Archive for the 'creativity' Category

The Art of Emotional Resilience

April 17, 2014

 Last week I had some art therapy fun while visiting Wisconsin again.  My first stop was a return to Edgewood College in Madison to spend some creative time with Janice Havlena and her students (ECATS- Edgewood College Art Therapy Students). Since my last visit to Edgewood’s campus in 2011, the art therapy department is now part of a brand new building (The Stream!), which includes an amazing papermaking and mixed media studio inside and a beautiful view of Lake Wingra outside.

edgewoodbuilding

During this visit, I facilitated an art-making workshop with the ECATS focused on making a mini book of strengths.  Janice had a great stash of abandoned art slides, which we re-purposed into an accordion style book. The plastic slide mount surface was also perfect to introduce the joy of playing with alcohol inks!  :)

edgewood1

edgewood2

If you want to learn more about how to create your own accordion slide mount book, check out this past post.

slidebook4

Identifying a variety of strengths were explored on the altered “pages” of the slide mounts , inspired by these Signature Strengths.  Remembering and activating our strengths can be a helpful way to empower us in times of challenge and distress.

It was awesome to witness the student’s books take form with these positive reminders.  Many thanks to Janice and all the students for hanging out and making art together!

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After my visit at Edgewood College, I headed to Milwaukee to attend this year’s Spring Art Therapy Symposium, The Image Has It: Art, Practice, and the Brain at Mount Mary University, also sponsored by the Wisconsin Art Therapy Association.  The Symposium’s keynote featured Lukasz Konopka, MD & Chris Belkofer PhD, ATR-BC who spoke about their neuroscience research and its implications for art therapy.

I also attended a variety of other inspiring art therapy presentations from Noel L’Esperance, Lori Mackey, Lynn Kapitan, and Bruce Moon…

mmusymposium

I was excited to be able to offer a workshop introducing trauma-informed themes, prompts, and the use of art journaling as a safe, contained space for nurturing and strengthening emotional resilience.  We made mini-art journals (also an accordion book style!) to safely contain inside a matchbox to explore the importance of social support and community:

SafePassageArtJournal

groupSafePassage

If you want to create your own mini matchbox art journal, here’s a simple how to PDF that you can download and print out:

artjournalmatchox

I really had a nice time while in Wisconsin on these art therapy adventures!  I’ve returned with new inspiration and energy, which is always a great win-win!

******

More Inspiration & Resources!

On Resilience, Strengths and Gratitude [Art Journal Pages]

Self-Care through Creative Practice & Intention: Affirmation

Happy Artist’s Life Art Journaling and More Creative Goodness

Giving Your Dream Wings through Creative Practice

April 7, 2014

“…Those with imagination have wings…”

It’s an honor to be part of Andrea Schroder’s special Blog Hop launching this week…..

Give Your Dreams Wings | creativity in motion

The Give Your Dream Wings Blog Hop is a peek inside the process of how inspiring people make the magic happen. We’ve got some of the internet’s most inspiring bloggers sharing how they give their dreams wings – what they do that supports, nurtures and encourages their tender dreams to come to life. This is happening in celebration of the new e-course of the same name by Andrea of the Creative Dream Incubator.

The Give Your Dream Wings e-course shows you how to nurture and grow YOUR dream, for free, in only 10 minutes a day. You do not have to wait until you have more time or money! Click here to find out about the free e-course, and to read the other (super inspiring!) posts in this Blog Hop.

For me, creating art in the form of visioning collages, revo’lution making, or spending dedicated time on my 365 project has helped bring clarity, energy, and inspiration to those intentions & dreams I want to collectively manifest/receive/return in my life, work, and relationships.

3x5 365

3×5 365

As this year’s 3×5 365 project heads towards Day 100 this week, I am excited about this milestone (all over again)!

Give Your Dream Wings | creativity in motion

3×5 365 :: Day 75

Tending to this creative process everyday- whether it is 10 minutes, 30, or whatever amount of time I have- is important to me… and worth it for overall well-being, growth, and understanding.

Give Your Dream Wings | creativity in motion

3×5 365 :: Day 94

I continue to enjoy witnessing these artful, soulful messages surface for reflection and as a guide for my dream-filled adventures!

