Sunday, March 28, 2010

today

kitten nips at my nose to wake me (he did let me sleep late though)

coffee

internet

yoga

paint

nap

cut and tape

run

stop for groceries on way home from run

prep food for week

cut and tape

and soon...

bed.

and then another day tomorrow.

it's all good!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

weekend!

and why, might you ask, is the weekend a treat for me?

(since I work every day anyway).

Because! I plan my weekend days around a delicious mid-day nap!

And because on weekends I don't have any of my (wonderful & important) helpers around, which allows me the luxury of more time to enjoy doing what I first loved about this work: feeling the delight of knowing, as I wake in the morning, that there is nothing I have to do except spend time quietly making things.

I don't have to play at being manager, traffic director, organizer, responsible business owner (I'm trying to learn that one). I don't have to have my brain constantly tuned into how to make sure everyone has productive work to do in their hours here, making sure everyone is ok (which although is not really my responsibility, it IS my nature to care about such things, and it is my home). I don't have to answer the phone if I don't want to, I don't have to try to figure out when I am going to manage to get my run in, make it to yoga, get the sandblasting done in time for their arrival.

And it's quiet.

Not that I don't enjoy the lively chatter, the gut-busting laughter, the thoughtful discussions.

I love those.

In fact although I energetically resisted the notion of having helpers here in my home/factory for a long time (predicting that I would miss my quiet solitude) I really love the energy and company of my lovely helpers.

They contribute an enormous positive quality to my life (not to mention the essential help).

But my quiet solitude is still the place where my truest self resides and refreshes.

Quiet solitude always feels like home.

And I breathe out on weekends.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

finally, the new photos!

In no particular order, and without further adieu:
(as always, click on photo to view larger image).


One example of the new "Sunset Line." I love how the shadows read through the front to the back.


Another example of the sunset line.



These are not glued on, or painted on, or decals. They are actually transfered onto the glass. Intentionally rustic!



How could I not do crows and nests?


I'm in love with this series. Photo transfer technique again. I think was worth the struggle.



Some examples of the floral in the new "Rustic" Line. Photo transfer. One example of what I was struggling with so hard early this year.


Mysterious, foggy tree from the Delicate Line.


Some of the Damask in the Delicate Line

It's great to finally have photos of my newest work to show. I'm proud of it, and proud of myself for pushing through the very thick wall to get to some new work for the year. And very, very grateful that it was well received at the shows.

PS. the photos are all taken as I walked around my neighborhood, the photos were done by Karl Seifert in Philadelphia, who did my photos last year too!

Yippee!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

practice

It has floated up to my attention (in yet a new way) that there is something to learn from and about my struggles around transitions.

Primarily transitions from one energetic state to another.

I've noticed that I constantly struggling against a desire to "go unconscious", to go deep into habit, pattern... just somehow "away". And transitioning from that inward, quiet, still state to a more active state is a big struggle for me.

Big.

Even though I really enjoy (for the most part) the other state once I'm there.

There is nothing in my life (currently) that I need to escape from (well, bill collectors as I am working to get the coffers built back up after the expensive east coast shows not withstanding...). It's habitual. From somewhere in my past.

I like my life now. Love it, actually.

But I've become aware that that desire to "go unconscious" is a strong, seductive and habitual mode of being.

It has the power of gravity.

I've been pondering, extending my intent to understand it more deeply (since fighting it is only somewhat effective and has begun to feel very harsh).

An image came to me of a large barbed lure, kind of like a fishing lure on a line. My struggle to move gracefully into transitions feels metaphorically like I am trying to pull it out against the barbs and it gets stuck. With my formidable and well-honed will-power (often a necessary and useful strength) I pull harder and harder until it comes out, ripping flesh and tissue. I force myself to ignore the discomfort, to push through out of shear force of will.

I think there may be another way.

One that doesn't rely solely on force.

Maybe just save that formidable willpower for real crises?

