Artists in a Rose Garden

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“It was June, and the world smelled of roses. The sunshine was like powdered gold over the grassy hillside.”

Maud Hart Lovelace, Betsy-Tacy and Tib

Artists in a Rose Garden from Rebecca Budd aka Clanmother on Vimeo.

I have always considered the month of June a synonym for roses, for it is in this special time that the fragrance of this flower is especially sweet and enticing.  There is a fresh green to the leaves, a steadfastness to the petals that attracts the gentle buzz of bees. The sun has yet to show the heat of a summer’s day, the breeze still holds a crispness of late spring.

There is simply the rose; it is perfect in every moment of its existence.     

Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

Gather the rose of love whilst yet is time.     

Edmund Spenser

A ChasingART series on “Artists in the Garden” explores the connection between nature and the creative spirit.  Claude Monet, Vincent van Gogh, Gustav Klimt  and Paul Cézanne intuitively understood that gardens have restorative power to inspire, heal and bring a calmness that encourages freedom of thought. The intermingling of sun, soil, seeds, and water brings forth new life, even as an artist gives birth to an internal vision that seeks an outlet.

But the rose leaves herself upon the brier, For winds to kiss and grateful bees to feed.

John Keats

Gardens continue to work their seemingly magical powers.  A few days ago, I happened upon a rose garden with artists situated throughout the pathways, intent on their artistic endeavours.

 

I invite you to join me on my walk through a rose garden…

 

53 Seconds

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53 Seconds of Meditation.

Meditation has been defined as engaging in mental exercise, breathing deeply and repeatably so as to reach a special and elevated understanding of our place in the fast-paced, mercurial world that surrounds us.

Reflections, pondering or whatever you believe meditation to be – definitions are easier than the practical application. Simply because of our time-constraints and responsibilities. Our minds are active throughout the day, and according to brain research, achieve heightened activity in sleep.

Today, this is my way of slowing down! Happy meditating.

Stopping Time

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“We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.”  Anaïs Nin

I have often thought of this quote by Anaïs Nin – not in the context of a writer, but in the framework of a photo. Ever since Joseph Nicephore Niepce clicked the first photo in 1814, humanity has been beguiled by the ability to capture something important.  It is our only way to stop time, to remember our journeys, and proclaim that we have lived, felt love, endured challenges and sustained losses.

I confess that I am a “photo hoarder.”  Yes, even the photos that I consider “second best” remain safely stored on external drives in hopes that some day there may be an editing program that will be invented that will enhance and bring out their beauty. By beauty, I mean the emotional impression of that event.

Just last week, I went back to “taste life twice.”  The year was 2004.  I had purchased my first digital camera, a Canon Powershot A70, for a long-awaited trip to Italy to enroll in a 3-week Italian language course.  The reviews were as generous as I was enthusiastic: “The PowerShot A70 is much more than just a 3.2-megapixel version of its predecessor, the A40.”   I was convinced that this was an excellent purchase.

With a camera in hand, there is added emotional drama at play, more clarity, more interest in the “now.”  This awareness was most keenly felt when I walked the lush paths of Frederick Stibbert’s Garden.  It was a late October afternoon. A gentle light settled on the trees and aging walls, a faint wind tossed the leaves.  A quiet solitude lifted my spirits.  I had recently finished an arduous academic journey and was at a crossroads.

Looking back on these photos, I remember a pivotal decision, made with a recognition that we move in tune with the music of time, surrounded by those who came before and those who will come after. Our myths, our struggles, our joys are intermingled.  Perhaps it is in the retrospective, in knowing what happened afterwards, that reveals a greater understanding.  And with that knowledge, we move forward with profound resolve to embrace the next moment.

 

 

Never look back, unless…

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Have you ever said – “I wish we could go back to the good old days.”  Somehow,  we seem to forget that there were problems back then, too!!

“Never look back unless you are planning to go that way.” 
Henry David Thoreau