Monday, June 24, 2013

Fun Monday Challenge #8

The Fun Monday Challenge, Staying on the Path, is provided by susanna.  Take a look.  Gorgeous!

Feel free to share your work or play on Instagram by adding #14SecretsChallenge to your description, or by adding your photo to our Flickr pool.   

Friday, June 21, 2013

There may be a break in regular programming...

"We are made whole" collage by Lani and textures from FlyPaper
I'm heading off to the AATA annual conference, this year in Seattle, so challenges may be harder to post.  But the conference should be super fun.  Susan Anand and I are collaborating again, on pre-conference course and a presentation, on using fiber arts in culturally sensitive art therapy.  There will also be a panel on a collaborative effort between the American Art Therapy Association and the US military, of which I was a part, so I'll be on that panel as well.  Also there's the Art Market which is always a lot of fun.  Come stop by my table and say hi, if you have a minute.  (There will be a few art journals, sock monkeys, altered dolls, and some jewelry.)

Monday, June 17, 2013

Fun Monday Challenge #7

"Share Hope" collage by Lani and textures from FlyPaper
Create a piece of art today that will totally reflect for you a sense of peace and relaxation.  Think back to a place where you felt copletely relaxed.  It could be anywhere, but for me it would be a beach in Bermuda.  What does this place feel like?  What is the light like?  Sounds, colors, textures?  Incorporate these elements into your piece and when you are done, place it where you most need to see it!

Want special bonus relaxation hints for an extra fun Monday?  Tonight, 2 hours before your normal going-to-bed time, light some candles and turn off the regular lighting.  Make some herbal tea, put on your bathrobe and snuggle into your couch.  Perhaps some Baroque music with the rhythms of mother/fetus heart beats would be a bonus.  This rhythm should put your brain into an alpha state which has a relaxing effect on the amygdala which of course is a very good thing!

Feel free to share your work or play on Instagram by adding #14SecretsChallenge to your description, or by adding your photo to our Flickr pool.   

Monday, June 10, 2013

Fun Monday Challenge #6

Angel Eggs by Lani
This prompt comes from Brenda Swenson and the Artist's Journal Workshop via our own susanna suchak.  Wander around your house, yard, community, or job site and pick up 3 objects.  Put them together and discover what funny, mysterious, or delightful story might unfold.  Brenda Swenson used drawing and painting to tell her story.  I used my iPad and Hipstamatic app.  But really, you could use anything.  Want some psychology behind this process?  The mind likes to mull over issues and worries, endlessly.  One way to put that endless tape on pause is to create questions for yourself.  Dutch philosophical counselor, Harm van der Gaag, says "You just keep going round in circles.  You can break the pattern by asking yourself questions..."  What are these three things doing together, make up a story.  See what happens.  Let your mind release worry and anxiety.  Play.


Angel Eggs #2 by Lani
Feel free to share your work or play on Instagram by adding #14SecretsChallenge to your description, or by adding your photo to our Flickr pool.  

Monday, June 3, 2013

Fun Monday Challenge #5; Finding treasure, creating delight



I adapted this challenge from Christopher Germer,  a clinical psychologist who specializes in mindfulness- and acceptance-based treatment.  Dr. Germer is a clinical instructor in psychology at Harvard Medical School and a founding faculty member of the Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy.  (His website Mindful Self Compassion is mindbogglingly good, by the way.)

Would you like to experience self-compassionate joy for 20 minutes? Take a 15-30 minute pleasure walk outside.  This works best if you can take the walk in nature but any walk will do. The idea behind the walk is to notice as many pleasurable things as possible, slowly, one after another. Use all your senses—sight, smell, sound, touch...maybe even taste.

Collect as many happy, beautiful, or inspiring things as you can, with a camera, cell phone, or with your mind's eye. Do you enjoy the fresh air, the warm sun, a beautiful leaf, the shape of a stone, a smiling face, the song of a bird, the feeling of the earth under your feet?

When you find something delightful or pleasant, really study it.  Enjoy its shape, texture, scent.  Feel a tender leaf or the texture of a stick. Give yourself over to the experience as if it were the only thing in the world. And when you are ready to discover something new, let it go and wait until you discover something else that is pleasurable and delightful to you.

Be like a honeybee going from one flower full of nectar to another. When you are full with one, go to another.  Take you time and enjoy!   Come back to your art space with your treasure and create delight!

For extra delight here's a link Gretchen Miller found: http://thequietplaceproject.com//index.php?page=&lang=

Feel free to share your work or play on Instagram by adding #14SecretsChallenge to your description, or by adding your photo to our Flickr pool.