Secrets

There is a superstition surrounding “The Scottish Play.” It is believed that Shakespeare used real witches’ spells when he was writing the tragedy, and the play is cursed. Stories of violence and death surround its productions throughout history. If anyone speaks the play’s real title in the theatre, or quotes any of the lines, the curse will be unleashed.

If you don’t know which play I’m talking about, please look it up elsewhere. I will not take any chances here! I never say the play’s name aloud no matter where I am. 🙂

scottishplay

Shakespeare isn’t the only artist to have secrets in his work. A painter might have a symbol he blends into all his paintings. An actor often has a secret on stage that he doesn’t reveal to the audience until the end of the play (if at all). When an author builds characters, there are often histories and subplots she never shares with her readers.

All these layers contribute to interesting, complex creations. On this day of mischief, I am wondering…do you have any secrets in your artwork?

 

Hamilton’s America

Who watched PBS’s Great Performances documentary Hamilton’s America on Friday? If you missed it, you can still stream it from the PBS.org website for a few more weeks. Thank you, PBS!

There was some great footage from the show and interviews too. It was interesting to see how it all started with one song— and how the musical built momentum. It became something Lin-Manuel Miranda had to write.

lin-manuel_hamiltonsamerica-lg

I couldn’t get enough of the show clips. They also showed us Lin-Manuel in the composing stage of My Shot. As he was envisioning the scene, we were shown the intense creative process that goes into his work. I loved seeing how he pieced together his ideas, leaving himself open to inspiration, and then how it all came together on stage.

One of my favorite moments was the conversation between Lin-Manuel Miranda, Stephen Sondheim, and John Weidman about research, artistic expression, and collaboration. We also got a peak of Lin-Manuel working “Cabinet Meetings” with his composing team.

Just awesome.

What’s next besides playing this documentary and the sound track repeatedly? I must get tickets to this show!

Fall Festival

The weather has cooled, and it is finally starting to feel like fall. Being a New Englander, as soon as September hits, I am ready to put on heavy sweaters and watch football. It takes the southern weather a little longer to come around here, but the air is feeling crisp in the mornings, and the leaves are starting to turn.

fall_mums_jarofcolorandlight-com

We went to an arts festival this past weekend. It was fun to see all the different projects: painting, mosaic, jewelry, wood carving, pottery, glass, metal—and then fusions of these mediums too. Many of the artists were local, so it was really cool to see what was going on in our own community.

I met a glass artist who mentioned that she was going to offer classes soon. I’ve always wanted to learn how to work with glass (making beads, stained glass, sun catchers!). I think I will add it to my list for 2017.

In the meantime, I am obsessed with these sweet little pieces of pottery I bought.

magnet_eifert_handcrafted_pottery

bud_vases_evening_shade

Five Tips to Maximize One Hour of Writing

When I took a short story fiction writing workshop earlier this year, I wasn’t sure I’d have any energy left to write after a long day at the office- but I had a deadline, and when you have a deadline, you become inventive with your time.

In addition to writing at night, I decided to try writing during my lunch hour—and I was surprised at how much I got done in that limited amount of time.

Whether if it’s first thing in the morning, after you drop off the kids at school, or right before bed, you can still make progress writing in just one hour a day.

Here are five tips to maximize one hour of writing:

  • Book it: Reserve your calendar like you would any other important commitment.
  • Make it a habit: If you can plan to write at the same time every day, it will become a habit. If you have to be flexible with the time of day, that’s okay too, which adds to my next point…
  • Find any space: You might need to be flexible with your writing space. This is counterintuitive to the idea of finding a sacred writing space and shutting out the world. If you have only one hour between other commitments, you might need to get used to writing on the go- in a potentially noisy space like a coffee shop or restaurant.
  • Plan for your next session: When you’re finished with your hour, make notes for your next writing session. Jot down where you left off and where you want to go next. Your “notes to your future self” (as I call them) will give you momentum for your next session.
  • Take notes: Your hour of writing will inspire more ideas at other times of the day. Be prepared to take notes in a notebook, digital notebook, or audio app.

Figure out what works for you, and you will discover time in your schedule you didn’t know you had. Even a few pages at a time will add up with consistent effort.

 

 

Have you marked your calendar?

Like most people, I still haven’t made it to New York to see the musical Hamilton. I’m just burning through the soundtrack until I can see it in person.

Lucky for us, PBS is airing their documentary, Hamilton’s America, on October 21st.

Just two weeks from today! I know I’m not the only one counting down the days!

I watched Lin-Manuel Miranda’s interview with Jimmy Fallon on The Tonight Show, and he said they have footage from the early days of Hamilton, when he was writing frantically, and before they knew what the musical was going to be.

Why do you write like you’re running out of time? –Hamilton, An American Musical

I can’t wait to see how it all came together. In the meantime, check out highlights from his talk at the Broadway Teachers Workshop as written by Howard Sherman.

Lin-Manuel is a great example of a creative soul who has followed his inspiration wholeheartedly. It is interesting to read how he got started. He even talks about creativity and mixed tapes. YES!

Photo Capture- Can’t Get Enough

I started this blog in June, and my goal for September was to post something every week. Goal achieved- woo hoo!

…Is anyone out there?

It’s okay…I am learning as I go, and one change I will make for October is to post on Mondays instead of Fridays. It is an optimistic way to start the week I think.

Today’s post will be brief, but I hope you will like these pictures.

Even though it’s officially fall, we decided to extend our summer by taking a weekend at the beach.

When I’m at the beach, I can’t get enough of the sights around me, and I always have my camera on-hand. Photography is another creative way to capture the light, patterns, colors, and beauty around us.

I took these pictures with my smart phone.

Happy Monday!

 

Sand Study

Sand Study

 

Two Dolphins

Two Dolphins

 

Color and Light

Color and Light

 

Evening Reflections

Evening Reflections