The Power of Art to Empower

Posted September 16, 2011 by cilipower
Categories: Uncategorized

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Truly when I create something beautiful I am full of wonder!  I look at page after page of thumbnails of art created by marvelous artists at a website called EBSQ and I get lost in the power of the beauty!  For me art is spiritual, just looking at art gives me a spiritual fix, a buzz, a case of the goosebumps (those usually are reserved for musical performance art)(well performed)!  The performance of the Hungarian Rhapsody at a folk life festival I attended with my kids(adult kids) brought me to tears with it the beauty and passion of the execution.  Years ago I had the honor and the experience of a lifetime to see the performance of Joni Mitchell performing with the L.A. Philharmonic Orchestra.  Honestly, the gossebumps and shivers up and down my spine never stopped until the last note!  I saw Loggins and Messina perform their “Sittin’ In”  album in a college auditorium at Dallas…from first strum of a guitar to the last ringing note of song…goosebumps and shiver-me-timbers!   Ahh!  The memories!!!

Art and the culture born of and around the art is so much of what is human vs animal.  Some animals use tools, so the use of tools is not what separates us.  Language is not the separator we used to think it was.  Not since we studied in-depth the chimpanzees, dolphins and whales.  The closest the animal kingdom comes to art display and language is alive and well in cuttlefish.  But since we don’t speak cuttlefish, we don’t know if green and violet pulsation in triple time is “Hey beautiful, wanna play?” or “Hey dumbass, get outta da way!”  One thing we do know is we alone of the animals of earth have art.  We, I mean humans of course, we know and enjoy, and covet art.  It is what drives curators to curate, collectors to collect, thieves to thieve(well maybe it is the money you get from thieving), but the  money would not be there without the passion alive in those that covet.

Oh, how I want to have the feeling of someone “coveting” my art and paying me the money I ask to be separated from the art I created and love so much that if I never sell it I have its’ very being to enjoy.  I am very sentimental about each piece of work I have hanging around my room, my kitchen, living room.  I love them all, but would part with any of them for “moolah, chashola, greenbacks, enumeration, monetary appreciation!  It is an economic thing, I am a “starving artist” who hungers for a bit of freedom that money makes easier, for some ease that money makes possible, and the lack of causes only stress.  I do not starve for creativity!  That is my gift to me.  I give myself that in droves, and all the energy I spend in creating, well I would love to spend that energy in the execution of a regular job, but I am disabled, retired for health reasons. My knotting is done while seated, and in my home (my bedroom) so no energy needed to get to and from. “I Knot Therefore I Am” is the title of a poem that resides in my Artist Statement an speaks simply and eloquently about why I create art.

It is for the joy, the bliss, and the self empowerment.  My friends online that have a course called “Art Empowers Me” and  a taste of it can be had at http://artempowersme.com .  Melissa Dinwiddie and Cory Huff are about to kick off this class that is all about artists becoming viable, professional, self sustaining and abundant artists.   I offer the link because I have observed what they have and think it worthwhile.  If you are an artist and find yourself blundering through the online morass, trying to make sense of it all and have it work for you, then “Art Empowers Me” may well be for you.

If you just want to look at wonderful, inspiring and awesome creativity try http://ebsqart.com  for the fun of it, or for the spiritual buzz of it.   All the art you see here, with exception of “Sunkist Trio” which of course is mine (the blurry flowers with the frumpy gray sweatshirt background), were found within the pages of EBSQ, and are all from artists I spent hours thumbing through their portfolios!  I of course I invite you to try both of the links herein and make your own assessment.

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Changes In The Wind

Posted September 10, 2011 by cilipower
Categories: art, fiber art

Tags: , ,

I only have a vague understanding of what changes I am about to embark upon.  I do know however that changes are needed.  You see, I am not merely talking about my art here for the kicks I get out of bringing my little lovelies to your attention, now don’t get me wrong, it is definitely a kick!  It is not enough, however.  I am attempting to become an abundant thriving artist with self-sufficiency!  I have been enjoying dialogue with just such artists who are sharing ideas with me and other emerging artists.  This dialogue is helping me to understand just how much work I have ahead of me to become organized in my efforts to become an artist with true earning potential.

