Uniball Pen- Single Pointed Focus

ImageHappy 2014!

Just made my “To Do List” because the things I have to do are adding up and making my mind SWIRL!

Kept my posts to a minimum this past month, as I feel the virtual overload, holiday indulgences and now the endless junk emails on how to lose those accumulated holiday pounds!

It is exhausting when you think of it all.  I feel heavy and overwhelmed…so I journal.

Image

My favorite Uniball pen reminds me- Single Focused, Waterproof, Fadeproof, Vision.  All I have to do is get the pen to paper and get down to business!  Things become clearer.  ACTION Creates Possibilities.

Take a line for a walk, make it thick, thin, curvy or straight.  Add color, texture, mix in a little IMAGINATION and stir.  TRUST what comes up.

What is my VISION?  Not what others want or see, but what is MY vision?  The one that connects with my heart.  I have to close my eyes to see this one. What is brewing around inside my minds eye?  What makes me excited?  What makes me smile? What makes me feel full?  Where do I focus my attention today?

Answer is simple- Find JOY today- one thing-

Finding one thing is easy…Kiss my kids…Do a little sketch…Listen to Music…Sway my hips…Begin…Make Art…

Create my Vision.

Suddenly I feel lighter,   Heigh Ho, Heigh Ho…  Off to work I go.

Can’t wait to see your vision!  

In Creative Spirit,

Michelle

“Vision is the art of seeing the invisible.”— Jonathan Swift

 

 

Advertisements

Learn to Dance in the Rain

IMG_0763

My month has been amazing.  Productive, balanced, Magical really…I am so grateful.

So  here I sit with my starbucks coffee, a handful of yogurt raisins and my journal to help me satisfy my unsettled mind.

Yoga was a must today.  Ground and extend, Center and Grow, Get out of the mind and into the body, Process and eliminate the nonsense.  It has been an amazing month.

I ask myself, “What is my problem?”  Maybe it is “To good to be True”  says the Voice.  I conteract that thought quickly with the affirmation- “I have showed up consistently and the efforts are paying off.”   Be Happy.

The Voice is loud and annoying.  The cycle of self-doubt-a very familiar voice.

Today is different,  a shift has occurred.    The self nourishing voice is speaking a little stronger.  I am recognizing the Ebb and Flow of the Process of Creation.  The question remains, “How can I stay in the Flow?”  I am worried that the waterfall is around the corner and soon I will be at the bottom.  What I have come to realize is the Ebb is the time for rest.  The time to rejuvenate.  The time to paint, have fun and create.  The Ebb/Flow is the natural rhythm of my work.  In Art and in life.

vincent-van-gogh-famous-quote

I recognize I need the whole cycle.  It is not about being unrealistic and happy all the time.  It is about the abilitly to recognize where I am in the cycle.  When the Ebb occurs, can I put my anxieties into action and show up to what is NOW.  My life.  The good, the bad, the happy, the sad.  I will admit the Ebb is not as easy to take as the Flow, but I am so grateful for the ability to FEEL.  I am aware that the Ebb is temporary and necessary for collecting my energy for the next flow to be even Bigger, Higher, Faster, full of Abundance and Creativity.

Bet the next waterfall will be Beautiful and I will be standing at the base looking up FEELING JOYFUL, with a smile on my face.

5593952089_c893e08e06_z

Namaste,

Michelle

MIND THE GAP

Image

I LOVE travel.  Small things always stick with you.  Today I remembered the saying “Mind the Gap”.

More than a few years ago, on a trip to London, England, was where I first heard the saying “Mind the Gap”.

“Mind the Gap” is a warning to train passengers to take caution while crossing the gap between the train door and the station platform.  The voice played over and over again.  The message was clear.  Pay attention.

The voice did not say “Do not Cross” or “Stay on your side of the line”.  It just reminded you to be mindful when you cross.

It is hard to step on the train with one foot.  The end result would be a physical disaster.  Split in two- not a pretty sight.

Yet in my life the things I really LOVE, I carefully place one foot in.  Soon, I begin to feel split in two.  Trying to be the best at everything ( gift and curse of a perfectionist) eventually not doing anything well and feeling drained and frustrated.  The other foot I leave in familiar territory, my comfort zone.  The place I know well.  Even when this place is no longer serving me, I feel safe here.  This split causes me great suffering.  It is hard to be pulled in many directions.

