Tag Archives: be creative

A Portrait in Ink and Parsley

Cue the cheers and confetti!

Happy New Year!  Have you noticed any thoughts of possible resolutions drifting through your mind these days?  Personally, I dislike resolutions … they seem to come pre-packaged with the cynical threat of failure.  I prefer the anticipation of embracing new ideas, trying new things, and nurturing new habits.  These seem somehow friendlier and more approachable.  And so, may I humbly submit for your consideration this friendly and (perhaps) new habit for 2014:  Found-Object Doodling!

I saw this, a couple of days ago, on the inkygirl blog by children’s book writer & illustrator Debbie Ridpath Ohi, and I wanted to share it with you:

A Portrait in Ink and Parsley
A Portrait in Ink and Parsley

“Found Object Doodles (a.k.a. Sometimes It’s Okay To Play With Your Food Before Eating It)”  by Debbie Ridpath Ohi

Ah!  Inspiring in the best sense of the word, because this is something everyone can do!  Click on the photo above, or the article link, to read (and see) more.  Doodling will warm-up your creative muscles, and there’s no pressure to “make it perfect”.  It’ll bring a smile to your face and to those around you.  It contributes more art to the world and reminds us that art is all around us.  And all it takes to get started is a Sharpie in your pocket.

Cheers!

Something Worth Fighting For

I must share this:

“Unfortunately, in one way or another the world is going to tell you every day that you shouldn’t try to be an artist. But for three minutes here today, I want to tell you that you should. I hope you do it. With everything you have.” ~Blake Morgan

Read the full essay on Huffington Post’s The Third Metric – Redefining Success Beyond Money and Power, “Art and Music are Professions Worth Fighting For”.

Bookmark it.  Share it on Facebook.  Tweet about it.  Refer to it in conversations with school committee officials and policy wonks, businesspeople and community leaders.  Print it out and bring it to your holiday family dinners, to have at-the-ready!  And please, share it with your kids.

Many thanks, C.B., for reading so much and sharing the good stuff!

One Last Sip of Summer

Artist collaborates with her 4-year-old - 02
©2013 Mica Angela Hendricks

The weather today in southern New England was glorious, like a last sip of summer vacation even though we’re a month into the new school year.  I was lucky enough to find a moment to pause and feel the sun on my face today, and in that moment I laughed at my naïve August optimism that I would be able to protect the unhurried feeling of summer vacation and carry it through the school year.  Nope.  Just over a month in, and I’ve already signed up myself and my kids for too many things!

Something’s gotta give, but I still want to keep this blog going.  I’ll let it unfold organically this year and see what happens.  For today, I wanted to share with you this lovely piece about the unexpected delights that can occur when we make art!

click the link below, or the picture above, to read more :)

“Collaborating with a 4-year Old”, from The Busy Mockingbird, 8/27/2013

Listening to the Call

We all have art that calls to us.

If we listen to the call, we become performers, or makers, or active appreciators.  We spend time on our art, because all the arts require time … but when we’re spending time with the art that calls to us, when we’re in our Element, as Sir Ken Robinson calls it, the time seems to pass in an instant.

time flies when you’re having fun…

But no one’s life proceeds in a straight, unchanging line, and some of us may choose to tuck our art away.  Perhaps we are focusing on the demands of a young career, or maybe we are devoted to the priorities of raising our young children.  And there are only twenty-four hours in a day … so we tuck our art away for a while.  And we’re okay with that – well, mostly!  On our good days. ;)

Thank goodness, it doesn’t go away.  The arts are at the core of our humanity; our need for self-expression, for creativity, for connection.  And if we’re lucky or smart or brave enough, we can remember where we tucked it away and bring it out again, or maybe discover something new, when the path of our life turns and we can again spend time on our art.

Nina MurphyFor Bristol resident Nina Murphy, that art is the theatre.  A long-time supporter of public schools and an advocate for arts in education, Nina will be playing Marmee in a local production of “Little Women” running the first weekend in May.  This marks her return to the stage after a number of years, and she is buzzing with nervous excitement about her opening night this Friday.

The eldest of six children, Nina is part of an accomplished creative family.  Her family has always placed high value on the arts; growing up, she remembers her family was always an “arts family”, in the same way that some families are “hockey families” or “soccer families”.  She was an active member of her high school’s theatre company, and went on to double-major in Theatre and English at Boston College.  And like most of us, her life has not followed a straight path – she worked for the Massachusetts State Film Council for a while, then got into media sales for various magazines and news outlets; she got married, and acted in a play or two, and lived in Hawaii for a time; she became a mother and focused her time on raising her young children, and she worked alongside her husband on an entreprenurial venture you may have heard of, Wicked Natural.

Then came a moment when she had a chance to breathe, and wonder what she’d like to do next – and a friend mentioned her acting.  It was one of those moments when you’re so grateful for the friend who can point out what’s right there in front of you, so close you didn’t see it.  She had the time to spend on her art!  And it was a serendipitous moment.  When Nina googled “community theatre rhode island” just to see what would come up, she learned there was an audition that very weekend for an upcoming production of “Little Women” – and without overthinking it, she leaped in.

It wasn’t until after Nina had landed the role of Marmee that she learned the production was the senior project of an ambitious Tiverton High School student named Carrie Monroe.  Ms. Monroe has relied on her lifelong passion for theatre, and the support of her mentor and her local community, to pull off this impressive project.  As director, she is poised to see it all come to life this weekend, May 3rd, 4th & 5th at the Little Compton Community Center.

read more about Carrie Monroe’s production in The Bay magazine.

For Nina, the fact that she can contribute her talent to the effort to bring this student’s directorial vision to life gives the experience a wonderful added layer of meaning.  She’s been moved by the support of her husband and her two children.  She’s thrilled to get to exercise her ‘theatre-muscles’ again.  And she’s glad to have worked with a mix of adults and young people, glad for the chance to learn from each other, to grow.  But mostly, she’s happy she did it, she got back to her art.  “It’s been great to revisit something that’s always given me such pleasure, and that’s creating a character.”

Break a leg, Nina!

Catch a performance of “Little Women” this weekend, on Friday, May 3rd and Saturday, May 4th at 7pm, and on Sunday, May 5th at 2pm, at the Little Compton Community Center, located at the Commons in Little Compton, RI.  Tickets are $10 and are available at the door; the production is a fundraiser for autism awarenessClick here for directions.