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Monthly archive for September 2012

Listening Inward

I like to know where I stand.

 I like things spelled out in black and white. 

I like things tied up, nice and neat.

But sometimes life gets messy.

And we have to let go of what is safe….

And reach for what is right.

If we are lucky, we will find the path that is made for us.

But how do we know when it is time to leave the proven for the possible?

We listen inward.

What do you hear when you get quiet and go inward?

The Long Way Home

I am a Long-Way-Home kinda gal.  I recognized it eight years ago when I started dating my hubby. (We actually met eight years ago today!)  He lived about 3 hours away and every night for about a year, we talked on the phone.  My evenings in those days usually found me hanging out at my favorite cafe/bookstore which was in the middle of the town I grew up in.

That’s one of my crazy pipe cleaner sculptures on my head. Photo by Earl Parr.

When I got his call, I would hop in the car and head home. I wanted the conversation to last, so instead of heading directly to the house, I meandered. I had grown up on one side of town (literally on the edge of the city limits) and by the time I was in my early 30’s was living on the other side of town. So I would leave the cafe and head to my childhood stomping grounds, then I would ride the coastline home. It is a spectacular drive along the shore. With the water in my eyes and this new guy in my ear, we started out with a better than average chance.

Here we are on the coast of Washington, 2 years ago. We had an awesome time exploring the place where Practical Magic was filmed.

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The weekend we went to Austin for the website launch party at WP Engine, we made our way home nice and slow. We drove down country roads we had rarely ever been down, stopping along the way to explore what others might usually just pass by. I wasn’t sure if he would be up for the detour, but about fifteen minutes off the beaten path he squeezed my hand and told me, “That’s why I love you. You aren’t afraid to take the long way home.”

 Ahhh, he noticed.

We often take the long way home together, even when we are just coming home from running errands or going out for dinner. But we are seldom alone on our journeys. We are usually accompanied by my camera and a curious eye.

I have a collection of photos I want to share with you and have struggled with how to do that. But this evening as we were on our way to our 8 year anniversary celebration at IHOP, we took the long way home as usual. My mind took its own journey as we traveled the shore, and I figured it out.

 Long Way Home….a series

Concrete Cemetery  just outside of La Vernia, Texas, established 1856.

I hope you will enjoy the Long Way Home Series. It is dear to my heart because it is a reflection of my gypsy spirit and my love of life.

Creating Sisterhood

I didn’t grow up with a sister, but I always wanted one.  I remember meeting girls and then women and asking myself what it might be like to have them as a sister.  Over time, some friendships grew strong and felt so vital that I would think, “This is it. This is that sister thing.”

Occasionally, I would find an organized group of women, an organic circle, or a small bunch of friends who might transcend the norm for closeness, support, and encouragement. I revel in those times. There is something about cultivating close relationships with women that sends me flying.

That is what got me so excited about joining ONE K in 1 Day with Startup Training School. I had visited with web designers for about a year, promising my dedicated blog readers a website where we could stretch our legs out a grow a little. First I promised it would come before Christmas, then just after the first of the year, Summer (definitely Summer)….I was exhausted by my own promises.

One of my best friends and I sometimes go months without talking. She called one day and we did a quick catch up that included me talking about the frustration I felt about not having a site up. That’s when she told me about the event. The goal was 1000 women publishing their own websites all on one day. I couldn’t help get excited about it.

You see I have had this stereotype knotted up in my head that the Internet was something that men, especially young men, had more knowledge about than women. It fell in the same group as electronics and science, when in actuality, studies are starting to show that women are leading usage in many tech categories. So having that many women flooding the net at one time felt like a force, like a wave of creativity coming down the pike. So I jumped on.

I loved the energy of creating with all these women. I loved watching them struggle and move through to success. And I loved that feeling of sisterhood that came out of it. This is perhaps the most global feeling of sisterhood I have ever experienced.  I am so truly proud of us.

If you would like more of the story, head over to Startup Training School and let our fearless leader Lea Woodward fill you in on the stats and give you a peek into some of the experiences that the ladies had.

AND……oooo, this one I am excited about…..if you get a chance, hop on over to the Wall of Websites featuring our web-designing sisterhood…..including a fabulous pic of the Creativity Tribe homepage!

Where do you create sisterhood?  What makes a regular friendship different from one that you consider a sister-ship?  Let us know in the comments.

