Saturday, December 20, 2014

Around Here: Feeling Blessed

I am feeling incredibly blessed this week. 
I've been given many wonderful early Christmas gifts (scarves, snacks, bath products, art supplies!)
My Christmas bonus was over twice what I thought it was going to be, which provided me with money to sign up for The Dirty Footprints IGNITE online intensive. 
I have had this program bookmarked for two years. 
I have been wanting to grow as an intuitive art facilitator for quite some time. 
The timing and energy was practically yelling at me to take the leap. 
(As I wrote that, the song I was listening to said "The timing's right." I kid you not!)
I feel practically radiant. 
Even through the exhaustion of work and Christmas planning, I feely shiny and refreshing. 
I feel like Sprite. Haha. 
Here's some visual references of my what's been going on around here: 
I found my New Year's Eve dress in my friend's closet. 

 I did a little something in my art journal for the first time in forever

We are preparing epically for our Christmas party. We got so much amazing Christmas swag super cheap at the thrift store! 
 I hope you are all well and feeling blessed this holiday season. 
Take time from the frantic planning, running around and stress to have a warm drink and think about all the magic in your life. 

Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Coming To Love and The Little To Dos

Story Time.
I have had a problem with my smile since I was in highschool. 
It had never occurred to me before then that there was anything weird or off about my smile/teeth. 
But unfortunately, highschool brings out a lot of insecurites about flaws in young people that they otherwise may have never seen in themselves or worried about.

I have sucked my thumb for as long as I can remember, and it has pushed my bottom front teeth slightly inwards. I also have slightly longer canines. This has the effect of a gap appearing between my front top teeth and my front bottom teeth.
I went maybe 10 years only smiling with my mouth closed. 
I was terribly insecure about that gap. 
I thought it made me look at a troll. 

But I've noticed something in the past couple of months, my smile has changed. 
My teeth still have the gap, but the way I smile doesn't show it as much and I can actually smile with my teeth showing without cringing at the results. 
This wasn't an intentional or conscious change or altering on my part. 
But lately, I have felt much more confident in my smile and snapping pictures of it, without my lips being clammed up. 

 So, there's a little smile story for ya! 
Do you have any physical features that used to bother you that you have come to love or at least accept?

I am still swamped with little time. 
I am shuffling slowly to get little things done. 
Writing a blog here, clearing clutter there. 
Starting a homemade Christmas gift here, purchasing a few online there. 
It's just little tidbits for now. 
Hoping to have time and energy for the big projects soon.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Color Love: Yellow In My Art

I love using yellow as a pop of color in my art. 
Here's some snippets. 

I think I will share more colors of my art in a series! 
Things are well here. Work is stressful but I am managing, plus making lots of extra money. 
Breaking down barriers and reaching new heights within myself and within my relationships. 
Things are feeling lighter.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Taking Care, Joyful Pieces

Oh hello. 

Things are heavy around here. 
Stretched thin.

Sometimes I can't eat because of emotional stress. 
Sometimes I feel dizzy when I'm around people. 
Sometimes I just feel sick and nauseous out of nowhere. It will only last ten minutes or so and then go away. 

I just don't have any time or energy for creating and it makes me feel like a shadow of a person, really. 

I'm just trying to take care of myself when I can, conserving energy and harvesting it. 

I don't really like hot tea but I've been making myself drink at least a cup a day for the antioxidants. 
And I've been drinking lots of water and taking vitamins. 
Practicing self care and love is very important to me right now.

I'm just trying to be quiet and find joy in the little lovely things that are surrounding me daily. 
Like my snail babies, sleeping next to my warm handsome boyfriend, reading blogs, watching youtube, and playing silly app games on my phone. 

Thinking about all I need to do for the holiday season is a tiring bummer so I'm really trying to quiet it and enjoy the moment I'm in. 

I have Unraveling 2015 to look forward to.
Check it out here. I did it last year and it is quite moving and awakening.
I will be posting a 2014 wrap up later this month that will go over last year's Unraveling.

I am torn between keeping my Etsy shop or moving over to Aftcra. Anyone try both and have a better experience on one over the other?
Either way, I'm reposting some prints on Etsy soon and am working on a few new prints as well.

 Here's one I'm working on, not done yet, still plenty of editing to tinker with.

And here is a little piece I did for my friend's band, Speak, Memory.
I am actually really proud of this one. And you can find their music here:

And here's me being angelic (tinkering with photo editing some more.)

I hope you are all finding little pieces of joy lately. 

