A House for Dreaming Big Dreams

collage, acrylic, ink

Greetings, My Lovelies ūüôā

Happy Almost-Friday! ¬†I’ve decided to share with you another new art piece that I’m excited about. ¬†This piece helped fuel my inspiration and basically makes me happy every time I look at it. ¬†It opened doorways that allowed me to re-envision an ongoing art project that I put aside for quite some time. ¬†Yata!

What I love about the technology age is that there has never been a better time to be an artist. ¬†Why? ¬†Because we have access to so many styles and tutorials at our fingertips. ¬†No longer must one simply go to an expensive art school to learn traditionally. ¬†There is certainly nothing wrong with going the traditional route, but in today’s fast-paced, modern world, not everyone has time or money for this. ¬†Even if they do, everyone can benefit from additional education and opportunities for growth.

I learned this collage technique from artist¬†nicoletta zanella¬†in this video. ¬†I encourage you to go online and find some art classes or web videos to watch. ¬†Engage. ¬†Be curious. ¬†Take on a new challenge. ¬†See where it takes you and how you can incorporate it into your own personal style. ¬†And in the end, you may find that you’ve expanded your world and you can be more YOU.

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Drawing Your Way to Your Dreams

As a lifelong insomniac, I decided to make a sketch of me sleeping peacefully in the future ūüôā

What if I told you your ideal future starts with a single drawing?

That’s exactly what Patti Dobrowolski suggests in her TED talk “Draw Your Future.” ¬†She says that if you draw the reality that you want, your brain will find a way to make it happen.

Don’t worry about whether you are good at drawing. ¬†Just make the sketch specific to exactly what you want your future to look like. ¬†Remember to draw yourself happy ūüôā ¬†And then color your drawing in with vibrant colors. ¬†Because the more vivid the picture, the better your brain will respond.

The key is to follow these three steps: see it, believe it, and then act on it.

This technique isn’t just for individuals, like artists and entrepreneurs, either. ¬†Big name companies are using this method to get their employees motivated to find solutions for team projects. ¬†It brings new meaning to the phrase “Two heads are better than one.”

What does your future look like?  Draw it and find out!

Change=Story=Life

Ruby Falls, Chattanooga, TN

It’s amazing how after you pick a word for the year, it keeps showing up in your daily life. ¬†For instance, I started reading a book on the craft of writing, Wired for Story by Lisa Cron,¬†before the holidays. ¬†When I picked it up after the new year, I opened it up to the chapter where I left off. ¬†It’s titled, “Courting Conflict, the Agent of Change.” ¬†And there’s my word staring back at me ūüėČ

But it was just what I needed to read. ¬†It’s a reminder of what makes a story.

“Story is about change, which results only from unavoidable conflict.”

Ironically, in real life, “The brain is wired to stubbornly resist change, even good change.”

It’s a great paradox. ¬†We avoid change to stay comfortable, yet we long for new experiences. ¬†Story is one way for us to experience something without actually having to live it. ¬†It’s also a way for us to prepare ourselves for a given situation, in case at some future point we find ourselves in that same situation.

So as a writer, don’t be afraid of putting your characters into the most dire straits. ¬†The greater the risk, the greater the reward, and it creates the ultimate suspense!

But what about in life? ¬†Sure, we want to avoid conflict, but at the same time, we don’t want life to pass us by, never doing the things we dream of doing, just because we’re afraid of change.

“All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy, for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter into another.” ¬†–Anatole France

I think what change calls for is a big dose of bravery. ¬†And where can we find that? ¬†Look no further than in stories–the stories of others who have been through similar circumstances as well as the stories found in books.

I just finished reading a book by one of my new favorite authors, Cartwheeling in Thunderstorms by Katherine Rundell.  A white girl from Africa loses her father and is sent to an English boarding school where she encounters mean girls and culture shock.  Talk about change AND conflict!

Whether you find yourself in this particular situation or not, there’s a lot of wisdom to be learned by following the girl’s story as she runs away from her troubles. ¬†Here are some of my favorite quotes.

“It is real life that takes the real courage, little wildcat… ¬†Although life is very beautiful, it is also very difficult.”

“Hiding and panic go together. ¬†There is nothing in this world that is worse than panic.”

“I do know how difficult school can be, my love. ¬†I hated it myself. ¬†If you go back, it won’t be like cartwheeling in the sunshine. ¬†It would be more like cartwheeling into the wind.”

“But it would be the best possible training. ¬†It would make your arms strong… ¬†And your heart. ¬†You could build a cartwheeling, wildcat heart.”

So go after what you want, even if it means change. ¬†Because in the end, you’ll find you’ve changed, too. ¬†You’ll be stronger for it, and your dreams will become reality. ¬†And boy will you have a good story to tell!