Cecil’s Painting from the Heart

Challenge for the day

Every morning after giving morning care to my ninety-five year old aunt,


I look around our room.

It’s full of energy.

My paints . . .  brushes.

Paintings under the table . . . at the window

. . . and my dear aunt in her bed . . .

watching her hand massaging her contracted legs,

which I know for sure causes her a lot of pain.

I look at her eyes gazing on the ceiling.

And while I’m looking at her,

a question arises inside me

. . . is this LIFE?”

. . . yes, this is LIFE.”

My art adds   B E A U T Y   and  C O L O R

in her day-to-day life here on earth.

There is a connection and appreciation.

And the best reward is to see that  S M I L E 

on her delicate face.




Well stated because the very essence is true.

Painting is one way of completing my day.

The fire in me burns continuously.

It must soar.

I have to follow the dictates of my very being.

Once the paint touches the canvas, that’s it.


Until I reach the climax.

My eyes satisfying the subtleness, the warmth, the vividness, the rhythm of the painting…

It is profound.

ART  is EMOTION . . .


My art is intense,



and spontaneous.

It gives me a sudden surprise  . . . 

a feeling hard to explain.

All of this effort is because of the


that immerse in my inner being.

~ ~ ~

Celia Flor P. Tan was born in the community of Mayha, in the municipality of Odiongan, in the province of Romblon, in the Philippines.  She calls Sweden home, where she is a single mom to her four children and grandmother to her five grandchildren.

Cecil’s nursing profession led her to travel to Libya where she met the Swedish  father of her kids.  The relationship lasted for 13 years; a number she considers unlucky, and the relationship her worst  nightmare.  This led her to a deep depression and self-destructiveness until one day,  she found herself strictly guarded within the four white walls of a psychiatric  hospital in Sweden.  She spent hours every day in seclusion inside the hospital’s hobby room until the nurse picked her up and put her to bed.  Her art, her lifeline, started there.

Since Cecil paints from her heart, she picks any medium  that inspires her that day.  Though she is self-taught and excels in Abstraction, especially in Fluid Acrylic Painting, she dreams of starting from the basics.  She is currently challenging herself with Realism, still life, and oil pastel.

Cecil’s advice:

“In art . . . we only need practice, practice and more practice.  Believe in yourself.  Embrace your work.  There is no mistake in art.  Follow your heart.  Attend workshops, watch youtube videos.  Search, research.  Experiment.  Go out of your comfort zone.  Fight your fears.  Be passionate.  Most of all, see to it that you are having fun.  Lastly, express gratitude often.  In life we live only temporarily in this world.  We don’t really know when or if we wake up.  Appreciate life and the people around you more.  Also, share your talent.  It is a gift.  And Sharing=LOVE.”

You can see more of Celia P. Tan’s work at




~ ~ ~

Text, photograph and paintings by Celia P. Tan.

Layout by V.L.

Artist biography by Celia P. Tan and VL.

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