Archive for the ‘cool stuff’ category

Young-ha Kim: Be an Artist, Right Now!

February 17, 2013

Why do we ever stop playing and creating? With charm and humor, celebrated Korean author Young-ha Kim invokes the world’s greatest artists to urge you to unleash your inner child—the artist who wanted to play forever.

A TED (Technology. Entertainment. Design.) favorite from TEDxSeoul 2010.

TED: Ideas Worth Spreading. An annual celebration of the human imagination that raises the vibration of the planet … check it out here. You can watch this year’s conference, February 25 – March 1, from wherever you are, with a TED Live membership.

The Muse Is IN: An Owner’s Manual For Your Creativity … A High Octane New Book by Jill Badonsky

January 17, 2013

The.Muse.Is.In.coverIf you’ve ever wondered how to get your creativity running like a well-oiled machine, Jill Badonsky’s just-released book is like having an ace mechanic by your side helping you power up your genius and re-engineer common creative malfunctions such as procrastination, perfectionism, self-sabotage, and overwhelmed thinking.

I was lucky enough to run across Jill Badonsky’s solidly lighthearted approach to the creative life a few years ago, and have been on the bandwagon of her powerfully playful philosophies ever since. She’s the reason I became a Kaizen Muse™ Creativity Coach. She’s also the reason I’m having even more fun with all my jazzbo projects, and helping others find more va-va-voom with theirs.

I’m delighted Jill has stopped by here to talk about her fabulous new book—The Muse Is In: An Owner’s Manual For Your Creativity.

Hi Jill … This new Owner’s Manual seems to provide the missing instructions we all needed growing up … is creativity something innate we’re all born with?

Yes, I believe we ALL have the ability to “create” according to the definition with which I operate and encourage others to go by. We create our work, our relationships, our experience of life using the modalities of attitude, perspective, and even grace. Many people associate being creative with being artistically talented. Anyone can forge into the world of writing, art, music, and dance.  
 
From my book:

“Some people think we are either born with creativity or we’re not.

Many people are indeed born with an innate talent.  When they cultivate that talent through many, many hours of practice, amazing works of art, literature, music, what-have-you are brought into existence.  But really, do you need to BE that person in order to discover the bliss, benefits, and rewards of creativity? No.

You can develop skill with practice, but the process is what makes life more wonderful.  Talented people are not necessarily happy;  the ones who are also happy, know how to create joy within themselves. 

Passion,  curiosity, healing, need, problem-solving, angst, joy, amusement, reckless abandon – these are ALSO drives that result in creativity.  Everyone has the ability to be creative in these ways. 

Everyone gets to be creative.”

That’s such a great fine-tuning way of looking at creativity … as something we all get to be in life. What about maintaining our creativity? I read recently that the word “maintenance” is from the French word maintenant, which means now. Can you talk a little about the best practices for maintaining a high creative output without giving sway to burnout or overwhelm?

  • Everyone is different in this regard. Asking yourself, “What works for me” is a good place to start. 
  • But what works for many prolific creative people is: making creative time a habit rather than forcing through resistance every time you want to show up, asking small questions, taking walks, exposure to works that inspire, making sure you take a break to let ideas incubate, fooling around,  meditation and just allowing the process to take you places.

First.Step.MuseIsIn

How did you keep things fun for yourself while doing all the wonderful writing and colorful art for this book?

  • Writing and art just are inherently fun for me. I stay in a mode of childlike curiosity about the flow of surprises that emerge when you make time to just explore ideas.
  • If my writing gets too dry I just remember that one of my favorite voices is the irreverent one and it’s a lot of fun for me to go back and tweak what I’ve written to make it more entertaining. 
  • One of the favorite parts of my thinking is how quirky I am so I’m always surprised with what I come up with. I think everyone can approach their work in this way.

 I love that — remembering to embrace the quirkiness and keep a childlike curiosity about what emerges. It seems to me this book is like the ultimate GPS … mapping out the best routes and scenic stops—and helping you find your way if you get lost.

Yes, as an Owner’s Manual it’s packed with tips, gizmos, conditions for best operation, care and maintenance and troubleshooting. There’s lots of little pieces of added humor in both the illustrations and the writing, making it playfully practical. Start your engines!

