Florida Street Art.

dscf8077_27218265421_o

I have lived in Galveston for six years and now it’s onto other travels and adventures. There is much to explore. I’ve started with Florida, a place that I never thought I cared to really put on my map but am now shown how wrong I was. I love art-deco of all things and also mid-century. I love artistic communities and good food and local musics of all kinds. I love beach towns and sailboats and walkable communities. And here I am absorbing it all.

The street art, artistic community of Hollywood, Florida, and the parks built for art are really awesome. The Art Park has an event just about every night and is only a bock away from where I stay, it’s beautiful with the most amazing huge trees by day, great picnic and reading. Classic Car shows, a Food Truck night, food and wine festivals, an Artwalk and more, every night. They have an entire gallery and stage building built just for glass blowing and have live shows as well as “make your own”. The city obviously puts a lot of money and focus into the artistic community and it’s a great blend of retired, young adult, families, and artists, and business. There are also a lot of art galleries and studios around here, too.

I’ve lost some of my pics but will try and replace/retake. And I did try and take pics of the artists signature on street art whenever I could or it was available.

dscf8085_26681167884_odscf8088_27288146155_odscf8087_26681270754_odscf8080_27254764986_odscf8081_27254750806_odscf8083_26682287883_odscf8076_27288251605_odscf8063_26682485433_odscf8061_27218410951_odscf8062_27255117236_odscf8057_27218430861_odscf8055_27288497585_odscf8054_27255066156_odscf8053_27255007576_odscf8044_27288838845_odscf8043_26682009764_odscf8041_26683140263_odscf8039_27218885321_o

The Inspired Writer. Flower of wishes.

dscf9107_27241587021_o

Finding inspiration in any one art is to find it in nature.

A walk in a neighborhood, tuning out all else, the sound of traffic and the barking of dog. And tuning into the Spring time gardens in bloom and the smell after a fresh rain, the Summer time smell of fresh cut grass and the heat of the sun warming your skin, the Autumn colors and crunch of fallen leaves under your feet, the Winter ice storm and smell of fireplaces lit.

And the fallen flower. Especially the bloom that in childhood carried free wishes, summertime childs laughter, and many many memories of summers past. Now there it is, fallen on the ground like the cynicism of adulthood sees all the wishes one made once as a child that never came true.

Yet even in the shadow that we now know exists, the beauty can be found of a fallen flower laying on the ground. I close my eye’s and imagine the sound of my childhood, those wishes I sent into the wind in one big believing and anticipating breath. I remember what was important to me then, what I wished for. And think about what my wishes are for now. I can’t help but to smile, lift that puffy soft boom, and send a wish into the world. Who knows?

I returned home after my walk, a soft lovely image in mind, the shadow brought to light and the light caused only because of shadows exist. That all that grows must fall, but only to grow again in a new season. And that out there my wishes float on air. And here, I remember what was, and is, important to me. Walk returned from, my mind fresh and clear. I sit back to my desk and let the new words flow, as if carried like wishes on air.

dscf9106_27278367086_o

Art Talks & The Bullshit.

IMG_20160827_160941

There was this one time when a group of us gathered in a pop up gallery, friends helping the curator preparing for an artshow. Well most of us were, the joke had just been made of “wait till so&so shows up, an hour late and she will sit down with food and then leave without having helped.”

Barely five minutes later and The One of us came an hour late, to say she had been there, sat with her carry out bag and ate.

Another friend of mine walks into the gallery and the eater asks “Are you are artist, too?” To which my always a-little-messing with peoples heads smiles and says “It depends on what you mean by art” to which the eater replied “Everything is art!”

And to which I replied out loud before any thought and with a snort “That’s such bullshit.”

My strong reaction was the fact that artists work for their art, they might be born with a talent, but they must work for the skill to sharpen that talent, form that talent and build it…or a talent ends up as nothing more than left on the shelf collecting dust and growing mold.

I consider myself artistic and art-loving, but not yet have I made it to the podium for my medal of being an artist. It isn’t about what is published or the shows I curate and produce, it is about the hours put in. The mistakes, the tried and failed. The blood, sweat and tears. Hours, days, weeks, months, and years, and that dedication. No, I haven’t earned that title…that medal yet.

A lot of people have talent, not a lot use it. Much talent lays to waste over laziness.

