Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Destroying the old.  
Making new.

Because I really dig fire and get to experience it often since I've moved to Providence, I am looking forward to enjoying NYE with friends, outdoors...around a fire pit. Stoked! Just figuring out my attire because it's dropping to 20 degrees tonight.

Happy New Year everyone!!  

(photos taken earlier of Waterfire, the Iron Pour, and a friend's backyard)

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

I enjoy being able to see an expanse of sky from my house.  This was taken Sunday morning from my living room.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Yesterday, I discovered the 2009 award-winning animation, "Mary and Max" on Netflix streaming.  It's kind of brilliant.  Beautifully done.  Funny.  Sad.  A black comedy in claymation and not meant for children.  The film so entranced me that I'm watching it again this evening.  Here are some shots I took of the film on my laptop screen.  Gorgeous stuff.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

It's been a while...months, since I've posted.

August and September left me financially strapped.  I was in the middle of a lengthy hiring process for a new job, my temp job wasn't paying the bills and I had maxed out my two credit cards with frivolities such as food and gas.  I became acutely aware of how frightened I was, although I tried really hard not to have it consume my days.

In this, I also wondered where the blog was headed.

I missed blogging.

I began my new position at the end of September and it took me until this month to get caught up on my bills.  As of today, I am no longer behind in my payments. The new position covers my monthly expenses will a little left over to enjoy a nice dinner out with friends once a week.

Solstice and the holidays are upon us.  This year, maybe due to the stress of the last 12 months, I've relished this season.  December came and I immediately put my little feather tree in my painting studio. A week later, I had the wonderful smell of evergreen in my living room with my green tree.

I don't know what next year holds but there has been a building excitement deep within me.  I sense changes.

Life is an adventure, isn't it?

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

I was watching a movie on Netflix and feeling out of sorts.  Maybe it because I talked myself out of going to the gym after work.  Or maybe something else.  I turned off the movie and decided to listen to music and do a blog entry instead.  And, make a gin and tonic.  Because you know, priorities.

The passing of Robin Williams has hit me hard.  It is only the second time that someone with celebrity status has died and I've been teary.  The first was a few months ago with Maya Angelou.  

As some of you know, I have no use for the concept of celebrity:  the character of a person always trumps fame and popularity.  But even though I knew Williams because of his movies and Angelou by her writings,  I was always more impressed by their strength of character.  And for me, that is what made them worth paying attention to.  

I don't believe that Robin Williams' death was tragic.  Yes, it is a loss for us, but I believe it was his time to explore the next phase of his journey.  The man, this wonderfully irreverent being, was filled with intelligence that was tempered by love and kindness.  I do believe that depression could have played a part but am highly cynical of our culture when it speaks of depression.  I believe in life experiences and some of them are simply different.  I believe in the few who are here on earth and are 50 years ahead of their time.   They hold a brilliant light which is a combination of intelligence and empathy...greater than a compassionate heart. With that, in addition to joy and sadness, there is an isolation that is deeply felt and is carried.  It matters not how many loving people surround the person.  They will feel like an alien at times.  

Human experience is such that we simultaneously all fit and don't fit.  We are all the same and all unique.  We can all (if we allow ourselves) feel deep isolation.  It is the human condition.

Within that, there are a few who feel it more acutely than others.   And I abhor the swarms of voices that clamor "depression, depression, depression".   Americans are so reactive and honestly, most times it makes my head want to explode.   I believe there are many reasons for depression, one which is the by product of being born ahead of your time.  Hence, sometimes treating the depression is simply putting a bandaid - a quick temporary fix but it does not do much to alleviate the suffering of who immerse themselves in our world and live extraordinary lives. 

We are quick to grasp at solutions in a futile attempt to make sense of life and sometimes, things just are what they are.  In our world, our universe, there are more questions than answers.  And guess what?  That really is okay.

Everyone life is different.  There is not one ideal path.  We all have our wounds, our scars, our demons.  And we all have our journey, specific to each one of us.  

from Dead Poet's Society (the first Robin Williams film that branded its mark upon me):

John Keating: Now we all have a great need for acceptance, but you must trust that your beliefs are unique, your own, even though others may think them odd or unpopular, even though the herd may go, [imitating a goat"that's baaaaad." Robert Frost said, "Two roads diverged in the wood and I, I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference."

And this...definitely this:

"We don't read and write poetry because it's cute. We read and write poetry because we are members of the human race. And the human race is filled with passion. And medicine, law, business, engineering, these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for. To quote from Whitman, "O me! O life!... of the questions of these recurring; of the endless trains of the faithless... of cities filled with the foolish; what good amid these, O me, O life?" Answer. That you are here - that life exists, and identity; that the powerful play goes on and you may contribute a verse. That the powerful play *goes on* and you may contribute a verse. What will your verse be?"

