Friday, 31 July 2015

Rare indeed

It's a rare blue moon tonight, an auspicious occasion. The image below is from my journal, worked on this morning. What will the blue moon bring for you ?

The golden rays of the moon light up the people adrift in the boat. A symbolic crane, protector from evil, stands on the words, 'expect someone to answer, open the door right away'.  Once in a blue moon !

The article below was taken from

On Friday, July 31st we will have a Full Blue Moon in the sign of Aquarius.

A blue moon is the term for the second full moon in the same month. The first full moon of the month was in Capricorn on July 1st, and now we are saying good-bye to this month of change with a special blue moon.
These full moons have been the bookends to the important lessons learned over the past month.
One of the most special aspects of this moon is that we won’t have another blue moon month until 2018. For many of us, we will be receiving our last bits of a long awaited wake-up call that actually began back in 2012, far before most of us were aware of the changes that were developing.
The energies of this moon are only being magnified by Venus turning retrograde on the 25th, which is just one of seven planets slowing and turning retrograde the week prior to this lunar event.
This cosmic event is unprecedented—it’s truly a month of transitions.
The skies have collided to physically slow all of us down. It seems that it is so easy for most of us to get caught up in our daily lives that we often feel we can push aside issues or decisions because it seems like there will always be more time—more chances.
This moon we are being asked to stop, look around and to see the bigger picture.
We are being asked to notice where in our lives we have been neglecting the truth, or what situations we have been putting off. It’s not easy to deal with life head on—but this moon isn’t only encouraging it, it is making it a requirement.
There is so much happening around this moon in terms of once-in-a-lifetime type chances. It’s as if we are all on the edge of something so big and we have to make the decision to take the path we’ve always taken—or to jump into the territory of new possibilities.
Because of Venus, the planet of love, going retrograde a week prior to this moon, there will be a heavy connection to romantic relationships. This isn’t about just any sort of love though—it’s about the kind of love that comes around only once in a blue moon.
The full moon will be shining a decadent light of truth deep within our hearts.
This will give us the opportunity to get  a good grasp on what is in our heart of hearts—if we don’t have our soulmate or twin flame as our lover, then there is a good chance we are aware of who they are, or may start to recognize them around this time.
Sometimes the most wonderful aspects of our lives can be the most terrifying—and that is okay, no one ever said greatness and easiness were one and the same. The thing we all have to remember, though, is that if it doesn’t scare us even a little bit, then it lacks the ability to be that once in a lifetime opportunity to change our lives for the better.
Nothing amazing ever comes from us staying in our comfort zones.
This is about opening our eyes to what is right in front of us—and knowing that some chances don’t come around every day.
Sometimes situations come down to now or never—this blue moon is showing us exactly what we are afraid of losing the most, and it’s challenging us to make the big moves necessary now.
While it is true that those people that are meant for us, that they won’t ever leave us—sometimes humans make the wrong decisions. We make choices based on fear, or try to do what we think is right instead of listening to our hearts.
It seems that so many of us the past few years have been making as many wrong decisions as possible, and while it has seemed difficult, and even painful at times—know that it was necessary, and all part of the divine plan.
Sometimes we really do need to experience everything that is wrong to know what is right.
As amazing as this moon will be, and necessary—it’s going to be one that challenges us on every single level. In the build up to this lunar event we may have been feeling restless, or have had an excess of nervous energy. Our pulses may have been racing, and it may have been harder for us to relax or fall asleep at night.
Our souls can sense that we are on the verge of something big—but it’s up to us to initiate change.
We are on the threshold of having massive pieces of the puzzle collide. There may be big changes or upsets in the status quo during the next several weeks. We may find ourselves acting in ways that only a few weeks ago we never thought possible, but Aquarius is lighting a fire inside of our hearts and daring us to break the boundaries that have held us back for far too long.
We can only deny ourselves of what we want the most for so long.
While we may feel anxious at all of the possible changes being presented to ourselves—know that the universe won’t bring us anything we aren’t ready for.
The truth of it is there is no such thing as the perfect time—so now is as good a time as any.
Everything that we have been going through the past year has been leading up to this moon. It’s the time of infinite possibilities, of desires bubbling over and manifesting themselves in our lives in ways we never thought possible.
No matter what has come in or out of our lives in the past few years, once in a while we are given the chance to have everything we’ve always wanted—we just have to make the choice now to not let it go.
Because certain chances only come around once in a blue moon.

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Dar ir-Rummien

A short film set in the Mill Room where the artist's co op had a gallery last year. If you click on th link and go to the  FaceBook Page you will see the photos of the shoot. If you look closely enough you may just spot some of my artwork used in the stage set !

Friday, 24 July 2015

Re purposed books

To make an art journal, find yourself a book from a charity shop. Hard backs are best and if they have an interesting cover all the better. You should be able to pick up a no longer loved novel for 50c.

First job is to reduce the number of pages so that when you start to work in your journal it has space to expand. Take a steel rule and scalpel and take out evey other page. Don't tear the pages out as the stitching will come undone and the whole book will fall apart.
Keep the removed pages to use another day. They can be used in mixed media works or back in the journal.

Unless you specifically want the written word, typed pages, paint with white or black paint as a neutral surface to work on. Any old paint will do for this job,... household emulsion or cheap poster paints. Gesso makes a lovely velvety surface to work on but is comparitively expensive.

Don;t forget to paint the hard back cover as well so that you can decorate as you wish.

