Spring Offerings PostcardApril 17, 2010 at the Tecopa Basin Artist Group Gallery
This is a photo from about the mid-to-late nineties, one of those days crisp with serenity and synchronicity. It is of a small shallow cataract in the stream of hot springs water on its way to the desert basin. My children played in it when they were younger.
I was told it is called "Squaw Hole" and it was the first and frequently a spot where I took my kids and friends to camp over many years. Things seem to have changed a bit elsewhere, yet this spot still remains a location for me to present "offerings" each time I come out to the springs. I offer to the spirit of the springs and thank all spirits and all the ancestors that have maintained these springs and thank them for the many blessings I've received and petition, mostly, for happiness for all and world peace. I do wishbones and lit candled birthday cakes too.
Offering to the Spring
This photo records an offering made at Tecopa Hot Springs, Squaw Hole Jan. 20, 2010. The painting of the path of the labyrinth was floated into the hole and allowed to travel the current. I pick up trash when I visit the spring even tho I left this, sorta, meaningful clutter when I was there. It was painted on hand dyed Chinese wheat or rice hull paper, with traditional Sumi practices. Other offerings were made and seem to have synchronized with some continuing healing episodes. Have you been feeling better lately? Come to the art show, join us and see the rest.
Winter Solstice '08, photoshopShaman's Eye
This picture records an event that inspires in me a belief that there are lessons in the earth and heavens to teach us how to be better humans, more in harmony with our mother.
I'm anticipating the likelihood that this print will be included in the show, actually, I've already had it printed. A visit to Shaman's Eye on Winter Solstice is one of the reasons I come out to Tecopa: to participate in terrestrial and celestial events.
Moon Set Over Tecopa Basin
Great waiting place for the moon or anyone who happens to be there. So many have passed this way. So many have been lulled by the murmur of the waters of Squaw Hole at Tecopa.
OK, this is what I'm doing now; and will continue to do until and after the show on April 17. I plan to put on a workshop, exhibit in concurrence with the show. I'll be using the concept of actuating art within a retreat setting; combining shamanic, meditative and transformative passages while in the present, welcoming the conformative and the inquisitive for time sharing. These workshops will not be an adventure to be satisfied, but a concurrence for those who are interested in participating in actuation rituals, and without expectations. What the hell else do we have to do, or can we do? You might think you are busy, but doing anything is doing something. At some point, we will try "spirit ways."
This type of painting is based on an Oriental tradition of painting with hand ground ink and brush on paper. The Japanese word for this type of painting is Sumi. I learned this practice of painting as a ritual of discipline. This brush stroke was painted on the paper in one motion without rigid determination. It was "allowed" to paint.
I later practiced making the path of the labyrinth in just one brush stroke. As in Oriental traditions, I still have many years of practice ahead of me.
Old paintings surface in Tecopa
I had been visiting Tecopa Hot Springs with family and friends for over ten years when the kids all grew up and friends got kinda bored with just "mellowing out." I had already connected with the Spirits of the Springs and wanted to continue the practice of making offerings there. Most of my actuations were temporal, burned or given to the earth. But, once I began to revitalize my own interests in art (after twenty years of teaching), by joining the California Arts Project, I responded to the direction that art teachers not neglect their own practices. I was inspired to do art actuations and more artifactual productions and creations, many of which were meant to be absorbed into the landscape or location.
This picture is of some of the original sumi paintings I did one trip when it was raining. I wanted to do this work with the intent of saving it and seeing how the pulp quality paper would absorb the salts of the desert as well as react to rainwater and added metallic elements, clays and salts washed off of the rocks that were used to hold the paper down over a 16-18 hour period while I did the work. Originally, I let the paper dry out after the rain. I wasn't in the practice of photographing these kind of events so I put them out on the same place they were painted 15 years ago (not the same order). Although it is a series, each of the images has its own nature and spirit message for each of us and I'll let them speak to you if you ever get a chance to see them. Pictures of them don't even come close to showing the texture and subtle color and potentially corrosive events. I'll frame one up for the show.
You may have seen this in the "Evidence" Show. It was the "Desert Fingerprint" or "evidence" of someone doing something out in the desert. So, I kinda connected to this evidence of human endeavor and creation and I frequently enjoy the participation in the concept. I am currently working on some sumi paintings of this concept.
Sorry, this is not snow, although it does snow out here, this is just my contrast and saturation work on the Photoshop tools of the computer.