I am thinking of myself as a nice tight little rosebud.  I wait impatiently to burst outward, to spread my tender petals for the sun and rain to kiss.  I wait to reach the full glory of self in the maturity of achievement, of full blossoming!  There before me is effort, the push of petals unfolding, the striving of reaching ever toward the warmth of rays.  With self at last poised to drink the dew.

My work is for sale.  I only have a vague idea at this point how I will manage the logistics of selling my work.  How much I will ask for each piece is another thing that is fuzzy.  Not a great way to go about being a business person.  So I have work to do.  First thing I will be changing is phasing my blog into a web site.  I am not sure how I am going to manage doing it, not many centavos rattling around in the pockets for such things as yet.  If I want to wait till after the first of the year, my girl promised me we will get it done.  Never was a very good waiter, I will find a way to get things together so I can actually sell online.  It is a clear goal.  Another thing I have not been real good at, goal making.  Just writing all this down and publishing my thoughts is a real good attempt at goal making!  Whoohoo!  If you have any thoughts on the subject, they are welcome, no, encouraged!

These people I have been consulting are very helpful, I offer a link to their sites if anyone has similar issues and would like some coaching towards becoming self-sufficient artists.  I am not there yet, but as I have been listening and reading their thoughts for a bit, I have faith with their help..  They are Melissa Dinwiddie melissadinwiddie.com , and Mark Huff theabundantartist.com.  They are both very positive successful artists, and very dedicated to the idea of debunking the “starving artist” concept.  Yea!  Of course coaching is a business for them, however they also offer a large amount of free advise, and encouragement, otherwise I would be unable to avail myself to their words of debunkishness.  Yea!  You Go Melissa and Mark!  Know that you are greatly appreciated!

I am going to get some rest now, I have abundant research to do in order to become abundant!  Later Gater!

Been Busy Knotting

Posted September 5, 2011 by cilipower
Categories: art, fiber art, Fiber Sculpture

Tags: , , , ,

 

I must explain that I am too excited to wait for really good pictures of my newest addition to me garden!  I just finished my second Reclamation  Art piece!  The first was an extra virgin olive oil bottle, I love the green glass and the shape of the bottle.  I knotted a free form filigree shape around the bottle with beads made out of stripped copper wire.  In this bottle I had a knotted arrangement of four flowers and loads of foliage.  It was in a Reclamation Art Show at Alley Cat Artists in Ellensburg, WA, and brought me some very nice compliments from people who came to the show.  Unfortunately I have no pictures of that piece yet.

Now I have for your dubious viewing pleasure are some sneek peek pictures of my new bouquet taken by my web cam.  The quality is blurry but good enough to get the idea.  Better pictures will come as soon as I can get them made.  It does show the basics enough, that hopefully one can apply a little imagination to get some of the details ok.

The front view of the flowers in the neck of the liquid smoke bottle.  I am guessing that there have been worse pictures posted of people’s creative projects, but I don’t think any could be much worse.  Oh, well! I for one am going to stop making excuses for the picture quality, because I love these flowers!  Following will be a side view of  the flowers, and a front and rear view of the macrame covered bottle. 

I discovered that with the flowers stuck in the neck of the bottle it was a bit top-heavy, so I loaded up a bunch of some nice ceramic beads to give it some counter balance.  It worked like a charm.  I will find something to replace it, like some small pebbles because I want the beads, lol.  Here is the last view of the work on the bottle.  Though the quality of these are far from studio art quality, they at least afford me the opportunity to show off my newbie!

I could have looked around to find a better thing to prop between myself and the art to make a better looking background, but I have been up all night knotting, and wanted to get this blog to press!  Haha!  So you get the frumpy look to go with my lovely flowers, maybe the

look will give my lovelies a little more impact because of the frumpiness!  Yea!  I promise I will get far better images of my work, minus the grey frumpy ghost, ASAP!  A friend and fellow art poster said to me I should not be so appologetic about using my web cam.  Ok, wysiwyg.

