Monday, May 31, 2010
Sunday, May 30, 2010
Friday, May 28, 2010
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Sunday, May 23, 2010
Here is a lovely bee that contributed to my contemplative and wonderful weekend.
The Love Generation - Bob Sinclair
I love people. I love how the trouble-makers challenge me to grow and how anyone can be a trouble-maker to anyone else, no matter what your relationship. I love that people that may seem insignificant can have the most incredible impact. I love that without even knowing someone, they can change your life.
I practice compassion as best as I can and I love listening to this song as a reminder for all that. When I go out in the world I'd much rather add to the love on the planet than add to the aggression.
The Healing Room - Sinead O'Connor
When I was fourteen I went to my umpteenth Ontario-based conference with the Students Commission, a national organisation that empowered youth by asking them how they were going to change the world now, rather than when they grew up (Explains a lot about me, doesn't it?). On one of the days we got to go in to Ottowa. Whilst there I found a Sinead O'Connor CD and bought it on impulse. I recalled how my mum and I used to listen to her when I was a kid and I figured this was one of her old CDs. I didn't know about her little debacle or that her career spiraled into a black hole as a result and this was a new album that would go almost entirely unnoticed.
This particular song didn't stick out for me initially but has since become crystal clear. It's about knowing yourself and listening to what you have to say. It's about finding a balance within and using that to balance how you are without.
Be Like Water - Sarah Fimm
I found this song on the D.E.B.S. soundtrack. I adore this song beyond belief. It's so important to remain fluid, to allow change to happen and to not be restricted by putting rules and boundaries around what we feel we should or shouldn't do. Sometimes life will be unhinged and difficult but that doesn't mean we need to run away from it. Running away from what makes us uncomfortable is to deny the very essence of what it means to live. Life is change, life is being hurt, life is smiling and laughing, life is exploring and growing, life is a new job, an old car, a new house, an old city. Life is meant to be lived fluidly and we cannot fill the holes and cracks in another person life. We can't be someone else's fix. We must be our own answer to the life we choose to live.
A Moment to Myself - Macy Gray
"Quit bitching about how nobody really love you..."
Very important to take time to have conversations with yourself. The one person you're with your entire life is yourself and it's so important that you learn to love who that is.
"The answers I've been looking for have been here all this time."
Be O.K. - Ingrid Michaelson
I like dancing to this. I bounce around on my toes and I love it.
...and we all will be O.K.
Good Mother - Jann Arden
Keep grounded, face forward, hold onto your heart, love yourself and remember who loves you.
Have a happy Sunday.
Saturday, May 22, 2010
All my past visits have been during the week, when the temple is closed. The monastery is open to visitors; people come to speak to the monks or to offer food. I've been in the building where they live and had a lovely time there, but all my visits after that first time have been found me quite alone on the grounds.
On the weekends the temple is open for a service and ceremonies are conducted. I was hesitant to go to any of these if only because I enjoyed the serene quality of the grounds when I was there alone. I also found myself going there when the general crush of London was starting to get to me and the point was to avoid a crowd.
Today I felt it was important for me to go, regardless of it being a Saturday.
I'm so glad that I did, as today I've had the most incredible experience of watching a young man being ordained as a monk. I sat inside the temple, surrounded by some of the most stunning and intricate artwork I've ever seen in my life, and participated in a ceremony that is truly indescribable. A very lovely woman sat next to me throughout, explaining the customs and translating when necessary and to her I am ever-so grateful.
There was something so incredibly profound about being there today. I'm not often unable to find the words to express how I feel or what saw, but so much of today was just about being. It was magnificent and serendipitous.
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
Thursday, May 13, 2010
Monday, May 10, 2010
An ad like this could be taken one of two ways.
It could mean that you're waiting for a lottery ticket and hoping that maybe you'll be able to make it big as an artist because artists that make it big seem to have an excess of funds.
In this regard I'm not bothered by the ad. Reality check: sitting around wishing and hoping and doing silly art for the sake of a pay cheque isn't going to happen.
But look at it another way and it's sad. It's like the idea of living your dream is 'foolish' and won't amount to anything.
One morning I was watching BBC and they were interviewing one of the radio hosts about the topic of the show she'd be hosting later in the day. She looked at the camera and said, "Do you want your children to be successful or happy? we're going to talk about encouraging them to do well in academics vs. doing well in arts and crafts and things."
I find this mentality all over the place; the idea that success equals money and money equals a desk job.
I once read a blog entry about what success means and what it means to an artist. How do you measure your success?
The blog entry was listed under the suitably titled 'Deep Thought Thursday' and I chose to put a lot of thought into it. When I chose to start identifying as an artist it was at a time when my life was a blank slate. A number of catalysts had lead me to shift my perspective and start fresh. Fourtunately I was raised to know that success and happiness go hand in hand. Happiness is loving the life you're leading and to do that you must be leading the life you're meant to. We are each of us responsible for making that happen. No one is going to come along and give us the winning lottery ticket or buy our money making scheme.
It's not about pinning a sock onto canvas. It's about exploring your talent, knowing you will never learn it all but striving to learn as much as you can every day. It's about seeking growth and embracing change.
I could say reality is overrated but it's not that. I think reality is ill-defined. The reality of the world is that you have one life to live and it's not actually that long. So if you are a famous artist, go be a famous artist. And if you're a business guru go be a business guru. And as you do what you are, you will be successful and you will be happy. Even when things are miserable, you can find happiness in knowing you're loving the life you live because you're living the live you choose.
Sunday, May 9, 2010
I think the best part of painting the flame was that I got to do so whilst sitting in the dining room with my mum and a dear, dear friend present. It was clearly beneficial.
I have to admit, however, I'm a bit nervous about how I'm going to go about doing the spider-web (Hard to see now, but it's down in the left-hand corner.)and the chain. A fun challenge, though. As with all my paintings, I try to do something that makes me uncomfortable each time. Obviously, having tackled flame when I did the Temperance Card, I have come to love doing it. I'm certain that doing it under another image shan't prove to be too difficult...once I get the right technique.
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
Having completed one piece of stained glass, I now have an understanding of how it works. I set out to do my second one with a very clear concept in my head. I wanted to use a circle of glass for the centre and have it spiral out in a rectangular frame. The middle piece would be red, followed by orange, yellow, green, blue and purple.
I set to work with this drawing only to find it consuming the entire stained glass class session, minus the time taken to purchase the glass.
I was eager to start cutting glass the following week but as circumstances and prior plans would have it, stained glass class was put on hold. It was several weeks before I returned and during this time I was certain that the pattern was tucked neatly into the same package in which my chosen glass was wrapped.
It wasn't until last week that I realised the truth. I opened the package and the pattern was not to be found. It was lost, but for strange fragments in my memory where I can uncertainly place it on a bookshelf, in a bag, or sandwiched in a pile of paper. All of my searching has resulted in disappointment and thus I must accept that it is gone.
The difficulty with this is, I have convinced myself that it was Perfect. Of course such a thought is quite silly because I could probably have tweaked it here and there and if I put the same effort into a new one it will likely be an improvement. I seem to have convinced myself that it won't be something I can duplicate since it seemed just right as it was. I may be putting this Lost Pattern on a pedestal and it's an easy way for me to claim this as The Piece That Would Not Be if only because I'm stubborn and the thought of duplicating it is more frustrating than anything.
But these things happen and the glass is bought and paid for and awaiting it's purpose. I can't leave such stunning colours wrapped in paper for long, so I am once again embarking on the task of drawing a pattern...my own pattern, anew.
So once again I find myself ending an entry with the ever apt term: Such is life.