Daily Joys and Simple Pleasures

Daily Joys and Simple Pleasures

A Blessing for you on Monday

before you:  promise.

behind you: presence.

beneath you: integrity.

around you: source.

within you: joy.

may what you see be what you wish.  may what you know serve you well.  may what you sing bring kindness to others. may all you give bring mercy in a circle back to you. and may you be confident in the hand that will always be extended between you and your friend.

like the trees: may you stand/ firm/ ever reaching.  in the wind: ever bending. in the rich and healthy sail may you be ever rooted in your own knowing of the source of all things.

Hail, Atlantis!

I can date my life by where I was in various Shuttle launches.  The wonder with which they were greeted in my childhood has chilled somewhat for the generation that has seen so many technological advances.  I hear many people wonder about the importance of the Space Program when there are so many financial needs right here on earth.  I believe that space exploration is a wonderful teacher.  Many of our most significant innovations have evolved out of the space program.  You might not know…those ubiquitous sticky notes that are used everywhere…are the result of a space program experiment.  In many ways, the “space program” reaches into our every day, ordinary space.  Even our cellular technology owes a vote of thanks to the Space Effort.

Atlantis has launched.  And it called to mind COLUMBIA and how it fell from the sky in 2003.  I am going to share a piece from LEAN FORWARD INTO YOUR LIFE, from the Curiosity Takes Courage chapter.

I remember when the spacecraft fell from the sky to Texas.

I weep that we Americans seem to be defined more by what we have colelctively lost than by what we hold as a whole.  How is it we can call ourselves champions?  On this day I weep for our American star which fell from the Texas sky.  (They say everything is bigger there, I wonder if their grief is larger than mine?)  I remember another loss of this sort from my childhood.  I remember feeling the fear of throwing lives into the sky and wondering if they could possibly find their way home.  How these decades of progress have jaded my wonderment and my sense of risk.

Perhpas my loss imapirs my vision.  There is a spark of hopefulness in this tragedy.  It is the true spirit of a champion which allows us to continue to explore, after such collective loss we still wish to be pathfinders  We still long to answer questions and blaze a new way of seeing.  We still reach nonpartisan hands across borders and invite, “Let us be bigger together than we are alone.”

We are victors in this:  that tomorrow we will reach again for the stars and be sobered by this loss. In that reach for a higher excellence we will ask bigger questions and work, like champions, for the discovery of the answer.

All good wishes and prayers travel with this shuttle as it carries out its mission.  And good on all of us for the having the courage to continue to explore and discover.

Experiment Turns Into Experience

 

My experiment

using Carmen Torbus’s book,

THE ARTIST UNIQUE,

has turned into a wonderful

experience.

 

I used her book, internet resources, and the advice of friends to explore this entirely new medium.  I invited a good friend of mine to experiment with me.  She had the materials and equipment on hand, but had never invited herself to jump in.  So with music playing and good conversation, we had a great creative day together.  And both of us knew more at the end of the day than we knew when the day started.

Part of the commitment to this creative process was that I would make something to give away.  I used my circle on Facebook and over a dozen of  my Pride Pods found happy homes.  Gifts sent out into the world as messengers of tolerance and community.  I’ve worn one out into the world on three occasions – and each time that someone commented on the piece with some statement resembling, “Where did you gete that – I’ve never seen anything like it,” I gave it to them.

This process ignited a real interest in the world of polymer clay.  I used my new found skills to create a party favor for my guests at our Independence Day celebration.  I hammered copper to make a bookmark base and attached the Red, White and Blue pod.  Another “Pride” Pod.  Pride comes in all different colors!

Creativity comes in all different modes and ways.  This is a new expression for me.  I am committed to continue turning Experiments into Experiences!  And Carmen Torbus’s encouragement started this all.  I wonder what her inspiration might get started for you?

 

Questions for the “Self-Taught Artist” Carmen Torbus

Today I’ll share the rest of my interview with Carmen Torbus, author/editor of THE ARTIST UNIQUE.    I am providing another perspective through the view and questions of my friend and fellow artist, Christine Mason Miller.  Her interview with Carmen can be found here:     http://christinemasonmiller.com/2011/07/05/interview-with-carmen-torbus/

 

Mary Anne:  When did you connect to your passion to share what you know about art with others?

Carmen:  I’ve always been a cheerleader and I have this innate passion to inspire and encourage.  When I discovered mixed media art and realized how much I love it, I immediately wanted to share everything I was learning.  It’s just who I am… when I get excited about something I’m not able to keep the lid on it.

Mary Anne:    How did the idea of a creative book first occur to you?

Carmen:  I was developing an on-line workshop called “Spill-It”, which was focused on letting loose, exploring creative ideas and developing a style all your own.  The tag-line for the course was basically, “You, on canvas.”  As I was exploring ideas and playing with the techniques I wanted to include in the workshop, I felt pulled towards the idea that this was more than a workshop.  I loved the idea of not only sharing my ideas and how my own style has developed and evolved, but to round up some of my mentors, friends and absolute favorite artists and ask them to share their techniques, ideas and inspiration.  And ultimately, I wanted the collaborative to reach a bigger audience – which led me to the idea of making it a book.

Mary Anne:   What relationship does writing have to your art?

Carmen:   I think I’m still just barely dipping my foot into that relationship.  I haven’t fully opened that door.  I still hesitate when it comes to writing.  I don’t freely call myself a writer the way I’m finally comfortable (most of the time) calling myself an artist.  Someone recently asked if they could feature my book on their website and I was elated.  Then they said, “since you’re a writer, just write and article and sent it over.”  I had to read the sentence twice.  Me?  A writer?  Wow, I guess I am a writer.  It still hasn’t quite sunk in.

I love words and I love incorporating them into my art.  I love to write about the process of creating and the emotions and passion around it.   So my art and my writing are definitely connected and I’m really enjoying the process of learning more about that connection.

What vision to you have for your future as a creative?

In my wildest dreams, I see myself leading powerful workshops and creative workshops for women.  I see myself speaking to audiences of creative dreamers, giving them permission to follow their biggest dreams with all their heart.  I see myself writing inspiring messages of hope and encouragement, and sharing what I learn along the way.
Tomorrow I’ll share the rest of my Polymer Clay journey and share two photos of my fulfillment of the promise to give what I made away.

 

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