A Puppy Named Clarity

I have been talking a lot about my dreams recently, to friends, in my journal, on the blog.  I am a bit preoccupied with them and for good reason. They are at my doorstep. I feel like the girl who always wanted a puppy and woke up to discover that the one she had in a picture tucked in the pocket over her heart was now in front of her. There are all kinds of things to do with a puppy once you get it!

You can toss it a bone or a ball. Run around the park with it. Let it lick you on the face until you are giggly and gooey. You have to brush it, bathe it, feed it, walk it. Take it to the vet….yah, you get the picture. It is fun but comes with certain responsibilities. That is what my dreams feel like right now.

I am jumping up and down, pinching myself. Is this real? And then I remember…I have a retreat to get ready for and paintings to work on. I have to keep up with the e-course, make sure the forum is working, and decide which of my groovy ideas to share with the world next. Ah, the pressures of life lived in the midst of your-dreams-come-true.

But don’t get me wrong. I absolutely love where my life is at the moment. I am so keen on doing more so I can share more. But that is what having a puppy does to you. It gets you out of bed and playing. Sure you have responsibilities, but think of all the love it gives back in return.

So I am tending to my dreams, paying attention to them in a holistic way.  Asking what they need from me to grow and thrive.  How can I get all my lovely ideas out so I can bless the world with them?

Well, I am turning to my One Little Word for 2012: clarity.  I searched for just the right word to guide me through the year. For the last 9 months, it has shown up in fortune cookies, conversations, dreams, and writings to remind me that this year is the year when I have clarity of vision and can get focused.

With clarity as my guide, I am spending the weekend indulging in self-discovery. I am looking at a collection of awesome business e-books, videos, and guides I collected throughout the year to help inspire me into getting clear about the direction Creativity Tribe is going in the year to come.

I feel  a wave of energy behind me. What will come out on the other side? Your guess is as good as mine. But if the exuberance in my heart speaks anything for what will be birthed, I can tell you it is going to be great!

Faces of Creativity Tribe

 

One element of this new site that I am in love with is the Faces of Creativity Tribe page. In conjuring up what I wanted this space to be like, I kept wishing to find a way to let you be part of it. I have several ideas about how to make that happen on a periodic basis, but wanted to offer something on an ongoing basis.

Faces of Creativity Tribe is a page found under The Tribe tab on the menu bar. There you will find a linky tool that you can use to add you creativity based blog. It is also a great spot to come back to when you are looking for a bit of inspiration. Bookmark it if you would like to keep tabs on the Creatives who make their home here.

You can also show off your pride as a Creative by grabbing the Creativity Tribe badge. I have updated the code, so if you have one that was grabbed from my previous blog, you will want to change the internal address or grab the new code and plug that in.

 

Grab this code for the Creativity Tribe badge.

<a href=”http://www.creativitytribe.com” title=”Creativity Tribe”> <img src=”http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6159/6177827703_e46e568bce_m.jpg” width=”125″ height=”185″ alt=”My Button” style=”border:none;” />

Now head on over and claim your spot!

Creativity Tribe Bare Bones

My mind envisions its big dreams with full curves and in living colors.  But in real life, dreams don’t often happen that way. They take shape one bone at a time with bits and parts being brought together in illogical, chaotic bunches.  Sometimes the content in front of us looks like a mess, but the soulful Creative holds fast to the inner vision and carefully manages its assemblage.

This website has had that kind of blind focus to it. I have sat in front of it for weeks pulling this element up to link with that element, wrestled wryly aspects of my dream into the confines of the web world to see what shape it will take. This morning as I look at what I have before me, what is ready to be shared with the world, I do so with a reminder to my eager dream-mind that this bare boned structure is the foundation of the creatura that Creativity Tribe will evolve into.

The lesson of the bare bones is such a valuable one for me. It is actually one of the first wisdoms I took in as a young Creative. I learned it from Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Este’s book Women Who Run With the Wolves.  She told the story of La Loba, the Wolf Woman, who collected the bones of dead animals, which Clarissa suggested were discarded dreams with the potential to be resurrected. La Loba, the ultimate Wild Woman, stored the bones in a cave and when she was ready, she pulled out the bones of the animal she wanted to work with. She would place one bone next to the another until the entire sculpture was in place. Then, she would sit in front of the shape and dream about the song she wanted to sing.

