Saturday, May 31, 2008

A Piece of Bound

Oh sleep, sweet nectar of mortality. How I wish I could do without you. As much as I love the magical land you take me to and the comfort you give me, I ask for only a night or two...elve. If I could have this time, the next eight hours, to work away uninterrupted, it would be a dream.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Allow me, Just this Once

You know when you read something and it says exactly what you think, nailing how you feel on a certain topic? I read an interview in Mothering magazine this morning with musician Ani DiFranco. This is so not art related, completely of the topic, and a little lengthy. You may get thrown off, so this is your chance to stop reading and go do something productive instead. Here is what Ani DiFranco says about her childbirth experience:

I decided I wanted a homebirth, but I was shocked at how hard it was to find a homebirth midwife in Buffalo. The whole experience of childbirth and pregnancy was an introduction to feminist thought and study that I'd previously been unaware of, in terms of the way that childbirth was co-opted, and is so controlled by the medical/patriarchal establishment.
It makes me really sad that women have been ejected from the seat of their power in this society in terms of what happpens around childbirth. In other parts of the world, there are places where women can't drive a car, but they're still in charge of childbirth. I look at my society and think, how emancipated are we, really? We can play basketball, but can we benefit from eons of women's wisdom that accords a birthing woman the support and time to give birth healthily? Those elements are absent in our society for so many women.
I've always been very aware of the animal I am. If I walked into a flourescent-lit hospital with people pressuring me to get it done, take drugs, get on my back, and put my legs up in the air, it wouldn't have worked. As Ina May [Gaskin] says, the cervix is a sphincter: It doesn't open if it's not relaxed.
I knew I needed to be at home, comfortable - not feeling any pressure. I agree with that whole school of thought that if I were drugged through that moment of revelation, It would have taken something away from my life journey. I'm really happy in the end that I felt every last bit of the pain, and was as present as I could be. Whenever you go through something terrifying and come out the other side, you grow and have more self-respect in terms of your own strengths. I wanted that more than I wanted whatever sort of numbing that the hospital would have offered. The way I finally got my labor going after two days was to march up and down my stairs. I couldn't have done that in the hospital - they wouldn't have let me climb up and down stairwells for hours, naked and screaming. [laughs] But that was a necessary part of my process.
Birthing naturally, as most women do around the globe, is a superhuman act. You leave behind the comforts of being human and plunge back into being an animal. My firend's partner said, "Birth is like going for a swim in the ocean. Will there be a riptide? A big storm? Or will it just be a beautiful, sunny little dip?" Its indeterminate length the mystery of its process, is so much a part of the nature of birth. The regimentation of a hospital that wants to make it happen and use their gizmos to maximum efect is counter to birth in general.

Amen sister. I would not trade my three births, two at home, for any experience this life has to offer. From these, I grew and have had a peek at my infinite potential and strength as a woman that I pull from every day as a mother. I loved it so much, I think I'll do it again... not yet, but soon.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Desert Flower

We just got back from camping by the beach at Santa Cruz, California. Sigh. I really love the ocean. I have previously thought I was meant to live near water. Thought I needed the humidity, vegetation, and all the smells that go with it. On this trip, I found myself craving the hot, dry air of the desert. Longing to return home where I could bake in the sun and get satisfactorily dried out. This caught me by surprise. Perhaps I was wrong and I was built to bask in the desert sun all along.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


I have so many ideas that my head is about to pop. I can't get them out fast enough because I never get enough painting time. (I am only half complaining, I would much rather have this than too much painting time and not enough ideas - I never get bored). So, a couple weeks ago my friend/dentist/fellow ward member gave me a box with sixty-something 8"x11" masonite panels that were used as clip boards at a youth conference. Just when I thought I had a handle on things and could sit back and actually finish something.

Picture this: You walk into the gallery, you see a few amazing paintings with beautiful colors, captivating figures in aprons and intense ideas on a room divider, obscuring hidden treasures waiting to be explored deeper in the cavern. You look right, a trio of more of such paintings. You look left, strung across the wall, fifteen paintings identical in size and simple frames, spaced an inch or two apart suck you in. As you walk along viewing the small paintings, you feel their tension and tensegrity, each pushing and pulling and weaving into and out of the next. Till you get to the last piece and are released.
That is my vision and I can hardly wait to get to it. So, I got a model over here and got to work. I will play with ideas of duty, sisterhood, toil and a little tenderness. Will I ever finish anything? Will my head explode or stay in tact? Is there anyone who will clean up the mess? Stay tuned.