Loading Docks Tecopa
Will be in the show printed a little large, cuz I think it would look kinda cool real large but the gallery is not real big so, most of the work will be kept at a more intimate size except for the original works. So, getting busy.
This photo was taken back on the Winter Solstice '09 when JA and I went on a photo journey. I liked the look of the "Labyrinth" pic so kinda matched the high contrast, desaturated it and stretched it for emphasis. It could be available in other versions, too.
Rock on Paper in Rain, sample #2
One of several prints made from the January, '10 event. I watched and waited for the forecast of this storm, rode the So-Westerlies out to Tecopa and the passing storm winds back. This is a photoshop arrangement of one of the many actuations. I'm getting even more ideas from these actuations and will watch for the next storm to head out to this desert retreat.
Rock on Paper in Rain sample #4
You see an image made by photoshoped manipulation of a digital picture made of a rock on a paper in the rain. The paper, in this case, is a hand dyed, Chinese rice hull or wheat paper, having been painted with sumi ink and then had water color pen color lining the labyrinth design then allowed to bleed in the rain water environment on a particular date and at a particular time of which records are kept in my journals. The following photo will explain.
Example of work-in-progress
This is the un-doctored original photo from which I take selections and work them into designs, textures and concepts representing this actuation of intent. In this case, the intent was an actuation for ritual, offerings focusing on healings for those that need healing whenever encounters are made with this work. My thoughts are especially with the victims of the Haitian earthquake but also all artists who need healing to continue with their work of healing our world.
Actual contact is not required. The actual healing is already taking place and the spirits say we need to continue to do more actuations with intent for our healing.
Spirit Dialogue, from paintingPhotoshop enhanced, sumi painting with watercolor in rain actuation
I hope you don't get too bored by these labyrinth paintings. They actually are only a small part of the total work going into the show. But, at least for now, they are playing an important role as I get closer to completing the work of putting this show together. I have one more retreat in the offing and will do some final work at that time, then the show. This image may become a small poster-size image for those who express an interest in it. The original will be available at the show. It is not as "glare-y" or color saturated as this pic shows, but nice and intimate at 8.5x11 size.
Remote Offerings, photoshopOriginal photo of Rock on Paper in Rain, photoshop enhanced
I had painted many pictures of the path of the labyrinth while at Tecopa in January this year and still have many to use in actuation activities. On Feb. 8th and 9th, at my home in Redlands CA. we had a nice rain event. I have a friend who was in immediate need of some healing rituals so I did some "remote offerings" to the spirits of the springs. These were done with intent and I photographed the process. This image is the result of the photographing and I then watched the rainstorms drift north east from Redlands and I hope made it to the springs to carry this ritual to completion. My friend called today and he sounds very much better. Thank you healing spirits and please continue for all in need of healing.
Circadian Labyrinth DesignLayered photoshop enhanced photos and images from the internet.
OK, this is actually a bit on the serious side. I know I've borrowed some internet images of the brain from somewhere, so if you recognize the origins, I'll gladly give credit, stop using it, or give royalties if anyone has any interest in giving me money for a copy if this. Otherwise, this image is not meant to be part of the Spring Offerings Show other than in this posted message.
We are finding ourselves in an increasingly serious situation in our world and in our lives. We all need healing, the world needs healing. Things aren't working well. Yet, we mustn't let exploitation of our fears of the unknown influence our judgment. Just our "heart-felt" feelings aren't enough. We must ask ourselves what has "God" given us in our intelligent being, our brain, that can help us solve some of our problems?
This image is meant to draw attention to the "seat of the soul," the pineal gland. It is this inner, creator source of each individual where true change, evolution and salvation for the world will be initiated (actually is being initiated right now). This center of our brain, the "third eye," the gateway to the new world and transformed consciousness will be the trigger for the Harmonic Convergence prediction that we will become "light beings." Ready yourselves for this event. It is not the end of the world, but the beginning of a new.
Take the path of the labyrinth to the center of the brain. Center yourself, meditate, pray, actuate your intent for a better world. It may not mean you get rich, forget all that materialism, competition and meritocracy are the sources of greed and mistrust. Get over it! It is wrong for anyone to try to take it all. Let's move on to a more cooperative, enlightened world of helping one another.
