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Stumbling Up the Creative Path.

3 Oct

Ira Glass on Storytelling from David Shiyang Liu on Vimeo.

Wow. Had this on an auto-play loop for a while this evening.

Because…I know this.  In my head I know it.  But, my heart tends to forget it quite often.  Today procrastination was apparently my favored art-form until a friend posted this on Facebook and it hit a nerve.  In a good way.  It helped release that deep breath that I’d been holding since last week (or possibly preschool?).  The one tied to that ugly knot that tends to grow in the bottom of my stomach when anyone mentions wanting to see what it is I write. Yah that one.  That one has been especially testy since realizing that a substantial requirement for my new writing group is that we actually share what it is we are working on. {Terror}

This little reminder came at an interesting time in regards to my blogging as well. Lately,  I’ve been trying to figure out the point of all this silent screaming in the dark.  I suppose this too I knew all along*.  It’s not just getting things off my chest. It’s not simply putting something out there to see if it gets noticed. It’s certainly not about trying to impress or please anyone but myself.  It’s more about learning as I go and making this whole writing thing a little less scary because I do it every day and I get better at it as I go.  And sometimes I need to just fail and make mistakes and let things be messy.  For me that’s the hardest part.  Being brave enough to let others see those imperfections.  And yes, it’s somewhat about making connections in ways I really don’t anywhere else.  But, above all, it’s really about putting in the work towards becoming the kind of artist that I see in my head.  Because that girl I totally admire and respect, and can’t wait to meet.  So if you see her wandering around out there in the dark… just remind her to take a deep breath… and get back to work.  I promise I’ll thank you someday!

*[Note to self: Install more RAM in brain]

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Sometimes Online is Awesome

9 Sep

I don’t know how it got to the point where it’s been six months since I posted anything on here.  That just makes me feel… old.  But, I suppose I found myself a bit overwhelmed by my various online self-induced obligations and needed a break and some perspective from the real world.

Which mostly means I’ve been working on my “real” writing projects, and studying, and reading books that I don’t have to review and spending days and weeks at a time without even checking my email.  (I don’t suggest that last part if you get as much email as I do).

I’m still not sure what my new take is going to be with this multi-blogging project. I’m hoping to get things consolidated down to one pressure-free space. I’ll keep you posted.

In the meantime….

I ventured back onto Twitter today and found myself wandering down a little rabbit hole that led me to something I had to get on here and talk about.  HitRECord.org is a collaborative project helmed by Joseph Gordon-Leavitt that is just ur-cool in my humbly opinionated brain.

It’s all kinds of artists, film-makers, writers, animators, editors, musicians, composers etc.  just throwing stuff out there and working together to remix it and make it awesome.  If things fly, Joe has the Hollywood connections to make impressive things happen.  But, it’s really just about creating something amazing.  And doing it together.  It’s not about ego or making a name for yourself.  Everything you put up on the site is free to be borrowed from and worked off by others.  This is like artistic utopia people and I’m loving it.

Check out one of the short-films they screened at Sundance and SXSW this year, then go contribute some of your talent and/or opinons to the cause.

Caught My Eye: Tulips

18 Feb

Before they came the air was calm enough,

Coming and going, breath by breath, without any fuss.

Then the tulips filled it up like a loud noise.

Now the air snags and eddies round them the way a river

Snags and eddies round a sunken rust-red engine.

They concentrate my attention, that was happy

Playing and resting without committing itself.

~ From Tulips, by Sylvia Plath

My mother sent a version of these photos and the text below to me in an email today (which reminded me of the poem) and kinda filled me with awe, so I wanted to share.  I tried to track down the original source or photographer with no luck,  looks like it’s been traveling around the interweb  for a couple of years now.  But, I did stumble onto this version with the gorgeous photos made into a video and set to one of my favorite songs, which is even more magical! Enjoy a little glimpse of spring to come.

“At first glance, it looks like a giant child armed with a box of crayons has been set loose upon the landscape. Vivid stripes of purple, yellow, red, pink, orange and green make up a glorious Technicolor patchwork. Yet far from being a child’s sketchbook, this is, in fact, the northern Netherlands in the middle of the tulip season. With more than 10,000 hectares devoted to the cultivation of these delicate flowers, the Dutch landscape in May is a kaleidoscope of giddy colors as the tulips burst into life. The bulbs were planted in late October and early November, and these colorful creations are now ready to be picked and sold as bunches of cut flowers in florists and supermarkets. More than three billion tulips are grown each year and two-thirds of the vibrant blooms are exported, mostly to the U.S.and Germany.

