June 27, 2013

Sacred Dreaming

I just had to share this here today...documenting the journey and the path....of COW. 
I let Talisman sit for a couple of weeks because it was intense and because I love looking at the brightness of her and her blue skin. 
I paused for a moment in a dream and to dream ...I painted my Sacred Dreamer during the month of June.  She was a joy to be with. I learned a lot about my dreams and goals with her. I learned that it really is easier and so much more fun to live when you follow your heart. 

In this painting the hearts symbolize my dreams and wishes. The yellow bird sings to me and reminds me to be still and listen. She whistles the songs of my soul back to me like soft music. Look at her earring. Can you tell what it is? Yes! Her earring is a dream catcher.

I have long had a love affair with the Wizard of Oz and Dorothy. The yellow brick road represents my story and reminds me that I have the brains, heart, and courage to awaken and fulfill my deepest desires. 
One morning this week I found a comment on Facebook from a sweet friend that  said: "I love how you explained the meaning of your beautiful painting...seems like you have always had the power to go home, Dorothy!"
It hit me like golden sunlight warm on my face. Yes! I do have the power to go home! WE ALL DO. Have you been home lately? Visit the house where your soul lives. Knock on the door and the Muse will let you in. Step through that door and open yourself to the wisdom and Truth of yourself. 
Again, this morning I woke up with such a sense of gratitude in my heart. As I watched the sunlight come through the window blinds... I could see the water's reflection from the pool outside on my ceiling...the way the water and the sun danced upon the dry wall above me...it was like I was looking into a live portal. It was magnetizing and just like what happens when I paint and get ready to meet the Muse. 
I am so grateful for the space and time of my life RIGHT NOW. I am so grateful to have been blessed to be on this path with all of you dreamers!
I know now that this feeling will not end because I have been shown the way to access it! My eyes may be closed but I can see everything! Words can't express what is inside for my teachers and mentors. Especially Shiloh.  
My Facebook friends' words pulled it all together for me! 
I am telling the whole world OVER and OVER again! There is MAGIC HERE! There is PEACE HERE! 

Come paint with me, I will show you. 

June 22, 2013

Moving with Faith

My, my, my! June has flown by for me. I really can't believe that we are celebrating the second day of summer. I have been busy in the studio and writing a book close to my heart. I wanted to post what I have been up to since at the end of the year I plan to make my blog into a book...I must have content  and documentation of my "luminous" year! 

Big news over at Casa McDaniel... we are finally moving out of my parents upstairs apartment and into our own house again! The decision to move into my parents house nearly 2 years ago was a good one. We have been able to take advantage of repairing ourselves financially and most importantly we have come to learn that we really don't need a lot of stuff to be happy. Downsizing helped us appreciate what is truly important to us and what really matters. With the increasing amount of art supplies, workshops, and commissions I am in need of a bigger studio. My husband too, an artist at his core, is ready to start building his furniture again and getting creative. Being and living as artists is important to us. Finally after almost 2 years we are ready to begin again with a new found respect for what truly matters. 

These last 2 years have been about big changes. In this time I grew as an artist, quit my job, let go of being a landlord, let go of friendships that drained my energy, which in turned allowed space for new friendships... Jeff and I got married... there were ups and downs...there still are, but I move through all of it with unwavering faith. 

I have learned that having faith in myself and in the journey helps me to make choices that are truly aligned with my values.  I value living with intention. 

I practice bringing my mindfulness to each interaction, circumstance, or situation I encounter. Practice makes everything possible. 

Working with the Talisman assignments through my COW training has been such a grounding experience. I love meeting each Muse that comes through the portal of my canvas. There is something so profoundly magical that happens when I take my time getting to know the face staring back at me. The conversations we have...the Love that is present...just really amazing. That is me painting up there at the Southwest School of Art here in San Antonio, TX. I am currently working on a proposal for a class I want to teach. Keep your fingers crossed for me.  

My Talisman, Ewya, is still not quite finished. I am loving her with her blue skin so very much but I am not sure if I should leave it or glaze over her to integrate her more...we will see. This strong and powerful "she-ro" has helped me to feel a confidence I did not know before. I got bolder this month just like her vibrant colors. I committed to facilitating a workshop and another red thread ceremony. 
My husband and I sold two of three properties we owned and just this last week closed on the second. We still have one more to go but I feel a heavy weight has been lifted. I have been in the real estate game for 13 years and it's definitely time to let go. 

Ewya, showed me the wisdom inside of myself and allowed me to keep going even with traces of fear. Letting go of what doesn't serve my life and values is a continuous process. I am getting more and more comfortable with changes and more comfortable with what I am offering in the world. 

Enjoy your weekend and have faith in all you do! 

June 12, 2013

The Critic, Muse and Scrooge

After weeks of writing and working on curriculum with Claudia Olivos for Hermana Sagrada's new online courses, The Color of Woman School assignments, my Soulful Metamorphosis "book" that literally had my right hand in pain from the constant flow of words, blogging, and taking a creative writing class for fun... I was exhausted and over-extended to the max. The past few weeks have been about rest and reflection. Oftentimes when I find myself in these periods, I cocoon for long hours that turn into days. I sleep a lot and stay in my small space moving in and out of what I think is real and what is dream. Family and friends have come to understand the intensity of my process but it is not always easy.  

