yep. I don't know what to write about today so i like cereal.
Is it really December 16th already? I am trying to grasp the concept and i am still having difficulty. 2010 is right around the corner which also seems strange. Do you remember trying to imagine 2010 when it was 2000? Wait..that means my 20 year high school reunion is not far off...20 years ago? how can that be? Almost half my life? what the F?
It seems like yesterday that I was driving around in my 1969 BMW 1600 with the sunroof open and the surfboards on top. My best friend Gus and I, used to run out of gas and have to push it down Montana Ave (thankfully mostly down hill) and fill it up with the five bucks we had between the two of us. That car was awesome. I learned to drive it by double clutching because the synchro mesh was out from 1st to 2nd. That means you couldn't go straight from 1st to second, you had to press the clutch in, put it in neutral, let the clutch out, then press in the clutch and then put it into 2nd...I got pretty good at this and found out later, that alot of race car drivers do this for smoother shifting. Try it...
I drove Marco, my first dog, home in that car from East LA. We were in the slow lane on the 10 FWY going West and he was sitting practically in my lap as we drove home all the while trying to think of what i would tell my parents. I was 19 years old.
that was a cool car.
I still love driving. I would rather drive cross country than fly if i had the time. Or better yet, get on my motorcycle and ride across...either way though, the sense of freedom and adventure is always the same. I still sometimes giggle at the fact that we, as humans, drive cars. it is a funny concept really. Look at the position we are in...sitting next to each other and traveling through space. If you watch cars go by, imagine there is no car, only the people, and the image of them sitting side by side traveling down the road seems strange and funny. Or when we are all sitting in traffic, literally...
I suppose that is why i love to do things like ride a bike or ski. Driving is sort of an extended chair, but with cycling etc, we are actually moving and being a part of the landscape....
So I like cereal.
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
yep. I don't know what to write about today so i like cereal.
Thursday, December 3, 2009
funny..i just wrote a good piece and lost it by hitting the wrong button...so then i thought that wasn't meant to be and I need to be more to the point.
On my links to other blogs is one from Drew Rozell called Insights on Consciously Creating a Very Cool Life (Check it out). Anyway, I read his latest entry and it is a mirror image of something I have been thinking alot about.
The idea of our purpose in life.
It comes down to three steps:
well the first two are the hardest and that is my main challenge these days...Deciding what to do and who i am and then Committing to it.
So to keep this post simpler than the last one that I just lost, I am deciding to Decide and Committing to Deciding and I will attract the Decision through this practice....see how it is a perfect harmonious cycle?
Love and Understanding
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
Nita and I both love Starbucks...heck, we love coffee and Starbucks happens to be just one of many suppliers of this lovely dark, roasted, sweet, yummy substance that gives me so much joy and meaning in life...but i digress.
The other day, I think it was Friday of last week, we walked in and WHAM! There it was...Christmas music playing already...at first we didn't really notice it and then as we were ordering our Grande and Venti it seeped in like a secret experiment...like a controlled subliminal alien message. Nita noticed it first and said, "oh my gosh, holiday music" and there it was. Just like that we had moved through the turkey and come out the other side into the parallel universe of Black Friday, soon to be followed by Cyber Monday.
Now don't get me wrong, I love Christmas time just as much as the next coffee fiend in line, but I just wasn't quite ready yet. I feel so forced into the mindset. I couldn't believe the fact that there were strategies being played out all over the country for Black Friday shopping and lines were formed all around different stores with crazed parents and lunatics chomping at the bit to get the shopping over with. Me? I'd rather lie in a pool of wet horse poo and eat flies.
did i make that too clear? not that I don't want to shop, but what the *&^%#@???? I just can't imagine lining up at 5 am in the morning with a bunch of lunatics just to get my shopping over with. No.
I prefer to wait until the last week because at least those lunatics are like me...procrastinators who are willing to wait until they really feel the holiday spirit grab hold of them and scare them into submission...we are all looking at each other and understanding our plight and it gives us strength and solidarity. Besides, the sales are just as good and frankly, thanks to the lunatic type A shoppers, the lines and crowds aren't as bad...so there.
my point? not sure today...i think i realized that December 1, 2009 is here and the official countdown has begun to 2012 and the end of the world. At least that is only two more years of shopping.
Love and Understanding.
Monday, November 30, 2009
Across the street I noticed this old lady in a bright blue coat just standing there....doing what I was doing it seemed, but she didn't have a camera...she was just observing the world and I wondered what she was thinking about....dressed up and out on the town...her life so filled with experience and age. Me on the other side of the mirror watching her watching the world. She was so still the whole time and in front of her was constant movement...and then I noticed something funny. The guy on the left of the frame walking to the right had walked by a few times and as I watched he would walk by her a few feet, turn around and walk back...so started snapping pictures of them and this one finally arrived in my lap...the vision of the old and young, the stillness and the movement, the chaos and the perfect design, the color and the drab world we live in sometimes....it all came together for one second in my lens.
I am pretty sure the man on the left was either homeless or had some sort of disorder as I could tell he was talking to himself and obviously stuck in some pattern of movement...then I imagined both of them young and it made me think that we are all traveling together and some of us will be a beacon and others will never stop moving.
She seems so perfectly still and put together and regal...almost like she wasn't there at all...maybe she wasn't...maybe she was an angel watching over him...or me...or the street....sometimes i don't know if she was really there at all...she seems so out of place in this world of distraction and movement and life...the calm stillness of a watching eye....I wish I knew her name and her history...
