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Art with Lórien Studio set

Art with Lórien Studio Video Production Set

Hello My People!

It has been a bit since I have posted here, and I will just say that I have been involved!  Involved with creating and producing lots of art and art education content!  Whew!  Check it all out on my website, especially take a look at Art with Lórien, my fairly new online learning platform and community!  Woot!  I have also been up to the following hobby of mine, which is supporting women in the media.  One of my favorite organizations is the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, an organization that engages, educates, and influences the need to dramatically improve gender balance, reduce stereotyping and create diverse female characters in entertainment targeting children 11 and under.

Also, I am a huge fan of the #heforshe campaign that Emma Watson launched with the support of the UN Women organization.  Check that one out and recruit your guys to support!  🙂

One of the “armchair” ways that I support women in the media, is my consumption of films that are directed by women, are written by a woman and/or feature stories about women.  One of my guiding litmus tests for the content of a film, is applying the Bechdel test.  What is  the Bechdel test you may wonder?  It asks whether a work of fiction features at least two women who talk to each other about something other than a man. The requirement that the two women must be named is sometimes added.

So, to solidify my commitment to my hobby and quest, in January 2016, I pledged to watch one film per week as part of the #52FilmsByWomen campaign sponsored by Women in Film.  What I am really excited about is discovering the #52weeks List of Gayle Nachlis, Women in Film Senior Director of Education, so many superb films on her list! I also learned about Film Fatales, a network of women filmmakers who meet regularly to mentor each other, share resources, collaborate on projects and build a supportive community in which to make their films. Here’s Film Fatales list of films directed by women streaming on Netflix USA, 245 and counting!

In other news this year on my journey, I went a red-carpet premier in Hollywood at the TCL Chinese Theater where the series was created and written by a woman.  Even though the content was not my style, too much violence and cursing, it’s always good to see a woman get up and address a full theater of guests (invited) viewers, supporters and talk about their vision being supported, funded and birthed into the world!  Super cool!

And, so as we approach the end of 2016, and my 52-week pledge, I am sharing what I have enjoyed so far… And, I do pledge to continue into 2017 and beyond.  With our evolving landscape, values, priorities and the balancing act that is occurring, there will be much to catch on the screen, big and small!  Enjoy and join the fun!

MY LIST from 2016 so far: (in no specific order)

Miss Representation- Watched this in 2014- a must see on the topic.

The Women’s List

Jenny’s Wedding

Joy

Bessie

Iron Lady

Mustang

Woman in Gold

What Happened Miss Simone?

True Cost

Diana

Tig

Tangerine

Trainwreck

Hello, My Name is Doris

All About Eve

The Story of Ruth

East Side Sushi

Séraphine

The Lady in the Van

Coco Before Chanel

Suffragette

Brooklyn

Carol

Joan of Arc: Virgin Warrior

He Named Me Malala

Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel

Hanna

Miss Potter

The Passion of Joan of Arc

Maggie’s Plan

Frida

India’s Daughter

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny

Zootopia

Me Before You

Dukhtar

Girlhood

Middle of Nowhere

Selma

Ride

Pariah

Orion: The Man Who Would be King

The Letters

Big Stone Gap

Under the Same Moon

Testament of Youth

Still Alice

What Other Couples Do

A Ballerina’s Tale

Conviction

The Intern

Me Without You

Under a Tuscan Sun

Ai Wei Wei Never Sorry

Citizen Four

 

and counting…

And, please take a look at a blog post here from earlier this year that features a new documentary called Seeing Is Believing: Women Direct by friend Cady McClain,  She is directing, writing, and producing along with Kate Super.

Thank you for reading and I invite you to share your contributions via comments and connections and would love to hear your comments here, reach out via my Facebook page, check out my Art with Lórien art classes on YouTube, get to my website, or email me at artwork@lorieneck.com.

May your days be filled with a sense of wonder, love, creativity, adventure and play!

In love, gratitude and beauty…

Lórien Signature fuschia_small

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insta_WaterIIIWith one of my healing Water paintings, Water III. To lean more about my Water Series, click here.

I am thrilled to start up a new blog series theme: Artist Interviews.  In this blog series, I will be interviewing inspirational artists and will sharing these insightful and inspirational messages in a variety of ways that I look forward to launching soon!  For now, I am sharing the first interview of yours truly.  In 2014, I was interviewed by Art 4 All People as part of an art exhibition focused on arts and healing.

Here is the interview, short and sweet!

How would you describe Transformative Art? 

Transformative Art is art that reaches into the soul and acts as a mirror revealing the deep and rich inner beauty of the Self, as well as the shadow self.  It has the power to shift consciousness and not only raise the vibration of an individual, but shift the collective consciousness.