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

The Joy of Blogging

Hey there lovely readers! 
I have been going through a tough, exhausting, numbing time lately. 
With not a lot of free time, and the free time I did have was spent veggin' out because I've been so tired; physically, mentally, and emotionally. 
Things are still hectic in most of my life categories; work, finances, plans, art, personal well being, relationship, and so on. 
But I stumbled upon this blog through twitter: Talk2TheTrees
I was instantly drawn in by her art and her energy that bursts out of the website and seems tangible. 
Reading a few of the newest posts was not enough for me, I wanted more! 
So I went back in the archives to 2010 and read forward from there, reading a few posts from each month. 
I'm not even caught up yet, but it's been a delightful and inspiring read! 
This lady is such a delight and her genuine spirit shines through the blog. 
She is a lot like me, actually. We are both artists, positive thinkers, aspiring minimalists, and we both love Doctor Who! 
What a gem!

Reading through her blog reminded me of the joys of blogging, the joy of sharing our ups and downs, our art, our visions, truths, and voice. 
This post is a stand out one for me: To Be Bold
It reminded me to not be a passive player in my life, to not let things happen to me. 
I need to happen to life. 
I need to move within the world. 
I need to alight, to be a force of joyful truth in this world. 
I want people to think of me and feel joy and brightness, to think of open arms and acceptance. 

I'm trying to get back to that place of being. 
It just takes a lot of energy and that's something that I feel is constantly being drained from me from so many sources lately. 

But I want to start blogging more often, even just little updates, even if it's not some huge revelation or insight. I want to share more of myself and my viewpoint and my story. 

To start off, here are some lovely happenings and sources of joy in my life right now: 

 I've been working with a few friends on a secret project about winter, this photo is from a video/photo shoot done with a friend:

I got three pet snails! I have wanted pet snails for years now! I have a huge trippy snail tattoo on my left thigh, so having three real ones is a dream come true! 
The big one is Bellatrix, the medium sized one is Reginald, and the tiny one is Tesla.
They are adorable when they eat! and they feel weird when they slime crawl on your skin!

Tesla is my favorite, he needs extra care and attention because he is really sensitive to his surroundings. Here is all three doing some weird snail pile, I came home to them this way!:

This was my Thanksgiving outfit, I really love those high waist pants. I want more but I only shop thrift stores and finding things my size/style can be hard! 

I got to spend time with my family that I love so so much! 
We went to the park and saw this neat art piece and decided to snap some family portraits!
It's rare that we are all able to be in the same place at the same time so we had to revel in it! 
 The camera was on a timer, my brother and I said for everyone to run but we were the only ones who took off! Glad it was captured, haha!

 I am not much of a hat person. But I love my bowler hat! 
(I got really into Charlie Chaplin in highschool and even went as him for Halloween one year.)
(I also made the scarf out of fabric from Joann's.)

I finally finished a painting after some months. It's a surprise gift for the person who paid my gofundme so that I could go home for Thanksgiving and see my family! I am still so awed and grateful to that person for their kindness!
 It's titled "Daydream" and I will be working on art prints soon. 

So, that's an update on my life currently and you will be hearing/reading more from me soon and more often! 
I hope you are all finding things to be joyful about and also finding ways to be a piece of joy in this world!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

The Benefits of Jumping In

November has been spent in a far different fashion than how I spend most months. 
And it's only half way through! 
But I've been riding a creative, brainstorming, productive, excited wave for the past two weeks. 

I believe it started when I created a gofundme to get home for Thanksgiving. 
And one person donated the full amount! 
I was so awed and dumbfounded and grateful. 

It buoyed me and made me feel such an appreciation and joy for life. 

A few days later, on November 2nd, I heard of NaNoWriMo for the first time. 
For those of you who don't know, November is National Novel Writing Month and on, you can track your progress, get encouragement and add writing buddies that are also attempting the feat of writing a novel in a month.
As soon as I heard of it, without thinking, I jumped right in. I created an account and started expanding on a story idea I had jotted down over a year ago. 
And while I am not as far as I should be at the halfway point in the month, I am still happily engaged in this project. I think about it constantly. When I'm at work, my brain is always going through what could happen next, specific scenes I want to write. I think about my characters, what I like about them, what makes them tick. I think about how they look, I even want to draw pictures of them for extra reference. I've even been thinking of ideas on what to write as my novel for next year's NaNoWriMo! 
So, clearly, I am obsessed. And I've even had this similar conversation with more than one friend. 

Me: Oh, man. I've really got to get some writing done. (or, I didn't get as much writing done as I wanted, I am behind!) 
Them: I think you are taking this too seriously, you should meet your own goals. It shouldn't stress you out. 

