12 March 2011

Less than rhapsodic in blue

It's true, I was less than rhapped with my effort this week for Laura's weekly challenge (which is why I'm only posting it now, although I finished it days ago). But, in the interest of learning a more Zen attitude to my artwork, I've decided to post it anyway.

This piece is in the back of my journal. The fact that I started it there shows how confident I was not feeling about this artistic challenge!  Perhaps, next time I'm not feeling confident, I should start at the front of my art journal anyway [soft smile].

"Blue By You" (click to enlarge).
I am listening to music as I write today (as I usually do).  This week Norah Jones is singing "The Grass is Blue" and I am thinking, as she sings, of the backwards world we're living in these days.

Last night I watched the earth become sea in Japan.  It seems not that long ago I was sitting waiting and watching the waters rise — touching base with friends and family in Queensland, Australia.  And of course, in Christchurch, New Zealand (just across the pond from Tasmania), the earth beneath their feet betrayed them.  Norah sings in agreement from my speakers:
"Rivers flow backwards,
Valleys are high.
Mountains are level,
Truth is a lie."
"How much can a heart
and a troubled mind take?
Where is that fine line
before it all breaks?"
No wonder some of us are feeling blue... even those of us who have only seen these events unfold from the comfort and safety of our living rooms.  My heart caught in my throat last night as I saw the tidal waves washing across the land and realised there were people in there too. I had to stop watching the coverage — instead sending out email messages to those I knew in the area and waiting to hear back from them.

So what do we do with these feelings of sadness — at times overwhelming?  We do what we can, from a practical standpoint, and then –I believe– we make the time to stop, reflect on the impermanence of life in general, and then ask ourselves:
"What am I doing with this life of mine?"
"Am I making the world a better place, for my part in it?"
And these are questions, of course, that we should continue to ask ourselves... ever changing, growing, and becoming the Best we can be.  While recognising (and this is vitally important) that – on some days – our Best may seem more or less than we usually 'expect' from ourselves, and that's okay too.

So, if all I am able to do on this day is bring joy to one person by showing them their previously untapped artistic creativity, I will do it with Passion... with Love... and with Heart & Soul.

And, contrary to the lyrics of the song, I will always know in my heart that – even when it is beauty restricted to a 3.5" square canvas – Truth will always be Truth. So I will follow my heart, be True to my Self and live that Truth without compromise... for as long as I have to live it.

What does tragedy remind us?  What does all this death and destruction have to tell us?  Paradoxically, it tells us about Life.  It reminds us that we are safe and that Life is precious and full of meaning. Reminded of Living True, I photographed these trees at the meditation Centre I was at this time last week.

(Click to enlarge.)
I found myself looking up often during the course.  The trees grew so strong and tall in that beautiful place (another place of truth: of Dhamma).  I didn't speak for the duration of the course (that was easy).  I also didn't draw (that was very hard!).  But when I returned, I remembered watching the sunrise touch the tree tops early one morning at the Centre, and almost feeling the push of those trees to reach back to the sun.

"Tall and True" (click to enlarge).

Stand Tall and Live True!
Live with Courage and Zeal and Compassion!

In other news, the Australian Calligraphy Society's book, WordsWork, is now available from John Neal Books.  (The artists are published alphabetically, but I like to think my ZIA calligraphy is on page one three times over – page 111. [smiles])


  1. I think you should VERY confident with this piece! The shading you did with the blue is beautiful!

  2. love the concept and outcome ! your "blue" is gorgeous!also beautiful"hair"work,soft delicate composition on the zt tile!!

  3. The blue one is simple but strong. Your 'Tall and True' is beautiful. I appreciate art that expresses feelings and thoughts like that. Thank you for sharing your heart.

  4. Your blue is so rich. It just has a depth to it that I really love!

  5. Thanks for this, Kit.

  6. I really love them both! The blue is fabulous and the tall and true is too.

  7. I love the fabulous boldness of it!
    'Tall and true' is lovely too. The grayness of the middle with the strong light and dark on either side is very striking.

  8. <3 The blue one is to die for! Gorgeous!!!! I love it! :) The other one is beautiful too!!

  9. Kit,
    Your words, thoughts and sharing of this "Less than rhapsodic in blue" posing was so poignant. You put meaning to my emotions, having observed so much of the tragic events of the Japanese these past few days. Our friends in Kagoshima, Kyoto and Northern Toyko are fine, a blessing, but still such a loss for the people of the Country.

    Thank you for your art, your music, your heart!

    Debbie Ripley

  10. Kit, Your tiles are both beautiful, and once again your words are heartfelt. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and life with us! Sue

  11. This is GORGEOUS Kit!

  12. ooooh, drool...I like :) put that one in your portfolio for me hehe...

  13. PS. Both of them...ho hum...too much study is making Jill a dull girl.

  14. Super fabulous Kit, I am sitting amongst some beautiful gum trees at the Bridport Caravan Park and breathing in the freshness after last nights rain. Reading your post, enjoying your peaceful Zentangles and Norah Jones' music adds to the relaxation. Thank you!

  15. Your Tall and True artwork is stunning. So strong and uplifting.

  16. Greetings from South Africa! Thank you for giving us sooooo much to reflect on and to be grateful for our own lives. My heartfelt thoughts go out to the survivors in Japan and Christchurch to now pick up the pieces from this devastation and live on. Sue Williams

  17. Kit, love your share on your blue piece. It's all about stretching our creative selves, right? Your tall and true is wonderful, I can feel the strength and reaching of those wonderful trees you described. With all that is going on now a days I value the creative respit from the chaos of the world today that you help us experience. Not an escape, just a lovely, thoughtful diversion.

  18. we, in hawaii, are still touched by all that's happened in japan as we have a very large japanese community. the devastation is just appalling. yet, what you say is so true to heart. all this reminds us of how important it is to cherish life and to simply be.

    btw, i happen to love your blue piece. so there. :P

  19. excellent articles, useful for me. keep writing and happy blogging.

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