Thursday, March 24, 2011

Can I just say... very much I am in the place of LOVING this (in a sing-song voice) with this page?

This is page 2 of the fabric book I am working on and I am so happy to have finished it today!  It's fabulous!  I love everything about this page.  I love how well the materials came together to beautifully illustrate this part of the poem I wrote.  I love that I showed up and allowed my Creator to pull this out of me.  I love the colors, the ones that are faded and the ones that pop.  I love the fabric that I painted for the wings and the beads.  I love the dimension of it and how things pop off the page, which you can see a little better in this next pic.

And I think my favorite part are the clay faces.  I saw them in my head and when they were done they turned out far better than I had imagined.  I even love what didn't work out and how I decided to go with it and that I loved the result anyway.  It reminds me of life, how some things don't work out like I expect but if I trust the Universe, have faith in my Creator, and just allow it all to be what it is, it ends up working out.

This project is so personal for me because it is what I'm walking right now.  For most of my life I listened to the voices of the past, the voices of "others" who told me what I "should" do and who I "should" be.  They told me who I was and I chose to believe them because I didn't know better.  Now I am in a place where I do know better.  A place where I'm  no longer allowing myself to be led around by the voices of those "others."  I am in a place where I am choosing to listen to my Inner Voice, that still quiet Inner Guidance because that is the only voice that knows what is best for me because it is the voice of my Higher Power.  There are so many people in life who think they know what is best for us, who have all of these perceptions and beliefs about life, that aren't true by the way, and that they feel it necessary to impose upon us.  Those people don't know what is good for me.  They don't know what is in the interest of my Highest good.  And since I stopped "shoulding" all over myself and allowing others to "should" all over me and started listening to that wisdom within me, life has gotten increasingly better.

This process of exercising my creative muscles everyday, of letting Divine Inspiration flow through me, of mixed media poetry illustration, is beyond amazing.  I have so much gratitude for being able to do this, of being given this gift of passion for creativity.  I am truly blessed!  

Saturday, March 19, 2011

what i've been up to this week...

I have been SO inspired this week!!  donna downey has been doing an inspiration week on her blog and the project she’s doing is absolutely beautiful!  If you are a lover of all things creative, I encourage you to go check it out.  She has inspired most of my creativity this week and I am loving every bit of it!  I made a fabric book back in January, I think?  The book itself was inspired by a canvas book that donna did which you can find here.  The subject of my book, which is “FLY,” is very much inspired by where I am at right now.  This healing journey has been amazing for me and I’m very much at a place where I am cutting the ties that bind me to the ground of other people’s beliefs about me so that I can fly.  I want to spread my wings and soar and just be who I am, be who I was created to be, instead of trying to stuff myself into the box of other people’s beliefs about who I “should” be.  I did that for most of my life and it's no longer acceptable to me.  This is the cover, which I did in January.  The binding is latch hooked with denim and pieces of fabric, inspired by traci bautista in her book "Collage Unleashed."  
In February I wrote this poem about flying and trusting the voice of my inner guidance and higher self.  While I was working on the first page of this book, it, the poem flashed in my head, a message that it, too, needed to be part of this creation.  I love the whole process of creativity, it reminds me of life.  I had an idea and tried it but it didn’t quite work out like I expected.  But instead of allowing that to stop me in my tracks, I flowed with it because I wanted to see where it would take me and I absolutely LOVE it!  It makes me smile! 

It brings me joy and brought me joy while I was creating it and really, isn’t that part of what creating is all about?  Create for the sheer joy of it because there’s a passion for it in your soul, because you can’t imagine life without it, because it is such an integral part of who you are that it pains you not to do it.  With each discovery and each new layer it reveals more to you about itself, about who and what the creation is supposed to be.  It’s an awe inspiring process.  I want to stay immersed in it and use it to serve.  I want to inspire people, help people heal, touch their lives and share beauty with the world because I have a passion to use my creativity to do those things.  This week I’ve been reflecting about that.  Using my art to do those things is great but I’m feeling like a need a more focused direction.  How do I want to use my art to do those things?  I’ve put the question out to the Universe and my Creator and I trust it will be shown to me.  At the same time I’m wanting to exercise my creative muscles more and more, to allow my Creator to pull out that which lies deep within me.  I’m not sure I really have a style, a method of creating that says “me.”  And I know that’s okay because it’s all part of the process.  But I also know that the only way to do that is to exercise those creative muscles, to create every day, to show up and allow Divine Inspiration to flow through me.  While everything that I have created carries a piece of me, this fabric book is perhaps the most personal thing I’ve created because it deeply touches where I am at right now.  Aside from my poetry, that is, because my poetry has almost always reflected where I’m at, unless it was written for someone else.  That’s another thing I love about this fabric book is that it incorporates my poetry that I have tried to do with greeting cards as well but it’s just not the same thing.  While there may be some wonder and restlessness about where I’m headed, because I just want to start heading there, I realize that I am heading there right now.  I am exactly where I am supposed to be as a spiritual being and as an artist.  I am growing and so is my art, evolving and changing with each creation I put my heart and soul into.  And honestly, I don’t want to be so caught up in where I’m headed that I miss where I am because this is truly an amazing place to be.  I am so grateful that I have this time, to create, to be inspired, to grow and evolve, to go where ever the Divine winds take me.  And I trust that.  I love the journey, this journey, this breath, this moment because it won’t ever be here again.  And really, it’s all about the journey.  So I’m going to take a deep breath, remember that I trust my Creator and the Universe, and I'm going to show up at my creative workspace and allow the Divine forces to flow through me.  There is beauty in the breath of this moment because I chose to see it and be a part of it.  

