Follow Your Bliss Update

Daniella, Ralph and I with the new photosOccasionally, people “out grow” their paintings. From changes in experiences to evolving beliefs or even Life Event changes. In Ralph’s case, we “both” evolved from the original painting I did for him back in 2005.

When I was in Toronto back in December 2009 I noticed that Ralph had transcended his original painting, and knew I wanted to break it down into individual pieces to now incorporate Daniella into his life in images.

There will also be a fourth painting to this trio, representing Daniella – which will be forthcoming in the next few months. [Read more…]

Turtle Tattoo – Czech Republic

Jan's Turtle TattooIn November 2009 a young man from the Czech Republic emailed me regarding one of the turtle’s I had done for Simon’s painting. Initially he was asking for permission to use that image for a tattoo for himself.

“I found your web site today by searching for man in maze symbols. I was very absorbed by the turtle with man in maze. In this time, I am going through a hard time in my life and I am searching for what I wanna really do – job, be happy with that and doing good things to other people. As a reflection for this I would like to get a tattoo with man in maze – symbol for my life path, for good and bad times, and searching for higher spirit. So my question is if you will give me please the allowance to use the painting of turtle with man in maze as a base for my tattoo.”

I thought that showed great integrity and class that he emailed me for my permission to use it. As an artist, all my work is copywritten, however that does not necessarily stop anyone from using it without my permission. I was grateful that Jan took the time to send me an email, explaining his desire and understanding of the symbol, and the reason it was so important to him.

I replied stating that he could indeed use the symbol, but he must allow me to change it slightly for him. As I’ve stated before, all of my work is one of a kind, and the original symbol he saw was for Simon, and Simon alone. So, I suggested I could alter the image for him slightly to better fit his personality. Jan replied,”I would be very happy about the changed painting, it would be a honor to wear for the rest of my life symbol from person like you.”

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Simon’s Soul

Once again, another wondrous and mystical collaboration with a very willing and open client. Simon emailed me back in January as he was emerging from a dark time in his life. He was turning over a new leaf and embarking on significant changes to his life and mindset. Part of his new direction involved buying a new condo which he wanted to decorate with his own artistic flair, which included a reverence to his life in symbols.

This painting came about one morning as he was sitting on his couch having his tea before work and focusing his mind on how fortunate he has been in his life. He wrote me stating he wanted something “significant, pertinent, beautiful and spectacular” to fill his walls.

“… I want those walls to carry positive images, something that evokes positive feelings…images of aboriginal icons came to me because they are mysterious, they have a meaning, every time you look at them they are different but also they are minimal-geometric, they are a brilliant exercise of concise synthesis and communication of ideas…I realized that what I was thinking of at that moment was the images from your art work and I thought right then and there that the “something special, significant, pertinent, spectacular” I want there to fill my walls is one of your art pieces….I would be honoured if you consider to paint something for me in that big format …something that would be an inspiration everyday when I have my tea in the mornings, and something that welcomes me after a day out. Something that inspires me and tells something about me in that simple language of lines and planes of aboriginal symbols. Something that would lift my spirit and reminds me of all that is good and well.”

And thus, our journey began.

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Follow Your Bliss (Truth Courage Passion)

The wonderful thing about painting for other people is that (both artistically and otherwise) they take you places you wouldn’t normally go if you were only working at a level within your own self. You gain a different perspective by jumping inside their head and crawling around in their skin for a while. Not just to see the world how they see it… but to learn what they have learned by looking at the world this way. It is amazing what you can gain when you are willing to give up your strength, for a time, to learn the strength of another.

This painting was done for my good friend, divine doppelganger, and fellow Peter Gabriel disciple, Ralph Joseph. The title for this hanging comes from his recording company name, Sukha Records. Sukha is Sanskrit for “Finding Your Bliss,” (which I have done a slight variation on, though I’m not the first, I believe Joseph Campbell beat me to it). Not so coincidentally, it is also the motto by which Ralph lives his life. Quite simply, Ralph is a Radiant Manifestation of the Universe, and that is what I have tried to capture in this hanging.

This is the meaning behind Ralph’s painting:

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Hanging 11 – untitled

This design has been a bit of an evolving work in progress, but definitely one of my favourites which is why I have done so many of them.

It has the sun and moon I use quite often, followed by a different take on the cycle of life (why I found it appropriate to give to the hospice). The bird (yin and yang) for flight, and the whale for perseverance.

This is one of the pieces I donated to the Sarcee Hospice, where I work (when I have time… sorry Sandy, I’ve been really busy… honest!!!) as a Palliative Care Crisis Volunteer.

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