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
well, it is here....just like that...the day that I wait for all year...the day of the feast and the weeks of leftovers...this year Nita and I are hosting a big one at the new house. When I think of Thanksgiving, i think of a holiday that is the most family and friend oriented out of all during the year. It is a chance to connect with people with no worry about giving presents or crap like that...just a time to be together and eat and enjoy each others company...of course there is always the fact that not EVERYONE can always be there due to space and time, but at least we are all doing the same thing on the same day...that counts for something, and in a world these days, where it seems that human beings are less and less connected, Thanksgiving is the one day that brings them together. I am always surprised by the amount of people who actually don't like Thanksgiving because of "having" to be with family etc...now, i won't pretend to understand not getting along with my family, and I am sure this day is a burden for some, but I have to say that the obligation is only once a year and for this year i wish and hope for people to realize that life is more important than not being with the family. This is not to say that family is always easy or pleasant, but they are family and the only one you have so deal with it...look outside of yourself and don't be so selfish...spend some time listening on Thanksgiving and not being so sensitive. Enjoy the food and the drink and if it is too much to bare, than drink a bit more than others, but at least enjoy life for that day.
this will be my first thanksgiving with my "own" family...what I mean, is that I have a wife now and this will be our first Thanksgiving together...the beginnings of a larger family that has already begun to take shape...the extended joy of those who are now considered family that were once not a part of my life. I am thankful for them and for what they have given me. This year will be a year of many firsts for sure.
Of course, I wish they could all be here...my dad and Swirly, Taylor and Christos and Lisa, Jesse, Kai and Ruby and Gus and...where do I stop..there would be 100's here...now that is something to be thankful for. the day we can't wish for our friends and family to be there will be a day that is sad indeed so even if they can't be there in body, they will be in spirit.
As i write this today, i feel it is a bit of fluff and I am emotional from a good place...i am trying to drill down and get to the meat of what i really want to say and i think it is very very simple.
I am the luckiest man in the world.
May your Thanksgiving be filled with laughter, love, life, food and wine, children, and the occasional moment of realization that life is a magical and strange concoction that we will never fully grasp, but we can make every effort to let it lead us by the hand like a parent and a child crossing the street for the first time.
Love and Understanding
Monday, November 16, 2009
The snow for sure does something to me. I am not sure yet what exactly, but it is not the same effect as rain or a cloudy cold day. I went walking for about 2 hours in it yesterday down by the lake near our house, and even managed to see a flock of geese (Gander?) heading south...well sort of. I stood on a bridge that arched between two bodies of steel grey water that reflected the white mountains to the west that were solid and quiet and softer with the snow. All the trees had been kissed by the white crystals and it was almost like another world.
Then I noticed the loud bang and thud and scrape and was reminded of the city plows at work further up the hill.
During this walk and time though, i was thinking of all things quiet and loud and how life can change so quickly....one day it is sunny and warm and the next it is 30 and snowy. Kind of like my brain and my world.
I have decided that being in a creative lull is somewhat difficult for me. I don't like being quiet and i have to work on it and trust that it is a time for rest...a down time. When I don't have anything planned I get restless and start to feel insufficient and sort of like a loser. But standing on the bridge in the snow helped me remember to take time and listen and look and enjoy the quiet. Don't rush the melt...because soon enough I'll be super busy again and I'll be on the other side wishing i had time to walk slowly in the snow and see my breath coming out in slow large clouds of warm air puffs.
I went to bed last night on that bridge. My thoughts were like the two bodies of water and I was standing over them calmly taking them in. The mountains were my struggles and the geese were my dreams. I slept soundly and awoke in the sunlit room feeling very rested. Today is Monday.
Love and Understanding
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
woke up feeling a little off today...a little blue...not really sure why, but it may have to do with Monday or possibly a shift in priorities over the past few weeks...
my new studio is in the basement of this new house and it is at garden level which means there is a window that looks out onto the grass level and out to the open space, which is nice. It gets great morning sun and it is quiet and a good place to mediate a bit first thing in the morning. I am feeling like today is a quiet day. A day to not worry too much about what to do or how to do it. It is a day to maybe reflect or think on the now and not worry about the future i suppose.
I can't beleive the holidays are coming up so fast. is that what it is? no... i think I just can't believe how fast time seems to be flying by...at least the weather has been nice these past two weeks since our huge storm here.
I need some inspiration today and I don't quite now how to find it yet...of course, that is usually the way it happens.
so for today, all i can do is show up and go out and keep my ears and eyes open for the inspiring spirit of life.
Love and Understanding
Monday, November 9, 2009
Sometimes you need to be reminded of the simple things in life...Last night I had the pleasure of seeing Calamity Jane....A Facing June Production (Nita's new production company...she's the producer I might add and an amazing one at that). Calamity Jane is a small production that takes place in a great bar/cafe called The Rock n Soul Cafe here in Boulder. It is really a music venue but a perfect setting for this production that takes us on a journey in time with Calamity Jane. The two actors, pictured to the left, (photo credit: Justin Davanzo) use the small stage and the limited props and set to build us a picture of life in the old west. The Musician is Calamity's sidekick from the future, who is helping her clear up some of the possible myths and legends of Calamity Jane and the life she led. Calamity's spirit is larger than life and as you learn about the times she lived in, you realize that she was one of those souls not ready to simply lay down and be content with the normal existence. No matter the level of hard times and hard life, she was her own person, for better or worse. Sometimes during the play, you get the feeling that being a raging drunk prostitute might have actually been fun...later, we see a Calamity who never quite lived the life she really wanted to and as she died she was a broken down spirit that had succumb to the long life of failed efforts to prove herself to no one but her. The music and songs reached am emotional chord in the very end as the analogy of her life was "like a river flowing downstream", which, as you know, is always one of those analogies that I relate to in life. Life just is....and sometimes no matter how hard you try and change it, it is what it is and unless you are happy with it, there is no body else who will be happy for you.
