Monday, March 28, 2011

spring back

Pictured above is the pride of our front yard. We started with these blue Himalayan poppies a few years ago and every year as they blossom they take on a greater spread. Ken and I will be preparing some small seed pots this week-end for the start of our garden. As I write this, it is blustering with noises of the wind outside, swaying trees take on a wonderful gray fused with the sky, (and not to mention the recent snowfall and ongoing chilliness) it is wonderful to see the new light and read by its glow before I go to bed. Happy Spring.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

on being comfortable........

What does it mean to be comfortable - a house, a job, wonderful surroundings and fun activities to go out and see and of course the friendships that we nurtured throughout the years are forces in our lives to stay put forever. Maybe we get use to routines, beautiful environments and we continue on not stretching ourselves to perhaps greater heights of challenges? Maybe we extend ourselves in other ways in a hobby or picking up new reading material that forces as to think harder? Maybe it just doesn't matter and one is happy where they are; is perfect with one's setting, content, and fulfilled? Maybe being comfortable is a good thing? Or is it too easy? Maybe too good of a thing makes us give up other chances to see, learn, experience and fully develop other areas of expertise in our lives. I am grappling with this issue at the moment. My life is pretty good, although I feel that a new opportunity overseas or in another part of the country would lift my esteem out of complacency and to a better learning place about how I feel about myself. Maybe I am looking a gift horse in the mouth? As human beings we need to destroy what we create too.
To skirt the issue, I have decided to include several self portraits.
Below, is the opening painting called Princess Parlee and on the left two smaller drawings. (Above, is my one of my favorite paintings that sold at my recent show!) For a long while I have been avoiding the issue; have thought long and hard about it. The verdict is called change. Not sure where it will take me or where I will go, but along with change comes hard work, endless scrutiny which I have been doing for a long time and pushing ideas against the wall, hounding the hell out of myself. I have been too comfortable for the past few years and now is the time for another lifetime, another move. It won't happen too soon, but I am encouraged to do something about it. It's time to do, but rest assured, I will probably get comfortable all over again.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Ambassador's Pagoda

Ambassador's Pagoda is considered the main centre of Buddhism in Hanoi. Ken spied this temple out in our Lonely Planet book and we walked over to the temple in the blustery cold. I am always thrilled to happen upon these moments; seeing the women coming together before their prayerful meditation, the interior of the space is fascinating with the massive array of offerings and the photo ancestors homages, allowing me to listen to their chanting of prayerful meditation was the plus. I spent some time observing the ladies, all dressed in their winter coats and hats, a communal setting at best, with their prayer books splayed out before them, it seemed to be the place to be in Hanoi. Outside the temple, Hanoians would come by and listen to the prayers, drop money in the offering box or incense in the huge urns. On the streets, vendors sold gifts and trinkets for the pagoda - papers to be burned for the ancestors, beads, fruit and miscellaneous items that I fail to remember. It is a city pagoda by the ongoing sounds of the traffic that you can hear inside the temple; a blending of the outside sensations into the world of thoughtful ruminations making my morning a sensational impact of imagery and delight.