Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The littlest birds sing the prettiest songs...

The Be Good Tanyas

What do you get when you mix a rooster with a game hen?
A little bird, of course.

It's no joke (though I have had to convince a few people otherwise, including my mom). It is uplifting though, and that's what we're dealing with these days. Fourteen weeks in to the "creative process" and I am gaining momentum in my belly and excitement in my soul. It's not so much the anticipation or wanting to rush to the finish line, it's more about wondering how our life will grow, how we will change, and who this little person will be. It's so exciting to imagine the possibilities.

Now that I'm through the wilderness of the first trimester, I have given my superstitious self a seat at the back of the bus. Now I've shifted focus to picking through the bits and pieces of life and art that I've collected in my heart over the years. These are the lovelies I want to share with my kid. I imagine all the great things we will come to discover over the course of this adventure.

Years back my friend, RH, introduced me to The Be Good Tanyas and I found myself in love with this song. Silly as it seems, I've always known I would play it for my kid one day and probably sing it to him or her as well (a nod to my lost singing career).

Dear little bird, we can't wait to see you in October!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Perspective

Julie Howard and I went to a yoga class last Wednesday at the JCC and then to Cherry Creek Grill for dinner. I had the highly recommended, always delish Macho Salad and JH had the Salmon (I think - anyway it was some fish). We of course ordered cornbread to tie us over till our meals arrived. It was over said bubbly, green-chilified goodness that JH spilled the beans about her upcoming trip to India. Big News. HUGE. News we have been waiting for, for quite some time. How exciting it all was; and when would she be leaving? One week. No shit. She hopped the plane yesterday and is probably there right now.

In any case, she also reported that she branched out from her first blog endeavour, Dad's Diary, to create Something to Blog About so that she could post photos and talk about this trip. Check it out if you get a sec, she is a great photographer/blogger. Before she left, she created a post about a dinner we had a while back. It was one of those nights where you wake up the next morning and wonder what happened?! D, always my top chef (and I do give him a wide berth in the kitchen), lamented, "I forgot to put out the cubed potatoes with the soup." As if the lack of starch was what we had to be concerned about. Me, of course, I blame the martini's and a great bottle of Captain's Reserve Syrah we bought in Napa over my 30th birthday weekend. It was a funny, strange night and I'm glad she caught it on film and in memory. It always amazes me the things JH remembers. I love her perspective, especially the comparison photos of our two animal loves on their perches.

Happy Trails to you, JH, ...until we meet again :)

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Urban Art Revisited

If you're at all curious and following along at home, the mural IS still developing. This week it started strong and then probably got put on hold for the rain/snow/what-happened-to-spring weather we are having as of late (I watched snow fall in sheets yesterday). I hope the regularly scheduled programming comes back next week. Didn't we all agree it was Spring, why can't we just stick to that?!

In any case, there is progress to visually report though still no insight into the background of the project. Looks like things are starting to be filled in and take shape.

(this is on the very left end of the mural, it's light in the first photo)

Thursday, April 22, 2010

EARTH!

Did I mention I'm an earth sign? It's one of the elements that makes up the four triplicities in Astrology and Capricorns share it with Taurus and Virgo signs. I sound smart right? Not really... I just went to About.com.

I will say, I am grounded and I do like connecting with this planet we're streaming through the galaxy on. In any case, did you notice I changed the header photo? Even though I love my peeling paint and at first found green peeling paint to change the header to, I wanted to put something growing on the site instead. These leaves come from a photo I took at Maroon Bells outside of Aspen last May. I love the lime green in the leaves and the reddish-pink edges. The remaining water droplets and the freshness of it all.

It's my way of giving a shout out to Earth Day - the 40th anniversary. What up Earth! (40 is the new 20...10). Here is to flourishing, organic food, friendlier inhabitants, chemical free shoeless walks, and planting something - even if it's just a positive thought.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

What It Takes

It has taken me a long time to get to this point.

