Saturday, September 20, 2014
I learned to waltz about fifteen years ago. I had probably waltzed a handful of times up till then. I waltzed the ordinary follow along my feet with his feet and count one, two, three, one, two, three.. and do what I could to get through. Then nearly fifteen years ago I learned the real way to waltz. Sliding my feet across the floor to beautiful waltz's. I was self conscious and overly apologetic. I didn't want to make any mistakes. I looked at my feet and never my partners eyes. Finally, I danced with a thoughtful and beautiful man younger than me, that noticed my discomfort and asked me to do him a favor. He said, "close your eyes". I said ok and with wreckless abandon I decided to put my full trust into his capable arms. I'd seen him dance so many times that I trusted his dance ability. Suddenly the music seemed to take over my body. I felt in rhythm with my feet and I seemed to have this ability to move with the music and the man with little effort. The apologies disappeared. I felt like a little girl gliding on a swing. His subtle touches coaxed me into the moves he wanted to make, making me feel as though I was a long time dancer. I honestly felt as though I were gliding across the floor. This was the first waltz of the rest of my waltzing experiences. This became the first of many waltz's that has always given me a mountain of joy. It is one area of my life that consistently fails to disappoint me. Today's face is attached to a moment of waltzing with a man that I call a friend. Someone I have great dance chemistry with. I credit the face with the photographer who took the photo Dave Pokorney, a fellow dancing friend that takes great photos.
If you have never waltzed, your missing out. It can be exhilarating, frivolous, joyful, seductive and magical if you can give yourself to the music. Be in the music and be in the moment and never do I feel so alive or in a moment of blissful loving joy, then when I am dancing. This is what dancing is like for me. This is the face of dancing joy ... this is me.
If you would like this face of joy just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Have a joy filled day and I hope you dance!!! See you tomorrow.
Friday, September 19, 2014
I love all the babies that have arrived in my life. I feel very blessed.
So it's evolving into what it is. I am learning so much about this whole portrait painting process. It's all really good so far. Some days I can't be objective about the work. But I have been getting feedback from the buyers of the portraits. Which is validating.
Now time to relax and enjoy the rest of the day .. or evening as it seems to be .. where did all the time go? Thank you for stopping over. I always like to hear comments if your so inclined. If you would like to have this sweet child on your wall . just email me at email@example.com. See you tomorrow.
Thursday, September 18, 2014
I don't always notice how I think of the stories I wish to tell .. it's probably the influence of things I read or see or hear.. I guess that's what most people do.
Either way it matters not .. these eyes and this face reminds me of a memory of riding horses.
While living in Africa, I remember taking riding lessons. I think this was one of my favorite things about living there. We lived a few blocks away from a horse stable, where my mom would often take us to go riding. I don't recall my sister coming, but my brother and my mom would usually go with me. I would always ask to ride Shambell. She was a big black stallion. I loved her. My brother would ride Knockifa I have to say that their names may not have been spelled this way. But I write them today in the way that I remember them. We would also go riding with a guide. The stables were crudely built but the horses seemed well taken care of. We would ride for an hour, traversing around the beautiful countryside. We could run and jump streams or sticks. It was so much fun. Every single birthday from that time on I would have the cake placed in front of me with the instructions to blow out the candles and make a wish and a horse was always my wish. Until I grew out of making wishes. I loved the horses. I loved their big soulful eyes. I loved how it felt to ride and glide along in rythym with the horses movements and it was magical. I knew the horses saw me and understood me. I just knew. I had many happy rides on Shambell. I know that wishes can come true at any time in life. I don't want a horse anymore. I lost interest when trying to horseback ride in the states. I never found another place that let you ride the way we did in Africa.I recall telling my father recently that I wished for a horse when I was a child. He said he was glad he didn't know. I know that horses are expensive to take care of. Its ok. I still have my memories. I hope that I don't forget them. I hope I don't ever forget .. and I am grateful to remember. That is this face ..thinking of horses.
If you would love to have this face email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. See you tomorrow.
Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Today I had to see once again if I could paint a baby .. I've always been afraid of painting people I knew because I thought if I got it wrong I would offend or hurt them somehow.. But these are babies that I'm painting .. my grand babies.
So today's face is $41.. email me at email@example.com .. see you tomorrow.
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Practicing is always impactful I get excited just thinking about continuing with the practice of daily painting.
Today's face reminds me of a friend of mine that I never met. Someone who's name was Jim. Someone who reached out to me when my life was a fast moving train headed for a jumbled up mess of a derailment. He was the steady voice of reason when nothing made sense in my life. He would always tell me that I could not see in other's what wasn't in me. It's kind of like the opposite of another statement that I have also heard before. Which is if you see it (typically a character defect) then you own it. When you are mad at someone's behavior that you see it is because you see the reflection of yourself in that person. The same can be true about love. I don't know if these things are the absolute truth or not. But I can tell you a story about meeting a man that I never met in person, and how it impacted my life.
