Friday, November 30, 2007
I like grids. There is something about the symmetry, and the repetition.
Just fun, using up bits of leftover projects, and printing disasters that ended up looking cool.
The first page that I have included any text. I liked how it looked, and I wanted to remember why I put these items down, or rather what they made me think of.
I feel that I am going through a major shift in my life. It is one of those times when the pattern of my life reveals another path. Sometimes the various things I have pursued in my life thus far seem so disjointed and totally without plan that I feel like a complete mess, and then things shift and I begin to see a pattern to all of these pursuits.
It is like a trail of bread crumbs through the woods, they begin to glow and I can see that there has been a direction to my life. Despite all of the times I have been afraid and insecure, and have stayed in jobs and other situations too long, thinking that I had to have money, or healthcare, or a relationship and if I took a step off the path in front of me I would be lost, the bread crumbs have showed up to lead me to the next thing.
Far too frequently I have gone trembling with fear and dreading the rug being pulled out from under me, but I have gone, and I have always been rewarded. It has taken me far too long to realize and trust that I am being led in the direction of my heart, and that it has been my heart lovingly leaving the bread crumbs for me to follow.
I am seeing the path diverge again, and I don't know where I am going yet, but I feel more trust than I have felt in a long time. I do have some ideas about where I might be going, but it is too soon to put it into words. Still in the planning and thinking and meditating stages. I think that the slump I was in all summer was a fallow time preparing me for change.
Making visual journals is helping, I don't have to use words, and it is a relief right now, I always over-analyze things. Now I just grab the color that appeals to me, and shapes and items that may reveal a pattern...of bread crumbs.
Thursday, November 22, 2007
I hope that you have a festive and warm Thanksgiving, I am thankful for my children, and how well they are adapting to adulthood. They are spending Thanksgiving with my parents in Portland, and we will be celebrating with my husband's family in South Seattle. I am thankful for my husband, who always supports me in any wild idea I come up with. I am constantly, for 29 years now, amazed at how lucky I have been. He is a gem.
I am thankful for my life, for the constantly unfolding surprise of discovery that it has been, and continues to be. I am thankful for my friends, some dating back to college, and many more recent. It is a true blessing to have so many friends in life.
What are you thankful for?
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
The page below is the one I did today. I feel like I am out of the flow, and need to get back into doing this daily. I have missed it, and I think that I will do several pages today, because I have more time, and I feel like it!
Yesterday, my daughter woke me at 6:30 and asked if I wanted to go to Snohomish. This is a November tradition for us. I started going for a wonderful Christmas bazaar they had on the first Saturday of November probably 20 years ago. When my daughter was about 10 or 12, she started to want to go with me and the friend I went with, and when the friend moved away, she and I started making it a tradition for just the two of us to go.
The bazaar faded away, and for several years we have just gone to shop in the town and have lunch. We get some Christmas shopping done, and have fun. Our favorite store is Joyworks, on the main street of town. She got several presents, and I got LARGE pillows covered in red and tan ticking for our couch, which is a futon with wooden arms, the pillows look great and make the arms comfortable, finally!
We had a wonderful time, and it didn't start to rain until we were almost home! Last year we were drenched all day! Below is a photo of my beautiful daughter by a weathered brick wall in Snohomish.
Sunday, November 11, 2007
I really love trees in all their manifestations, bare, in bud, in full leaf, the colors of fall. I have been at Fort Worden in all seasons, and have many photographs of trees there, and these were very beautiful to me.
The weekend was exhausting, but also fun. The three of us did MANY massages, and our pay was good, but by the end of Saturday, a thirteen hour day, we were so tired that we barely made it to our beds before we collapsed! We decided that since we are all pushing 60, that this would be our last year doing marathon massage.
It was a bittersweet decision, this was our third year and we had finally gotten all of the kinks out, everything ran very smoothly, and we were completely booked for the time we were there. We had a lot of fun together, and some very meaningful discussions about LIFE, but it was a mutual decision to quit. Plans have already been made for other getaways without work!
It may go without saying that I had no time or energy for working on the visual journal. I missed it, but will start up again tomorrow.
The final photo is a self-portrait!
Friday, November 9, 2007
These are my last three days of journaling. The last pic is a bit drab, like the weather today. And the mood of November, even though we still have trees in glorious color, it is getting closer to winter every day.
Today I am leaving for Port Townsend, for two days of work/fun. Two massage therapist friends and I will be giving massages to ladies attending a scrapbooking retreat at Fort Worden.
