Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Brave, Bold

I met someone today who I could only assume was having a pretty tough day. Regardless, she looked stunning, and I complemented her on her look. Superficial as it was to do, you could tell it brightened her day.

My compliment was not an empty one. She sported handmade necklaces and an elaborate headband that gave her the adventurous look of a travelling gypsy. Not surprisingly, she was also a musician with an eclectic array of influences that formed one unique voice.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Coming Back to the Art of Everyday Life

I credit Leslie Plank for being my muse and lighting the creative fire for me to pick this up again. She is the author of http://thiscraftygal.blogspot.com/ and was on the television show EightWest this morning showing off her flower creations. Awesome.

I can be forgiven for not having followed up my initial musings, since after the first blog entry two years ago, I was surprised to find I was pregnant with my son. A separate blog was created to celebrate and share the ups and downs of that adventure, one aptly named Adventures: http://notabene.typepad.com/adventures/

Yeah, we didn't keep that one going after Will became more active, and thankfully, healthier. But I have been busy!

The original thought behind my blog two years ago was to revisit those cassettes that have become obsolete as technology replaces one format after another. Think of all those folks who miss the crackle and pop of vinyl. I'm of the generation that had cassette tapes stuck in every available storage compartment of my car. I was going to listen to a cassette every week and given an album review based on rock-ability, sustainability, and durability.

Alas, the passage of time has seen me bid adieu to the very vehicle that still had a cassette player. We still have the Cabrio, but in a game of musical cars, that vehicle is now the temporary transportation for our ballplayer and I'm a gal about town in a mom-mobile, a new-to-me Ford Escape. Change to a larger vehicle was necessary, I was clocking the baby in the head with the roll bar every time I shoehorned him into the car seat.

I like the idea of revisiting old cassettes as I relinquish them to the trash, freecycle, etc. but I have a new inspiration: the art of everyday life.

For today, I was driving through downtown on my way to work. Day: crappy. Traffic: lousy. As I drove up the Wealthy street bridge to get on the highway, I enjoyed a brief respite from my crabbiness as I watched an African-American man with an easel creating a painting while standing on the sidewalk overlooking the 131 S-curve. It was so completely out of the ordinary, this bright splash of a man creating in the middle of industrial drudgery as the masses went about their to and fro. As I waited to turn left, I was able to view his work and see the highway from his point of view. Instead of gray, dirty, noisy and mechanical, his point of view was sleek, dynamic, and sexy, a bold rush of primary colors set off by a silver guard rail, bent as if viewed from a fish eye lens.

He was oblivious to my admiration and the curious stares of my fellow commuters. If anyone shouted profanities or gave him a thumbs-up, he didn't care as he was completely into his creation.

He made me smile in appreciation for his dedication to creation and the boldness of his actions. The creative process can be challenging if people are looking over your shoulder, inevitably offering their opinions, their criticisms, their mockery of your attempts at making something unique. By creating in public, he was more than a painter, he was a performance artist, taking you along for the ride.

So to Leslie and the Wealthy street painter-guy, thanks. You've inspired me to blog about the beauty I find every day.