Merry Christmas everyone! I'll be back to blogging more consistently! It's a promise I made to myself firmly!
Monday, December 27, 2010
Merry Christmas everyone! I'll be back to blogging more consistently! It's a promise I made to myself firmly!
Friday, October 15, 2010
The book "Eat, Pray, Love" touched me profoundly when I read it a few years ago. And yesterday I watched the movie alone, and it was a very, very spiritual experience.
I have not been blogging so much about my creative life for almost 2 weeks now and I miss this space. This space is my meditation hall, I come here to perform my sacred ritual of writing meditation. Work has been the asnwer to my reason of missing in action. I have found a new job, a teaching job, teaching students the English Language. It's a part time thing, I meant it that way, so I could use the rest of the time to paint. But the initial stage of having new changes in one's life usually means that things can't work out as plan.
This qupte by Elizabeth Gilbert meant alot to me"
"There is so much about my fate that I cannot control, but other things do fall under the jurisdiction. I can decide how I spend my time, whom I interact with, whom I share my body and life and money and energy with. I can select what I can read and eat and study. I can choose how I'm going to regard unfortunate circumstances in my life-whether I will see them as curses or opportunities. I can choose my words and the tone of voice in which I speak to others. And most of all, I can choose my thoughts."
I was feeling a tad little down that I've sacrificed painting in the name of a more steady "work". I have allowed myself to wallow in sadness thinking I am giving up my creative pursuit (permanently) to earn a more steady income to pay my rent. Then I remembered the words of Buddha, the wisest teacher ever to grace this earth, He said we can choose our thoughts, and we, hold the final key to our own door or happiness. And He eaid that nothing is permanent, which Elizabeth Gilbert also mentioned in her book, "eventually, everything goes away".
So she also says it beautifully, "I can choose my thoughts." And that is my challenge and my sentiment. I am choosing to see that this transition to more independence is an opportunity to strengthen my spirit. I choose to see that this teaching job is not permanent, that the busy-ness is not permanent too. I choose to learn from this job, to take responsibility for my time. I look at my students, and see how this job is also a blessing. Compared to the serenity and aloneness of painting, my teaching helps balance me with reaching out to people. I am able to learn from my students, these young people from Sudan, Kazakhstan, Saudi Arabia, and thank the Universe I am able to impart knowledge, to quench the thirst of curiosity and to ignite the passion for learning.
So I am keeping faith, I will and shall and can paint again, and accept that it is not now. But soon, very very soon.
Saturday, September 25, 2010
Her post on 13th September grounds me to contemplate on my life lately. In her very words, "Courage is required...."
"when you know you need to be honest
when you have to make a choice between an old destructive way of thinking and a new healthier one
when you have to go to the dentist and you know she’ll know you haven’t flossed in forever
when you realize it’s time to let go of an old grievance that’s been helping you feel cozy and safe
when you know you need to drink, eat, obsess, etc. less
when you’re about to break the rules
when you need to try anything new
when you are about to assume more responsibility
when you’re trying on bathing suits or looking in full length mirrors of any kind
when you’re deciding to actually try to look pretty
when you’re owning up to having hurt someone you love
when you’re writing a new script for your future
when you’re deciding to trust someone who hurt you in the past
when you’re deciding to let the love all the way in
whenever you’re taking a chance
whenever you’re choosing to forgive
whenever you’re deciding to trust yourself
whenever you head out on a brand new path
whenever you need to say goodbye
or whenever life asks you to start all over again"
Everything resonates. I have been living from two places recently, swaying from fear to courage, courage to fear. I am making the conscious choice to be brave, and I am truly appreciating that I can be brave, that I am brave, and enjoying the rewards from making decisions based on honoring my own truth.
I am courageous, because
I have been telling my loved ones to drop the need to hold on to the past, to embrace the present, to let go of the drama, and instead live in the now.
I told someone very precious to me that he has the power to re-create his life, but first he must stop telling himself things that till so far has create only a painful reality for him. Telling himself that he is alienated from everyone else around him is very far from the truth. I reminded him that he is very loved.
I said goodbye to someone that was very dear to me, because holding on was not serving both of us. I have truly learned the meaning that when you love someone you're not afraid to let that person go. Because on a deep soulful level you know that unconditional love binds people together in a non-attached way. Nobody we love so truly will ever "leave" us.
I am owning up that I am deserving of love, and of true happiness and the best things that the Universe can offer, and is generous to offer.
I am opening myself to be honest to people, sharing my lessons and insights from my experiences with shadows.
I am throwing out my hands widely and telling the Universe that I am willing to offer its abundance because I am ready!
