Internet elves and high tech sprites are having their way with me tonight. Teasing. Tantalizing. Coming oh so close to a connection and then poof, just like that…or is it pffft?…they disappear.

Taking the internet with them.

Damn damn damn little cyber fairies!

I’m dashing this off while they’re out and about. Drinking a beer somewhere, no doubt. Laughing at my frustration. Letting me think I’m online. Until I go to leave the page and find myself adrift. Untethered to any strands of the web.

They’re flitting around the network, like a flashlight induced Tinkerbell bouncing off the ceiling. The way she did in my house when I was growing up.

And so I’m going to pack it in for the night. Bid you adieu and leave you with a little clip from Miss TBell herself. Although I have to confess I haven’t been able to watch this all the way through. Connection. So if it turns out to be something other than Disney, oh man…I’m sorry.

Or maybe not!

Say Ahhhhhhh

I was at work the other day, eating lunch in the staff room with a couple of co-workers. One of them, Laura, was telling us about a breakthrough riding lesson she’d had the day before. Laura’s no novice when it comes to horses, she’s an accomplished rider as well as a trainer.

Whoa, wait up. Time out. This is an ART blog.  What does a riding lesson have to do with painting?

EVERYTHING. Because as Laura was telling her story, talking about the AHA! moment that took her from one level of horsemanship to the next, I sat there with a great big lightbulb going off in my head. 300 watts of high intensity Arty Life brilliance!

KA-BOIiiiiiiiiiNG!!! (that’s supposed to sound like a cartoon spring)

So here’s what I remember about Laura’s lesson. She’s in an arena with a handful of other riders. At one end of the arena were horses being worked on the ground.  Distraction. None of the horses being ridden wore bridles. No reins for the riders. Just a hank of mane to hang on to. Well hey, riding without a bridle is impressive but on a scale of 1-10 it’s not like it’s a 12 or anything. You ride with your body. Seat, legs, weight, balance. Reins are like a telephone line, another means of communicating with your horse. Communicating, not controlling. Because when it comes right down to it, the ponies got you beat hands down when it comes to size and strength.

The thing that took this lesson out the the ordinary was the riders weren’t giving direction to their horses. They were just along for the ride, so to speak, letting the horses move about however they pleased amid all the other distractions in the arena. The object being to ride through whatever craziness that might come up.

Which of course it did. Because horses are curious. And reactive. As in holy crap!!! I only came over here to say hello and now she’s going to kick me and so I spinnnnnn around until my brain flies out my ears and then I must runnnnnnnn for my life! And runnnnnnn some more! And keep runnnnnnning because I’m bat-shit crazy and I CAN!!!

When you’re on a horse that does the bat-shit crazy thing, your first inclination is to tighten up and fight against it. Try to control it with the size and strength you don’t have. The thought of broken bones is right there, front and center. Which just makes you tighter. And the situation more dangerous, deteriorating until it becomes one of those oh shit! situations.

But when Laura’s horse went into crazy-ass mode she remembered the object of the lesson and ahhhhhhhh...relaxed right into the fear. Consciously softened her body and rode it out. Not trying to control or direct anything, Just communicating to her horse with her body, a language he could understand, that there was nothing to be afraid of.

And. It. Worked.

AHA! Lightbulb moment here!!!

See where I’m going with this?

It’s just like riding the Wild Crazy ART PONY!

Wild Crazy ART PONY really, really wants you to relax. Because creativity can be a scary-ass thing.  It can take you places you don’t want to go. Like scribbles. Or doodles. Or throwing paint, using those colors. Or making something NOT PERFECT.

Just perfectly INSPIRED. And perfectly AUTHENTIC.

But the natural inclination when faced with unbridled creativity is…to tighten up! To put on the brakes and say whooooa…look at that line, it’s the wrong color/shape/size. I need to paint over it, erase it, tear it up, start again. In other words…WORK IT TO DEATH.

Because we are afraid…it’s not good enough. It won’t sell. People will say unkind things.

And who am I to trust my inspiration?

