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Wednesday, July 27, 2011

GIVE YOURSELF PERMISSION

 More often than not, we give reasons why we can't...or shouldn't...or why we think it's impossible. I've decided that I'm sick of that language, frankly. I don't want to wait for someone to "approve" to give me the "go-ahead", to provide a certificate that gives the nation or world my credentials before I create. I don't want to wait for the right time or for the right amount of money to be saved up. I want to do and to be.
 There comes a time in your life where you look in the mirror and recognize that you have something to offer the world. You realize your self worth. I'm there. Is what I see perfect? Nope. Is there potential? Yep. Is the goal perfection or experience?
 For me, it's experience. My goal in life is not to be the girl I was...it's to be the woman I respect. The one who continually grows through each circumstance. I don't wanna be stagnant water. It stinks. It makes things vile and corrupts. If I'm to be like water....I wanna be that crazy, out-of-control raging rapid with all the wild beauty it professes!
 I say this because I am giving birth. No, not another child...but new ideas! There have been far too many dreams and goals, ideas, thoughts, images and words that I need to purge from my brain. What good are they just sittin' in there? Sure, they need time to grow and mature before making their grand entrance into the world. However, to hold them captive just seems so wrong!
 This week marks the final commitment for myself and for my husband. We've decided that we are worth the risk. We've decided to invest in ourselves in lieu of always investing in other people. Not to say we will cease contributions both monetarily or physically with our time...but we have decided to take a little money of our own and invest in our own vision because we are worth it. Our lives are worth it. We don't want to watch life happen on TV, online or hear about other's living out their dreams. We want to invest in ourselves so we can realize our dreams and our own creative future.
 Our first major investment was the purchase of new equipment to produce written work, audio work and film work. Our second major investment was to dedicate our time, our money and part of this structure to create our first media office (There will be more to come if I have anything to say and do about it).
 This little refuge will provide opportunities. I'm convinced of it. Once the people are in and the doors are closed...ART TAKES FLIGHT! It will be living on every available medium; from books to film to podcast to radio dramas and the possibilities are endless!
 We have laid our ground work, our foundation, our principles and our mission on every surface. It in living and breathing in the concrete foundation to the walls we erected, to the mud that bound the drywall together, to the sub floor with our blessings prayed upon it, to our efforts at recycling and using materials in new ways; to the brick enhancements, the wood flooring, the paint that now defines the walls to the brushed nickel lighting fixtures that adorn the ceiling. Every inch of it has purpose and our hands have been all over it. We got dirty and we didn't wait for any help. We had the vision. We did the work. We see where this space will take us and we have committed to ourselves and to all of you
 So here's to our little media company. May you continue to grow and sell copies in the U.S. & U.K.! May you continue to set appointments to record pod casts and other fun endeavors! May our minds be fresh, our spirits in tune with one another and may we always have the mind set that WE CAN and WE WILL.

Monday, July 25, 2011

The Artist, Denied.

