The importance of doodling…

Spontaneous drawings may relieve psychological distress, making it easier to attend to things. We like to make sense of our lives by making up coherent stories, but sometimes there are gaps that cannot be filled, no matter how hard we try. Doodles fill these gaps, possibly by activating the brain’s “time travel machine,” allowing it to find lost puzzle…

There is one moment in Pippi Longstocking that nailed it for me…

As a child, I desperately searched for characters in books that aligned with my anxious outward ways and my happy reclusive interior.  Charlie Brown came close, but he was always seeking connection.  I was seeking alone time.  Like Charlie, school terrified and exhausted me.  Home, my room, my books were my calming tools.  I found…

I am not depressed today.

  May 18, 2019 Saturdays I tend to have– a type of Saturday Migraine– what I call- spiritual migraines- as the time to myself hits after sleeping in an extra hour after a full week of so much output– I can either be in euphoric creative mode, or despair/exhaustion.  Of course, I enjoy the euphoria.  I…

I keep the broken bits. They illustrate the subtext.

I keep the broken bits. I honour the cracks. They illustrate the subtext. There in I seek the true story. Subtext or undertone is any content of a creative work which is not announced explicitly by the characters or author, but is implicit or becomes something understood by the observer of the work as the…

Silent interiors…

Fort Langley National Historic Site, Easter, April 21, 2019 I spent a wonderful afternoon with my family in Fort Langley today. While the egg scramble mayhem and sugar highs rang out outside, I was drawn to the silent interiors. Form follows function—that has been misunderstood. Form and function should be one, joined in a spiritual…

Sunday pause. Sunday paws.

Sunday pause. ☕️📰📚 Sunday paws. 🐾 Couldn’t sleep well last night- overthinking- work, responsibilities.  But this morning I pause, knowing I’ve worked dang hard to get here.  To get to this moment.  To get to a place where I can sit at a kitchen table alone on a Sunday morning with the New York Times and…

Bird spotting with a yellow legal pad and a walk in the park.

I walked around Lost Lagoon this afternoon. In order to see birds it is necessary to become a part of the silence. ― Robert Lynd I found a heron nest on the ground after a windstorm broke a large tree branch. I saw signs of early Spring. And hope springs eternal.  What else did I…

I get this ways sometimes.

Ever get this way? Staring at your to do list, and not moving? Feels like a slow bleed, but the blood is flowing backwards causing a brain sting. I get this ways sometimes. Trying to figure out too many things and struggling with feeling useless and unproductive, even strangely irresponsible, yet knowing I deserve just…

Potato Nose Diaries (1977): Instalment 8- The Letter

Previously on PND: Instalment 1: Introduction Instalment 2: The First Entries Instalment 3: Do Tendu Jetés en Balance Instalment 4: Sex Education Instalment 5: They Don’t Know What It Is Potato Nose Diaries (1977) Short: I am 15 now Potato Nose Diaries (1977) Short: The Audition Instalment 6: The Trip to Paris Potato Nose Diaries (1977)…

Bird School: The first rule

I am obsessed with birds.  I have this strange belief that I will not uncover truths that I seek in my art without first understanding birds fully.  So I am taking myself through my own Bird School– developing my own rudimentary curriculum and drawing out the answers and stitching together the truths. Recall: Parts of…

Bird School- Head feather groups

I am obsessed with birds.  I have this strange belief that I will not uncover truths that I seek in my art without first understanding birds fully.  So I am taking myself through my own Bird School– developing my own rudimentary curriculum and drawing out the answers and stitching together the truths. Recall: Part- Parts…

Journal exercise: find a message in your words

Journal exercise: 1. Identify something that is blocking you from living fully and loving yourself.   I chose my goddamn fucking ugly mug. 2. Write for several minutes on the subject or whatever comes to mind.  Just let it unfold. “What is really perseverating in my mind is my ugly face.  I keep saying it…

Every stitch a thought- problem solving embroidering drawings.

I’ve got a lot to think about these days.  (Not really any different from other days, I guess, but seriously, there is some amazing stuff brewing). To stay on track with massive projects, to dos and ideas racing around in the head, I have found great solace in pulling out embroidered drawings. As I stitch,…

Journal entry April 16, 2018 San Jose Airport

Journal entry April 16, 2018 San Jose Airport [unedited] It is so odd to take time out from the trajectory of every day in these journeys… to get off the tracks so to speak.  The experience both relaxes the brain, and creates unease.  You feel like you spend too much money and you are wondering about…

Staying in process…

Just when I think– Oh shit, I put myself out there, and now I am all vulnerable and shit and feeling old pangs of, oh shit, what am I doing, where is this going, how will I get there, will it go anywhere, what is this creative career bullshit, shit – a flood of creative process infuses…

When public goes private, do I lose you?