Ohhhhhhhh…this is where I was going to say (in a kind, motherly fashion) You are an artist. Or writer. Dancer, teacher, whatever… I was going to be loving and gently remind you who you are.

But I’m not going to do that.

You see that wild art pony over there? Well, climb aboard. Go for a ride. And when things get crazy and you feel out of control and you want to tighten up and rein in that fabulous, spectacular creativityahhhhhhh…remember the language of the wild pony. Relax. Lean into it instead. Let it take you where it needs to go.

And then you can tell SHOW me who you REALLY are.

Before you go, I want to share a short video with you that is one of the most inspiring, joyful, AWESOME displays of trust and communication between woman and horse that I’ve ever seen. I’ve had it on my desktop for the longest time, watching it at least once a day because it makes me feel THAT good.

So go ahead and watch it. Think of the Wild ART PONY. And be inspired.







Once Again…RAAW!

It’s Wednesday my sweetums…and you KNOW what that means…ta-da….RANDOM ACTS OF ART!  Whoo-hoo, that’s right. Time to spread some luvvvv one arty token at a time.

RANDOM ACTS OF ART…make a little arty something. Hide it in public where someone can eventually find it. Photograph the hidey spot and share it with the rest of us online.

In my case, that means little bitty painted heart rocks. Easy to make. Easy to hide. And weatherproof.

This week I decided to plant some love at the local hospital. I mean, who doesn’t need cheering up when they’re sick, right?  And it just so happens I had an excuse to be there. Friend Amee’s Granny took up temporary residence with a broken leg. And I am a sucker for little old ladies. I took care of Mama for seven years and one thing I know for sure is they love company. Doesn’t matter if they know you or not. Someone popping in to say hi and hold a hand for a few minutes is a day-maker for sure.

So I drove to the hospital after work. I planted the first rock on a concrete thing just off the walkway between the parking lot and the main building. Plain site hide if someone is looking at the ground.

This is the entrance to the main building. The blue benches on the left are a bus stop.

Well, someone waiting for the bus after visiting their loved one could use a little cheering up, don’t you think?

As I walked through the lobby I left one on the newspaper rack. Maybe it would balance out the ugly stuff in the paper.

I found Granny’s room. Walked in an introduced myself. Then I reached in my pocket and gave her a rock.

Here it is on the bedside table. Seeing her there reminded me so much of Mama. Oh man, I love little old ladies. We chatted for a couple of minutes but I didn’t want to wear her out. I told her I’d be back and next time I’ll bring her a cookie.

On the way out I stopped at the nurse’s station. I explained what I was doing, what Random Acts of Art is all about. YAY! They were enthusiastic. Oh, yes they were! I gave them the last rocks I had in my pocket and they promised to hand them out in the unit. Who knows…maybe I have a couple more RAA converts on board.

Okay, now it’s your turn. Yes indeed! Do you have any Random Acts of Art to share this week? If you posted them on your blog enter the URL of the POST down below where it says You are next. Click Here. Follow the directions and what d’ya know…just like magic your link will appear. Everyone in the universe who reads Arty Life can then read your blog. The blog hop link will remain open until midnight Saturday, California time (PST)

If you want to join us but don’t have a blog, no problem. Send your photos and a brief description to me before Tuesday of next week and I’ll add them to my gallery in my next RAAW post. Please be sure the photos show the hiding spot. Much more interesting that way.

And be sure to spread the word. Get your kids to do it. Your friends. We want to spread  luvvv all around the world. One arty token at a time.

Before I go, don’t forget to check out my FaceBook page. There’s always something new there, usually art. And if you like what you see, please do me a HUGE favor and click the ‘like’ button at the top of the page. I’ve got enough ‘likes’ now for a toaster but I’m saving  up for a blender. Or maybe a puppy.


Arty Life Weekend

Arty Life Weekend

Oh. My. So many adventures in Arty Life land the last couple of days. Brace yourself because this post is going to be skipping from one thing to the next, each topic guaranteed to make you more dizzy than the next.

