My diary 2017 is my new art journal – which is good as this year’s diary has a BIG page for each day…
John is a mechanic. He used to be mobile but now he has his own workshop in an industrial estate. He likes going to the beach – but not sandy ones, because he doesn’t like finding sand in his chips.
Every Friday evening he goes to the pub after work, for a pint of lagger. Not this week though…
Doris wears black shiny shoes with big buckles and rides a chequered black and white Vespa – matching her socks – with a thousand mirrors and headlights on.
Annabelle works in a library and brings cupcakes into work every Friday. She likes books about clouds, Victorian dresses and cats.
Since writing this post at the beginning of the summer, Thom has been through a few sketch books and quite a large amount of paper… I have been a bit more savey. I’m still using the same book, and it looks a bit tattered now from being soaked with water wash for all sorts of water colour, clay or pastel experiments.
You have spent the entire summer thinking about and drawing dragons. You have drawn, painted and modelled an impressive collection of different species. We have been spending hours reading together the How To Train Your Dragon books, by Cressida Cowell, as you loved the films so much. You told me that the dragon on picture number 2 (above) is a fire dragon.
Prior to dragons, you were fascinated by pirates, as we read Peter Pan, by J.M. Barrie. We even met a real pirate in Eastbourne, during a Pirate gathering. You were dressed in your fine pirate outfit and this big grown up Pirate surprised you, when he drew out his dagger out of his belt, in between waiting tables to start a play fight with you. You got a bit scared and decided that you would rather take your pirate outfit off and just go to that Pirate gathering in normal day clothes.
To my surprise, you got really captivated by the story of Pinocchio retold by Michael Morpurgo that we read after Peter Pan, just before we entered the Dragons Era.
We had a recent butterfly interval, during which we spent a few days making butterflies in all the ways we could think of, covering the doors of our craft cupboard.
We have only lived here for a few months but the patio has already hosted numerous creative endeavours…
Such as a few action painting projects…
and some large scale chalk creations…
You have also been showing a very keen interest in photography and I have let you play with my camera quite a lot.
You seem to really enjoy making your own short videos. In one of them you keep repeating: “The caterpillars are singing along with the birds”. I thought it was beautiful.
While I have been struggling with back issues, spending a lot of sunny days bed ridden, or being seen by the osteopath or the physiotherapist, you have spent a lot of time riding your bike back and forth on the cycle path to get gelatos (“strawberry cream ice cream in a cone, with chocolate sprinkles please”) with Daddy (and sometimes with me too).
The Tooth Fairy paid us a visit for the first time, as you lost your first milk tooth. It was exactly around the same time you managed to ride your bike without stabilisers for the first time, at the beginning of the summer… and you have been riding it steadily ever since!
It was the day of the football World Cup final and we ended up watching it in a pub that evening as we were celebrating your bike riding success with a pub dinner. You asked me questions all throughout the first half of the game, getting us a few looks from irritated football fans.
Yesterday we came across a few dressing up bins outside a charity shop near us… and we found a couple of very cool outfits… so now you are waiting for Halloween :)
Your current favourite place is the Rock Climbing site. As two climbers pointed out to me this afternoon, you seem to be a “natural”: you just climb up and down trees and rocks with such ease and speed to the dismay of everyone around.
You and Tara are both really good climbers and such a combo! It’s sometimes hard to keep up with you two! You have just spent the afternoon together, paddling in a stream, playing with stones.
I hope that you are enjoying this journey as much as I do, and remember:
“To live will be an awfully big adventure!” (Peter Pan/J.M. Barrie).
With lots of love,
About the weather, the either or?
That I would drop my crown
Quiet, suddenly (and slam the door),
Somewhere in town.
I’m sill feeling restless
In the upside of the Downs
But I’m trying to add more stillness
In my life and yours as we are blown
Away from our deck chairs,
The passenger seats.
Electric is the air
I can even feel his heart beats.
The count in between lightning and thunder
Tells us how far the storm is from here
What about the count from the dragon’s lair?
Can you tell if He is near?
My recent times have been busy with home-educating my son, my yoga course, gardening, enjoying quiet family time, educating myself on the Ayurvedic system (and being amazed at how much it makes sense), and spending quality time in the woods with my canine friend Tara.
I’m feeling the need to connect with my creativity so I’ve been writing regularly, enjoying looking around me with a sense of wonder, and I even started to draw again.