When public goes private, do I lose you? I am so used to sharing my creative process openly– and now I find myself in a new state of being, where in order to discuss and develop the project further, I have to stop sharing it. This is all exciting and unreal– so why do I…

Dream. Letters. Thought and Memory.

I had a terrible dream last night. In the dream, I haven’t been home to visit my parents for four years.  In the dream, they are still living at the house on Braemar (the one we moved into in 1977, the one before they downsized in 2004).  In the dream, they are both as sick…

My narrative.

Something new is brewing.   This new thing will require that I dig deeper, reveal more and share some things previously unshared.   But in order to do that– I need to prepare… Wait.   Hold on… [—–] I just deleted a massive amount of verbosity and ramblings. I don’t need to PREPARE.  I am…

Secrets and mysteries

Great, invisible stories are being written all around us, every day.  The language of the world is full of ineffable secrets and mysteries. – Brian Brett, Tuco- the Parrot, the Others and a Scattershot World Reminding myself to take it all step by step by small step.  Be well and be curious as you enter…

The crown ripped away. Journal musings.

My head hurts.  Not the inside of my head.  The outside.  The muscles on top of my skull.  The ligaments. I sat under a young tree yesterday and leaned my head back and my head was and is tender, so tender. I swear my skull has changed shape in the past few years- at the…

What if today, I just NOT worry?

Today I am giving myself the permission to be just in the moment.   When fear and worry arise, I will try to let it dissipate without trying to figure out solutions.  I give myself permission to just do what I have committed to today.  TODAY. I give myself permission to not worry about what…

From the heart- a 15 day journal exercise Part 9: A Commitment to Life

I am re-reading Stephen Levine‘s A Year to Live- how to live this year as if it were your last as a personal exercise schedule to take time to slow down and truly listen to my heart. Recall: Part 1: Catching Up with Your Life Part 2: Practice Dying Part 3: Preparing to Die Part 4: Dying from the Common…

“You’re a piece of shit.” #drawoutanxiety

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My Stanley Park observations find their way into “Molly” at unexpected times

Our usual spring awakening is late this year. I recall a walk around Beaver Lake a year ago…  I was infused by the profound beauty of nature.  Warm sun.  Blossoms.  Skunk cabbage.  Herons were dancing in the wind above the lake, ducks were courting and playing, chipmunks and squirrels scurrying.  Chestnut-backed chickadees and red-breasted nuthatches landed on my…

Teachable moment during drawing session! 

I have been incorporating How to Draw an OWL in my creative engagement for years. My must-bring tools always include: The china marker is the essential drawing tool.  It is not only my favorite medium, but a great teaching tool as you can’t erase it.  This encourages participants to let go and quiet down the inner critic….

Routine? No, ROOTine.

The word ROOTine came up for me the other day when I was texting with my daughter who is on a life-changing journey, travelling in SE Asia: Looking back on your life from a mom’s perspective as to when you have felt the most happiest is during developing an idea and planning transitions.  When you have gotten…

Release attachment to the outcome…

To feel the anguish of waiting for the next moment and of taking part in the complex current (of affairs) not knowing that we are headed toward ourselves, through millions of stone beings – of bird beings – of star beings – of microbe beings – of fountain beings toward ourselves. – Frida Kahlo I…

Is this where they’ll find me?

Is this where they’ll find me?  In the tub, laying back, my neck resting on the edge, my face covered with a book? Is this where they’ll find me? Seemingly asleep, one hand holding tight the book that covers my face, hiding the cheap reading glasses that have slipped a little, eyes closed, the mouth slightly…

… it goes deep, deep down into its burrow…

I was organizing my notebooks and loose papers and to-do lists at a coffee shop this morning.  I love to organize, but I am strangely disorganized.  Creative chaos is my middle name, but so are organizational skills. My mind runs a 1000 miles per hour, and so I write bits of quotes, make lists, tiny…

Notes from the kitchen table… #journalexercise

Journal exercise: Take time to listen. Sit with pen and paper and write down all you hear.  ALL.   BE PRESENT. I was sitting at my kitchen table the other evening, sewing.  The apartment to myself except for sleeping pets.  I suddenly became very aware of my surroundings. I had, what I can only call, a…