I am inviting new people to my life, people from all walks of life, people sharing the same passion and interests!
I am starting a new life, writing a new chapter!
I am re-learning to love my curvaceous body and buying myself more flattering dresses to be in touch with my body, sensuality and femininity!
(Me donning a new dress, after making the promise to myself to consciously get in touch with my inner goddess more =), wearing dresses make me feel pretty and happy, something that pants and trousers cannot successfully do!)
I am setting boundaries and saying no to situations and people that overwhelm me, not because I am selfish but because I know we can all come from a higher, more joyous place!
I am taking art to another whole new level, and I'm just not talking about techniques, I felt that I have a much clearer voice because I have come so far and has much more valuable gems to share, and I'm not shy to be heard!
Of course, the path is not always easy especially when one needs to cut the fear and move on with the bravery! Fear is a ferocious dragon who spurts fire maliciously, but inside us we have just the right sword to slay off its head. I believe the chances of winning is always 100%, it is not overconfidence, but faith, that we just believe we can do it!
How about you? What are the acts of courage that you've been performing lately? Have you been struggling to slay the dragons of fear? What is your dragons about? I'll love to hear you share them in the comment section or in your blog?
Monday, September 20, 2010
I snapped this picture when our little humble corner suddenly is filled with potential customer. Sure looks busy! The flow of people was slow though, maybe because they didn't advertise and promote the event enough. Most of the people who came are supporters and friends of the vendors, artsy people, who do theatre, art, who are activist. The general public is not exposed to it yet! But it still is good exposure for emerging artists like us!
I am a fan of artworks on owl. I couldn't resist and bought three artworks from this sweet lady. All originals. She said she painted them when she was pregnant with her first child, and that was 12 years ago and she always felt reluctant to sell them. I am such a lucky owner of her artwork!
It was a splendid learning experience, I felt so so so blessed. In a way I felt we were guided to do this, and everything went smooth and well. We got assistance to carry tables, and made new contacts and friends. More people know I paint and they have ONLY nice and encouraging words to say. The other vendors are so gifted and friendly, they was not the least reluctant to share the techniques and the secret of their crafts! I hope we could run into one another in other art bazaars.
I have alot of gratitude fro Elaine for asking me to collaborate with her and initiating this 1st step (she is such a brave soul!), and Eva for just being who she is and charming people with her openness, positive energy and vibrance. Our booth was the first one (nearest to the entrance) and made quite an impression! Especially when we introduced ourselves, our names all start with Es!
I am just keeping this feeling of fullness and joy and carry it to my painting! Life is good, it's great actually! I believe if we dare to dream BIG anything is possible! And this is the lesson that I am learning and experiencing and letting it embed deeply in my soul!
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
The buyer, Sanjay, really loves the painting, he felt connected when he sees it. I saw the amazement in his eyes and felt amazed myself, I asked myself rhetorically whether something I painted is able to arouse such strong feelings! Look at his namecard, he is donned in an red indian outfit. He calls himself the "Chief of Happiness" and conducts seminars on positive thinking and beliefs. I love the copywriting of his business card, notice Blood type, it's B+ (Be positive, it's in my blood), it's funny and brilliant. And then I remember that's my blood type too!What a lovely coincidence, I never thought of my bloodtype that way! It's good to know!
Elaine, who is also an emerging artist and a new friend, has contacted me and asked me whether I'm open to joining an art festival that is happening this weekend. The "Art for Grabs" event has always been one art event where I've attended ever since I knew about its existence. Everytime I go I'll be thinking when it's my turn. I think it's my inner perfectionist that is in the way. I said yes to Elaine even though I didn't have that many artwork. And there's also the limitation that all art pieces on sale must be below RM 100.
There is something fascinating about collaborating in project like this with someone as new to it as me. It's our first time doing this. We are totally clueless about many things, especially how to display our booth. So fas we got the chairs, tables, cloth.
Sunday, September 5, 2010
1. Are you a dog person or a cat person? Both? Neither?
Monday, August 30, 2010
All is well in my world.
Went to this charming historical town in the coutry call Malacca yesterday. Found this inside a restaurant, old typewriter. semi-torn non-functional lantern. A kind of forgotten beauty. Romantic and a little sad that time has left them behind.
Colourful transport, decorated wildly with an abundance of flowers. It's call a trishaw.Portugese settlement, facing the ocean. The popular straits of Malacca where traders used often during the British colonization times. Watching the sunset, releasing worries to the sea, friends, delicious Portugese food. Everything feels like it is going to be okay.
Love pictures of feet, it says (shared) adventure, journey, experience. Mine is the one in green pants. Bought the shoe there, love how ethnic it looks.