It has taken me being knock-kneed and spongy with crooked bangs and a stuffed animal dangling from an appendage. It has taken wearing white church shoes and folded over socks with fringe that runs around the ankle. It has also taken polyester hand-me-downs, which felt forced and foreign and itchy. It has taken playing and parks and learning how to make friends. It has taken getting my feelings hurt and hurting other people’s feelings. It has taken slumber parties and hours on the phone and many class notes. It has taken being flat-chested and brace-faced and awkward in every good way. It has taken being an athlete. It has taken confidence and mental balance – loosing and rediscovering both over and over again. It has taken admiring others. It has taken aching for a different… everything. It has taken millions of wishes on stars and pennies in fountains and candles on a cake and over train tracks and clasping a turkey bone and late at night in bed looking up at the ceiling. It has taken mixed tapes and much too early curfews. It has taken lightly testing the waters of rebellion but feeling more repressed than anything else. It has taken days of just trying to make it through. It has taken long nights in my late teens and twenties. It has taken a college education and finding the space and people I needed to make those discoveries about who I really am. It has taken falling in love, getting my heart broken, and being devastated by the wake afterwards. It has taken being angry for way too long. It has taken plane flights across oceans and getting lost in countries with strange languages and beautiful art. It has taken seeing life being lived all sorts of ways. It has taken coming to terms with how I was raised and who my parents are as people. It has taken an understanding of what is hereditary and what is not. It has taken years analyzing the past and replaying how things should have/could have happened. It has taken renting my first place and getting my first real job and planting my first garden. It has taken notebooks of journal entries and repeat playing of CDs or favorite songs. It has taken learning to let go or trying to let go or letting go of not letting go. It has taken yoga. It has taken accepting my body. It has taken making friends and loosing friends and loyalty. It has taken opening my heart to love. It has taken the right guy. It has taken leaving good jobs and staying at bad jobs and having dream jobs end too quickly. It has taken realizing how much I embraced fear when I thought I was so free. It has taken the desire to change. It has taken new traditions and finding joy every day. It has taken the time to be a girl, then a teen, and now a woman. It has taken me, alone,...

...and it will take so much more.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Sketch

Yesterday my growling stomach kept me from walking across the street and talking to the artists (and teacher). Rather, I took some photos from an opposite corner as a few kids look awkwardly across the road at me (with my camera and leering eye). I watched the scene for a minute: some kids collected around a table talking and a few doing actual measurements. The teacher came around the building and drew the students' attention to the slack in the tape measure that they were using to draw a straight line. More kids moved to the tape and held it up so they could figure a line or measurement that would serve as part of the foundation they would later build off of.

On my way home for lunch, I daydreamed about all the great things that come from the experience of creating something so large. It creates immortality in a way. This morning as I walked to work, I took in what more they did after I passed yesterday.

Monday, April 12, 2010

New Coat of Paint

For a while now, I've been considering an entry about all of the strange, interesting visual information I see when I walk to work. Things like: the scale of the city from 25th and then again from 20th, graffiti I pass along the way, repeating movie posters glued to decomposing walls of peeling paint, silly dogs that sit in front yards, or the grand architecture (new and old) on Curtis Street (and the wonderful flagstone sidewalks that have the best hollow echo when my shoes tap them), the change of seasons, etc.

I like walking. It seems like such a novel way to half-commute especially when I used to sit in a car for 30 minutes on the highway or ride the light rail in a daze. It slows everything down and adds some different perspective on getting to work. It's a great time to look at things that I wouldn't normally pay attention to, which is why today presented such an awesome opportunity.


I came to the corner of Park Ave West and California and found a bunch of students painting the side of a building a creamy lime green color. They were spread out across the span of the wall that bordered Park Ave West and I just knew they were prepping to paint a mural; so I stopped to take a photo. Then I walked up to two girls and made sure that's what they were doing, which they confirmed they were doing for their school (which I can't remember the name of right now). I was telling them how cool it was and was practically gushing about watching the whole process unfold. They were as excited as they could get about some strange lady in a dress and sneakers honing in on there action. They said the mural was supposed to be completed by the end of May. So I am starting series of photos (every now and again, when I see changes) to show the creation coming to life. I have no idea what the mural is about or what it will look like. I'm guessing it will have a Latino flare because the building houses a Latino organization and the students were Latino as well. I'll keep you posted on the progress.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Create Denver

I went to the Create Denver Expo for the first time Saturday. It's they're fifth annual event but my first annual. I'll go again. The idea behind the expo is to support the development of creative enterprises and individual artists. It's a week long culmination of events but the expo on Saturday had booths on the first floor of the Wellington E. Web Municipal Building and workshops on the fourth floor. It provided networking and education opportunities. I spent most of my time in workshops trying to figure out how I can take my freelance business to the next level. Occasionally I ran into a familiar face or met someone new. This took place while music blasted from the first floor; Johnny Cash would come on or Young MC and it reminded me what I like so much about being a graphic designer, it doesn't feel like "old-man stuffy industry" to me.


