

At university, things changed

Nobody else in my family was creative

Neither mum or dad could draw a stick figure

My parents asked, “Where did this black sheep in the family come from?”

They were puzzled

Being surrounded by creative people at university, my ideas changed

Here’s what I discovered…

Point 4. Being amongst creative people with similar beliefs was exhilarating

For example, I became more courageous with my clothing

Regularly wearing shockingly bright colours

Turning away from my conservative background

New beliefs bought greater freedom

Predictably, I was labelled weird

But that’s fine

I simply love colour

And I’m happy to express it

Indians love colour too

Indian colour sari India: Creativity, Colour and the Curious Power of Belief

Happy Indian woman wearing a pink sari. A colour that offsets her wonderful dark skin.

In fact, they have a “Holy Day” celebration in India when everyone throws colour at each other

A strange belief

But great fun

Upon first discovering I was an artist, everything about creativity excited me

It still does

At university, I was overwhelmingly happy to be immersed in the freedom of art

My girlfriend felt frustrated saying

“Simon, why can’t you be normal?”

Growing older I’ve come to realise this…

Point 5. Nothing is normal

Especially in exotic India

Humans hold very odd beliefs

Beliefs that guide people through life

For example, Southern Indians have a festival of the cow

Where they pray to the cow as their special God

And place cow statues in shopping centres

Shopping Centre Festival of Cow India: Creativity, Colour and the Curious Power of Belief

Cow God statue in a shopping centre during the festival of the cow in India.

On this day Indian women dress in spectacular colours

But do I believe the cow is a sacred God?

Or males are more valuable than females?

Of course not

However, there’s no judgement against a different belief system

Just incredible curiosity

Point 6. Curiosity fuels my creativity

I love to understand people and their different beliefs

Individuals are fascinating

Their colourful personalities are beautiful

Life is all about colour

Maybe you’re thinking of commissioning an original painting?

to bring more colour into your home or office.

© Copyright Simon Brushfield – Creativity, Colour and India: The curious power of belief

Original Painting: Aristotle teaches Perfection in Work

Work in Progress by Simon Brushfield Aristotle Work Quote 1024x791 Original Painting: Aristotle teaches Perfection in Work

Creativity is turning suffering into creative inspiration

Creativity is fun

Suffering is not

But pain is unavoidable in life

Human beings encounter suffering everyday on a variety of levels

This article shows how to deal with pain and suffering, as creativity is often closely linked

One of the most famous original paintings that express human suffering in modern art, is the painting below titled ‘The Scream’.

the scream edvard munch Creativity is turning suffering into creative inspiration

‘The Scream’ by Edvard Munch (1893) Oil, tempera, and pastel on cardboard. 91 cm × 73.5 cm National Gallery, Oslo, Norway

Munch was a true leader of the avante-garde art scene. He approached life differently

But as the artist grew older, Edvard Munch felt insanity slowly encroaching and infecting his mind

His personal suffering came in a propensity towards madness

Edvard Munch experienced painfully terrifying nightmares and evil visions of the macabre, which significantly influenced his original paintings.

He suffered a mental breakdown when the anxiety and hallucinations became overwhelmingly intense.

Point 1. The creative process of producing art has the potential power to heal mental and emotion problems.

Creativity is turning dark painful nights, into bright beautiful days, full of creative inspiration.

Moonlight over The Opera House 1024x763 Creativity is turning suffering into creative inspiration

‘Moonlight over The Opera House’ by Simon Brushfield (2005) Oil & Acrylic on Canvas 1m x 1m (Sold: Private Acquisition)

But it takes time. Creativity is all about perseverance and courage to face the pain, confront the core issues and then move forward with greater understanding.

When someone faces suffering and deals successfully with personal pain, their confidence and creativity flourishes

Like Edvard Munch, after psychiatric therapy, his mental suffering began to dissipate and his original paintings returned to a positive direction.

Creativity is often the transfer or joining of two extremes in life

This post shows how to turn personal pain into creative inspiration, just like the giants of modern art, such as Edvard Munch, Vincent Van Gogh and Paul Gaughin.

Point 2. Suffering helps creative people develop wisdom, strength and perseverance.

Confucius, the famous Chinese philosopher, once said there are 3 main methods by which people learn wisdom.

1. By reflection – which is the noblest
2. By imitation – which is the easiest
3. By experience – which is the most bitter

All the major religions have much to say about human suffering.

Most draw the conclusion that suffering is an inescapable fact of life

However, if handled correctly, the rewards are great

In fact, the Bible states that human beings are destined to suffer

But here’s the up side…

Point 3. Sadness has a refining influence upon us.

Beautiful Day painting by Simon Brushfield 841x1024 Creativity is turning suffering into creative inspiration

‘Bright Beautiful Day’ by Simon Brushfield (2002) Acrylic on board. 100cm x 80cm (Sold: Private acquisition)

Point 4. After a time of incubation, personal suffering can result in liberty and a passionate outburst of creative self-expression.

But we need to suffer wisely – then it becomes an empowering experience. Helping us to move forward, rather than wallowing in grief and self-pity forever.

Many great artists experience bouts of debilitating depression and melancholia like Vincent Van Gogh.

Also, the influential French artist, Paul Gaugin (1848–1903) at one point attempted suicide, due to suffering from severe bouts of hopelessness and despair.

Point 5. A wonderful truth about the creative spirit – it can flourish despite adversity.

Creativity is often born from personal pain and can be a powerful, emotionally rich form of self-expression.

The process of working through issues to express suffering succinctly is an invaluable healing experience for artists and creative people.

Many great masterpieces in the history of art, come from the artist’s experience of suffering

Creativity is all about communicating to an audience that can easily relate to an idea, in this case suffering

“Deep Confusion” by Simon Brushfield (2001) Acrylic on Canvas 50cm x 40cm Unframed $850

Michelangelo (1475–1564) also struggled with depression and serious mental illness. In fact the effects of his mental disturbance is evidenced in many of his original paintings.

Here’s what psychologists have discovered about finding relief from non-physical pain…

Point 6. Helping other people, who might be suffering more, brings miraculous healing and rejuvenation to the spirit.

Sensitive creative people need a successful strategy for dealing with suffering in their lives. Otherwise, the pain can become overwhelming.

The great modern artist Paul Cezanne once said, “A work of art which did not begin in emotion is not art”.

The famous Swiss psychoanalyst Carl Jung, taught about humanities collective unconscious. He proclaimed that tapping into the unconscious adds to the richness and character of a person’s creative output.

Therefore, people understand an archetypal storyline more easily because it’s common to all of humanity. Many successful movies are developed upon this premise, because it enhances the power of a creative message.

Most people understand and have experienced before the painful feelings associated with human suffering.

Final Point: Thankfully creative people are not alone, we’re working through the difficulties of life together.

© Copyright Simon Brushfield – Creativity is turning suffering into creative inspiration