A Sacred Life

A Sacred Life

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Friday, June 22, 2007

I noticed an abundance of flowers on my lipstick plant. I have this in my Fame and Reputation area. A place where red is a good color to have. I used to joke with a friend of mine that whenever this plant bloomed, he would call, giving me another job to do. Well, job opportunities are abundant right now and these flowers are blooming! I think this is the most I have seen on this plant.

When I originally bought the plant, it was flowerless and the seller told me it did not have flowers. WRONG. It has the most beautiful flowers and gets it's name by the way the flower comes up out of this tube.

These two are about to bloom.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Winding up the mural

Looking at the houses from this perspective, I know what needs to be altered. I could keep adding on, but I am at a point when I have to wind up this project. They want me to paint the walls of the hallway and framing the doorways as well. I have some ideas for that. This is going to be one cool school!! This has got to be one of the best "gigs" I have done. I love when people give me freedom to paint as I like.
I just signed up for a swap. Skyline swap: houses, etc. on business cards. Perfect. Don't need a lot of space for this one, I have a box of old boring business cards and I am so into the house theme!
Life is good.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Amazing how persistent life is. Given time, plants will creep in anywhere. Every year I watch some day lilies grow throw the asphalt on the side of the building.
I had some some time today to soak in the gorgeous sun. Painted some, but left to give myself enough time to be outside. Perfect!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Rarely red

Some things in life are so loud and scream at you while other things are so subtle, hidden, waiting to be discovered.
Although I really like color, I tend to wear colors that help me blend in. At times I have worn bright or unusual clothing. Something artsey. But, for the most part, I blend. Earthy, muted colors, soft on the eyes, but sometimes just too boring. Rarely do I wear red.
Once in awhile I want to be noticed and I'll wear something that screams out at you. These were those impulse buys that mostly sit in the closet. I have a multicolored jacket in there that I wore walking with John. Fun, and for those times when I want to say "Pay attention to me". Sometimes too much attention.... and lots of comments.
Sometimes I feel I should dress the part of an artist more. What does an artist look like?
Pick your persona.
What part do you want to play today?
Before going to Peru, Mai-Liis and I discussed clothing. Who do we want to be - what "costume" shall we wear... That was intriguing. Travel to a place no one knows you and you can try on all kinds of "personalities".
Maybe it is an age thing. In high school, I had no problem wearing unusual attire. I guess I would fit into the hippie category. Before that was the "greaser" look. Short skirts, lots of makeup.
I had a teacher once that went around the class saying who was the Westchester type, who belonged here and who didn't based on what we were wearing. I had on my worn, torn jeans and funky blazer with appliqued star patches. He said I didn't belong. I proved him wrong.

Now I am all about comfort rather than looks. At least I match. Unlike my father who wore mismatched plaids - pants, socks, shirts. He didn't give a s--t.
Loud has it's place and so does subtle.
I like hidden things, details waiting to be discovered. It shows people are paying attention when they notice the details. The necklace, watch, ring.
Besides, I think it is my art I would like others to notice more than me and what I am wearing. I don't want to be the distraction, at least not yet :-)

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

More images

Now I want one of those macro lens. I would love to get even closer, but there are limits to my camera. Even though, I am having fun with this. Nature and ordinary objects. Some are obvious and others are not, but become pretty abstract. Can you tell what they are? Other pictures on the other blog

Pieces of the ordinary

After reading Robert Genn's article on Miksang http://www.painterskeys.com/ I decided to take my camera with me today.

I did not paint, instead I dealt with chores I had been putting off, oil change, getting my mom some more pants and some paints that I needed for the mural.

Taking my camera to my mom's, I found it very grounding, centering and it increased my awareness of textures and composition. As I then traveled to do some other errands, simple things were standing out, that which would have been overlooked at another time.

A laundry basket on the side of the road, the different shades of blue grouped together at the gas station, patterns of the everyday that we rarely take notice of.

Robert Genn says in the article:

"The art of Miksang was begun as a meditational tool by Shambhala Buddhists, but it has implications for painters and other creative people. The idea is to find joy and awareness by attending to the minor and seemingly insignificant--the colours, patterns and textures that exist in the close-up world. Miksang is a Tibetan word that means "good eye." Shambhalas think widespread use might lead to more compassionate and enlightened societies."