******

Related Posts:

The Altered Image: Ready to Create & Fly

Ready for Revolution Art Journaling eBook Now Available

Flying Free: Encourage, Wonder, Learn

 

The Joy of Art Abandonment

April 3, 2014

I was very excited to finally receive the new book, The Art Abandonment Project : Create and Share Random Acts of Art by Michael deMeng and Andrea Matus deMeng this week after promptly pre-ordering it back in February as soon as I read about it via this 14 Secrets Challenge.   (Thanks Lani!)

Wow! So much creative goodness fills this book’s pages!

The Abandonment Art Project

The Abandonment Art Project

Art Abandonment has a simple concept (but is so much more!) : to make art and leave these art expressions or creative happenings behind in various public spaces & places for others (to hopefully) discover and find.  Often these random acts of art share (but not limited to) visual and written messages of kindness, encouragement, and hope.  Art made for abandonment serves as a creative offering that extends beyond our individual artist self, but instead serves others, strangers, communities, and the universe.

This book is an inspiring how to guide about the wonderful purposes behind art abandonment, what it means to become an art abandoneer, ideas & examples of  art abandonment projects & challenges, helpful material and location considerations, as well as the meaningful and joyful impact art abandonment can have on those who stumble upon its gift.  Colorful photos of abandonment art and lovely testimonials from project participants and recipients also add to the book’s contents.  If you are interested in joining the Art Abandonment movement and meeting other Art Abandoneers, learn more about Michael deMeng’s Facebook group.

I’m looking forward to introducing & recommending this book’s creative goodness to participants involved in 6 Degrees of Creativity’s Random Acts of Art Adventure, as well as The Creative Deed Project.  It is a perfect companion for enhancing our creative fun and art journeys.  I hope keep sharing more inspired by this book!

*****

Related Posts:

14 Secrets Challenge: Adventure Supplies & Guerrilla Art for the Soul

26 Paper Hearts

Operation Random Acts of Creative Kindness

Creating a Self Regulation Comfort Kit >> Relaxation Bottle

March 17, 2014

Over the last few months, I’ve been researching and collecting different sensory based activities and ideas (mostly on Pinterest) to support self-regulation and creative ways to foster relaxation in children & adolescents.  My long term goal is to create some kind of comfort kit that includes a variety of these hands on tools that I can use in my group work with school age youth impacted by trauma.

For more information about self-regulation, trauma, and children, check out these posts:

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I’ve started to move from the “collecting ideas phase” to the “making & experimentation phase”, embarking on trying out these ideas myself to see how they might work.

My first self-regulation comfort kit accessory I’ve started to work on and play with is a Relaxation Bottle. I became inspired by this idea through discovering this helpful post. I thought this type of relaxation bottle could be a soothing and fun way for group members to calm their minds and bodies, as well as help bring their attention to the here and now through focusing on the inside of the bottle.

I gathered these simple supplies: A plastic bottle, extra fine glitter, glitter glue, and clear tacky glue.

Creating a Self Regulation Comfort Kit >> Relaxation Bottle | creativity in motion

Then I followed these steps to make my prototype:

  • Fill the plastic bottle 3/4 full with hot tap water
  • Add glitter glue, loose extra fine glitter, and about half a bottle of clear tacky glue

The combination of the glitter glue and clear tacky glue creates a sparkly solution for the fine loose glitter to gently dance in. It is important the water you use to fill the bottle with is hot, as this will melt the glitter glue and will prevent clumping inside the bottle.

Group members could first release some physical energy through helping shake the bottle and then watch the glitter slowly settle to the bottom of the bottle. Discussing the impact of this activity in relationship to the youth’s body and awareness of sensations they experienced would also be interesting to learn more about (and express through art!).

 A helpful final touch will include making sure the bottle’s cap is permanently attached with some kind of superglue to keep the solution from getting out!

Creating a Self Regulation Comfort Kit >> Relaxation Bottle | creativity in motion

Having done this first test run, I think my next attempt will try a slightly smaller plastic bottle (it would be cool to have individual bottles for each group member to use), as well as include more glitter glue to make the solution inside a little thicker (I used a smaller sized bottle), but overall… the relaxation bottle idea was fun to make and I think will make a great addition to the toolkit I’m creating.