When she was ready, she would open her mouth and sing out her song. As she sang, the bones would begin to flesh out. Sinew, muscle, skin, fur, tooth, and nail. Cell by cell, the wild animal formed. And when the last strand of hair and the last tooth were in place, La Loba would sing even deeper, from the depths of her soul. As she sang, the creatura would begin to move with an inhalation and exhalation, with life. Still, La Loba would sing deeper. And the animal would spring into action, running right out of the cave, into the darkness. Somehow as she ran, it is said that it might have been the way the moonlight shone on her fur, or the way the starlight sparkled in her eye, something changed her. And the animal transformed into a woman, a woman laughing wildly as she ran towards the dark night.

I am La Loba today. Before me sits the beautiful white sculpture that is the foundation of my dream come true. Each bone is a dream I have tended to in the seclusion of my soul, saving them for just the right moment to share with the world. This moment.  This is my wild animal, my own wildness ready to spring to life. I offer her to you, to witness, to join. As I sit in front of her, I listen for the song I will sing and without a doubt know that my song will be an amalgam of many diverse voices from around the world….perhaps to include yours.

I hope you will be listening for your part of the song, that you will sing deep, from the depths of your soul, so that together we can give our wild, Creative Spirits reason to laugh as they run into the beautiful mystery that is life itself.

Welcome to Creativity Tribe, welcome to a sanctuary for your Creative Spirit, and to an evolving opportunity for creativity, community, and celebration.  I invite you consider this your home, a place where you come to be inspired, where you offer your creativity as inspiration for others, a place for gathering those discarded dreams you wish to claim once more, a place for transformation.

Shareables

Are you looking for inspirational images to share with your friends, to post on your blog or Facebook?

I have a collection of little gems just for you.

 I hope they bring a bit of beauty to your life.

Now, the first of many.

Top 10 Tips for Making My Creative Business Fly

Excitement is filling the air today.  In little spots all over the globe, creative spirits are daring to spread their wings.  Today begins the last time Kelly Rae Roberts will offer her e-course, Flying Lessons: Tips + Tricks for Helping your Creative Biz Soar. I know what it is like to feel the kind of promise that I am sure today’s participants are feeling because last year about this time, I was stretching my own wings in that very same course.

It was a wild ride, one that I hoped might give me the know-how to find a direction for the blog I hoped sometime to shift into a website for helping others live a creative life.  (Hey, check it out, I am doing it!) Before long, I jumped into my business full-time and have been steadily flying higher and straighter.

 

With today being such and great synchronicity, I thought it might be fun to dust off a post from my old blog. I wrote it just under a year ago, and it quickly became the all-time most viewed post I have ever written.  The post somehow got shared with Kelly Rae the day I wrote it (which was for a blog hop I did with my Flying Lessons classmates). Before I knew it, Kelly Rae had shared it with her Facebook and Twitter groups.  Boy did I feel famous for a day!

After a few weeks, I started noticing that it got at least a few hits every day….and still does. I am excited to bring it over to Creativity Tribe because it has such history for me, but more than that, I think it still offers great insight into Kelly Rae’s class while throwing in a bit of inspiration for those who might never take the class.

….Originally posted 11/1/11 on Art of Collecting Yourself….

Welcome to the Spreading Our Wings Blog Hop!

Some of you may have happened upon this blog hop by accident. Happy accident for you! This event includes a gathering of some of the most creative bloggers I have ever had the opportunity to be connected with.  Over the last several months, we have gone from being complete strangers to developing a tight web of support, encouragement, and knowledge for one another.  And at the end of the blog, I tell you how you can become part of this story…and part of a community with these creative spirits.

We met one another during an e-course taught by Kelly Rae Roberts called Flying Lessons.  Since then, we have taken up the symbolism of flight and, well, flown with it.  This blog hop offers a glimpse into that our thriving tribe.  Feel free to visit these phenomenal women.  Enjoy their art and their insight.

For my part of the blog hop, I want to offer a peek at one of the paintings I have been working on and some insight I gleaned from the class.  The painting comes out of a series of drawings I have been doing for several years now.  It is the first I have interpreted with paint, but I am looking forward to many more. I thought it was perfect for the season.

 

copyright Rachél Payne

And now, I would like to share some of my favorite highlights from Kelly Rae’s Flying Lessons.

