Life is large. Life is good…

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May was B U S Y!!! It wasn’t originally planned that way, but life happens… throw in a 10 day vacation to New Mexico with Mr. French to celebrate a special anniversary and POOF! it’s June!!! But traveling is always inspiring and uplifting… and going to New Mexico just grounds my soul and makes my creativity sing. We explored the many, many art galleries along Canyon Road in Sante Fe, we ate sumptuous tapas at El Farol. We climbed up into the rock caves in Bandelier, we explored Plaza Blanca, the White Place, that Georgia O’Keeffe made famous in in her paintings. We visited Sam Brown of Abiquiu, an artist that does amazing spiral paintings and makes spirals with rocks in his gardens. And we experienced a very special workshop at Ghost Ranch with Catherine Anderson… Photographing the Space between Heaven and Earth. I took enough photos for a years worth of inspired paintings. I learned how to take macro photos with my iPhone and a small Lens embedded in a rubber band! We met wonderful, heart-full souls in the workshop who shared our love of nature and photography.

We hiked and we hiked…We hiked a rocky switchback trail high up (7100′) to Chimney Rock… we were on top of the world and we had it all to ourselves. We hiked into Box Canyon. We hiked a cliff trail that overlooked turquoise Abiquiu Lake and had a close view of the dark and brooding Pedernal (above) in the distance. We hiked up to our Tumbleweed Casita at the ranch. I walked a Ghost Ranch Labyrinth. We documented our time with photos and art and journaling…

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And I made a book (thanks to Catherine Anderson) with some of our photos when we returned home…

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From my journal – Just some words today…

I pledge allegiance to the Earth, and to the flora, fauna and human life that it supports, one planet, indivisible, with safe air, water and soil, economic justice, equal rights and peace for all. –Women’s Foreign Policy Council

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action; and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. If you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not have it. You must keep that channel open. It is not for you to determine how good it is, nor how valuable. Nor how it compares with other expressions. It is for you to keep it yours, clearly and directly.” —Martha Graham

From my journal – The Four Elements

I can’t believe it’s September 5 already, can you??? I’ve been journaling and painting and making Dream Catchers. These are journal pages from the Spectrum online workshops I’ve been doing over the course of the last few months. This was a great exercise using photography for information gathering and for inspiration.

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From my journal – New little books

I’ve been having fun making little journal books from brown paper. One of these is my “Creative Practice” log book, made so I can keep track of how much time I really spend in the art studio and what I am working on. I put a small entry for every day. The other little book is for small gratitudes.

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From my journal – Hello July!

As you might already know, I like to do an opening spread of pages for the beginning of each month. Here I set some intentions, take a little time thinking about what I would like in the days ahead… I have been wanting to step up and commit to my creative practice, a regular daily thing. It’s been sadly sporadic. So… I have challenged myself with a watercolor a day (along with my usual journal pages). Just small – 8″ x 8″ – so I’ll be posting some of those soon. Four are done already! AND… I have just completed stretching and gessoing 14 square canvases of various sizes and those are staring me down too! Happy 4th! Happy July! Happy Summer! do something FUN!

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Something new – Letter Journals!

I wrote a couple of letters in some handmade books. They were made from a mish-mash of collage, magazine pages, paper doilies, envelopes, and old paintings on paper…. I left some pages blank and wrote handwritten letters. After doing these I discovered that there’s a whole group of journalers who make these and send them round-robin for collaboration and fun… does anybody want to make one for me?

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