This summer I spent a few days alone in Victoria, wondering what I was doing there.  Reminding myself that I was there to take time for me.  So I sat on a rock for 4 hours in contemplation.  With an amazing view of the ocean.

Image

I realized that I needed to JUMP.  Both feet in!  What would that feel like?

As a child swinging off a rope into a safe pond-Jumping is exhilarating!  As an adult with responsibilities and preconceived ideas of what is right and accepted…the thought scares the crap out of me…Yet I suffer.  Complain…excuses, always excuses…all to familiar with this pattern.  Not going there.  I realize to end the suffering I need to jump into my life fully committed.  Good thing I was wearing my purple favorite Nikes.  JUST DO IT.

Image

It was in that moment that I decided to just step fully into my authentic life.  Stop hanging on to the edge.  Let go.  Be Clear-Set my intentions.  Be my own captain.  Steer my ship.

Mind the Gap.  Eventually to get to your destination you must step on the train.  With BOTH feet.  It is not that scary when you have someone to walk with.  We can lean on each other.

Let’s walk together….

Michelle

“There are always two choices. Two paths to take.  One is easy.  And its only reward is that it’s easy.”  ~ Unknown

Art Camp 2013-Conquering Fears

First Annual Art Camp 2013

You teach what you need to Learn… Nothing like spending 4 Days,  28 hours with 8 pint sized artists 7-11years old…

Will I survive?? Heck ya!  I get to be a child again.  I was up everyday early, excited like a kid on Christmas morning.

The girls arrived each day a little earlier.  That is a good sign.  They are COMMITTED!

Number ONE skill to have as an artist.  Discipline, Commitment and a LOVE of ART is key to leading a creative life. We began the day with Yoga.  Finding our breath, looking inward, grounding and connecting.  Day 1- they can barely stay still vs Day 4- when half way through class they asked, “When is the story coming?  When can we lie down and rest.  That is my progress…

IMG_0189

“What next?”  Favorite question of the day (Actually this question is on constant replay)

“Art is next,” I reply.    We played with watercolor, pastel, acrylic, sketching, printing.

Creating our Masterpieces with intention.

IMG_0284IMG_0945

What I loved most was the sense of community.  We had guests come share their expertise.  Jesse the Fire Twirler, Jay the Balloon Artist and Shauna the Prayer Flag Artist all helped to empower the kids to believe in themselves.   Providing a space to create with freedom, teaching them to share, watching the fears set in.  Balloon twisting and popping struck a few nerves.  Does that fear ever go away??

IMG_0235IMG_0275 IMG_0174

Bike riding was a challenge that I was not quite expecting.

All was going well- until the first BIG HILL…

Top of the hill

T: “The hill looks so BIG!  I am scared!”

M:  “It’s ok, just take your time, go slow.  Use your brakes.  YOU CAN DO IT!” Bottom of the hill

T: “ I DID IT!  It wasn’t that bad, I am proud of myself.”  I smile.

Off we go…then I hear sssssssszzz.  I stop smiling.

T:  “Michelle, Something is wrong with my bike.”

M:  “It’s a flat tire-oh boy.”  My challenge.  We are far away from home- no tire tube.

T: “What are we going to do?”

M:  I pause, “Lets go play and sketch at the river.”  Truth is I need to think about this one.

We all had a great time at the river.  Cooling off, playing with dogs.  It was 37 degrees.  Time to get back.  Little 7 yr old trouper artist, pushed her bike over 5 km home.  Not a tear shed- I was so proud of her.  She is a true artist!  Brave, Strong, Committed.   The other girls get a GOLD STAR for their patience and understanding.  Popsicles for all!! IMG_0933

When you have a Fear it is wise to find someone you respect that has walked the path ahead of you.  The teacher can relate, as they have had their own experience.  The unknown is scary. You wonder…Am I good enough?  Will I be accepted?  Will other judge me?   Am I capable?   Very Fearful thoughts indeed.

The teacher has learned through personal experience to challenge those thoughts.

Nourish yourself, have fun, choose Love over Fear, Support others. Be Brave, Be strong, Be authentic.  JUST BE!

In the creative process we take time to look inward- to stir our imagination-to feel what inspires us and turn our inspiration into something we can share.

Together- We MAKE ART!!!!    MAKE ART!!!!   MAKE MORE ART!!!!

It is in the process that we learn to overcome our fears, our self-doubt, have some fun Explore. Inspire and Believe…

 Manifest your Masterpiece.

In Creative Spirit,

Michelle

IMG_0299

“When you face the fear…it loses its power”