But to say that everyone can be an artist or that everything is art is to discredit the work, blood, sweat and tears…the hours and hours of work that an artist actually puts into their creating.

Being an any good artist who produces an any good art is an entire other topic.

No, not everything is art and thus everybody an artist anymore than everybody is a college educated CEO of a major billion dollar company or a brain surgery is not something that just everybody can do.

I don’t discredit my car mechanic for their work because I simply don’t know it all. Or hell, even my garbage man because it’s not a job I would want to do…that man gets his credit. And I don’t diminish the credit deserving on my favorite singers, painters, writers, dancers, sculptors and more…who create art out of a nothing that nobody saw there before…creating a something for everybody to see, that little glimpse within their mind shared.

So, no, not “everything” is art. Everything can inspire art. But not everyone is inspired the same, or at all. Art can be pulled from everything. Everybody can feel their heart swell at the site of an ocean shoreline during sunset, but only a artist will take that experience and turn it into…something, called art.

Something that causes us to then be able to feel that chest swelling feeling without even the ocean shoreline during sunset being n our own line of vision.

Art is not everything, but an Artist in everything can make art found.

Lit Talk Mondays: Book Tours.

IMG_20160829_201856

This article inspired this blog post. I really felt it, having worked with many artists, singers, writers and more who do a lot of types of shows and entertain…but then the ‘still need you to BUY this’ just really hit on so much…that’s great that you love it…please buy it. Chip in a buck, ya know? So I can keep doing this, and produce more for you.

Because writing is a job. Many artists pay their bills on their work…or try to. And certainly more money goes into creating it than it goes into our bank accounts. Especially when you put a price on time. Time is money…so are supplies for each artist to make it happen.  We would never ask a surgeon to do their work for the ‘experience and exposure.’ And yes, many artists have just as much education behind them and school loans and debt without the steady income that will pay that back.

I also thought it was good to look further into book tours since I will have my own book(s) on shelves soon and since I have been researching all aspects of traditional publishing, self publishing, indie and big house, and what each entails, learning more on book economy and so forth, book tours added  in…and the insight I got was eye opening. Maybe it’s the ‘manager’ personality in me but I am not a fly in blind kind.

Any writers, publishers and others who would like to give some insight?

Also to read:

The Atlantic-Modern Face of Book tours.

Authors on tour.

Book Tour Tell All.

Walk the Walk…Artwalk that is.

885352_342484739185417_1723832186_o

This is an old blog post from a little Island Blog I did for awhile. It’s a good one that shows a little bit about the #Art world of Galveston and a little bit about my life at one point.

gulfislandliving

Art on our island this past weekend was fantastic!

This past weekend, March 9th, was Galveston Island Artwalk, held every 6-8 weeks ( schedule can be found on Galveston.com ) . The week leading up to it I myself was helping Becky Major prepare the Artspace’s Galveston location , National Artist Lofts Gallery at Market St. and 23rd.  They held a benefit show of photography from the travels of Christopher Jones , benefiting Project Kajsiab Laos Trisha Thompson Adams (tinyartshop) , Elizabeth Punches,Frank Lankford, John Debris, Tom Clark and Matt Mejia Music also kept the crowd entertained.

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

JImageElizabeth Punches ” Galveston Mermaids”

ImageObserving art of Christopher Jones. at The National Artist Lofts.

My Art walking didn’t get to visit nearly half of the galleries and shows but I did stop by Elizabeth Punches location. I advice you to see  The  kabuki Painting…

View original post 426 more words

The Inspired Writer and the Tumbled Bricks.

12509351_721611104606110_7674418122199488378_n

Red Brick behind chain link. One by one to build it up, one by one to tumble down.

Finding inspiration as a writer or for my writing is a question I have come across or been asked on several occasions. The “how do you find it?” question. Really, one way is that I love photography. I love it in art, in museums, in a frame, on large canvas in a gallery. However it is I am drawn to it a lot and enjoy the story that draws me in. I always feel that if the image draws me into a story then the photographer has done their job. I also enjoy finding the image and as a hobby I often take a camera out and walk all over the place, seeking out or just stumbling across those spots that say “capture me, I have a story to tell you.” And I lift my lens and snap.

The image doesn’t have to be one that has me rushing home and jotting down a matching or fitting story. Often it doesn’t at all. But the walk and the image have fed my mind in a different way that has me sitting down with a cleared mind, revved up for something new. Even if that is new words added to a story in progress.