Their dazzling colors are thanks to the years in the 17th century when Tulip mania swept the globe and the most eye-catching specimens changed hands for a small fortune. But like a rainbow, this colorful landscape is a short-lived phenomenon. When the flowers are gone, the land will be cultivated for a rather more mundane crop of vegetables. The Netherlands produce more than nine million bulbs a year.”

– Original Source Unknown

Because Sometimes Living in a Tree Just Sounds Right

16 Feb

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Seriously, if it weren’t for the high cost of admission I would have figured out a way to live in the Swiss Family Robinson treehouse at Disneyland long ago.  But I’m willing to socialize too.  Set me up in an Ewok village or Lórien from LOTR (yes my geek is showing) and I’d be perfectly happy.

Really the thought of moving anywhere with the least bit of imagination would thrill me right now.  I’m supposed to be packing for my move to Mesa next week and ugh.  Ugh.  I don’t want to deal with it.  Moving to another depressing box.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad I’ll be closer to my family.  I think.  I just hate dealing with moving in general.  I’m still not completely unpacked in my current  apartment after two years and the plan was to get something bigger so I had room for everything, but of course I’m ending up somewhere smaller instead. Finances and time and disappointment won out.  I think at some point during the process of searching I just gave up and said, fine…it’s a roof over my head, I’ll take it.  But no matter what I do, I can’t seem to make myself excited about it.  Any suggestions people?!  How do we make moving fun?

The Before I Die Project

28 Jan

Photos By Subtext Projects

“[Artist Candy Chang] transformed a wall of [Dallas based East/West] Galleries into a giant chalkboard stenciled with the phrase, “Before I die I want to _____.” People can use chalk to write on the wall and remember what is important to them. This project is also about sharing and discovering the hopes and aspirations of the people around you. In addition to the gallery show, Before I Die is being installed on neglected buildings in New Orleans in hopes of improving both our physical environment and our individual well-being while understanding our neighbors in a different and enlightening way.”

via CandyChang.com

I came across the above fascinating art installation today.  And I love that it’s being installed on neglected buildings in New Orleans.  I kinda wish I had one on my wall, for myself, for my friends and family… it’s such an intensely connecting concept.  I kind of think it’s appropriate that the proclamations are made in chalk as well.  I like knowing it’s okay to change my mind about what’s important, but I don’t have to.  I wonder if I could fill up an entire wall myself?

Here’s a few things I think I’d scratch out:

  • Before I die I want to touch someone’s heart and mind with my writing.
  • Before I die I want to watch my nephews and niece grow up.
  • Before I die I want to visit India.
  • Before I die I want to take care of those that have taken care of me.
  • Before I die I want to read thousands and thousands more books.
  • Before I die I want to eat pancakes at the White House.

Yah, OK, so that last one might be a stretch. (Unless the Obama’s are actively looking for brunch guests, in which case, do put me down)  It still sounds like fun!  The truth is there are probably thousands of things I could put on my wall.  Big and small, simple and outlandish. I’ve never been short on dreams.  The real question for me is not, WHAT do I want to do before I die, but HOW do I make those things happen.  I’m afraid that wall might look a bit more messy.  My plans are never step by step, this leads to that.  Life intervenes, and we skip ahead and fall backwards and jump to another wall altogether, all the while scribbling notes in the margins and wondering if this is really what we want after all.  For me, the messiness of the process is part of the joy of life.

But now I’m curious…what would be on your wall?

This applies to you.

27 Jan

Caught My Eye: Cabfare Productions

26 Jan

Wedding Videos That Make You Want to Fall in Love Again (and live in Seattle)

Don’t ask me how I got there.  I think it started with a book. (What else?)  But, somehow I found these amazing little wedding videos by a company in Seattle called Cabfare Productions.  And I got lost in them. Every one of them is a work of art.  Bet ya can’t watch just one! Enjoy!!

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