Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Me Vs. Laundry

This message came in my inbox today. 

Life's magic is a lot like a swift flowing river, Marji. No matter how long you've overlooked it or unwittingly swam against it, the instant you stop struggling you're back in the flow, hat down low, coolest cat on the block.

In other words, Marji, your so-called "baggage," ain't no thang.

Coolio -
The Universe
These are notes from the Universe which you can sign up for HERE

I also read this blog post that was just what I needed this morning.
Seems to me that I've been struggling against the current and getting a little bit anxious about it.   Point taken.
What I need to remember is that the 8 loads of laundry and the time it took away from other stuff - even though it wasn't on the list - It's a positive accomplishment in the day. 
My baggage - ain't no thang.  I'm feelin it.

Friday, May 25, 2012

In the Picture::May

Honest to goodness - does anyone know where May went? 
I hit a large pot hole on the road to 52 self portaits in May.  I'm kinda sad to say that the pot hole was hit at the beginning of the month and totally bounced me off the road.  I have ONE - only ONE self portrait for May.  Christy, Urban Muser, picked such an awesome theme for this month - Big World, Tiny You.  But even so... only one to show and it doesn't even follow the theme..

Want to see my list of excuses?  It starts with #1 = busy.  Really?  is that my #1 excuse? 
Enough whining.. I have work to do to get caught up now - like double the amount in June.  Time to get busy in a postive way.  Sending good postive thoughts out into the Universe for motivation behind photography for June.  Thanks to Christy for hosting {In The Picture}.  I can't wait to see what everyone else accomplished in May.  Hit the button below and hop around to see some pretty fine self portraits.
Interested to see what really has been my distraction for May?  Click HERE to visit my other post for Friday.
Please visit the other self portrait artists by clicking HERE

In The Picture

Friday:: Aspire to Inspire

encaustic on birch 10x10
Have you ever pondered the thought : What lifts me up? 
What is it that you do that really makes you feel good inside and causes that little wave of emotion to surge and the tiniest of smiles to cross your face.
What lifts me up?  I've been thinking about this lately.   This is what I came up with:  Inspire - inspire is top of the list. Really. The thought I did something or said something that inspired someone else – wowie. Uplifting. You GO Girl kinda stuff.

So how do we do this – add inspire to our daily list of things we do? What if the TO DO list looked something like this:
Grocery shopping, inspire, bank, inspire, Dr. appt.,inspire, laundry, inspire, make dinner, inspire
I mean really, look at the definition. How can we not find a way to add this to our day.

in·spired, in·spir·ing, in·spires

1. To affect, guide, or arouse by divine influence.
2. To fill with enlivening or exalting emotion:
a. To stimulate to action; motivate:.
b. To affect or touch:
4. To draw forth; elicit or arouse:
5. To be the cause or source of; bring about.
6. To draw in (air) by inhaling.

7. Archaic
a. To breathe on.
b. To breathe life into.
1. To stimulate energies, ideals, or reverence:
2. To inhale.

Inspire comes in so many shapes and forms. Inspire can be intentional and unintentional. I actually believe that often times we have no idea that something we did was inspiring. So today add inspire to your “do” list – say something kind, do something kind, smile, laugh, compliment, hug, kiss, inhale – and be your amazing self. You may not know who you inspire, but really that's OK. If we all include at least one kind act or kind words in our day, we will inspire others. Today, go out into the world and aspire to inspire.

Happy Paint Party Friday to you all. Many thanks to this group for their kindness and beautiful inspirational work. Hit the button below and go and visit some of these amazing artists who share their work on Fridays.  (sorry for the small print - ran into an HTML snag that I couldn't seem to fix)

Monday, May 21, 2012

FILM26:: The Letter K

Letter 11
the Letter K

K - what starts with K?  Seemed a little challenging at first - King, kick, knit - none of which seemed to be the right words for me. 
I was lucky for a trip to the beach during my search for K.  My beach walk turned up not one but two K opportunities:


 Silly - I know.  Wandering around with camera in hand wondering what in the world I may see that begins with the letter K.  Lucky me - one more::

Have a great two weeks in search of the letter K.  Post your film photo finds at the Flickr group FILM26

