Friday, November 25, 2005

Inspiration for Getting to Our Dreams

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Cold, stormy Atlantic in November with Edward, Prospero, and now Bruzzi.

Walking the dogs has been a wet, cold, dreary activity these last few days. Coming inside to the warmth of the wood stove, I find I'm drawn to collecting quotes that made me want to say YES to things.

"You must not for one instant give up the effort to build new lives for yourselves. Creativity means to push open the heavy, groaning doorway to life. This is not an easy struggle. Indeed, it may be the most difficult task in the world, for opening the door to your own life is, in the end, more difficult than opening the doors to the mysteries of the universe." Daisaku Ikeda, Buddhist thinker, author and educator

Yes, open the door to our own lives.

"The creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect but by the play instinct acting from inner necessity. The creative mind plays with the objects it loves." Carl Jung

Yes, let the creative mind play!

"Courage does not mean lack of fear, for only the foolish are fearless; it means doing things in spite of your fear. Confront those fears, take risks for what you believe, for it is only then you will find what you are capable of; you will discover that if your intentions are good, the worst your opponents can do to you is really not that bad. Go out and make a difference in this world." Kofi Annan, Secretary General, United Nations

Yes, have courage!

And then I found these two quotes which made me sit right up straight.

"The only people that we cannot reach, are those people we refuse to touch." Hasan Davis

"Art is not a part of life, it is not an addition to life, it is the essence of those pieces of us that make us fulfilled. That give us hope. That give us dreams and provide the world a view very different than what it would have been without us." Hasan Davis; artist, attorney, and activist.

Who is Hasan Davis, and how can an attorney know so much about art and dreams? So I look for Hasan Davis and I find he knows everything about dreams, art and inspiration.

Diagnosed Learning Disabled/Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder at an early age, arrested at 11 and expelled from alternative school at 18, Hasan earned his G.E.D. from the state of Georgia Department of Education.

From there he went on to Berea College.  After being expelled from Berea twice, Hasan returned to receive his B.A in Oral Communications.  The year he graduated Hasan was elected President of the student body, homecoming king, and was the recipient of the Navy V-12 Award for his active role in all areas of student campus life. While at Berea Hasan  made  a name for himself in the theater department and on the forensics team.  After Berea Hasan decided that with his learning difficulties and history of educational challenges he should go to Law School.  After three and a half years Hasan received his Juris Doctor from the University of Kentucky.

Recently, Hasan was appointed to the Federal Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee, in 2004 he was elected Vice-Chairman of the JJAC.  Hasan has served as the  Chairman of  the Kentucky Juvenile Justice Advisory Board since 1999, and is Past Vice-President and a founding board member of the Boys and Girls Club of Madison County.  In 2001 Hasan was selected as a Rockefeller Foundation Next Generation Leadership(NGL) Fellow. In 2002 He was hired as Consulting Co-Manager of the Next Generation Leadership Program.

Artistically, Hasan has been recognized as an educator and performer.  he uses his work to create an experiential environment for new learning and appreciation to take place.

(This material is from

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"Broadly, I guess I talk about self-actualization, about getting from where you are to where you want to be." Hasan Davis

So we can open doors to get to out dreams. In fact we should open those doors and live as creatively, artistically, and splendidly as we possibly can.

Thank you Hasan!

Thursday, November 24, 2005


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Matthew Bernier and Judith O'Hare have a new book just about ready to hit the bookstores. As of November 22 one last galley was returned for correction.  The book to be ready very soon!

Can't wait.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

e-news and links

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Some wonderful links:

The National Gallery of Art of Washington, DC, has an interactive kids section with collage machines and all kinds of amazing fun.

Keri Smith gave a talk to design student at UCDavis on how the artist's journal can influence their lives. She also has a pdf file full of journal prompts which you can download for free when you click here.

