Monday, January 30, 2012

Looking at the World through a Heart Shaped Hole

I'm looking at the world through a Heart Shaped Hole.

I was at a Silent Retreat last weekend. It takes awhile for the words to leak out of one's mind and to reach the place of silence, of before words. What treasures there are when one finally does reach that place!

This little zentangle came from that place. In the Silence, I put pen to paper until this came out. It is called "Looking at the world through a Heart Shaped Hole". I am looking at the world through a heart shaped hole, through eyes of Loving. If "beauty is in the eyes of the beholder", then the whole world is so beautiful when I look at it through eyes of Loving!

I'm working this into a painting on silk, using both raw silk and silk charmeuse. I'm using soy wax(batik)  and pebeo gutta (serti technique) for resists. I plan to applique the heart flower (painted on shiny charmeuse) onto the geometric background (painted on raw silk). I plan to show it at the Vashon  Tea Shop. The show opens February 3rd--this Friday!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Who is my business in service to?

Deana bought one of my scarves
I've been doing a lot of thinking and journaling about my "who": who do I want to work with? who do I want to be around? who is the customer I want to work with? And I'm having a bit of a conflict. If I draw to me people as customers who I enjoy being around, that would be creative, fun people with integrity, compassion, an appreciation for beauty.

In truth, this does seem to  describe the people who buy my hand painted silk scarves. But what do they need? They seem to have it all together.

I have a strong desire for my art to be of service, to reach deep into people's pain and sorrow and do a healing.  I want my art to lift people up and to connect them with the Source of All Joy. However, I have been told-- and part of me believes--that art is a only luxury, for people who can "afford" it. 

That perception, that art is a luxury,  is in direct conflict with my desire to be of real service to people who are hurting.

The truth is that we are all in service to Divine Source. Since we are expressions of the Divine Source, that's where guidance, wisdom, truth, love, and the ability to act comes from.
 Mark Silver, Heart of Business

Thursday, January 19, 2012

What the world needs...

I woke this morning thinking, why am I creating more "stuff"?? Don't we have enough "stuff" in this world?? As an artist, I do create stuff, beautiful stuff, stuff that is both useful and beautiful, but stuff, never the less. Even if I sell everything I make (what artist does? Even the most famous have tons of paintings that haven't sold!)...even if I sell everything I make, I'm putting more stuff into some one else's world.

And how can I make a living as an artist, if I don't make and sell art stuff?

Why do people want stuff? Tara Gentile has some ideas on this, in her Biz Women article "7 myths that make earning ugly". She says:
One thing the recession has taught us is that “stuff” is not enough. People want more than another bauble for their neck or a tchotchke for their shelf. They want something with meaning. They want an experience of your art that changes their perception or triggers a feeling or memory.


Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Portrait of my Business

Who would have thought to draw a portrait of a business? That's what Kelly Rae and Beth Nicholls asked us to do on the second day of Hello Soul Hello business class.  I kind of let go just to see what came out, and here she is. I think her name is HeLaDi--Salish for "having things just right". I wasn't surprised that her power stick (spear? staff?) was heart tipped, or that her hair/head is flowing with ideas and images, but I was surprised to see the super cape-- and where did the dog come from??

I have been feeling very watched over lately. I mean when my car was totalled, I wasn't even scratched! A fraction of a second either way would have been disasterous! So may be that's where the dog protector came from; he is my guardian Angel.  He puts me in mind of my beloved, who liked to think of himself as Bob-Dog.

The very next day we had to identify our superpower. I think mine is the ability to connect with the good in people.

I'll try to link to blog posts showing what my classmates have done with this assignment, as I become aware of them.
Lori Moon
Rachel Payne

Singing Road: phase 2, colors

Time to decide on colors. Sometimes I try several versions, but this seemed right the first time.

Next step apply resist so that I can paint the silk in reds and golds, then steam it.

OK, now how do I put on the black?

I'm having trouble with my computer, uploading my photos, so I can't show you how it looks with the golds and reds over the leaves, but it is stunning!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

The Path Unknown

I've been really really spacey lately. I think it is because my car was totaled and  my computer crashed. My transportation and communication systems were down and my world is still shaking. Email messages have disappeared. And I feel a bit lost about my path from here out. It looks dark and vague from here.

