Saturday, August 30, 2008

Spiritual Dreams

Above image titled "A Well Read Bible" © Rhonda L. Hall

A well read Bible feels comfortable in the hands, and carries the spirit of those who have studied it faithfully in the past. That having been said, I am going to discuss a strange dream that I experienced last night. I haven't mentioned a specific dream here before, but not knowing what could have possibly inspired this dream I find it interesting. I woke up this morning, and as I rose heading for the bathroom a word was hanging in my mind, from the dream that was interupted by my waking...unibomber. No, that wasn't right, I wasn't a nightmare. It was a nice dream. Ah, yes, it was UniBIBLE. I thought what a strange word that seemed. And as I wondered about it's origin, bits and pieces of my dream came back to me. As they fell into place, I realized that I had been searching for this UniBible. That was the title of the small New Testiment type pocket sized Bible I was picturing in my dream. As I searched I came in contact with many people, they seemed to be modern day prophets, no one that I knew or had heard of, but they spoke much as Jesus, Mother Teresa or perhaps the Dali Lama would have. They were all aware of the object of my search and wonderfully encouraging about my quest. From what I gather of my memory of this dream, the UniBible was a Bible that was meant for the whole world, all religions, races and idealologies would benefit from the study of this basic guide of how to live in peace and happiness. Perhaps even a universal guide. It seemed to include the very basis of the beliefs of all people, and included some teachings of all the great teachers, prophets or religious figures of all the different sects or spiritual groups worldwide. I'm sure I've heard of the idea of a worldwide religion before, but I can't think of anything in the very recent past that would have triggered a dream such as this, especially since it was so specific an item that I was searching for. By the end of the dream, as I awoke, I had the UniBible in my hands and was just beginning to open it's pages...

As human beings we all want to be happy and free from misery… we have learned that the key to happiness is inner peace. The greatest obstacles to inner peace are disturbing emotions such as anger, attachment, fear and suspicion, while love and compassion and a sense of universal responsibility are the sources of peace and happiness.
Dalai Lama quotes (Head of the Dge-lugs-pa order of Tibetan Buddhists, 1989 Nobel Peace Prize, b.1935)

Friday, August 15, 2008

Dream Green

Above artwork titled "Dream Green" © by Rhonda L. Hall

Living Green should become a way of life. Making changes in your daily routine should be a conscious educated choice, which once started should be repeated so as to become habit. Each step taken to improve our world, each tiny contribution you can make in your normal activities can do a great deal towards slowing down, stopping, and then healing the destruction that our careless lifestyle has created. Once you begin to be considerate of our earth, and start bringing awareness into your actions, you will begin to think creatively and find more and more simple ways to save energy, reduce pollution, and conserve natural resources. If every human being sharing this planet would each take responsibility of their own life and the way it effects our home, we could accomplish much. Think Green. Live Green. Dream Green. Who knows, it just may carry over into the rest of our dealings with each other and we may become consciously considerate of all the fellow beings who share this environment, we may develop the awareness to abolish prejudice, stop wars, and learn to live together with respect for all life in their varied forms. Think harmony and peace. Live harmony and peace. Dream harmony and peace. Dream!

“Be the change you wish to see in the world.”


Thursday, August 14, 2008

Live Laugh Love

Above artwork titled "Live Laugh Love" © by Rhonda L. Hall

Live your life by the moment, not regretting what has gone before or worrying about what will be. Try to find something to enjoy in everything you do, or at least learn something from what you don't find inspiring. Try new things, or do things that you haven't done in a long time. Do things that you did when you were a child. Do somethng you've always wanted to do. Live!

Smile at strangers, smile at your enemies, smile at those you love, smile at yourself in the mirror, smile at life and don't worry that someone will see you smiling at the world...laugh when you feel like it. Don't stifle your laughter. Learn to laugh at yourself and with others. Laughter keeps you healthy, and young at heart. Laugh out loud every day. Laugh!

