Posts Tagged ‘Photography’


October 12, 2014

Visit From My Angel (East Beach) 080 (1024x991) (2)

Since losing my little dog, Star,

my attempts to depict

her dear and funny figure on a pot

have been futile.

Finally facing a particularly challenging bowl

in a particularly challenging time,

she came to help.

She came as she had always done,

as comforter

and gentle prodder when her human needed prodding.

Visit From An Angel Bowl 047 (1024x656) (2)Visit From My Angel bowl (detail) 037 (1024x683) (2)As in the days of her bright living,

her sweet presence came.

I only needed

to wake up and live…

to let the spirit move

on earth as it does in heaven.

Visit From My Angel 090 East Beach (1024x694) (2)I carried on with faith that carrying on

would get me somewhere.

Whatever gift or capability I had

would see me through the task

however arduous it proved to be.

My little angel’s plumey tail wagged happily

when I thought “beach” and drew a spiraling sun.

Pelicans and drifting clouds were fine.

Small waves and several “stars” were also good.

Star’s sensitive nose tipped upward in approval

at salt-scented air.

Visit From My Angel Bowl with Pearl 041 (1024x683) (2)

Pearl thought she smelled a dog

when I brought the finished pot home

and placed it on the floor for her approval.

My own approval…

or acceptance…

was slow to come:

The glazes were not bright enough, etcetera.

But apparently, my little dog angel

was still whispering possibilities,

and what I heard

as clear as clear can be

was “BEACH”.

Take Music to the beach…

and take that blessed bowl.

Take that infernal camera, too.

Have “FUN”!


We did have fun,

Music doing doggy things,

and me with my little camera

playing with my beach bowl on the beach.

My mind grew quiet.

My heart was softened by salt-scented air.

And back at home,

I brushed the sand off of the beautiful pot…

and placed her in the showroom….

Visit From My Angel (exterior) 078 (1024x644) (2)

…where on that very morning

a woman recently bereft of her dog

purchased “Visit From My Angel” as a memorial

to take back home to Michigan.





October 1, 2014

Lantana Dreaming of Music 012 (1024x683) (2)

As I was pondering another blog post with yet another decorated pot (Two just emerged from the kiln), I was browsing pictures that I had liked enough to process and save. I stopped on this one and felt myself drifting into it…recalling that day, that moment that captured more than my eye. I came across others as I browsed, moments that never made it to the blog or any other mode of sharing, and decided to honor a few of those. I will also include a shot of each of the pots that I like as photographs…as moments worth recalling.

Butterfly pot on Bricks 095 (1024x706) (2)

Weary of trying for decent images of art as art,

I allowed my butterfly pot to alight upon old Chicago bricks.

Wisteria Vine - A Dance 006 (1024x799) (3)

Long after the Spring’s abundant blooming,

a single Wisteria vine dances en l’air.

Musical Moment 079 (1024x683) (2)

My old dog, Music, continues to teach me

to smell, taste, and listen as I step into the muck.

Pearl Napping in The Light 063 (1024x614) (2)

My cat, Pearl, eats, drinks, and is merry…

bef0re stretching out to absorb the light.

East Beach Phenomena 067 (1024x749) (2)

The light broke through like magic

as the water rushed the shore.

Lizard Pot on Stump 113 (1024x670) (2)

I place my lizard pot on a stump to photograph,

but my camera prefers the stump to the pot.

Cicada on Silk Milk Container 098 (684x1024) (2)

After breaking free from her old outgrown skin,

the cicada dries her wings before flight.


September 7, 2014

Great Blue Heron (Inner Harbor) 002 (2)

Great Blue Herons

are a very familiar shore bird

where I live.

They perch on fishing piers

and fish in the marshes.

They wade along shorelines

and nest in tall pine trees.

They fly overhead

with a startling, raucous cry.

They are as beautiful and strange

as they are familiar.

Great Blue 030 (1024x680) (3)

In recent weeks

I have found myself beguiled

by a particularly dashing bird.

Coy and seductive,

ready to pose for as long as I aim my camera…

Of course I am entranced.

In the morning –

turning just so in the bright-lit water –

he casts a shadow

on his handsome feathered back.

In the evening

he leads me among the pier posts,

shows me his mirrored image.

He fills my mind

and causes my heart to linger

in heron-land.

No wonder I danced with him

on the surface of my most recent pot.


No wonder I shamelessly lounged

in the marshes he frequents…

Heron Pot on Art Table 057 (1024x683) (2)

kicking my legs in the air

and  basking in his presence.