What inspires your own Art and what does Art mean to you? 

My own spiritual journey and quest for beauty, for what is true, and as a devotion to the Sacred is what informs and inspires my art practice.

In my experience, art serves as a visual response to the questions that one asks or that the collective is asking.  For example, questions about the nature of reality, what it means to be a Spiritual being having a human experience, or about what is possible in the human experience.

As an Artist what is the significance of doing Transformative Art in these times, in this century in the now?

If an individual feels the call to create and share their art with the world, the significance of doing Transformative art now is ad infinitum.  Art is a bridge between the mundane and the Sacred and has the capacity to bridge the gap of disparity between suffering and pure bliss. Artistic expression gives meaning and healing to the human condition.  Art is the glue of the Universe and provides a safe space for the Soul to rest and take refuge.  More than ever, art and artists serve as the foundation for the evolution of human consciousness.

 

Thank you for reading and I invite you to share your contributions via comments and connections and would love to hear your comments here, reach out via my facebook page, check out my Art with Lórien art classes on YouTube or email me at artwork@lorieneck.com.

May your days be filled with a sense of wonder, love, creativity, adventure and play!

In love, gratitude and beauty…

Lórien Signature fuschia_small

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I met Sara when we were seeking a great place and teacher to spin with this winter!  When I took that first spinning class with Sara, I knew that I had found what I was looking for; an inspired, passionate and motivating force of nature!  Sara was instantly our favorite guide leading us spinners (cycling and otherwise!) for our one-hour ride of what she calls “sweat therapy”!  And it was, as I felt not only sweaty from the intense cardio workout groovin’ to fun, uplifting playlists, but I had also received as a bonus, the feeling of release that is the often by product of a cathartic therapy session! I knew that I had to get to know Sara, and when I learned about The Fly Buddha, I understood more about what made her special brand of inspirational magic so tangible! Sara is a fired up more than survivor, but what I would call a thriver in life!  I am so happy that Sara said YES to sharing her inspirations with us here through my What Inspires You? Blog Series!  Thank you Sara!

~~~~

Raw, Emotional Humans

Raw, emotional humans. My favorite. So real. So strong. So present to the now. So willing to rise above. Acknowledging all their feels in every dark corner and in each ray of light. They hide nothing. Expression and truth is the game. Connection and growth is their goal. 

Once a month I lead a room full of THIS…pure, beautiful, unapologetic vulnerability. Men and women showing up, ready to give and needing to take. We talk cancer. We talk pain. We talk what is and what could be. On the table it goes for one to release and someone to pick up. It’s awesome. It’s powerful. It’s as uplifting as it comes. 

I leave those nights changed. My heart with more empathy and my mind greater depths of compassion. For the unfiltered truth is all that matters in the end. Humans being human – real, raw, expressive feelers – ebbing and flowing, leaning and bracing as we journey together on this ride of life.

Raw, emotional humans. This is what inspires me. xoxo 

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Warrior DTLA
Bio:

Just months after my 30th birthday, I was diagnosed with cervical cancer. It hit me with the weight of a ton of bricks. My life suddenly filled with uncertainty, the future no longer a guarantee, and the days of motherhood stripped away from me before I had the chance to create miracles of my own. I spent the weeks that followed with a heavy heart focused on survival and acceptance of this altered life.

Then I got an introduction to the Southern California Reproductive Center where a beautiful new focus, one centered around hope and the possibility of “mini-mes” one day, gave me something to look forward to – something to carry me through. Under the care of Dr. Surrey and his staff I was able to freeze 18 eggs before beginning my cancer treatment.

Now, three years later and cancer free, I’m happy I gave myself this gift! I have so much excitement in my soul thinking about the next chapter of my life when I get to play the most important role I could ever imagine – that of a loving, grateful mama.

After my experience, I felt pulled to bring more awareness to egg freezing as an option to women diagnosed with gynecological cancer as well as provide financial assistance and resources during the process. Saving my eggs brought hope into my life at an extremely hopeless, fear-filled time. It is my mission to give this same powerful sense of hope and beautiful gift of motherhood to every woman who faces a similar journey through my foundation, The Fly Buddha

“Compassion is not a relationship between the healer and the wounded. It’s a relationship between equals. Only when we know our own darkness well can we be present with the darkness of others. Compassion becomes real when we recognize our shared humanity.” 