 Top 10 Take-away Tips for Making My Creative Business Fly

10.  Turn goal setting into time management.  Kelly Rae offered us practical how-to’s for setting goals, then helped us turn those goals into a bite sized to do list that could be integrated into our daily schedules.  What a great way to reach for something and keep yourself on track!  I am learning to make this part of my creative biz and am finding it helps me get lots done.

9. Etsy vs. Other Online Markets vs. Selling off our own Website.  There are lots of options for where to sell artwork on the internet.  Kelly Rae boiled the pro’s and con’s down, including resources and perspectives from various artist.  We then were left to decide which route worked best for our own needs.  I personally decided to go with Etsy. I love the Etsy culture and built-in community.  I opened a shop and will soon have some fun offerings in it.  Check it out: Creativity Tribe Etsy Shop, and feel free to join my circle.

8. Branding.  I was familiar with the idea of branding.  I knew it meant to have a cohesive look to your marketing, so that your logo on your business cards had the same visual feel as the banner on your website and the packaging for products.  What I learned in Flying Lessons was that it can be helpful for our artwork to have a cohesive look to it as well.  This is a challenge for me personally.  I have lots of things I do. But as I am exploring what I want to put out to the world, I am fine-tuning my look so that it has my personal expressive signature.

7. Copyrights.  Copyrights are a two-headed coin for me.  On one side, I am working on honoring the rights of other artists by researching the images I might want to add to my own mixed media works.  This can include stamps, patterned paper, and ephemera.  The other side represents my rights as an artist.  Flying Lessons encouraged me to honor my value as a creator of images and to advocate for myself and others.

6. Build Community not a Customer List.  My blog has always been about relationships, so when Kelly Rae made this a priority in her lessons, I knew she was golden.  She gave us concrete ways to make our on-line life about people rather than products.

5. Face the fear.  This was certainly the first lesson I learned.  For the first week or two, I discovered I carried a lot of fear about facing my biggest dreams.  We were encouraged to recognize the fear.  For me it was huge and almost paralyzing, but each day I worked through the messages that were at its base.  Eventually I practiced being brave and the fear lost most of its sting.

4. Dream Big.  No surprise this came up.  Flying Lessons wasn’t called that for nothing.  Kelly Rae encouraged up to dig deep and own the dreams that we found there.  For me, I kept hitting road blocks with signs that suggested I was only allowed to dream up to this point and nothing beyond.  Or announced that the dream I was cultivating was too big or bright for me.  But Kelly Rae helped me to believe otherwise.  She helped me to understand my dreams are perfect just the way they are and that I am worthy of them.  What a gift!

3. I am not alone.  The most valuable part of Flying Lessons came out of the build-in community Kelly Rae created.  That community is the group that created the blog hop.  Over 400 creative spirits took the class and a significant amount of them stayed around afterwards to offer support, encouragement and wisdom to one another.  When I made my leap from a full-time job to working full-time in my creative arts business, these women were there to champion me on each step of the way.  If you are one of the Fly Girls, thank you.  You have deeply touched my heart.

2. I am my biggest asset.  I can’t tell you how many times Kelly Rae stressed the value of honoring ourselves as an asset for our company.  I have taken that to mean that I must consistently protect and care for this asset by practicing rigorous self-love and self-care.

1. The number one Take-away Tip for making my creative business fly…is to emulate in my business what I valued in the person that Kelly Rae is.  She was so generous, engaging, and authentic, that I know that has to have been a big player in her own success.  Now I want to be clear that I am not saying that I want to try to be the next great Kelly Rae, but I believe the quality of her actions is worth reaching for.  Kelly Rae understands how to imbue business with soul.

(For blog hop links and unedited text, click over to Art of Collecting Yourself.)

 

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Welcome to CT

Welcome to CT

Hi, I am Rachél.... the quirky, big-hearted soul behind Creativity Tribe, a sanctuary for your creative spirit. As a life coach and artist, I know the importance of community, celebration, and transformation. Creativity Tribe is abuzz with connections to other creative bloggers and offers tips and stories to inspire your creative lifestyle!
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There is a beauty that comes out of sharing a journey with another person....a dream for yourself, a direction for a project, a way out of the muck that holds your Creative Spirit back. Let's talk about working together. creativitytribe@gmail.com