I haven’t posted on this blog in so long, partly due to my other blogs (a LiveJournal, Tumblr, and Posterous) that I just can’t let go quite yet.  Ha.

I definitely haven’t been neglecting my art stuff, though.  Although life’s “day-to-day” has been keeping me busy as well.  I’ve been art journaling like a mad lady with something on her mind, and have also gotten into iPhone photography applications (ShakeItPhoto and CrossProcess, specifically).

There’s one thing I’ve got to do: I’m highly recommending L.K. Ludwig’s new art journaling book, Creative Wildfire — it’s really, really fabulous.  I’ve been aj’ing for the last couple of years, and rarely buy art journaling/mixed media books unless they’re something to crow about, and this one is great.  I actually took four pages of notes while reading the book, cover to cover, the day I bought it because there is so much rich content in it.

I’ve been working on my new domain (shantadevi.com) – uploading content and coding pages.  Work has also been keeping me away from the blogosphere.

Some recent art journaling pages:

Text on third set of pages: (1) “You could have flown away/a singing bird in an open cage/that only flies for freedom” – U2, “Walk On” / (2) I write absence of truth for my wedding day when I sing on mntns. of Egypt with you out loud loud louder still ’til I’m so close we’re one and I can hear your echo, too

*

Peace.

I suppose that this is different, that this is right,
        that this is real…
                I suppose that I am, too —
                        complementary and walking,
                                still mending my
                                past due shoes
                                and eliciting
                                cries over
                        what color to paint
                                them (again),
                                        times-two.
                I walk further out and
                        change my mind mid-
                                sentence, stepping further
                                        and sooner than before
                                        and mimicking a
                                                past like a
                                        circumspect beginning
                                                and my favorite
                                                        few words,
                                                        spelled differently.
                                And like my hand reaches for
                        a “time” to call closer,
                                I resist the pull from within
                                        and remark that my
                                                hands are freer
                                                        than blue winds.
I am let go (dropped the call),
        and set inside for safe keeping.
                I wait alone, awhile, for a new shake —
        for something to move me
                                another step
                                        to make me follow through.
                                I change into a view, a
                                        disguise and shadow
                                        the boxer, the player
                                                in the games.

My heart tries (in feeble attempt) to write itself down —
        to express with mere words, my only sanity — this belief,
                this love, this art, this practice. So, with compliment,
                        I retire to the sea and watch the waves
                                and time slip by…
                                        I feel out my “ancestors” — my
                                                reign, my “roots” — am I
                                                        tied?
                                                                I think not.
I think not of stupid things and meditate on nothing. I write
        emotions and feelings that bubble up and change course
                over a “moment” — across borders, la frontera
                        etc. etc.
        I value my “freedom”/responsibility to choose and act
wisely — with grace and intelligence; carefully. I feel out
        my better steps and pay no mind to false critics who
                think they may judge the value of my work —
                an extension, like an arm, of my being here.
        At present, I am reminded of how I began, as things
                end and “time” is seemingly more concrete,
                        more like ice — susceptible to wear, but
                                fragile, broken, and never there…
                                        nothing to depend on.
        I buy books because they are blank.
I don’t read books because they are empty inside.
        I write and paint and draw “now” because it is natural
                like breathing — a new sense that I am exploring.
        My favorite words begin and end in the same sentence —
they are concise and brief — simple, yet strong.
        My favorite song is slow and melodic.
                My time is not wasted on fools or dream-
                        thinkers.
                        Dreamers are actors who believe in beliefs —
                in what they see, how they feel, and history —
                the way things are.
Dreamers are false idols.
        Anything that can be seen, touched, or tasted —
        sensed, is false — truth cannot be sold, bought,
                held, or forgotten; known or forgiven — or
                        given, like in a book or inherited like a
                                strong nose.
My ancestors gave me false starts, but maybe I was one
        of them, on a a slave ship, out in the fields —
                freezing, thawing, working, dying.
And now what?
        How am I different? What is different?
What has changed?
        My heart still beats boldly, strangely, desperately
                for freedom
                        and my mind still allows for control —
                who am I?
        And why, oh why, am I here — as a reminder that
                I am no longer? Or as a symbol
                        of temporary form — of dying and
                                death?

