In trying times when it’s not always possible to focus on my art – it was a joyful moment to receive a Merit Award by Pleasanton Art League Members’ Show judge Paul Kratter for my photograph, “Morning Revival”.
There were several other participants in the show and the full gallery can be viewed online on the Pleasanton Art League website.
Congratulations to all the winners especially “Four Seasons” theme winner Chandana Srinath for “RUTHU-Life Cycle In Seasons”!
A Chair to Remember – The journey of an Adirondack Chair as part of a Temporary Public Art Program by the City of Dublin, California https://dublin.ca.gov/. The chair named “Of Poppies and Pollinators” was designed by Vanessa Thomas. Local Artist Teresa Yue assisted with the painting and assembly process.
The design for this Chair is inspired by the flora in Dublin with the added theme of protecting pollinators vital to our planet’s well-being.
This chair design raises awareness of the important work of bees, butterflies, moths, hummingbirds and others.
The problem of declining populations of native pollinators is complex, and there are multiple factors at work. But population decline can be largely be attributed to habitat loss, diseases and parasites, pollution and pesticide use.
The home gardener can help support native pollinators by creating pollinator-friendly landscapes and gardens.
A total of 20 Chairs were created by local artists and are up for auction via the City of Dublin website until September 2020.
Images used in this design have all been photographed in the Dublin area by Vanessa Thomas and include:
Image 1: Wisteria from Emerald Glen Park
Wisteria in Emerald Glen Park, Dublin, California
Image 2: California Poppies in the Meadow in Scarlett Drive
A pair of Californian wild Poppies
Image 3: Baby Blue Eyes wildflowers photographed in Fallon Sports Park
It’s been great to connect to fellow artists during shelter-in-place and some of us shared our thoughts with the Pleasanton Art League.
Our vulnerability has been highlighted in no uncertain terms in the current pandemic and rapid and complex changes have placed us in extraordinarily stressful times. Yet in the midst of it I am recalling quotes that have inspired and motivated me and I hope that by sharing them they can lighten your load a bit as well.
Pink Spring Blossoms in our neighborhood
Quote 1: The first was shared by my artist friend, Sawsan, who was making some jewelry and found an inscription on a piece of metal which read: “Every problem has a gift for you in its hands.” (Richard Bach) When I set aside my anxiety and looked for a gift in this unprecedented situation I came to realize that there were indeed gifts – closeness of family that I don’t usually get to enjoy, stepping off the hamster- wheel of meetings and events and finding quiet spaces to connect with my passions of writing and floral photography.
To read further please visit the Pleasanton Art League website and click here.
Passion for the things we love can take us many places. My love of flowers led me to photography which has taken me on journey of wonder and discovery and recently led me to the stage at TEDx Emerald Glen Park.
Butterflies in the Poppies:
My passions for storytelling, community and all things floral collided in a blissful moment that urged me to encourage others to follow the paths where they seek to make a difference.
It’s not for everyone but it might just be for you.
PS: Flowers at the TEDx Event:
Amazing that it included a pincushion bloom from the Western Cape in South Africa! Stocks symbolize a happy life and contented existence. Orange roses represent enthusiasm, passion and gratitude. The Feverfew daisy-like flowers are a medicinal plant for treating headaches so this is a perfect TEDx bouquet!
You never know where a new path will lead until you take the first step.
This blog started when I began my journey with a compact camera and started capturing flowers wherever I went. Just for the sheer love of them.
Now I just started a blog featuring my floral photography printed on tote bags. It’s called L’art du Tote simply because French makes everything sound exquisite!
My love of flowers started early and before I started using a camera I used to draw them. The school and university projects I submitted had title pages decorated with leaves and blooms even in Biochemistry class!
That is now many moons ago but I remember those days so clearly and with great fondness. Now my floral images are available for purchase on Pixels.com
It appears that people enjoy seeing uplifting positive images that bring joy to their day and a smile to their faces. I love that my art does that for them because that in turn brings me joy!
Now I can carry my art with me and spread the joy! Others have been sharing their joy with me too and I have received photos of my bags in America, Spain and South Africa too! It is indeed a sweet twist on an unexpected journey that began because flowers make my soul sing.
Wishing all my followers who have kept me motivated a joyful February! I hope you find what you love and love what you do!
The wonders I see and experience are a catalyst for creating and sharing.
I make art because the alternative is not an option.
Quote 1: “When passion fuels your destiny, joy will appear!” ~Vanessa Lee Thomas
My morning ritual usually includes reading the latest blog post by Seth Godin. It’s a way to kick my brain into gear and give me food for thought.
His recent post, What is your art? really resonated with me. I produce my art because I want to share something beautiful with the world and because I love it!
I am so grateful to all those who tell me that my art makes them smile and brightens their day. That they think of me when they see flowers. It warms my soul.
Quote 2: “Little deeds are like little seeds, they can grow to flowers or to weeds” ~Daniel D Palmer
Quote 3: “If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly, our lives would change” ~ Buddha
Quote 4: ” Your soul can see the beauty that surrounds you, embrace it!” ~Vanessa Lee Thomas
While watching the news this morning there was a report about a weight-lifting Mum showing off her six pack and causing a firestorm. She did it by posting a photo with a caption on Instagram. It offended some and got support from others. It also made me think about a beautiful and thought-provoking song Try by Colbie Caillat.
To me the interesting thing about this story – it all happened because of a photograph.
Images tell a story like nothing else can. It’s why photography is fascinating and captivating.
I recently posted a floral photograph on my Facebook page. It was not an image I had thought much of but it got a significant response from my friends. We don’t always know what resonates with people in the art we produce but it’s great to know when a connection has been made.
The conversation with my relocation adviser was about fifteen minutes in when we started talking about my LinkedIn profile summary. She took one look at it and said “You will have to remove the bit about the floral photography, recruiters don’t like flakey”.
Floral photography is my passion. Nothing ignites my soul like capturing the essence of a bloom in all it’s splendour. To have my art judged and demoted at a glance hurt.
Understandably the conversation rapidly deteriorated after that. If being passionate about floral photography made me flakey then so be it!
I would be a flakey artsy generalist instead of a boxed in, easily defined, scientific writer. If a recruiter didn’t like that I was flakey then they didn’t have work that would fuel my creative fire so that was no loss anyway.
I maintain that the world needs flakey! The world needs our authentic creative selves connecting with our passions to drive us into new realms of accomplishment.
You define who you are and you set the boundaries. Not conforming to expectations is not a bad thing. Sterilising the flakey is not a solution.
So be brave and be flakey! Live your passion and leave a legacy. I know I will.
So here’s another piece of my art (you fan find more on FineArtAmerica):