This image of the red brick carriage house and pile of bricks behind the chain link fence doesn’t have me adding this to a story in the least, but maybe the feeling of it penetrates into my words. I might have walked by this location a million times when living on Galveston island and each time my chest would seize with an entirely different feeling, image, thought, idea, or story. But a feeling would always be there. This picture came after six years of walking by it and still a feeling was as strong as the first time. My inspiration can draw from that feeling, whatever it may be, and not from the ‘brick’ of the image itself. Inspiration is a funny thing…is it the site, the sound, the color, the feeling, the weather even at that moment that inspires? Or all of it? Or your own frame of mind at that very moment. Having walked by it a hundred times before, it was this moment in whatever my frame of mind was then that seemed to be captured in this shot.

I look at it now and what I see is that one by one it takes to build it up….and the pile on the ground is to me the image of one by one to tumble down. Life is fragile, on display, but still carries many secrets behind those windows. One meeting doesn’t give the whole story and each meeting is different upon mood….my own, or yours, and the day. It is as if to say that there is no judging the book. One might be visiting the island and see this image as disrepair, tumbling, crumbling, falling down, old and wasting away. Such a shame. And another who has lived here long see’s it, knows of it, as hard work put in over a long period of time, each brick retipped, the foundation strengthened, the weak bricks replaced, the roof rebuilt, the new windows installed. But not all of that is in a single day. This is not a lovely building being left to waste, but one being rebuilt and brought back to life, preserved. And It takes time. Little by little. Yet a different person on one day can see completely different images that to them each a different story.

Our works are like this image, too. As well as ourselves. It takes one brick and then another to create and build over time. A person stumbling upon the work half way through might see a falling image, and another could see the creation process of a building image. On any given day we ourselves can see it in each light, and we ourselves are who has laid each brick and knows, and yet sometimes get a little lost in the process. Forget which way is up. Lose site of the big picture. Lose track of the progress and become frustrated. With our work. With ourselves.

Such is life. Such is how we choose to see the image. Such is how we seek out our inspiration and such is how we choose to hear the story being told to us through word, image, song, time of day. Whenever I lose track of the big picture or the finish line of my work, or of myself, I can take a moment to look at this image and be reminded that I am looking at only the half finished product, mid-way in process, and not the finished version, and that the finished version will not be achieved without one brick at a time being placed.

Art Talks & My Questions.

dscf7097_26311275693_o

(Picture of the ETC Theatre in Galveston, TX.)

I want to explore and identify arts in community, specifcally in answering When Art has changed community. What exactly is art’s stamp when it moved into your neigborhood? Did it move in, or did it exist first and create the communty around its existance? Has art truly made a community? Built up the community? Formed a community? Has it been a building block or foundaton itself?
I have begun looking at various locations and “artstic communities” to sort through much information and hopefully find the link that would lead me to these answers. In doing so my end outcome would be if Art really helps a community, does art actually build and create a community, does art help a community to thrive. Are artistic communities happier, fuller, than those who are not.

Though I will touch base on economy and education, I will only do so in briefly on this thread to keep the focus on one direction, and bring those two branches in at another time, giving them their due spotlight.

Lit Talk Mondays. The Rebound.

IMG_20160730_092628

Now here is a new Kickstarter program that I came across that hit me good and hard, right in all the feels; Recovering The Classics . Because it promotes reading older books as well as promotes reading altogether. It gives artists jobs and creates new arts. It combines books and art and one place that I love and have a passion for (as far as enjoying, not as creating) in book cover art. I first read about this in Poets&Writers Magazine , and since, of course, have looked for it all over online to see what they are up to, all about, and to check in on their progression. I may have basically internet stalked the absolute hell out of them. I do hope in my travels to catch one of their live events promoting the project.

I can not wait to see all of the new cover art and really hope to catch a full on show of comparison of the new and the old. If this is not yet a thing, I would love to step up and make it a thing and curate this show. But regardless, this need to be a thing.

Not only is this a literary bounce in the right direction of pulling young readers attention, as well as us oldies alike, to newly read and be interested in the classics but to also Re-Read and do a lot more TBT in the literary sector. But it also ties in art altogether which of course, if you know me then you know I am a fan of. Going even further? You just (hopefully) paid for an Artist to eat, a writer to (maybe) receive royalties of new sales and tempted a child or an adult to read so….in any case, you can not go wrong.

