the necessity of creativity . . .

This morning I had an easy stroll through a part of the Heights yet explored by me. It’s hard to keep a good pace when I see so much that needs to be captured. My creativity has reached a point of flowing so loudly, I cannot silence it, even if I wanted to.

 

like liquid fire

Creative expression is not a luxury for any of us, it is a necessity much like air, water, food, sleep, etc. It’s just that when we are out of practice of unleashing that need to express, it gets quiet & slowly dries up, yet it is still there, always there waiting for us to start noticing & then coaxing it back into a full flow again. That is where I am today.

But I know what it is like to have life, work & family take over where it feels as if there is no time or energy to express my creativity. I may have been busy, but part of me was dead, lifeless & I ultimately didn’t feel fulfilled or complete.

why just fence between these two trees?

I love my new iPhone for this purpose. I have a lot of cameras, from simple to complicated ones, but today my favorite is still the instagram app on my iPhone. It makes creating interesting, soul-full images easy, less time-consuming, with an instant result.

teal & grass green

I believe the best first step in recovering your creativity, is to start paying attention to what catches your eye. If it is a color, or a building, a contrast of two colors, a person, a crack in the sidewalk, the roots of trees, it hardly matters, but notice it, ponder on it, notice everything that draws your attention. Take photos of them.

Slowly that aspect of your inner being will start trickling a long with your interest in it, then it will give you more, open up further, wider until you won’t be able to stop it. You will need to write a story, a poem, take more photos, rip up paper, get out your pencil & doodle, sketch, paint, sculpt & dance. You will be filled with so much energy you can’t stop or slow down & there will never be a lack of ideas of what to create or express next.

three faces of red

love this polaroid app ~ shake it!

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Allow Freedom!

Allow Freedom

And the day came when I needed them.

When the battle was too big for me,

And the lawyer by my side.

I summoned them from the far reaches of time;

Legions of Mothers, Grandmothers, and all the Greats!

We shared this thing in common.

We knew the struggle to keep a child safe.

I called them forth for my little girl;

The baby I birthed,

The Little girl within me,

And every little girl throughout all time,

Who ever needed to be loved, protected and heard;

Every girl who ever needed the freedom to choose.

I gathered them into that courtroom,

To stand with me,

Arms linked,

Hearts connected,

Known, felt, embraced.

They came gracefully, elegantly,

Holding me with calm certainty.

I scrawled our intention in large letters and underlined, “Allow Freedom!

We didn’t come to destroy, conquer or ravage.

We came to defend and allow with love,

With Sofia Wisdom, empathy and grace.

We washed everything over with fierce

“Mama Bear” love of protection.

For one purpose, with one intention, “Allow Freedom.”

In our united front,

Madame Justice held up her scales,

The child was heard,

Her desire granted.

The judge proclaimed,

“I have never done this before,

I’m not sure why I am doing this now,

But I am going to allow the child to decide

Who she will live with and if and when

She wants to visit her father.”

{Silence}

Tears washed over the Legions.

They rejoiced in gratitude.

She was their child and this was

A victory for grace,

A victory for all they stood for.

A victory for all they ever desired;

For every girl to be heard,

Trusted and allowed the freedom to choose!

Freedom was granted on this day

For my little girl and therefore

For all little girls.

I wrote poem very quickly after sitting with such radiantly beautiful, soul-full women at the Sophia Conference in November of last year. The conference is hard to put into words but it touched, moved, shifted & changed me in so many subtle & not-so-subtle ways.

The court hearing was one of those magical, divine moments that today still seems difficult to believe. My daughter had been tormented and abused by her father for years and when I took her for the summer and stood up to him, he took me to court and this is what the court had to say about that.

Articulating this even in poetry is just one of the gifts that emerged from the Sophia experience.

If you are interested in attending next year’s conference in San Diego please get in touch with Laura Plumb at Deep Yoga!

little vignettes of beauty around my house . . .

sage, shell, peeled paint

I have been creating these little vignettes of color & texture around my house lately, all inspired design books like Hand Made Home & Sibella Court’s books, Nomad & Etc. I am just beginning to play with this sort of thing but it is fun. It takes interior design to the level of  art to me, more of an installation art, but one that is temporary, non-permanent, easy changed up – not so precious! It feels good to be surrounded by art.

This wood above & the ones on the mantle were gifts that Larry brought back from Nicaragua that he found on the beach. Those are the best presents ever.

I saved the best vignette for the last. I’m sure you will agree!

steel blue, porcelain, sage

mythical grey, acorn, number 2

prince albert red, drift wood, pale blue

Porcelain, sage, crystal

cigar box gold, blurry red, stacks (a mistake I love)

potty lime, pajama red, barcelona tour book

there is no need to be precious . . .

mini pizza box from Collinas!!!

Two mantras I’ve been creating by these days are, “There is nothing serious going on here!” & “Don’t be too precious!”

These both keep me light, child-like & in the realm of fun & open to so many possibilities that could flow in from just about anywhere. Nothing is off-limits in this realm. An old washer found on the street can be a pendant on a necklace, an old greasy pizza box can be a canvas, we can paint with our hands & tear bits of paper to make art.