It was great to see a show so raw and up close in such a small setting that didn't make one feel unsafe as an audience member. What I mean is that when you have two capable actors on stage that lead you along a story, you take the journey with a full suspension of disbelief and travel with them through the world they have crafted. that is a rare thing these days and as "grown ups" we need good story tellers to help us remember that we are all still kids waiting for a good bedtime story.
thanks for the great show...
Love and Understanding.
Friday, November 6, 2009
two...the beard...you can't eat for the same problems as above with the drink...
three...chicks dig it.
Being a trained thespian, I look forward to Halloween as it is the one legitimate excuse to dress up and parade around...my favorite part is driving to the party like it is no big deal...nothing like receiving accolades from college kids on the way over..you know you are still cool and haven't lost it yet.
When I put this outfit on, it makes me walk like a lumber jack, talk like one and think like one...a sensitive one at least...hence the straw in the beer. I think i've found a costume that will keep on giving and for only 11.99 the cost of the beard, it is an economical one too....important these days.
ok...so here is a quick update on some things...
i can't go into too many details as of yet, but I have been asked to write a piece once a month on a great blog that I will link you to when it is up...just one more facet and opportunity for the writing which has been a great experience. I am also being interviewed by the Boulder News Team...i think it is students from CU Boulder, about my use of Etsy and my photography, which will take place tomorrow at Topo Ranch where my show is currently hanging...so good press these days!
I also want to acknowledge all of the new readers that have been finding my blog and enjoying it and I am so grateful that you find this a part of you daily ritual...thank you.
for now, I am going to enjoy the rest of my friday morning and coffee and work on some new photos...
have an amazing weekend....
Love and Understanding.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
I took the bus yesterday...for the first time in a long time. I mean, I took the bus to work and back home....let me back up a bit.....
I am back to my morning ritual after a long few weeks of moving, backaches, slight constipation, confusion in life, and the occasional, albeit minor, nervous breakdown...but all of this has made me better and stronger of course and full of more ideas and inspiration. Some of the inspiration is new and some of it is an attempt to rekindle the older ideas, like the one man show....which if all goes per plan, should be up in spring of this year....Nita will for sure be a task master and not let me slack off and make excuses, which i love and need. So back to the bus.....
Working for the city has some perks. Besides the fabulous grey cube and worn out chairs (we actually may get some new ones, which is very exciting indeed) and the too many sweets and donuts, there is an all expense bus pass for the City of Boulder. In a city like Boulder, this is actually a pretty cool thing to have as there are buses everywhere all day...well almost, but more on that later. In the past year or so, i didn't have much need for it as we lived smack in the middle of downtown and could walk and ride our bikes anywhere...now that we are living in the sticks (not really, but there is a large hill and its cold) the bus is a viable option. Also, with Nita teaching and on a different schedule, we both can't possibly plan our days around who has the car when. Enter the bus....
I am 37 years old and grew up in LA....you don't ride the bus there for a number of reasons, some bad, some just because you don't. Here, it is a part of the culture, much like my shoveling of the snow....still feeling lame on that one. I had to sit down and actually research the times and locations and routes of the myriad of stops and starts...the time table was like the worst math word problem I remember having as a kid, but I was able to finally get some understanding of the timing.
The Skip comes by our new place on the 7's (bus lingo for timing)...which is pretty good and the walk to the bus stop is a mere 75 yards give or take a touchdown. I walked out yesterday feeling like a kid on an adventure and stood in the somewhat cool air with anticipation....when the bus came i was the only one on it for a few minutes and managed to strike up a quick conversation by asking the simple question, "so, how do I get to 30th from here?" Well this awesome driver not only answered my question, but for the rest of the ride spoke to me about all the tricks and trades of the routes here...he even told me I could catch a "Deadhead" back to the depot since I work for the city...huh?
A Deadhead is a bus no longer in service with a one way route back to the depot...i could, if i wanted, catch a ride on the Deadhead which would drop me off in front of my work as it so happens to be right next to the bus depot...I think i will reserve this option for the James Bond moment that will for sure appear when it is needed....
I also learned about the airport bus that would only cost me five dollars with my pass....now that is a bargain...
anyhow, the bus....I hopped off my first bus, The Skip, walked a block, and got on the Jump...confusing I know...this took me a few minutes and that dropped me off at Starbucks...well, sort of...but damn if the whole excursion took me 30 minutes...it was so easy...i got a little car sick cause I suck, but i had fun...no stress, no gas, no nasty post environmental guilt...it was great! and on the bus, i observed all sorts of people, which got me thinking about my one man show....this is the inspiration part in case you were wondering....so the bus is a venue for some inspiration and for some relaxation....
now the ride home was a different story and I will keep this brief. After 10PM, the busses only run on the 30's (see the lingo again?) which means I froze my ass off twice while waiting for the two new busses...not including the third bus that I got on by mistake and had to jump off and run back to the other bus that would take me to the final stop of the day....and at that time of night, there is a whole different crowd. Not a good or bad one, but just an interesting slice of society...the late night workers which includes me....mostly men...some quiet, some chatty but all wanting to get home and get warm....
The bus is a bit of a contradiction...on one hand you feel responsible and resourceful and kind of like a kid...on the other hand, more so at night, you feel a bit downtrodden...maybe it was just me, but it felt a bit like the march of the penguins...is that what I want to say? I think...I'll stew on it if you will....
I like the bus. I will take it today again and maybe see the same faces....but I may call Nita for a ride home....
Love and Understanding.