I will keep you posted on other self-regulation comfort kit accessories I try out as this experimentation phase continues!

*****

Related Posts:

Inspiration from the 2013 TLC Childhood Trauma Practitioner’s Assembly

My Trauma Informed Pinterest Board

Top 10: Impact of Trauma and Neglect on the Developing Child with Dr. Bruce Perry

Creative Planning: Mind Mapping

February 26, 2014

Below is my valuable mind mapping guide I’ve been using for creating this round of 6 Degrees of Creativity online workshops.

6 Degrees of Creativity Mind Mapping | creativity in motion

Creative Planning: Mind Mapping

Over the last year, I’ve started to use this visual technique to organize ideas and thoughts and have found it super helpful for projects, meetings or presentations, and things I need help in better understanding or making sense of. Simply said in this article from LifeHacker, “a mind map is basically a diagram that connects information around a central subject.”

The article’s author Melanie Pinola describes mind mapping is way more than “just note-taking” and “can help you become more creative, remember more, and solve problems more effectively.”  She recommends that mind mapping can be used for an endless amount of thought related, learning, or planning activities.

One of the benefits she highlights is that creating this type of visual tool combining images and words can “be more memorable and enjoyable to create and review“.  Pinola also points out the value of the Picture Superiority Effect: “the combination of words and pictures is six times better for remembering information than words alone“:

For my 6 Degrees of Creativity mind mapping fun above, the 6 workshops surround and reach out from the center with all their different parts….ranging from idea content, art making prompts, intention, PDF and video resources, as well as ways for participants to engage this workshop community.

Creating this in visual form was fun to organize everything (to focus on in pieces, as well as a whole) and provided clarity on the purpose of each workshop space.

It’s nice to see what is on paper now ready in virtual form.  Lots more creative goodness begins here this week to artfully enjoy together during the rest of the year– Yay!

*****

Resources:

How to Use Mind Maps to Unleash Your Brain’s Creativity and Potential

Mind Mapping for Positive Health

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Related Posts:

Creative Goodness Alert: Spotlight on 6 Degrees of Creativity Workshops

Self Care through Creative Practice & Intention: Anchoring

Inspiration from the 2013 TLC Childhood Trauma Practitioner’s Assembly

Things I Remembered: Looking Back with Some Creative Clarity

February 23, 2014

Throughout this month I’ve been reflecting on some of my past art journaling and creative work from the last couple or so years…

Things I Remembered: creativity in motion

#thingsiremembered: circa 2012 revo’lution making

That’s one of the awesome things about art expression, it is a tangible & visual record that the artist can look back on at any moment in time. Often the process of looking back on a series of creative work can reveal new discoveries or provide clarity that can now be seen in a different light or perspective.

In this tinybudda post about [writing] journaling tips for growing, healing, and thriving (which I think I’ve posted here before!), author Loran Hills shares:

“Reading back through my journals has helped me reflect on where I used to be and where I am now in my life. It’s a method of allowing the light of understanding and compassion to shine on my past.”

I agree!

You can learn more about the benefits of looking back (and going forward!) here.

On a “things I forgot” (related) note: In a moment of material sorting and organizing this week-end, I also discovered some art that had been lost & forgotten- buried underneath a stash of art stuff I threw in the closet of my creative space probably about a year ago.

The piece was a little crumpled and disheveled, but it was a super nice discovery to be re-united with it again. With care, I took it to my Smashbook and taped it to one of the pages. Ahhhh…. a safe home. Finally where it belongs. How refreshing to look at it now with fresh eyes and some breathing space… What was lost is now found.

Things I Remembered: Looking Back with Some Creative Clarity

Lost & Found

How have you used looking back on your creative expression as a way to grow?

*****

Related Posts:

ready for revo’lution twentytwelve

twentytwelve revo’lution book reflection

Prepare > Intent > Create > Transform: ready for revo’lution [2014]

My 3×5 365 Art Adventure …in Progress…

February 16, 2014

My  3x5 365 Art Adventure ...In Progress... | creativity in motion

February’s 3×5 365 art adventure is half way through this month and the project is approaching the day 50 milestone later this week. Woo hoo!

