December 9, 2010

Artist Dates: Patiently Painting

I know the face, familiar stranger,
I’m not a child, I feel misunderstood,
I built a bridge; we use the tunnel now,
The rope we are pulling is slipping away from me,
All this wasted time is killing me,
And I’ve started to feel like…
I cannot control my life anymore,
Feel a need to leave and breathe on my own,
I remember all the broken songs of our lives.
Maybe one more wrong will make it alright…”
                                                                        ~ “Breathing” by Sonata Arctica
            For my artist date I chose to listen to music on my MP3 player and work on my paint-by-number of a wolf. During my hour spent, I reflected on different things and finished most of colour number five on my paint-by-number. Some of the songs I listened to were “Only the Good Die Young” by Billy Joel, “You’ll be in my Heart” from Tarzan, “Breathe” by Taylor Swift, and “Seasons in the Sun” by Terry Jacks. The song I felt impacted me the most was “Breathing” by Sonata Arctica, which inspired most of my reflections on how I was feeling in that moment.
            I chose to work on my paint-by-number because it was something I haven’t done in a while, and it was an appropriate creative outlet for my snow day off. It also helped me to just sit, relax and organize my thoughts, which is something else I haven’t done in a while. During my artist date, I reflected upon my school courses, being the main event in my life at the moment. I came to a realization about what was bothering me at the moment; that what I really wanted right now was to step back and study what I wanted, and not what I had to in order to get into school or fill up my courses. I found myself wishing that I would have more time to commit to English and Writer’s Craft instead of Philosophy which is simply flying over my head.
This was reflected in the lyrics by Sonata Arctica, which explains why it struck a chord with me. The song speaks of something familiar, yet foreign, that is invading the singer’s life. It tells of trying to understand what’s happening, but not understanding anymore, and wanted to break away from that. I found that’s also what I wanted out of school; that information was being flung at me that I recognized, but didn’t understand, but when I tried to, we were learning something else. I was losing my grip on the knowledge I had attained, it being challenged in Philosophy daily. And I don’t feel like I have a choice anymore to study what I want, to step away from school and take some time to just study Shakespeare and writing on my own, remembering all the knowledge that had got me this far. Yet I still keep going back and over committing myself to understanding something that isn’t my first interest.
After the date, I felt more solid in the realization of what I wanted, but nervous at the thought of committing myself less to Philosophy. I think I really need those Christmas holidays soon to refocus and catch up, though the three snow days were a welcome break for now.

Amanda Out.
Lyrics to “Breathing” by Sonata Arctica
I take my hat off,
Bow before the greatness,
You’re so much braver I give you credit for.
Somehow the grays create a harmony,
And no colour can add a flavour,
I’ve started to feel like…

I know the face, familiar stranger,
I’m not a child, I feel misunderstood.
I built a bridge; we use the tunnel now,
The rope we are pulling is slipping away from me,
All this wasted time is killing me,
And I’ve started to feel like…

[x2] I cannot control my life anymore,
Feel a need to leave and breathe on my own,
I remember all the broken songs of our lives,
Maybe one more wrong will make it alright,
I just really need to be alone now…

December 5, 2010

The Artist Date - Jazz and Jigsaw

“Let it go.
Let it roll right off your shoulder,
Don’t you know?
The hardest part is over.
Let it in.
Let your clarity define you,
In the end,
We will only just remember how it feels.”
                                                                                                ~ Rob Thomas, “Little Wonders
                For this artist date, I chose to listen to music on and do 120 piece jigsaw puzzles online. Some of the songs I listened to were “As If the World Wasn’t Ending” and “Breathing by Sonata Arctica, “Lullaby” by Brahms, “Beauty” by Shaye, “Death and All His Friends” by Coldplay, and the above quoted “Little Wonders” by Rob Thomas. “Little Wonders” really resonated with me during this artist date; I ended up going back to it and listening to it several times over the course of my time spent doing puzzles.
                I chose to do puzzles instead of something a little more creative because I spent most of my last week toiling over my Philosophy final project (among other projects) and knew I wouldn’t enjoy myself if I just smacked myself into something creative instead of unwinding from logic mode. I learned a few years back that I have an ambidextrous brain, and I actually get headaches if I go from the extreme logic of something like science or philosophy to the intense creativeness of poetry or painting. I was also extremely stressed out and tense, so I decided I needed something relaxing (music) and something creative that still demanded logical thinking (puzzles). I hoped that through my artist date I could let go of the stresses of last week and look into the new week creatively.
                Now, after my date, I do feel a little more relaxed and open minded, although I’m starting to stress again because writing this out is reminding me of all the other work I still have to do. But I’m feeling creative enough for sure to launch into something more creative now. I kind of want to paint right now actually, but the practical part of my brain is telling me my open minded-ness is better applied to “Hamlet” by Shakespeare than to a giant piece of paper and some paint.
                The date definitely helped me wind down from the past week’s stress so I can look into the new week with a calmer approach. It aided me in realizing how much I needed to hear, “It’s over. It’s done. Move on.” It also helped me to relax a lot of the burdens weighing me down by calming me so I could think clearly and plan out my tasks. I think that’s why the song “Little Wonders” resonated so well with me during this time spent, because the song speaks of enjoying the moment and not letting other things hold you back from enjoying it. It also talks about how these moments make up our life, and even though we move on, they’ll still be there because we remember them. It really talks about how beautiful the word “Finished” is. Done. Wow. You’re still lingering in the amazement of “I did that, I finished it” but starting to get into “Finally, it’s over.” And I think that’s a place I needed to get out of so I could create again, and somewhat more importantly to me, enjoy “Hamlet.” The question now is, when I read it, will I want to hug Hamlet and tell him it’s all going to be okay? Or will I want to tell him to stop whining and move on? I have a feeling it will be the latter. But alas, it’s all about how you experience the moment. Okay, really Philosophy, stop coming back to me.