River cruise. History is painted on the buildings.
One of my best friend from university, Ayushna and her "borrowed joy" from the kid next table where we dine. The dog is heart-melting adorable-ness. Its fur felt like that of a cuddly teddy bear you would hang on to to give you a good night's sleep.
Ayushna and Li Yien tried the fish spa near the quay. Despite the "silent please" sign, both were giggling non-stop from the itchiness when the fish crowded in to "feed" on their feet. There's a theory that the more fish that comes for your feet, the more dead skin you have. I've tried it and it's super itchy though fun so I passed this time round.
I had a really great time catching up with friends and having fun. It's funny how like art, adults need to learn how to play. I am re-learning, hopefully I'll become rather masterful in the near future. I hope all of you took the time to recuperate, rest, explore, play.
Sending you lots of love..
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
I began leaving whatever wasn't healthy. This meant people, jobs, my own beliefs and habits- any thing that kept me small. My judgements called it disloyal. Now I see it as self-loving."
I have been going through alot of changes and I am feeling a deep shift in me. I have not been blogging for a week now because I am feeling that I need all the rest I could get. I have been feeling. Vulnerability. Helplessness. Trying to find my ground and center.
I realized for too long I have been taking responsibilities for other people's burdens and trying to solve their problems. And things are showing up clearly to make me see that I need to know which are my responsibilities and which are other people's.
I am setting boundaries to that which is no longer healthy to me. Whether it is people whom I love dearly but who has been demanding too much of my energy and time. I am taking time out to take care of me. The part of me which is judgmental calls it selfish . But another part of me which is entirely made of pure love just think it is the most important thing to do now.
I am staying at a best friend's place. Just praying, meditating, journaling, meeting up with friends whose presence is comforting, who knows what I am going through and who just accepts that I am at this place now.
I am releasing and surrendering to God all that which I have not been able to let go. Learning the lesson that I cannot control everything, and trust that God will take care of everything else while I take care of myself.
Today I took a swim and with each inhale and exhale above and under water I said a positive affirmation. I asked for spiritual guidance, I bless my situations and all the people I know needed blessings and guidance.
While I cannot reveal too much about the obstacles because I am still feeling too vulnerable about sharing it in this space and I wish to protect the people who are involved, I asked (really, really with much gratitude) that you say a little prayer for me and my family.
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
I was in doubt, I was worried, I was anxious, I keep thinking "How would it turned out?", "Will people like my paintings?", "Will I feel out of place?", and worse "Will anyone buy anything at all?" These are the questions that haunt me. I decided that my mind is operating from fear and took the stance to let go of these doubts, and just surrender to whatever that will take place.
Turns out that I need not worry at all. Really, everything was smooth-sailing. Even though the sale was slow, yet I realized it is not about being there to make the money. I was there to celebrate the fact that I've come out as an artist, it was a safe space to introduce myself to people who are not necessary art collectors, but people who are interested in their own spiritual journey, who would understand why I paint. To make it even simpler, I was there to be who I am that I've not been acknowledging for the longest time-that I paint, that I am creative.
It was exhilirating, it was also scary, but it was a worthwhile experience. People think my namecard is pretty and they take it and keep it. There is someone who express interest after the art exhibition through email and I am quite over the moon happy. There is a woman who wants me to teach her child how to paint which is cute but which I gently rejected.
I'm happy, because even though I was unsure of the outcome, even though I was scared of rejection, I went ahead and was surprise at my courage and my willingness to take a step further, through decisions like these. More people know that I paint now. It is more official and I am loving the experience of being an "emerging" artist.
I invited Alison who blogs to the event. How Alison and I meet is a very magical story. I have been reading Jen Lemen's blog for as long as I read Kelly Rae's blog. Both of them are close friends in real life, and while Kelly Rae had her Flying Lessons the e-course which I signed up and enjoyed like crazy, Alison took Mondo Beyondo which was co-written by Jen Lemen. I didn't know what happened. I was blog hopping and found Alison and love her writing and her pictures and her life views. Two friends from America bought two strangers in Malaysia together. Ain't that strangely divine? And I also found out that we had a common friend who I used to paint for. This magical coincidences are mind-blowing!
Alison said we made a big round across the globe to make friends back in our homeland. The Universe does have a bizarre sense of humour.
Something in my heart tells me I have to invite Alison to the event. She was exactly as I imagined her to be, only better. In that petite frame of hers was so much gentleness and playfulness, she was sweet and joyous. And upon meeting me and showering me with her warm glow of smiles, she quickly went about taking pictures of my art. We had alot of fun getting to know one another and will meet soon for tea! Can't wait!
I stole these two photos from her blog. Do visit her to say hello.