In recent weeks I have been completing the Talisman painting with COW. I am always amazed at the power of practicing intentional creativity. It is a beautiful thing to see the transformations occur when facilitating workshops for others but it is something so enriching and enlivening to experience for myself. 

I have traveled to the past...a very painful and sobering encounter..and offered my soul gratitude. I have learned to stay centered as possible in the present moments of my life, and I have glimpsed at the future self, artist-woman I want to become through the Talisman teachings. 

The whole experience reminds me of Ebenezer Scrooge's movement from the past, present, and future from Charles Dicken's, Christmas Carole. Is that weird? I thought it was kind of fun and something I could relate to as I went through the process of excavating the crusted pieces of my soul. I thought of Ebenezer's character as a man who let the Critic take over his mind and life. 

The Critic being the voice inside that keeps the old stories of our past alive. The Critic spins the old stories into lies and paralyzes us into fear based re-actions....doing the same things over and over that are not a true reflection of who we are or who we want to become. Ebenezer did not keep the Critic in check and let it take over completely as a result of his life experiences. 

Disappearing Girl

Do you do this too? Sometimes, does the Critic take over because we believe the lies of this internal voice? We say things like: I am not good enough, I am too this...or too that...she/he is better than me...I am not worthy. This voice is in all of us. We recognize it and know it well. It will always be there because it is part of our human make-up. What we must be able to discern is when listening to the Critic is necessary and when it is not. 

There is another voice we hear though isn't there? A softer voice than that of the Critic... but she is there. I have come to call this voice, the Muse. The Muse being the voice inside that is connected to the Divine parts of us and informs what we create in this world. The Muse encourages us to live from a higher sense of Truth. What if we turned up the volume on this voice? 

My friend Denise Daffara inspired me early this morning with her wise words, when she said: 

"If everything has a polar opposite it is dawning on me ever so slowly that the more powerful our Critic is/was/has been, then our Muse is equally powerful in the opposite direction."

I believe this! Yes! This is why painting and intentional creativity are important parts of my life. It is why I have decided to live it and teach it to others! We do not have to be at the mercy of the Critic's negativity. We can choose in every moment to first observe then give the microphone to the Muse. What does she say? What song will she sing to help you re-member the parts of your body, mind and soul that have been dis-connected from each other? This is the awareness and mindfulness intentional creativity can bring to all of us. Through this "showing up" ...shifts in the soul materialize. 

I understand why many people are afraid to do this internal work...it is downright scary, painful, messy, and uncomfortable. I do believe though that each time I push through the layers of doubt and fear just on the other side of that uncomfort is a newer and better version of myself. I collect shiny golden coins of confidence and strength along the way that carry me to the next mountain I must climb. 

After glimpsing the future and his very own tombstone, Ebenezer begged for another chance and thankfully was given the opportunity. Look into your future? What do you see? What are you creating for this world? What is your Truth? I am asking that for today you re-embrace your life. Bring some balance between the Critic and the Muse inside of yourself and live a life in which you are thankful for the sometimes painful past, centered in the present moments, and envision a future that reflects the capital T, Truth of you you are. 

June 7, 2013

Community, Sisterhood, and Art Oh My!

Howdy! Happy Friday to you all! 
It has been a busy time over here in my Cafe´Arte´Studio the past month! Writing curriculum, video making, painting, Color of Woman training, and teaching workshops! Phew! It is all good though because every one of these comes from LOVE! I am in awe and living in gratitude at all of the wonderful people I continue to meet in person and online! 
Building a community is so important to me at this point in my life!  Here are some pictures of a very special workshop I taught this week. 
If you are in a place where building community is calling you I would love for you to join me, Claudia Olivos and close to one hundred Hermanas Sagradas next month on July 12th for Santos Luminosos!  or on August 30th for El Vuelo: Flying together in Sisterhood!  Sign up for any of our courses and you will be granted access into this very sacred circle. 

Claudia and I invite you for these exciting online creativity courses where we will work with the Sacred energy of ritual! Rituals are deeply grounded in our own Latin American background which has roots not only on the Old World religions but also in Native American and other ancient cultures.
In each of these courses you will be led to create two projects, as well as working in your Diario Sagrado (Sacred Journal) via writing and art journaling prompts. 
Santos Luminosos is a fun course in which we will illuminate intentions with Veladorasyou will decorate your own votive candle to use in your daily life for intention, meditation, or prayer and you will also create your very own Santo –you will create a Folk Art style Santo on wood!

At Hermana Sagrada we believe in forging strong bonds within our community through creativity, sharing, and loving support. We are so excited about this course where we will be creating whimsical art inspired by the saying: "just when the caterpillar had given up all hope, she spread her wings and became a butterfly/mariposa"... 

We will be creating a 3D sculptural Mariposa and you will be led to create your own Mixed Media painting from start to finish. From the drawing and painting to integrating the figure into an abstract mixed media textured background!

I hope you will join us! Have a wonderful weekend.