Tuesday, August 25, 2009

More about layers...

So I've been giving the whole layer idea a bit more thought and couldn't help but notice that when I practice yoga or sit for mediation that it's all about peeling the layers back to expose who/what is really there, or in other words, who I am at my core. It comes slowly, but if you practice long enough with the right intention, glimpses of that self are made available. For me (so far since I've just started!) the creating or art process requires the same quiet patience. It's the application of layers rather than the removal, but each layer is meaningful, purposeful and has something to teach me.
My sketch forms the first of many layers to come, I suspect, and my inspiration is the choreographer, Sonya Tayeh, from "So You Think You Can Dance." She is brave, bold and a creative force! We should all move from such a place!

Monday, August 24, 2009

It's all in the layers...

This weekend I had an ah-ha moment that was several months in the making. Funny what a new haircut and a couple of collage techniques can do for you! At any rate, I had been religiously complaining about my hair to whoever would listen, comparing it to—depending on the day and the weather--a brown football helmet or the episode of “Friends” where Monica’s hair keeps growing bigger and frizzier in the humid air. So, Friday night I broke down let my hairdresser put layers in my hair, something I had been avoiding, foolishly thinking that the layers would make my hair look shorter. Instead it seems bouncier, which makes me feel lighter overall—it makes you feel a bit like jumping actually, or at the very least bobbing up and down a bit! As an added bonus, my face doesn’t look like it’s being pulled down by the weight of a big head of hair! Woo-hoo!
Part two of my ah-ha moment knocked on my noggin because I spent some time working with the Kelly Rae Roberts book, “Taking Flight,” and merging her ideas with collage techniques I have been practicing. Between the hair and art practice, I believe that I’m finally getting the concept and the importance of layering. With it you have depth and interest, without it the piece seems kind of flat disjointed, and lacking, like it has no cohesiveness to it. I can see the difference between two pieces I’m posting today…I have a long way to go, but I’m so grateful that I’ve started.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Making A Move...

Half or maybe three-quarters of the battle when starting something new is just summoning up the courage and a little bit of faith to actually take the first step-to dip that brush into a bit of paint, or to draw your legs upward into a headstand. The other portion of the battle lies in not worrying what the final painting looks like or if you take a tumble rather than hold that perfect headstand. My point is that it’s easy to freeze, easy to let your fear or pride soil or stifle the mystery that might unfold from within you if you would just take the leap and explore the many facets of your inner self.

My “move” this week was trying an art journal technique (pictured here) that I watched on You Tube by the lovely Tam at Willowing.org. I had my hand at a bit of shading and while I’m pleased as punch to be playing in paint, I’m looking forward to practicing what I’ve learned—the great Yogi, Pattabhi Jois always said, “practice and all is coming.” His words are a life lesson on and off the yoga mat. Practice. Just focus on the practice without worrying about the outcome. Practice, it’s the heart of movement.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

The Full Sturgeon Moon

Artist Jamie Ridler hosts a full moon dreamboard challenge on her website which I excitedly decided to participate in this month. The idea is to create a dreamboard or a mini vision board each month at the full moon in order to focus in on your dreams and take steps to bring those dreams into your life. Jamie’s site is a delight and you should check it out at www.Jamieridlerstudios.ca. I really enjoy spending time there!
Anyway…I’m obviously a few days late, according to the full moon, but I really wanted to give some thought to what was important and relevant for me right now and also warranted the effort necessary to create those things/qualities in my life. Also, because I’m just starting to explore art, I thought I would paint something instead of putting together a collage of yoga, art and writing photos. I decided upon the theme of “Try Peace.” I kept it simple, because to me peace is simplicity. I included the moon overhead, used soft colors to represent soft sounds-- like the cooing of the doves--and then added the message to “be silent” so I wouldn’t forget! So, this month I am going to “try peace.” Shhhhhhh!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Full Moon Metamorphosis

It’s that time again! Another moon ripe with possibility glows full in our night sky. Like a new year, a birthday, or any rite of passage really, the cycles of the moon can prime us for growth and change. Lately I have been using the rhythm of the moon to help me organize my life—for lack of a better way to put it—and to focus in on my creative dreams and aspirations. I find it much easier to navigate ideas and goals when they are broken into bite-size pieces, so the fact that each year we are given 13 moons makes it very convenient for me. I have 13 opportunities to reflect and refocus, 13 chances to redirect my energy, and 13 occasions to feel grateful for what I already have! What a lovely gift!

Monday, August 3, 2009

The Magic Closet

In their first apartment together, my brother and sister-in-law had what they referred to as a magic closet; it was big, deep and lined with shelves from floor to ceiling. It was magical because inevitably when you put something in it and closed the door that item disappeared and in its place you inexplicably found something you hadn’t seen in, well, years. When they moved, I was in charge of packing up that closet and I was sure that games and appliances were materializing out of nowhere…it seemed as if for every box I filled more things awaited me on those shelves.

That closet always intrigued me, and lately I have been asking myself, when we meditate or simply sit quietly with our thoughts, what is it that we create when we go inside, when we really listen? Our minds are similar to the magic closet in that we often times store away ideas, feelings and memories and pull out things we didn’t know existed within us, which can be both exciting and disconcerting. Whether we recognize it right away or not, the excavation is almost always an opportunity for growth. Take time to sit down with yourself every day. You may be surprised at what you find way back in your internal corners! Explore, experiment, create!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Sparking Creative Juices

Creativeeveryday.com is a site that I visit with regularity. Leah Piken Kolidas hosts a blog that focuses on sparking creative juices and what I find so interesting is that she selects a monthly artistic theme for her readers to ponder and then translate into their own form of art. In July the theme was "self" and the mixed media piece I'm posting (at least I hope I am!) is my first attempt at any kind of art and is my interpretation of "self." It's still a work in progress, but I have been having a REALLY good time with it!

The theme for August, I believe, is "move." I feel some yoga inspired art coming on!
I'm starting a new book today. It's called, "The Life Organizer: A Woman's Guide to a Mindful Year" by Jennifer Louden. It seems like an appropriate place for me to start! I haven't made up my mind on the others for this month (one art focused and one focused on yoga) but will by the end of the day. Stay tuned! I'm also looking forward to taking a class or two this month.
More to come...