It is a way of becoming intimate with that which surrounds you.

Zen master, John Daido Loori has a book of images called Hearing with the Eye of similar type images.

These are images that take something ordinary and make it holy or sacred.

One sees with new eyes with this practice. It grounds you. It brings joy to see with a new attitude, a fresh perspective.

What are you carrying?

What can I release? What is it that I am carrying around that I no longer need and can let go of?
Not just the material things, but the beliefs that I have that are worn out. Just there for the sake of habit. Thoughts that I revert to because they have always been there.
I am feeling a need to lighten the load.
If I took those ideas, beliefs, possessions and put them out on the street like the ladies in Peru, who would want them? Who would place a value on them and think them worthy of having them for themselves?
Would I even want to expose them. Would I rather keep them wrapped up in the illusion of being important... or is it just that they are so familiar that I hold them sacred.
When do they become burdens? When our shoulders become heavy and slouch, feeling as if we are carrying the weight of the world.
I wish to stand straight and tall, free from heaviness and attachment, with my shoulders back and my heart open.
When we become care-takers of so much stuff, it takes a lot of our time and attention.
We dust off our possessions as well as our thoughts. Maintaining it all by washing and drying, watering the plants, change the oil, check the brakes, defragment your computer, clean out the refrigerator, wash the windows...
Are my ideas workable? What value do they hold for myself and others? How can I improve my income? my relationships? my spiritual life?
We carry it all. Sometimes we are lucky enough to share it with someone.
But how much is too much? When do we know we have reached our limit - gone past that point of having so much- that we cannot keep up with maintaining it all.
I want to appreciate what I have, not begrudge the fact that I have another thing added to my list in a long day of responsibilites and obligations.
So, what do I let go of? What do I release?
Needless worry. Clothes I will not ever wear again. (Even if I think I will recycle the fabric)
As I look around, I see things from my past that hold sentiment and I will not release those. An old wooden music toy that Jake had when he was 2 or 3. Lots of books, some of which I can let go of. Objects gathered for various reasons - these will stay. They are comforting.
More important to let go of are worn out ways of thinking. Unconscious patterns of behavior. Judgements. Old beliefs that have been inherited by our ancestors, carrying them with us even if they hold no meaning for us.
I wonder if we, humanity as a whole, let go of our excessiveness, would come to appreciate the simple things more. Walk on the earth. (leave your car at home) Have face to face conversations. (leave your cell phone home) Listen to each other with an open heart. (without television interruption.)
Could we, would we lay our wares out for all to see? What are we willing to release, to let go of? What are we willing to expose?

Tuesday, June 12, 2007


I always feel so much better the next day upon awakening when the day before was one of those full days. I don't mind a day to be full, but I was pulled in so many directions that I felt my energies scattered. Pulled to the four corners of the earth. That is how it feels. STRETCHED.
The problem is that I get so depleated, I fall into "I don't care" mode. Not good. That is in the past. I am in the NOW.
It is the last week of classes for me. We ended with this cute project of the kids in their adirondeck chairs - relaxing!
Why is that so hard for me to do. Even in my so called relaxation state, I have to be doing something.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Creative Space

Except for a quick juant to Trader's, I spent most of the day in the artroom. I have not really spent any time there since being back from Peru. Only to go in and out to get things - storage purpose only.
It was only to search for something I knew I had printed out with caused this intense clearing and organizing... still more to do.
I am working at making it work.
My intention is to make sense of where things go. Easy access to what I need. A clear surface area to create on.
The best part of the "cleaning" process is the discovery of new ideas that are triggered by finding things I had forgotten about. I really can "shop" in my own studio :-)
Finding journals, I carry the same theme - how to make this room work. Ideas of where to put things, rearranging certain areas... and then, it ends up with surfaces covered with articles, projects, "stuff I can use", a dumping ground for possibilities.
Even though there is much more to do, I feel I have my room back and it feels great.
Now to go create.........