My favorite workshop was Getting Creative with Social Media presented by Eric Elkins of WideFoc.us. I'm always wondering how I can make my millions (term used loosely). Eric took me one step closer with his explanations on the difference between a FB fan page and a profile page, Google Alerts, and why Twitter might not dissolve into a fond memory (my personal theory b/c I was to lazy to learn how/why to tweet). Interesting what a little casual presentation and some basics can do for the mind. All three presentations I attended that day left me with things to research and ways to evolve.


I did stop to take photos of a public art piece in the building. It includes three dimensional collages showing tools used to build the city, from items such as traffic cones and laptop computers to wheel barrows. Created by Donald Lipski, it spans a limestone wall running all four floors (60') and displays these various items repeating in a circular motion. I like to think they are reused materials since the building itself is an Energy Star Labeled Building (how cool) but I can't find more information about that! I guess the City worked with various artists from around the country to incorporate sculpture, paint, and metal work into the building. What a great spot to bring together the creative, local community. I can't wait till next year to watch this event grow.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Bloom

I love the colors of Spring.


There are little hints of growth popping up all over town.


Daisies can be found here and there, the yellow so stark and beautiful against the slowly reviving wreckage of winter. They held strong against the snow, which returned Wednesday only to melt soon enough and green things up even more. It’s as if Winter doesn’t want to leave; a little jealous perhaps? I wouldn’t want to go either... the party is just starting to pop.


Tuesday I spent some time taking photos of the flowers from Easter brunch. I think I was eating a Cadbury Egg a bunny left for me in a basket. God damn they're good. I would have done a photo shoot on it too, but it disappeared rather quickly.


What a treat it is to have so many fresh flowers in our house. It makes me smile everytime I look at them. I glance across the cutting board to the table and see the vibrant glow from their tips or the curve of them opening up - so graceful and delicate. We sip drinks with them in the kitchen and talk about how nice it is to have them around, as if they're fantastic house guests who make us feel more interesting.


Thought I would share them with you and keep the beauty alive.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

April Fool

It’s a strange thing to say but I’m not sad to see March go. Sometimes I get these checkpoints in my head and the flipping of our calendar has been my focus the past week, as if it was some finish line to a horrid race I was running. I don’t know what it is. Nothing internally would shift just because the month changed and I lifted a page, but then again, maybe it would. Maybe it is all about silly mind-milestones that help redeem inspiration or bring back the glow.

Is it fair to play myself like that? Some days it’s solely about what makes you feel good. I'm chalking up today as one of those days. The beginning of a new month - a new beginning; a blank slate.

Intuition led my way this morning. I lolly-gagged in bed while the dog made loud, open-mouthed sighs at the sunrise. I still found my way to the basement so I could get back to my practice, so I could get back to me. No bashing about days missed in last month's weary, but rather just today and the days that are to come. It all made sense when I started my new month journal: literally shifting from portfolio to landscape; a decrease in the margins, and an increase in the space for what I see on the screen. A little perspective. Hit Save.

That’s what’s been missing this past month, the “me” I have come to be (and like). It’s no big revelation; it’s just that I couldn’t pull myself out of my own March Madness. Everything felt forced or annoyed or not like the life I wanted to be living. So maybe a new month is just what the doctor ordered to get back on track. Spring is here with the rain and maybe even one last snow; but it assuredly is bringing the warm weather and growth that only the next two season's can promise. It feels like 5 o'clock on a Friday. I feel comfort in the long nights and, oddly enough, the slight chirps of birds starting at 5 am and only multiplying from there. The dog knows there is plenty of time for a walk, as long as it doesn’t coincide with the incessant pounding of the woodpecker (who ruins everything in the morning...and sometimes half-way through a walk in the afternoon). The back door open to the yard so the house seems a little longer and the flow seems a little freer. The garden box calling to me with the challenge of putting it together this year with more things that grow to eat and less things that grow to smell. Ice cream at night. Flip flops and tank tops, sundresses. Skin soaking up the day. Ice cubes clanking against sweaty glasses as it all melts in the afternoon glow of happy hour with good friends.

The expectations are all there. Who knows why I put this on myself - maybe it’s my form of excitement. Am I expecting so much from the month or so much from myself or is it that I finally feel the shift? (perhaps it's that Mercury is no longer in retrograde...whatever that truly means) Can I let my heart crack open, can I let myself bloom like the seeds we are all trying to plant these days? I am ready for the growth. I was ready back in January, it’s just that winter was still around and I had to let things germinate. Anticipation can be fantastically, extraordinarily torturous.

So April it is. It seems so suiting and light: the promise of things to come and the START line of folly.