We work hard, but have a lot of fun, the ladies are great and hilarious, my friends and I have a weekend away, and I will pay for Play:the retreat with my proceeds!
Those who know me know that I love Port Townsend and Fort Worden. I feel happy just thinking about the drive over and back, in fact on the day we leave, M. and I will be eating a fabulous breakfast on Lawrence street, gallery hopping in PT, and hitting The Arts Mine in Port Hadlock.
I am taking my journal and my camera...
Have a good weekend!
Wednesday, November 7, 2007
I know from various therapists over the years that the same stories from one's life keep coming up, over and over. Each time a little more is healed, but so far that has all been with words--talking or writing. The visual journal, my version of morning pages, is a way to process things in a whole new way. I am not "thinking" about what I put on the page, but there is definitely something breaking open here.
Of course, now I am analyzing it with words, but what is happening with the visual journaling is not something that I can put in words. For me, this seems like a very positive step. I think that I am getting to another layer (of myself) that is non-verbal.
This has happened to me while receiving bodywork, emotions have been released that are very powerful, but have no words, those emotions have seemed pre-verbal.
What I sense with the journal pages is that the PROCESS of making them is coming from a non-verbal place, a place that I have always wished I could access, where I can just BE.
Obviously, words are important to me or I wouldn't be writing about this, but I am happy that I have found another place where I don't have to explain.
Does this make any sense??
Tuesday, November 6, 2007
The Physical Culture magazines are hilarious, expect to see journal pages and other things incorporating these. MJ and I had much hilarity reading the titles of the articles, so much so that we had to make a second trip to that store to find a couple for her. I loved the stuff we found, and this was after MJ showed us the "gifts" she brought from WW, exciting finds from cleaning out her mother's house. All will become fodder for the mill.
Saturday I went to Third Place Books in Lake Forest Park to meet with other ArtFestors. I did my visual journal there that day. We all bring things to work on, and just talk about our various projects. There were only 3 of us that day, but it was interesting and fun.
This was Monday's page, I ended up with a stencil, made by rubbing Portfolio pastel through a piece of paper lace. It will probably rub off, eventually, but it was fun. I want to do more stencils. I was surprised with the direction this page went, but decided to just go along with it, and I like it.
Today's page. I seem to have this linear thing going on. I have been coloring the backgrounds with Portfolio's, because it is easy, and I rub them with paper towel, to blend and sink the color in. With trusty glue stick, I just start sticking things down. I have lots of little ephemera packs from AF, and trades and I am digging into those now.
Saturday, November 3, 2007
This is my page for Nov. 2. It has made me amazingly happy to be doing this, I try to do my pages as soon as I get up, I really look forward to it.
One of my biggest problems, my whole life, is performance anxiety. I will put off doing things I know that I love (like making art) because I worry that it will not be good enough, or that I will mess it up and waste art supplies. I can already feel that this little exercise in visual journaling is going to cure me of that, or at the very least make it less prominent. Doing these slapdash pages has given me ideas for more complete things that I might work on in a bigger journal. This is a 5x7 book, and I have much larger books which tend to intimidate me.
I found out yesterday that I will be going to Play: the retreat at the end of January. It is hosted by Teesha and Tracy Moore, of ArtFest fame, and one of the primary things will be art journaling. I am VERY excited to be doing this, it will be a very small group, around 40, and most of the time will be to just play, and look at each other's art. This is my idea of heaven.
As far as Vein of Gold goes, I have decided to go through the book, do the morning pages, the visual journal, and the artist dates--and the WALKS, this is a very important part of the process--but I will probably not do each one of the various projects. There are some that speak to me more than others.
I am especially looking forward to making the dolls and the masks, which come later in the book.
If any one wants to join me in this pursuit, leave a comment and a link to your blog.
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Monday, July 30, 2007
I read the last Harry Potter, which I loved, and was sorry to have end. What an achievement! The world could certainly do with a few heros who are able to stand up for what is good over power and evil...
Speaking of power and evil, my husband and I just watched the documentary about the sexual abuse scandal in the Catholic Church called "Deliver Us From Evil". It made me so angry and sad that I have a terrible headache, and I almost never get headaches.
When the breadth of the scandal began to be revealed, and there was nothing but cover up by the church and the bishops, it was the final blow for my dwindling connection to the Catholic church. This film showed the only priest I have ever heard or read about who actually has apologized to victims. Father Tom Doyle is a victim advocate, and a canon lawyer.
At one point in the film he said that the only place in the bible that Jesus gets angry is in the church. And I believe that Jesus would be very angry in the Catholic church today.