Friday, June 08, 2007

Another piece of Victor Delfin's work. This one expresses how I am feeling.
How many projects can I feed at the same time?
I realized that some of the information I need for some work I have to do is on my other computer which is buried in the room with my brother's stuff!!!! (he just moved) It would be so much easier to take it off that computer... If I could get at it!
More work. I want to play.
It hit me last night (sleepless in NY) how much work I needed to get done. What was I thinking when I thought we could go into the city this weekend????
Looking at her expression, she seems so "aloof" to me. She's not worrying...It all gets done.
Today I focus on painting :-) Feeding at least one mouth - Manja!

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Taking a day off!

I like the view from above. Although I am afraid of heights (looking straight down or being too close to an edge) I would rather be high on a mountain looking out, taking in the vast distances we normally cannot see.

I don't like the feeling of being closed in. While in White Plains the past weekend, I felt uncomfortable standing by the tall buildings that are being built there. It's a strain on the neck to look up. Do we really need our buildings to be that high. We are so far above the ground, distancing ourselves further and further from the earth. We are losing our groundedness, losing the sense of the earth and it's energy beneath our feet. We walk on concrete rather than the soft feel of earth, soil, mud, grass. Even stone.

Tall buildings block out the sun. It only shows reflections of it on the mirrored windows.

Returning from my trip, I was still filled with energy. Was it because I was so connected to the Earth, surrounded by so much of her beauty, feeling such profound joy at being in touch with her. Walking on her. Feeling her beneath my feet. Allowing her energy to enter me without blockages or seperations. We need to be more connected to her rather than rise so far above her that we can no longer feel or connect with her.

A note to myself: take daily walks on the earth. sit on the grass. walk in the woods. go to the beach.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

In the moutains, there is a face. I had been looking for it in the pictures and yeah, I found it.
Feeling a bit like this donkey today, I really need to let some things go. I dont' want to carry anything unnecessary anymore - physically, emotionally or mentally. Time to purge. Let some things go to allow new things in - ideas, inspirations, and to be able to work in the artroom again!

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

New Window

Time for a new perspective, a shift in ideas, a new view. Time to look out a new window.

Michelle left a message, hearing the disappointment in her voice that she lost the bid on the house. Funny how sometimes you can visualize something so strongly you can almost taste it. Because of that, I was sure we would have the house, but the universe has other plans. So be it.

I have mixed feelings about it. Disappointed, but ready and open for something else. ok. that wasn't it, so what is it?

I'm open, ready and willing to see how this plays out and not really feeling "attached" to it. I like this feeling of having an open heart - open to receive what life has to offer me. I choose to co-create it by choosing the window.

I choose a window of beauty, laughter, and love. A window that will bring joyous surprises! Like this window. One morning we opened it up to see Alpaca "mowing" the lawn!

A window that is clear, opens easily and when I do open it, smell the most wonderous fragrances.

Sunday, June 03, 2007


Mosaics by Victor Delfin. Outside his house and in the bathroom.

I have been collecting mosaic tiles for awhile now, not being sure what I wanted to do with them. I like the idea of adding other things in as well. Stones, glass, broken things. If I didn't rent, I would tile my bathroom shower area, but I won't be able to take it with me, so that is out. I have shelves in the kitchen that I made and like a lot of things around here, is still unfinished. I have a lot of raw, unfinished wood pieces and think this may be just the thing for them.

I need a project :-)

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Tiles that I first saw in Ollantaytambo on the archway of our hotel entrance really captured my fancy... We saw them again in Cusco but very few tiles. Most were mounted and framed. In a restuarant in Barranco, they sold the tiles. They are by Seminario Ceramics and they have a place in Florida as well. Love this stuff :-)

I bought a ceramic mug with a flying woman on it while I was in Maras.

I want to fly.

Friday, June 01, 2007

I am feeling that I need a travel goal, someplace to look forward to. I need to plan another vacation. If I am go go with John, it has to be by land.

Looking at this picture makes me want to cry. I miss it. I want to sit at that table and watch the people walk by and maybe go talk to Je'sus de Jairo again... although this place was not in Cusco, but in Ollantaytampu.

Hey you out there in bloggerland... Where have you been that you would want to go back to??

What is your most favorite place on this Earth? (p.s. no cruises!)

Right now I am living vicariously through Shirley Maclaine and her pilgrimage in Spain - called the Santiago de Compostela Camino.

Leave them alone for a bit and this is what they came up with.

Gotta love them..........