Last night I saw a question on a social media site by a new mom asking her contacts or friend's to tell their experience with raising children. Her question made me think of Jim. I remember while in an emotionally painful time in my life I was floundering in a sea of negative fearful perceptions. My trust recently shattered like a mirror dropped on marble floor. I feel fortunate that there were a few people then that offered me compassion and time when I needed it most. Cut to the core, I could only seek out this man and tell him my story with fear and in a hurry. What happened really isn't important at this point because don't we all have some kind of story of our own? What is important is that he spent time listening to my story. He heard all my pain, all my hurt, all my experience with those and never left. He always heard everything I had to say. I had a LOT to say. He knew that I had a mountain of hurt. I would talk and talk and talk and as an hour would pass he would thoughtfully drop hints that he needed to get a drink of water soon .. or say . going to have to go soon. I talked until I was exhausted.. when it came time for him to go .. I would ask if he would be back tomorrow? He said he would, I asked if he was going to leave now. ? He said I will sign off when you sign off. This is the clue about where I met him. Yes he was online. He would always wait till I left. He never left first. In my hurt I never saw his thoughtfulness or consideration but gradually I was able to trust him. So you could say that I came to him with a huge cavern in my heart and unable to trust anything. He did so much just to listen. Finally, I didn't worry that he might not come back .. i trusted that he would listen and I slowly began to believe this idea that I couldn't see anything in other people that was not in me. I began to feel gratitude for his time and for his consistent compassionate voice. His way was unlike any other person I had ever known. He was always appropriate and kind. Finally, I could express my gratitude to him often. I felt after a long time that he always had kindness and care and truly had my best interest at heart. I felt that I could tell this man, who I never met that I loved him. No one else did what he could do.. at a time when I desperately needed it. I had big love in my heart for his kindness .. i could feel this love in my body, like feeling a pillow on my chest .. like a hug from a loving person. I told him that I loved him. And he said to me .. you love the reflection of yourself that you see in me. Remember, you cannot see in other's what is not inside of you. It seems strange to say this but I felt an amazing thing happen at that moment. I felt for just a moment that I could feel this big love for my self. It was a wonderously fabulous feeling. I felt as though so much came together at that time. I could see the breaking of long held views against ideas of loving yourself as if to love yourself would mean you were vain or selfish. That to love your self somehow meant you were conceited or loved to look in a mirror. But it was none of those things. It was believing that there was something inherently good and loveable about my self. That I had some value that was worth spending time with, or working hard for. I was worth believing in. Now if you ask yourself if you love yourself and your first thought is that it feels strange or uncomfortable try to see the goodness in other's. Think of the one person you love the most and why, and imagine that those qualities are in yourself. I think this is what the verse in the bible means when it that says for us to love our neighbors as our selves. This is the kind of love you want to have or you cannot love other's. Makes sense to me that if you do not like yourself you are likely to feel the same about other's. So .. this face today may seem intense in some ways.. that's what Jim was like for me. An intense lesson in how to love yourself and the importance of it. It's good to have a reminder of it. When you love yourself you can love others. You can have compassion for people when they are angry because they are just showing you how they feel about themselves. You can respond with compassion to them. So the question from the young mother.. about the best experiences of parenting a child made me want to tell her to teach her children to love them selves. This is to me the most important thing to teach them. The rest will unfold in its own way.
Thank you for following my journey and for reading if you do .. or even just looking at my portraits. I do so appreciate it. If you would like to own today's portrait I am calling Jim. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. It's $40 today. Thank you .. see you tomorrow.
Monday, September 15, 2014
Interesting to note that I can't think with noise.
I am house and dog sitting. Which requires me to relocate my paints and routine to continue what I am doing. A challenge but a few perks as well. A pool to swim in during the noon day sun. Always pleasant. Nice to see if I can manage the changes and still honor the commitment. So far so good.
But I am off here today ... i suppose this will become like a road map of my time.
Every day isn't a story of the past ..
Some days are just stories of the present.
With gratitude in the eyes.. inspite of life, I am in gratitude. There is still something to look forward too.
If you would like to have today's portrait. IT's day #39 and $39. Email me at email@example.com. I have to say that the photo's of these portraits really do not give them justice. The excitement for me is in the details. Which reminds me .. last night while Skyping with my son and to wish my grandson a happy birthday, the eldest grandson who is six had an opinion of the face I painted yesterday. My son laughed and I laughed. HE told me that yesterday's face was creepy and detailed. I love it... see you tomorrow.
Sunday, September 14, 2014
I am finding that I am amazed by the validation I get that my thinking isn't always correct. I have to constantly practice letting go .. Really, there are some really wonderful things going on and I will reveal them as they happen.
So for these words sing .. I'll tell a funny little story that it makes me think of. While living in Africa and attending a small military installation American school, the last year we were there I was in the fifth grade. I had an eccentric teacher that was male and an artist but he taught all subjects. There were always alot of art projects around the different subjects we covered. His name was Mr. Ludwig. He had a silver ear cleaner. Just saying that makes me laugh. This day I came to school we all were going to the library. I quietly went along with all the other children and when we got there he asked me if I had my book. I forgot, was my middle name back then. This was my answer to him and he was clearly not happy with me for doing that so he yelled for me to go back to the classroom. Which I did. The rest of the students got to stay in the library to do whatever they were doing and I had to go back to class. The teacher followed me and I just sat at my desk doing nothing while he pleased himself reading something. This was my punishment. While sitting there .. a teacher came into the room. I could hear the conversation. It was about the future visit of the Emperor to the school. They needed some children to sing some songs to him. They would have to learn an Amharic song and they would have to be able to carry a tune. Then I heard him ask if he knew any children that could sing. I did sing in the choir. I decided to sing out my own praises .. I CAN SING .. i yelled across the room. My teacher swung around and said "you can???" I said "yes I sing in the choir" My teacher said "well be at room 12 at 2 pm today and you better not disappoint me and sing good. I was so excited and I couldn't believe my luck. Imagine what a lesson that was .. I was grateful that my forgetfulness got me such a neat opportunity. I also got to go to the downtown market and have a traditional dress made for me and of course I know that song still today. I'd sing it for you if you asked me to.
So even though it's the end of the day .. I still painted my face of the day on Day 38. So today's portrait is $38. IF you would like to have the girl with a sing .. on your wall email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Have a good night .. See you tomorrow ..