If you or the folks you work with are using photo shop and need some amazing textures, this is the place for you:

And for Art Therapists in the New York area here's a symposium full of good things:
Friday & Saturday
December 2-3, 2005
Sponsored by:
the New York University
Graduate Art Therapy Program and
the Department of Art and Art Professions
NEW YORK, NY 10003-6680
Symposium: Art as Therapy with Children, Friday & Saturday, December 2-3, 2005
This symposium is held in honor of Edith Kramer, a practicing artist
and pioneer in the field of art therapy, whose extensive work with
children and adolescents has educated and inspired art therapists
throughout the world. In 1973, she came to New York University
and established the Masters Program in Art Therapy. Author of Art
Therapy in a Children's Community, Art as Therapy with Children, and
Childhood and Art Therapy, and numerous articles, Edith also received
her honorary doctorate from Norwich University. The American Art
Therapy Association awarded Edith Kramer with the designation of
"Honorary Life Member" as a mark of its highest esteem. Currently,
Edith is an adjunct professor at NYU, and continues to create and
exhibit her own artwork.
As the profession continues to evolve and grow, art therapists are faced
with changes in licensure in addition to other new challenges.
This symposium is an opportunity to reflect on art therapy's
beginnings, while also examining the current role of art therapy in
schools, hospitals, and communities, and its impact on children's
social, emotional, physical, and creative growth. The program will
begin with a tribute to Edith Kramer, followed by a full day event that
includes keynote speaker, Laurie Wilson, and a panel discussion
with Gladys Agell, David Henley, and Judith Rubin.
» Practicing Art Therapy in NYC's Public Schools:
Marygrace Berberian, ATR-BC, LMSW
»When life and death intersect: art, therapy, children, trauma
and bereavement: Robin F. Goodman, Ph.D., A.T.R.-BC
» Art Therapy in a Residential Treatment Facility:
Christina A. Grosso, A.T.R., B.C.E.T.S.
» Embodying the Aggressor; Art Therapy with Children Exposed
to Violence: Diana Milia, ATR-BC
» Adapting Art Therapy for Children with Physical Disabilities
and Chronic Medical Conditions: Pamela R. Ullmann, ATR-BC
» "hate Katrina": Critical Incident Art Therapy with Evacuee
Children, 5-days post-Katrina: Stephanie Wise,ATR-BC, B.C.E.T.S.

$20 Students (lunch not included)*
$40 Professionals (lunch not included)
$10 Film Night: Students/Professionals (may be paid in advance or register at the door)
* All proceeds from the conference go to the Edith Kramer Scholarship Fund

Please contact the Office of Special Programs Tel: (212) 992-9380

Registration Deadline is
November 22, 2005.

(I know, it's the 23rd but I just got this today.)

Saturday, November 19, 2005

How does your garden grow?

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So my art garden would be a place to play creatively, a place to be inspired and fully animated by color and laughter.

My art garden would have places to rest in the shade, wish granting fairies who's whispering wings could be heard on the breezes, treasure chests full of amazing ideas and art seed packets, castles to explore, and bottomless wellsprings to quench every longing.

My art garden would be a welcoming place for all heroines and heroes who had traveled far, with pure hearts and nobel intent, on their life's journey.

My art garden would have a wise old woman who would smile a generous smile and hold a twinkle in her eye as she spoke the kindest words imaginable.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Virtual Art Garden

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Wouldn't it be great to have a virtual art garden where you could play at any time of day or night, where the weather is always perfect for art making, and friends are always close at hand to laugh with you?

What would you put in your garden?

A castle?

A magical wellspring of inspiration?

Caves full of pirate's treasure?

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Thoughts About Happiness and Stress

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Edith Kramer as a child, with her Grandmother.

As part of my campaign to bring more creativity, joy, and subversive happiness into my life, I've been going through my slide collection and creating scans. Once scanned I can use photoshop and have the most amazing fun! So this is formerly a slide of Edith and her grandmother. She assured me it was very posed. But I do love it. There's something very special about the relationship between a grandmother and granddaughter. I'm all for it!