Amanda was here.

The Artist Date - Coloured Pencils

Another turning point, a fork stuck in the road.
Time grabs you by the wrist, directs you where to go.
So make the best of this test, and don’t ask why.
It’s not a question, but a lesson learned in time.

It’s something unpredictable, but in the end it’s right.
I hope you had the time of your life.”
-          Green Day, "Time of Your Life"
For our artist date, we chose to draw and colour a picture of Artist Child. We did this while listening to songs on our MP3 player, some of our favourite songs. Artist Child got to choose which songs we skipped and which we listened to. Some of the songs we chose to listen to were "Murmel Murmel Murmel" by Robert Munsch, "Safety Dance" by Men Without Hats, "Something There" from "Beauty and the Beast", and "The Best Day" by Taylor Swift. The song we listened to when we finished was "Time of Your Life" by Green Day, which we both thought was a very good finishing song and one we should include in our reflection. Artist Child thought it described the start of our reunited friendship very well.
We chose to draw of picture of Artist Child because she thought it was a good way for me to get to know her better. We also picked drawing because it’s something I’ve rarely done since I was little because I was never very good at it. Artist Child told me that I should try now anyways, and it would look good to me when I was done.  She took her one braid out at the beginning because she liked it better that way. She had just finished doing some finger painting when we started our date and didn’t have time to clean up yet! We hoped that by sharing some time together we would start off our friendship again after being apart so long. I asked Artist Child why she was wearing glasses now, even though I don’t wear them. She said that she liked wearing them and that I would like them someday too. That scared me a little bit. Is Artist Child trying to tell me I’ll be blind later? She’s laughing at me.
After our date now, we both feel really happy, happier than we’ve been in a long time. We feel almost free, free from responsibility. When we were working on the drawing, we felt nothing though, but in a good way. We blocked out everything (even the music sometimes and forgot to switch it!), and felt a lot more connected that way, like we were working together. It made us feel little again, accidently colouring outside the lines sometimes, and we even stuck out our tongue once we were concentrating so much.
The date really helped to inspire creativity, which is why we chose to colour the drawing. The colours that we picked were really important Artist Child said. I wanted to use purple, but Artist Child wouldn’t let me because she said that purple was the colour I hid behind all the time, the colour that I was supposed to like. She told me to use red and green and yellow because I liked them better really. I chose green for the paint instead of red so she wouldn’t look all bloody, and she thought that was a good idea too. But she told me that the buttons on her overalls should be red, the little things. She said that they should be red because they’re like the little bits of hurt we have to remember, but are okay to remember. That hurt was okay sometimes. I put a Band-Aid on her arm so that some of the hurt would be better. Then I coloured the paint green and Artist Child said it was like the growing things outside that we could paint, all the wonderful things outside that used to amaze us. I didn’t know what colour to colour her T-shirt, and she told me I should colour it yellow like sunshine. This reminded us of the song "You Are My Sunshine" that we always used to sing when we were little. It also reminded us of Mr. Sutch who helped me connect with Artist Child when I was scared in Grade 9. "You Are My Sunshine" was the first song I learned how to play on Clarinet, Alto Sax and Bari Sax. Now I call people “sunshine” a lot because they are all my sunshines! Artist Child says she thinks they are too. She wants me to write out "You Are My Sunshine" for you.
“You are my sunshine, my only sunshine.
You make me happy, when skies are gray.
You never know dear, how much I love you.
Please don’t take my sunshine away.”
~ Jimmy Davis, "You Are My Sunshine"
                We wished that we had that song on our MP3 to listen to while we drew our picture of Artist Child, but we don’t. We’re listening to it on the computer now though.
                Artist Child wants you to have the picture to go with the reflection, but she wants to know if she could have it back really really soon so that I can hang it on my wall. She hopes that that’s okay.