I myself look to help contribute in whatever way I can to this project, starting by spreading the word. Look for more on this in the future. The joke in my home now is that this gives me reason to add more books, a collection of the old version and next to it a collection of the new. Because book addiction just found a reason to grow.

The Inspired Writer. Views from another angle and her chains.

13631600_805288506238369_3247979920600239938_n

(Photo by Peggy J. Davenport)

Sometimes to see something clearly you have to get down at a different angle, tilt your head, squint your eye. Often this is true when writing or creating your own art,…we have to step back and look a little crazy to see where to go from there. But the same is true in other aspects of life. On relationships misunderstanding and miscommunication are often caused by not seeing the situation from another angle. Stand back, tilt your head, squint a little. And the same can be said about entire points of view and the way many live, you know, those times we sit there on our little high horses and say “I just don’t get why she can’t get her shit together” and sip away on our lattes. Perhaps we just haven’t stood back, and squinted enough. Seen things from another angle and by somebody else’s perspective. This same analogy came up in conversation about “those who talk ghetto” as it was worded (not by me) I once had the same idea of that but came around to realizing that nobody ever says that Matthew McConaughey should talk different. And frankly, I didn’t need more thought about it after that.

In my writing there are times when I have stared at a white screen and black words until I am blind. Until the white screen and black words are just that, rather than the story spinning as gold threads from my mind. And I have to take a moment and find another angle. When there is a question in the story or about the story that stumps me I must stand back and squint a little. See it in another light. As a writer writing often means finding inspiration, taking a simple walk, reading a book, watching a movie, or listening to a song. As a writer we have this perfect “movie” in our head and have to translate that to back and white, basically into an entirely different language, that will then be able to translate again back into that movie in the mind of the reader, a language and translation in which we are not always fluent. As a writer we get lost in the word count, in the time of day and in the distractions that pull us away and we must take time to stand away from what we are doing, lie on the floor, tilt our head back and stare at the ceiling…clear our mind first to see the picture buried inside. As a writer we write the story for hours and days and weeks that turn into years even, and then we must stand back and through our squinty scrunched up faces we are often likely making at our computer screens, see how the story would be if we came around at it from an entirely different direction.

I took a walk with my camera one day and heavy on my mind were the differences of the world and the fighting against those differences that covered the news. And suddenly I had angles and colors and textures popping out at me every which way, little stories and understandings and everything I came across had meaning. Then I came across this link of chain. And for me, freshly out of seven months spent in jail at the time, this one had me the most. I had been in fear every step of the way since being out and even carried the idea that jail was more comforting than the real world and I was wearing down of the fighting the defeat every day. Seeing the chain my mind opened up to the fact that even no longer wearing chains, I was allowing myself to be held by them.

I was holding myself back from potential, out of fear, out of guilt, out of carrying everybodies opinions drug behind me, weighing me down. And I wasn’t taking the opportunities I had to go where I wanted to go, do what I wanted to do. I went home that day and wrote…and wrote and wrote and have since been writing my way out and away from obligations to anybody but myself, I have released many of those weighed down chains I once drug behind me. I have let go of worrying about what others thought or seeking friendships lost and forgiveness of theirs that frankly, they didn’t deserve nor was I obligated to give. No mistakes are left unmade in this world. I had held any punishments for any of my wrong decisions and I shouldn’t have to continue being punished, most of all I shouldn’t continue punishing myself. I let go of a lot. I worked hard and with new focus. Less wasted time. I put in literal blood sweat and tears and I have a very long road to go ahead but I have at least made my way to that road from being lost in the jungle I had seemed to be in.

All because I stopped and looked at something from another angle.

Now I work hard every day and not worry about the wasted time, lost time, changes of life and all that time I shoulda coulda woulda stuff. You know the “If I had started this ten years ago, I could be somewhere by now” Well, I am here now, I could keep letting myself lose more time or start working to catch up. I instead have the idea of my life for the Now and for what I believe will be the rest of it, though life changes all the time, I put my nose to my work and focus ahead, draw from experience for my work from what is behind me but I let it push me forward rather than hold me back.