Then I got some downloadable images from Art-E-Zine for supporting the website. More fun. More play. More subversive happiness:
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This tricycle e-wisdom came yesterday morning, with a most interesting topic of happiness and stress:

"As soon as we become attached to any idea--happiness, success or whatever--there is already some stress. Clinging is itself a stressful state, and everything that derives from it is also stressful. For example, try to clench your hand to make a fist. As soon as you start to clench your hand, you have to use energy to keep your fingers clenched tightly. When you let go of the clenching, your hand is free again. So it is with the mind. When it is in such a state of clenching, it can never be free. It can never experience peace or happiness, even if one has all the wealth, fame and power in the world." --Thynn Thynn, Living Meditation, Living Insight

So instead of clinging to an idea, why not create the things that make you smile. Create a visually pleasing still life for the table where you take your meals.
Then while you have your next meal, pay attention to the still life. Notice its various aspects; colors, textures, line. Notice the overall feeling. Know that this is a gift you created for yourself, for your own enjoyment.

No clinging, no stress. Just a pleasant meal made a little more pleasant by you for you.

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Jug and flowers from Edith Kramer's home in Austria.

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I create this collage of Tintern Abbey and Flowers. It makes me smile.

Monday, November 07, 2005

E-news and links

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If you are looking for inspiring posters for schools and libraries, or if you would just like to look at some inspiring posters, The Foundation for a Better Life, is offering a set of five posters to schools and libraries. These posters are from their values-based billboard campaign. You can see all of FBL's billboards here. To request posters, please e-mail the Foundation at Include your name, school name, street address (no PO box) and phone number (for shipping purposes only) along with the reason for your request. Each is considered separately and only one set of posters can be sent to each school. Incomplete requests will be not be answered and no posters will be sent without all necessary information.

For resources on Creativity and innovation check out the Creativity Web.

For an inspiring film clip of what looks like should be an inspiring film of a journey in a yellow vw across America go here.

Art heals has links of examples of how artists and arts organizations can and are engaged in helping bring relief to those affected by Huricane Katrina (and now Rita and Wilma too).

Who has made a difference in your life?

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Two Grandmothers Postcard altered by Lani

I just filled out the most amazingly heart warming survey. Answering these questions about someone who has made a difference in my life and why... well it just felt like a gift! I can't think of a better way to spend a few minutes. Try it and you will see what I mean.

Every once in a while we meet someone who makes a huge difference in our lives. When we're affected by these people, we know they've made our lives, and the world, a better place.

Do you know someone like that? Tell the world about a person who made a difference in your life by going to:

Fill out the short survey and then see how you feel!
Let me know!

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Adventure in Ontario

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We had a wonderful time in Ontario, lots of hard wood autumn leaves (something we miss in our life by the sea), lots of freinds and family. Many gifts, many surprises and a lot of joy. Photos can be found here.

By Norman MacCaig

I give you an emptiness,

I give you a plenitude,

unwrap them carefully.

-one's as fragile as the other-

and when you thank me

I'll pretend not to notice the doubt in your voice

when you say they're just what you wanted.

Put them on the table by your bed.

When you wake in the morning

they'll have gone through the door of sleep

into your head. Wherever you go

they'll go with you and

wherever you are you'll wonder,

smiling about the fullness

you can't add to and the emptiness

that you can fill.

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Thank you, Maureen, for being there and for the wonderful poetry and art work in every corner of your house!

Homage to Brian Andreas & the Story People

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Collaged old postcard by Lani
The Tricylist and Passenger are myself and my younger sister, Lucia.

Every day I get a little email from the Story People in Iowa.
Here's today's story:

" Life Cycle
This is a special bike that's not very good at listening to excuses, so it takes you exactly where you really want to go & if you kick & scream it makes you pedal harder & go up steeper hills until you're too out of breath to complain & after awhile, if you're lucky, you start to see that it doesn't really matter if you laugh or cry, because it just wants to ride like the wind"

Isn't that perfect?
Don't you love Brian Andreas?