Sunday, May 18, 2008


I just came across this music video by french singer Emilie Simon (click here to see it). Love love love it. When I saw it, I felt like it came out of my head. I wish it had.

And yay for my new nephew, Anchor, born yesterday!!

Friday, May 16, 2008


Bound by a duty
That feels a little tight
Bound by love
So strong I feel fright
Bound and determined
Not to choke or suffocate
Bound to a promise
I cannot abdicate
Bound for eternity
Wrapped up in an embrace

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


My sister, Cass, and I were featured artists in the spring issue of Segullah, Writings by Latter-Day Saint Women. It is a really neat publication, I have enjoyed reading through this issue. It makes me want to write poetry and essays and stuff. The theme is Roots and Branches. Displaying our art together fit the theme, as we are shoots off the same branch. Our art also lends itself well to the theme because we paint with a lot of introspection and familial themes.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Day

Happy happy birthday Ezra dear
Happy days will come to you all year
If I had a wish that it would be a
Happy happy birthday to you from me

From breakfast-in-bed together to dip-dipping in cheeshe fondu, Ezra Petunia and I had a wonderful 2nd birthday/mother's day. I made her a cute little skirt. And while I was at it, I made her a doll with a matching outfit and a birthday crown with leftover scraps from her skirt. She was stinkin' cute.

Happy Mother's Day to all you wonderful mothers out there. A special, heart-felt Happy Mother's Day to my mom. You are wonderful and I love you. It's a grand realization when you become a mother yourself and stand in awe of all your mom did (and with minimal freaking out) for five kids! Thanks mom, couldn't have asked for better.

Friday, May 9, 2008


I'm taking on a two by three and a half foot painting! I'm pretty excited to start working on it. Will my attention span hold out to cover the entire panel? We'll see. I'll have to get a good book on tape going and ignore the kids while they reek havoc and watch movies. This is a rough drawing of what the piece will look like. It's about sisterhood and all sorts of mushy and gushy stuff. This is huge, I hope it ends up as amazing as it is in my head. Wish me luck.

A little complaint: Remember when those paintings disappeared from my front porch? Never to be seen again. I was just thinking about that as I pack up paintings to ship to Park City. I really look forward to taking the large box into the shipping store with my small children in tow. That should be fun.

A little boast: Southwest Art magazine just accepted me into their artists under 31 deal. Not only will I be in the magazine, but they liked my piece so much they are using it on their post card to advertise the issue. Cool.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Knot (the unfinished painting)

I try to be positive in my art - to uplift, praise, glorify, encourage, define, idealize and unite. I also can't help but be honest and speak from my heart. Sometimes these two concepts will not coexist. This piece is very expressive about how I sometimes feel about my role as mother/homemaker. I have talked a lot about bees and their dichotomy: they make honey and they sting. Motherhood is like that. I hesitate to put my frustrations and inadequacies out there, I don't want to bring anyone down. So, I kind of want cop-out with, "read into this what you will," and leave it at that. I think the image is obvious enough and we all feel it at times - that our apron strings are tied in a knot. Maybe we should talk about it, I don't know.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Sunday Sketch

You know when you get a hair cut, and it's really different, noticeably different. You see your friends and nobody says anything. You're sure they noticed, so there is only one conclusion: it's not so cute. Well, that is how I was feeling after putting my intended title for my next show out there and the zero next to comments glared at me for two and a half days. I quelled the disappointment that the title I was so enthusiastic about sucks because I realize I didn't actually propose it with a question to you. So here it is. What do you think of this title: "She Wore her Heart on her Apron Pocket"? All constructive criticism welcome (I have a pretty tough skin as far as these things go - hair keeps growing and no cut lasts forever). Is it too long? Catchy? Did you get the heart on the sleeve reference? I like the vulnerability that is implied, do you feel it?

Shakespeare helped coin the heart on sleeve phrase. In the opening scene of Othello he wrote, “But I will wear my heart upon my sleeve. For daws to peck at: I am not what I am.” I rewrote these lines to fit my purpose, my translation reads thus:
“But I will wear my heart on my apron pocket. For children to poke at. I am only what I am.”

Friday, May 2, 2008

She Wore her Heart on her Apron Pocket

My heart was tucked away securely in my chest.
Love brought it out and stitched to my sleeve.
As I evolved into my new role, domestic travails
wrapped themselves tightly around my waist.
Again, my heart was transplanted.
It inched its way, so gradually I hardly noticed,
and turned up sewn to the pocket of my apron.

I think I have finally come up with a title for my show.