Thursday, June 23, 2011

Lust for Australia

I stumbled upon a blog today that I have added to my blogroll and shall visit with some regularity, I think. It's called Though small it is tasty. The person who writes it (Meg, I believe) has a the same adventurous spirit about food that I have...I like that in a human. That fact that the writer lives in Brisbane (I think) makes it that much more intriguing. I visited Brisbane once long, long ago...about 1995, I think. I loved it. I want to go back.

Another blogger who has since moved back "home" to the Netherlands from a brief (2 years or so) stint in Australia used to write about her life in Australia (on the other Adelaide). After reading her blog, viewing her photos, and getting wrapped up in her life there, I was ready to move...or at least make a trip. I suspect, after having read bits of Though small it is tasty, I may develop that same lust for Australia again. This time, though, I may be in a position to actually do something about it within the next few months. Of course, I'll have to sell my soul do to it, which probably won't bring much...I may have to take a freighter to make the crossing. Because a former staff member lives in Sydney now, I may be able to find someone there, too, to at least help find cheap hotels or direct us to an elder-hostel.

Ah, well, I best not make expensive plans just yet. I have to first get used to abject poverty.

Monday, June 13, 2011

A New Chapter


What hath this madness wrought? I did it.

Today, I announced the closure of the latest professional chapter in my life. My clients now know; October 31 is my version of the rapture. There will be enormous amounts of work between now and then to prepare for the transition.

And, there is the distinct possibility that one or more of them will implore me to stay for awhile to help with the transition. But, for all intents and purposes, October 31 will mark the day on which my business, as it has operated for 13 years, will cease. I'm not shutting it down, just making it into a shell that I may, or may not, resurrect later.

Now, I have a request: though the chief volunteer leaders of my client groups know, the rest of world does not. Please allow me to keep it that way for a while longer. Do not post congratulations on my other blogs or Facebook pages, etc.; while I would love to read them, I still must let things play out as they will.

I am at once elated and terrified of a life lived in perpetual poverty. But I am so, so, so ready to experience it!

Sunday, June 12, 2011


This tune was performed in public by Girlyman for the first time last night (6.11.2011) in Fort Worth.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Creativity...Art...Vision...Or Not?

Having not painted, or having not painted "art," for quite some time, my latest attempt was a somewhat shocking reminder that, absent the technique and skill, one's vision simply cannot be transferred to canvas.

That disappointing realization led me on a thought odyssey that raised more questions than it answered. The principal question it raised was this: does the creativity represented by visual art lay within the vision upon which a piece of art was based, or does it lay within the execution of the vision? Or is it the amalgamation of the vision and the techniques and technical skills required to execute the vision? Perhaps there are more options; perhaps artistic creativity is simply an elegant adjustment of one's technical limitations to one's vision, resulting in art that successfully integrates one's skill level with one's vision.

Ultimately, I think it can be reduced to this: despite the logic and legitimacy of the arguments that define creativity, creativity is a highly personal experience. I believe it can be intensely satisfying to the artist when the vision matches the artist's technical skills. But it can be intensely frustrating when they are on different planes.

When I shift the discussion to another creative landscape with which I am more familiar, that of using the written word, it becomes clearer to me. There, it seems to me, the "success" of the product requires successfully merging creative vision with technical capabilities. Exquisite technical capabilities, without the underlying vision, results in flat, dull, unremarkable language art. Intense creative vision without the technical skills for execution results in frustratingly chaotic word-bursts on the page.

Maybe I've answered my own questions, after all. There's creativity in my vision for the visual art I want to paint. But the frustrating paint-bursts on the canvas revealed the absence of the technical capabilities to carry it to fruition.

I've long believed the core capabilities of a writer are formed very early in life, perhaps before one finishes middle school. Those capabilities emerge through the use of language, early practice, and through perhaps an innate appreciation of language and what it can do. While those capabilities can be improved, honed, and refined later on, they cannot be created later on without that earlier foundation. So, too, I think, the core capabilities of a visual artist probably emerge early; if they are nurtured early and practices and developed, they can be refined later. But I doubt the technical skills required to translate vision into visual art can be successfully created later on. A certain level of mechanical skills may be acquired late, but that magical mix of vision and execution seem, to me, to require a foundation that can't be built after the walls are up.

At least that's what I think this morning.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Sharing Treasure

I have more treasures to share with you:

Remodelista: Sourebook for the Considered Home, an uber-intriguing interior design/architecture "blog" of sorts., a great blog from whence came the thunderstorm video in the adjacent post.

Peace and Love and Noticing the Details, a blog by Anne Herbert, that strikes a chord very, very deep within me.

Wonderful Thunderstorm Video

Watch this, if you can, on full-screen, in HD mode. It is, at once, deeply relaxing and highly energizing.

Hector Thunderstorm Project from Murray Fredericks.