Friday, April 30, 2010

Be Inspired

i captured this photo in my wanderings around the salton sea last month. the dilapidated remains of this waterfront home had survived both fire and flood. my heart felt heavy as i wandered through what had likely been someone’s dream home and saw the pieces left behind – shoes, clothing, household implements – in varying states of decay.

but someone came along and wrote these words for all of us future curiosity seekers to see.

be inspired??

by this??

it seems so incongruous, but it got me thinking…

where do we get our inspiration – the inspiration to write, to connect, to create, to produce something totally new?
it’s not always from the happy parts and the “niceties” of life. it’s the other stuff – the stuff that causes us to struggle, the stuff that stretches us in new directions, the stuff that we look for ways to clarify – that gets us thinking, questioning, reaching out, and often – creating.

so wherever you are in your journey today, use your circumstances – just as they are – to create….. BE INSPIRED!!!!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Alternative Points of View

that's the name of the new show that my photoarts group will be hanging this weekend.  the subtitle is alternative concepts and techniques.  the idea is to showcase unusual photographic processes - stuff like infrared, polaroids, various emulsions, light painting, etc.  at first i wasn't going to enter, because, after all, my photography is pretty traditional for the most part and doesn't really fit the theme of alternative. 

but it got me thinking.  i've been trying to find a way to incorporate photos into collage and it's been a struggle to end up with something that i'm pleased with.  so i signed up at the 1 or 2 piece level, but guess what - i ended up with 6 pieces!

 this is a set of (prints of) polaroid manipulations done with the old SX70 film just before they stopped making it.  it was a sad day for those of us just getting excited with how you could actually manipulate the colors and textures in these polaroid prints before they were set and dried.

this one is a photo collage.  the words of the bring me back poem are written on the prints and they are overlaid on the bigger print.

these 2 are photo weaves.  each image is printed twice, then cut and actually woven together.

and finally a collage with photos.  the little piece at the top came last.  it's a collage that contains scrap pieces from the photo weaves.  it's official title is "no waste".

so i've been busy!!  and i have new ideas for even more stuff.  wouldn't just a couple more hours in every day be nice??

anyway, it looks to be a very interesting show - about 15 of us are participating - now let's keep our fingers crossed for a few sales!!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Good-bye to the Rain??

i've been thinking about this post for a while - i keep thinking it's the last of the rain. we really only have 2 seasons here in southern cal - warm and cool. during part of the cool season it rains - usually january and february. by early april it's about run its course and that's it for the year. literally. no more. it becomes a dried up desert around here.

this year is different, however.  because of el nino, the rain just keeps on comin.  i'm loving this.

not only do i really love constantly changing skies, but i especially love that little window of time when the rain has stopped (and won't get my camera wet!).....

but the drops are still dripping....

it's especailly cool when the sun starts peeking out and lighting up all those drops....


(more rain predicted on wednesday!)

Thursday, April 22, 2010

R & R Cards

i've been having fun with these little cards.  the r&r stands for "refresh and remind".  i've been giving them away, tucking them inside of cards, etc.  but i thought i would try selling them for a buck apiece, with quantity discounts, at an earth day festival i am participating in this weekend.

i mean, where can you get something for a buck these days??

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

13 Years

i played the piano today in your memory

you’d’ve been proud that i still remembered how
it’s been 13 years
since we said our last good-byes
did i even say good-bye?
i was so stunned to be in the presence
of one leaving the earth
i didn’t know quite how to react
i didn’t grab you and hug you
and tell you not to go
i knew it had to be
that this part of your journey was drawing to a close
that things were just following their natural course….

the tears still come easily

if i let myself go back to that place
tears not so much of sadness really
but of some indefinable emotion
toward a life built of so much goodness,
innocence even....
you didn't seem to have the capacity
to begin to understand or relate to
the evils of the world
i'm sad to say that they have not improved
in the last 13 years
and sometimes i think it's best
that you made your exit when you did

no, we didn’t always see eye to eye

but i never doubted for a second
that that goodness was there
hidden beneath layers of life’s messy ordinariness
buried like an anchor
keeping the ship of our lives together
from drifting too far off course

sometimes i don’t feel worthy
of all that goodness and innocence
maybe that’s why i’m crying

