Mandala prints and cards are available at these stores in Orange County, CA:

Awakenings, Laguna Hills, CA
The Sanctuary, Tustin, Ca
Sunburst Sanctuary, Lompoc, Ca

Sunday, June 5, 2011

A light at the end of the tunnel

As you can deduce by the vast amount of time between now and my last post, my life has been turned upside down and sideways - and yet I still have time to make art. It grounds me, exhilirates me, and puts me into that mind-space where nothing else matters and time does not exist. It helps answer questions that I would not otherwise give myself the time to ask, let alone find an answer to.

This latest collage, with boats, cabinets, crosses and pyramids spinning around in a crazy whirlpool, is called "Am I ready?" Three women, all dear friends, sat around my studio table one afternoon and gave ourselves one hour to complete 11x18 collages. We wrote questions that were "up" for us on the back of a canvas panel, then mixed them all up and handed them out randomly. No one knew what question was on the back of their canvas. Then commenced a great flurry of paint on canvas, magazine pics being chosen, cut and placed on top of the paint, more paint, more pics, lots of laughter, some chocolate and iced tea, a mutually agreed-upon 10 minute extension, and voila! Four beautiful, completely unique and wonderful pieces of art. And then, each piece was reverently placed on the mantel and gazed upon - received and taken in - a gift from the unconscious to its creator and the world. Only then did the creator get to read the question on the back of their piece.

What happened next was that lovely shift into a shared heart/mind space. It was warm and safe and nurturing - like sinking into one of the tubs at Esalen - beautiful and sacred. We shared what we saw and intuited and knew on some other level than the one we usually operate from. My collage (my unconscious - my higher self?) asked me, "are you ready for the whirlpool, which will feel like you are spinning through confusion, loss and fear, but will end in a brightly lit world of beauty and peace?" Well, of course I'm ready, when you put it that way! Thank goodness some part of me knows. Because my head is still spinning and fretting.

The collage process is so fun and so wonderful for getting in touch with that wise part of ourselves that I am offering a class. Check the sidebar for the schedule. Call me if you have any questions about the process - artistic or otherwise.

May you have many opportunities to hear your wise inner voice.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

The New Brew

Bless me blog goddess, for I have been remiss. It's been more than a year since my last posting. It's not that I wasn't thinking about you - I really was. It's been a rough one - for me and everyone else, it seems.

I thought we were gulping big chunks of change back THEN. Little did we know. One day at a time has been compressed to one moment at a time. My new mantra has become: In this moment, I am loved. In this moment, I am safe. In this moment, I am supported. And you know what? It's true. That simple, and still a mighty challenge sometimes.

Making art helps. Friends who let you cry are invaluable. A purring cat on my lap can turn the light in my heart back on.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Change is in the Air

Yup - change seems to be in the air, and we're all gulping great quantities of it. There are some people who relish change and jump right into new circumstances without a second thought. I am one of those who prefer the changes imposed upon me to proceed slowly and easily. But when I decide on something - I want it NOW! Of course, I'm married to a man who will not purchase anything until he has a 2" thick folder of research, but would move to another state at the drop of a hat. Opposites attract, and balance each other out. ** So we are adjusting to changes in health and finances and circumstances, and doing the best we can, like everyone else. The wisdom of AA comes to mind - One Day at a Time.
My creative juice flow has changed too - and that is to be expected. Yes, I'm painting, albeit infrequently, and with unsatisfying results. There's something else being cooked up in the backroom of my mind, and it's just not ready for the light of day yet. In the spiritual practice of creativity, this is the "having faith in the Mystery" part. Faith is like a life jacket - it will only keep you afloat in the rough waters if you had it in the boat when you left shore.
My left brain has lots of reasons to be frustrated - my gallery wants more paintings, my bank account wants more money, my productivity is ridiculously low. My left brain would fire me if it was my boss. My right brain is blissfully unaware of the bad performance review, is doing its thing in solitude, and will let me know when it's done. Being the boss of both of them is quite the management challenge, putting all my leadership skills to the test. If I ever need to get a "real" job again, I'll be sure to put this on my resume.
Keeping everything in perspective, here's a poem from our Poet Laureate, Billy Collins, called While Eating a Pear -
After we have finished here,
the world will continue its quiet turning,
and the years will still transpire,
but now without their numbers,
and the days and months will pass
without the names of Norse and Roman gods.
Time will go by the way it did
before history, pure and unnoticed
a mystery that arose betwen the sun and the moon
before there was a word
for dawn or noon or midnight,
before there were names for the earth's
uncountable things,
when fruit hung anonymously
from scattered groves of trees,
light on the smooth green side,
shadow on the other.
May your changes be just as you like them, but keep your life jacket with you just in case...
**Speaking of opposites, today is the birthday of both the Dalai Lama and George W. Bush. Happy birthday also to my friend and fellow artist, Odile Nicolette!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Take me Down to Paradox City

