Monday, September 28, 2009

A Newfound Respect for Glass

My aunt and uncle from Grand Junction, Colorado were visiting this past week. I was introduced to photographs from their travels through Arizona and various parts of the west.

They visited a desert museum which features work by the artist Dale Chihuly. So I had to look more into this talented artist whose medium is blown glass. It is easy to marvel at the explosive color and intricate shapes that compose his glass sculpture. The interplay between art and nature are entwined in such a way it makes complete sense out of evolution and creation. But at the same time, you're delighted at his beautiful touches to supplement an already exquisite space.

There's Chihuly, an artist who is living out a passion for his craft and leaving quite a legacy for many generations to appreciate. Then there's my family tree of folks who appreciate "junque." Relatives who bend wire and bang metal into something other than its original shape, but still functional as art and craft. More about that in a later post.

Meanwhile, stop here and enjoy:

Monday, September 21, 2009

Why I Make Things

Creating art has been a part of my life from the time I was about 3 or 4 years old. Some of my earliest memories are drawing with crayons on a big sketch pad as my mom spent afternoons oil painting at an easel. She was taking a night class at the time, and painted portraits. I have dabbled in all kinds of arts and crafts thoughout my life, including pen and ink, acrylic paint, watercolor, needlecrafts, graphic design, clay, and most recently, jewelry.

Art is as necessary as breathing. Whenever I'm feeling antsy or off-center, I want to get my hands dirty and create... something... regardless if the creation turns out particularly well. Artists create because they are passionate about life. The creative process can be as different for everybody as the end product they achieve.

Lynda Lehmann wrote, in Art and Power, "...We see glimpses of beauty and wonder in places where other people may fail to look, unearthing it at every turn. We see new relationships, both visual and metaphoric, sociological and scientific." (See And thank goodness for artists, who transport us from our everyday lives to momentary greatness through their creations.

Now that the seasons are shifting into autumn, my thoughts turn to Christmas and the wonderful bins of remnants collected in the attic, waiting to be turned into handmade gifts. And the urge to create is upon me.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

"Servitude" -- Dig It?

Today I had the opportunity to connect with a favorite trainer, friend, and downright awesome person and watch him in action: delivering a speech at a luncheon. He always speaks from a place of love and serving others in a way that's very present. I so appreciate people who have come to a point in their lives where they realize that connections are an integral part of life. People who make a conscious effort to respond to others with a tone of love and support are amazing.

“After all this is over, all that will really have mattered is how we treated each other.”

Gosh, why don't I have more reminders in my day to alert myself to the opportunities to lift people up? Where in the world do we find positive energy to keep us going, like a gentle unexpected breeze at our backs that helps move us along? To deliver a nice word or lend a hand when it's least expected?

What would change a simple word into a heartfelt exchange?

Some people deliver a speech to a roomful and touch every soul. Some of us have time to make a difference to just one. Whichever the case, it's making a difference that counts.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Approach each day with....

love. A gentle reminder that I have thought of most often over the past year or so. I was first introduced to Og Mandino's Scrolls through a LifeSkills Leadership 1 training. See for the scroll that has been top of mind and a guiding force in my life:

"I will greet this day with love in my heart."

Many of us have a daily perception that has been shaped by old disappointments, hurtful interactions, crass indignities. Each day, however, is a chance to decide which attitude will guide our thoughts. Shall today be clouded by insecurity and distrust, or can I search for positivity and light?

I have found that with love at the core of interactions and intent, many approaches end (happily) with surprising results.

Many questions will be posed; some may never be answered. But this blog is intended to explore the many aspects of love as we know it here on earth.