Monday, April 23, 2012


I am sitting at the kitchen table looking out over the pond behind our house.  My feet are cold against the ceramic tile floor.  I think I'll have some hot tea to wash down the remnants of this morning's oatmeal.  I hear the tiny chirps of the newly hatched baby birds tucked in the nest in the hanging back porch light.  My Pops tells me they are House Finch.  Pretty little birds that are tinted a salmon pink.  My fat gray cat stretches even further over my notebook lazily trying to prevent me from writing any more.  He yawns and blows his mildly pungent kitty breath in my face.

I take in the floral aroma of the Jasmine tea I just brewed.

It's sunny again today and the outdoors beckon me to finish planting my flower bed.  I'm still a little sore from having worked in it the past two days.  But, I know I'll end up there anyway.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Saying "I'm done".

"Down in the Canyon"  Acrylic on canvas 11"x 14" by Amanda Chea

"Canyon" detail

I experimented with some techniques to get the sky the way I wanted and I think this photo shows that a bit better.

Sometimes, though you might feel an urge to the contrary, you've just gotta walk away.

That's what I had to do, several times, with this painting.

When I started out on the blank canvas, the painting I ended up with is not what I planned for or envisioned.  But actually, that's what I like about art.  Sometimes you just go forth and do and just see what you come up with.  Sometimes it's a wreck (that you can just cover up with something better later) or it ends up being a pleasant surprise.  While this painting probably isn't perfect or going to end up winning any awards, I was pleasantly surprised with how it turned out.  And I honestly think it reflects the mood of what I was reading and the music I was listening to while it was in progress.

And in the end I had to quit fiddling with it, walk away and call it DONE.  And I'm glad I did.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

No regrets.

Today I responded to this blog post with:

It's like you're my sister from another mother. When I read this it's like I could have written it all myself. I'm sure we're different in many ways but wow, this is all so true for me too. I have literally had crying meltdowns at various points in life over the desire to be the best at something. It was basically a big sob-fest sounding something like, "I'm not great at anything! What am I good for? Nothing. I suck..waa waa waaaaa..." But...I have most certainly tried on many hats. And I go through many obsessions. I've tried all types of hand crafts. I've belly-danced, done yoga, practiced at a Buddhist temple and been a burlesque dancer. I've volunteered at a sheep farm, painted paintings, briefly been a vegetarian, thought I'd write the great American novel, had notions of selling produce at a farmer's market.
In other words, I've tried many many things. I've been good at some. Some never materialized...although who's to say they still couldn't?

My mother (who is very much an introvert), once told me she admired me for all this even though she teases me about it. She said that I'm BRAVE for just going out and seeking what interests me or going for what I want (whether I completely follow through or not).

And you are BRAVE too.

I wrote this to the Asst. Director of Squam.  Squam (by the Sea) is where I am headed in October.  It's an art workshop, the name of a lake, a community of like minded creative seekers.  I am headed there all by my lonesome.

It's like I feel this pull to be there.  To feel the magic I've heard about.  I've already fallen in love with the people I've corresponded with who are responsible for organizing it.

I suppose I imagine it as a creative pilgrimage.  An experience.  A way of experiencing myself.

Maybe I'm romanticizing.  But no matter.

I'm not sure what my whole point was in going on like this.  I guess I just want to encourage the few people who might read this to seek out new experiences...even if they find they are scared.  I have had nerves and trepidation in every one of the new things I've tried (and to date, there are many).  But I made myself anyway and was always glad I gave it a go.  I don't want to live with regrets.

And I hope that you don't as well.