Thanks for joining in my fun, and I hope you understand the eagerness on my part to share despite the less than professional (understatement) imagery.  Hmmmm….what shall I call it?  “Sunkist” maybe, or how about “Trio”.  Ahh. “Sunkist Trio”, yes that is it!  Thank you for your help, you just sat there and let me bounce this off you, and you helped with the naming of this piece!  “Sunkist Trio.”  Perfection!

If you live in or near Ellensburg and would like to see my work up close, please contact me here, and we could set up a meeting over coffee, though my transportation is limited to Hopesource or Central Transit, a meeting would need to be close to me or arranged for a Tuesday if in Yakima.  Thank You    cilipower@yahoo.com

“Sunset O’er Me Garden”

Posted August 28, 2011 by cilipower
Categories: art, fiber art, Fiber Sculpture, Wall Hangings

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I have played around with the title to this one many times, variations x umpteen.  “Sunset O’er My Garden” wins.

This is the next piece I knotted after “Fran’s Flowers” and I wanted to do something a bit brighter.  Yup, got that one down, yes I did.  While I love the subtle color scheme in my sister’s “Fran’s Flowers”, I also have a side to me that loves glorious, riotous, saturated and blazing color!  Well, this one doesn’t really blaze, but it is a bit riotous.

When you click on this picture to enlarge it you will see four flowers, each distinctly different from the other.  At the time I was getting my experimenting on!  Actually every piece is experimental, and I hope I always feel that they are, because I want to keep that feeling of wonder every time I find a new way to express my love of flowers.

I will admit to borrowing on the efforts of other’s a bit when I figure out new arrangements of my knots to emulate nature’s artistry.  I peruse the artistry of “painters of flowers” to gain inspiration, and structural understanding.  I actually could not do it with out the lovely paintings I have found online.  I could look at photographs all day long and not get the same inspiration.  As we know, photographs are abounding in detail, astounding and breathtaking, but too literal.  Another artist’s interpretation of the visual makes it seem more doable somehow.i

The flowers in this piece are all in embroidery floss.  The rest is seven different types of yarn.  The next piece I did after this one was a smaller piece done entirely in embroidery floss, and had around a dozen flowers on it.  I unfortunately do not have a picture of it, as I gifted it to the best friend of my granddaughter and she lives in another city.  Maybe I can get her mom to make a picture of it for me.  It was another experimental piece that I put on a complex smaller branch from our walnut tree, and it has not stood the test of time well.  The walnut branch became very dry, and it has broken a couple of times.  I have had similar problems with other pieces, but have been able to manipulate the work to accommodate the changes.  Uh, I faked it, till I made it, uh.

Last night I visited a website called EBSQ.  It is a place where artists self represent, showing their artwork to the world.  Patrons who wish to find something special for their walls or a gift for someone may peruse the site for free and link up with artists without owing any fees to the site.  Artists however pay for the opportunity, but the fees for membership are very reasonable.  Fees range from around $9 for one month, $89 for a year,  to $699 (I think that is the figure I saw) for lifetime membership.   For having a place to post one’s art among peers it seems very reasonable to me.  Each artist has an area where they post links to their websites, email, blogs, etc.  I spent hours looking at only one category of work, the one type of painting that I believe my work most closely parallels.  Sometimes my work is pure abstract, but when I do my florals or pictorials (as I like to call my “Solar Powered, Wind Assisted, Manually Operated Clothes Dryer”).  I also have a few other things that are representational, and recognizable as animal, or some such.  I am talking about this website for artists so others can learn about it and either make use of it for purchase, for sale or for simple enjoyment!  And there was some very fine work there.  I was particularly impressed by a lady Marcia Baldwin, her work is very fine, she paints many things and her Equine series strike a loving chord in my heart.  I have always had a deep abiding love of horses though had far to little actual experience knowing them.  She captures their wild nobility and intelligence in a way that is rare beauty.  Thank you Marcia.  I have not yet left a comment to let her know my appreciation, but that is on my short list!  Thanks for letting me ramble on, Ta! Ta! Ha! Ha!