This is just included to show you and introduce you to the concept that I go out to Tecopa and do artwork in my camper. While I am doing these sumi ink-brush paintings of the "Path of the Labyrinth," I lay them out on the only large flat (sometimes) surface available, my cab-over bed. The sun begins to shine in the side window and sometimes warms me into a lazy slumber. I doze, I wake, I meditate, I paint. At this time the bed is being used to dry ink paintings. So, I recorded it. Tom and Pam and I shared some great conversations about spirit work on this last trip, March 3rd to the 10th. They too are most aware and interested in moving in the direction of a more peaceful and harmonious world that acknowledges spirit ways. Let's show our intent and participate in healing actuations.
It was about 5:00 PM on March 9th when the sun was going down and shining in my camper window. It fully illuminated my work table top and I was mesmerized by the luminosity of the paper. I actually paid no attention to the shadow, but most thoroughly followed the path of the brush each time I painted. I found new understandings about being a participant in these actuations.
This is for our healings. We love, we accept the love and we are healed. That is what this is all about. We do this, we heal ourselves, the world is healed. Just because we are being selected to do this demonstration of healing does not diminish its truth. Ok, let's be healed and move on to the real reasons we've been born into this life, this is just what we do.
On the last day of my most recent retreat to Tecopa Hot Springs Resort, this meditation preceded my attention to the labyrinth. The sun was going down and shining through my camper window, up where it shines on my over-cab bed through a clear plastic colored "darma-seal" from the early new age movement. It is a sun mandala with a rainbow array of concentric circles around it. It just happened to be shining on one of the paintings of the path of the labyrinth when I got my camera. This was what I was hoping for: a sign of y/our healing.
Alaignment of the Labyrinth to Squaw Hole
March 9, 2010, 5:30 PM. Just an inference of the alignment of the center of the labyrinth to the direct location of Squaw Hole. I tried to show the arrangement by using the highlighting of selected ovals and some lavender color layers. I guess eventually I'll get into a mention of all the amethyst connections. Anyway, I was motivated to emphasize this relationship. Many people are connecting to the infusion of spirit in our daily lives through the occurrences of synchronicity and our choice to practice actualization through time-tunneling. Why not? The answers appear when least expected but most obviously believable. Why not?
OK. I may be going a little too far with this image. It is a composite of a lot of photoshop stuff; all original. The hole is Squaw Hole and it has the image of the clay labyrinth superimposed over it. Then the background is an image I've been playing with. When you're in a cave trying to take pictures with a flash, the camera does not focus well. I was trying to take a picture of the ore markings in the wall of Noonday Mine in Tecopa and the camera captured many sparkles in the ore but the wall of the cave was out of focus. This is contrast and darkening with some dodging and burning to bring out the colors. The sparkles are the result of the flash of the camera on the crystals in the cave wall. I don't know, . . . something about metaphors for convergence.
Ink Box and Stacked Labyrinths in Dharma Glow
This is one of the post actuation photoshop prints made from various elements that have gone into the Labyrinth Project. The pictures were taken during my last trip to Tecopa, March 3rd to the 10th, as I completed the preparations for the show. I was feeling some successes in the Sumi/Path of the Labyrinth sessions. This also, is one of the available prints that will be among the "spin art" bins at the show. I will have many single prints and original sumi labyrinths for attendees to buy that will be reasonable and plentiful for your choice and appreciation.
Orange Circle with Labyrinth
Although this is only a photoshop composite of a collage of an Orange Circle (to be featured in its original form in the show), and the blue labyrinth that is a copy of a selected path-of-the-labyrinth meditation, I just liked it. This poster image represents a combination of images that show the relationship between the collage as a retreat meditation from about fifteen years ago, and a more recent meditation performed with the sumi brush and ink. I printed one of these for the spin-art bin in the show.
The Dark Labyrinth
This is not a painting. It is a photoshop image made from one of the Path of the Labyrinth meditations with the Dharma Seal design projected on the painting while the sun shines through the window of my camper on the bed where the painting is drying. Then the Sun Mandala design is enhanced with hue manipulation and exaggerated contrast. The original sumi painting of just the path, without the color projected on it, exists and will be shown as is a simple black sumi brush stroke on white paper. The question for the viewer at the show, will be, "Does the painting alone, give the impression of 'The Dark Labyrinth'?"
But, again, I think the image is very expressive of just how I saw the concept, at the time. Also, it will continue to exist as a print available for purchase at small, med. or large size.
Time is Art Labyrinth
Maybe no explanation is sufficient. You might need to see the show to "get it." Otherwise, this is totally personal and one of those indulgences that Artists take, when we want.
But, some folks who have seen this kinda like it too.