Tuesday, November 3, 2009
Leonard Cohen was not known in South Africa and I was only recently introduced to his music by my 19 year old daughter who shares my love of listening to Leonard sing. Amy and I are going to the concert together.
My favorite Cohen quote is:
"Ring the bells that can still ring.
Forget the perfect offering.
There's a crack in everything,
that's how the light gets in."
My favorite song is "Dance me to the End of Love"
And this is Leonard in 1970 at a Woodstock style concert on the Isle of Wight. It is amazing that 39 years later, at the age of 75 he is still performing!
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
This is my favorite photo - the Studio as seen from the labyrinth!
Friday, October 16, 2009
I attended a weekend workshop with Lynn Robinson on Intuition which was a very practical class. Lynn is the author of Divine Intuition, Trust Your Gut, and has a new book called Listen coming out in December. We are all more intuitive than we give ourselves credit for! As Lynn says: "When you listen to the whispers of your soul and take small steps forward, a new dream emerges. You have access to the gift of divine intuition to guide you to the fulfillment of that dream. Each time you ask for guidance and act on the wisdom you receive, you align your mind with the mind of God; you tap into a stream of conscious guidance that is divine intuition."
I then attended a seven day intensive "Insight and Opening" workshop facilitated by Jack Kornfield and Dr. Stanislav Grof. The focus of this workshop was on meditation and breathwork. This workshop has made me more aware of the importance of the breath in everything we do and how the breath connects us to greater consciousness.
I think it takes time for new learning to settle into one's body and so I am allowing myself to slowly process all that I learnt.
Sunday, September 27, 2009
I've been making a series of cards with my photographs of Mallard Island and quotes by "Ober" to donate to the Oberholtzer Foundation as a small way to show my gratitude for the opportunity to spend time on Mallard Island. This is one of the cards. I took this photo early one morning as the sun was rising over the water. I hope I get to spend more time there. You really can live deep surrounded by trees and water.
Friday, September 25, 2009
life is a garden,
not a road
we enter and exit
through the same gate
where we go matters less
than what we notice.
The poem is attributed to Bokonon from "The Lost Book".
As a photographer noticing things has become a practice that I strive to incorporate in everything I do and so this poem struck a cord with me.
And today, as I slowly walked my labyrinth, which is another of my daily practices, I noticed that I entered and exited the labyrinth through the same entrance. I had always thought of the labyrinth as a metaphor for the journey of life and this poem made me see this more clearly. Life is made up of cycles and being present to notice my life is more important than rushing through it - as Henry Canby says "Live deep instead of fast". But how to get all those exciting creative projects done before my time is up? I wish I knew how to balance these two aspects of my life - I want them both!
Recently there was an article on Labyrinths in Charlotte Woman magazine's August edition. There is an interview with me on pages 24 and 25.
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
This need was confirmed this past week when I spent a week on Mallard Island in Rainy Lake, Minnesota. I realized just how much I love being surrounded by water and how much easier it was to connect to my essence without the phone ringing, emails to reply to and the constant noise of the world revolving around me.
The island is the legacy of Ernest Oberholzer, one of the original pioneers of saving the wilderness areas of our nation. "Ober" as he is fondly known, said it perfectly: "Man was made for broad scenes and tall shadows. He craves a noble background. Cramp him, and he revolves in an ever narrowing circle, until finally he doubts his own destiny. The song goes out of his heart."
This week was a gift to my soul and a reminder to spend more time surrounded by nature.
"There is a way that nature speaks, that land speaks. Most of the time we are simply not patient enough, quiet enough, to pay attention to the story."
But I think I'll also be making time to record my journey again. It helps me to see more clearly.
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Good question! First, I've learned not to expect the dream to be a linear process. My process was all over the place. An illustration here, a quote there, a splurge of writing now and then, another illustration, a trip to Costa Rica, a few losses, a few triumphs, another quote, a buffet in Las Vegas, another splurge of writing.. you know, like that.
