“Art is the lie that enables us to realize the truth.”
― Pablo Picasso
There is a company, Stampington Press, which produces many magazines about art and blogging and journaling.
This is the process I use and I find it a great escape, but check out the many magazines they offer online and in many stores, and see what process you want to design for yourself.
First, I pick some materials. In this case a photograph from 2008 of a Magnolia tree in bloom.
(If you are doing a hand piece, grab some paper, and a few tools: magic markers, pens, colored pencils, stickers, bling, and/or whatever you like, but don’t feel you must have the whole art supply cabinet with you. Once you have a few items, sit with them and see what emerges.)
Second, I pick some tools. In this case, Photoshop.
Third, I start playing. I work with this e-media in my day job, so to make it fun, I just try different filters and things I know how to do. In this case I duplicated and cropped the picture 4xs to make the frame, which also has lighting adjustments made to it.
Then I played with the Magnolia photo itself, enlarging it and filtering it.
Finally, I saved it and then started layering the layers. Then, all of a sudden: this photo was done.
I named it what lies beneath because it reminds me of a time when I bought a picture only to find others underneath it. A common experience for flea market investigators. I thought it would be fun to find a quote to go with it so I googled art quotes and Goodreads showed the quote by Picasso at the top. Serendipity, I guess.
In the Adirondacks, on Lake Placid, a boat tour guide will tell you as you as he slows the engine and pauses in front of the house that was Kate Smith’s, that she would sing from the balcony.
In the stillness last summer, I heard her famous voice belting out God Bless America.As if reverberating through the decades to wrap me, and US, in soothing protection.
In the quiet with no cell phones buzzing, in my mind’s eye, I saw Kate Smith on her balcony.My mother’s mother, I am told, loved Smith’s famous “God Bless America,” she had three sons in World War II.Perhaps that fact about my Grandmother made Kate Smith’s voice and spirit boom even louder for me that day.
They say your offspring will care about what you care about, and this, my grandmother’s love for Kate Smith and God Bless America is about the only thing I know about what rested in my grandmother’s soul.
Today feels heavy, but I pray we keep Hope and our values alive…just as Kate Smith did during World War II.
President Obama believes in us…he proved his campaign slogan and he is not dying.Obama hasled us, WE THE PEOPLE, to an inevitable tipping point.That veiled line between justice and injustice, … It is up to us now to keep dusting ourselves off and hear his voice to participate, help each other out, and believe that YES WE CAN!
My husband and I were talking late at night about what we saw during a lovely summer day.
Oh, he said, “I was walking near the lower pond and I saw the most beautiful fox running toward the Western field.” He went on to describe its golden-red color and the way it ran through the Western trail, long beautiful grasses on either side of it.
I then thought about my trip home and the beautiful animal I saw lying dead at the edge of the neighbor’s driveway. “I think I saw that fox.” “Where?” asked my husband. I told him.
“I wish you hadn’t told me that,” he said.
Perhaps one day, when we see these beautiful animals as road kill, we will cover them up, one by one, with a sheet. A day of reverence…this was actually my husband’s idea. I think it is a good one.A day of passage, a writ of honor.
“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.”
My Father would be 86 in a few days, he died years ago. But as if in warning of the precious reality of time, as if to remind himself, he often said this quote throughout the full 44 years I knew him.
Spring passes into summer, and through summer and autumn into winter, only the more surely, by its own ultimate return, to triumph over that grave, towards which it resolutely hastened from its first hour.
I found somewhere in my archives that at 16 I wanted to be a photojournalist. I was discovering the New York Times then and I was thinking action, adventure, and travel. That was good until I discovered in college, I really did not like flying, and until I discovered later in life, that I am a bit of a home body. Creature comforts trump adventure for me. So, as I am always telling my friend Myra, one must bloom where they are planted. Ironically, I am in the middle of a lot of vegetation and life with a gardener. So, here is a collection of some of the pictures, many of which have appeared here before.
This is St. Patrick’s Grammar School, the one my grandfather, Harry J. Lagonegro, an Elmira businessman and co-founder in 1912 of the Arctic League*, attended with Hal Roach, the famous Elmiran who produced the The Little Rascals comedy series. According to my Mother, they became life-long friends because they were outsiders, my grandfather was Italian and persona non grata in an Irish Catholic milue and Hal Roach was protestant.
At this same grammar school, my Mother, years later, with some real Irish blood in her, attended grammar school during World War II. I later attended religious education here. It is now, residential apartments.
This is the story…
sitting at my Mother’s kitchen table Saturday, I mentioned I might like to write a book about my public school teaching experience: the high school I taught at recently closed.
“Well,” boomed my Mother, “you will have to start with my getting hit with a yardstick in grammar school!”
“What?” I replied.
“Yes, one day Sister took me out into the hall, whacked me on the arm with a yardstick and screamed, ‘You are the Devil’s stool, You are the Devil’s stool.’
My mother started to laugh…”That is what I heard, but, of course, what she really said was ‘You are the Devil’s tool, you are the Devil’s tool.’ “
My mother was born in 1931 and three of her five brothers were soldiers in World War II. She went on to tell my husband and I that when she was having a bad day, she’d start sniveling a bit, and say, “We got a letter from my brother yesterday.” I surmise this kept some of the yardsticks away.
Recalling a different incident and not specifying whether it was before, or after, her whacking, my Mother said,
“I was so naïve, one day Sister asked the class if anyone had any old yardsticks they could bring in for her.”
My Mother continued, “I enthusiastically raised my hand and brought one in for her.”
My Mother raised her eyes to heaven as it to say, can you imagine. Yes, I can, women always at the ready to be helpful, and teachers that abused authority so badly the logical counterbalance was to take their authority away.