(photo taken in June 2007 in NYC)

Monday, August 04, 2014

Cleaned 6 weeks of dried oil paint off my palette in preparation for tomorrow (baby steps) and now am settled in to rewatch "The Tales of the City" on Hulu Plus. I loved the books and periodically reread them. But am I the only one that thinks the televised version smacks of "Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman"? I will say that Olympia Dukakis was the perfect Anna Madrigal.

This link is for a 2014 Guardian article on Maupin talking about "Tales of the City".

Sunday, August 03, 2014

Another from Point Judith.

We have had a gorgeous summer thus far.  Considering the last two years offered months of massive humidity, which I loathe, this summer has felt like August in Seattle.  It has been mostly dry, a very frequent breeze which added to my comfort, and only a few uncomfortably humid days.

This weekend, which also thrilled me, a grey, cloudy weekend was forecasted.  I like the change.  And I love the ocean on grey, wet days.  It's an entirely different energy and for me, just as needed.

Yesterday evening I decided to drive down to Point Judith.  As I'm heading into this little town I notice people clamming in the marsh and had to throw my car in reverse to stop and enjoy the sight.  

I like how colors seem to glow on grey wet days.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Omg. It's almost the end of July and the summer is flying fast. Weekends are booking up and although I'm enjoying myself, I want summer to extend the season for another 3 or 4 months. There is lots I want to do and I fear there isn't enough time. 

(photo taken in Westport MA last Friday)

Saturday, July 19, 2014

It's been such a busy time, and I've realized that a big part of that is exhaustion.  Yes, I have much going on, but I realized that I've become overwhelmingly tired.  The stress of not being a fulltime employee with benefits, as well as a mattress that has bit the dust has led to major sleep dep.

In this, I attempt to do what I can to rejuvenate myself.  Last Saturday I spent a day in Provincetown with friends.  It was glorious, although doing Ptown as a day trip is always difficult for me.  I always want to being able to at least spend one night so I can wander the beach and then Commercial St at night without worrying about driving home in the middle of the night or to get up early to wander down to the water as the sun rises and the air is quiet.  But, a day trip is better than no trip.

And I did even manage to capture the super full moon.

And yesterday, after work, instead of going to the gym I decided to head to the beach and spent an amazing 2 hours walking in the water.  It was the perfect end to a work week.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Happy Pride to NYC, Seattle, Chicago and all the other cities celebrating today!!! 

(photo from my first NYC pride in 2012)

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Pride weekend in Rhode Island!  

Saturday was Pride Fest down next to the canal.  This year was the first year that I could check it out.  I walked down and spent a fun hour before walking to the train station to hop a train for dinner with some Seattle family who had been on vacation in NH before catching their flight back to Seattle.

I love my new city.

A gay caped crusader heading toward the iconic Superman building.

Lobster rolls at Pride Fest.  Must be Rhode Island.  

After a wonderful dinner I grabbed the train back to Providence in time for their night time Pride parade.  While walking to the center of town I saw the most glorious light.  This is not photoshop enhanced.

And then, as always, the parade was a good time.  There is something magical about celebrating at night.

Friday, June 13, 2014

It's been a while since I posted.  I have full intention of returning to this blog with longer posts and more frequent entries, but sadly, I've been neglectful.

One day it will happen.   

I am still working a temp position and I need to keep reminding myself that there is a fair amount of stress when not a permanent employee.  In addition, it doesn't really pay the bills.  I spend my time out of work in an attempt to keep a semblance of normalcy and routine in the midst of this shaky ground.  It involves spending more time experimenting with cooking, which takes time, hitting the gym 4 - 5 times a week, work with my art and then make time to see friends and visit my folks once a month.

So, that's my life in a nutshell.  It may give the impression of a mundane life but there is much richness found in the spaces.

Last weekend I had planned on going to the beach, but stayed in and worked on paintings for two days.  I hadn't been to Horseneck Beach since April.  

On Wednesday afternoon, as I was leaving work I took a left instead of a right and ended up here.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Horseneck Beach. The snow fences have been taken down, the path is cleared and the last vestiges of winter's mark are disappearing. 

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Today's painting time included this quick little 12"x16" oil study on canvas in preparation for larger painting.  

In honor of all my beloved Bears around the country, "Still Life with CPap" is based on a photo I took at Phil & David's back in 2007.  I just waited until the time was right to begin the painting.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Since I've returned to New England, one of the few things I've found very challenging is the late winter/early spring grayness. After spending 15 years surrounded by green lushness, with camellias blooming in January, cherry blossoms opening at the end of February and even seeing roses in December...New England, for all it's cool stuff, has a harsh and dreary six weeks. Here it is, the 3rd week of April, and I am over the moon jubilant that the big tree outside my studio window is finally waking up.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

The potent desire to clean house while in the throes of art grant and submission deadlines is clearly encased in the law of physics.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

When the light is right, magic happens.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

I've been going through all my photos from a magical afternoon at Horseneck Beach on Sunday…in the snow.

