Friday, February 20, 2009

wishing you a weekend with joys to outweigh the sadness

Creative collage with crowabout has been a place I've not visited for ages. I DID have a special interest in the week 19 images. Finally I finished, I think ;), this art journal page - "art reminds us to live life". I used mainly images from the group but the middle picture on the top was a contact paper transfer from a magazine. I thought it added some colour and flair to the page. The nest is another of my own images.

I am thinking it was the images of the eggs which especially attracted me. I love most birds. They remind of, and bring to me, angels. I was fortunate to capture a few pictures of these lovely grouse on the weekend when we were visiting at our farm.

My brother informed they have been enjoying that particular tree over the past few days. While we knew grouse are in the area, over the past many years, we have never before seen them in the tree so close to the house. The evening before there were ten birds in the tree at one time. BEAUTIFUL!

I captured the more common bohemian waxwings a few days later after a morning walk - returned with the camera. I love the sound these birds make as they make themselves "drunk" on the red berries of the mountain ash trees. They come in huge quantities, gorge themselves till all the trees in the area are bare. Then they move to some other remembered location to once again gorge.

These photos are not very clear. The birds seem to elude me when I come with camera in hand. Perhaps some day I will have patience and a better zoom on my camera that I may have better luck with the birds.

This next photograph just shows some really neat pictures I found in a vintage bird book I acquired last summer. I think they are so cool.

Finally a note to check my etsy shop where I have done some relisting and am starting to put more listings. I hope to have some totally new pieces soon.

And don't forget my little autumn richness book on sale at Blurb. You can find it in the right side-bar here also. Just click and it will take you directly there. Friends which have viewed the book locally are astonished with the pictures. If you love autumn, I know you will love this little book.

wishing you a weekend with joys to outweigh the sadness
angels to be with you

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day

I want to wish each and every one of you a very Happy Valentines Day. I have for you some roses:

and a collage piece I made a few years ago about friends:


Here are some valentines and their tin I purchased a few days ago in Saskatoon at Art Placement:

Happy Valentine's Day dear friends.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Friday the 13th AND love

This picture was taken about 13 months ago on the 25th anniversary celebration of me and my husband.


On another Friday the 13th my dear husband, Greg, and I went on our first date. We went cross country skiing and out for supper afterward. We had first really noticed each other at the previous years Christmas party at his work place. I wrote this piece about five years ago as I remembered.

You were “in pursuit”.
You were being teased, pushed.
You didn’t care.

I - well, I was quite naïve (I think).
I was in this little black number.
It had a lace back.
But I was basking in the attention.
Enjoying your being “pushed”.

Who was naïve?

Another Christmas party, another time with my friend.
Only thing - I was hardly with my friend. You
seemed “dark”, somewhat threatening, though dirty blond
and blue eyed. I had been overprotected, mostly unaware
of the world about me. Perhaps this was the time
for some excitement, a bit of “life on the edge”. Pursuit,
magnetism – it happened that night. I was thrilled.

©Wendy Burton

And I wrote this poem just a few months after the above. It was written for Greg's birthday.

A Beautiful Arrangement
I made an arrangement today,
An arrangement of flowers.
First I tried to tell myself it was for you,
For your birthday.
Then I reminded myself it was for me.
I love the doing, the end, but mostly the doing.
Then it came to me -
It was for us.
It represented us, so clearly in my mind.

I put in tall beautiful spires of delphinium.
These are the courage, the hope.
They reach up high.
Sometimes the wind plays havoc.
But still they stretch up toward the sky.
Still they flower, those complex blue flowers.

There are hollyhock stems, not yet flowering, but with buds.
The stems are strong and straight.
Their leaves are large, equally strong.
Yes, there is much strength.

Asparagus ferns are for fluff, and more fragility.
But they also have reached high.
They too can be strong.

There are peonies - beautiful, fragrant, and colourful.
They are large and intricate.

A couple of daisies add some whimsy.
Sometimes I wish there were more.

I added clematis vines.
I see them as love.
Though I put in only two, I envision them
And growing
And growing,
Winding their way throughout.
They allow all the others to be their most beautiful.