Friday, October 30, 2009
Oh the other mystery is this...so you have a really nice garage with a new floor that has been painted and when you pull in after a day of driving etc. and let the car sit overnight, what happens? ummm...water and mud etc...so now, I have a filthy floor to contend with every time we park in there...so I bought this awesome floor squeegee...and poured a little warm water on the floor and it was pretty clean after about 10 min...but there has to be a better way! I haven't found that one out yet. someone let me know if they already had a brilliant epihany on the matter.
so today I am dressing up as Chevy Chase in Fletch during the airport seen when he comes in as a mechanic...anyone seen that one?? pretty simple really...a one piece Dickie and hopefully some sideburns and mustache....sweet...pictures will ensue
so this morning is a good day...the sun is shining a bit and the snow is melting a bit and it is Friday and the weekend promises to be grand and relaxing....
nothing to earth shattering today...just had to share my shovel wisdom, or lack thereof.
love and understanding!!
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
ok...so I am going to be 38 years old this year...not sure why I awoke thinking about this, but maybe it has something to do with bad backs, moving and waiting for my internet connection to finally arrive...all seem tied to time and age and my excuse for not doing much of anything for the last 10 days or so. Having a bad back is like having a car with no wheels on it...its fun to sit in and turn the stereo on but where the hell can you go? yeah...that's like me with a bad back...
So three weeks ago, in the middle of the night my lower back went into some cosmic spasm which is probably related to the universe telling me i was lacking some sort of support...or something to that effect. I couldn't move or get up to pee even...i just laid there with my wife holding me half on and half off the bed feeling pretty helpless...just trying to breathe. I realized in that moment (as I do a few times a year when i am reminded of this) that we are very, very fragile and it doesn't take much to bring us down...now it takes alot to hold me down, but bringing me down is, well, pretty easy on some level. And this goes for the emotional and mental state as well...
Back to the back...so now, flash forward about a week or so and guess what? I get to move now...with a bad back. And so it goes and continues and the morning air is filled with cussing and moaning and some form of stretching if i can muster it. My wife, the young sweet thing that she is, reminds me to breathe and that things will get better. Yeah...well, where the hell is the cable guy?? Someone tell me that!
My back hurts, I just moved for a whole week and i have no internet!!
Oh and my birthday is coming up and I am going to be 38....well, in March, but soon...and then i'll be 40....WTF? LOL...LMAO (internet slang is the new thing i hear.)
So this morning as the sun rose, and I rolled over in bed and realized that for the first time in 3 weeks, my back didn't hurt, and that I didn't have to get up and coordinate moving anything, or swapping cars, or making appointments for utilities, and that I would be saved by the wizard himself...the man behind the curtain...the cable guy....(they are so under appreciated)...my day suddenly felt a little bit lighter. My coffee was warmer and sweeter, my toast was perfect and my OJ was just right...I realized that today, life would continue on its way with me in tow and on October 27th, 2009, I was still only 37 years old with plenty of days left to play before the ripe old age of 38....
for now, i'll be down in my studio, meditating in the internet sanctum of belonging and purpose.
Love and Understanding
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
i was standing in my room last night and just had a feeling of not wanting to ever have any doubts or negative and fearful thoughts ever again...this does not mean that at times i wouldn't feel nervous and anxious, which is completely different than fearful and doubtful...nervous and anxious is what i feel before i go on stage and it makes me feel alive and ready for anything. Fear is what I feel when I stand on the edge of a mountain and it paralyzes me...i don't want to live in fear and doubt....(ok, so I may have to get up that mountain sooner or later and stand on the edge to prove this whole theory, but give me a little time!)
I think as children, if we imagine it possible then it should be something that just happens...or we just think that things are the way they are, not knowing that our parents have built in automatic trust so that we are taken care of...just like adults as we trust the universe to be our parents. It is the energy of knowing things will be ok and the energy of imagining and making things happen no matter what. As a child there was no limit to what we could do...if all we had were sticks and stones, we'd make them into something and have fun....think of all the games we would come up with...some simple, some complicated, but all were just part of the daily experience.
The last few weeks there have been so many amazing things coming together that i have to attribute it to simply believing...nothing more. I believe that we can live the life we want anytime we want. it is just a matter of making that decision. Truthfully, as I am realizing this, I also realize that I still don't have the most specific overall vision, but I am getting better at the visions on a daily basis and looking ahead a few months...i am not sure if looking ahead more than that is the right process as you need to be open for change and the ability to move and adapt, but making the decision to do so and being agile and purposeful is the key.
I feel like today i could write for hours and share 100's of anecdotes in the past month even that would illustrate this process...but i have things to do this morning that continue to move me forward. But, i will share one..a big one....one of the biggest.
It all started with Prairie Dogs. Nita and I spent hours on our road bikes this summer and there was one particular bike path that I loved to ride down because there were literally hundreds of chirping prairie dogs standing near their holes and watching us ride by. Sometimes they would waddle across the path tempting the front wheels of our bikes and other times they would just sit there eating and staring at us...i used to joke that when they stood up they looked like little bears.
Then one day Nita was on a ride by herself in the mountains and a black bear ran across the road in front of her...we laughed a bit, after marveling at the fact that she was so close to a bear, and I said, "gee, it seems like the bear is your totem, which must mean the prairie dog is mine." So the rest of the summer, whenever riding down that path, i would say hi to my totems and generally salute them with my own version of prairie dog speak. I even became obsessed with the YouTube Dramatic Prairie Dog and laughed my head off when watching it.
Flash forward a bit as I am working hard on getting another photo show up and running. I had been courting a cool clothing shop named Topo Ranch. For about 1 year I had occasionally gone in and talked to them about putting up work and having a show. Well, finally the time was right and I was able to meet with the owner and a show was put in the works. Now I had seen their sign and logo many times and not thought twice until Alex, the owner, sent me the logo on email so I could include it in a postcard announcing the show...and then WHAM...there it was....right in front of me....staring at me in the face....
