Thursday, June 2, 2016

Painting in Progress - The 8 Day Abundant Art Show

This painting has been on my easel several times over the past few months. I can't find any photos of it from the beginning, but I started mixing paint colors and putting shapes on the canvas in January. I'm sharing this process here as part of the 8 Day Abundant Art Show for emerging artists to share their work on social media.

#abundantartshow on Instagram
I was loving the shapes & contrast, bringing some elements forward and keeping some background in the layers.

That crazed three ear bunny on the top left has to go....

Letting go of some elements and bringing in some other shapes, loving the process and not getting too attached to outcomes... not easy.

Does this make it look less YELLOW?

Deciding to darken some areas gave the opportunity to bring some new shapes and details in to the mix. Part of what I love about this process is the thoughts and journeys my mind takes as I mix colors, think about what shapes I want to use, how letting go allows me to listen to my instincts.

And here is where we have arrived... are we there yet?

So I'm sitting with this and listening for what comes next...

Meanwhile, I just launched a new facebook page at - stop by and visit, especially over the next week to see what I'm posting and sharing in the #abundantartshow

I'll be posting art on my social media spots all week. Thanks for stopping by. ~Hobby

Monday, January 12, 2015

The Secret to the Journey to Health: Love Yourself

True change comes from a place of love - a love of self. The Secret to the Journey to Health is learning to love ourselves. 

Having recently read the amazing book You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay, I've found so many things that resonate on this Journey to Health and being a health coach. This latest art journal entry is an illustration about loving myself on this journey to health. 

I have long known that the weight is not about the food and the exercise as much as it is about the mindset. 

Our self loathing, lack of love for who we are, and our actions are what truly keep us on the continuing cycle to gaining and losing the pounds. We carry our extra weight as a shield of armor, protecting us from facing ourselves, dealing with our issues, and finding peace of mind versus looking at ourselves with lovingkindness and forgiveness. 

The simple act of looking in the mirror and saying "I Love You" can be one of the most difficult tasks for someone who is constantly criticizing, second guessing, and loathing their actions taken on a daily basis. But it can be the most powerful action to move us in a different direction toward solving the problem of an unhealthy lifestyle. 

"Loving ourselves works miracles in our lives."
"Love is the miracle cure."
"A great respect for ourselves and a gratitude for the miracle of our bodies and our minds" are just a few of the phrases Louise Hay shares with us. 

See yourself smiling and happy every day. 
Tell yourself, "I love and accept you just as you are."
An appreciation that fills our heart to overflowing... an abundance is available to us always.

Try looking into the mirror the next time your pass by... Say "I Love You" and tell yourself all the things you've been waiting to hear from yourself. Say it often and repeat it daily. And begin to heal your body and lose the pounds of armor that surround you. 

Love Yourself. Two of the most powerful words you can learn toward the Journey to Health


Saturday, January 10, 2015

Lessons From the Falls - A Story of Rivers Paddled over the Past 30 Years

The river has always been a teacher. From the time I first dipped a paddle in the Rappahannock, to a recent paddle on the Shenandoah, the lessons continue.

That old aluminum Grumman taught me a few things about rocks and hydraulics back in the day. When we threw a wee young boy in the boat and flipped it just before the first rapids in Fredericksburg, l learned about that survival instinct that kicks in for a mother protecting her young. I also learned how to use a paddle to avoid a spill. Many teachers, many lessons.

I’ve heard some real whoppers from sitting around a campfire with old decrepit liars, cried a more than a few tears when a fellow paddler took his last breath on the James in the rapids at Hollywood. Gained a life long friend at the funeral. The river has its gifts and its payments.

Among the best lessons have been scenes that no land lover observes from an overlook on a parkway. Gorges in the glacier fed rivers of Quebec, skinny dipping in nipple freezing water, and multi-colored meteor showers under a million star lit night are pictures that don’t come on roads with pavement. Lyrical French localisms spoken in tents, farts from fellow chili eaters, and the sounds of well earned snores are the rewards (?) of a trip taken North in black fly season as sleep comes to the weary. So too is the excitement of seeing the fins of whales, spouting spray in the seaway of the St. Lawrence from the deck of a sea kayak as well as the funk of the door opening to a van packed with week old boating gear. Pleasure and pain, blessings and curses.

Belonging to the Coastal Canoeists has taught me trust and respect for the river and its travelers. Had I not followed path of a paddler and an old friend through rapids new to me, I would not have learned so quickly or been so relieved to feel a rope hit my helmet when I took the line less traveled. Women in open boats who have shown such fearlessness in surfing holes on the Ocoee under a bridge in Georgia, and led me through big water using the finesse of a paddle twist and a hip movement to allow the river to take my boat where my muscles couldn’t, are the mentors who have shared their lore over the years. There is a learning in the safety of this crowd, where the group is a collective, a critical mass of knowledge, experience, years of seeing what the river will yield and then retract.

This is the village that has raised my children. A unique assemblage of all manner of humans, young and old, of many occupations and skills, shared on the river, by a fire, and in the backyard of my home. We’ve raised roofs, broken bread and said prayers over sleeping children in rain soaked sleeping bags. Kids have stolen quarters to play pool in a cabin near the Nantahala, eaten lunch watching their parents play in boats, and suffered through enibriated renditions of Puff the Magic Dragonwhile sneaking sips of home-brew. They don’t know how lucky they are… or maybe they do. They certainly drink better beer than we did.