 The importance of a voice goes way beyond one's ability to speak eloquently, sharply or with great gusto. It lies more in the wake of the purpose of that voice. Individuality being of the essence and purpose being the force behind our speech.
 I suppose the same goes for written word, art in many mediums and even photography and film. There is an attitude in which we create and an attitude that we portray as we send off our creativity into the vast universe with hope that someone will connect and agree to some measure. It's that agreement, the acknowledgement of..."yeah, I get it" to which we all aspire.
 I remember being that off the wall kid. I didn't make sense to people. I was counted as odd or not even significant enough to be acknowledged half of the time. I was the "I'll deal with her later" girl or the "she's not special enough" child. Know anyone who fits that bill in your life? Let me give you some advice.
 It's those odd kids who will change your life in your later years. They are the ones that will indeed grow up to be your entertainers, musicians, writers and painters. Your actors, your politicians, your world changers and your secret service protection. Creative thinkers go way beyond your typical arts. They change the world.
 In one form or another, they are dangerous. Yes, I said DANGEROUS. Right wing and left wing alike have creative people...all trying to prove a point. They scream THIS IS WHAT I THINK LIFE IS ALL ABOUT! This is what is important to ME. This is what I want for MY children, MY community and MY world. Danger is necessary if we are to grasp the adventure and excitement of our living. L-I-V-I-N-G.
 I, for one, don't want to walk this earth as a drone. I don't want to live in a little box that is just like my neighbors, nor do I want to exit an educational system that spits me out to do and say as everyone else. My hope is for my son to use his voice, stand with purpose, encourage others and be mentored by men and women of great honor and character. In turn, I want him to grow up to be a man of great character and honor who mentors those coming up behind him. A life cycle that improves the quality of life rather than destroying and allowing so many to shrivel up and die without experiencing the power of their voice. The recognition of their purpose.
The saddest aspect of ignoring those off the wall children is that not only will they grow with a emaciated sense of self, they will not be able to teach other's that they indeed have self-worth as well. When you ignore that child-you ignore HOPE. When you think that child needs psychological help, what they need is to be told their ideas are valid and have purpose....even at 3, 7, 12 and 14 years of age. Whether that odd child goes to university or is paving the road in excruciating heat, they are worth your time, your effort, your encouragement and your leadership.
 I think that's what Generation X missed out on the most. We did not have mentors. There was no ushering into the next stage of life. All we heard was the motto: Just Do It. Why do it? Do you hear me? Can you see me? Are you taking the time to stop and listen to me? Here I am? Can you REALLY see, hear and understand me?
 Take the time to look that child in the eye today. To make the world wind of business stop for a brief second and hone in on that child's wish to be heard. You may learn something. You may learn what makes them tic. You may also learn a great deal about yourself. Good or bad. Understood or misunderstood...the artist deserves your time. Don't deny them and certainly, don't deny yourself. What an honor and a privilege we have as wielders of time as great elders to our family and community to stop and listen...to guide...to encourage...to mentor our kids through healthy self-expression. 

2 MONTHS IN

  I am two months in. In where, you ask? Two months living in our state capital. It's a foreign land to me.There aren't any trees here. No rolling hills or cliffs of large rock carved by ancient glaciers. No ravines or waterfalls here, either. There aren't any lakeside breezes or lake effect snow.
  What is it is BLAZIN' HOT. Concrete hot enough to burn your feet and cook some lunch. The first month was a big tease. The land was lush, vibrant green and it rained gently and consistently. The city was comfortable and enjoyable and people were pleasant.
  The second month was the true grit of city living. It's been in the 103-108 heat index. No breeze and rarely an easy breath has been taken. The grass is now dormant and crunchy and without color. The closest resemblance would be a faint old bail-o-hay yellow. People are GROUCHY. The people who were out and about socializing are now hiding inside the comfortable air conditioned house and apartment. As I said, there are no trees here. There is no refuge.
  I have discovered what it like to be a prisoner in your own home. I make an attempt to take my son to the pool a few times a week. As of late, we can tolerate 2 hours at best and then we pack it in and head home. What I would give to be able to sit under the canopy of lusciously full, mature maple tree in the summer. Makes you wanna get lost in a book. The sound of air moving through the branches and flirtatiously brushing against each individual leaf like a man in a bar full of women. Subtle, yet purposeful. Just hoping to move the encounter to the next level.
  Yes, you may have guested that I am not your typical 30-something that is married and raising a child in the city. What I am is a girl (at heart) who grew up in Northeast Ohio in the farm community of Portage County. I ate a lot of vegetables and worked our garden as well as our neighbors farm. I don't like shoes. I don't like shopping.
  What I love is the experience of nature and the outdoors. What I equally love is the artist's  expression of the human spirit through art. This is why I am here. My husband and I are artists. We are attempting to launch our new business of only 10 months. Multimedia companies grow slowly...so I am learning, but they are well worth the effort and the satisfaction is much greater than any cubical or regular paying gig can offer.
  Our house is a bustle of writers; my 10 year old son included. We publish books, we write screenplays and novels and poetry. We produce independent films, shorts and commercial. Our goal is to help each artist...create the opportunity for themselves to live and shine and share their art. Not a bad goal in life, now is it....
  What you will find here will be postings of my flaws and well as my triumphs. This is where I allow myself to be grammatically INCORRECT. I'm allow to speak without being perfect. It will be a blog about people and places and things that assist in the growth of my human spirit. This is where you will see me learn from every person I encounter as well as from the great God of the Universe that I am diligently seeking to understand and listening to.
  From farm girl to city broad with an attitude. From dirt poor to exquisitely rich in life experience. This is about imperfect me.