Entries Tagged as: Film

Playful Resources

January 7th, 2009, Comments (19)

Grammyandme I've been hearing from a number of people about their resistance to play and oddly enough, that gets me a little excited. I get excited because I believe that resistance is telling and it most likely means that those of us who feel some resistance to play, really, really need to get playful!!

Rowena mentioned struggling with the theme because she really wanted to take her creativity seriously this year. And I totally loved that image because I've been there myself oh so many times. Imagine me pounding my fists on the table and shouting,

"It's time to get serious! I'm going to be creative now and it's going to be amazing! Seriously! No smiling!"

Sounds inspiring, right? No? I know for me, when I get too serious or when I feel restricted in some way around what I'm creating, I tend to get all stiff and what I create tends to lack a certain flow. When I create from this place of "have to" and "should", the creation tends to have an energy that you may not be able to name, but you can see something is not quite right. It looks a bit, well, uptight.

Play helps me return to the good stuff, the inspiration, the sheer joy of creating. So, if you're feeling any resistance to playing, I want to whisper in your ear,

"Go play! See what happens!"

I watched the movie Chocolat this weekend. What a gorgeous movie! (And not just because Johnny Depp is in it. Ahem.) The movie is full of magic, gorgeous color, and a wonderful story. It definitely made me feel more playful just watching it. Are there movies, books, music, or other resources that make you feel especially playful?

Here are some of my favorite playful resources, some meant to inspire you to play and others to make you laugh (because laughter often leads to playfulness!) I'd love to hear some of your resources for play too!!

Movies: Chocolat, Amelie, The Never Ending Story, The Princess Bride, The Goonies,
Books: Eat Mangoes Naked by SARK, the Harry Potter series, The Dot by Peter H. Reynolds, A Big New Free Happy Unusual Life by Nina Wise,
Music: Weird Al, Bjork, They Might Be Giants
Silliness: Lazy Sunday, Laughing Baby, Ninja Cat
Other ideas: Crayons, coloring books, doodling, dancing in your pajamas, making a fort in your living room (or from a large box like I did with my Grammy in the picture above)...have fun!

Being Brave with Depression

July 15th, 2008, Comments (32)

Floating Over the Circus marker and ink on watercolor paper, 9"x12"

I've been feeling a bit quiet and tender around the edges this week so far. One thing that really helped brighten my mood was getting out the door and taking a long walk. I brought some things I needed to mail and a bag to get some groceries in and walked a couple miles into town. All the beautiful flowers along the way filled me up. And I need to be especially true to self-care right now as I'm on a journey that fits right in with my Be Brave theme of the month.

I wondered about whether or not to write about this here. It's a personal subject and can be a touchy one. I've talked about my experiences with depression here before. I think a lot of creative folks struggle with it, perhaps we're more sensitive and therefore more vulnerable to dark moods. 1 in 5 women in the U.S. is on anti-depressants, so I know I'm hardly alone. And while I'm not feeling like discussing my history with depression at the moment, I do want to say that I'm currently trying (with the assistance of a doctor) to slowly come off my anti-depressants. The first month of this process (that may take 6 months or more to complete) went amazingly well. I didn't feel a difference at all, in fact I felt better than usual. I'm now in the second month and I've felt the dip. I know I'll rebound though. It's sort of the feeling of when you jump into water. You dip down a bit before coming back to the surface.

I know that there will probably be some withdrawal symptoms involved in the future. Anyone who has done any reading about or had experience with coming off anti-depressants knows that the withdrawal can be harsh. However, I feel like I'm in a place in my life where I'd like to approach depression from a different angle and it feels like now is the time to go for it. Plus, I feel like I have a great doctor to work with who will help me do this safely and smartly. I'm not anti-medication by any means. I've been on some sort of anti-depressant for nearly 7 years and I would never judge anyone's choice to be on or off medication. Whatever keeps you healthy and safe is the way to go. And I'm not positive that I'll be able to come off anti-depressants completely, but I do want to try. If I can't do it safely, that's o.k. too. There are many reasons for making this decision and perhaps I'll go into that more later, but I felt like I wanted to share where I'm at at the moment as it is a big part of what's going on for me currently. Part of my brave action today is writing about this here.

