You know how it was like to be different and wishing you could belong.
You know the pressure to fit into to society's standards.
You had felt the inner conflict between getting people's approval and living your own life.
You have lived and experienced enough. You are ready to forget about people pleasing.
You like and appreciate yourself more.
You have created a life that shines with your personality, surrounded by beauty and joy.
As your appreciation of yourself deepens, you enjoy collecting art that celebrates your commitment to self love. ￼
Hello, I am Maria, and my art is inspired by years of struggling to love myself.
It is only through painting flowers and plants that I am learning to see in a new light.
I find awe and inspiration in the uniqueness and strength of plants that thrive and flourish, as fully as possible, without shame for being different.
You are reminded of the lovely quirks that make you who you are, when you admire the unique shapes and colors in a bouquet - each flower has a special role in creating a greater, lovelier whole.
You feel comfort in knowing you are not alone when you see the courage of plants to live fearlessly, even when we do not approve of them.
Hydrangea are much rounder and fuller than most flowers, and they thrive without worrying about being different. When you are no longer afraid of being odd, you feel light and free to be yourself!
When you are surrounded by art that is inspired by joy and truth, art that is much more than pretty pictures, you connect with your own joy and strengthen your immunity to outside pressures.
A quiet kid who loved to draw
I was a daydreamer who loved to draw in the margins of every worksheet. Teachers did not approve so I had to hide tiny pencils in my palm to avoid getting caught drawing.
Out of place as an introvert
I attended an art high school where I loved spending time alone making art, but felt pressure to be more social just like everyone else.
Ashamed of the way I look
When I compared myself to peers with long slim legs and flawless skin, I became self-consious about my body.
Desperate to attain these beauty standards, I spent lunch times in the washroom so no one would notice I was not eating.
Envy towards those who seemed perfect
The one reliable outlet for my feelings was art class in high school.
Here was my interpretation of a "Seven Deadly Sin", a self-portrait expressing my Envy of those who were naturally pretty and outgoing, and my frustration at not being like them.
Another painting I did about me feeling ugly and different from others...￼ ￼
Finally got approval but felt empty
After college, I finally got thin enough to get compliments, but I felt empty and numb inside.
I was so used to pleasing others that I had no opinion of what to do with my life. I drifted into a mind-numbing factory job. I was too self-conscious to create art.
How plants taught me to love myself and be myself
During those dark times, I often walked in nature to quiet my mind. Looking at all the different plants, I wondered if dandelions wished to be like roses? Did hydrangea ever feel fat?
No, dandelions continued to thrive even when we say they are no good. Hydrangea were proud to be themselves.
We were all perfect, each of us a unique hue in nature's rainbow.
Slowly, I realized I was lovable exactly as I was, that I could find courage to choose my own life's path.
I realized what made me passionate and alive was that little girl inside of me who loved to draw and paint.
Today I am thankful to my art collectors who allow me to lift their spirits and inspire them with my paintings. Let me bring you more inspiration to live fully and love yourself as you are!