I have too much of governments that run by their own perceived reality, contrary to all evidence to the contrary and I am not going to be a part of a church which is doing the same thing, especially to the most vulnerable. A hierarchy that believes that they are a law to themselves.
I could go on and on, I am so angry and feel so betrayed. If you have also been scandalized by the church, watch this documentary. There is a lot of sadness, but some hopeful things too.
Sunday, June 17, 2007
Another view of the studio table, showing the Ikea boxes that I have wanted forever, and finally purchased. It is so great to know just where various tools are. I have collections of various ephemera in the little boxes on top.
The other end of the table, that stack contains some of my rubber stamps, also easier to find now! Stamp pads are in a cassette tape holder that my husband found for me at a thrift store. He found an enormous one later, which we plan to put on the wall above the table, as I have filled the smaller one on the table. It will go back to thrift store heaven.
By the way, my husband is a fabulous thrift store shopper. He finds amazing things because he knows where to look in the two stores he frequents a couple times every week! How cool is that! He got me a table top easel awhile back. Did I already say that?
Here is an open view of the ArtFest accordian book. The pockets contain wallet-sized photos taken at ArtFest, and I managed to spell out A R T F E S T. The photos are on the reverse side.
The finished book, tied with ribbon.
I am working on another page for a small accordian book, only 5 players, called Sanctuary. I am altering photos to construct the page. I am doing the altering manually, and it looks good. I can't wait to see the finished book.
I also decided to give fatbooks a rest for a while, and signed up for an altered fabric swap! I am totally excited about this one, we can fancy dye, paint, stamp, silkscreen, whatever--4 to 6 fat quarters. We will get back as many fat quarters as we submit. A fat quarter is a half yard of fabric cut in half through the middle, so approx. 18"X 22". This is a great size for working and a handy size for using in quilts or other projects. I plan to submit 6, and have them all be different. It will be a great way to try different techniques.
Now mind you, I have never dyed, painted or stamped fabric, but I am thrilled to try it. I have read a lot about it, and these swaps are a great way to try new things, and for me they are especially good, because if I have a deadline, then I get things done!
Thursday, June 14, 2007
Tina's cousin, Mary VandeBogart, http://www.maryvdb.com/, has a show at Noble Horse in Pioneer Square in downtown Seattle. Tina came for the opening, which was on the 7th. It was great fun to go and celebrate Mary, and see Tina's other cousins, Mary's sisters, who I have known for almost as long as I have known Tina!
Mary is an amazing artist, she works in clay, sculpture, printmaking and most recently, bronze! Her bronze sculptures of horses are incredible. There is so much life in them, she took a class in the anatomy of horses--how cool is that??--and her sculpture shows it. It is so much more than technical skill, though. She has put the spirit of the horse into her work. Go and see the exhibit, if you are in the area!
Tina and I hit a couple of other gallerys while we were down there, I don't usually get a chance to go to First Thursday, because I work on Thursday evenings, so it was a real treat for me.
Friday we spent the whole day at Pike Place Market, it was an absolutely beautiful day, and we had a great time looking at everything, and sampling various food stuffs throughout the day. I had to make sure that we hit Milagros, my favorite store in the Sanitary Market. I came away with some Frida postcards and some wonderful handmade paper stamped with milagros (red paper stamped with yellow--Yummy!).
Tina lives in Salt Lake City, and we have never visited her and Jim there, but we made plans to go in August. I know, I know, it will be VERY HOT, but they have a fabulous vegetable garden, and August will be a perfect to partake of all of my favorites from the garden.
I have also been disciplining myself to devote some time to my business, which is massage. I have been having so much doing art, that I have been neglecting the business end of my business. I never neglect my clients, but doing marketing for the business always falls at the bottom of my to-do list. This is not smart if one wants to make a living and buy art supplies...
So, I have been writing a newsletter, and spiffing up my website, and planning some classes to do over the next few months.
Once I get going on a project, it becomes exciting, but sometimes it is hard to get started. Trying to learn just to make that first step, like putting the first big line on the big white journal page!
Pictures coming soon.......
Tuesday, June 5, 2007
I will bet you never do that, HA! That is why everyone has such long blog lists!
I actually have been making things, I made 10 little accordian books for a swap with the women from my photoart journal group who went to ArtFest this year. I am so happy with how they turned out! I also learned an important lesson: MAKE A PROTOTYPE BEFORE YOU START!