Jill, thanks for stopping by the lane-less-harried here at Paula’s Paradise, and for writing such a beautiful and incredibly helpful book that fuels you with creative inspiration on every page.

Jill.Badonsky.Muse

Jill Badonsky, M.Ed., is an illustrator, humorist, nationally-recognized seminar leader, and creativity consultant. As the founder and director of Kaizen-Muse™ Creativity Coaching, she consults with filmmakers, comedians, artists, writers, business leaders, and anyone who is experiencing procrastination and other blocks to positive change. She is the author of The Nine Modern Day Muses (and a Bodyguard), and The Awe-Manac: A Daily Dose of Wonder. She lives in San Diego, CA. Visit her at www.themuseisin.comwww.kaizenmuse.com, or on Facebook and Twitter.

AweManac.9ModernDayMusesWe love comments. Tell us about what keeps your creativity revved. Or stalled. If there’s more than 10 comments here, Jill will do a drawing and giveaway one of her new books to a lucky commenter. We’re all lucky to have Jill’s expertise and entertaining encouragement as we go along life’s highways and byways … thank you, Jill!!

Paula Ticks, Paula Talks: Tick Tock, Time for Politics—Time to VOTE

November 6, 2012

I support President Obama’s re-election because he did all this (and saved America’s iconic auto industry!) while cleaning up the worst financial mess in modern history—all amidst an unprecedented political obstructionism. I admire President Obama’s fortitude, his passion for a fair playing field in America, his dedication to laying the foundation for true stable growth, his cool head and solid strength in a crisis, and the inclusiveness that underpins not only his vision, but the ongoing American dream. 

I wear my political heart on my sleeve. You know who I’m cheering for tonight and why. Vote, America. It’s a right that men and women over countless generations have fought and died for—our democratic process is a beacon of light and liberty the world over.

In 2008, Barack Obama said, “I’m asking you to believe not just in my ability to bring about real change in Washington … I’m asking you to believe in yours.” Let’s finish what we started, America. Let’s stay the course of real progress. It isn’t instant. It’s step-by-step-by-step commitment and dedication. It’s stops and starts. And moves ahead anyway. And celebrates its successes along the way. This is a philosophy that works in any creative process. Including nation building. President Obama has laid a solid foundation in leading us forward. Let’s continue UP. Let’s vote, America.

Blessings on all who are reading this. On everyone who is voting. On every elected official who holds sacred the trust bestowed in representing the citizens. On everyone who volunteers to help the election process at the polls, or fights the good fight as a campaign volunteer. God Bless You, America—Let’s Keep Moving Forward. Together. (And please feel free to insert your own fife and drum music here!)

If you missed President Obama’s stirring campaign event last night in Iowa—which explains so well why I’m still Fired UP, here it is. Your voice matters.

 

What A Marvelous Mantra

October 1, 2012

Time and Tide

April 17, 2012

Walk, saunter, run, swim, wander, feel the sand and warm water between your toes. Or close your eyes and cyber-stroll. Enjoy every tiny treasure of your own personal paradise …

Grand Bahama’s Junior Junkanoo Parade

January 22, 2012

Playing the Cowbells. photo by Paula Boyd Farrington

I love a parade. Especially Junkanoo Parades—those uniquely Bahamian celebrations of sound and bold colors and creativity—pulsed to the steady heartbeat rhythms of goatskin drums, cowbells, whistles, horns, and dancing feet.  The Junior Junkanoo Parade is one of my all time favorites. Students, dedicated teachers, parents, and a host of volunteers from all over the island work countless hours creating meticulously-crafted, handmade costumes, and rehearsing lively music and dance routines to parade through the downtown streets of Grand Bahama. This year’s parade was held Saturday evening, January 14th, 2012, with a big crowd of friends and well wishers lining the streets to cheer the students of all ages on.