Life and world inspiration really comes from a lot of angles and through a lot of squinty eye’s and chin in hand moments (for me there is always an involved chin in hand no matter what wrinkles later in life this may cause) when I feel like I am weighed down, working hard but getting nowhere. Grinding the gears, It is time to take a walk and clear my head and look to be inspired. To be inspired IN my writing, I must look outside of it. And this will sometimes entail finding me with camera in hand, one eye closed through lens and down at odd angles to see something from a different way.

Other angles and different ways. As a writer we are found reading what we wrote out loud, hearing it sound completely different in voice than in idea of your own head. Or sipping our coffee, leaned back in our chair staring at the computer screen, making faces and even talking back at it as if in conversation. Artists often look a little crazy, and often are a little. But don’t mind us, just keep waking by.

But using this idea of viewing from different directions, angles and sometimes through that squinty eye, has helped me mature, in all types of relationships, friendships and even that with my partner. I often have to look at the two of us from another angle as I am a writer with an over-analytical mind, a brain of half engineer and story teller, and a Libra. He is an ex-Navyman, from the north, were I am from the south (that alone makes for some major differences) he is an Aquarius, yet nothing like his sign in a lot of ways, where I am very much mine. He has NO artistic mind whatsoever, and I the writer. We grew up very different in some ways, and very the alike in others. He is just getting started with his first good what can be called even ‘real’ relationship and I am at a time and age of complete comfort in being alone. In many ways on and off paper we work, and in many ways we do not. In many things we differ in view and idea and even value. Don’t even get us started on politics. Balance is created but I myself can only see that by seeking view from another direction, another angle. He is usually already there. But in all sorts of relationships with people of all types I have learned there are times to let the chains go and drop the weight, and when to value more deeply by seeking those angles.

For my work I am less oppressed, I might not always work in exactly what I want but rather than fight the direction my words flow, I let them go and see what comes out of it. As a writer writing every day is key, not everything I write will be a well baked cake but out of the practice, work, dedication, exercise, and routine of it, more well baked cakes than not will come out of the oven for it. I have learned not to fight the flow of a story but let the words play out, and then I can always rearrange what’s there but staring at a blank screen never gives me anything to work with or move around. Less fight, more digging so to speak. I have found I can take large chunks of something written and create them to another project altogether, and then easily go back and fill in the hole left. It is always easier shoveling the dirt into the hole you just dug it out from.

This angle and squinting works well for a year like 2016 with the presidential race happening. I see so many people looking at it from only one direction, often simply “I AM Republican and therefor must vote as so!” and not actually getting down, turning their head and closing one eye to maybe see it from anothers view. Learn a little something while doing so. This other angle idea helps me as a writer and in life. It is similar as stepping into another’s shoes. Seeing from all angles and sides always helped me when running and creating companies, helping me to pay a lot of bills and buy a lot of books in my time, and the owners of many companies enjoying their summer homes and more because of it. It has also gotten me through a lot of the odd times in my life. And it will move me ahead in life and in career.

And in the simplest of all explanations of other angles and squinty eyes, is that you might just find a good picture in it all.

Lit Talk Monday-Blog To Book.

IMG_20160827_201519

Jenny Lawson
The Bloggess
2 books out now. Plus an adult coloring book.
Let’s Pretend This Never Happened.
Furiously Happy.

I have so far read Let’s Pretend This Never Happened after having been reading on her blog from time to time for about a year. The book was even better! I loved it, I laughed and I heard it make many other people laugh. Really good read, real life material and puts mental illness issues in the front line without being at all depressing or self help. High on the humor!
Maria Elena Sandovici
Have Water Colors Will Travel
Two books now plus her water color art.
Dogs With Bagels
Stray Lonely Beaches

I have loved her blog and her water color art but I finally read Dogs With Bagels…and then I read it again. It was THAT good!
It’s more than chicklit by far but an easy read however fun with real life like situations that still hold enough magic and comes full circle in the story.
As much as I loved the first, and have even bought copies as gifts, I will soon read the second.

Julie Powell
Julia & Julia (Blog to Book to Movie)
A Story of Marriage, Meat, and Obsession.

I have read the blog, the book, and watched the movie and LOVED them all.
It inspires me to try the same….however I haven’t. I’ve not read her second book but having just found out about it, now plan to.

 

 

I am sure there are more but I am not sure which came first out of all I have read…the Blog or the Book?

If you’re been a blogger who published a book…share!
Others to check out:

The Guardian on Blogger to Book.

Mashable- Blogs To Books.

Top 20 Bloggers