This is the approach I took to my recent collages that I created on mini pizza boxes from Collinas. The first box actually does have pizza grease & a little sauce inside, but the second one I asked them for after I finished the first one and realized I wanted to make a pair. I chose a color palate out of one of my Sibella Court books, Nomad  for inspiration for the second one. The first one I was just using shades of blue & green to create a pseudo color wheel (which then after it was done made me realize it was the shape of a pizza – go figure!)

Pizza Box "not so precious" collage

The words read, “There is no need to be precious. Perfection is not required, nor ever sought after. Create to celebrate.” I borrowed the sentiment & re-worded it for this box from another design book called, The Homemade Home; living with art & craft by Mark & Sally Bailey.

This color wheel turned into a flower & an ode to Chipotle, with its burrito wrapper & chips bag. This one is my favorite. I had added words to it but didn’t like the look so covered up with more crepe paper (that was easy!).

So I used crepe paper, tissue paper from stores, silver paint pen, paper bags, burrito wrapper & masking tape! Then I went over the edges of all the tears & cuts with Tim Holtz walnut distressing ink & charcoal pencil. The first one also has blue chalk. I took the collage around the sides to create depth.

Color palette from Nomad; A global approach to interior style

I carried it over to the edges

Make one, if you feel so inspired & share the result with me! It’s fun, easy (if you use the tiny boxes), & great therapy!!! Come on & play with me & repeat after me, “no precious, no serious!”

Big Luscious Love,

Katariina

PS. Here are the cool books that inspire me again & again!

I see you! I am Here!

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” – Maya Angelou

I’ve been trying to get to my computer for a few weeks now to write down some thoughts but things have just been too busy with family, extended family & kids. Our nanny left for Mexico to visit her family & that kept my hands full. Thankfully she is back – we LOVE Anna!

Tonight, on the eve of the New Year, Larry & I are having a reflective evening alone. Finn is in bed & Raine is at a friend’s house. We have been compiling all the favorite moments from last year, basking in the gratitude of all that transpired, all that we created, accomplished & experienced. It’s quite a big list.

My highlights were winning the final court case to have full custody of Raine, receiving my first EVER child support check (we’re putting them all away for when she is ready to take off on her own), attending Squam Workshops, visiting my sister in NYC (staying in Village), finishing our pool, attending the Sophia Conference & deepening my friendships. with Ginger, Sara & Judith.

"Sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast." - Lewis Carroll

Oh & starting this blog & keeping up with contributing has been another highlight. It’s been validating to share my thoughts & creativity with everyone who pops on in to see what’s going on.

Tonight I was reading Mark Nepo’s, The Book of Awakening (which you may know, I love),  the December 31st entry is about an African Bushmen greeting. He explains that when one becomes aware of his brother or sister coming out of the bush, he exclaims, “I see you! and then the one approaching rejoices, “I am here!”

This warms my heart because I know the sweet feeling of being witnessed by all of you. I went out on a limb & shared with you my creations, my vulnerabilities & things that perhaps could have been shame-filled. But you all absorbed my words & images with grace & joy. You witnessed my unfolding as one would witness a butterfly emerging from a cocoon. And for the gift of your witnessing, I proclaim with joy, “I am here!” And in the light of this bushman greeting, I want to proclaim with JOY, I see You!!! All of you! (You know who you are).

Mark Nepo goes on to write, “For as stars need open space to be seen, as waves need shore to crest, as dew needs grass to soak into, our vitality depends on how we exclaim & rejoice, “I See You!” “I Am Here!”

Happy Dance!

May we continue to see each other with joy, may we let go of competition & embrace our one-ness, may we all shout from within with our own unique expression, “I Am Here!” AND May this next year be the best year of your life! EVER!

With so much love,

Katariina

art asylum Houston . . .

bits & pieces

The coolest, cheapest place to find amazing doo dads & doo hickeys to use in collages pieces, assemblage or whatever you like is at The Art Asylum on Houston Ave. If you are not careful you will miss it because from the outside it is just a plane white
building but inside is a whole other story. Inside there are shelves & shelves of about anything you can dream of have been donated by others for artists to use.

front door - its easy to miss

not sure but they look fun

discarded dolls

old albums

i think she is scared of the skull next to her either that or she wants her body back

bowls of beads, bobbles & buttons

On this visit I found a little, string-less, cracked guitar that I’m going to decoupage for fun, a doll that I’m going to papier-mâché into a statue, and an amazing old photo
album – for a story to tell. And doilies of course, you can never have too many doilies.

the photo book treasure

so many possibilities for filling these pages

 

The Art Car Parade

The Monster We Rode In

At my first Art Car Parade in 2010, I remember thinking how cool it would be to have my own art car and I began the planning of my Gypsy Love Caravan Art Car. Of course, as the year went along I got caught up in my thousand other projects and never got around to buying an old car, learning how to weld, finding a garage to work out of, buying some tools, drawing up designs, and so on.

So Cool!

So this year we were going as spectators again but just by chance from a connection of a connection and good timing we were persistantly asked to ride in the back of one of the art cars. We were a little reluctant at first but we had so much fun, smiling and waving to the crowds. The way I see it we are only a year or two away from actually having our own car in the parade. How fun, serendipitious and well fun!

The best part was watching everyone’s expressions and reactions to the cars was priceless, my hubby agrees. Lately I’ve been in awe of all different ways people physically look and also how they express their inner selves in dress and hair and what nots. :o)

Enjoy the photos!  Katariina

Raine with Monster