As I put the arrangement together, I needed to take care.
It was raining.
The water dripped off the roof.
The hose lay in my path.
How much more symbolic could this have been
Of our life,
Our path,
As we create this most beautiful arrangement of love?

© Wendy Burton
(a gift for my husband Greg for his birthday a few years ago)

A collage piece from a few years ago:

True love

Thursday, February 12, 2009

drumroll for OWOH

Today is a very special day in the world of artful bloggers. It is the day when over 900 participants in the "one world one heart" giveaways choose the winners. And so I have chosen winners also.


I do sincerely hope that if you are not the lucky winner of my little autumn book from my OWOH giveaway, you will consider purchasing the book from blurb. I know that autumn is a favourite season of many. I believe the photos I have chosen represent the richness of the season very well. There are a couple of my poems within the book as well.

By Wendy B. Burton

Now for a bit of a drumroll:

And the winners of my one world one heart draw are:
The whimsical goblin wins the book. Please take a moment to visit this blog if you've not already done so. It is very intriguing. The profile is written in such an interesting fashion also.

Contessa Kris wins the bag. This is another interesting blog to visit. I can certainly tell that Contessa is an extremely busy, creative person, just as most of us artisans.

And so life continues. We have all acquired many new friends. I know that I will be hoping to visit many of you again over the next months.
angels be with you

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Sunday sunlight

Sunday sunlight

I love how the sunlight beams down in our kitchen. The large south facing window allows that to happen. The blue bottles sit atop the microwave just in front of the window and there are some stained glass pieces and crystals hanging from the window frame. When the sun is shining and things are just right, well, I can feel "just right" too.

When The Sun Shines
When the sun shines
The snow
Has such a magical sparkle
You can imagine you are a fairy princess
Flitting carelessly over the snow.

When the sun shines
The crystals and stained glass
Hanging in the window
Put magical spots of color
On the pale yellow walls.

The small birdhouse
Of tiny mirrored tiles
Sets coins of light
On yet another pale wall.

Each spot of color
And coin of light
“I am here with you -
No need to be frightened.”

When the sun shines
The colors are so intense
They nearly take your breath away.

The hoar frost is like something
You thought you could only imagine.

The intense red
Against the brilliant blue sky
And part of the earthy, rough tree branches
Must be something more
Than food for waxwings.

Something more
Than the fruits of a tree.

When the sun shines
And we see “God’s promise”
In the rainbow,
For that instant in time
We know that all is well.

© Wendy Burton
written in 2004

HOPE Abounding

Life can be filled with so much colour, so much brightness, so much joy. We need only to look within our hearts, look all around us, look in the eyes of our friends. At first we may see pain and sadness, in ourselves AND in others, but that means we must only dig more deeply. I am sharing some simple journal pages I did on the weekend. The first is called savour.


The next pages are infinite possibilities and lack of enthusiasm.

infinite possibilities/ lack of enthusiasm

The last is called life.

life ~

I could not find my regular journal book the day I wanted to do these so I just grabbed one of the old books which I had begun to prepare for altering. Now it will be another art journal book.

I'll be drawing for the OWOH later today and announcing the winners tomorrow.
angels be with you

Monday, February 2, 2009

my "one world one heart" giveaway


This give away is now closed.
I had a very tiring day yesterday so the closing was extended until today :D I will announce the winners in a new post a bit later today. Thank you so much for your participation. I look forward to ongoing friendships. Angels be with you.

I have decided once again to jump on the "gypsy caravan" of the One World One Heart giveaway. I totally missed the fun last year but was a happy participant the previous year, being a giver and a recipient. This caravan has become a very popular event. The last time I looked there were over 800 participants for this year. By the time entries close later tomorrow, well - who knows how many participants.

My offerings this year are a signed copy of my little book called "Autumn Richness" of which you can see the cover. You can get more details about the book and see a preview by visiting this link.