Here is a link to the art site:

EBSQ Self Representing Artists
http://www.ebsqart.com
Support Living Artists!

“Mountain Meadow”

Posted August 23, 2011 by cilipower
Categories: art, Fiber Sculpture, Wall Hangings

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Ahh!  Sit back, close your eyes, imagine you have just left the woods behind.  Ahead of you is the gentle rising slope of a lush meadow.  Insects buzz subliminally at the far reach of your hearing, the sun warm, but you are not hot because there is a soft breeze.  As you leave the last vestige of shade from the woods, walking up the side of the mountain, your sense of smell is assaulted on all sides by fragrances of wild flowers in full bloom.  Suddenly by your ear is a soft “zzzpht” then only the usual background sounds of insects.  Then again, the same sou  nd but a bit farther away!  You look around wildly trying to center on what you heard, but it escapes you.  Ok, calm down, you are not going nuts you tell yourself.

You walk a bit farther and suddenly there it is again off to your left a bit!  You zoom your focus in on where you heard the sound, and there above a lovely purple blossom is a fiery little hovering hummingbird!  You freeze!  Don’t move a muscle….!  You watch for a breathless full minute or so while the magical creature blesses you with its’ beauty, then as suddenly as it appeared, it is gone.  Only the occasional “zzzzpht” in your ears to let you know it is still around.

Once when I was in Alaska, in a place called Soapstone Cove, I was on the shore with my dog She-la, and had walked up into the trees that lined the soapstone cliffs.  It was like being in a cathedral there because all the trees branches grew away from the cliff face.  I sat on a rock looking around me,  absorbing the loveliness of the place when, “zzzpht” and “zzzzpht” back and forth all around me, but so quietly I almost thought I was hearing things!  Then suddenly hovering inches from my eyes was one of the loveliest apparitions ever.  Yes, you guessed it, you are sooo smart, yes, a humming-bird!  Giggle!  One of the more spiritual moments in my life, one I remember as clearly today as if it was moments ago!  And it was over 40 years ago!  Yuppers!

That is the kind of feeling I get when I look at this piece I call “Mountain Meadow”.  Soft and spiritual, and appreciative of the blessing that my hands afford me when I make something like this.  I certainly feel all warm and fuzzy just talking about how this piece makes me feel.

I would love to share my gift with others, of course I would also love to supplement my income with my gift as well.  As an artist I have given my work to people across the years that gave me a blessing of kindness, or were kind to my children.  Once I had worked up a storm to build up a stock of items to sell somehow, (something I had never ventured before that date).  This was in Knoxville around 1980 and my husband had a job at the State Fair running the ferris wheel for a couple of weeks.  Well it was the first job he’d had for a while, and we had no money.  So I got the bright idea to stand in front of the gate to sell my work to take my three-year old son in to the fair.  Let me tell you that was one of the hardest things I ever did for money!  No one wanted to buy anything!  They were all going into the fair and wanted to spend their money in there!  I managed to sell enough by lowering my prices down to almost giving things away, plant hangers for $5, wall hangings as big as any I make today for as little as $10, oh the hours of work I sold dirt cheap!  But I got enough together to get myself and my son in the fair, we ate, and Victor got to ride some kiddie rides.  My purpose was accomplished, no regrets, but I never tried anything like that again.  Mostly my work has gone to gifts of appreciation!

My blog is a way to share my blessing with many, and today I managed to share a bit more of me than just my work.  Would that you could fall in love with an image of something that I have made with love flying from my fingers.  May I share a concept I love, and a poem I wrote for my Artist Statement.

I Knot Therefore I Am

When I was knee-high to a grasshopper

I heard somewhere along my knee-high path

Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery

My innate need for creative outflow

Is merely an attempt to flatter

The grasshopper’s Maker

by Cecilia Power

May God Bless

You may contact me directly if you wish at cilipower@yahoo.com and perhaps…..