My Totem!!! The Topo Ranch logo is a prarie dog standing up with wings...I will let this sink in....
I couldn't believe it...right there the whole time...my totem...I couldn't believe it...i laughed and exclaimed to Nita that it all made sense! It gets better though....Alex's family decedents were members of the Donnor Party and managed to not only survive, but they started a ranch in Central California that was over run with prairie dogs...so to honor his family, Alex used the spanish word Topo, for prairie dog, and gave it wings so his dream of owning and having these stores would take off....ok...so multiple prairie dog totems at work here...and now i must let you go as I have truly written a short story...but this is the thing....
At first I thought having a prairie dog for a totem was silly and not as cool as the bear....now i realize...flying prairie dogs are way cooler than sleeping bears....
Love and understanding!
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
ok...so I read a great article last night that discussed how artists who complain or state that they need new and better equipment (primarily photographers) should take a step back and think about it...I think it was Ansel Adams who said, "the most important part of the camera is the 12 inches behind it..." ok..so there it is...the gauntlet has been thrown down. In this day and age, it seems that everything is making it easier to rely on technology for skill...and to use an excuse that says, if only i had the "right" or "better" equipment my photos would be better. nope. this is the part i like. I am paraphrasing some of this but it goes something like this.
A photo is a photo no matter what camera you use...it is the composition and the shape and the light that matters...looking back amongst photographers who were using box cameras in the early days...they didn't have digital zoom lenses and photoshop, they relied on their eye and their vision of what made a good picture...now it is true that having the right equipment can help a good photographer achieve the desired results faster, but good equipment does not a good photographer make. Why am I saying this? because as I journey down the road of photography, i sometimes get caught up in the guy next to me who has the huge camera and brand new lens and bla bla...but i realize...that is not the key.
The other day i was walking around with my Diana camera...which is a simple plastic camera with no focus ring, no zoom, no F stop..nothing...it is basically a contraption that lets light in by holding down a trigger and you control how long that is held down. In using it I realized that I cannot really control what the camera is going to do with the light and focus etc, but i can control what I wanted to try and capture...the fun thing about this camera and film is you never know what you'll get till it is developed...it is kind of like going back in time and to think the masters who took great pictures back then could shoot without any immediate output to help them figure out if it was right or not, is awesome...ok, so that brings me back to the topic....the vision of the artist is more important than the equipment. As I get ready to hang another show and spend quality and close up time with many of my pictures as I matte them, i start to see my vision more clearly...they are no longer just a snapshot on the computer, but a piece of art that I have created. They are small in size, but within i start to see the camera in my head and how it works...I see the world through a lens differently than anyone else...and i love that about photography...each photographer has a unique way of looking at the world. Do i still want a sweet bitchin camera? sure...will it change the way I see things? no....this is the key...mastering the simple tools is the thing to do because no matter how big your paintbrush, it won't help you paint better....here i go talking about size again.. oh well...
i felt relieved when I returned home last night after work having read the article that praised the artist, not the equipment....i like that.
Love and Understanding.
Monday, October 5, 2009
yep...that is what last week and this week and most of last month and most of next month and...you get my drift...feel like...and that is exactly what i love about it. For a bit of time i started thinking that maybe I should go back to school for something. maybe photography for example...then i started thinking...why don't i just create my own curriculum? Now this is not to say that I hate school and think it is a bad idea...no..as a matter of fact, i am very excited to take some very specific classes in the near future, but i have managed to create my own classes...ok...i don't know if I created them, but I go to them every day...Lately the classes have been really good...like shooting a wedding for 6 hours on Saturday...my teacher was awesome and holy crap did i learn alot...mostly that I need to get more serious about my equipment and start working towards the bigger picture of what I need and desire for tools of the trade. Not to mention that my lack of lighting knowledge is staggering and that I need to make sure to take THAT class...but i also learned that I know more than i thought about myself and photography....i somehow forget sometimes that I love to look through the lens and that in doing so, i lose complete sense of time. the first 5 hours went by so fast that I had no idea i hadn't drank a single cup of water or eaten anything....not so great later on for me, but what the heck? All this learning is conducive to introspection and looking at things from a different angle....trying to assess the things i need to do to move forward and also realizing that creating opportunities in the school of life is one of the best ways to get an education...I have to keep thinking this way...
don't take class, make class....it is so much more fun that way....
Love and Understanding
Friday, October 2, 2009
tomorrow i make my debut as a wedding photographer...well...at least as an assistant to my own wedding photographer who is awesome for letting me learn with her....Beth, you are a superstar!
so here are a few things i need to say.
I promise I won't let you down. I promise to shut up and listen and learn. I promise to ask questions when I need to. I promise to not fuck up too bad. I promise to try my best. I promise to laugh and have fun. I promise to not get drunk. I promise to make you look good. I promise to not break your camera. I promise to not swear all the time. I promise to meet you on time. I promise to not get too emotional during the ceremony. I promise to not take too many pictures. I promise to kick some ass. I promise to not say inappropriate things to the guests. I promise to spread joy and love except when using the port o potty. I promise to work harder than i have to. I promise that I will eat anything they put in front of me. I promise to not promise too many more things....
so as I said on my Facebook feed...today i feel like i am water skiing behind a cruise ship...like my arms might be pulled off...like the wake is too big to surmount, like the boat is going just fast enough to keep the sharks away...like if i fall in, i am done for...like i wish i could just get on deck and eat a ton of food with all the fat people.
yep..that is what i feel like today...so there....
love and understanding
Thursday, October 1, 2009
i often think about my intentions these days...what are they? how do they affect my life and those around me? it seems so important to concentrate on our intention every day even if it feels like a small moment of concentration...more like acknowledgment of intention. sometimes it feels like an attitude adjustment that just reminds us to look up and forward.
these days, with winter fast approaching and the days getting shorter, it is easy for me to slip into a bit of a fog and forget about intentions, but this year, I am focusing on that practice and working towards willing things to work. there are so may analogies out there regarding intentions...one or two come to mind that I will share...
the first was told to me by a mentor of sorts a few years ago...she is a teacher i had that helped me see the power of intention...her analogy was simple...