I'm a bit behind on email, but if I owe you one, I'll get to it soon, promise! Tomorrow is a day for returning emails and errands and hopefully some art and then Thursday is my birthday and I plan to do whatever I feel like. Hehe. Friday, I'm planning to meet my mom for a pedicure and a movie and then drive up to Artstream for Lisa Solomon and Lisa Congdon's art opening. I feel totally introverted at art openings, but it should be fun, inspiring, and hopefully I'll see some familiar faces!


June 14th, 2008, Comments (10)

New piece I've been working on, "Language" built up from layers of acrylic, ink, colored pencil, and paper on 11" x 14" watercolor paper. Again, thinking about memory, losing words and their meaning, the way trees are shaped like the pathways in our brains, and also family trees. Finishing it was timely considering my grandmother's entrance into a nursing home this week due to the progression of her Alzheimer's disease. It's been really tough for my mom. And just sad in general. And scary. I do hope that no one else in my family is headed for that fate.

I'd been itching to see a movie this week, so last night the hubster and I went to see "The Happening." Wow. It was awful. Do not go see it. Seriously.

Anyways, its' a beautiful day and I need to run some art to the post office! I hope your weekend is a wonderfully creative one!

Creativity from the Top of Your Head to the Tip of Your Toes

January 21st, 2008, Comments (18)

I love the way CED participants have been noticing the endless ways to be creative. Today, I was thinking about the little things that bring me delight. It's so important to notice those things that make you happy and bring them into your life as much as you can.


A few months ago, I'd seen a little girl running around with the cutest, sparkly shoes. They were so adorable that I giggled when I saw them. I think I even said, "Oooo, I want sparkly shoes!" Well, shortly after that I saw a pair of inexpensive, but super sparkly shoes for sale. It was already winter time and they certainly weren't super practical shoes for the time of year, but I've definitely gotten my $15 worth. I wear them around the house all the time like slippers, while going up and down stairs with laundry, and in my parents house when I visit to keep my toes warm. And I'll be able to wear them outside in the spring. They are blue (my favorite color), so sparkly, and they still make me smile when I see them. They make my feet dance when I wear them. That's always a good thing too. And my small, but fun creatactivity of the day was taking these pics of my shoes and a very curious Tabbers cat.


It was so nice to get home last night! The hubster and I were very excited to be together again and we had a really fun day today. We drove around and looked at houses (just from the outside), saw a movie (Cloverfield), and I even fit in a little nap with the kitties. It was a good day. The movie was good by the way. It was definitely spooky and fun. A friend of ours worked on the film, so we waited to see his name in the credits and cheered. Hehe.

Hope your weekend was a lovely and creative one!

Day 3 – Dandelion Wishes

November 3rd, 2007, Comments (17)

A spontaneous painting. I sat down with a 6"x6" gallery wrapped canvas and some paint, picked out some colors that called my name and started. This is what came out. The colors I chose were influenced in part by my memory of this photo by dotintime I saw today on the AEDM flickr group. Funny part is that my memory of the picture's colors are quite different from what they actually are, but that's o.k. Heh. Anyways, it's a quite different color scheme than I normally use, but I do love me some dandelions and I enjoy the pinkish-brown tones and golds with some blue/purple/brown in the background. I layered colors and textures and tried to let go and play, then step away and re-assess and then play again.

Today was a rainy, windy day in New England. A lovely day to stay in my jammies and snuggle up with kitties. I watched "Dreamgirls" today and totally loved it. I sang along and cried and laughed. Totally enjoyed it. Jennifer Hudson was incredible! Wowza. Overall, it was a great girly movie for a day on the couch.

Wedding Veil Ordered – Check!, Crazy Relatives – Check!, Wedding Mania – Check!

September 13th, 2007, Comments (10)

Oh, I'm so off! I feel completely discombobulated. This cold is kicking my butt. I'm so over you, cold! Take a hike! I've got one of those racking coughs goin on that makes my brain hurt and sleep difficult. Despite that, I'm attempting to find my rhythm again.

Saw a great movie last night with the fiansor. If you need a good hearty laugh and you have a silly sense of humor (and you don't mind a little bit of over the top violence...there is a bit of gore in it, but it's not scary at all, it's all in the name of comedy), you might just love this movie, "Hot Fuzz." It's from the makers of "Shaun of the Dead" which I found to be funny, but also scary and I think it did give me nightmares. "Hot Fuzz" didn't give me any bad dreams. It wasn't scary, just ridiculous. It starts out a little slow, with silly British humor and then all the sudden it shifts into complete mayhem. I don't want to spoil the story, so you'll just have to go rent it yourself.