 

 

Celebration! Dance to the Music!

Posted August 20, 2011 by cilipower
Categories: art, fiber art, Wall Hangings

Tags: , , , , , ,

My thanks to all that have chosen to read my blog and check out my art!  I believe this is my 20th post and I just broke 300 hits!  Now that doesn’t sound like a major success when the numbers on other more contemporary entertainment, science or community driven sites get hits in the thousands!  307 hits are KUDOS to me!

My chosen field of artistic pursuit is definitely outside the classical box and I wouldn’t have it any other way

Here is a piece I knotted over a year ago.  It is one of those rare pieces without any large focal beads.  Mostly I used small glass beads with three slightly larger striped glass beads on the beige strand of knots on the left and between dark red and dark brown ones.   The colors in the striped beads pick up the colors of the knotting very well.  I think I will call this one:  “Loop d’ Loop”.

I think I would like to make a series of pieces with swirls of loops draping in a plethora of different knotting styles, and patterns of bead accents.  This one was made after my daughter suggested something similar.  Only what she had imagined was more of a horizontal piece swirls of knotted strands to either side.  She drew me a sketch which I would like to make a closer approximation of.  Maybe the next one I start, maybe….

Here is the detail shot I have for this piece which I feel is important to have with each of the larger pictures of the whole pieces.  If all I worked with was the traditional “macrame materials” then the detail shots would be hardly needed because the knotting would be large enough to see in a regular shot.  However, I have avoided working with the usual stuff because it is too expensive, and common.  I have been using remnants from second-hand stores more than anything.  Yarns of many varying weights and textures.  Long ago I realized I loved working with the variety of remnant yarns.  That way I was using up the leftovers from other people’s projects, and it is an eco-nomic thing to do.  Ha!

I truly am having a great time talking about my work, and it is gratifying that I have had as many visitors to my blog as I have.  Should one find they could use an unusual twisty-loopy-one-of-a-kind-whimsy in their environment, I long to do something custom for a person who could appreciate it.  I can be contacted directly at the address below.  I could work from a photograph of the interior that is calling out for a complimentary piece of art or from a sketch of an idea.  But let me explain very succinctly, “I do not do Owls!”  Hehe, that has been my artist statement of sorts for years, with my tongue in cheek, and serious as a heart attack simultaneously!  cilipower@yahoo.com

$…negotiable.

Tourmaline Dream

Posted August 15, 2011 by cilipower
Categories: art, fiber art, Fiber Sculpture, Wall Hangings

Tags: , , , , , ,

Step into my “Tourmaline Dream”!  Haha!  I chose the name because I love watching Gem Shopping Network where I have learned so much about precious and semi precious gems.  Tourmaline is mined right here in the USA and comes in such a large variety of colors!  From cut stone to cut stone there might be a subtle difference, however it is enough changed to call each stone a different color.  There are so many shades of pink, green, blue-green, reds, and roses.  Then there are yellows, oranges, and in rare instances, purples.  The rich teal yarn in this wall hanging reminds me of the color tourmaline that I would love to have in a ring and it would look nice against my olive complexion.  Yeah, a nice big sparkly chunk of eye candy surrounded by lovely diamonds!  One can dream.  (Sigh!)

Speaking of color….I was trying for a defined segregation of the colors in “Tourmaline Dreams”.   I visualized a more pronounced expanse of solid teal, with a slab of black making a complete break between the teal and the beige.  However, I worried that such a large amount of black would not show well in a photo so I toned it down to black as accent instead.  I guess I need to experiment with using black more, perhaps using beads to bring out the details then take a shot of it to see how it works.

The positives I like are the way I got a lot of angular details by manipulating the colors.  There are also a couple of solid knotted angled features to contrast with all the soft curves of the piece made with the long stinnets of knots.  There are three light turquoise shell rings that  work well as contrasting elements, along with a cute little teardrop shaped carved picture jasper ring.  I do hope it shows up when you click on the picture that shows the whole piece.