Thursday, February 28, 2013

Following my own Path...

ok, i have to admit…. i’ve been distracted lately.  as much as i know in my heart the futility of comparing myself with others and their successes and accomplishments and even teach in my classes about how to avoid this….it still happens.  and much as i try to talk myself out of it and try to avert my attention sometimes my thoughts go in obsessive spirals that i seem powerless to control.

a few things that help:

just knowing what i explained above.  i’m not alone in this – it’s a common artist pitfall.  it’s temporary.  i can move on.  it’s happened before.  it will likely happen again.

 getting out and reaching out to others.  my problems seem like a joke in light of what many others are dealing with.  in this case, working with my inside out girls and seeing their enthusiasm has really helped. 

 getting out in nature and letting my thoughts clear.  i went hiking yesterday to torrey pines.  when i sat down at the beach and picked up my pen, these are the words that immediately came to me: “follow your own path”.  so simple and something i already know so well, but the reminder was what i needed.  no one else’s path is right for me.  what they are doing and accomplishing does not concern me (other than to congratulate them and wish them well.) 

 so for me, specifically, (my path) this means:

·         be with nature, deeply, and learn from its messages

·         find inspiration in my own life and the things and people around me and use that in creating

·         work with women, locally, specifically those who are not experiencing the joys of creativity, even if that means a class of 2 people because that is who needs to be there.

·         realize that all the time and effort and enthusiasm i have put into projects that have “fallen flat” is not wasted.  it is energy that will be of value sometime in some way.

the last one is the hardest for me to do.  sometimes i wholeheartedly believe that…. but other times…. well, let’s just say it’s a big challenge.  thanks for listening…

Thursday, February 21, 2013


it’s hard for me to receive....

 to put myself in that vulnerable place
of emptiness

 to truly trust in these moments of quiet
that i will be gifted

 that words, insights and ideas will be presented to me
that it’s out of my control

 that i only need to show up
and practice silence

that the rest is out of my hands

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Your Gifts to the World

“may my ashes, when you have them, friend,
and give them to the ocean,
leap in the froth of the waves,
still loving movement,
still ready, beyond all else,
to dance for the world.”
mary oliver

what do you hope to give to the world?
it’s a challenging question, to be sure.
one that has crossed my mind many times but i have yet to come up with a solid definitive answer…

 of course, we all want to leave love and compassion and positive acts of goodness and many will leave their children, in whom they have invested their ultimate hopes and poured their very hearts and souls into.

but we also, all of us, have the opportunity to leave the fruits of our creativity.  whether  it be painting, poetry, music, dance or any of the other myriad forms of creative expression, what we create is totally unique and is our gift to the world.  it is lasting.  it will outlive us.  it has the possibility to have an impact on future generations.  a little bit sobering.  and exciting.  i love that idea. 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

LOVE comes in many forms

Keep love in your heart. 
 A life without it is like a sunless garden when the flowers are dead.
Oscar Wilde

i was going to elaborate, but i think in this case, simple is better. keep love in your heart.  no matter what.  that about sums it up, don’t you think?

and it does come in many forms.  be on the lookout (especially this time of year).  you will be amazed at where you can find a little bit of love.  then grab it.  and keep it in your heart.  and spread it around.

i had my students write yesterday about what they love and the answers were as diverse as the girls themselves.  here are some of them with their love-inspired journal pages.  good stuff!

keep it goin, my friends.  and have a wonderful love-filled valentine's day!!!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Photography as Metaphor

Reaching higher

i love metaphor
like when rilke says “one moment your life is a stone in you, and the next, a star”
or mary oliver talks about “the fires and the black river of loss”
or “the generous pocket of his silence” that billy collins refers to



i’m always struck deeply by these creative comparisons and when i write poetry i’m always hoping that some powerful metaphors will be gifted to me.

looking up
photography is full of metaphor as well.  a single image can convey so many levels of meaning.  i’m practicing with this more and more as i post images on instagram and try to find just a few words that will deepen the meaning that is communicated 

life's journey

next week i am teaching the 2nd session of my contemplative photography class and it’s all about metaphor.  i’ve put together a presentation that contains some of these images, but i know i am only scratching the surface here…. i can’t wait to see what the other ladies come up with with their own images.  very powerful stuff!

reaching out

 p.s. we are slowly getting things back together over here, but still have projects to do... definitely cuts into my creative time, but it's all good!