I had the idea for the accordian book before AF, but I didn't make an actual book, so didn't know how long it would take, or that the double-sided tape I planned to use to make the pockets in the book wasn't going to work, or that I couldn't get the depth of color I wanted stamping on black card stock (so I had to rethink that part, and think that the solution I came up with was even better than my original idea).
I am very happy with how the books came out, but next time I am making a prototype first so I don't have to keep making decisions on the fly, because OF COURSE I waited until the week before they were due to start, and they took much longer than I had imagined!
I have pictures of the books, and of my studio table, which I am loving so much, but I am going to post them later, like tomorrow, because I have a few more blogs to catch up on...
Friday, May 25, 2007
These were made by pouring acrylics on some canvas paper and using an old credit card to scrape it over the page. On some, I went back in and added some twinkling H2O's to cover any white spots.
I then cut the canvas paper in to the requisite number of pages, all 4X4, and stamped with foam shapes in several colors, and finally I used gesso and circular implements to over-stamp. I also doodled on some with black pen, but I don't think that I have any pictures of that.
Friday, May 11, 2007
I have been working on our dining room table since we moved in here, but then everything was always a mess, and I had to haul supplies from one room to another--not fun. It also tends to put a damper on the creative process.
We had a twin bed in the second bedroom, because we wanted to have a place for both kids to stay if they both came over at the same time. Well, they live within 6 miles of us, and that has never happened... We still have a very good futon as a couch in the living room, which we are happy to sleep on when we have guests, and I decided that if we got rid of the bed, I would have room for an art table!
This was accomplished in two weekends, and I now have the art table, and room to spread out my supplies and eventually have them a little more organized so I don't have to grub through several bins, saying "I know that I have a silver metallic pen! (insert all manner of swear words here)".
It would also be appropriate if I inserted a photo of said table here, but I haven't taken any yet. I am planning to, but wanted to post before I get around to that. It feels so good to finally have a space to create again, I feel relieved, and proud of myself for figuring out how to do it here in our small apartment.
Sunday, April 29, 2007
The trip to Whidbey was great, the poetry festival was good, we really enjoyed talking to the small press people who were there. We hit a thrift store in Langley where I found a GREAT old scrapbook, about 12X24 for $1.00!!! I plan to remove the blank newsprint pages and put in heavy watercolor paper and make an art journal. I am so excited about it!
We also found some prints of birds, and a bunch of great postcards that were quite inexpensive, as well. We had heard about a thrift store in Freeland that is supposed to be great, but we apparently went on a less-than great day. Not much there that interested us.
I didn't take many photos, either. Folks were tightly packed in the tents listening to poetry, and it would have been a bit intrusive to take photos. I will post a photo of my great scrapbook find later, though.
Saturday, April 28, 2007
However, I am not working today, and Tom and I are going to Whidbey Island for the Burning Word Festival, a festival of poetry in Greenbank. I read about it in the paper last Sunday, and we decided to go.
My husband, Tom, is a poet and he has a blog where he posts poems, and selected bits of writing by others. His blog ishttp://www.crowsperch.blogspot.com. He is going to take some poetry for the open mic sessions. I love poetry readings, and there should be some good people watching, too.
I am taking my camera, and will have something to post tomorrow, hopefully.
Sunday, April 22, 2007
On Thursday, my Shades of Black book arrived in the mail! I posted my b&w image of the chair earlier, now it is part of this beautiful book! The book is put together by Catherine Anderson, she makes the covers and designs the book. Usually, our books are 4X6, this is our first 6X6 book, all the pages are either black or white cardstock with our photo on the front, and a quote or poem or some writing about the theme on the back, along with our information.
You can see examples of my page, front and back, below. The book is very beautiful, the size really enhanced the photos, and the photos are all great! We will probably do more b&w books, as we all liked the format, and the experience of working without color.
Saturday, April 21, 2007
Have fun! More pictures tomorrow, I had an art day on Thursday!
Have a great weekend!
Thursday, April 19, 2007
Thanks to my friend, Miss J, for telling me how to fix this. I will put a link to her new blog tomorrow, I can't think of the name of it right now, past my bedtime. It is a great blog, she is an amazing artist!
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
I wish that I would not do this to myself, but once again, here I am. And here I am writing on my blog about this instead of just taking care of it. I think this is the definition of insanity....
Friday, April 13, 2007
The really amazing thing were the chains! He had these very long looping chains hanging from somewhere under his black leather coat, almost to his ankles. I was so fascinated by the pants that I almost didn't look up, but he was fully coordinated, he had a black fleece hat on, which had EARS which were lined with the same vivid green. It was quite the ensemble, and he looked like he maybe worked at Microsoft, otherwise. Who knows? maybe he does.