"Waiting for your ship to come in....in this life you must send out hundreds of ships into the universe before one will return. This is the idea behind having a ship come in. How many ships are lost at sea and never return? How many find another port and decide it is better than the last? How many are caught in storms and swallowed up? You see the point here I am making...in order for one ship to make it back, the odds must be stacked and the intentions must be clear. By sending many, for sure, one will return."
ok...so my analogy that I came up with just now before I remembered hers is well, sort of silly but kind of true...I am not a tennis player by any means, but suddenly I thought of intentions as a tennis match...hitting the ball and sending it across the net with the intention of it going to a certain spot on the court and each time it gets returned you must try again...sometimes the ball will get past you...many times you will hit the ball as hard as you can, but only after a great effort and lots of focus and intention does the game come to a conclusion and hopefully the intention of piling up enough points to win has worked and the game is yours....
I suppose you could add this to many endeavors which is key....i often have to come up with tangible analogies to succeed in the not so tangible world of art and soul...like my bike riding stories...or boxing perhaps...or simply getting up in the morning....they all have to do with an energetic notion...a theme of purpose and pointed direction....
to be clear....this is not to achieve greatness in one day, it is merely to stay on the track of greatness...to stay true to our daily work as people, artists, athletes, families and souls. Our universe is a sounding board for intentions and by sending them out, they will respond accordingly.
Love and Understanding.
Monday, September 28, 2009
What a day. Let's just say in a good way...i think i had way to much coffee for starters, but what the heck...I feel like there are so many good things going on that I don't know where to start...so i won't...but i will say that there is a directional force at work that is getting more powerful each day. I have just booked my third photo show which will be up mid October and I am beginning to work on a more regular basis with commercial based photo shoots around town...all of which are paying gigs...so that is a huge step in the right direction..getting paid to do what I love. I look back at this year and marvel at the huge things that have happened...ummm...getting married to my amazing wife? that would be enough to last and not have to do or plan anything for a whole year...but life goes forward and in that year, there have been shows, and books and writing and life...but all of it in the best vein of living large and pursuing the things that make one happy....there is so much for me to be thankful for that I really have to make a mental note to slow down and take things in...we watched a small sliver of the 3000 wedding photos taken by our amazing photographer, Beth Sanders, and while watching it all came flooding back..the amazing moment in time we had this summer with our families and friends and the simplicity of what is really important...so on a day where i feel fairly anxious with the many things to complete before some deadlines, i also feel very grateful and very much in love and extremely happy to have the life i do...I sometimes feel like a living experiment...and right now, the experiment is working....
love and understanding
Friday, September 25, 2009
This could not be more fitting...not that a bad storm is brewng, but a good storm..i feel it in the air..things are building and culminating and, well, brewing..like the clouds in this shot. A quiet storm of immense creative proportion that is building and getting ready to release torrents of creative energy and thunder and lightning...I feel like every day is moving towards a greater purpose of my creative existence and ability...things are opening up for me to learn, and practice and to feel like I deserve them and when I look back it is all part of the practice....
As Yoda once said...
"Do not try....Do."
"Just Do It"
or ...Steve Jobs
"One cannot connect the dots looking forward, only backward"
ok...so that last one is just one of my favorites...
but still...it is in the doing..the little things each day..the process of
...I am going to do.
Love and Understanding.
Thursday, September 24, 2009
so last night i didn't dream...at least i can't remember my dreams...i often wonder what that is about. Am I not paying attention in the morning or when i am sleeping? I do remember i had a dream last week where i was a spy of some sort. very James Bondish, but i can't go much past that...sometimes when i see my pictures i feel like i was in a dream state when i took them, because it takes me back to a place in time that is gone. I can remember the moment, the place, the time...it is like a memory marker and i love that about pictures. i'd have to say, that may be the best thing about pictures...preserving the moment and the memories so you know they weren't dreams. time just seems to slide by but with the pictures it is well kept.
i am lately on a path of great intention that has invoked many dreams of my life and as I focus on the intention things begin to take shape and happen. each day is an excercise in turning dreams to reality and making sure that I am capturing the moments, however small they may appear to be on the outside, they are huge moments with great significance in the grand scheme. they are the kind of moments one can look back on and say, "wow, that really made something happen", and even though it may have taken some time, they are the seeds of moments growing into the full tree, slowly and surely, until one day it seems like there is suddenly a tree in the yard, but the memory with each stage of that tree is connected to all the care and time it took to grow.
I often think about trees and how the perspective is so subtle over so many years. As children, most trees seem huge, and some are, but the realization that we are both growing to the point that we meet in the middle is quite amazing. I first noticed this back home in Santa Monica when I noticed how big the trees had actually gotten on a particular street, but remembering as a kid, they had always seemed big. The truth is, we both had watched each other grow and the reality is that the trees were not big at all, but my perspective as a child couldn't understand that. Now, suddenly, those trees ARE big...i know this as an adult, because I understand the perspective of their size, but it took 35 years to get that big...always growing and changing, but in small ways unseen to a child and even to an adult...i suppose it is like the dreams we have in life...always reaching for them like the roots of trees, always changing, always losing leaves and coming back to life, always having to be watered and tended to, and always blowing in the wind...and then one day, the dream is reality and bigger than you dreamed, but only because you dreamed it.