By Wendy B. Burton

Another prize is this little denim bag measuring approximately 10 inches by 10 inches on which I have appliqued and embellished a copy of one of my creations.
I am planning to add a few beads yet but this gives you a basic idea.

Please leave a comment here if you would like to enter my give away. I do accept anonymous comments but also have comment moderation. Sometimes I do not get to moderating the comments immediately. Give me some time to publish. I will need a way of getting back to you if you are picked to be the winner. So let me know of a facebook name, flickr site, or regularly used blog where I might reach you if you are chosen as the winner. The draw will be closing on February 11, 2009 at midnight central time. The winner will be announced on February 12, 2009.
Also please enter the draw of the OWOH originator as well as the numerous other participants.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

"I made a mistake" and SAD (seasonal affective disorder)

So sad was I as I realized yesterday that I had accidentally removed my writing blog from this planet forever. I thought at the time I was deleting the blog on which I had only a few of my pictures in larger format. When I went to find a story for a friend yesterday the understanding came to be. Now in a better place in my mind, I knew I had to let it go. I thought of this journal page I had made a little over a year ago. That mistake had more life altering effects. This mistake is minimal.
And so I will look for remnants of that blog in my computer. Today I will share the story that I was going to show to my friend. The story is called "Caves" and was actually three pieces which I put together. I wrote it about four or five years ago. The reason I wrote "Caves" initially had much to do with my Seasonal Affective Disorder. It is also about loneliness. If you or someone you know suffers from SAD you may find the story interesting. If you are not certain whether you have SAD you could probably read it. I know the story has helped a number of people already. Maybe it is meant to help you also.

"When the sun shines
The snow
Has such an enchanting sparkle
You can imagine you are a fairy princess
Flitting carelessly over the snow.

When the sun shines
The crystals and stained glass
Hanging in the window
Put magical spots of color
On the pale yellow walls.

The small birdhouse
Of tiny mirrored tiles
Sets coins of light
On yet another pale wall.

Each spot of color
And coin of light
“I am with you -
No need to be frightened.”

When the sun shines
The colors are so intense
They nearly take your breath away.

The hoar frost
Is like something
You thought you could only imagine.

When the sun shines
We see “God’s promise”
In the rainbow.
For that instant in time
We know, all is well.

They said my writing is mystical. They said, “You need to give more details”. They said, “You must explain more.” Yes, but this writing is difficult. This explaining is painful. If I write creatively, if I write mysteriously, they will not get the full picture. I suppose that is what I want. I suppose it may hurt too much to write it more clearly. I suppose I am scared to have the writing understood more fully. The reader might find me strange, more strange than I already see myself.
I have been a victim of seasonal affective disorder. Though I have been using the lights for a number of years, I still feel the effects of this requirement for extra sunlight through some of the more bitter winter months, and through times when the goddess of light can not be seen clearly through periods of grey regardless of the time of year.
The loneliness is so big. Sometimes it feels the loneliness is consuming me. Perhaps it is a tiny microorganism gnawing away at my shell. Sometimes it feels more like a monster, trying to devour me in one huge gulp. Often I am unable to dredge up the energy required for fighting this beast. As my shell is consumed in greater and greater and yet greater quantities, the energy drains out of me more and more rapidly. I need to quash the animal. Somehow I need to bandage the spot. I need to keep the first tiny flickering of doubt from even entering. I must encase myself in a stronger shell so the loneliness cannot be all consuming. Yet, importantly, I must let the shell be porous. My sensitivity is paramount to my being. Somehow I must hold out the pain. The fine attunement to feeling must remain. As I search for the balance, I seek the caves.
In some months, I am not even able to remember the caves. The weight of the darkness is too heavy. Instead, I might see birds, like in January. This particular January, my eyes wanted to give me problems, not just literally, but figuratively as well. I opened the door to let January in. She was not totally unexpected. Calmly, she proceeded into my sanctuary. December had flown through on beautiful, graceful wings of a dove. At times she was bold – an eagle. At times she was wise - a snowy owl. Raucous behaviour with wisdom, noticed later, was displayed as a crow. Yes, December had gone flying through.
Now January wanted to stay. It felt she wanted to stay forever. She was not flying through. I tried often to find the indigo birds. Indigo birds were spots of light I could often see when I was relaxed and had my eyes closed. I imagined them being a message from God, telling me “all is well.” In January these birds were hiding. Instead it felt like some huge creature, maybe a vulture, was under my eyelid, stuck inside. It kept flapping its’ wings, trying to escape. Finally it would be free, only to return a day later with even greater struggles. I tried to relax. I tried to set it free, but the trying, was difficult.
At times, when the sun shone and the air was calm, the dove of December seemed to still fly through gracefully. But then panic soldiers were banging at the doors again, demanding to come inside. They would come storming in, marching, stomping, shouting. Maybe they were telling the vultures to leave, or maybe calling in more.
Then only sixty some days later I would question - why must March, why must Spring, feel so much like walking in the deep, dark forest? Why does it feel like I will never find my way through the forest with all its’ darkness? Why does the ringing phone frighten me like the howling of a wolf? Why do the grey skies hang overhead like the darkness of death? Why do the clouds feel like clouds of dust, making breathing ever more difficult, ever more complex? Why must every step bring the fear of falling into the deep dark water? And this water holds no beautiful coral. There are no beautifully coloured fish. Because of the dense forest above, the water is murky. The water holds - maybe sharks, maybe creatures with eight arms, maybe more, waiting to grab any unsuspecting life that lets itself fall through the surface. Why must March feel like a great, humungous, rough, black blanket being tossed over me, stifling me? Why am I being pushed to the ground, into the water, yet further into the deep, deep darkness?
Oh why must March leave me feeling so weak, that the devil is holding my hand? He is holding my hand and pulling me. Pulling me where? Pushing me, with whatever strength may be required to get me even deeper into the darkness.