Saturday, March 12, 2011

And the next part of my journey begins with a step forward in faith...

There is this passion that I have for creating art, this fire lit within me by my Creator.  It truly is a gift, this giggly-feel-good-God-space and I absolutely love it!!!  It’s a place where the world melts away and my whole body relaxes and I am connected to something so much bigger than me or this world I live in.  And it’s not just about creating art, it’s about touching people’s lives and inspiring people through my art and through this process of creativity and life.  I started this creative journey in 2002 making cards and quickly progressed to making journals.  Over the years my creative interests have expanded into using paint, making jewelry, sewing, mixed media, pretty much anything creative.  From the moment I fell in love with it in 2002  I came up with the slogan: touching people’s lives one creation at a time.  I knew that with my creativity (at that point I certainly would not have called myself an artist) I wanted to have a profoundly positive effect on people.  I wanted my creativity to reach in and tap on their soul, for my work to move them in the most amazing way.  Although I didn’t quite understand at the time that I wanted to inspire people, my spirit did because I wrote:  may you dream the most amazing dream, and from that dream create something so profound, as to inspire others to dream, create and inspire.

So much has happened over the past nine years.  I struggled with my creativity, my life, and myself as I found myself lost in the grips of addiction and dealing with my own darkness.  I’d go through periods where I’d create these beautiful things and then I wouldn’t touch anything creative for a while, sometimes weeks, sometimes months.  I’d have that desire to create, that wanting to so badly, but I wouldn’t allow myself to.  Only by the grace of my Creator, I walked out the other side of that self constructed forest of darkness and began to heal.  An amazing process of unpeeling the layers of garbage from my soul, releasing, letting go, self analyzing, and discovering who I really am.  The past 22 months have been the most incredible experience for me and I am beyond grateful.  I continue to do the work and life continues to get better and better.  After doing all of that work, imagine my surprise when I found myself struggling again with my creativity.  In a final moment of frustration I realized that if I was frustrated, that meant I was trying to figure it out instead of letting it flow and at that moment I surrendered it to my Creator and the Universe and asked, “Show me what I’m missing please?”  My prayers were answered when, through a string of thoughts and events, I realized that I was still trying to fit being an artist into a box labeled “socially acceptable” without even realizing I was doing it.  The struggle was caused by those conflicting parts of me, the one that knew I was supposed to be creating, and the one that was trying to be an artist that everyone would accept.  Craziness I know.  I let go of all of those thoughts and made a conscious decision to be a professional artist and to decide for myself what that meant because I could really care less about being “socially acceptable.”  I was no longer willing to let others define who I was, tell me what I should or shouldn’t be, what I could or couldn’t do.  

Within a week or so of making that decision, samantha kira harding, also known as journal girl, posted on her facebook page that she was starting a 52 paintings in 52 weeks challenge and if anyone wanted to join to email her.  I stopped in my tracks and gave it some thought.  I loved using paint in my work, love the smell of paint, the feel of it all over my fingers and hands, but was I a painter?  I was scared but I decided to go for it because that’s what professional artists do, they challenge themselves.  I am so grateful she did that because I have fallen in love with painting.  Actually, I am in love with all of the creative mediums I dabble in but still, loving the painting process!  It’s my job to show up in life and with my creativity and allow Divine Inspiration to flow from me and that what I am doing, to the best of my abilities.  I’ve surprised myself for sure!  The paintings that I have finished, and even the ones in progress, are all very different as I’m finding my style and niche within it.  I’m so glad that I decided to join that group regardless of the fear I felt because it’s so much fun and I’m learning so much about painting and about myself as an artist.

As I’ve been painting I’ve also been thinking a lot about inspiring people, as well as about being inspired.  There are so many artists that inspire me: samantha kira harding, donna downey, suzi blu, kelly rae roberts, and pam carriker, just to name a few.  And I realized that I can’t inspire people if nobody knows I exist.  To inspire people I need to step past the fear and put it all out there, share my art and my journey, do what I love and my Creator will take care of the rest.  So I set up the blog and then I let it sit for a couple of weeks.  I admit, I allowed fear to get the best of me and I avoided it like the plague.  Yesterday I was reading samantha kira harding’s blog (she really is amazing so if you get a chance, go check her out) and she wrote something about us getting up and doing it.  It inspired me and I realized that I needed to get up, swallow my fear and trust the Inner Guidance I’ve gotten that this blog is my next step and JUST DO IT.  So that’s what I’m doing.  I live in a world of possibilities.  Kelly Rae Roberts has on her website that she is a “possibilitarian” and I absolutely love that phrase!  I believe in possibilities, I believe in living our dreams, pulling them from that world of visualization and making them our reality.  I believe that I am a Divine Creation and that my Creator and the Universe fully support me in my dreams, they work through me.  So if I believe that then I need to have faith and take the steps.  So here I go, embarking on this creative artistic journey of figuring out where I want to go artistically and who I am as an artist.  I’m scared and excited about this next phase of my life.  It’s all about the journey, it’s all about the process, peeling back the layers, adding more, having faith and just doing it.  I hope you’ll join me on this journey and I hope I can give back to at least one person what was so freely given to me: inspiration.