Saturday, May 26, 2012

Love or Ego

This morning I had another insight about the creative process.  Here goes.  Creating anything from a place of ego, will wind up in frustration and fear.  Creating anything from a place of love, winds up going smooth and can be deemed a success.   Love is the place to work from.   Ego feeds on fear. Ego doesn't want anyone to succeed, it just needs to be fed.  Love feeds on more love.  Coming from a place of love everyone succeeds.  The creative well doesn't dry up.  Coming from love, the posibilities are endless. Ego shuts everything and everyone down. Folks might say, "Well, a strong ego means a strong confident person." I disagree big time.  Ego pops up when fear is in play.  It is how we cover up (not very well) that we are afraid of being found out and maybe not who we say we are.  Ego is a part of us, yet it is the fearful place in us. The side that is doesn't want the world to see who we really are for fear of not being accepted.
Love is all about joyful acceptance.  It brings out who we really are, warts and all.  If you are stuck.  Try loving the situation or person you are currently in. (sometimes very hard to do. Doesn't mean allowing them to run over you or abuse you.)  Most of all love you.
Operate from a place of love. Creative and life will flow.  End of insight.

Are you operating from a place of love or ego.

Until next week...create to feel great.

30 projects complete. 22 to go.   

This week's project is a new tote bag.   With a little owl. My own design!  Gold canvas.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Paint Crazy

In my quest of all things creative, I discovered this wonderful wonderful new local business called The Loaded Brush.  It a BYOB painting class.  Folks can have a glass of wine or beer or two or three and learn to paint a copy of a famous painting. I got a deal on Living Social and invited my friend Marilee to join me for an afternoon of creative fun.  It was a great time. The owner, Aaron is laid back, informative, and funny.  The studio is light and bright.  What I really appreciated about Aaron is that he honestly believes anyone can paint, create and have a ton of fun in the process.  We painted copies of The Chat Noir.  We didn't have wine or beer, but had a relaxing enjoyable afternoon.  I danced out of there feeling like I was a painter in Paris 1920's. As much creating  I do, I don't think of myself as a painter. (Well, I paint rooms in my house, but not an art painter.) I amaze myself every time I create a painting. As we were painting Aaron mentioned a term he calls "Paint Crazy".  That's when our negative voice rises up and says all sort of nasty blocking things.  Aaron suggested we step back, walk away, take a break in order to shut the voice down.  I was so in love with the moment and process, I didn't experience "Paint Crazy", until later in the week, when I was creating a costume for a show and suddenly everything I was putting together was wrong I felt like scrapping the entire show.  There it was "Paint Crazy".  Dang.  I stopped what I was doing.  Went for a walk. Did some yoga and made some dinner.  The craziness got so bad, it was making me cranky and bitchy. I picked a fight and yelled at poor Broadside. It took me a good night sleep and two more long walks, and I think I shook it.  This morning the costume that triggered this, looked good to me.  Finally!
My copy of The Chat Noir, looks awesome to me.  I want to paint more and will.
So, to Aaron at The Loaded Brush in SE Portland, I thank you for a fantastic afternoon, lessons on painting, making it easy for me to create something I'm proud of, and helping me realize the depths of "Paint Crazy."

Folks and Followers, if you live in Portland...check out The Loaded Brush.  I can not imagine you not having a great time and loving what you paint.  It might be a great way to put that "I'm just not creative" chatter to rest (which by the way is close friend of "Paint Crazy".)
Have you ever experienced "Paint Crazy"?  How do you shake it off?

Until next week...Create to feel great!
29 projects complete 23 to go!

And this blog post would not be complete without showing off my version of The Chat Noir!

Saturday, May 12, 2012


I often say that I was lucky to have the benefit of the wisdom of some pretty amazing women in my life, as I was growing up.   My mom's mother was so much a great mom.  She wasn't the a loving grandma.  It just wasn't in her make up.  I don't think she ever really wanted to be either one, but she came from a time and place where that was what women did.  Got married (which she did a lot) and have kids (which she did 3 times).   She was a chef in a time when women were not allowed to wear the chef coat.   Yet she could cook her way around any of the great chefs past or present.  She love a cigarette, a beer and a good game of cards.   My memories of her are of summer nights at the dog racing track, fall afternoons cooking and baking down the kitchen, early misty mornings on the beach digging for clams and her flair for creating life drama.  To say she was a character wouldn't even begin to cover all that was her.
I've been thinking about the other day, as I'm creating costumes for a production of Hamlet in a graveyard.  The graveyard she that is her fianl resting place.  She never knew the contribution she made in my life.  I'm a good cook because of her.  I know how to pick a winner and not just at the dog track.  I think a good helping of my creativity came from her.   I will also forever be grateful for her giving me the quote. "There is always money and time for cigarettes, a bottle of booze and a trip to Reno."   Not one of the great metaphysical quotes of our time, but there is a ton of wisdom in the quote.  If there is something we want, we can figure out a way to get it.  Leave it to my grandma to make it colorful.
This is Mother's Day weekend, and whereas Grandma was never the warm loving spoiling type of Grandma, she gave me a lot of gifts.  And for that I thank her.  It will be nice to have her there during tech week.  I think see might like the costumes I'm building for Gertrude.

Until next week...create to feel create!
28 projects complete! 24 to go!

Project of the week...Something I did with some of those Kanzashi flowers I got crazy with and couldn't stop making.   My good friend needed a fun Asian flavor a fortune cookie fasinator with Kanzashi flowers.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Back To The Trenches

"The secret of joy in work is contained in one word - excellence.  To know how to do something well is to enjoy it."~ Pearl S. Buck

Last year, I decided to take a break from doing costume work. I've created costumes off and on for over 25 years.  I wanted and needed a break to allow myself to explore other creative avenues.
An interesting and possibly fun project presented itself to me in the last month.  A production of Hamlet set in a graveyard.  Modern dress.  Hum...  the timing was right.  The pay was okay.  It is with a company I have enjoyed working with in the past.  I'll do it.
I've been told I know what I'm doing when it comes to costumes. It is sort of in my blood. I grew up around it.  Over the years, I've had a real love/hate relationship with it.  I love the creating. I love working with the people. I love theater.  I hate the hours I have to spend.  I hate it that there are some people for which there is no pleasing-ever! The visions are always huge and the budgets are very tiny tiny tiny.  It challenges me on all levels of my process.  I have to be a diplomat, a designer, seamstress, artisan, psychologist, mind reader and magician. So love/hate.   Yet I think that happens with anything or anyone we love.  We sometime just get worn down.  That is the point,  when I look at and ask how might I create excellence.  I know costumes.  I truly and really do.   As I start to work on this project, my plan is to focus on excellence.  I have already started that. Guess what?  I'm discovering a new joy is something that could be so automatic for me.  Yes this show is not without the challenges and frustrations.  I'm going to continue to challenge myself to create in the mode of excellence.  Celebrate the joy.  Even when I'm digging in the trenches to get the work completed on time.

I'll let you know how I do.
Until next week...Create to feel great!
27 projects complete! 25 to go!

This week's project...bow ties.  For the production.  Why don't I just go buy them?  Well, I have the fabric. And at $3.00 to $5.00 a piece and needing 6.  I saved $18.00 to $30.00 bucks of an already tiny budget.  Plus, it is a fun project.