I visit my past and write toward my future —
        a love letter at last given,
                my fortune taking toll and assessing
                        this condition.
I value my sentiment and challenge this
        rehearsal,
                like a drum, beating —
        a system chanting —
                I change my mind like you or
                        your hats.
I visit trusted angles and sail
        past the meridian —
        selling eagles and visiting
                scriptures, passed.
I visit your bald eagle
        and say that we are 1.
I value my sentence
        and recreate my own dreamland
                in your hand.
I imitate said reasons like myself,
        chanting.
I reach under the
        stairs and select
                a new disc
                        that will change me,
                                myself and this rule.

A few uploads from some of my journals/books – a mix of things:

Spent much of yesterday “curled” up on a bench in Barnes & Noble perusing Keri Smith and mixed media books.  Was much inspired by Smith’s whimsical style — made me relax a bit about my big-kid approach to art and mixed media.

I just love to play and explore.  I’m sparked by curiosity and most of all an interest in art and creation – it wasn’t about being “talented” when I first discovered art as a girl.  I never thought I really was talented, that term never rung true – still doesn’t.  It doesn’t make sense because it’s out of the realm of what creating “is” for me.

I don’t consider myself an artist in the sense of “me” being different or separate – “art,” and nature (the world, universe, etc.) are so much a part of me that we’re not separate.  There’s no distinction between “me” and what “I do.”  Ya dig?

Anyway, much love to the craft-makers this season.  I’m sure you’ve all got your hands full with decorating, creating, mixing-mashing, designing this month and well into the New Year.

I’m also enjoying reading posts at a LiveJournal journaling community that I came across – very welcoming group of folks over there.

<333

I’ve been scanning a lot, lately.  Pages from National Geographic (so many interesting shots – I should make a list of my favorite photographers from those, as a reference sheet for other artists to study) currently, and others from iD magazine, Purple Fashion and Paris Vogue to come later.

I use the images that I scan as reference for color palettes, shape and texture in fabrics, locations for research projects in assignments and personal tinkerings that I take on sometimes.  I’ve always wanted to explore digital collage, as I love mixed media collage already and enjoy Photoshop and digital photography and imagery.  I’m hoping to experiment with using scanned images when I start to delve into that process.  Also, I tend to recycle the magazines after I have scanned in my favorite images – or use the physical paper in future art journaling activities.  Phew.  Very time consuming, but so worth it.

I’m inspired by a lot of the art journaling/crafting books that have been coming out lately.  Still waiting to purchase a couple, including Journal Spilling by Diana Trout (not yet released).  It’s amazing to come across others in the realm of art and mixed media with similar practices, but also new insights.  I peeked inside the preview of the book at amazon.com, and was delighted by the author’s honest words.

School has started up again – this time the last year of my undergraduate education.  It’s been a journey, for sure.  I’m taking a light, but interesting load: (1) Capstone community service project – art, (2) Digital Illustration & Painting and (3) Motion Graphics.  These classes are keeping me fairly busy, but also helping to serve my creative needs, too.

I’d like to get into the habit of taking more pictures, regularly – and now that I’m back at school and have access to a printing lab again  I’ll start printing my favorite shots out and forming a more concise portfolio.

Some recent art journaling scans:

*Edit: Larger sizes!

*Text in page #2 says:

I search for truth now.  For better things like “you” — you
that rings true — this is how we take a step toward
a greater deed — a nice emblem of that which
we also are — this is why I take steps into a very different
kind of how we always are…this is my entrance into a
greater being and part of me — this is how we seek a
different step — this is my passage, now.  This is why we
seek a same step into a just passage — this is my pur-
pose in all things — this is why we have come to pass up
these (soon) opportunities — they is why I have changed
course in a new direction — this is my changed way —
this is a beauty, simply put — this is how — this is a
smaller thing — a change in the current — this is a change
in the tide — this is truly how we seek change — this a
true law and a change of action that makes this worry
now — this is something now — this is a different step to
take light into, now (something that I change now — ) —
this is a breath that excites me, now — this is how we
can take this now.  —❤

*Text in page #4 says:

This, a light freedom —
this challenge
and change —
this, too
I admire, this I
cherish, treasure and
admit to
in Grace
in Divinity

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