What is meditation? It can be described in different ways but in general we could say that it is the use of the intellect in states of consciousness other than “standard waking consciousness”.

Okay, lets begin by defining “standard waking consciousness”. Conscious states are at least measurable as correlates of brain wave patterns as defined by the electroencephalograph or EEG. We have four levels of consciousness: beta(waking or aware of the world), alpha(dreaming or aware of inner vistas as affected by the outer world), theta(deep dreaming or aware of only the inner world), delta(unconscious or unaware).

When we begin airbrushing we use skills developed in the same way that an athlete develops skills, not merely hand to eye coordination in the way a pencil artist draws, but a complex rhythm of full body motion that is more like a slam dunk, free throw, curve ball, home run, serve, bulls eye, or any of the goals or finish lines we use to score in a sport. The particles of paint coming out of that airbrush hit the t-shirt where they do because the airbrush is at a certain angle, a certain distance, and releasing a certain amount of air pressure. How are these three necessities coordinated?

Examine a strip of video camera film showing a football player kicking a field goal and you will find a single still shot or frame where the foot hits the ball and the same three components are there, the certain angle, the certain distance, and the certain pressure. Look at the coordination required to achieve those three requirements, the balance, timing, grace, attitude, and compare that to the total absence of these in the pencil artist or brush painter or even craftsmen like potters and sculptors. The exact opposite of the so called “fine” artist is the airbrush artist whose mastery can be judged as much or more by his posture, speed, grace, and timing, as much as by the finished product. Exactly like an athlete!

It is this quality of airbrushing that makes it meditation, because the master airbrush artist must enter the “zone” the way an athlete or martial artist does, that altered state of consciousness. This is also how “zen” art is different than western art .The zen monks also say, “the martial artists come to us we don’t go to them”. Its the state of mind that is the necessity, and that is also why athletes train in visualization and meditation altering their state of consciousness. To be an airbrush artist requires a discipline that artists in general are not familiar with, and a creativity that is absent from sport. That should be the beginning of your airbrush meditation.