― Pema ChödrönThe Places That Scare You: A Guide to Fearlessness in Difficult Times
Contact Info:
Sara Krish // Founder, Mentor, Cancer Warrior
Follow on IG/FB @theflybuddha

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My featured Guest Blogger is Cady McClain.  I met Cady through a mutual friend from my childhood and boy am I glad that she reached out!  We connected through our shared interest and passion for women’s voices and representation in the field of arts, both visual and performing.  My video post on balancing the genders in the arts connected us online and I am so inspired and excited about the powerfully awesome documentary film that Cady is directing, writing, and producing along with Kate Super.  I promise, you will feel inspired and like me, looking forward to the release of her film.  Thank you Cady for being you and sharing your inspiration here and with the world!
Cady’s Blog Post:
For the past five months, I’ve had the honor and privilege of getting to interview women who direct film, television, and theater for a documentary I am working on called Seeing Is Believing: Women Direct. I’d like to share with you a little bit about a couple of women I’ve spoken to in order to give you a bit of the inspiration I’m enjoying!
Leah Meyerhoff is the founder of a group called “Film Fatales,” and graduated from NYU Film School with an amazing film called I Believe in Unicorns, a coming of age story filmed so sensitively, so creatively, I practically felt like she was whispering to my inner teenager. Film Fatales consists of female filmmakers who create “peer-to-peer mentorship” by meeting once a month at each others’ houses and participating in conversations that help each host with a topic related to the project on which she is currently working. This organization is also making a mark on the Independent film scene with its outreach programs and support of filmmakers on the circuit. I admire Leah so much I was practically shaking when I met her, but by the end of our conversation I felt quite at ease. She’s that kind of person. Incredibly well-spoken and clear, thoughtful and kind, super organized (which I loved), and without the slightest tinge of bitterness for the gender bias that is so rampant in our industry. She says that she “took the script and flipped it,” and I love that expression. Instead of identifying herself as being at the hand of gender discrimination, she proudly took on the label of “woman director” and created a whole movement of creative women who are now all owning their gender status and creating flourishing careers. I am proud to say I am now a fellow fatale!
 
Screen Shot 2016-01-07 at 8.02
 (This is Leah Meyerhoff with a traveling coffee mug that looks like a camera lens. A gift from me to her as a “thank you” for her wise words and journey!)
I also got to interview Deborah Kampmeier  whose first film, Virgin, had a huge run on the festival circuit, and whose second film, Hounddog, caused an international scandal due to its subject matter: the rape of a child. Honestly, I was very concerned myself about watching the film, but I’m so glad I did. It’s a beautiful film and nothing like what it was made out to be. Sensitively done, considerate and respectful to the issue of sexuality in a developing girl, and surprisingly insightful into female sexuality. Deborah works with a passionate authenticity and a deep respect of her and others “womanhood.” She understands things about being a woman that I never heard anyone say, or even suggest. Listening to her talk I was brought to tears by her commitment to her artistry, and her passion for her unique vision. Her work is daring, original, and important, and reminded me that I must take risks in my own work, despite everything.
Deborah
(This is a shot of my interview with Deborah, taken while playing back on my big screen TV!)
I think that is what really inspires me the most: women committing to their unique vision, despite all. No matter what anyone says, no matter what the statistics are, they persevere, the drive forward. Sure, everybody gets afraid sometimes. But these women (and many more) don’t submit to the fear. They continue to stay above water and true to themselves. There’s no being shut down by “the business” and all that talk about how you “have to compromise.” No mam. They talk about being clear about who they are, what they love, and how to work in spite of the obstacles.
And that’s inspiring stuff!
Here’s a link to a promo about the film: https://vimeo.com/145945236
And to the films’ FB page: https://www.facebook.com/WomenDirectors
Cady
(And this is me with Mr. Peanut, my loyal and loving super buddy.)

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Paula Youmell is a holistic health nurse whom I met when I was living in Northern New York.  I had an opportunity to see Paula in action when she presented at the Holistic Health Fair that we organized in the town of Potsdam, she is an amazingly knowledgeable enthusiastic teacher of holistic health, whole foods and natural healing I must say!  Paula continues to inspire me with her blog Wise Women Red Tent blog posts which I read voraciously! Here’s Paula’s Top 10 list of what she is grateful for as a Wise Woman Nurse!  Thank you Paula!

Paula title image#1. I can create my schedule to include hang out time with my two boys: Jake 16 and Eli 13. That’s me, Mom, in the middle.  I can see a client, take off into the woods for a walk or swim with my kids and dog (maybe both), and get back to clients again later!