The caves, they bring me some comfort, if only I remember to enter. I go in search of stalactites and stalagmites. Some of the formations I have found in the past. Of these, very few seem within reach any more. They seem to desire, often, to be out of my line of vision. Or maybe they have somehow diminished in their size. How could that be of a stalactite or stalagmite?
Sometimes I wander aimlessly in search. Other times my footsteps follow a known path. Occasionally the known path still leaves me searching. They are not where I thought. Or perhaps I can see them, many of the stalactites and stalagmites, but they are too far in the distance. I keep traveling, apparently round in circles, and still cannot reach them.
Then I might look back. I walked right past and missed them. I turn. Now they are gone again. I wonder if I could be at peace if I would leave the caves. No, I entered while looking for peace.

The season of snow and ice passes. The caves do not beckon so much. There are other adventures. Now the seashore beckons. Bare toes can dig in the sand. Waves can be counted. A gentle breeze can be felt in the leaves. The coming storm may rage. Sparks will fly.
About me, there is a contentment. I sense harmony. I enjoy the green life floating in the air, flowing in my veins.

Again the flow seems to chill. The green turns to gold, and then brown. I glance at the caves, knowing soon the time will come.
The entrance to the cave appears to broaden. As I approach, I notice immediately some small arrangements. They are familiar and lovely. I nod and move on. There are more, many more. I look about. Though most seem familiar, I see new figures. I stop for a time to take in their beauty. Then I continue. I had caught a glimpse in the past of something rare, but achievable. I have many steps to make. The path seems long.
And then, I nearly have to close my eyes. The sun is shining through. I do not care from where it originates. The crystal structures are of such beauty. I feel so rich. There is one, more, yet another. I seem to be able, miraculously, to hold a piece. They had become part of me. I see one, maybe two, or three more. I take in their beauty. I feel their strength. They seem to gather strength from me. Then it is time to leave. Empowered, I am able to depart from the cave. Now that I know where the crystallizations are, I will be able to return. Sometimes the road will still be long. But I know the path. And I will again feel the contentment of the caves."
Wendy's bookshelf: read

Exhibition 36: A Gallery Of Mixed-Media InspirationOne Week In DecemberWhat Matters MostCloud NineSafe HarbourFollow the Stars Home

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