That last trip on the Shenandoah, I was honored to spend the day with a group of young scholars who have traveled the James from the first raindrop in the Appalachians all the way to the Atlantic. Their passion and enthusiasm for its history and biology is engaging. My hope is that they will carry that into the future, preserving our beloved waterways and keeping the old stories alive, improving the wrongs and bringing new energy to an ancient watershed. A vibrant young fellow shared a meal with me, as his father begins that journey of sharing the river with his children. He has no idea how much he has to look forward to… either of them.

The lessons are still there, waiting for the teacher to appear. 

• Read about Footprints on the James - a collaborative, experiential learning opportunity that combines faculty from the Biology and History departments and the VCU Outdoor Adventure Program, exposing students to the importance of the James River watershed and to the residents of Virginia in the present, past and future.


Thursday, January 8, 2015

Celebrations and Wins from the Past Year

Before I get too far in to the New Year, I make sure I take a look back at the past year and celebrate the accomplishments, the people and remember the events that shaped the past year. 

This was an idea I learned from Coach Laura West and Center for Joyful Business. I took a stack of multi-colored sticky notes and cut them into petal shapes, writing an accomplishment, the name of someone who impacted my life, names of those for who I am grateful, and events that I experienced throughout 2014. 

This past year was a year of letting go and receiving, dancing to great music, painting & collage, art journaling and travel. I wrote each one, remembering what transpired, how the time was spent, and the feelings and emotions each brought to my life. I also spent a moment in gratitude for each one. 

This will become a page in my art journal and lead me into the new year with an appreciation for what has been. 

I welcome you to take some time to write down your accomplishments from 2014 and express your gratitude for each of them. 


Let's connect: 

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

My Word for 2015 - Warrior

Spending New Year's Day 2015 on making art and cooking was my objective this past week, and I wanted to do an art journal page on the word I've chosen to guide me through the next 12 months. 

This year I've chosen Warrior. I created a self portrait of myself with these words as the cover of one of my 2015 art journals. My mantra is to be a warrior of my life. A fearless protector of my happiness, health, wealth, art and time. 

This blog has inspired me: 
Janette Gregson's amazing Warrior Women Art Journals

I've learned to take daily actions in choosing happiness, health and wealth every day. Those actions each day bring me task by task to the place where I am now and want to be most. I want every day to be focused on choosing wisely how I spend my time, and with whom I spend it. 

As Maya Angelou says, "When people show you who they are, believe them." As I intend to show the people I spend time with who I am, truly and deeply... A warrior for myself and of myself. 

And Art... making Art... seeking Art... sharing my talents, my gifts, my inspiration, and the art that inspires me - art journaling every week, painting with intention, taking time to read, learn and practice making sacred marks. 

Warrior: Fearless Protector of Happiness, Health, Wealth, Art and Time. 

What is your word for 2015?

Here's another Word of the Year link:


Let's connect: 

Monday, December 29, 2014

End Strong and Start Wild

The lovely Effie Wild has generously offered a giveaway on her site that you should check out!

A gift from an artist Effie, to another artist, Flora Bowley, who I also adore...

Effie is giving away two seats in an e-course painting class called Bloom True taught by Flora beginning on January 26th.

So get over there before Jan 12th (do this now before you get all partied out) and let's make more art in 2015!

Friday, October 3, 2014

Tasting the Sacred

Today I am reposting a previous blog entry from a few years ago.  I continue wanting to step to the edge and fly with the winds of a changing season.


"Something opens our wings. Someone fills the cup in front of us: We taste only sacredness." ~Rumi

What is arriving at the door of your imagination this fall? Does the change in season bring an emerging awareness of change in yourself? A deeper understanding of self? A new passion to explore? A new relationship or a change in one you already have? A new level of closeness?

As we prepare for the cooler weather and feather our nests for the winter, we may bring a gathering of internal harvest. What has shown up in your life recently that you may have not fully embraced? Too busy, too much to do, ignoring an urge, avoiding intuition... have you been afraid to come to the edge? to truly soar?

Read the words by French poet Guillaume Apollinaire:
“Come to the edge, he said.

They said: We are afraid.

Come to the edge, he said.
They came.

He pushed them and they flew.”

When wings arrive at our door, and change comes on the wind, do we resist flying? It is difficult to go to the edge and jump, building our wings on the way down. Eleanor Roosevelt tells us we must do the thing we think we cannot do.

But what of that internal resistance?

This week, after listening to my favorite mentor, I feel wings. And I hear that still small voice which I have ignored too often. It is telling me to come to the edge.

How can we better trust that inner calling?

I believe we must listen to the voice, even if it doesn't make sense... or we are afraid to hear. For even as we jump, there is a divine plan. We drop, but we glide. And with the courage to take the next action and flap our wings, we glide again. Divine guidance shows us that by moving our wings, gradually we learn to fly. By moving our wings, by taking action, we do what our inner voice tells us and suddenly we are flying.  It is said that birds do not fly because they have wings, but they decided they wanted to fly and were given wings. In the end, it is not so much what we do, but what we become.

As we gather our inner harvest, welcome the change in seasons and the change within. Let us feather our nest with deeper understanding of what we are being called to do. With wings, we come to the edge and fly.


Let's connect: