Tag Archives: faded beauty

Beauty in the most unexpected of places…

under the church

 

I think this has to be the most beautiful toilet facility I have ever entered.  We had stopped to rest after a day’s walking,  and had settled on a park bench in a large courtyard beside a church, in the busy central city.  After people watching and drinking coffee for well over an hour, I started to look for a wee pee stop (as you do).  I was stunned to be pointed in the direction of two doors leading down below the church.  And once there…I was even more stunned. What an incredible, beautiful, peaceful, elegant, serene and contemplative space.

Sometimes you find beauty in unexpected places. Like public toilets.

 

 


Old is gold…

sydney 2014 181

I had to laugh. One of my son’s, upon flipping through all my photos from my recent trip made a sigh and commented that all I took photos of were “old buildings and trees”.

“That’s because I love them” I replied.  I reflected on this later. He was correct of course… the bulk of my photos were of old buildings and city trees. This was despite being in the midst of a bustling cosmopolitan city with skyscrapers and modern city glitter and shine.  It was the old façades and crumbling stone and timber buildings that gave the city heart.

This is what spoke to me. This is what I love. This is what I notice.


An old favourite in a new colour to love…

Hydrangea purple

It’s no secret that hydrangeas are one of my favourite flowers. I spotted these gorgeous indigo ones at a recent visit to a wonderful local garden. I am usually drawn to the softer, more muted shades of the pinks, the palest blue and creams – especially as they start to fade, but these vivid hues of indigo and deep purple were so stunning that I just fell in love with them.


A thought on personal and individual style.

symbols in home

What is individual style? I have been thinking about this and have come up with a few thoughts about it. To me personal style transcends your home, your studio, your art, your creative endeavours. They are all just manifestations of your style. Your style is you. It is what makes you a unique person on this planet. Style is a reflection of your genuine self, your expression of who you are. Style is understanding who you are and being extremely at ease with that.

Your personal style is partly what others see, it is your art and your creations, your thoughts expressed, your home, and your community. As I think about this I see images from my home, my art, my studio and my journals – all different but threads of the same things – old symbols (hearts, circles, crosses), text and use of letters and words, old patina’s and vintage finds. Trees, beaches, bridges, buildings, houses all feature in my style, as does finding old nests, collecting sea-glass, rocks and shells, quirky finds and birds, horses, growing food, and history all interest me. Writing musings, journalling and playing with mixed media, painting big abstract paintings and trying to do photography everyday are my style. Noticing things others might miss and finding beauty in everyday things are my style. My style is thinking in interconnected circles but writing in bullet points.

Your style is also how you live. Being a mum to four kids will always be my first priority. That’s my style too. Like many of us, I am juggling everyday – the divergent needs and demands of a large complicated and blended family, working to earn income, running, and try to find space in my day to create, fitting in all the other messy stuff in between, that’s my style too.

I am a mother to three boys rapidly moving into that strange place between being men and boys, and one 4 year old princess fairy. A writer and keen blogger. I am a runner. I am a photographer. I am an artist. I am creative. I dream of Italy and of visiting Europe one day. I dream of living closer to the land, but also (ironically) closer to the city centre and so I can smell and hear the sea. I dream of my three sons as babies and wonder at their journey into being young men. I love my pink, sparkly princess who has in a thousand different ways saved me from myself through this process with her enormous smiles, delicious cuddles and piles of charm, giggles and songs. All of this, is part of me.

What has running got to do with style? Running is very much apart of who I am now, after I put on my trainers one year ago exactly and ran to the first lamp post then walked the next two. I run to clear my mind, to think straight, to have my body hurt in a good way. I run so no one can see tears occasionally. I run to have a few precious moments when no-one needs me. Running gives me space to plan, dream and plot. It takes time but it also makes me more creative and more efficient. I also see things that I don’t see when driving or distracted by tasks and errands. They are all part of my style.

Is style is the only thing you have left when you strip everything back to its barest state. Or is style is an individual and original point of view delivered with confidence? Or, the culmination of all the parts of a life brought together? Or is style really just having curiosity, a sense of spirit and confidence in yourself?


Bridging the gap on the east side…

steel railway bridge

I have been travelling recently to the other side of my fair country. To a place I had only been to once many years ago, a place where the sand is pale and golden not black, a place I had only been to in a very different lifetime.

I saw many abandoned railway bridges on my journey. They are no longer used to carry people or cargo around the towns but they have an inherent beauty, individuality and structural elegance that remains to this day. Maybe they will be returned to their former glory  or possibly transformed into a highlight of scenic walking and cycling route…who knows? For now they sit slowly deteriorating in the landscape.

All I know is that I like them and think this one is very beautiful. I hope you do too.


B is for Christmas Bells

B bells of marsland hill

The bells ring out on Marsland Hill every day and what a beautiful sound they make. I would like to hear their daily ritual but do not live close enough and have to settle for catching them occasionally by accident when in the area.

But, nothing sounds more like Christmas than the sound of bells ringing, pure, loud and joyous, so today’s Alphabet Advent calendar on day two, is the letter B for Bells at Christmas time…


Pausing to smell the roses…

spring blossoms in my garden

Creativity ebbs and flows, it shifts and moves. Sometimes you think you have none left. Not a single idea. Writers call it “writer’s block”. That frustrating space when nothing seems new, a blank page seems daunting, ideas seem stupid, and life seems to takeover – days go by and you realise that the most creative thing you have done is write a grocery list…

Then  after a pause, creativity flows again. I used to worry that my creativity had “gone” somewhere – possibly never to return again, but now I know that these pauses are just that – pauses…

I now trust that I will burst forth again after a period of creative down time…with renewed spirit, fresh plans, ideas and new creative thoughts. Like the spring roses that follow winters bare branches, we too have to trust that we will burst into inspired creativeness again. 

Roses in my garden today – enjoy!

 


Time for a new journal…

new journal 2013

As you may know, I am a big fan of journals…I carry one or two with me at all times to jot down ideas, words, thoughts, musings, and as a place to store tokens of things I come across and the like…

Over the weekend I decided to have a go at making my own personal journal, using an old novel and some old magazines. I wanted to make something that felt like “me” and would inspire me to continue to add to it my musings. Here is what I came up with.

Its relatively simple to copy, just be sure to use magazines or other found papers that are not glossy (or you wont be able to write/draw over it). I chose to be a bit discriminating and removed any obvious advertising, but I was also quite open to randomness. I was quite happy with the effect of just glueing down a loose magazine page then tearing it to fit the book and seeing what was left of the image in my “new” journal. You could instead use old maps, old letters, fancy scrap-booking papers, wallpaper (?) and the like…

This is just the base layer, it will look different again with my words, images and assorted paraphernalia filling it up in time. The best bit is I am looking forward to adding to it now…


camera + chair + computer = creativity!

chair

I spotted this lone chair while helping out in an art gallery this week. Against the wooden floors, its elegant curved shape and velvet brocade really took my eye. I decided to really play up the shape and the texture. It turned out quite dramatic and stylised – a fitting outcome for an elegant chair, I believe.

Proving again, that with a mind open to creative opportunity – you can find inspiration anywhere – even in an old chair.

Hoping you have a creatively inspired day today, too.


a house in the country….

little house

I am always pouring over magazines about homes, real estate magazines, architecture, restoration and home-focused magazines and tv programmes…interiors/design/garden magazines – they all fascinate me.

I love pictures of people’s homes and reading about who lives there and why…gathering and exploring ideas for interiors, garden/landscaping/restoration/renovation/furnishings and finding about the lives of people who live in their homes and what inspires them.

This little house intrigued me, mostly because of its tiny cottage and the relatively enormous trees almost overshadowing it and threatening its very existence. Who lives here and why? What stories does this tiny cottage have?


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