Saturday, May 22, 2010

this month's inspirations and distractions...

I have only been posting once a week here lately.  I feel like I am running a marathon.  For the next four weeks, I am teaching two classes on cross cultural psychology at the local university.  I love the class and I feel it is so important- but with the baby, my daughter, and my regular job- I am thinking this maybe my last semester.  We will see.  I love the passionate voices, the debates about racism, and the way I can feel like an ally to those who are disenfranchised by psychology... but the classes have me working very long hours- I get home after the kids are already asleep twice a week.  I know it is just for four weeks, but I still can't help but feel so guilty.   I also feel like it is hard to get art time in.  But, I thought I would share some of the things I have been thinking about lately:-)

Since my last post, I thought I would include a little picture from my daughter. I have a watercolor station set up on the dining room table.  She paints at least ten pictures a day.  She has always loved to make a mark.  I try very hard to intersperse her paintings with mine around the house.  She talks about how we are artists.  I love it.  I think she is pretty advanced for three and a half!  (But of course, I am her mother.)  But seriously, don't you love those color choices!

 I also was feeling a bit guilty about not talking very much about my sweet little Leo.  He is so quiet and non-demanding, that I am afraid he often doesn't get the same attention as his sister.  I realized that I haven't even played with his image yet!  So, I decided to use the picture I took of him this morning at Caya's dance class and have some fun with Photoshop.  I think he will have to be a painting very soon.  (I have already started a Caya inspired tantrum painting- but he is definitely next!)
  Weather permitting, I will take some nice images of my newest Frida painting and offer a print this week as a giveaway.  I hope everyone is having a lovely weekend...

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Little Frida

I finished a painting this evening- which makes me unbelievably happy.  I started this painting to donate to an auction- but somewhere in the middle, I realized I was painting about my daughter and couldn't give it up.  The painting started as a little Frida.  I have always loved painting Frida.  As a tragic teenager who loved to make art, Frida was my heroine.  Twenty-six years later, and I still can't get enough of her image.  I remember the first real life Frida painting I ever saw on tour in San Antonio- I couldn't stop crying.  She moves me. 
Another person who moves me is my daughter.  She is an amazing little person.  She is so smart that she can frighten me.  She spoke a hundred words when she was one. (my husband and I counted) She is extremely verbal and worries about black holes.  She is only three.  She sits in front of the mirror staring at her reflection as she makes different expressions.  Caya happy.  Caya sad.  Caya surprised.  She says she will never stop looking at herself- because she loves herself.  She draws unbelievable little people with eyelashes and tutus that dance, cry, and have babies.  She sings songs that she makes up with beautiful  melodies about how much she loves me.  She can also throw a tantrum that can make my blood curdle.  She is already telling me that I am ruining her life- just because she can't wear her favorite dress to eat spaghetti.  Her new sibling has only increased her penchant for drama.  Again she is only three.  Through her, I am learning how to be patient and accept her for all that she is- but it is not always easy.  I still can't believe I taught parenting classes.  I clearly didn't know anything at all about raising a child.
So- in this painting, I began to wonder about Frida.  I started stamping in the background... "I wonder what you were like when you were a little girl.  Were you exquisitely sensitive?  Could you throw a terrible tantrum when things did not go your way?  Could you be silly?  Did you want to be a princess?  Did you know that you were beautiful- wonderful?"   I answered on her dress "yes".

Saturday, May 8, 2010


First- sorry I haven't written in a couple of weeks!  Life has been hectic.. as usual.  I wonder sometimes how I manage to be so busy.  I sometimes think that there is something about my constitution that hates sitting still.  Maybe it is the ADHD.  Not sure exactly.  I need to work on my ability to say "NO"... but I think that is pretty much like most women I know.  So, I end up seizing every opportunity and stretching myself to the point of almost breaking... and as long as I don't break, I don't really learn my lesson.
My biggest distraction was definitely my trip to Texas and my brother's wedding.  My mother is doing so well.  The cancer is in remission and she was able to hold her grandson for the first time.  So much of her illness I repressed while I was pregnant and after Leo's birth.  It was too much to think of my mother struggling with cancer.  I called her daily- I prayed- but I didn't really let the full recognition of what was happening seep into my psyche.  Seeing her dance with my brother at the wedding made me realize that I could have lost her.  It broke me.  I cried through the whole song.   I feel so blessed that she is healing and strong.  I also realized that I want to move closer to my family as soon as possible...
Other distractions- I am still moving things around my home... trying to create spaces for all of the creative people in our family.  I need an art studio, my husband needs a music studio, and my children need a dedicated space to play.  I will post some pictures this week of my little studio thus far...
I also finished a painting for another non-profit auction.  It was for "Project Commotion" which does movement based work with children.  I worked on a painting for a while- then realized that it was about my daughter and I couldn't donate it.  More about that later.  I finally finished an old painting.  I think I started it when I wanted to escape.  Not really feeling like escaping anymore, I just kind of would like a day to nap.

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