First…and only because it happened minutes ago and I’m still as jumpy as a tweaker from the adrenalin rush…my brush with wildlife. There was a bear rat in the hay shed. Big sucker. But I was BRAVE. Oh, indeed I was, even with flip flops on my feet. No girly screaming like I did with the mouse. No. This time I was brave enough to stomp and shout with a very big voice like a very scary person. And bang a couple metal trash lids together like a one woman marching band. And Mr. Rat was so impressed he fell off one shelf and jumped down from another. The last I saw was his bare naked tail as it disappeared behind the hay.

Begone with you Templeton!

Now that I’ve impressed you with my wildlife management skills…you ARE impressed, aren’t you…now we can move on to Precious Man Dog (AKA Bean, AKA Benny) If you read Friday’s post, you’ll recall PMD was sorely in need of a haircut. Being a poodle mix the hair just grows. And grows. I let it grow over the winter to keep him warm. Dreadlocks happen and matts and clumps of thick, dense felt take over. Then in the spring I take to him with scissors and we start the cycle all over again.

So this was PMD last week.

This is him today, half the size he used to be. But so darn cute I can’t stand it.

Sophie is in the middle of her spring trim. I have to wait until she’s dead asleep before I can get certain spots. Like her chest. Right now she’s sporting a whole lot of chest hair. Throw a couple gold chains around her neck and she’d be a ringer for Burt Reynolds.

Okay, now it’s time to move on from critters, both wild and domestic, and get to art. Got a couple works in progress to show.

This is acrylic, 2’x2′. Don’t have a clue where it’s going but will know when it gets there. Layers and scribbles. Layers and scribbles.

This one is also acrylic, 36″x48″. Still very much a work in progress. Oh crap…as I’m writing this I’m wondering if I put the lid back on the jar of Titan Buff…well, let’s hope I did because it’s dark and I’m not heading back down to Studio Grande.

Speaking of Studio Grande, Mr. Spouse got some sheet rock up in the new! improved! Studio-Grande-to-be.

He was hoping to have it all rocked this weekend but it was slow going. Hard work indeed. But this is how Mr. Spouse relaxes from his desk job, he builds stuff. And I’m not complaining. By the way, this photo was taken after 6PM. Still good natural light, at least at this time of year. Even more when the tarps come off the skylights.

A gentle reminder that Wednesday is Random Acts of Art. I hope some of you will join me in sharing where you hide your treasures. You can send me photos before Tuesday (like, today) and I’ll post them on the blog. Or you can post the link to your own blog anytime between Wednesday and Saturday.

I’m posting art every day on my FaceBook page. Pop on over and check it out. And while you’re there, do me a GREAT BIG HUMONGOUS favor and click the ‘like’ button (for the page) if you haven’t done so already. And if you’ve already liked my page, pat yourself on the back because you are my BFF and I love you…truly love you… almost as much as I love chocolate!

Susie Scissor Hands

Holy crap…went to bed last night all tucked up in my flannel sheets and when I woke up IT WAS SPRING!!! Sun shining. Birds singing. Felt so good I went for a RUN first thing.

I can’t tell you how long it’s been since I’ve gone for a run. And I didn’t go very far before I realized I was suckin’ pollen into my lungs like a cowboy and his Marlboros. So I cut it short but not before getting enough endorphins to be insufferably perky for most of the day.

In fact it felt so good I decided to wear lime green. LIME GREEN. Which does nothing to hide the muffin top. And I DID NOT CARE. Because I felt so gooooooood.

Spring is lasting until the weekend when it suddenly becomes SUMMER. Supposed to be in the 80s. I don’t think it hit 80 last year until July. Late July. So no studio time tonight. No art until Precious Man Dog gets a haircut.

If only I knew where the scissors were.

Somewhere under all that hair is a dog. And he’s hot. But he knows when I’m thinking about cutting that mop. And he does everything to get out of it.

See what I mean? First the glare….

Then the dead ‘gator roll over.

Finally…resignation. The last photo while wearing his winter coat.

Come back Monday to see what a maniac I am with scissors.