Australia Day 2016

Words on the art journal page are from Welcome to Country by Uncle Bill - William O'Brien of the Birpai Nation. I pay my respects to the Elders of this country both past and present.

My Country The first poem I ever learned at school, still my favourite.

The love of field and coppice,
Of green and shaded lanes.
Of ordered woods and gardens
Is running in your veins,
Strong love of grey-blue distance
Brown streams and soft dim skies
I know but cannot share it,
My love is otherwise.

I love a sunburnt country,
A land of sweeping plains,
Of ragged mountain ranges,
Of droughts and flooding rains.
I love her far horizons,
I love her jewel-sea,
Her beauty and her terror -
The wide brown land for me!

Kudditji Kngwarreye expressing his Story through the medium of paint. In this video you will hear Kudditji talk and sing about his homelands whilst viewing his colourful interpretations of said homelands in paint.

A stark white ring-barked forest
All tragic to the moon,
The sapphire-misted mountains,
The hot gold hush of noon.
Green tangle of the brushes,
Where lithe lianas coil,
And orchids deck the tree-tops
And ferns the warm dark soil.

Core of my heart, my country!
Her pitiless blue sky,
When sick at heart, around us,
We see the cattle die -
But then the grey clouds gather,
And we can bless again
The drumming of an army,
The steady, soaking rain.

Artist: Gracie Ward Napaltjarri Dreaming: Muntati - My Grandmothers Country

Core of my heart, my country!
Land of the Rainbow Gold,
For flood and fire and famine,
She pays us back threefold -
Over the thirsty paddocks,
Watch, after many days,
The filmy veil of greenness
That thickens as we gaze.

An opal-hearted country,
A wilful, lavish land -
All you who have not loved her,
You will not understand -
Though earth holds many splendours,
Wherever I may die,
I know to what brown country
My homing thoughts will fly.

~ Dorothea Mackellar

Artist: Nellie Marks Nakamarra
Dreaming: Travelling Through my Country
Painted in Alice Springs 2011

I so love watching Nellie Marks paint this - it is like a moving meditation.

Walking in This World

Walking in This World by Julia Cameron, is the sequel to The Artist's Way. Our creative cluster has decided to work through the book this year.

So I read through the first chapter and I got to the task at the end. I got myself all ready to participate, and then I read, 'Task: Do Nothing'. Do Nothing? Really? So that afternoon, I got a beach towel and headed off to the beach and sat - no book, no phone, just my towel and my doggie, couldn't leave her behind. Oh how lovely it was. As I write this I think of a friend I mentioned this task to. She said how difficult it would be for her to do, to have nothing to do. And I wonder, as I write this, how are you at doing nothing?

I invite you to take 15 minutes and join in, doing nothing. That's me resting in the picture above, as I bravely tackle the task of doing nothing. My brain told me it was time to redo my toe nail polish, but you know what brains are like, always coming up with things for you to do. So I thanked it for the information and refocussed on the task at hand.

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, then rest afterwards". Spanish Proverb.

Dr Ellen Langer - Mindfulness, Mindlessness, Art

"All it takes to become an artist is to start doing art." ~ Dr. Ellen Langer

So no more excuses, start doing your art today.

Over the last few years I have been learning about and practicing mindfulness. Recently a friend shared a video of Dr Ellen Langer speaking on mindfulness. Known as the 'mother' of mindfulness, Dr Langer has been working with mindfulness for over forty years. In addition to being an educator, author and researcher, Dr Langer is an artist.

Dr Langer defines mindfulness as, 'the act of noticing new things'. "Simply notice new things, that puts you into mindfulness."

If you are interested in mindfulness and creativity, I recommend watching Dr Langer's talks. Over the past few days, I have been looking for new things in my environment. In the walks I normally do, and with the people I am with. I invite you to join me and start to notice at least 5 new things each day.

Ellen Langer Part 4 from LIPTV 2 on Vimeo.

Ellen talking about Mindful Creativity...

Website: Learn more about Dr Langer and view her wonderful art - my favourites The Greyhound Bus - click here

Today in a list... I invite you to notice and write each day about what you noticed... one idea: write what you notice in a list.

Artist Date: Visiting Jason DeCaires Taylor

"For sculptor Jason deCaires Taylor, the ocean is more than a muse — it's an exhibition space and museum. Taylor creates sculptures of human forms and mundane life on land and sinks them to the ocean floor, where they are subsumed by the sea and transformed from lifeless stone into vibrant habitats for corals, crustaceans and other creatures.

The result: Enigmatic, haunting and colourful commentaries about our transient existence, the sacredness of the ocean and its breathtaking power of regeneration."

"Video documentary detailing the changes to the Silent Evolution installation including unseen footage of the process behind Jason DeCaires Taylor works."

Heart of a fish. Underwater sculpture figure.

Journal prompt: while watching a video or tv show, quickly sketch then colour something that you notice.

The Artist's Way Book Group 2016

If you would like to work through The Artist's Way this year, please let me know.

Our 2016 facebook group is now full and underway - however if you, or a small group, would like to work through the book with me as your guide, please contact me.

The Artist's Way is a book by Julia Cameron. It is for those people who wish to explore their creativity through a 12 step process.