Had some more wedding discussions with the fiansor last night. Trying to figure out the shape of our ceremony, which is a little stressful and then all these little pieces like where we're having a rehearsal dinner (there's not enough space for that in our apartment), do we need a limo to pick up parents and grandparents?, and why won't the coordinator at our venue call us back?? (grr) Too many details to keep in my head and this is just the tip of the wedding iceberg. I always found the image of a Bridezilla to be a truly ridiculous image and even though I definitely haven't gone to that level of nuttiness, I am beginning to sympathize with women who lose it momentarily. Because when that woman flips out about place cards, it's so not about the place cards...it's about their cousins who won't tell them what food choice they want before the venue's deadline, and their parents bugging them about what tie color they should wear when she couldn't care less, and the friend who insists on bringing their baby even though it's an adults only reception, and the coordinator who hasn't been returning her phone calls in a month, and their mother is flipping out because they didn't see every single fitting and choice made in person, and some relative who is upset because they heard there will be bacon in one of the appetizers, etc...So, when she starts crying and yelling about place cards, you just have to give the girl a hug and not tell her that the place cards don't matter because she knows that and she's just super overwhelmed. I mean, getting married and saying your vows is a big enough life event to have to deal with and then having to plan this huge monster of a party on top of that is enough to make any girl, except maybe the martha stewarts among us, a bit batty. And oh boy, do I wish I had more Martha Stewart in me right about now.  However, after chatting and laughing with the fiansor last night, we both know that the day itself will be perfectly imperfect and fun and romantic and a whirlwind. My brother is getting married next weekend and then there will be only 3 weeks til my wedding. O.my.god. And so, posting may be erratic to say the least. Bear with me. :-)

And how bout some fun links before I head off to my mom's for a make-up trial? Sure.

-Thursday, September 27, Marisa of Creative Thursday is having a one-day Creative Thursday event where she's encouraging anyone who is interested to do something creative. Read more about that here!
-I was telling all the girls in Maine about where I got my fantastic purse. I picked out the fabric and purse design at a purse party/bachelorette party last year for my best friend. A rep from the company who makes them, called 1154 LILL Studio came out to the house with bags of fabric and purse styles and we got to spread them all out and play and design a purse (which was then made in Chicago and sent back to us.) It was so much fun and I use that purse nearly every day. You can go on their website and design your own purse online or go to one of their stores and do it in person. Much fun. And today I got an email from them saying that they're now selling their fabric alone which could be great fun for making curtains or a pillow or your own style of purse. The name of the company is from the address where they started out in Chicago and it was all started by a woman with a great idea. Their fabrics are great and if you've got one of their stores near you, I'd definitely check it out.
-This website for a cat cam invention absolutely cracked me up. Apparently, the camera attaches to the cat's collar and then takes pictures at regular intervals. On the site you can see examples of the inventor's cat, Mr. Lee's, travels. I love the pics of him coming upon a cat friend and then the various adventures they go on. Too cute!
-Anthropologie just opened a store nearby and now I can much more easily spend time browsing their super fun way of arranging a store. There stuff is expensive, but every once in a while, I do enjoy shopping there for a special occasion dress or fun knick knack. I happened to get many tea pots and accessories for my bridal shower from friends and family and I am just loving my new collection of tea pots and cups. I need to get some shelves to display them I think. I decided I had to have this cup and saucer for my collection since it is the one featured in the painting I bought from Jessie! And I bought one new fall outfit including this adorable sweater which I'm loving to pieces.

Ok, that's all for now folks. Have a wonderful evening!

For Now

August 24th, 2007, Comments (6)

Art to be posted later. Started something last night and I'm not sure where I'm taking it. What I know is that I wish I had a big wooden panel to paint it on. Something tall and skinny. I wonder if I can get a panel cut like that locally?

I've got a new post up at the Blue Tree blog with all my Subway art together with sizes and prices and information about the show they can all be seen at next month at Nahcotta in Portsmouth, NH. Nahcotta also has a blog here and they featured a piece of my subway art there the other day which was awesome. Nahcotta is a gorgeous space and I'm excited to see (in person) the art of so many talented artists I've admired online (and meet some of them too at the opening!) Oh, I just popped over to their blog and saw the postcard for the show (looks great!) and saw that they're running a cool contest, so do go check it out!