Heron Pot on Art Table 055 (1024x683) (2)

No wonder I celebrate my love

for the constant bird


by bringing my heart to my art.


August 3, 2014

LIFEDANCE Pot 022 (1024x750) (2)

LIFEDANCE: I borrow the name

from my autobiography,

written some years ago as a necessity

when I was stalled in life…in dance.

I needed to tell my story to myself.

Apparently I still do need to tell my story;

my most recent means is by decorating pots.

I have found that telling one’s story is an attempt

to integrate the various parts of self.

For me the various gestures of life

can become fragmented.

One part rejected as less acceptable…

can be split off,

and so the struggle to re-unite ensues.

The first two figures I drew upon this pot

were harmonious, balanced…and acceptable.

The third appeared: proportion all wrong,

her gesture heavy and reluctant,

unacceptable until…

LIFEDANCE Pot and me 066 (617x1024) (2)

I smiled at her awkward sweetness…

her trust in my eventual surrender.

I recognized the conflict…

and my own inevitable struggle before the flow resumes.

I know my dance reflects my life,

and life is happening.

And life unfolds…

LIFEDANCE Pot 096 (1024x683) (2)

I begin to see once more the various parts

that work together for the good.

The life, the dance, the story will be told.

Each gesture will invariably contain the whole.

LIFEDANCE Pot 020 (802x1024) (2)


July 6, 2014

Lotus Woman 4 (683x1024) (2)

She sat on my shelf but briefly…

before moving on,

gladly sharing space with creations out of my past.

She graciously gazed into my camera lens…

as I recorded my brief moments

as her student.

When I had floundered

at the beginning of creation,

she calmed my fingers and my mind.

She drew attention

to the curving lines of vase…

of woman sitting.

Beyond surrender I flowed easily…

into the center of what came to me:

Woman meditating on the lotus of her life.

Lotus Woman 5 (683x1024) (2)


June 30, 2014

Familial Dance 9 176 (683x1024) (2)

Emotions were intense –

and asking for expression –

in the week I began this pot.

As I picked up my pencil,

sorrow still swirled

in the place between my breasts.

No wonder at all

that I fell back on dance…

appealed to the passion of my youthful years

to counteract the heavy ache

of body and mind.

My soul complied…

Familial Dance 5 166 (739x1024) (2)Familial Dance 138 (792x1024) (3)

The child leapt

from the passionate and driven man

that was her father…

leapt into practical, dependable connection

with her mother.

The mother’s love was based on faith.

Her spiritual guidance would be lasting.

Her dancer daughter –

born of opposites –

would not forget the familial dance.

Familial Dance 6 167 (781x1024) (2)Familial Dance 143 (2)The circular and grounding source

must be repeatedly returned to:

for nourishment…

for rest…

for stabilizing.

And equally,

repulsion and rebounding.

I know this now as I renew the bond

with the women of our family…

renewing also the creative drive.

Familial Dance 10 090 (1024x668) (2)

Even as the body ages and subsides,

the spiritual fire lives on.

So does the dance…


May 4, 2014

New Growth on Bent Hickory 141 (1024x681) (3)

On a recent walk…

I found myself struck still and charmed

by the “blooming” of a Hickory.

Bent low, struck low

some years ago

by a storm’s relentless blast,

she is still growing…

living past the blows dealt.

Now she blooms.

New Growth on Hickory 121 (1024x683) (2)

I find myself in love

with this brave evidence of persistent life.

I walk past daily

and as the tree revives,

 I find myself revived

by spring’s hard rains…

by sun’s intense caresses.

Perhaps we are much tougher than we thought.


March 8, 2014

Sandhill Crane Refuge - Lingering and Left Behind (Intimacy) 188 (777x1024) (2)

On my cousin’s birthday –

walking the trail of a refuge for Sandhill Cranes  –

I found myself entranced by curly grasses.

My sister called them Toothache Grass.

Yet how could anything so fey and free –

so grace-filled and precocious –

be named Toothache Grass?

I fell behind the jovial women I had come with,

surrendering to the dependable intimacy

of taking photographs.

Sandhill Crane Refuge - Curly Grasses and Palmettos 190 (1024x768) (3)

These curly grasses drew me in

to catch the light…

to sense the wind…

to dance against Palmetto and Pine.

Sandhill Crane Refuge - Dance of The Curly Grasses etc 185 (1024x758) (2)

Having found my peers,

how could I leave?