Junkanoo is loud. It’s proud. And totally adorable. Here’s a peek at some of the fun … congrats to all who participated and made it possible!

photo by Paula Boyd Farrington

photo by Paula Boyd Farrington

photo by Paula Boyd Farrington

photo by Paula Boyd Farrington

photo by Paula Boyd Farrington
photo by Paula Boyd Farrington

Avast! It’s International Talk Like A Pirate Day

September 19, 2011

September 19th is International Talk Like A Pirate Day. This is the official day to practice saying “arrrggghh, matey”—and other plank-walkin’ talk—an occasion dreamed up by a couple fun guys who were bored one day, but had plenty of Pirattitude. They told funny guy/author, Dave Barry, about it back in 2002, and he put it in his Miami Herald column. The rest is shiver-me-timbers history, and people all over the world now use this date as an excuse to swagger about in their swashbuckling finest and to think about stirring some rum into their coffee. Or maybe that’s just me. Anyway, it’s all about having fun—and got me thinking about Grand Bahama’s own brush with fictional pirate fame.

Filming for some of Disney’s Pirates of The Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest and Pirates of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides took place on Grand Bahama Island, back in 2006/2007. It was a thrill to see The Black Pearl and Davy Jones’ Flying Dutchman cinema-ships up close and to catch random sightings of the cast and crew out and about on the island.

We were all swept up in the movie-making excitement—especially my daughter and her friends, who had a great time devising their own buccaneer ensembles in which to search for treasure and adventure during Ye Olde Playtimes.Halloween at our house that year included a rather commanding and fierce-looking Pirate Princess known as Sparrowla—an imaginary long-lost sister of Captain Jack Sparrow:Here’s to sailing the Seven Seas of Imagination and Laughter for as long as you can! Yo ho, me hearties, yo ho!

 

 

 

Heartsong Haiku

August 20, 2011

simple island joys
dance brightly in lush greenness
nature’s love abloom

From My Grand Bahama Garden: RED Avocados!

January 11, 2011

Now here’s something you don’t see every day. In fact, after living here on Grand Bahama Island for over 20 years, I’d never seen one until a couple days ago. Looks more like an apple or a big plum, doesn’t it?! But look inside at the familiar creamy green …

Yes, it’s an avocado! (And a perfectly ripe and tasty one too.) A quick Google search shows it’s a Florida variety of avocado that turns red when it ripens. These beauties came from a tree in an out of the way area behind the guest cottage garden. This is what they look like growing way up on the tree …

(and yes, I drew the little arrow and circle on the photo so it’s easier to find the avocado, but other than that, all these photos of the avocados are straight out of the iPhone camera, no-retouching at t’all!)

I had no idea avocados could be red. But Miss Lue knew. Miss Lue is an amazing woman who hails from Jamaica originally and is the reason we have clean clothes around here every week. And clean everything, despite my creative clutter. We are truly blessed to have Miss Lue in our lives. In addition to her generous and helpful heart, she also has a green thumb and knows about all sorts of edible island garden treasures. I only knew we were already graced to have two different varieties of green avocados in our garden, but to find a new kind — a RED avocado (I just have to keep saying that because I’m so in awe of it) — feels like winning some sort of tropical arbor triple crown!

I’m so pleased to be at the stage of life where horticultural discoveries in my own back yard are my idea of Headline News. Worthy of a special report. All these amazing trees and plants, and I’m finally getting acquainted with them on a deeper level and asking their names and stories. Pleased to meet you, Red Florida Avocado.

red-when-they're-ripe avocados

so yummy

And thank you again, Miss Lue, for the introduction!

Miss Lue: Household Heroine, Wise Island Gardener & Patient Teacher of Natural Grace

Making Something Bright & New from Your Old Calendar

January 11, 2011

A brand new year means a brand new calendar. But what do you do with your old one? Sometimes I save it as a keepsake of the year’s events, but this year I decided to recycle it into something new and useful thanks to the ARTchix Studio challenge to make something out of your old calendar. My 2010 calendar was full of beautiful and whimsical illustrations and heart-brightening quotes from a company called Brush Dance. The name Brush Dance got me thinking about giving my paint brushes a fun new container to shimmy in and out of in 2011. Next thing you know, an old holiday cookie tin was being repurposed and jazzed up with a collage of inspiring images from the old calendar, mixed together with some retro-cool ARTchix graphics. Here’s the 360 degree view, together with wishes for a New Year painted with love, a playful heart, and plenty of reasons to smile.


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