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I came across something the other day in my mom's "remem'ry drawer" that was both endearingly funny and insightful. This particular drawer that most mothers have somewhere in their houses is where they place things to "remem'ry" about their children's lives. At least, that's what my siblings and I (there are 6 of us) named this drawer when we were much younger - a combination of remember and memory - which was actually located in the bottom of my dad's dresser.

This special drawer holds report cards - good and bad alike - sweet and tender notes written in crayon for Mother's Day or birthdays, shockingly bad grade school photos that only a mother could love, and other such charming mementos of a son or daughter's childhood to cherish from time to time. The funny and insightful object I mentioned earlier was my signature when I was about 12 written in neat cursive with the letter "F" in Flynn in the traditional boat-with-a-cap-on-it style and it read: "Lizanne Flynn, The Great Artist". I think I was typical in my desires at that point in my life as is every other girl - to have a horse and be an artist. Our young feminine fantasies are the stuff of gossamer and lace and gifts of roses from adoring fans who marvel at both our talent and the product of that talent, be in it art or horseback-riding.

I've dabbled in many forms of creativity over the years - watercolor painting, crocheting (I still do this), jewelry-making (I still do that) to name a few. Others, such as pottery and painting with acrylics or oils I've yet to attempt - maybe someday. They all pale in comparison to the richness of color, complexity of medium, and daunting challenge of completely finishing a piece that is the essence of the art of animal communication. You see, energy is my medium and specifically the energy created by both human and non-human animals, sentient beings alike, complete with spiritual lives and lessons to be learned together. The work of art co-created and facilitated by an animal communicator has a life-long ripple effect for both animal and guardian as it is gilded with love and compassion for self and the other at the same time.

Attention to technique is sometimes involved at the beginning of an art project for instance, by using the correct mixture of clay and water as in pottery. There might be the preparation of the canvas with water or other substances. There's the selection of colors and paintbrushes, or yarn and hook or needle. Last but not least is, of course, subject matter. "What is to be created, what meaning will it have and how do I want it to be interpreted? What sort of emotion do I want my visual piece of creation to call forth from the observer? Am I trying to call attention to a cultural issue within our society or do I just want to create a picture of fall because it's my favorite season?" Yes, the scope is that broad and oftentimes just as formidable. Still, the creative voice within the artist perseveres and knows no rest until it is released from within and outwardly shared.

Once the tools are assembled the creative flame sparks and catches fire. At first the flames are small and low in number needing fuel from within the individual to continue burning. It is an assortment of talents and skills that are called forth perhaps unconsciously by the artist to provide the very breath the fire craves. These things lie dormant within an "other" space existing in all of us that is capable of such great feats of creativity it would be a shame not to visit it from time to time if only to reveal to ourselves our deep and divine potential. It is within this "other" space that an animal communicator works in creating their particular piece of art consisting of the interpretation of pictures, words, and feelings from non-human sentient beings, the animals.

I start with a blank canvas although to the animal's guardian who is asking for my help it appears much differently. It's fairly common for the unwelcome behavior issues of the animal (the majority of an animal communicator's work) to resemble a mixture of sharp, jagged edges and discordant colors that snarl and hiss with their disruptive nature in the lives of both human and non-human animals. Reframing of the picture's contents is necessary so that balance and harmony can once again reign supreme in their lives. In order to accomplish this goal a separate piece of artwork is created that provides a fresh perspective for all involved that can be cherished for its depth of emotion and simplicity (usually) of issue resolution. They'll hang side by side as a testament to the heart-centered relationship between human and non-human animal, both pictures necessary to keep the partnership focused on the progress made together.

My own attention to technique in this art form involves explaining the process to the human and ensuring that they understand the journey they are about to undertake with their animal companion may be, at times, uncomfortable. There may be delicate issues brought forth by the non-human animal which the human animal may not like to see. Securing permission from the guardian both as to the process and access to their energy along with their companion animal's energy is vitally important as they are the true creators of the finished project. Additionally, I ask for verification from the guardian that there was a recent vet visit to rule out any medical issues such as infection that may masquerade as emotional ones.

Technique complete, I can begin preparation of the canvas starting with a series of questions from the human that are designed to draw forth from the animal the answers the human so desperately seeks. "Why are you not using the litterbox? Why do you bark so much when the doorbell rings? Why are you afraid of the stairs?" These are just some of the questions that the animal's guardian may propose to begin the communication session. Once I hear the questions and talk with the guardian I start to get a tingling sense, a knowing if you will, of the dynamic between human and non-human animal that tells me where I'm going to add or subtract questions during the session. This occurs much in the same way a painter adds or subtracts colors or the way a weaver changes colors on the loom that affects the whole of the artwork. Here I follow the animal's lead as they best know what needs to be revealed to the human so that they can work productively together both during and after the session. Animals are, in fact, far more intuitive than humans given that they still depend on their intuition for well-being in situations where they lack human language skills - in other words, their daily existence in the human world.

It is at this point that my specific type of artwork begins to draw in the energy of both the human and non-human animal as each plays a role in co-creating the finished piece between them. I begin to unfold the wrinkles in the fabric of energy between animal and guardian so that I can access both human and non-human thoughts, emotions and higher selves. The interpretation of the animal communication artwork has specific and, at times, very personal meaning to both animal and guardian. There will be lessons that are part of the pact they each (perhaps unknowingly) signed when they entered each other's lives that comprise the ultimate subject matter of the artwork. During this process I need to be alert yet relaxed, questioning yet having no expectations so that I can move in concert with the images, words and feelings that flood my being. I need to trust that all will be revealed as necessary which has gotten much easier with time. Truly, this is a living piece of art as in the best of situations the energy will change between human and non-human animal. Words fail to describe what it is like to witness the absolutely spectacular healing happening at the soul level for both human and non-human animal when an energy shift occurs.

The information coming from the animal is from both their current life-form selves and their higher selves. The communication is usually very direct and honest which sometimes shocks the guardian into silence or perhaps tears. There's often laughter mixed in with the tears as animal's directness can also be quite funny and endearing to the guardian. It is never without compassion for the human and firmly gentle requests for a change in behavior - on the human's part - that will allow the companion animal to return to their intrinsic state of wellness and harmony. Perhaps this is the most surprising element of all to those not familiar with animal communication. It is the human whose choices within the human-animal relationship have - a good majority of the time - caused the animal to mirror back those choices in their own unique way. There's no cause for guilt at this juncture - just a humble and heart-centered agreement to change what can be changed and accommodation for what cannot be changed. Little, however, can't actually be changed - it's all a matter of perception.

In the end the masterpiece, with the barely dry paint or still-kiln-warm brilliant glaze, is held up for both human and non-human animal to view. I've heard gasps of delight, again co-mingled with tears, at the depth of honesty, trust and love that was woven into a very unique piece of art belonging only to this particular match of human and non-human animal. The humans are often stunned by their participation in the co-creation process and I see images of the preferred future for the pair - from the animal's higher self - that sometimes makes me blissfully happy for them. The animals are always prompt and sincere in their expressions of gratitude for the process - a good reminder to humans, gentle reader, that being nice matters in the world today.

I learn something every single time I am honored to be part of an animal communication session. Without fail I am imperceptibly changed by my energetic interaction in a sacred "other" space alongside two other sentient beings. Each time I pledge to continue from a deep creative place my particular form of art - that of animal communicator - in order to reveal the divine possibilities of love. This, in the end, is all that really matters.