So this book is going to be based on some intuitive collage. A notebook or diary as I go through the Summer. We plan to do some workshops in the Autumn , so this will be a great reminder for me,

I randomly tore pages from old magazines. Not thinking too much about what I was doing but chosing images that appealed. Lay them all out in front of you and start with one image for the background. build on this with the images that catch the eye. When you have finshed, take time to ponder the collage, what is it saying to you ?

The symbolism: Mountain (Xwejni in Gozo) with a figure on top, unreachable perhaps. A figure has been placed on a pedastal, possibly by them selves ? Perhaps the characture is not what they seem, snake skin for clothing, a peacocks head dress, a mask for a face. Three monkeys climbing, hear , speack, see no evil. There are guides to help travellers accross the water aided by some ancient words. You have to be able to see them before they can help.

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

OMG Déjá vu

Today was a scary time-warp experience. I wrote the following post 3 years ago and today I relived it. As I  sifted thro' a barn full of belongings,,,, sigh...Sadly the box of trinkets destined for my children has been purloined by an unscrupulous individual but that is their karma, and mine that I have to live with out it.

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Hoarding, we all hoard don't we? Physical stuff, the mountains of no longer used things we can't bare to throw away. What about all those 'ideas' and beliefs we hoard? All that mumbo jumbo that we hang onto for dear life, the baggage that we think defines us.
I have been pondering this notion of hoarding all week !

Mostly because it was my daughter's 21st birthday yesterday and I decided to give her, amongst other things,  a selection of jewellery that had been given to me on my 21st birthday. These items had been stashed away in a campaign box for at least 25 years, along with semi precious jewels my brother had brought back from India, ( I had long forgotten to have them made into something wearable)  a letter from my father when I was at school, a cigarette box of  cowry shells collected on a beach in Ireland. A photo booth pic of me with very short platinum blond hair, a Victorian mother of pearl cigarette holder and many other unlooked at trinkets. Daughter can sell them if she wants, to subsidise a trip to India, I don't need to hold onto them any more.

What about beliefs? preconceived ideas? do I need those any more? Does your mind look like our barn, full of clutter?
Buddhists feel that we should walk our path on this earth and when we leave...leave no trace. We are all so caught up in this idea that we should not be forgotten. Everyone wants to leave a mark....'don't forget me, I was important'....
Filling in the Census a few weeks ago, I pondered the religion question. What am I ? Christian?, Buddhist? I don't know. So I didn't put anything..... 'Now' ist, possibly, 'this moment' ist ....maybe !    The problem comes when the tag 'ist' or 'ism' is put onto a word.  It's suddenly weighted down with baggage, beliefs. Ideals. We become entangled with rules and regulations. Hmmm. point is.... we do the same with art. We become entangled with our notions of what our art should look like. Frightened to stray far from the norm.
Not knowing is liberation.    Aaaaahh !

Sunday, 7 June 2015

A sadness

We may not always get what we want, but we always get what we need.

What we want 
is never simple.
We move among the things 
we thought we wanted:
a face, a room, an open book
and these things bear our names---
now they want us.

But what we want appears
in dreams, wearing disguises.
We fall past,
holding out our arms
and in the morning 
our arms ache.
We don't remember the dream,
but the dream remembers us,

It is there all day
as an animal is there
under the table,
as the stars are there even in full sun.

~Linda Pastan

Flowers and grasses picked at Wied il Ghasri staining water colour paper.
One of my eco dyed prints.

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Itchiness in the not knowing.

My body is on fire !    Not in the biblical sense, lol, but itchy. There is a flock (?) of microscopic white flies that are trying to eat me alive. They have just appeared and invaded my flat.  I suspect it has something to do with the fact the wind has dropped.  I was having a 'Hideous Kinky' moment last night when the onslaught happened. You don't notice these little monsters until it is too late and the histamine has kicked in...outch. I don't remember this happening last year and I can feel a can of piff paff coming on. As much as I hate using chemicals and indeed am concerned as to what it may be doing to my karma....urgent action is called for.

I have found in the past that a period of uncertainty and unknowing has been accompanied by a a restlessness and general feeling of uneasiness which manifests, in my case, as itchy skin.. I am certainly experiencing a trying time. Whilst living here on Gozo is wonderful I am struggling to start a business and I am finding it hugely frustrating. There seems to be a block in the road whichever path I take. I am set up and ready to go with all the right permits and documents in place and it just isn't happening. There is a hurdle right at the end of each very long road. Maybe there is a karmic reason for this and I should just trust the process, whatever happens is for the greater good ! easier said than done. There are other changes going on too and it is difficult not to get caught up in the chaos. All the time trying to remember 'all great changes are preceded by chaos' !
As Deepak Chopra said 'What feels painful in the midst of change is a new opening beginning to take form; it is darkest just before dawn, just as it is a complete mess before it all works itself out. Trust life to do what it needs to do, and recognize how you’re growing along the way.'

Anyway as is usual in situations like this a koan presents itself to me. A random trailing on line I ended up listening to a PZI talk, and there was the koan I need to investigate.

Book of Equanimity
Case 20

Main Case:

Attention! Master Dizang asked Fayan, “Where have you come from?”
“I pilgrimage aimlessly,” replied Fayan.
“What is the matter of your pilgrimage?” asked Dizang.
“I don't know'” replied Fayan.
“Not knowing is the most intimate,” remarked Dizang. 
At that, Fayan experienced great enlightenment.

..... and there you have it !
In the meantime while I wait for everything to fall into place I carry on with what I do. At the moment I am making some wearable art in the form of  upcycled clothing and accessories to sell at the Sunscape festival here on Gozo. Hope to see you there !