Unfortunately, he took the drink to go, I was hoping to see how he sat down with all those chains...It never fails, whenever I DON'T have my camera, I see something like that. I had to charge all of the batteries yesterday, and I put them in the camera this morning but forgot to put the camera bag with my other stuff.
In other news, I had a wonderful massage last night from Lynn W at the clinic where I work in Bothell. She did about 30 minutes of cranial sacral work, and it was amazing. I felt so totally relaxed, but alert as well. She said that I might notice some shifts in my life, though she felt that 30 minutes was probably not long enough to notice much.
As it happens, I found my self dancing and moving this morning and it felt really incredible! I always love to dance, but don't let myself do it enough, but this felt so nourishing and joyous, I definitely felt something different. I mean, I only danced for probably less than 5 minutes, but I felt invigorated all day, and found myself moving differently, shaking out my hands during my massages, and between them and the action of shaking my hands and moving to my own internal rhythm felt incredibly right.
I think that I may have experienced a little of the shift that Lynn was talking about. I am certainly going to explore cranial sacral more. I don't think that I will ever stop discovering new things about bodywork and its effects on my body and spirit.
Sorry, no photos now. I am going to put my camera with my things right now.
Thursday, April 12, 2007
I also took a wonderful class from LK Ludwig, on Sketchbook as Personal Design Source. I learned many wonderful things in that class, but as LK said, it was a process class, not a product class, so I don't have anything to "show" for it, but it was a wonderful class and I think that LK is a fabulous and generous teacher.
So, I am done documenting ArtFest. I am on to new projects, and I need to DO MY TAXES!!! I hate doing them, but having them hanging over my head keeps me from doing anything creative, so I had better get to it.
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
These are photos of some of the great people I met and spent some time with at ArtFest. I am still figuring out this adding photos thing. I can't figure out how to add captions to the photos, so I will explain them now.
From the top, randi feuerhelm-watts, who I met through the photoart journals group. We have been emailing for several months, and this is the first time that I met her. I sat between randi and Jennifer Louden in LK Ludwig's class on Friday. I feel like I know Jennifer because I have been reading her newsletter and blog for years, and I met her last year at AF, but this year I got to talk to her much more, and I love her!! That was a true RED LETTER DAY to sit between those two, whose work I admire soo much.
randi has a new book out, Wide Open: Inspiration & Techniques for Art Journaling on the edge which I highly recommend. Jennifer is the author of many books, her latest is The Life Organizer: A Woman's Guide to a Mindful Year, an absolutely beautiful book, and so appropriate for our times. Both books are a visual feast as well as being full of inspiration.
The second photo is Jennifer and LK, sharing a creative moment. Next is Catherine Anderson, the moderator and creative genius behind the photoart journal yahoo group. I am so fortunate that we met at last year's AF, and that she told me about this group. I love working a camera, thanks to the inspiration of Catherine and the others in the group, 8 of whom I met this year at AF. There were a couple of group pictures taken, and when I get one, I will share.
The fourth photo is Jean Johnson, I met Jean at AF last year, and we became good friends, I have looked forward to seeing her since last March. She is an incredibly funny woman, and smiles a lot, though she doesn't like to have her photo taken. Her heart is enormous, and I wish we lived closer!
Finally, Liz and Kelly Rae. These two young women are such an inspiration to me. They are really going after their dreams and living very intentional lives. I am so glad I got to spend time with them! And don't they look SO HAPPY!? Kelly Rae was selling her art at her first vendor night, I am so proud of her!
I will post some photos of my art and others tomorrow.
Sunday, April 8, 2007
I met the head of the photoart journal group at AF last year. Her name is Catherine Anderson and she is an incredible photographer and artist. She puts all of our books together, and each one has been a work of art. I didn't know anything about photography when I joined, had just gotten a very SIMPLE digital camera, but thanks to the themes we have had for books, and the encouragement of Catherine and others in the group, I have discovered that photography is one of my favorite things.
I love the different way of seeing and being able to record the moment of one's vision, so others may share it. We mount our photos on cardstock and put a quotation or poem pertinent to the theme on the back. My quote for the "shades of black" photo expressed a lot of how I feel about my new-found love of photography:
"The urge to create, the urge to photograph, comes in part from the deep desire to live with more integrity, to live more in peace with the world, and possibly to help others to do the same."
Wynn Bullock (1902-1975)