Me looking serious in glue-ing jeweled studs on an art print.
The Golden Space, Kota Damansara.
Life is magical. I really can't stop acknowledging that. And thank you all of you readers who took the time and trouble to leave your comments on my blog to support and encourage me in my creative journey. I think all these has transformed into power that stays within me to make this art display an empowering and special one!
Thursday, August 5, 2010
Even though I love the idea of the bird nest on her head, representing the birth of creativity perhaps, I decided not to use this artwork for my artist card because it didn't feel quite genuine. I think the background was rather cluttered (and I realized it probably has alot to do with my cluttered work+ living space and also, metal clutter). It was a tough decision to make in whether to let go or hold on. In the end, I chose authenticity.
I think I am my own harshest critic when it comes to my art. I'm learning to be kinder to myself. I am making it a conscious habit to say thank you and mean it when people tell me I paint well, and hush the inner critic that keeps pushing, "you think so? You can do better". A talent is God's gift to us and I think it is just too unkind to undermine our gifts and talents.
Notice that the girl in the first painting has very owl-like eyes. I have been seeing images of owls everywhere I go and I've read up about the meaning of owl that serve as my animal totem in this moment. According to http://www.animaltotem.com/find-your-totem.html, an Animal Totem is an important symbolic object used by a person to get in touch with specific qualities found within an animal which the person needs, connects with, or feels a deep affinity toward.
I was not painting her eyes with the intention to reflect that of the owl's, but somehow it came out this way. Was quite fascinated by the way her eyes seemed to hypnotize me when I look at her.
These beautiful earrings shout out to me and I've to get them. For me, the owl represents the feminine, the moon, the night.The owl is the bird of magic and darkness, of prophecy and wisdom. It is immensely important to acknowledge this creative aspect as it ties so intimately with my femininity because creating is essentially a feminine quality. I learn to listen to my inner wisdom and trust my own instincts in following this creative journey, am learning to listen quietly to my inner voice and making decisions that are aligned with my heart.
Apart from this, I would love to share with you a wonderful artists whom I am continually amazed at because her creative energy is endless and going strong! She is so dedicated in her art and I just have to ask her how she sustain that passion and devotion! She is Regina, this is my question for her, "Hi Regina, you're so filled with creative energy and you create so often, how do you do that? Please share your secret with us in your blog? I love the passion filled desire in her eyes, and I love that you pose a question on the portrait and let your readers think 4 bit!"
Please read her insights as she share her wisdom in her blog!
I promise you'll heart her and her art!
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
(The original artwork)
(Isn't this absolutely gorgeous, cute and delightful?)
Jin, my best friend cum healer/art therapist/breatheworker cum designer (you can tell he is insanely brilliant), helped me with the design of this card. (I used the artwork for one side of the card and my details, with matching colours on the other side) So far the feedback I got from my friends are that this is by far the prettiest name card they've ever seen, and they want to just keep it secured and safe in their purse/wallet. One girl says this is like a miniature art print. I am so so so flattered.
But I must not forget to thank Jin, he helped me so much in the concept of the card and the arrangement of the words, types of fonts and the colours combination too!
I feel like I am really taking flight now, the artist card confirms something for me, and is a reflection that I am moving forward, with alot of courage and blind innocence (which is absolutely good) It is a representation of my hope, my determination, my fearlessness, that I am serious about making my dreams as a artistic and creative woman come true!I feel like I am re-affirming my identity and feeling empowered as I look at the beauty of these cards and giving them out to people, and telling everyone "I am an artist, I make inspirational and healing art".
So empowering. Thank you everyone of you out there who have been so supportive in my artistic journey. Every of your word counts as they help push me forward.
(Veggie Delite sandwich from Subway)
Vegetables, mushrooms, beancurd skin. It was yummylicious, and I feel light after the meal and happy to make another meal vegetarian!I hope you Go Green with me and consider having more vegetarian meals with me! I am making the vow to be as Green as much as I can!
Saturday, July 24, 2010
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
I realized that recycling work is quite "gendered", the girls and women will usually prefer sorting out papers, I think because it's the least dirty and it's not heavy. The men will usually sort our plastic, tins, newspapers. I've tried plastic before, I think people still need to be educated to wash their bottles properly before they recycle. Usually after a few hours helping out, my body will itch like mad and I'm super worried it's not some handiwork of unseen bugs biting me for its lunch.
Amidst the many disposed advertisements/brochures/official letters/office documents, my eyes caught sight of these. These art pieces stands out amidst the black and white paper.
Last but not least, I hope you can do a little part, it helps sustain this beautiful planet we all live in. Much love to you and your family!