Friday, May 18, 2012

Friday - Let it Go

Wish You Were Here
photo encaustic on birch 5x5
Do you have a painting "bone yard", a place where the misfit works go?  You know what I mean.. the ones that no matter how hard you work on them and no matter how much time you spend, you just can't make them flesh out to the vision you had in your mind's eye.  Is it because the composition is off?  Perhaps its the drawing itself or the colors or really you can't put your finger on it - but it just isn't right and it doesn't do it for you.  There is something about the piece that does not lift you up and make you smile. 
Well, I have those works and I'll share what I have found to do.  Let it goLet it go to the bone yard, the land of misfit works or be recycled, reused, cut up, or painted over.  I used to spend lots of time trying to make it right.  No matter what I did, I could never really pull it out.  I would enter my studio and give a big *sigh* and think... well, I'll take another stab at it and see if I can get it right.  Yet, there is something that lingers within that just knows this one is not quite right.  Nope, I'm not going to do it anymore..  Let it go.  Even the greats, like John Singer Sargent for example, rubbed out and started fresh.   I've decided that's the way to go - let it go.  Move on, move forward.  Turn it around so you don't look at it every time you enter the studio - there should be no wayward sigh.  As artists, I believe we should do art that lifts us up not work on something that sucks the creative spirit from us.  It's OK to let it go.  It's OK to leave it behind.  These works are the learning tools, the stepping stones that move us on, move us forward.  These are the works that get us from A to B.  Take from these works, the one thing you were meant to learn.  What did you like about it?  Was it the color, the process of making it, the line, the texture... if you really look, there is one or perhaps more than one nugget of something great that happened.  As a whole, well... it didn't come together - but that one little part of it was pure brilliance.  Take that and build upon it for the next one - but, as a whole.. let it go.
I have two right now that really I can't get them right and they are big and I've put a lot of time in.  But, the process of making them.. the line, the texture in the background, a couple things I did - I love.. love, love, love.  Now, I just have to figure out how to take those little bits that make me smile and excite me and move forward with them.   
It's Paint Party Friday today - YAY!  I so love going blog hopping and seeing what everyone is doing.   And, I'm linking up with Creative Every Day

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Rainy Day Sanctuary - Part 2

Yesterday, I introduced several of the flower houses at the Seattle Volunteer Park Conservatory.  I spent a rainy afternoon there about a week ago.  After I got home and looked at the photos I took, I decided that it was pretty obvious by the number of photos that I kinda took a hankering to the Cactus House.

I totally admit that I have a thing about texture.  I really am drawn to texture and line.  So what is there not about that in the Cactus House - its like texture and line Heaven.  I love finding inspiration in Nature.

 The Cactus House itself is not huge by any means, but it is packed with so much interest that I was a little like a kid in a candy store. 

For those of you who are desert dwellers - this is kinda ordinary and a little old-hat for you - but for me.. a girl from the Pacific NW - this is cool.

 Sharp and soft

 I love the whisker effect on this one.. and the cactus bokeh

 Its like a nest

 Who knew there were blue cactus in the world?

These look like sea anemone

 Line - texture - Love

More Cactus Bokeh.
*Sigh*  cactus love.  Have a happy weekend.  Its Paint Party Friday tomorrow.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Rainy Day Sanctuary

About a week ago, I had some time to kill on a rainy day.  A trip to the Seattle Volunteer Park Conservatory has been on my list.  There had been an article in the paper about how the funding was tight and how it perhaps might be closed due to the cost of maintaining this building.  I was really feeling it would be a shame if I didn't get there before it was shut down.  Plus, I had some film to drop off on Capital Hill and I had to wait for it to be developed.  Perfect timing, perfect day for a visit.
It was built 1912 and fashioned after the Crystal Palace in London.You enter under a 35 panel hand blown and etched stained glass canopy.
 There are five Houses within the Conservatory, each with its own theme and climate.  I got to travel around through the botanical world in mere steps. 
 Each room has its own climate that happily supports the lovlies that reside within.  The colors and textures of the plants and foliage were beautiful. 
 I wandered through the Bromeliad House
 Then came upon the Fern House
 The Palm House is where the Orchids live
 The Seasonal Display house was full of beauties
 And of course... can't pass by the Passion Flower
It was a beautiful place to spend a rainy day.  Tomorrow, I'll show you what I saw in the Cactus House.  You can learn more about this place through its friends

Monday, May 14, 2012

Monday Shout Out

You may have heard about this video - you may have already seen it.  It was made here in Seattle at the Children's Hospital by one of the patients.  Creative, Inspiring and really just plain motivating.  It pulls on your heart strings and it makes you think about inner strength.  This is my Monday Shout Out to the kids at Seattle Childern's Hospital and the fire they built by making this video.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Friday - Live Life Fearlessly