During the meditation in yoga today it occurred to me that I might be able to tug on it gently from the other direction, and perhaps it could slide out more easily without the barbs digging in and ripping me as I pull so very hard.

Presence in the moment is one of the keys I think. Really noticing that today there is nothing to fear in a more conscious experience of all the various states. Assess in current time the actual experience compared with the anticipated...

I can handle it. I'm a grown up woman.

Unconsciousness might not be the only safe, centered, or pleasant state available to me.

I've decided that is my current practice.

(but don't think for a moment I'm giving up my weekend mid-day naps!)

Saturday, March 20, 2010

was it really over a week ago?



So last week (or sometime in what feels like the distant past) I got my shipment back from the east coast. I paid one of T.'s sons to help schlep the work into the house, while putting the show gear into the shed.

Well, as you can see we had a tower of boxes filling the living room, and by the end the tower nearly reached the ceiling.

An old friend I haven't seen for at least 8 years called and wanted to come visit that evening.

I suggested a restaurant instead.

He suggested meeting me here at the house, as the restaurant is in the neighborhood and we could walk together.

It seemed very odd for me to tell him I didn't want him to come to the house, as he had spent much time here in the past.

So I warned him.

Even so, when he walked in he kind of gulped and said "I really like seeing people's work spaces."

Oh dear. Reputation ruined forever.

During the process of unpacking my kitty was in absolute bliss. There is NOTHING he loves more than plastic bags full of packing peanuts. Actually anything resembling a plastic bag. Apparently kitties can have their kinks as well.He likes boxes too, but they fall short of absolute over-the-top love.

He climbs inside them and just sits.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

curve balls

Have you ever noticed that balls don't always land where you throw them?
I'm just sayin'.



And on another note, work is progressing. SO many orders to fill I am anxious to get my shipment back from Baltimore so that we can fill some orders with the surplus inventory shipped there. It will feel like we're rolling again! (and most important, that the money is rolling in THIS direction again... bills to pay!)

Actively looking for another helper, starting with word of mouth, but if that doesn't result in the right person very soon I will leap into the Craig's List storm. Every time I've posted a gig on Craig's List I've had at least 50-65 responses. It is rather overwhelming for me, although I've been quite fortunate each time.

And then there is that sad feeling that there are SO many people looking so hard for minimum-pay work, at least as a starting/training wage.

I feel full of gratefulness to have job security for the next year.

Very, very grateful.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

snippets and bits

I'm HOME.

Yes, I am still relishing that fact.

I have stories I've been wanting to tell, they are fading fast.

So I will post a few random photos from the end of the trip(s) and see if I can remember what I wanted to tell about them.

I'd have more photos and more stories if, on the last day of the last show my camera had not acted all princess-y and told me it's poor little barely used battery was "exhausted".

I was more than a little derisive about it's complaint and refusal to keep on trucking, to metaphorically hold the back of it's hand against it's forehead and faint away--when I'D BEEN ACTUALLY WORKING BEYOND ANY REALISTIC LIMIT OF EXHAUSTION and IT had been riding along in my bag snapping a quick shot a couple times here or there.

Taking things a little personally? Projecting a bit onto an inanimate object? Hell no!

But now, in no particular order:

This was my booth neighbor at the Baltimore show. His name is Dale Rogers, he is a sculptor, and one of the very nicest, most adorable, most fun guys a girl could have as her booth neighbor. During shows our booth-neighbors become like family. A quick intimacy of shared days, hopes, struggles, hard work. When we see each other again someplace "down the road" we will hug and greet each other like long lost friends. That's just how it is in this life.



What is the deal with the housecleaning staff always pointing the toilet paper in my hotel rooms every day? When rooming with others, it always seems a bit like winning a prize when I get to be the one to "use the point". I must admit the points sort of delight me, but still... what's the deal? (or the point, more to the point...).


