23 October 2011

Creative Education

I was going to wait until tomorrow to post this, but the excitement was too much.

Have you seen this? Sir Ken Robinson, PhD, is one of the world's leading proponents of creativity and imagination in schools. I came across another TED Talk he gave (here) some time ago, and was hugely inspired by his dreams for the future.

I realized just today that the lethargy and frustration I've been experiencing in school since the very beginning of high school and up to this very moment is due to my disinterest in what is being taught. Yes, there are classes here and there that completely captivate my attention, but they are few and far between. The last one I was exceptionally interested in was my playwriting class in the fall of last year. I so wish I could take more creative classes, but my status as a transfer student limits the flexibility in my schedule to graduation.

I have always been interested in art and working with children. As the years pass, I find that my resolution to do what I can to change a failing education system and follow my heart toward an artistic career are growing stronger; excitingly, my discovery of art journaling, passion for creativity, and my growing knowledge of and indignation at the consequences of inequality in education opportunities are not incompatible. My passion for these, however, is causing me to be ever eager to leave university and do something instead of simply reading about it.

Education is so important, my lovelies; so too is creativity. I'd love to hear your thoughts on the successes and failures of education in your own lives and how creativity has affected you - whether you were told you were never going to be an artist, you found yourself through art, or (is it possible?) you never gave it a second thought.

"Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid." /Albert Einstein

More resources:

22 October 2011

Hodge Podge

I have been working on this self portrait for a little over a week. I can't decide if it really looks like me or not, and keep opening my art journal to add just a highlight or a shadow and end up changing a large part of it. The eyes are the most difficult to capture, I find; they really do seem to hold the soul of a person, even on paper.

I've been having quite a semester - I realized too late that I have completely overcommitted myself and that my capacity to do all of the things I initially said "yes" to is limited. I am tired and stressed and find that I have no time to do the things I love to do: read, paint, write, take photographs, blog. This is a clear message that I need to have realistic expectations of myself and that learning to say "no" is just as important as, say, eating well. My goodness, though, how hard that is!

Over the past few months I have been thinking about many big concepts and questions, the stuff of Plato and Aristotle. I wonder about what it means to be human, really - what our responsibilities and our gifts are, what it means to be a conscious being, and the relationships between the wealthy and the poor, affluent and struggling countries, and conflict and peace. There is so much suffering in the world, and I realize more and more every day how incredibly blessed I am to have the opportunities I do. You are blessed, too, dearest.


Check out this good stuff:
  • Goddess Leonie's brand new book! I just bought a copy and reading it is like a dear friend whispering beautiful, kind things to me. It's only $10 for the next few weeks!
  • Have you signed up for the Sketchbook Project yet? I won't be participating in it this year due to my schedule, but I think you should take part and have your sketchbook tour the country!

15 October 2011

Photo a Day: The Conclusion

Day 29 / July 29, 2011

Day 30 / July 30, 2011

Day 31 / July 31, 2011

I promised this post more than two months ago: the wrap-up to the photo-a-day project I did during the month of July. This self imposed challenge was wonderful, a perfect formula of ease and a doable length of time. I highly suggest you give it a try!

See week 1, week 2, week 3, and week 4.

Here is what I learned:

  • I am not one to follow through on projects. While my initial enthusiasm is enormous, my focus soon wanes and I move on to new things.
  • That being said, shorter or smaller projects are much more likely to get finished. (And I am so proud of myself when I do finish!)
  • Taking a photo a day made me to really pay attention: what is beautiful? What is unique? What is memorable? It was a welcomed awareness.
  • Time passes very, very quickly. Often it would be twilight before I had remembered to take my photo.
  • I am a very picky photographer. I may take scores of photos, and truly like only one.
  • As the weeks went on, it became more and more challenging to take photos that weren't repetitive: there are only so many unique shots one can take of flowers or the sky!
  • The final collection of photos is one that I am proud of, with the exception of the second day. The blurriness was not something I had realized before it became too dark to replace it.
  • The very last photo (seen above) is my favorite of all, I think. Its simplicity, softness, stillness, and shades of summery green are magical. It is of drops of water from the sprinkler. Which, of all of them, do you like best?

I would certainly consider doing a photo-a-day for a month again, perhaps in a new season. For my next project? I'd love to try taking a photo-an-hour for one day. 

Thanks so much for joining me throughout this journey, my loves. If you begin your own thirty or thirty-one day challenge, please leave a link in the comments!

10 October 2011

The Crazy Ones

Stand out. Try something new. Take a risk. Ask questions. Dream, explore, and create. Be you, press ever onward, and change the world.

08 October 2011

Journal Flip

 Music: All of Me by Billie Holiday

I woke up this morning to warm rays of sunlight streaming through the window. That's my very favorite: when I can start the day slowly, reveling in the quiet of the morning and the beauty of the world, and can fully experience the transition from the world of dreams to the world of life.

It's been the busiest semester yet, and I am so grateful to be enjoying a three day weekend - plenty of time to catch up on sleep, get lots of work done, paint, and even create the little video above. Many of the pages in my journal are in progress, unfinished, but I like the idea of recording the changes that will occur over the next months. Enjoy!

Wishing you sunshine, stillness, and inspiration this weekend!
All my love,

PS. A very happy birthday to my dear mama, too!

02 October 2011

Giveaway Winner!

And the winner of the My Memories digital art software is...

Congratulations, Christa! You'll receive an email soon with all the details.

And thanks so much, too, for all the lovelies who entered. I truly appreciate it! Remember, My Peacetree readers get a $10 discount when buying the My Memories Suite software! Just enter the code STMMMS34177 when completing your purchase. You'll also get a $10 coupon for the online store, which is filled with digital packages for as low as $0.99!

A small note: While there were fourteen comments to the giveaway, one was a reader submitting an email correction; the actual number of entries was thirteen, thus the range of 1-13 listed above.


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