Love and Understanding
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
yesterday and today reminded me that winter is very close...very very close...it snowed above 8000 feet and it has been colder...they say that we still have some warm days left, but they are numbered...I love it, but i also feel a bit sad as the long days come to a close. I am inspired to be cozy and hunker down and work inside...and for things to slow down a bit as they usually do in the winter. Life is moving along in so many ways and we are all trying to make sense of things as we go on a daily basis. It is good to have patience and to look at all options and to think of all possibilities before making drastic changes or decisions. I think winter is good for this kind of things..it is a time to hibernate and look at things differently. An excuse to stay inside a bit...that being said, i am going to freeze my butt off riding to work!!! so there.
Summer has been amazing....let's get ready for the winter.
Love and Understanding
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
German lesson of the day:
N. Pleasure taken in doing what one does best.
ok so here it is...the best example that comes to mind for me are Cheetahs. Cheetahs are made for running fast and hunting...that is what they do. When they are doing it they are experiencing der Funktionlust....ja. Some say that when animals are in der Funktionlust they are actually smiling...and happy and the endorphins are flowing freely.
right now I am experiencing it too...although I wasn't running...or hunting. I was taking photos for a commercial photo shoot...something that is fairly new to me in the grand scheme of things, but in doing it I realize that I was in miene Funkionlust. Two hours went by like minutes and i wanted to keep going...i could have done it all day...now I can hardly sit still....tap tap tap...i think that we all have it, but it takes time to find out what the true meaning is for each of us.
There are of course many things I enjoy that make me happy and that I am good at, but taking pictures for me is maybe the only thing besides acting where I feel naturally in my element and nothing else matters...they seem very easy and everything just clicks....
so today i am en meine Funktionlust and I hope you are too.
Love and Understanding.
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Saturday, September 12, 2009
sometimes it is hard to sit and write. sometimes i want to say to much. sometimes i don't know what to say. sometimes i wish i had the perfect idea. sometimes i wish i didn't have any at all. sometimes i think i should quit. sometimes i think life is all a big play. sometimes i miss my dog. sometimes i sleep in late. sometimes things don't go the way they should. sometimes things happen for a reason. sometimes i lose my phone. sometimes i feel tired. sometimes i eat Chipotle. sometimes my back hurts. sometimes i dance naked. sometimes my hair gets too long. sometimes i don't know what to do. sometimes i have too much to do. sometimes i get scared. sometimes i get happy. sometimes i cry. sometimes i get really angry. sometimes i can't see straight. sometimes i drink too much. sometimes i don't drink enough. sometimes i cook. sometimes i read. sometimes i fly on airplanes. sometimes i forget things. sometimes i say stupid things. sometimes i am patient. sometimes i laugh. sometimes i don't understand what just happened. sometimes i dream impossible things. sometimes my dreams come true. sometimes i wonder. sometimes i smile. sometimes i frown. sometimes i see things no one else saw. sometimes i fall down. sometimes i get up. sometimes i ride my bike. sometimes i curse my legs. sometimes i smell the flowers. sometimes i squish a bug. sometimes i can't remember. sometimes i forgive. sometimes i make music. sometimes i look at the moon. sometimes i freak out. sometimes i wish i could fly. sometimes i think i heard something. sometimes i want more. sometimes i am completely lost.
all the time i am loved.
love and understanding.
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
I will now be speaking the secret code of the spontaneous combustible artistic artistry i like to call Secret Spontaneous Combustible Artist Speak...if this offends those who are not willing to think outside the box because they are to wrapped up in the world of mediocrity and offensive oppressive behavior and cow like actions...good...that means even though this makes no sense to them they still feel as if they know what it is I am saying and therefore they pretend to have power over those around who actually do speak the secret language and therefore in the eyes of the moronic king, they feel powerful and are paid accordingly and so the language has worked as it singles out and shines the light on those that are truly challenged and for this I practice great patience and utter and mimic the moronic language of the great wizard behind the curtain. The curtain that is drenched in gasoline and waiting for it to be lit by those who know what flammable ideas and thoughts can create and do in a world that is rank with the waste and disease of those who can't see because they are so lazy and filthy with complacency that they simply don't hear or can't walk without uttering a stream of obscene and grotesque lard like statements that drip and drop into the cesspool of the grey world they rule. Kind of like orcs, but not as smart. The blessed spelling bee that rules the world and makes all things equal has come to light and the posturing and pretending will not be a part of the game any longer. this is the world that is sick with a cancer that has run itself for far too long and the sad part is there is no cure except a quarantine of the weak and simple minded soldiers doing the work of the bland wizard who reads the back of a cereal box in the morning and thinks he is king.
I am the walrus.
Monday, August 31, 2009
So last night Nita and I saw Julie and Julia, which I was excited to see after reading Julia Childs book "My Life in France", which chronicles the beginning of her cooking career and her personal life with Paul Childs while they lived in Europe, and her journey to creating the now famous cookbook, and it was as inspiring as I thought. First, the portrayal of Julia Childs by Meryl Streep is incredible. She embodies the spirit and mannerisms perfectly. After reading the book, you really get a sense of her constant positive outlook on life and this for sure comes across in the movie, but more importantly, the cross over between Julia and the modern story that is going on with Julie is equally inspiring in its own way. For those who don't know the whole story, basically Julie sets out to write a blog about cooking all of Julia Childs recipes, all 525 of them, in 365 days. During the story we see the trying times of this challenge and how difficult something like this could be, but more importantly, we see two great examples of people who took charge of their life, but following through and not letting things stand in the way...this is the main part that I am inspired by....Julia Child sat with Paul when she was age 37 and asked herself, "What should I do?" I relate to this as I am not only the same age, but I have that same discussion with myself on a daily basis...except mine often involves some sort of cuss word...