Here are a few for now.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

I'm one happy, happy girl. Beach in the snow!!! 

After spending 8 hours yesterday and 4 this morning working numbers for tax prep, I celebrated this task completion by hitting Horseneck Beach about 3:30 this afternoon with good friends. It was very cold...but made for a perfect long walk. Now comes the big job of editing 260 images down to about 20.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

I love the stillness of snowfall. Even on a night like tonight when I can see the wind whipping the snow around, it holds the quiet. We live in a frenetic world and so cherish these moments. In snow, is Silence.

Monday, February 10, 2014

I had a what turned out to be a great gathering at my home on Saturday. It was originally a very belated try again bday party for me that morphed in an early birthday for Nicole and a condolence party because Anna had to leave her beloved studio and move into another space. Chinese food a couple blocks away and then dessert and drinks at my place.

Cake by Daved and Serena, flags made by D, S and me, pie by me and photo taken by someone else (not sure who!)

Probably one of my all time best gifts was when someone at the party exclaimed "I'm so glad you moved to Providence!".

These are all folks I've met in the last 18 months, except for Lewis who I've known for much longer, and am grateful to have them in my life.

Friday, February 07, 2014

Fun work incident:  I work with many people who have very thick south of Boston accents.  It's something I've noticed since I've moved to Providence.   My desk is next to a guy named Don.   There is a worker in the factory whose name is Dawn.  Sometimes, the operator will page "Dawn please call the operator".  Early on when I'd hear the page I'd ask Don "why aren't you calling the operator?"  He'd respond "because she paged Dawn"  
Me: "How can you tell the difference?  
Don: "It's obvious" he says.  
And we'd both end up laughing.

Yesterday I had nothing to do, so I asked the other 4 in my area "anyone need help?  I'm even up for doing something boring!".  Angela gave me a job.   As I worked through a list of UPC numbers on my computer I came upon a problem.  After some thinking I realized I could research using something Don has shown me when I've assisted him.  

I complete the job and hand it back to Angela, mentioning the fact that I was stumped in the middle but used something Don taught me.  She and two others in the workspace look at me, confused, and all say "Dawn?  When have you done work for Dawn?"  I look at them, puzzled.  "I've helped Don almost every week!"  They ask "but you haven't been introduced to Dawn!"

There was much laughter once we all realized what was happening.  It reminded me of the "who's on first" comedy bit because we went round and round for a while. 

(photo taken a couple nights ago on Broadway…next to my home)

Monday, February 03, 2014

Returned from NYC and fell into a crazy, surprising and delightful week.  And busy.  Very busy.  Here is another NYC photo.  This one from the Met.  I spent Sun, Jan 26th, leisurely wandering the Met…and for the first time with no agenda.  No blockbuster must see show.  It was a treat. 

Friday, January 24, 2014

Whenever I return to NYC a part of me feels I've returned home. My heart always leaps a little as I see the approaching skyline. It's strange...coming from the girl whose heart is also entrenched in the New England coastline. I am thrilled to my toes to be spending almost 4 days here, and doing so with a dear amazing painter, Sue Danielson.  It's art in the city time!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Another photo from my commute last night.  

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

I've been super busy these last few weeks.  Trying to get back into a routine but that will have to wait until next week because I'm away again this weekend.

Blizzard tonight.   My 20 minute commute took almost an hour and a half.  On the plus side, it's really pretty out.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Well…I had a belated birthday adventure planned for Saturday evening.  On Saturday morning I needed to cancel it.

Instead of outdoor ice skating, then walking for Chinese food, and then a short walk to my house for cake and fun, I spent the bulk of the weekend battling a nasty stomach bug.   Finally, after some organic ginger tea in the afternoon, I was able to keep some light food in my stomach.

This afternoon, although I'm feeling better, I've been drained.  It's been kind of nice to have free HBO this weekend because I couldn't do anything other than lay there and drift in and out with movies in the background.

I hope to reschedule for February.  And I'd rather not spend another weekend like this one.

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Here is another photo taken on Sunday.  This was right across the road from the restaurant in Westport.   I love stone fences and had forgotten how much I enjoyed them until I moved to RI and saw them everywhere.

Monday, January 06, 2014

Taken while on my beach/snow adventure.  Such a great day!  

This my favorite of the 330+ photos I took.  I'm really proud of it.