Recently I painted a mural on the wall leading up the stairway, in my house. I am not a painter
by any means. So I did what any modern woman would do, and I goggled “perspective”. While
not a trained painter, I have enough artistic training to know, in order to have depth in your
piece, perspective must be employed.
I began to review what I had found concerning perspective and vanishing points. For those of
you who are unfamiliar with vanishing points, it is the point in your drawing /painting where it
all “comes together” in the distance, lending depth to the work. Things closer to you have more
detail and are bigger, conversely things farther away are smaller and have less detail.
This was mostly review, until I came upon an example of a picture where the vanishing point
was outside the area being painted! This was something I not only didn’t remember, but began to
tickle my brain.
It got me thinking……. thinking about perspective in another way. I began to notice what a huge
impact perspective has on how any situation is taken in and processed on a daily basis. Just as it
does when viewing a painting.
Without perspective a work of art can be reminiscent of a grade school drawing ,feeling flat and
one dimensional. With perspective, you can be drawn in, finding yourself present in the work,
and everywhere in between. The things closest to you are huge and infinitely detailed and
knowable , while those farthest away are vague and shadow-like.
As I go about my daily routine how does this idea of perspective present itself? I toyed with the
idea of being so close perspective would be impossible, and the world becomes a flat one
I began to mentally back up and see how moving away might change things for me.
This brought me to the concept of mindfulness and witness consciousness. Witness
consciousness or mindfulness is a place of being able to observe yourself without judgement or
the need or desire to change what you see.
This thought was aroused in me in part as a result of my role as a witness in a Phoenix Rising
Yoga Therapy session and in my daily meditation practice. From the place of witness, vision and
scope becomes free from attachment to outcomes. Here fear and judgement lose power, scope
I then began to ponder the concept of a vanishing point that is off the page, so to speak, outside
the scope and visual of the work of art or situation. I let the idea marinate.
If I view the vanishing point as the focal point in a painting or situation, and this point doesn’t
exist inside my scope, do I miss the point? (pardon the pun). How much is my understanding and
ability to see is related to where my perspective is coming from, on the page, and in my life?
In my role as a Phoenix Rising Practitioner, being a witness and a loving presence for my
clients, provides safety and a spaciousness for their experience to happen the way it works for
them. As a witness to myself, I can then see the vanishing point outside the situation, off the
page, and provide space for myself to decide how I wish to interact with it.
Perspective, on and off the page, provides choice. How do I want to be with this picture, in my
life or in the painting. What does it have to show me, teach me?