Nov 27, 2016

All that is expected of her life...

"All that is expected of her life is to be a wife and a mother," he said to me smugly.  I tried to defend her but the battle was already lost. The girl was taken out of school at the tender age of 13 to train to be a wife and mother. Her meager existence was planned. Dreams of being more than her chosen lot in life were floating into the air like a balloon, to never return. Education was the first area of girl's life to be chained and there is no key to unlock it. This is only the beginning. I felt rage like I've never felt before. Injustice. Narrow mindedness. Power. All enforced at her expense...And yet, we sit and watch as this tragedy unfolds.  Where is the hero to save her? The hero is within, but will have to come at a price. 


Nov 19, 2016

Allegiance to the Flag

From Youth's Campaign 1892
Whenever we would say the  pledge allegiance to the flag in elementary school we placed our right hand over our chest. I remember doing this when we lived in the south, but not up north. However, it was not too far in the distant past that the salute was different.  In 1942, the Hitler regime began using the same salute that we did for years prior to WWII.  It is called the Bellamy Salute.

Francis Bellamy, a Baptist minister, wrote the original "Pledge of Allegiance." Until 1892, there never was a Pledge of Allegiance. Daniel Sharp Ford, owner of the magazine "Youth's Companion" was on a mission to have a flag placed in every school in the States.  He asked Bellamy to write the pledge and it was published in the magazine.  It caught on like a wild fire and before you know it the pledge was being recited daily by children across the country. Not only was the Pledge of Allegiance being said at school but in other venues as well such as: public gatherings, campgrounds, and even congress.

So, what does one do with their hands while reciting this allegiance to the flag? You cannot let your hands dangle, they must have a part in this. It was decided that the participants hold up their right arm and it extend it towards the flag.  It looks rather odd to those of us who have never done this. 

By the 1930's when news reels came from Europe and "Heil Hitler" was being said with the same salute the stance fell out of favor with the American public. It was decided then to change the way we saluted our flag and we then began placing our right hand over our heart.  Isn't that where our hand should have been all along?  

Nov 13, 2016

Persistence



Many of life's failures are people who did not realize 
how close they were to success when they gave up. 

                     Thomas Edison

Oct 23, 2016

Create your own luck

Reflection in a puddle
This is Your Life. Claim it. Find your Passion and live it. Corporate life is not an end all to the work experience. Life is more than paycheck to paycheck.  Seek success by your own definition. If you love art, music, or writing, then go for it. Don’t wait until you are near retirement to fulfill your dreams. Explore this planet on which we live.  You will be surprised by the many wonders that are out there. Make a list of what you want to do, see, or feel and plan to accomplish as many as possible before your journey in this life is over.  Love deepCry sometimes. Get up and start again. Stretch your mind beyond the boundaries of culture and religion.  Someone’s opinion of you is just that, don’t let it define or defeat you. Dream big. Create. Everything you do begets something else. Inspire others to do the same. Create your own luck.

Jeannie Smith

10/23/2016

Oct 15, 2016

Look to the Sky


Sometimes we have to look beyond ourselves for answers.  Besides, if we knew everything then why would we search to know the mystery that is called life?

Don't be afraid to live and to do it passionately. Love deep. Cry sometimes. Be thankful. Don't get upset over small things. Sometimes God is in the strangest places.

Oct 2, 2016

Sensitivity: The Untold Story, A review

A few days ago I wrote a post about sensitivity, especially highly sensitive people.  I ordered a movie called:  Sensitive The Untold Story and it arrived on Friday.  I watched the movie that evening and was thankful that someone out there understands people like me. 

Elaine Aron is the author of the book, The Highly Sensitive person, which I have just begun to read. This movie helped me to see that I am not alone. Whether we believe it or not everyone falls into some kind of category regarding their personality. 

Growing up, I remember biting my nails until they bled because life made me a nervous wreck. My upbringing didn't help my nerves at all. Chaos at home would make me scurry to my room for peace and quiet because I felt emotionally drained and needed a recharge in order to face the world again. Then there were times I would explode because my feelings were very intense about a situation I was put in. Watching horror or gory movies was never my thing. Loud noise makes me crazy. Touching coarse fabrics or paper gives me the creeps. After reading this paragraph makes me appear like an odd ball, but this is how my life is. 

I always loved music, art, poetry, and writing my feelings down in a journal.  I, also, notice details in my surroundings that others just don't see. When I love, it is deeply. I feel with the same intensity. 