Do the things you love, don't worry about what anyone thinks. Love is everywhere if you look for it. Where there is hate, find a way to use love to counteract it. Don't be afraid to express love. Don't be afraid to accept it, in whatever form it takes. Love is acceptance. Accept those with different beliefs, cultures and lives. Love your gods, your earth and all the beings who share this planet with you. Love your own spirit that is one with all else. Love!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Nature as Inspiration

Above artwork titled "Horizons" © by Rhonda L. Hall

Have you suffered from Artist's Block? Whether a writer, or visual artist, you most likely at some point have felt alienated from your creative muse to some extent... I have found that one of the best ways for me to find inspiration during dry spells, or any day for that matter, is to spend some time with nature. Inspiration is every where you look, even if it is just through your kitchen window as you are washing the dinner dishes. Just be slightly observant and the world can pass before your eyes in a moment. The flight of a bird, or the industry of a spider can spark a whole chain reaction that can lead to a whole series of inventive shards of thought. Or better yet, take a whole day for yourself! Leave pencil and paper, pens and Ink, paints and pallet, and maybe even the camera behind and strike out to really spend time exploring the natural world. Notice little things. Pay attention to the Universe. Commit to memory the feel of the breeze, the sun, the rain, how your fingers feel against a cool smooth rock, a velvety leaf, or dangling in a rippling stream or warm puddle. Listen to the sounds of a woodland or a thunderstorm. Inhale the scent of spring freshness, summer roses, autumn leaves burning or winter snow. You will go back to your studio refreshed, relaxed and full of glimpses of gratitude for life and all of it's miracles...the inspiration will come to your hand through the awe in your heart, the curiosity of your mind and the connectedness and love in your soul.

Lord of the far horizons,
Give us the eyes to see
Over the verge of sundown
The beauty that is to be.
Give us the skill to fashion
The task of thy command,
Eager to follow the pattern
We may not understand.

Masters of ancient wisdom
And the lore lost long ago,
Inspire our foolish reason
With faith to seek and know.
When the skein of truth is tangled
And the lead of sense is blind,
Foster the fire to lighten
Our unillumined mind.

Lord of the lilac ranges
That lift on the flawless blue,
Grant us the heart of rapture
The earlier ages knew--
The spirit glad and ungrudging,
And light as the mountain air,
To walk with the Sons of Morning
Through the glory of Earth the fair.

Carman, Bliss (1861-1929)

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Reasons to Paint :-)

Above artwork titled "Cheap Brushes" © by Rhonda L. Hall

45 reasons to paint.
1. You were more concerned about the colour of your car than the fuel
2. The highlights in your hair are from your palette and not
3. You are having lunch with the girls and the fragrance you wear
is eau d’linseed oil.
4. The only piece of new furniture you have in your home is a $2000
5. You butter your toast with your fingers, just to feel it’s
6. You think about taking a picture to a show.
7. You talk about going to a show where the pictures don’t move.
8. You are over 50 and still have no health insurance.
9. Your family takes out a life insurance plan on you for less than
10. You know what shade of green the lichen on the trees is.
11. You can’t find a nice outfit for your date because everything
has paint smears on.
12. Your date ends up with paint smears on her/him.
13. You’re late for the date because you suddenly knew exactly what
that detail of your latest painting needed and just had to fix it
while it
was fresh in your mind.
14. You chose to buy that new Russian Sable Number Six Round
instead of a Big Mac, a Large Fry, a Milkshake, Desert, and five
gallons of gas.
15. Your favourite home repair store refuses to work with you to
repaint your den, because you rename all of their paint swatches and
you get
upset that they don’t carry the exact nuance of raw umber you had in
16. You purchase a ton of books, and most are blank inside.
17. When viewing a sunset, you think in terms of cadmium yellow
(light hue), salmon and gold, a tinted teal mixed with gold for the
18. Strangers save your ‘regular’ spot at the park, perfect for ob
serving children and pigeons.
19. There are Prussian blue fingerprints on your phone.
20. You stay awake late at night wondering how to render on canvas
the dimly lit shapes and the shadows in your room.
21. When you go out, you are always stopping and gazing at the world
around you.
22. You travel far to sketch a place of scenic beauty.
23. You clean your brushes in your coffee.
24. You carry pencils instead of pens.
25. You have watercolour swatches on cardboard in your pocket.
26. You explain your deplorably bad housekeeping by saying, “it’s a
work-in-progress. ..”
27. You do judge a book by its cover.
28. You watch the latest kids’ digital animation movies and drool

Recieved in email, by Anonymous

"Every artist dips his brush in his own soul, and paints his own nature into his pictures.”
- Henry Ward Beecher quotes

