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My studio used to be a corner consisting of a box of art supplies on the floor and a travel bag of the same on top of it. When I wanted to make art, I would take a masonite drawing board and the bag and go into the living room where there was a bit more space to spread out. Needless to say this was not comfortable or practical, and more to the point, it did not give proper respect to an activity that is important to me and which consumes a lot of my free time.

I am working through the Artist’s Way again, and one of the recent tasks was to set a small goal for yourself and then do it. A big goal of mine is to someday have a separate room serves as a studio; however, where I live now will not accommodate this goal, so I set the small goal to consolidate my art supplies and create a studio that was more than a corner and certainly not on the floor. Therefore, my artist’s date yesterday was to drive down to IKEA and look at small tables. Quite synchronicitously, IKEA had this little table top for less than $20. I got it, assembled it and spent the evening setting up my new space. I can now work on my digital art on the computer and then swing around to work on the non-digital creations. My art and writing books are within arm reach.

I am stoked. 🙂

You can see my “old” studio underneath the table: the box and the bag.


The Sage smiled at me, her face shiny as a full moon.  Her features were smooth and without wrinkles, yet she seemed ancient, as if she had seen everything that had ever happened in the world from the beginning to the end of time.   Her gown was silk in shades of gray with a  shimmering trim of white brocade.  It was simple but elegant, just like herself.

“How are you today?” she asked in a solid low voice.

Whenever she asked me how I was, it was  not in that trite way you hear from friends or co-workers who really don’t care how you are.  She really meant it.  And even though she already knew better than I did myself how I was faring, she asked anyway.

“I’m fine,” I replied.

Her eyes twinkled.

“Really, I’m okay.”

Her gaze did not waver.

“Okay, everything sucks,” I finally admitted.

TWP (c) 2011

Photo:  I took this image through a backyard photograph when I was a kid.

The woman heard a plop.  She opened her eyes a slit and peered at the spring-fed pond at the foot of the temple steps.  A large carp had leaped and snagged a careless mosquito.   Moments later the woman began to doze again,  but before she could fall completely to sleep, a gentle awareness pushed her to consciousness.  She opened her eyes and before her was the loveliest woman she had ever seen:  The Sage.

TWP, (c) 2011

Here’s the next paragraph…. maybe someday I’ll get beyond description to an actual plot!


.………The woman opened her eyes and set them on the edge of the forest that ringed the temple grounds.  

 The trees in the sacred forest were taller than any she had ever seen – cypress, blue oaks, katsura with their short broad leaves, and the magnificent cedars, the lords of the forest.  Their top-most limbs were sweeping wildly in the brisk breeze, creating an undulating canopy.   

In the daylight hours, the woman often went walking short distances just beyond the edge of the temple complex, but only until the canopy pulled over her like a blanket and she felt an uneasiness rise up within her.  Often that uneasiness became a voice on the edge of her hearing that said “Tread with care the pathways here.”

Writer’s note:  I just noticed that I use the word “edge” three times in this short bit…. mmmmm…. I guess I’m a bit “edgy” these days.


Image and text,  Wayward Pelican (c) 2011

korean bell 9 for webA couple of nights ago, I wrote one sentence:  Healing begins like cool, sweet spring water trickling past the temple’s steps.

Because of a big project I am working on at my job, lately I have come home each evening utterly exhausted and too wound up to be able to focus on writing.  I have come to realize that I need to settle my mind first before I can commit to writing anything. 

It has just occurred to me that  cool sweet spring water running past the temple steps is exactly the visualization that I could use to achieve that state of mental calmness and resolve. 

So my next sentence might be something like this: 

The woman leaned back against a painted wooden temple pillar and felt the warm sun shining on her face.  She let the scroll she was reading fall beside her.  The Sage would be coming soon and their daily conversations would begin……

The Wayward Pelican (c) 2011

equinox and full moon 001 smallTonight is the first full moon to fall on an autumn equinox
in the northern hemisphere in 20 years.

I honor of that, I felt compelled to light candles
and burn white sage incense.

equinox and full moon 007 Small

The Wayward Pelican (c) on the Autumn Equinox, 2010