Here are some random snapshots of Days 32 through 47:

My 3x5 365 Art Adventure ...In Progress... | creativity in motion

I’ve been having fun mixing in some paint pens (metallic and white) along with distressed paint, stain, & ink.  I’ve also been adding a little more washi tape here and there.

My 3x5 365 Art Adventure ...In Progress... | creativity in motion

Words included on these 3x5s have been a combination of dictionary pages/text, letter stamping, magazine collage,  word remnant rub transfer sheets & chitchat stickers. 

My 3x5 365 Adventure...In Progress... | creativity in motion

It is inspiring for me to see this month’s work (so far) all spread out as a group and witness what they have in common, their differences, and the energy that exists between each 3×5 space.

“We need to give each other the space to grow, to be ourselves, to exercise our diversity…We need to give each other space so that we may both give and receive such beautiful things as ideas, openness, dignity, joy, healing, and inclusion.”  ~Max de Pree

 

My 3x5 365 Art Adventure ...In Progress... | creativity in motion

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If you’re looking for some creative practice inspiration, this week’s post over at the 6 Degrees of Creativity blog features a sneak peek of the online offering Everyday Creativity, a virtual space opening on March 1 as part of this year’s 6 Degrees of Creativity workshops.

This space is committed to helping participants sustain an ongoing creative practice with ideas, resources, and a supportive community to keep encouraging our artsy spirit throughout this year.

Whether you are currently engaging in your own daily creative practice through 365 art-making, writing, photography, art journaling, doodling, or have an interest in kick starting or activating more/new art making, this workshop will offer a nurturing creative environment for this kind of inspiration!  Everyday Creativity will offer forum discussions, online community chats, and creative prompts to explore concepts and support one another related to creative practice, time, space, routine, materials, and more.

I look forward to sharing more of my 365 work and experiences in this space, as well as learning and being inspired by other participant ideas, practices, & projects!  :)

Hooray to creative practice!

*****

Related Posts:

The Creative Deed Project

February Warm Up With Winter Fatigue Art

3×5 365 Begins

February Warm Up With Winter Fatigue Art

February 9, 2014

This month continues to be an active winter of lingering subzero coldness and a big dose of snowfall here this past week.

Despite feeling a little (or a lot on some days!) of winter fatigue, making my own art  (and a cup of hot chocolate or two) has been a great way for me to warm up the frozen day to day landscape surrounding me,  as well as inspire wishful thinking about warmer days ahead (40 degrees would be nice!).

February Warm Up With Winter Fatigue Art | creativity in motion

February Winter

So here’s some of my winter weather fatigue art:

I’ve been working on my visual planning for February using pages from this 2014 Planner and some special extras I received this week in the mail from Theresa (thank you)….

February Warm Up With Winter Fatigue Art | creativity in motion

February rpbing

….as well as just finished the first week of February’s 3x5s

3x5 365 | creativity in motion

February Warm Up With Winter Fatigue Art | creativity in motion

February 3×5 Beginnings

I’ve also been material shopping & prepping for the Artist Challenge Coin workshop I’ll be co-facilitating this week at Cuyahoga Community College. It’s been fun to bring together some of my favorite mixed media materials for making these special tokens….

February Warm Up With Winter Fatigue Art | creativity in motion

Artist Challenge Coin Media Prep

I’ve also had Inchie Art on the brain this past week- starting the process to create more 1×1 inch love, as well as finishing the Inchie book that I started last week for an upcoming 6 Degrees of Creativity workshop featuring this teeny tiny creative goodness…

February Warm Up With Winter Fatigue Art | creativity in motion

WIP: Inchie Art

February Warm Up With Winter Fatigue Art | creativity in motion

My lil’ book of Inchie Treasure for 6 Degrees of Creativity

And finally, an inspiring artful happening to this week was art journaling along with Artsyville’s Aimee Myers Dolich‘s during 21 SECRETS LIVE!. We played with watercolors, old ink pads, and collage.  It was so much fun to virtually see Aimee in her creative space LIVE! and hear/see/learn more about the techniques she uses for art journaling, gluebooking, doodling, and more.