But the thing is, I am having so much fun! You can work hard at something, you can even be stressed about it, but still be passionate about it and crave doing it. And honestly, this novel would not have been written without NaNoWriMo. 
I know myself. The idea would have sat in that notebook until the end of my time. Because on an average day, I don't think about writing novels. I don't even think I am particularly good at writing fiction in the first place.
But by jumping in completely, without giving myself time to think about, it lit the spark in me to really try, to challenge myself, to explore a creative outlet I never would have explored before.

Then another project sprung to mind, and once again, I jumped in fully to get it started and to bring this small idea to life before me. 
It's about winter and it's a secret project for now.
I don't know why but I feel so close to this project and I don't want to it out there quite yet. 
I am nourishing it, letting it become slowly. I have lovely people helping me with their own visions and creative experiences. 

Once again, usually when I get an idea, I think "Someday I will create this, when I have more time, when I've thought it out and planned it completely and it's a well thought, complete design to follow." 
But not this time. I just thought about what I wanted to create and I instantly started messaging people I thought could help, I instantly started drafting up ideas and thoughts and inspirations. 

Something about November has just lit up a spark of action within me.
Instead of just mulling over ideas that I eventually forget in the background and never act on, I am fully jumping in to the projects that light me up. And it's brought great results of productivity and growth.

I'm not saying that I can work full force like this all the time. I would wear myself out, spread myself too thin. 
But for right now, I am reveling in it.

If an idea has taken hold of you, if you have a spark inside you, don't wait. 
Act on it, start making steps to bring your idea to life. 
Jump in without hesitation, with reckless abandon, lose yourself to the idea. 
Just try it out for a month, see where you land in the end. See what you can create with this energy. 
You will be pleasantly surprised at what you've got inside of you when you give it time and space to reveal itself, when you are excited about it existing.
Jump in fully. Even if the water's too cold, at least you'll feel more awake and more alive.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Never Stop Exploring: A Photo Essay

I haven't done much work with black and white photography. I thought I would give it a try with some photos of a recent road-trip. I really like the story they tell.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Words and Images: Peaceful Coloring

This is the start of a new little series for the blog. 
"Words and Images" will be simple posts sharing my recent intuitive writings and sketches.
The point is simplicity, nothing elaborate.

a peaceful coloring, a moment's glow
but not in focus
I'm all sorts of bursting 
fall is my comfort, travel my remedy
can all my words be heard in the clamor? 
pinched nerve reckoning
I'm more than disaster, scribblings
reckless searching, soft news
it never did rain
 a cascading emergence, truth emerging
no one can make me feel behind the curve
of my own path
I didn't find it, I said "hello"
a wind in the voice
a bending pain
I don't want to balance anymore
I want wild abandon
full immersion
shouts of completion
 an explosion, an outpouring
a forgiveness
a blissful wandering 
in me.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Creekside Explorations

The town I live in has an amazing creek running through it. 
There is a walking/bike path that runs along the creek as well.
It's a really lovely peace of nature right in the heart of the city.

I need nature. 
It grounds me. 
It makes me feel at peace and whole. 
When I go too long without spending time surrounded by nature, I begin to feel low energy and unexcited about life. 
Nature connects me to positive, refreshing energy. 

The other day I went exploring along the banks of the creek. 
I try to get away from the streets and the path and find quiet places away from city noise. 

Here's what some moments looked like to me: 

 Such a lovely creek! 

 I love looking up and seeing the tops of trees against a blue sky. Blue and green together is lovely! 

 These balanced stones are all over my town. They are a great representation of balance and zen. 

 Another thing I'm kind of obsessed with is the way sunlight filters through the trees. Whether its the green leafs or the yellows and reds of fall, I find it so enchanting! 

There are a lot of tree roots covered in moss by the creek. This one just looked wise and fluid to me. 

I walked for about 20 minutes before finding the ideal spot to settle down to write, draw and read.

More lovely tree colors against a vivid blue sky. 

I love drawing by the creek. The sound of the water is a great background for when I am lost in a creative flow. 
 On the way walk back to my bike, I found this really cool orange feather! I don't know what kind of bird this might belong to, but I want to see one someday. 

 There a lots of spots covered with green and red moss. It looks so magical and pretty with the creek flowing next to it.

For most of our lives, it is naturally to only look around us at eye level. 
I try to make it a point to look up at the trees and sky and to get down closer to the small details of moss and mushrooms and roots. 
There is so much beauty and detail we can miss by only looking in one direction. 
A Deathcab for Cutie song sums it up nicely: "Oh, what a beautiful view, if you were never aware of what was around you."

Switch up your angles and your perspective from time to time, the views will refresh you and open up your creativity!
And definitely don't forget to surround yourself with organic, breathing nature!