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To Cultivate a Soft and Tender Place

by Emerald Barkley

To Cultivate a Soft and Tender Place By Emerald Barkley

To Cultivate a Soft and Tender place is an original watercolor skull painting by Emerald Barkley about the need to be radically kind to ourselves.

In the last few years, I have spent a lot of time thinking about space. The space in my home for instance: How do I want to feel when I am home? What can I do, aesthetically and functionally, to feel like this is a good space where I can be safe, comfortable, and inspired?

This got me to thinking about community, particularly: How can I do the same thing with the people that I love? How can I not only communicate love, generosity, and safety in community spaces that I share, but as a person within that community? What do I need to build trust and beauty?

The kicker for me is turning that thinking inward: What can I do to build trust and beauty in myself? I seem to default to an anxious state full of catastrophic narratives and the lonely mountain of Never Good Enough. It’s a false mountain, built on 4am dread and the smoke of anxious narratives.

And I don’t need it. Neither do you.

This piece is about slowly, gently reclaiming that space and building a garden. Of learning how to tell yourself that it is going to be fine, that you are good at things, and you are even good at hard things. To cultivate radical softness in your mind and in your body, and to remember that you, too, are a lush and beautiful thing.

This piece is a study for a larger work.

To Cultivate a Soft and Tender Place is a 10″ x 12.5″ original watercolor skull painting on Arches hot-pressed paper.
This piece will ship unframed.


More original watercolor paintings on EDO:

Quiet: https://everydayoriginal.com/product/quiet-2/
These Slow Moments, They Writhe: https://everydayoriginal.com/product/these-slow-moments-they-writhe/
These Teeth That Gnash: https://everydayoriginal.com/product/these-teeth-that-gnash/

Other ways to collect my watercolor skull work:

Originals: https://www.emeraldbarkley.com/shop/original-artwork
Prints: https://www.emeraldbarkley.com/shop/prints
Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/emeraldbarkley

Stay in touch:
instagram: @emeraldbarkley
tiktok: @emeraldbarkley

$500 $500

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Emerald Barkley is a watercolor and mixed media artist from Northern California. Emerald uses a colorful palette and personal symbolism drawn from the natural world to create work about mindfulness, ego, and mental health.
They enjoy hiking and peach cobbler.