Amanda and Artist Child.

November 18, 2010

Come On Guys, Don't Neglect the Guys

So I was invited to this stupid facebook event for the eradication of violence against women, which, don't get me wrong, I'm totally for. But take a look at the description:

Come to school and/or work without any make-up. Also, don't dress up and wear plain clothing such as a T-Shirt and sweats/jeans. No jewlery or any accessories and don't do your hair, just leave it down or a plain ponytail. Just go natural. You can write somewhere either on yourself or on your clothing either courage, strength or equality. INVITE ALL YOUR GIRL FRIENDS!
This is to raise awareness about how women should be respected and be treated equally. We are not just objects to be decorated and commanded. We have brilliant minds, creative spirits and able bodies. Also because every girl out there is beautiful just the way she is. This day is also the International Day of Eradication of Violence Against Women.

This is for my MDG project.

I don't understand how this is doing anything. It's not an action. It simply takes most girls out of their comfort zone. So what if they wear make up?! That's their choice and the way they doll themselves up makes them an individual. I don't wear makeup at all myself, but that's just the way I roll.
There are many other things that women can do to show their power, such as rally or support each other. In fact feminine instinct causes us to support each other, so why isn't it happening?
And I'm all for women's rights and eradication of violence against women, and don't get me wrong, I know it happens. I just sometimes don't realize how blatently some people ignore the same issues affecting men now a days too.

Go on, change the world, save the lives of women. I'm right behind you, and all for my sisters of the world. Just don't forget the other side of the coin is starting to see the same cruelty and injustice against them.
For every act you do against objectification of women, remind a man that he's not the total control freak we play all men up to be. As much as you remind yourself and you sisters that they're worth something, remind a guy they're worth just as much too.
Someone's going to pull a "you give them and inch, and they take a mile" one aren't they?

October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

Just wanted to wish you all a very spook-tastic Halloween! Here's my halloween costume:

Have an amazing time out there, but stay safe! :)

Happy Halloween!
Amanda Out.

October 28, 2010

Star Trek with hot guys

Ah... Spock. I love thee. I have to say I approve of filling a generally nerdy movie full of highly attractive men. And much to most of our displeasures, Spock gets the girl instead of Kirk, which makes us all sad because we all secretly want Mr. Pointy Ears.

Sigh. But I suppose I can't have everything I want (although sometimes I wish I just got something) and I have little regret settling to wicked 17 year old Russian guy (I really don't remember his name...) for his sheer attractiveness and awesomeness. And Karlene wants Scotty over Russian guy (wait... his name was Khercof or something like that...) so it all works out wonderfully.

OH! I was telling Kyle earlier about how I completely approve of them filling the movie with hot guys, but then he asked if I even found old Spock attractive. My answer? God dammit man, it's Spock! Who cares what he looks like, his awesomeness just... just... ah...

Damn... so we're having this debate over who wins now... Kirk or Picard... which I really think is a battle between the awesome of Spock and Data (ah Spock, yes I'm biased) and not so much their respective captains.

Anyways, the damn was for the fact that I lost... I voted Kirk in favour of Spock, and Jess picked Picard (I'm assuming for Data). Oh... she says it's for Picard's epic awesomeness and his bad ass voice... but anyways...

The Librarian picked Kirk too (ftw!!!) but I was completely just trumped by Mr. Delodder's choice of Picard, which Delodder's choice trumping all opinions. Jess says he's supreme overloard, he is pretty epic I must admit.

So we're completely distracted by Star Trek videos on the internet now... so I'm going to have to leave you all with that obscure review of an epic remake.

Spock, I love you too!
Amanda Out.

October 27, 2010

The Inside Ride

I will not neglect. I will not neglect. I will not neglect.

Anyways... yeah.

Today I wanted to tell you about an epic event I participated in last night called The Inside Ride. What it is is an event where teams bike on a stationary bike for five minutes each, with the goal of biking across Canada with the total of kilometers of all participants.

It was way a lot of fun and we raised $30 000 all together!!! Incredible event. Our team's name was THE NERD BRIGADE!! I brought in my light sabers and everything. Here's a picture:

There's me, Erika, Jared, and Kyle. XD Livi's missing... she's off somewhere... I might post a better picture once they're up on good old facebook.

Anyways the point of the event is to raise money for kids with cancer. There's a kid who used to go to our school who has cancer, so we're supporting them. I didn't know him. So what did I do it for? Because every kid deserves to grow up to be and inspiration to others. :)

Check out the Inside Ride website for more information on hosting your own Inside Ride event. ^^