HANDS on …

wedding vow artI shared one of these pieces (left) on social media some time ago, but hadn’t shared it here on my blog. I have also since created another piece (right). Both of these were commissioned by an old co-worker from my Architecture firm days. I’ll be honest, I really wasn’t sure how to do this. However, I knew I COULD do it. So, I said yes. Eek. And then I thought about it a whole lot, like a lot a lot; and fear made me ignore it at times; and then motivation set back in, and I played around with different lettering and techniques. It took me 3 or 4 tries to fit all the words I needed inside one heart. That’s a lot of calligraphy practice! See, there’s good in everything. I truly enjoyed the process from start to finish, even in those WTF moments ;)

I thought I had it down pat so the 2nd piece should go so much faster … and then my creative brain stepped in and decided that it needed to be in a completely different font. Which basically changed everything that I learned from doing the first piece. I went with it though … call it intuition (this just feels right) or boredom (not wanting to make the same thing again) or challenge (keep it easy for myself. now, that’s just silly). A bit of all of them, I presume. Whatever it was, it led to a very lovely piece of art for another lovely couple.

And I got to create. With my hands. Those handy hands that continue to make cool shit. Team work – heart, soul, hands, brain, energy – connection between me and those that I create for.

We are all connected in one way or another.

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extension of SELF …

The more creative things I do, the more I am realizing how these things I create are truly an extension of me. I mean, I get this, like from a logical mind standpoint. Now, I’m FEELING it. My art is my truth. I’m getting more and more comfortable with sharing my truth and LIVING my truth, and in turn, I am getting more comfortable with sharing my art and not needing anyone else’s praise to validate my creations/talent (although, I’m totally cool with this FYI). This is because I love meeeee so much more than ever and I trust in me and in my abilities. And I create because I love it, like really love it.

Sometimes, I get these cravings in my body to do something creative. It’s kind of like feeling horny, but I feel crafty. Anyone else get that? Anyone? …

So anywho, this self-acceptance did not come easily to me for most of my life. Therefore, I hid my talent from everyone and most importantly, myself. Interestingly, the shift in my own mindset came about from other people trusting in me more than I consciously trusted in me. When I lived at the Omega Institute, a woman looked at something I was making and told me that not just anyone can do that. Really? Cause, I honestly didn’t think there was anything special about me and my abilities. She definitely struck something in me …

Then, I started working at lululemon 2 months after Omega and I wrote out some of our chalk nameplates because, simply, “I liked handwriting.” Everyone I worked with saw my nice handwriting as so much more than that though. They asked me to hand-write all the nameplates whenever product was moved around or new product came in. I was happy to oblige. And then … THEN, they asked me to do more and bigger things with chalk. “Huh? Me? I can’t do that.” (I said that more often in my head than out loud.) So, I did them. Slowly, like reeeeeally sloooooowly, at first. They liked it. I did more. I got faster. Because I got more confident. And started to recognize my talent, rather than just accepting that other people liked what I did. Wow, I didn’t realize I had this inside me. Pretty fucking awesome.

Creativity and finding my truth have gone hand and hand for me these past couple of years. I create to find my truth and finding my truth helps me create – to create organically, with no agenda or need. Well, sometimes, I have an art job that needs to get done. However, it still feels more like something I want to do and am happy to do. That’s HUGE!

OK, so why the pics of my furniture, other than the fact that they are my creations? I was thinking one day about the process of furniture designing. I doodle. Those doodles turn into potential furniture pieces. I then expand on the ones that speak to me. And I break them down to figure out how to build them – the hardware, the materials, the joinery, the dimensions, etc. I change the design as needed to make it buildable and structural and usable. This is my life. I doodle. Exploring new things. New adventures. I then expand on those that speak to me. And I break them down to figure out if they are truly an extension of me – am I passionate about this? Does it serve me? What support do I need? Can I build on myself and grow as a person? What do I need to do this? I try things. I change them as needed. I trust in the person I’ve created. As I trust in the furniture I’ve created. Both strong. Both beautiful. Both built of energy and love. Hell yeah!

All of these strong, beautiful, energetic and loving creations are for sale by the way. The furniture, that is. Not me ;)

www.etsy.com/shop/firstlightcreative

 

 

letter FLOW …

Remember I said I’d share some of my mad fauxlligraphy skillz with you, well here’s a little sample. These were name tags I made for a work event. I was so grateful to be asked to do them and soooo enjoyed the entire creative process! It’s usually more enjoyable when they look this bad ass ;)

Need some cool lettering done? Holla.

so many nibs, so little time …

I just spent at least a half hour cleaning these beauties. Nooooow, it’s time to use them to make more beautiful things! As you can see, these are old school. How cool is the packaging, riiiight? They were my dad’s from back in the day, hence his name written multiple times with multiple nibs. So many nibs to choose from. I’ll start simple and small at first. Those huge nibs do get me excited though … wow, that sounded naughty ;)

As I was cleaning these, I was exploring the intricacy of these rather small objects and how they operate. Of course, I asked the question how did someone figure out how to make a nib work?! You dip this metal object in ink and it holds the ink in a tiny hole that allows it to flow consistently at each stroke. Say whaaaaa?!? Like how did you figure that out Mr. Calligraphy man?!? You are my hero.

Well, I’m off to go write a bunch of potentially meaningful words now with these fascinating pieces of art … actually, I’m going to just write each letter of the alphabet 50 times. Not quite as fun, but practice makes perfect so they say :)

I DIP you dip we dip …

My first stab at using a dip calligraphy pen (not all that beautiful … yet). I’ve used calligraphy markers and calligraphy pens with an ink cartridge … dipping feels different. As in it feels more artistic and more flowy and more real and more like something I can’t put into words. Script-writing is a beautiful art form that is sadly being eliminated from children’s education (so I’ve heard). Please teach your children script and lettering. I hadn’t thought of it so much as a form of artistic expression until I got a calligraphy marker in my hands a little over a year ago. And something I never knew I had was released. Oh, and I don’t think I’ve even shared my mad fauxlligraphy skillz on my blog yet. Damn, what have I been waiting for?! Ok, I’ll share soon. Promise.

FREE yourself and the rest will follow …


I was freely hand-lettering the other day while sitting outside on a bench at Blue Cliff Monastery enjoying the beautiful surroundings, warm sunshine and calming energy. What better place to create. So I was scrolling some letters around the page of my sketchbook and the word free (as shown above) came to be. 

It seemed appropriate on this day of freeing myself from my usual day activities to take this adventure to Blue Cliff to join the monks for a gorgeous morning walking meditation, a dharma talk and a mindful lunch in silence. Sure, there were moments of feeling trapped in my head or in the discomfort of lunching in silence with a person sitting right in front of me, however, it was all exactly where I needed to be and experience at that moment and it was perfect and peaceful…and free