I called these two the goofy girls. My cousin from Idaho and her friend Beverly (who lives in Baltimore). They both came to help tear down on the last day. We went to my hotel lounge for drinks and a bite after. They are a pair of total goofs when they are together, and I think proximity increases it exponentially. What a pair, they never stopped laughing! It all seems like a memory of a dream or a movie, I was seeing and hearing them from the blur of exhaustion.


Cousins. Exhausted me and Miss Rebecca.


Exhausted me. showing off that I can do a sort of tree pose AFTER a martini, holding another in my hand.
HA! Take THAT, oh poor "exhausted" phone battery. Hrrumpf.

And last:

The next morning I took a train from Baltimore to Philly to catch my flight home (HOME!) and this is a shot from the taxi ride from train station to airport. This guy was a hoot. He never, not once, quit talking. About the details (details, I tell you!) of his last vacation with his wife.

"..and we stayed in the condo, it had wood floors and a balcony, and you had to walk down 3 steps, they were wooden steps you know? and then we could take our umbrellas, they had a place we could leave them, oh and a shower to rinse off, right at those steps, the 3 wooden ones, and we always eat at buffets, there is nothing better, we tried Applebees one time but they told me I couldn't have any bread or rolls because they didn't have any but then my wife got some garlic bread with her dinner and you know for that money I could have had anything I wanted at a buffet, I mean they've got ham and chicken (fixed you know, either roasted or fried, and lots of anything you could ever want and even prime rib or fish if you eat it and you can always have your rolls with your dinner and you can have everything you want and I don't see why anyone would want to eat anywhere else, so when we would leave our condo and go down those 3 wooden steps we only had to walk to the right about 5 minutes to get to one buffet and then if we wanted a different one, we just walked about 10 minutes, well actually it was more like 7 minutes further and they had even better choices..."

When I got to the Philly airport I had a lot of time to wait so I walked up and down all the different terminals checking it all out, scoping out where I wanted to eat before my flight. I ended up getting my nails done and painted a deep red (Ha! the polish has lasted all of 3 days, but it was fun) and eating sushi. Love that. Then got crammed into a full plane, plugged in my tunes, and managed to doze a bit until arriving HOME!

Since then it's been a full day of naps (each and every activity required a nap to recover..), a total love-fest with my kitty, and going through re-entry transition. I now have to figure out how in the world we are going to fill all the gallery orders I wrote while at the shows. This week I will have to brave my trepidation and post an ad on Craig's List for an additional assistant.

NOT a bad problem to have!

So here I am again, back to the daily life of making a living as an artist sort of person.

And did I mention I'm glad to be home?

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Home

Coffee in lap, kitten in cup.

Well, that's what I just wrote in response to a comment.

But it seems about right.

Except somehow the coffee knows how to purr I guess.


A bunch of random photos and stories from the shows will follow.

Maybe today, maybe not.

But sometime.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Home

I'm home.

My kitty is purring and biting.

My luggage is on the floor of the kitchen, with only my toothbrush and computer unpacked.

I had some gin.

I'm going to bed.

I'm SO happy to be home I even shed a few tears.

Tomorrow the only thing on my list is:

NOTHING!

Good night.

planes, trains and automobiles

I had to get another chunk of internet time after all, to handle a (hopefully!) last shipping near catastrophe. But it's handled, and now the shipment is on it's way home.

Soon this sack of cells some would call Melinda will be home too.

The schedule for the day:

1: workout on fitness center treadmill for 30 minutes to purge some of the stress hormones.

2: pack

3: taxi to train station

4: train to Philly

5: taxi to airport

6: fly to Seattle

7. B comes to pick me up

8. I hug my kitty

9. my kitty scratches and bites me

10. I take enough of a dose to keep me asleep for at least 10 hours.

11. I do absolutely nothing the entire next day that I am not in the mood for.

12. The day after, I climb back on the horse--already have a sandblasting reservation.

And so the year will begin again.

Off now, to finish the list for today!