Tuesday, October 7, 2014

I Am the One Who Is Creative

I Am the One Who Paints

I created this card last year, just after my birthday. I use it now for my profile picture on facebook. 
It represents a favorite part of myself, the creative, the painter.  Somewhere I read, when I was working
on my BFA, that in ancient Japan it was considered the artist's duty to bring the beauty of nature to
those who had to keep their eyes on the world of commerce and politics, who did not have time to
glimpse it in their day to day life.  I took this to heart. In this card are: Victorian flower images, garden
flowers, forget-me-nots, cans of paint and a painter's brush, Tibetan tanka imagery and colorful South
American painted pottery. These different images represent the idea of memory, the beauty of nature,
(especially flowers), tradition, the joy of color, my spirituality. All these aspects ignite my love for painting
and my sense of responsibility for bringing my ideas/visions/dreams to birth through my art.

I Am the One Who Loves Color
I Am the One Who Loves Nature
I Am the One Who Brings Beauty to Others
I Am the One Who Seeks the Path With Heart
I Am the One Who Trusts Intuition
I Am the One Guided by Spirit

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

SoulCollage: The End of the World (record of process)

Mankind has, in its hands, the power to create or prevent nuclear disaster.

Terrorism, biological disaster, climate change, government surveillance.

Dire predictions by religious fringe groups. Fear of the unknown.

I tend to be a thoughtful but positive person in my day to day life. But I have taught a collage class,
at two different tech schools, called "Technology and Society" for a few years. This course is a 
critical thinking class that asks students to analyze the positive and negative effects of technology, 
since man's first use of tools, on society and the world.  So we have been looking into the news
and marveling at scientific breakthroughs in nano-tech, bio-tech and technology in general. We've
also looked at global and national issues such as global warming, terrorism, problems with disease
and food production.  I think this is where this card came from.  I don't know how many other 
SoulCollage practitioners have a Apocalypse card but now there is one in my deck.  Of course
the classes I have been teaching are not the only reason that this card appeared.

I grew up during the Cold War when the threat of global nuclear annihilation was in the back of 
every one's minds, I think. The Doomsday Clock  was first launched in 1947 by the editors of the
Bulletin of Atomic Scientists. It is currently (as of 2014) at 5 minutes to midnight. The first version
of the card, with the atomic mushroom and human hand holding a stopwatch, relates to my 
"end of the world" fears, both conscious and unconscious, and anxiety about when the world will end.I think that the fear of a nuclear bomb starting the last world war is less of a fear for me than it was when I was young.

The second version of the card includes the shadow of terrorism and also the threat of increasing government intrusion into our day to day lives, related to all kinds of surveillance. In addition this card refers to threats related to climate change (the ice imagery). Other areas of low grade anxiety for me are the many predictions of the coming apocalypse (the stained-glass image of death). Although I do not subscribe to religious fanaticism it is hard not to miss the dire predictions from these groups. Last on this second version of the card is the image of bacteria. Threat of bio-terrorism and the evolution of super-strains of diseases, once in control, as well as new diseases, seems to be the way "life as we know it" might end, rather than fire or disappearing ice.

The final version of this card includes the image of an meteor striking the earth. It represents, for me, the fact that world is far more unknown or uncharted than was thought in the 1950, a time when it seemed that the Utopian "modern world", where science solved all human problems and could manage and control every aspect of life, was right around the corner. At that time science was given a blank check to do its magic and create that wondrous world. I think that most now realize that science is a powerful tool but one that must be welded wisely. And that it is everyone's responsibility to continue to strive for a healthy equatable world. 

Sunday, September 21, 2014

I Am the One Inspired By Elizabeth St. Hillary Nelson

SoulCollage: I Am the One Inspired by Elizabeth St. Hillary Nelson
Collage using Gelli Plate, acrylic paint and deli paper plus images from
Elizabeth's promotional flier and images from her collages

I attended a Paper Painting Collage workshop with Elizabeth the first weekend of September, 2014.
It was so inspiring! As one gets older, I'm told, new experiences become connected to related experiences
from the past.  So this experience took me back to: being in painting school, working with children in
summer recreation programs, a workshop with child book illustrator Ed Young, seeing the paper
cuts of Matisse, as well as reading the wonderful books from Eric Carle when my son was young. 

So great to connect to all those experiences of with a common theme: being playfully creative while
delighting in the pure sensual and intuitive pleasure of making colorful marks. Additionally we traded
bits of paper that workshop participants had painted and worked to assemble our individual collages.
Here is my first collage from that workshop.

First Apple
collage with painted paper

I Am the One Who is Inspired by Elizabeth St. Hillary Nelson
I Am the One Who is a Whimsical Collage Artist
I Am the One Who Remembers Being a Creative Child
I Am the One Who is in Love with Color
I Am  the One Who is a Painter
I Am the One Who  Puts the Torn Pieces Back Together to Make a Better Picture

Friday, March 7, 2014

I Am The One Who Cures the Common Cold

I Am The One Who Cures the Common Cold

This card is about knowing the recipe for finding healing.  This card came together over the period of a
few weeks as I gradually found the various elements brought together here.  The doctor with the very
silly hat was one of the final pieces, and when I found her large, red, clown's nose the card was complete.
So here is the recipe, and no great revelations, but in the time of cold and flu season, when this card was
made, it was a good reminder.
  1. Good humor and general silliness is the best medicine; also seeing the doctor when needed
  2. Exercise (swimmer diving in).  Remembering that exercise supports the immune system
  3. Healthy and warming foods like chicken soup
  4. Balance (yin/yang symbol) which, to me, means a balance between worldly activity and
    contemplative practice
  5. Rest (the guy resting on the couch); also taking time to get better
My favorite part of the card remains the smiling doctor who seems so full of positive regard for anyone
who happens to view this card.  I think I should add that allowing others to love and care for you is an
important factor for health, as well as locating that loving part of ourselves that reminds us to lighten up,
and take time to shine loving compassion on ourselves and our bodies as well as all being around us in the world.