Category Archives: Dark Moon Lodge

Spring Fever

Flapping About

Flapping About

I have been chasing spring these past few weeks, trying to catch up to Mother Nature’s coming out party wherever she may be making her debut.  Spring has been an elusive Diva, managing to stay always a few steps ahead of me.

In my wandering, I felt fortunate to spend some time where I was able to take early morning walks around a tranquil pond. The little oasis was frequented by area wildlife, including a rather large flock of Canadian geese, a family of ducks, numerous turtles, and a graceful, white egret.  I have more photos than I care to count of the geese and the ducks.  There are quite a few of the turtles sunning themselves, tucked close together on a fallen tree trunk. I even have several of the egret, though it was a tad camera shy.

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron

One visitor to the pond was not as easy to capture – a Great Blue Heron.  I spotted him moving in the underbrush of the little island that sits in the center of the bowl, with about 50 yards of water between us. I moved along the curving rim of my shoreline, stepping slowly and as soundlessly as possible. He stepped cautiously in and out of the trees, always seeming to duck behind a broad trunk, moving out of the circle of my camera lense each time I thought I had a good shot. The best I got was this blurred image (he is holding a fish in his beak).

A few days ago, I left the lodgings on the edge of the little pond to set up camp a bit further south, still seeking the sunshine and warm weather I crave.  As soon as the stakes were pounded in and my lights were strung along the front of my traveling gypsy wagon I went for my customary lay-of-the-land walk.  There is always much to see when walking past the compact, wheeled homes of fellow travelers, each adorned (or not) to reflect the personalities of the occupants.

While I was gawking at colored lights, wind chimes, wind and sun catchers, and other yard ornaments including customary bird statuary (mostly, but not limited to, plastic flamingos) I came nearly beak to bellybutton with a very much living and breathing Great Blue Heron. After all the time spent stalking another that was clearly not ready for his close up, here was this bold bird standing right in front of me – and me without my camera!

Sometimes the things we chase seem stubbornly elusive, evading our best attempts to grasp and hold tight. I have traveled from the top of the country to it’s near bottom point in my pursuit of warm, spring weather and still it eludes me – a reminder that the law of attraction might be powerful but it does not override the laws of nature.

Laying the groundwork to achieve goals is all well and good. Still, we cannot forget that all things take time and sometimes we have to pause in our pursuit to let time unfold in its natural course. To everything there is a season.

But, like the Blue Heron who stepped to within my arm’s reach reminds me, we must always be prepared for the opportunity when it comes knocking on our door.

I’m off for my morning walk – this time with my camera.

If you are ready to start pursuing your purpose, passion and pizzazz in the second half
of life, join me,
the MAD Goddess, and your sister seekers in the Dark Moon Lodge
(password: darkmoon).
We are moving through the seasons of the year in a course of
personal development and life enrichment;
one step at a time using intentional
creativity in the Art of Self Expression© See you there!


The Art of Self Expression

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Winter Dream

I have to admit, retiring from the 30 mile commute that used to begin my work day has gone a long way toward helping me appreciate the quiet beauty of winter in my northern realm. Listening to the wind roaring down the chimney, while sitting all cozy-comfy next to the fireplace working from my laptop is not so bad.

Watching dawn break on a light but steady snowfall I can’t help but feel at peace. It’s a perfect day for sipping jasmine tea (my favorite) and creating some art.

One of the best things about art journals is their flexibility and portability. I can create art with nothing more than my journal and a pencil or pen.

On days when I’m feeling the urge to create, but I’m not feeling ambitious enough for easels, brushes, water containers, paints and mess making – I can reach for my colored pencils, crayons and markers. When even those tools are not inspiring me, scissors, glue and some old magazines will do.

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Mixed Media Collage

All this is to say, your art is what you make it – you being the key ingredient. For those of you who have entered the Dark Moon Lodge to experience the  art of self expression, it doesn’t matter so much what you put on your pages, just that you create the pages. Scribble, finger paint, doodle or cut and paste – it’s all about you.

This page began with the photo of flowers cut from a magazine and glued to the page. I had a poem I’d torn from an old book (don’t panic, I purchase books in very poor condition for this purpose). Before gluing it down, I turned it over to see what was on the other side – low and behold, it was exactly what I wanted to express that day. This often happens and I’m never sure if it’s just coincidence or something more.

I added a watercolor wash around the cutouts using water soluble crayons. I went over the flowers and leaves using colored pencils, then emphasized with black Pitt Pen marker, To give it some depth, I sponged on green & gold paint using a paper doily as a stencil.

On days when I do have my water containers, brushes and paints out, and I already have a big mess on my hands, I’ll often prep pages to use for art journaling. Any time I squeeze too much paint onto my pallet, rather than letting it dry up and go to waste, I use it to make backgrounds for future journal pages – even if all I do is scrub it onto the page with a brush or my fingers. I even clean excess paint out of my brushes this way. It doesn’t always have to be a background; I may cut or tear pieces of it for collage elements.

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Finger Painting

This began as random, overlapping handprints (acrylic paint) on a wet surface that I’d previously painted with gesso and let dry. I used a bright pink Sharpie to make outlines of the patterns I saw. It looks very floral to me.

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Bubble Paint

This technique came from an activity with my grandchildren. I tinted bubble solution using food coloring, and we spent the afternoon blowing bubbles onto paper.

So,  what do you feel like expressing today?


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