#2. I get to do what I have a fiery passion for: inspire others to change their lifestyle and heal through nature. I grew up watching my grandfather make his own herbal medicines. These images of my grandpa-witch doctor (as my sisters and I called him) stuck with me. Right out of nursing school I started looking for natural ways to heal all the ills I encountered in my hospital RN duties.

point 3#3. I work from my home saving gas and time from the stress of commuting to work. I can get up from my desk, do laps about the house (I have 2 sets of stairs which makes for interesting figure 8s and loops upstairs & down!), toss in a couple of yoga poses to stretch and expand, and get back into the work mode feeling refreshed!

 Paula 4#4. I can whip up awesome, whole food meals for my kids using locally sourced fruits & veggies, meats, eggs, dairy, etc. This is much easier as I am at home. The time spent commuting can be spent cooking. I set my own hours and can be finished with wearing my Wise Woman Nurse’s hat by 4 or 4:30 to have an amazing and nourishing meal on the table by 5:30. As a heal by nature & whole foods kind of gal… this is very important to me. Paula 5#5. I can work in my jammies! Yup, that’s correct: If I am working with phone clients or taking a day to work on my book projects (I have written two healing books so far!) I can stay in my jammies just as long as I want. It is always amusing for the UPS man to catch me in my jammies at 1 PM!  I can blast classic rock and jam in my jammies on my periodic romps through my home to loosen up and lighten up. Sitting all day is such a drag!  Yes, I am straight out of bed, pull my hair up, in this picture and the Garfield nighty… it is 31 years old!

#6. I’m my own grandma. Oops, wait, I meant boss. I am my own boss! This is an amazing gift to myself. I am totally in control of how my business is run and how the boss treats me.

Paula 7#7. I can schedule time or days off for yoga classes, longer walks in the woods, field trips with my kids & their school, exciting alone day trips, and my continuing education. Sure I make up that time later, doing evening & weekend work, but I am the ultimate scheduler of my time.

Paula 8#8: I meet, support, and create friendships with the most amazing people! This is deeply satisfying to draw positive energy and people into my life. Here I am with a group of local gals whipping up herbal medicines. This is what I mean about satisfying work and relationships!

Paula 9#9: Little by little the work I do, and so many others too, we are creating a paradigm shift on this planet. We are teaching others to re-connect with nature (because we are nature) and how to care better for ourselves, this planet we live on, and all the other beings we share this planet with. This, my friends, is HUGE!

Paula 10#10. I can live in rhythm with the cycles of nature: getting up when I wake up (which is usually 6 AM!) and tucking into bed when the sun says goodbye for the day and/or I am just plain beat. Not having an alarm clock setting off a stress response in my body, jarring me out of my sleep, is a perk of being my own boss (or was it my own grandma?).

For these reasons, and many more I could come up with, I am grateful I have listened to my inner wisdom and followed my path as a Wise Woman Nurse, here to support others on their paths to more vibrant health.

Namasté

Paula Youmell, RN, Wise Woman Nurse

Youmell PaulaPaula Youmell, RN is a Wise Woman Nurse,

Natural Health Educator, and Author in Potsdam, NY.

www.PaulaYoumellRN.com

 

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fire I 95%Fire I, close up, 3’x4′, Mixed media on canvas, ©LEAD

Love is particular.

When you love someone,

A tangible, touchable someone,

The whole world opens up.

If you want to know the universe,

Dare to love one person.

All the secret teachings are here–

Go deeper, and deeper still.

The gift of concentration

Is the spaciousness that surrounds it.

Focus illuminates immensity.

Sutra 99

The Radiance Sutras: 112 Gateways to the Yoga of Wonder and Delight

(English and Sanskrit Edition, Lorin Roche, Ph.D.)

To love is to pay attention, to give attention, to tend to the being that is YOU or the being/s in front of you.  As I read this sutra above and allow its essence to permeate my awareness, my thoughts and feelings vacillate between the Self and the “other.”  Daring to love me, to know thyself through loving, tending to my own rich tapestry of intricacies is a day to day practice of tending my lifelong journey of wonder, magic, delight and actualization.  The word attention itself is derived from the words tender, tenderness, to tend to it.  Paying attention to the soul, the Self can be as natural as breathing, and is by default, a way of loving the Self.  We love ourselves as we pay attention to our physical needs, our emotional shifts, our thoughts about ourselves and our longings and yearnings in this life.  This way of perceiving how I love myself has been a refreshing, compassionate, kind and gentle way forward as I move forward on my life path.

Self love is the foundation for all other types of love.  Through my own deepening practice of Self love, I am progressively learning to love all else in a more attentive way… from my love for others, for the planet, for what I do, what I create, and everything else that I pay attention to that is outside the boundaries of this being that is Lórien.