Monday, August 4, 2008

The Magic of Light

Above artwork titled "Magic Moment" © by Rhonda L. Hall

Have you ever thought about how wonderful an effect light can have on everything it touches? Your mood and your health are dependent on the amount of sunlight you recieve, not only does it stave off depression but also helps provide the vitamin D your body requires to be healthy. The way light can add sparkle and magic to nature, or even a man made structure can change the whole mood of a scene. A sunrise or sunset reaches deep into your soul. Starlight and moonlight connect you to the universe. Think of how different an overcast rainy day feels, compared to a sunny day filled with blue skys and fluffy white clouds. Even indirect or unnatural light can give expression in a photo, adding depth and a certain moodiness to your work. Artist's strive to reflect this phenomonom in their images, often calling it 'Painting with light'...Even your imagination and dreams provide glimpses of the light conditions that give emotion and a sense of reality to your mind's musings. Light or the absence of it, can influence how you perceive the temperature of your surroundings or how you react to the warmth or coolness of a certain view. Studying the light that surrounds you daily can bring a creative and awe-inspiring magic to your life, helping you to find great joy in everyday things.

...And you will find your sun
And know the magic meaning of its light...
- Ed Freeman

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Creative Recycling of Paper

Above artwork titled "Paper Beads" © by Rhonda L. Hall

Many people remark, when they see my paper beads, that they remember their Grandmothers making or wearing these beautiful items. The craft is said to have begun in England in Victorian times. Women then, often gathered together to roll scraps of wallpaper onto knitting needles, crafting beads. Which were then strung onto lengths of yarn to make beaded curtains that they used as room dividers. Using bits of wrapping paper, wallpaper, kid's discarded artworks, or even can labels is a good way to recycle paper and make inexpensive though beautiful beads. Using your imagination you can create many other lovely projects with these beads, from jewelry, wall art, baskets, mobiles, collages or even decorate greeting cards. Making a simple bracelet or necklace would be a good project for a Girl Scout Troop, or just a rainy day project for kids. The method can become a real art style for adult jewelry makers or artisans. There are many webpages online explaining different ideas or tips, and with a little practice you can discover which methods work best for you. Time spent making paper beads can be both meditative and productive.

“Life is a train of moods like a string of beads; and as we pass through them they prove to be many colored lenses, which paint the world their own hue, and each shows us only what lies in its own focus.”
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Friday, August 1, 2008

Fly your Banners!

Above artwork titled "Centerway Walk Bridge" © by Rhonda L. Hall

Many towns fly colorful banners or flags on the light poles lining their main streets, and I've heard lately of contests being held for design entries of this type. This seems like a creative activity that could easily be tied in with a festival or celebration. Be used as a means to raise money for a worthy cause, or even to show support for an important issue. I can imagine people of all ages creating banners or flags for cities, schools, parks, stadiums, boardwalks, hospitals or poliical parties. A certain theme or method could be suggested, and the works of art would be publicly displayed for a period of time. It seems like a great way to get people involved in their communities and have pride in their creative talents.

Ay, here her tattered ensign down! Long has it waved on high, And many an eye has danced to see That banner in the sky.
Author: Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

Any comments are more than welcome, please feel free to express any thoughts by clicking on the small purple comments link below ;)

Any comments are more than welcome, please feel free to express any thoughts by clicking on the small purple comments link below ;)

As Through a Child's Eyes - Conscious Creativity

Above artwork titled "A Gentle Touch" © by Rhonda L. Hall

Isn't the spiritual idea of living for the moment, really a way of seeing life through a child's eyes? Doesn't a child give his attention fully to one thing and then move on in the next minute to investigate another new thought or idea? Children become enthralled with whatever activity takes their fancy at any given moment, and may quickly turn their attention to some other object that immediately captures their total being. Really spending time with a child is a wonderful way to refresh your outlook on life and find that long lost creativity that you once enjoyed yourself. Take the time, every once in a while, to step down from your adult leadership role, and let them take you on a journey...investigate the world as they do! Look closely at things that have become mundane to you over the years and really see them as if for the first time. You will begin to feel the awe that small everyday things can inspire, and start to develope a gratitude for life and all that it has given you. Give your full conciousness to your time here and you will find in yourself the creative joy of a child.

"Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist after growing up."

- Pablo Picasso

Any comments are more than welcome, please feel free to express any thoughts by clicking on the small purple comments link below ;)