Now, not that the decision is easy, but once it is made, that is the key...to follow through, no matter the challenges or how many are against it...the modern day story of Julie, who funny enough, has a government job ( sound familiar?) is great to watch as she seemingly comes up with this crazy idea but as she follows her journey and realizes her true dreams come from the challenge she finally understands what her life is meant to be.
Of course, all of this has a Hollywood spin, but the reality for both is still true, and if you read the book, you will for sure see how Julia Childs beat all the odds and constantly persevered in her pursuit of doing what she loved....
I also loved watching Stanley Tucci, the adoring and supportive other half...who was always there for Julia even though for him at times, his life felt a bit dreary...he also had a government job, but of course watching him reminded me of another one of my most favorite movies...Big Night...all of this is based around the love of food and wine and after we saw the movie last night, I was not only inspired to follow through, but I was damn hungry...so we went and had a great dinner at the local pub...The Hungry Toad...I had London Broil and a great glass of wine and we talked of all things present and future...
These are the kind of stories i love to read about and know they are true...it brings me back to what is important and gets the blood flowing and shows us that it is never too late to do what we want, or to at least try...I think it also reminds us that we CANNOT do it alone...we all need our support system...no matter who or what, but we need that too. And to remember, much like I wrote about in my book...(plug plug) about Vincent Van Gogh...here again we see the years it takes to make it...Julia Childs spent 8 years writing this book and more cooking before she became Julia Childs as we know her...And the modern day Julie, probably spent the majority of her younger years trying to figure out how to be a writer...i don't know as much about her, but it does mention that she wrote a novel in the movie and has been trying for some time...point is...to remember that it does not just happen and all the little things add up...So for me, this Monday...which is partly cloudy and so so...i need to remember this...
Today I am going to take down my second photography show in a few hours and at first I was a little bummed, but now I am excited to start another show and to make some things happen....this is not an overnight effort...this is a journey into the wilderness....
so remember to pack all the essentials and bring your favorite person or thing with you so when you break down, they can help you laugh and see that all things will work out just fine.
Go see this movie...at least it will make you hungry if not totally inspired...
Love and Understanding.
Thursday, August 27, 2009
some mornings I just don't know where to start....or how...well, mostly i know how...a good cup of coffee...but where...that is still sometimes the hard part. So i usually sit and sip and avoid and then find myself starting here, which feels pretty good in the end. At least when I start here i can acknowledge that I don't know where to start and that makes me feel a little better most of the time. I can't believe summer is virtually done and that September is right around the corner....I mean what the Efff? I started noticing little things like a few leaves not looking so green and once and a while the smell of fall is in the air...it's the time of year to reflect a bit and to also wonder what is in store for winter...
who the heck knows? yes, i have plans, but who knows how they will pan out...(sip of coffee...pause...another sip)
I am on a creative marketing campaign as of late and that has been my daily push...sending a photo or two to contests, sending a portfolio to a local venue in Boulder, researching grants, looking for photo opportunities, staring at photos on my desk and not knowing what to do with them, designing more publicity packs to pass around, staring blankly...all part of the deal i suppose. i often reflect on the strange path that life takes us on and how sometimes in doing things there is just no way to tell if it is the right thing, or where it will lead, so you just go that way and see, but that is not easy...it is actually quite disconcerting at times because if you let your mind go it will (coffee) tell you and remind you that this is not logical...that you should worry about the real things in life like a job and bills and responsible items...
ok, fine, so it is...yes...but then I remember that as the path winds and goes up and goes down, there are some days that it just makes sense and some days it doesn't.
I had a bike ride on Saturday and I swear i wanted to quit riding my bike, but i couldn't and didn't...and then on Sunday i rode and I rode better and stronger than I had in a while...and i forgot about quitting...i was only remembering how good it felt to be strong and to have the wind in my hair and to hear the sound of my breathing. And as usual i had a moment of hilarious reflection regarding my dramatic day before and i smiled all the way down the mountain....so there...
maybe another book title..."Smiling Down the Mountain"
i'm full of them these days.
Love and Understanding
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Artist: Will work for quality of life.
I feel like that would be a good sign to have on the side of the road...don't you wish we could choose between money and quality of life? I mean, for me, a no brainer....of course the quality of life would have to have an endless supply of special artist grants that allow us to have quality of life, but the grants come from places that have far too much money anyway and those who chose quality of life are better off using the money doing their passion and enjoying life...imagine how many people you know who are tied into a job they don't like that actually have a passion, but are too afraid to follow it 100% because they need the money...I think the world would for sure be a better place. People would be happier, they'd be having more fun, more relaxed, more love in general, and there would be a lot less health issues...so that is the solution for health care i think...give the money to artists first so they can have more fun and feel better about things and then from there, they can spread their joy to sick people who will be better and smile more and laugh, and then the world will last longer because people will drive less since they'll be busy creating, and then the global warming issue will be fixed, and then there will be nicer weather which makes people happier, and less natural disasters, which will ultimately save money that will go to the artists, and then cities will be built as art not as function, and poor people won't feel so poor, and rich people will not feel so threatened, and we can feel safe on airplanes again and won't have to pay for a blanket, and our kids will get to go to art schools and not take the SAT to prove they are smart, but they'll get to do whatever they want...music, paint, write, etc, and our dogs will not be so dysfunctional due to their dysfunctional owners who make them crazy, and cats...well they'll stay the same, and theater will take the place of movie theaters and 6 week vacations will be mandatory.
Love and Understanding