January 27, 2014

Sculpted by The Dying Light...Tree Flight 006 (1024x743) (2)

I had turned away

from the sun-kissed water

of late afternoon

to follow familiar walkways

back to my car.

I had no expectation

of sculpted light…

of tree in flight…

of tree-bird-light-flight.

I had forgotten

the power of the dying light.

As I near the end of the day that is my life on this earth, it is tempting to forget that this is the time when the light intensifies…offering magical moments to those who will see and believe. When I am open, I know that the things I see and record by drawing, sculpting, painting, or taking photographs are showing me who I am. The simple occupations of life are also capable of this. Since a few days after my surgery I’ve been going to rehab three afternoons a week. When it began I felt much diminished by my helpless right arm. Except for excruciating pain, it seemed to have died on me. It took surrendering to a sensitive and talented therapist to open my mind to the potentiality of healing. David has coached me through three months of hard work and tears, small victories and triumphant smiles. He has been patient, demanding, and encouraging. On Wednesday, he was back after an absence of two weeks, and I rejoiced to show him my progress…lifting both arms above my head like a proud child…taking in his unreserved pleasure and accepting his challenge of new exercises and heavier weights.

I think now of how different these exercises are from the nature-influenced exercises I practiced and taught for so many years.  Airth worked with gravity, yielding heavily that I might rise in an effortless way. Everything flowed. Yet, at rehab, I stand straight as a soldier, gather strength and push my way upward through the resistance in my shoulder and bicep. It is hard work and it hurts. These sessions remind me more of my early years in Ballet: The straight body with its unnatural turn out of the hip from which the leg must lift high and be held aloft.  That, too, was grueling hard work and pain was an essential part of each day. Then, too, the moments of brief triumph brought forth a child-proud smile in response to my teacher’s affirmation. I felt the years collapse as I left my session/class and began the drive home. I was still the young dancer smiling at small victories.

So what does this have to do with the magical hour before the end of day? Well, perhaps the whole day is contained and released in the hour before night falls; the whole life is contained and released in the latter years of our lives. If we will, we have access to every experience, idea  and emotion we have ever known.

Heron Haven 008 (721x1024) (2)

Going home

I took the less traveled route

and beheld

in an inner harbor inlet

a concentration of herons.

On this day of frigid winds

and low temperatures

the birds had found shelter.

I had found confirmation:

for the many were one

as the sun subsided.

Receiving the Last Light 019 (1024x759) (2)

Camera in hand

I prayed with the herons…

one with the dying light.

Heron Haiku 063 (1024x767) (3)

I was ready to accept the approach of night.


January 12, 2014

Inner Harbor Transformed 046 (1024x768) (2)

Last week’s visit from the ice queen

hovers like a dream.

Here on the Mississippi Gulf,

we rarely get such drops in temperature.

(Today the early chill is softened by a generous sun.)

So to be greeted in the morning two days running

by the frigid beauty of her majesty’s passing

is like a miracle

that later one may doubt.

Pier Posts on An Icy Morning 024 (1024x768) (2)

Even photographs –

evidential as they are

of my brave venture with my camera

and my frozen fingers –

are dream-like in the after-viewing.

It has taken several days for me to truly see

the images as my reflected feelings;

to bring them forward and to claim them

as my personal response to ice,

to sun and shadow on ice,

and to exquisite cold.

Ice with Tree Shadow 022 (1024x768) (2)

Numb as they were,

my fingers must have been

completely sensitive to what I felt.

Extremes are evident:

the urge to fully engage,

the urge to flee from the intensity…

seek comfort in the heated confines

of a human dwelling.

I chose to stay and shiver

in the fleeting ecstasy of my belonging.

Icy Reflection 053 (758x1024) (2)

To gaze in awkward amazement

into winter’s challenging eye

until she let me go.

Ice Magic 030 (1024x767) (2)Branch Held by Ice 025 (1024x741) (2)I saw her magical design

within her abstract patterns.

I saw and felt the power

of her grip,

admiring broken shards

that still held fast.

I knew the beauty

of her harsh effect

upon the natural world.

Huddled Against The Cold 056 (1024x767) (3)

I wondered further into Inner Harbor,

to find a flock of pelicans in huddled stillness…

below the bridge.

By then I could not feel my hands,

yet when they chose to fly

from my encroachment,

I swung my body,

raised my camera,

caught their ascent above the ice.

Workshop windows, Clouds, and Ice on Inner Harbor 064 (1024x906)