February Warm Up With Winter Fatigue Art | creativity in motion

21 SECRETS LIVE! with AImee Myers Dolich

I’m super looking forward to my 21 SECRETS LIVE! experience happening at the end of this month with host Hali Karla and doing some art journaling with everyone. It’s getting close….So exciting!

What art happenings and activity have you been (or will be!) up to this month?

Here’s to warmer days ahead that continue to be art filled and full of creative goodness!

*****

Related Posts:

Creative Goodness Alert: Spotlight on 6 Degrees of Creativity Workshops

2014 Art Journaling Creative Goodness: 21 SECRETS LIVE!

2014 Creative Planning

In the Presence of Now: Creating One 3×5 At a Time

3×5 365: 10+10=20 [ICAD]

January 20, 2014

A little bit of inspiration in words + images from the past week and then some… 10 more days of 3×5 365… 10+10=20:

3x5 365 10=10=20

3×5 365 10=10=20

“I now see how gifts like courage, compassion, and connection only work when they are exercised. Every day.” ― Brene Brown

 

3 x5 365 | creativity in motion
day 11: the joys of meandering

“The artistic image is not intended to represent the thing itself, but, rather, the reality of the force the thing contains.”― James Baldwin

 

day 12

day 12: measuring

“Every day you may make progress. Every step may be fruitful. Yet there will stretch out before you an ever-lengthening, ever-ascending, ever-improving path…” ― Winston Churchill

 

day 13

day 13: my happy place

“Don’t be afraid of your fears. They’re not there to scare you. They’re there to let you know that something is worth it.”― C. JoyBell C.

 

day 16

day 16: love [reclaimed space]

“You must reclaim what you never lost…” -Gnarls Barkley

 

day 19

day 19: responsibility

 [on being] faithful to [external] responsibility + [inner] authenticity

 

3x5 365 on the flipside

3×5 365 on the flipside

“Only in the darkness are able to see the stars.” ~Martin Luther King, Jr.

 

day 20: see the light

day 20: see the light

It is exciting to be approaching the completion of month #1 with this new project! The connection and new flow for this ICAD practice is starting to gradually emerge, which continues to be an interesting process. Stay tuned for more 3×5 365 progress at the end of this month!

If you are looking for a space to exchange inspiration, strengthen, or begin a creative practice, one of my online workshops in this year’s 6 Degrees of Creativity, Everyday Creativity is dedicated to sustaining (or starting) this kind of adventure with ideas, resources, and a supportive space to keep encouraging your artsy spirit throughout this year. Whether it is a 365 project, weekly, or monthly art happening!  I am super looking forward to bringing this kind of creative energy to 6 Degrees of Creativity.

Everyday Creativity

Related Posts:

In the Presence of Now: Creating One 3×5 At a Time

3×5 365 Begins

2014 6 Degrees of Creativity Workshops-On Sale Now!

In the Presence of Now: Creating One 3×5 At a Time

January 11, 2014

[Things end because.... something else is ready to begin.]

The last 10 days of my 3×5 365 project has been an interesting transition from 2013′s 365 project. A mixture of loss (from the familiarity of what was) mixed in with much excitement (about what can be), along with a reminder (to just be present in the here and now).  A helpful, simple tool I’ve started to use for this gentle reminder into the “presence of now” is this handy (and free!) Gratitude and One Minute Meditation app.  For me, this added practice helps re-frame and create a moment of pause before beginning to work on the day’s 3×5.

As I’ve started to embark on this new 365 adventure, these beginning days have been spent getting to know and being present to this project’s new form, being, and structure…a building of rapport and flow connected to this project’s voice.

I’ve already noticed how much I really do enjoy having the 3×5 space to [breathe], create, and play in.

I am eager to see what develops in these sacred spaces over time.. remembering to embrace this process one 3×5 at a time.

[ “Tomorrow will always hold curiosities but it is the enchantment of today's possibilities which has me true to the present.” ] ― Truth Devour, Wantin

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Related Posts:

3×5 365 Begins

Heart Space: 365 Days of revo’lution making

Revo’lution Bits: My 365 Project Begins

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