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Butterflies and Baby Elephants

i've been trying to take some kind of little field trip/photoshoot each week.  i feel incredibly fortunate to live in an area where i have a lot of choices pretty much year-round. and also incredibly fortunate, after working since the age of 15, to have the freedom to do it during the week!  this past week took me to the wild animal park at the tailend of the yearly butterfly exhibit.

what is it about butterflies??  their intense color?

their elusiveness?

or the fact that their teeny-tiny delicate body parts are in such contrast to their huge wings??

i just know that i'm really drawn to them and was pretty much in awe of this whole experience.

  but that's not the end of the story.  while i was there i found out that a baby elephant had just been born something like 36 hours ago!

yup - this little guy weighed in at about 265 pounds (that's a big baby!!).  he was still a little wobbly and stuck really close to mom, but pretty amazing to watch!!  the one born on valentine's day was cavorting all over the place and another one is due in about a month.  so cool!!!

i guess spring is busting out all over the place!!!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Truth, Beauty and Wisdom

"if we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly,
our whole life would change"     buddha

before i say another thing, i have to shout a huge THANK YOU to those who stopped by and offered me such lovely thoughts of support and encouragement after my last post. It really means more than you could ever know - i am so lucky to have all of you in my life!!!

as i’m sure i’ve mentioned before, i need a lot of reminders (is it just me??) yes, sometimes i even forget my own words. as i’ve stated right here in my profile, i’m on a constant search for truth, beauty and wisdom. the reality is that truth can be brutal. sometimes beauty seems very far away. and wisdom? it seems that most often that comes from dealing with the hard, icky, nasty, down-and-dirty stuff of life. so there you have it. it’s not always pretty and it’s not always fun.

i’ve been wondering lately where joy fits into this equation. because isn’t that what we really want? what good are truth, beauty and wisdom if there is no joy??  i think, for me, the reason that i chose those 3 words is because they do bring me joy. most of the time. it's not a perfect formula, but then, i'm not sure that there is such a thing.

there are good parts to having "down days" (or down weeks).  not only does it help us to appreciate the good ones, but it gives us empathy for others who may be in the same boat.  and we all feel better when we are not alone in our boats, right?  i know i do  - thanks for jumping in my boat and paddling along side of me!!   have a joy-ful monday!!!

"all that we are is the result of what we have thought. the mind is everything. what we think, we become" buddha

Friday, April 9, 2010

A New Day

my first title for this post was “major funk” because, truly, that’s what it’s about. and for no good reason. ok, it hasn’t been the best of weeks. my gym suddenly closed down with no warning, my oven died (permanently, i think) with the muffins ready to pop in and property taxes and income taxes are both due. but, it didn’t feel like those things were really the triggers. i mean, life is full of that kind of stuff and we just deal with it and keep going, right?

i think this was more of a creative funk. i started out yesterday feeling scattered – so many projects – i couldn’t focus. the negative thoughts started circling around my head and totally took over. before i knew it, i was actually wallowing in them. my projects, my work, my self, my life, nothing was safe from this onslaught of negativity. nothing sounded interesting or enticing. i read a few blogs but was only annoyed by how well everyone else seemed to be doing.

my heart actually felt heavy. it’s scary being in this place, not knowing how long it’s going to last and feeling powerless to get out of it. it was déjà vu to how i felt shortly after i lost my job, but that was last year and i’ve been doing so much better. i’ve never had to deal with real depression, but i do get it – this kind of funk carried on for a while could be absolutely debilitating.

this morning, i was a bit reluctant to leave my dreams, not knowing what the day would bring. i awoke to heavy fog, which i thought was fitting. i took my little camera on my walk, having spotted some intriguing flowers yesterday.

after i shot the flowers, i started noticing how cool the fog looked and i started shooting that. as it started to lift and burn off, the light broke through and it felt like the perfect metaphor for my feelings. as i was busy shooting the light, i could feel light penetrating my spirit. and in a really serendipitous manner, the perfect songs seemed to come up on my ipod shuffle.

not sure if i’m totally out of the woods yet or if i am, why did this happen and how did it go away??  haven't really figured that out yet.   anyway, back to the title. i decided to go with something positive. it’s a new day.