love yourself_photog. unknown

Isn’t this perspective an exciting, beautiful and interesting method of loving the Self ?  Since this discovery, I have been in a constantly deepening state of awe, spaciousness and curiosity in love and life.  Awakening to loving myself in this way is transforming all of my interactions with others, from drivers on my morning commute, to my art students, to my more intimate connections, like family and close friends, and of course touching the details and entirety of my life existence in a way that is immeasurable, yet tangible at the same time.

I especially enjoy this line from Lorin Roche, “Love is a state of perceiving great value in the beloved.”  Love can therefore be a practice of paying attention and appreciating the layered nuances of the Beloved Self from the first moments of awakening in the morning to the last moments of alertness before falling into sleep and dream at night.  Aaahhhhhh…

Cast aside the ten thousand things,

And love only one.

Don’t go on to another.

Engage your lively awareness

With this one focus–

One object, one thought, one symbol.

Now go inside,

Find the center.

The soul, the heart.

Right here,

In the middle of the feeling,

Attend the blossoming–

Attention vast as the sky.

Sutra 39

The Radiance Sutras, Lorin Roche, Ph.D.

fire III palette_fuschia

Thank you for reading and I invite you to share your contributions via comments and connections and would love to hear your comments here, reach out via my facebook page, or email me at lorien@lorieneck.com.

May your days be filled with a sense of wonder, love, creativity, adventure and play!

In love, gratitude and beauty…

Lórien Signature fuschia_small

Personally Experienced and Recommended Resources

Gently Moving Forward

Change Your Energy, Change Your Life with Kathleen Nelson Troyer

The Radiance Sutras

Paths to Enlightenment in Everyday Life

as translated by Lorin Roche, Ph.D.

Elixir

Songs of the Radiance Sutras

Sample Track: Go There

www.lorieneck.com

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abundant thinking

Happy New Year 2015 my friends!  My wish for you is that this IS your BEST YEAR EVER!  How BIG are you dreaming these days?  What’s in your heart to BE, BEcome and express in this coming year?  We are still in the window of newness and opportunity, so if you are still feeling the transition from 2014 into 2015, it’s okay, totally okay.  It’s not an “overnight” thing, but a gradual process that require time and space.  One of the rituals that I found to be very helpful in my own transition around the end of 2014/New Year’s Eve was to dedicate a block of time to journal and move through a completion exercise that my friend’s Life Coaches Kat and Elizabeth of Journey Into Being Retreats created.  The exercise is guided through an audio Podcast as well as a written text and is a series of reflective questions for your journal.  Here it is for you to check out and do, Podcast: Completions.

Both whilst and after doing the Completions exercise, I felt so much lighter and most importantly, more complete with the last 12-month cycle so that I can move forward intentionally, powerfully, clearly and confidently into 2015!  I have BIG dreams, visions and am super excited to bring these immaterial realities into manifestation!  Woo hoo!  And, I look forward to sharing my creative dreams with YOU via my website www.lorieneck.com and here of course.

So far this year, I have been “in” my sunny outdoor studio painting two of my large-scale paintings within my Fire Series and larger Elements Collection. Here’s a little teaser about the amazing story and impetus for my latest body of work.

fire nov new 2Fire I-She (excerpt) 3’X4′ Mixed Media on Canvas

The inspiration for Fire and Water.
Legends speak of an ancient culture of advanced beings, submerged in the ocean and buried beneath the sands of time. Not of the lost city of Atlantis, but an entire continent known to us only as “Mu.” The inhabitants of Mu are said to have been artistically and spiritually inclined, and those immortal energies live on in the paintings and vision of Lórien.

Water IV Dec. 11Water IV, (excerpt) 4’X5′ Mixed Media on Canvas

I am looking super forward to sharing more about the magical and fascinating story of the Earth across time through my paintings.

Thank you for reading and I invite you to share your contributions via comments and connections and would love to hear your comments here, reach out via my face book page, or email me at lorien@lorieneck.com.

May your year ahead be filled with more love, more peace, more creativity, fun, adventure and play!

In love, gratitude and beauty…

Lórien Signature fuschia_small

Personally Experienced and Recommended Resources

Journey Into Being Retreat

Quantum Meditation and Transformation

The Reach Approach

Copy Caravan

Conscious Calendars

And, a fun Upcoming Cosmic newsflash  I just learned about from my friend Kathleen Whalen, a Vedic Astrologer and Conscious Calendars founder.

We have a comet visible in the skies right now in Orion’s belt.  http://www.virtualtelescope.eu/webtv/

Next LIVE viewing of the comet is Sunday January 11, 2015 20:00 UT.

 

www.lorieneck.com

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