Kelly Rae's Soul Business Class is just what I need now!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Singing Road Phase 1

Some pieces need to age like good wine in the making. This piece, Singing Road, is like that.

I enlarged the 2 1/2" zentangle by 500% early last summer. 
The maple leaf background I did on silk in the heat of summer, when cool shadows were welcome (thence the cool blues and greens). I wanted to give the effect of dappled shadows on a road.

I used big leaf maple and Japanese maple leaves from my own trees, capturing their images by brushing resist on the leaves and silk. Where the leaves blocked out the resist, I brushed on dye. The dye traveled up to where the resist was brushed onto the silk, filling in the shape of the leaves with color.

All fall and through Thanksgiving and Christmas, these pieces hung on the wall, waiting for me to get back to them, while I created lovely hand painted silk scarves for the market.

 Next, the design will be traced onto the silk with washable blue fabric pen.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

The Path not Taken

"two roads diverged in a wood, and I --
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference."

These words from a Robert Frost Poem, "The Road Not Taken", have been a...mmm...touchstone for me since my teen years. I was already taking "the road less traveled", and I still do--at least sometimes. 

Problem is, the road less traveled is often the road less maintained, the one with the most pot holes. Heck, sometimes the road I've taken turns out to be a deer trail that peters off in the wild! Then I have to backtrack and find the my way again. Sometimes I feel like I'm bushwhacking, and boy is THAT frustrating and time comsuming! Or the road disappears and I have no idea where I am going! 

That's what I've been feeling like lately, like the road has disappeared, or maybe it's lost in the darkness and I just can't see it.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

The Song Inside

The Song  Inside

"Singing Road" zentangle
It will be enlarged 500%
for the finished piece
I’m not a singer; people keep asking me not to sing because really, I cannot carry a tune.  But I sing. I love to sing. On the beach when no one is around, in the car when I’m driving by myself, in the house alone. I sing bits of old songs that fit my current life. I sing parts of hymns, songs of praise, made up songs, even made up words (sh, don’t tell). It’s as though the songs sing themselves inside me and sometimes burst out my mouth.

In the fall, I sing “Thank you for the glorious trees, the reds and golds, and the evergreens.” In the winter I sing,  “Thank you for the wind and rain.” When my beloved was dying, the song that sang in my mind was, “got along without you before I met you; I can get along without you now”.

I sing prayers, deep prayers without words in any known language. I sing prayers of love, songs of joy… 

I am traveling on a Singing Road.

Singing Road is the signature piece for a show of my silk paintings at the Vashon Tea Shop in February. It started several months ago as a 2 1/2" zentangle, a small ink drawing of patterns and lines with no definite purpose in mind. It isn’t finished yet, and I want to share with you the process of it’s development in this blog. 

If you would like to follow this process, please subscribe to my blog (become a follower). I will post as the painting develops.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Taking Time at New Years

I do a three day retreat every year. I take time to review the goals I set last year, check to see if my vision is the same, set new goals. I can get quite detailed. Some goals appear again year after year.

This year is different. I set aside time OK, but I have not even looked at last year’s goals. I cleaned house instead! What? Me? Clean house?

I’m clearing the decks for…what?

I don’t have a clear vision of what I want my business to look like. Illustration? I kinda gave up on that when the traditional publishing industry started going belly up and Kindle began to take over. I moved away from watercolor landscapes years ago; I have no faith that wall art will create an income for me. I love painting on silk, and again wonder if there is really a market for lit.  I love creating hand painted silk scarves, yet that has never felt like the whole picture.

How can I bring all that I am, all that I have experienced, all that I know, into my art in a way that speaks to something deep in people, that tells their story as well as my own? How can I create art that meets a need deep enough to exchange it for the material things I want in my life?

I keep thinking that if I dig deeply enough, the answer will come, and I’ll have a complete vision to work toward. Instead, my future seems hidden in a slowly rising mist. Little by little, through trial and error, little bits and pieces are revealed.

There is a Quaker saying, “Proceed as Way opens.” I think that applies here.