I think all human beings need to find ways to express their creativity… Music and Photography used to be my ways of expressing myself back in my 20’s, and when I became a mum I started to cook a lot instead and of course I have a well-documented child, as I took quite a lot of photos of him as a baby and toddler.
Although at some point I had no camera… that was a dark era!
Portrait photography used to be my specialty, I used to enjoy taking portraits of animals a lot, and also trees, flowers, stones… I did take a lot of portraits of people too. Some of them were famous in their scene, others were famous with their Mums… it didn’t matter to me who they were. With every single being I had the honour to photograph (note I’m deliberatly not using the expression “taking” a photo…) I got to have a glimpse of their soul, and I must say that with animals that experience is often a lot more powerful than with humans, because animals just “let you in” without any attempt to shield anything.
Since being a Mum I have been constantly amazed by the sense of creativity that is innate to children. They are naturally creative as they don’t have any blockages within their creative process or great expectations for the result. Making a mess certainly doesn’t stop them getting started. Most of us adults have been conditioned when we were kids to care about how the things we make/create look like. We were compared with one another by thoughtless teachers or parents, some of us were told we were not good at arts, or that we didn’t have any talent in a particular subject whereas others may have been told they were creative geniuses and had to live up to the expectations that come with such a statement… I have met quite a few very talented artists and some of them seemed to be carrying their gift like a heavy load on their shoulders… that’s possibly why :-)
But for kids, art is just easy:
Thom and I go for long walks in the woods regularly and it amazes me to see how he comes up with Land Art projects on his own, and really enjoys immersing himself in the zone of creativity, creating a world made out of stones, earth and sticks…
He started to write on his own last year, because he was attracted by letters. So he started copying them on his own and now he writes his own name on everything and inserts random letters in his drawings as a part of the picture, because he likes the look of them.
Nothing seems to intimidate him, a few months ago we went to march to protest against the badger cull in the UK. I asked him to make his own sign and he just drew a badger, from the top of his head, just like that:
Obviously I’m aware that it doesn’t look exactly like a real badger, but I really like the fact that he didnt have anything holding him back from just doing it, even if he has never done it before!
(Re)opening the creativity channel doesnt need to be a complicated process. Even if as adults we may have forgotten the simplicity of just drawing or painting whatever comes to us. It is in fact a very liberating activity.
I find that writing a few pages first thing every morning helps. Most of the time I just start to write with no particular goal and my ideas just articulate themselves, and as I allow the pen to connect with my soul I realise in amazement that I’m releasing a few things that were stuck somewhere, in the back of my mind.
Going somewhere we have never been before can help, and also revisiting old places every once in a while to re discover them with new eyes is definitely an interesting experience too.
The practice of Yoga is a great way to release old blockages, to connect with ourselves and discover new possibilities – extending and stretching our own limitations.
Carrying a note pad and pen with you when out and about is useful as you may feel like writing something down while being in an inspiring place, such as the woods or the sea front… or in a cafe in town. One of my favourite activities back when I was travelling a lot used to be sitting down in a cafe somewhere and just writing anything that would go through my mind. Sometimes it was bits of conversations I could pick up around me, or words from a song… I have filled lots and lots of books like this. With poetry it sometimes feels that there is no thread to follow at all… but every single entry is an instant of my life. I would just spend hours writing, filling up pages and pages… and I would also sketch a lot.
Music is a great way to release blockages too. Singing makes you feel great, drumming can be very liberating and dancing is a very powerful way to release emotional build up!
The possibilities are infinite, but if you feel stuck you need to feed and nurture your creative self. That can be done through spending some time on your own in an inspiring place, to reconnect with yourself, and recharge. That can be in nature, in the woods, in a park, in the mountains, by the sea or in a museum, a cafe…
Sometimes yoga teachers advise their students to take on a creative activity to release certain blocks, so they might advise them to start playing a musical instrument, or to start singing. Creativity is a very healing process if we are open to let go of our fears/apprehensions and just go for it!
Releasing blockages through creativity is empowering and very useful when one is learning to communicate telepathically with animals or any other beings. It stretches our minds to towards infinite possibilities, giving us a sense of strength and joyfulness that elevates us to a higher state of consciousness because we are really connecting with ourselves and the world around us…
So don’t fear judgements or criticisms and enjoy every single step of your unique creative process, and remember: The journey is more important than the destination.