Sometimes when you've had a long day and morale's been a bit low, it's good to spend some time doing something which you know will relax you. I've been on a mindfulness course recently through work and it dawned on me that I already practice mindfulness in the things I love to do - art for me is a form of mindfulness and walking in nature is another. You lose track of time, and minutes turn into hours and you find that you escape the current of thoughts, feelings and worries that can overwhelm you at times. If I had a choice between painting nature and being out there experiencing it then I would always choose the latter - the experiences mean more to me than painting them but I can then sort of relive those experiences when I paint!
I had a bit of painting therapy this evening painting these garden birds. I very rarely plan what I paint and don't really put that much thought into it preferring to just go with the flow and see what happens which I suppose is quite a mindful way of painting. I don't strive to become better at it I just paint because I love the way it makes me feel.