A wise woman said last night "Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time."

This morning, two friends were discussing boundaries and how they impacted their art making. One hates putting time restrictions on that "magic" time of creating art. The other argued that boundaries always exist, and actually help the creative process. They're both right. And that's not the only paradox that making art presents. (And you know, when I talk about creating art, I'm talking about creating your life as well.)

Today I'm thinking about mistakes - the things you're never supposed to make, but can lead to the most delightful creations. The mandala above started out as a traditional Tibetan design, with paint and appliqued paper. I started in the center, and cut some lace paper in a lotus leaf shape, but when I put it on the canvas, the lace paper wouldn't do what I wanted it to. I kept trying, but when I looked at the result, it had more of a hand-made "quilty" feel than a symmetrical, precise look.

So here's the choice point. Get frustrated, rip off the paper, try to get it right next time, OR see what wants to happen and go with it. I decided to go with the quilt idea and had more fun with this mandala than I had had in a long time, because it was new and surprising and I wasn't sure what would come next.

I'm imagining that there was a band of outrageously fun-loving and absolutely loving angels hovering around me, watching me try to put my "precise" lotus petals into place, and cheering "Screw up! Go ahead! Really mess it up! You have no idea what fun it will be if you drop that silly idea of yours and just let loose."

If you've seen my mandalas, you know I love precision and detail, and you'll also see that every once in awhile, I'll do an abstract one, to play and have fun. Some don't turn out at all, but no matter - it was not wasted time.

Friday, December 1, 2006

Getting your (creative) groove on

Remember those song lyrics - "If it feels good, do it; do it if it's what you feel"? Good advice for getting those creative juices flowing. I know it works for some people to commit themselves to sitting at their desk, easel, keyboard, or whatever at a certain time, for a certain time, but that has never worked for me. When I force myself to "be creative," I produce lousy, stilted pieces and I feel lousy while doing it. Then I paint over the piece later.

What works better for me is if I wait, no matter how long, for some sort of inspiration to arise (i.e., not panicking and telling myself that "if I were a real artist, I would ...fill in the blank.") That is honoring "feminine" energy - the idea or the feeling of something wanting to be expressed. Then the "masculine" energy can come in and get it done. It doesn't work so well to have the masculine energy dictate that something must be created and created NOW. (Do all women dislike being told what to do?)

Masuru Emoto - the Japanese scientist featured in the movie What the Bleep shows how water crystals exposed to certain words and phrases change their shape. Crystals exposed to "do it" are misshapen and flat, while crystals exposed to "let's do it" look like pretty little snowflakes. It makes sense, then, that a painting "forced" into existence would look (and feel) different than one "invited" into existence.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Amazing - I was searching for my blog, but found instead a poet from Cleveland who had posted this mandala of mine along with a new poem - just yesterday! His name is Don Iannone - go to
Connections, rippling out into cyberspace - I feel amazed and humbled at it all.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

A New Era

Wow - who knew I could figure out how to start up a blog. You have no idea what something like this takes for a not-very-technically-savvy girl. But hey - I've always said that my paintings were like children, and evidently they have hit that age where they want more social contact. So, in lieu of a MySpace page for each of them...

Guess we'll see what wants to happen here. I don't know why, but I had a sudden memory of getting onto the Adventureland Jungle Boat Cruise at Disneyland - a mixture of excitement, fun, and that bit of nervous twittering in the back ("are you sure we won't get caught in that waterfall") Whee! Fake hippos, very bad punny jokes. This is going to be fun!

Art-wise, had to post my "first-born" mandala. Looks pretty with the lime green background, methinks.

Anchors away!