Making sure I kept everything so I could find it when it was time to compile the book was important. It was also important for the project to be fun.. something I might do for myself and my friends even if it didn't get published. It is so satisfying watching it grow and letting go of any kind of expectation of how it's supposed to look.
Having a deadline for both my books helped a lot. Working on other projects as well as continuing to compile ideas kept me going on one project for a number of years because it was not my only focus.
How do you protect your own creative time. I find it hard to say no to requests when I don’t have any other commitments on my calendar except those to myself and my creative projects.
Give your creative time a promotion and a raise– make it as important as requests from others. It's sacred and necessary. Embody the tenacious personality of a rebellious, self-determined artist who is adamant about protecting her creative time even if it means saying no to a bunch of people who are unhappy that you did. It's part of your license and requirements as an artist to do this. It also good role-modeling for others.
Or mark your creative time on your calendar as if it were a class and make it a class with yourself. I mark down my creative time and "ruthlessly protect" it. Sometimes I make a time with a buddy so both of us are working in our separate spaces at the same time. That gives that time more importance, structure and likely follow-through. I invented a Bodyguard to go with the nine modern day Muses in my first book in order to summon up our protective powers. If we are creative, engaging in our creativity is vital to our optimal functioning in all areas of our life.
Make it a fun habit. Show up almost everyday even if it's just for 5 minutes. Remember how good it felt when you engaged in your creativity before. Give yourself permission to be imperfect.
How can we find more hours in the day to create as well as keep up with the admin involved in teaching, putting your work in exhibitions and shops!
It's a balancing act for sure, but in each moment, ask your intuition what would make sense. We often know more than we give ourselves credit for.
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Friday, February 13, 2009
Kerry made the most wonderful Spills card in class. Have a look at Spills on Kerry's blog.
These Muses are based on Jill Badonsky's book "The Nine Modern Day Muses (and a Bodyguard), and I will be interviewing Jill about the creative process and posting the interview on my blog next week. Her new book "The Awe-Manac: A Daily Dose of Wonder" is also an inspiration.
The other is an exhibition at Mint Hill Arts which opened this evening to a great crowd. I'll be gallery sitting on Thursday and will take some photos then.
Sunday, January 18, 2009
If you are interested in learning more about labyrinths here are some interesting websites:
101 Ways to Use a Labyrinth
History of Labyrinths
Saturday, January 17, 2009
I'm excited to report that Jill Badonsky , the author of The Nine Day Modern Muses (and a Bodyguard) is going to visit my blog in February and I get to ask her five questions regarding the creative process - so if you have any questions you'd like to ask just let me know and I'll pass them on.
What we are familiar with we cease to see."
Friday, January 16, 2009
For the last two years Louie has been taking a photo a day and posting them to her blog! I tried this once and couldn't even do it for a month, so I am in awe of this feat.
I am so grateful for the wonderful art community that I have found on the internet!
I gather inspiration from many people I have never met, such as this photo-a-day for a month project.
Monday, January 12, 2009
Sunday, January 11, 2009
Jill has recently written a new book called "The Awe-Manac: A Daily Dose of Wonder" which sits next to my bed for daily inspiration. Jill offered a free teleconference call this week which I dialled into. I am so glad I did. I loved the exercises Jill gave us, especially one where we took the beginning of a song title and finished it with our own words (the words Jill gave us were "Echoes of ......."). My new titles will make perfect names for my photographs and the timing was just right as I am putting together a body of work for a photography exhibition in February.
Monday, January 5, 2009
To celebrate the completion of my labyrinth I had two days of Open Studio to share my labyrinth with my friends.
There are layers upon layers of meaning in the ancient tool of the labyrinth. But the best way to learn about the labyrinth is to walk one.
So that is one of the pleasures I have - walking the labyrinth whenever I feel called to do so (especially when the weather is beautiful - like today).
Thanks to my yoga teacher, Mohit, for taking this photograph. I was too busy with all the guests and I'm grateful to have these visual reminders.