Last night, after a very full day, I found myself feeling exhausted. I sat down and watched a long documentary on Katrina, When the Levees Broke, on HBO. It was devastating and at one point, out of nowhere I started to sob. I know I can get overwhelmed by the smallest things, but it's the big things on top of the small things that really overwhelm me. Sometimes there is too much sadness to know what to do with it. I contribute in my own small ways, through charities, through art, through being a decent person. But I feel so small in comparison to so much suffering. Of course, it's the stories of individual people and their suffering that broke my heart. It certainly puts things in perspective and makes me grateful for the life I have. But it also makes me furious with our inept government. How could they turn their backs on such a disaster? I don't understand.

For bit of a lighter tale, here's a conversation I had with my mom this morning about my bridal shower tomorrow.

her: "So, what time are you going to get there tomorrow? I'll be there an hour early."
me:  "Ok, so do you want me to be there early?"
her: "Well, I'd like you to be a little surprised."
me: "Ok, so would you like me to show up on time, with the guests?"
her: "Well, it might be nice to have you there a little early."
me: "Mom, just tell me. What time would you like me to be there?"
her: "Oh. Well, let me think about it."

Oy vey. From our conversation I'm guessing she'd like me to be 15-20 minutes early and I just want to make her happy, but I wish she'd just tell me what she wants sometimes! I do this sometimes too, this beating around the bush. I'm working at being more direct and this crazy-making conversation makes me even more determined to do so. So, I'll be driving up with my future mother and sister in law and showing up early, but not too early. Heh. I've just gotta laugh. I get all uncomfortable with the focus on me, so this will be a nice, but tiring day. And I'm sure I'll come home with my arms full of new towels and kitchen appliances and maybe some lingerie. ;-)

Feelin’ Summery

May 25th, 2007, Comments (8)

I did the above art "Time Travel" a couple weeks ago in that mixed media class. It's collage and acrylic on watercolor paper. I think the teacher was disappointed that I didn't do it on wood as we had wood boards available. I could mount it on wood later. I see her point in a way though. I like working on paper because it takes some of the pressure off. If I hate it, it's nothing to toss it or rip it up to use in something else. But on wood, that's harder to do. Also on paper, there's room for change. I work somewhere within the boundaries of the paper, so that later I can crop it where it looks best. A canvas or piece of wood has fairly fixed boundaries, working with those materials, I'd need to be more clear about composition when I start. At the same time, it's true that art tends to look more professional when it's mounted in some way, whether that be built in (as in a canvas or piece of wood with the sides painted) or when a work on paper is matted and framed or even just matted. I often don't take that extra step with works on paper. I don't care for them as well as I could. I want to start taking my work, I want to say more seriously, but that's not quite it...maybe more professionally?

Woo! It's toasty out! Feels like summer! I know it happens every year like clockwork, but the amount of green that blooms in spring always takes me by surprise. Looking out the windows...well, I can barely see anything but green leaves! The trees have expanded, pregnant and full of leafyness. Birds are chirping constantly around the bedroom windows, driving our kitties batty. My car is simply unrecognizable. The trees shed more and more pollen on it everyday and I'm not driving as much, so my car seems to take on a rediculous amount of the stuff. It looks like it's camoflauged. I'm embarrassed to bring it to the car wash, it's that gross. The other day, I came out and there must have been a hundred inch worms (and I'm not exaggerating) all over it. Ack! If I don't wash it soon, I'm afraid it might drive off into the woods by itself like the car in Harry Potter. Ooo, I'm SO excited for that movie! Eeee!

Life is good. I get anxious about gatherings and changes, but it's so silly that I need to remind myself that everything is great. Yoga has been helping this week. Sometimes, I need to remember to just breathe. Speaking of which, Kathryn has a great interview with author, Eric Maisel on her blog regarding his new book, Ten Zen Seconds. I mentioned it in a comment on her blog, but I also wanted to mention here that I recently found out that Alyson Stanfield (author of the Art Biz Blog) is offering a free teleseminar with Eric Maisel regarding this book. Very cool! Hope you're all having a beautiful day!