High school was a place that I could become invisible among the throng and I liked it that way.  Once I got out into the world things were a bit more tough.  I ended up in jobs that made me miserable or had to deal with a brute for a supervisor. For the sensitive person it was hell. I had a hard time fitting in anywhere. 

If you know someone who is sensitive please have them watch this clip from the movie,  Sensitive The Untold Story. The clip is in English, so don't worry about not being able to understand. ( I am not sure what language is written below) Better yet educate yourself about the sensitive person in your life.  They would greatly appreciate it.  



Sep 27, 2016

My take on copying a painting

Have you ever seen a painting that moved you?  I am finishing up a Fine Art class at the local college and it has been challenging to say the least.  One of the assignments is to emulate a painting that you like with a modern twist. Well, I didn't do that. I wanted to see if I could try and make my image look close to the original.  I used the painting by Albert Lynch called Elegante. 


The woman is soft, elegant, with very fine features. I liked how the golden light illuminated her hair from the the side which made her skin look like porcelain. My version is below. 


I think that it turned out well enough for the first try. I would like to try another one and see how it works.   

Sep 25, 2016

Sensitive


Has anyone ever told you that "You worry too much", "You shouldn't feel that way" or "You cannot save the world?" I have struggled with it all of my life. Sensitivity. It is also labelled hyper sensitive or HSP (highly sensitive people).  It is not something that I really thought about until just recently as I was having a conversation with my nephew.  He mentioned that he thinks about things a long after an incident, especially when he feels that he said something that he thinks was wrong. The words roll over and over in his mind wishing that they were never spoken.  I, too, am that way.  It can be torture and you feel trapped by your emotions. If you are not a highly sensitive person you will not understand where I am coming from.

I had a bout with one of my siblings recently and I cried for days afterwards, feeling it intensely. People have told me that I worry too much. I know that I do. But I haven't been able to get a handle on it. Or am I supposed to? Perhaps I am wired to be this way. Being sensitive is not that bad really; When things get to be a bit too much for me, that is when I tend to be emotional.

Here are some indications that you are HSP:

1. When you are expected to do a lot of things in a short amount of time it becomes overwhelming and you shut down. 

2. Crowds or places that have a lot of noise is uncomfortable and you have a hard time thinking. (Try eating in a place with metal walls, oh joy!) 

3.  Alone time is essential for recharging.  

4.  Are you in a bad mood because someone else is?

5. Do you try to avoid upsetting situations at all cost?

6. Constant change makes you rattled. 

7. Do bright lights, strong smells, coarse fabrics or sirens bother you?

8. Does music, poetry, or art move you deeply?

9. Do you notice details that others may miss?

10. Do you notice when someone is uncomfortable and try to make them feel at ease?

The list goes on and on. Did you know that about 15- 20% of the population is HSP?  I didn't know that either.  They are generally introverted, like the quiet, and tend to notice things that others seem to overlook. The really great thing is that a lot of the highly sensitive people are creative.  Van Gough and Michael Jackson, are just a couple of examples of highly sensitive people. Click here to take a test to see if you are highly sensitive. 

Sep 18, 2016

Falling Down: Rural America

It rained the entire 1 & 1/2 hour drive that took me to Weston, Ohio to photograph a little autistic girl in a horse show yesterday.  Instead of being able to photograph outside we were stuck inside under florescent lights, a photographers nightmare.


I was there to photograph the horse show last year at this time and I saw an old house that was vacant and crumbling down. The empty house must have been loved at one point. I was enamored with the fish scale tiles that were painted green but now were faded or nearly bare wood. There was signs of people having lived there in the not so distant past. A BBQ grill was placed by the front door with a mound of other things.  I wanted to take pictures of it then but I couldn't find it. So, this time, I made a mental note of the location so that I could photograph it when I headed back home.  But when I left it was pouring so hard that I couldn't safely leave the car without getting soaked. 


So, I parked the car and aimed the lens at the house as best I could without much rain getting inside. Well, I did get a lot of rain inside but you would never guess that it was raining from looking at the pictures. I tried a process on Photoshop called HDR toning. I moved the levels around until I found the look that I wanted.  I added a memories grunge to it that I found on line et voila this is the result.  I rather like it.  A friend of mine said it looks surreal.  I don't know about that, but I really am drawn to old crumbling down buildings. 

 

Sep 5, 2016

The Ballerina


She wore white, but it wasn't her wedding day.
The shoes were smooth and dainty. 
Around her tiny waist hung a tutu.
Hair was tightly coiled 
upon her head. 
Underneath a neck like that of a swan. 
On pointed toe, with arms spread like 
an eagle, the girl twirled. 


Jeannie Smith