Live life fearlessly
Its my new motto.  Have any of you read the book "Dying to Be Me: My Journey from Cancer, to Near Death, to True Healing" by Anita Moorjani?  Well, first off, I will say it is not for everyone.  You have to like those kinda spiritual journey books in order to like it.  If you like Dwayne Dyer's stuff, you'll like this one.  She's got some great insight that she brings forward.  Stuff we've all heard or read.. but I think it doesn't hurt to hear it again.  I found out about it through Danielle LaPorte - I'm a huge fan of Danielle LaPorte - she makes me laugh, she makes me cry and she really gets me pondering some things. 
Anyway... back to live life fearlessly.  This doesn't mean wrecklessly, or without abandon or any of that stuff.  I'm not going to go bungee jumping - because that really does scare the pants off me.  What it does mean is - dump the fears.. all those little nagging things that eat away at us and keep us from really being something - our true something.  The old stuff - the I'm not good enough, I don't fit in, I can't this or I can't that because really.... I'm afraid.  OK - dump it - really, its time.
How does all this fit into the painting above? - well, good question... 
It has to do with being an artist - how often do we feel we don't stack up - we compare, we criticize, we self destruct and we melt down into a big pile of goo.  How often do we not try something new because.. well, its too hard, I can't do it, it takes too much time to learn it, I'm not good at that - got the idea?  Yep, fears... all of them.  And... what can we do about all that? - you got it- live life fearlessly.
I'm still working with photo transfers and encaustic and I'm finding a way to make them my own, make them more than a photograph and make them more than what I expected I could do.
It's Paint Party Friday - dump the fears, experiment, have fun, and try something new.

Monday, May 7, 2012

FILM26:: J is For....

Letter number 10 = the Letter J
Two weeks have flown by and its time to move onto the next letter at FILM26
Me and J
 I actually got behind and was really scrambling to get my J film to the developer on Friday.  The weather really has not been cooperative and I have to say I'm a little tired of taking photos in the rain.

 I have good intentions.  I set aside photo days and I go - rain or shine.  Well, seems to be more rain than shine on those days. 

Plus, at the time - J seemed like a tough letter.  I can think of lots now - after the fact. 

In the end, it all worked out.  Things have a way of doing that even when it seems a little like wading up stream.  Happy with J.  Want to join in the fun? - hmmm Join another J word - grab a button and post a letter J film photo over at the Flickr group.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Friday:: Sink or Swim

No Parking
encaustic, paper and photo transfer on Birch Panel 9x12

Have you ever been faced with that old addage - Sink or Swim?  or.. Fish or Cut Bait... however, you want to say it - it holds the same decision.   Its a choice to either take part and be a "doer" or just be on the sidelines be a "watcher". 
Photo transfer work in encaustic has been elusive for me.  Its not that its a hard process, in fact its quite easy.  I've decided to take a run at it for the next month.  I have been thinking for a long time on how to combine the two things that I love - photography and encaustic.  There are lots of examples of work out there of people who do just that.  You can check out this website or this one or here.
One of my favorites is Ben Hecht and his amazing waves. 

So, I'm on board.. I'm going to give it a go and try to work on combining photography and encaustic painting.  This is one of my first attempts.  I used this procedure to transfer the image to the wax.  Her swimsuit is a photo I had taken of a reflection in some building windows.  The door to the left and no parking sign... mine too.  I enhanced the door with some strips of book pages - why... well, the photo didn't transfer well and that's what came to mind.  Don't you just love when something appears to be going badly - then ahhhhh... Genius strikes and it all turns out OK.
I'm hooking up with Paint Party Friday today. 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Photo-Heart Connection::April

I really didn't have much to show for photos for April.  I browsed back into the April archives and I came to the conclusion that April is not a big photography month for me. 
However, with that said - there was some common April photos and that is the cherry blossoms.
Every year, I make the trek to the University of Washington campus and I stand among the Yashino Cherry Trees.  I'm not the only one who came to admire their beauty.  I shared the large space with many photographers trying to capture the beauty of the blossoms. 
When I come home and look through the photos from the day - I always feel that I can't quite capture the beauty there.  I think that's one reason I go every year is that I don't feel I have gotten it - that one photo that captures the essence of what standing under the enormous canopy of cotton candy blossoms is really like.  I can't find a way to capture the confetti of pink petals flickering in the air.  Nor can I capture the smells, the energy and the vibe this space holds for me.  But, what I can do is keep those memories fresh in my mind with the photos I do take.  I found this one to be the one for the photo-heart connection for April.  It not only reminds me of the beautiful day under the trees, but it also reminds me of the importance of capturing the things that I love.  It reminds me the importance of taking photos in order to keep these kinds of moments alive for me.  I'm linking up with the Photo-Heart connection hosted by Kat Sloma today.

  And... just for fun, I couldn't resist a little more photo-heart connection.  I found her while looking for 1960's photos.  She rocks that hairdo - don't ya think?

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