Artist Date Forster

We had a gorgeous afternoon dancing Salsa at Forster and watching the waves from the deck. This is the view we had over the beach pool. I grew up on Sydney's northern beaches and we were so lucky as kids, to have fabulous ocean pools like this one to swim in. There is a move on in Port Macquarie to persuade the council to build us one here. If you are in favour, there is a petition going around, do sign it if you get the chance.

After a fabulous few dancey hours, I wandered along the beach and was delighted to discover some street art on the wall.

Click here to find out about Salsa in Forster or Port Macquarie

Written on the Wall

Life is an artist date in Paris... simply walking along the streets fills your spirit. You never know if you are going to come across a wonderful building, an decades old book shop with mystical invitations ooozing from it, or artworks... big sigh...

It is so much fun to be wandering along and to see the Eiffel Tower peeking out from the distance. This year we visited Paris for a month. We adored it and are hoping to go again next year to continue on our artist dates over there. In the mean time...

If you haven't been already, I hope one day you get to walk the street beside The Seine, and take it all in.

If you do, stop at Pont Alexandre for a treat at the Bistro, tell them we said hi. Better still, we'll meet you there for coffee.

Day of the Dead - Día de Muertos

"Day of the Dead (Spanish: Día de Muertos) is a Mexican holiday celebrated throughout Mexico, in particular the Central and South regions, and by people of Mexican ancestry living in other places, especially the United States. It is acknowledged internationally in many other cultures. The multi-day holiday focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died, and help support their spiritual journey. In 2008 the tradition was inscribed in the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO." Wikipedia

Share Your Voice

There have been many posts this week on social media about the presidential election in the USA. One artist friend invited other artists to share their work with an uplifting quote. In case you didn't see that invitation, here is another one - you are invited to join in too.

Weren't these women brave? Have you ever stood for something you believed in? I wish we could sit and have a cup of tea together, I want to ask you.. - what was it - what did you say - how did it feel - were you heard? Tell me more.

Are you willing to share your inspiration and creativity? How would you like our beautiful world to be? What do you see as a future for us all? How can we co-create this vision?

The Art of Travel

For the last few weeks, hubby and I have been busily wandering the streets of Paris, the halls of The Louvre, Versailles and many other wonderful places in France. We were offered a home in Paris to stay in for the month of August, and grabbed the opportunity when it arose.

As we wandered from The Metro station up to The Eiffel Tower, we were delighted to see this little friendly face from home, looming over us on a building.

It was the middle of summer when we arrived, and thankfully Paris wasn't yet in the grip of the heatwave that would finally arrive at the end of our trip.

We made our way to the Eiffel Tower, and found these gorgeous gardens and a rather beautiful merry-go-round, at the base of the tower.

Everything seems beautiful in Paris, from the Metro Signs to the street lamps or just wandering along the sidewalk.

On to The Louvre...

Image above courtesy of Wikipedia By Alvesgaspar click on image to enlarge

Photo above: the base of the pyramid at The Louvre Photo courtesy of The Louvre Website.

We found our way into The Louvre from The Metro station. The metro is a great way to make your way to any of the wonderful sights of Paris. The entrance via the metro takes you underneath the main building and you will find yourself surfacing under the pyramid.

Contrary to many of the warnings we had about large queues to enter The Louvre, the ticket counters underneath, had very few people lining up and those that were there moved quickly. There are quite a lot of automated ticket counters with well marked line barriers, so no pushing in to be experienced.

Sadly this beautiful fresco by Botticelli hasn't photographed all that well, the colours were stunning and the artwork one of my favourites from The Louvre. To see more of these frescos visit The Louvre - click here.

Winged Victory was amazing, the size and presence of the sculpture hushed the crowds of people visiting.

We and hundreds of other viewers found our way to The Mona Lisa... hubby managed to find his way to the front of the viewing rail, I got this close ;). I loved the photo that I captured of this fellow artlover dressed in red, we had a similar smile - or was that just Mona Lisa's influence?

Coming in a close second for favourites were the sculptures. There wasn't enough time to 'ooo' and 'wwwooow' over them. Again, the skill of the sculptors and the way the details are captured are truly amazing.

If you've been I'm sure you'll understand what I mean. If you haven't been to see them, I so hope you get to go one day.

Just look at that detail, I wouldn't have been surprised to see that foot move! Then again ;)

I wonder what lucky lady once sat here? I didn't have time to read all the details, we were really pushing ourselves to see what we did, in the 7 hours we were there.

A piece created in the 1500's - it still looked as vibrant as if it had been created yesterday.

So many treasures - and so little time to see them all.

"La Joyeuse" The sword of Charlemagne is the only one known to have served as the coronation sword of the Kings of France. Visit the Louvre to find out more - click here.

The staircases that once Napoleon walked down, Louis the X1V

The Louvre has to be seen to be believed. Allow yourself many hours and days if you have the time to see just a little of what they have in the collection. It truly is awe inspiring.

Take some time out to nurture yourself

Have you had time for yourself lately? Life is often so busy, that we can find ourselves forgetting to nurture ourselves in small ways that give us a sense of simple abundance. Perhaps it is a lovely soak in a tub, for another person maybe it is buying some fresh flowers. Make a plan to do some pampering for yourself today or at the latest tomorrow. Write a time and put it in your diary, just as you commit to others, make a commitment to you. We are often waiting for that special one to do something for us, and wishing that someone would notice us. The truth is, we need to look after ourselves in the ways that we want that special other to.

If you are wanting to hear someone say 'I love you', look in the mirror and tell yourself that. If you want someone to bring you flowers, go and buy some. If you want someone to give you a hug, place one hand on your heart breathe slowly and bring kindness to yourself. If you are waiting for a little gift, go and buy yourself something special, that book you've been wanting for instance - it doesn't have to be expensive. When you start to pamper yourself, you start to create joy and you'll find that your spirits lift.

Rainbow Surf

It was a magical morning at Lighthouse Beach last Saturday. The light was touching the crests of the waves and creating rainbows. At times the red of the rainbow would touch the water and for a moment glimmer. The next moment purple seemed to take the center stage.

My dear little Panasonic & I have managed to capture a few of the rainbows, I hope you enjoy seeing these delightful moments.

I spent a couple of hours in awe of the beauty of the colour that the surfers were swimming in, touched by the colours and trailing rainbows behind them as they surfed. No wonder surfers love this activity, I was wanting to grab a board and go out paddling myself.

So many people were focussed on doing their morning walks, and seemed oblivious to nature's display. I wondered how many of them noticed the magical beauty, I hope a few.

(Click on the images to enlarge them.)

Spark your creativty... iPad Art

What sparks your ideas?

The Creative Ageing brochure I picked up on an artist date at The Glasshouse the day prior to the festival, promised to Spark ideas, Lead to innovative ways to 'Ageing Well', Inspire achievement and Excite the imagination. I noticed that an iPad art class was on the following day so I called the library and...

luckily there was a spot left for me. I quickly downloaded a couple of the required aps and went along to learn all about using my iPad to create art with. A little excited I love learning new things where art is concerned. Mic Rees ran our course, we all wanted the day to just keep on going and we were back again on day two to keep learning with him.

Show and tell... one of my first attempts at iPad Art.
'Art is like chocolate for the brain.' ~ Quote by Dr Gene Cohen

Headlights painted at night Lake Cathie NSW - Painting on iPad using Brushes painting app - by Mic Rees.

What to wear in Port Macquarie by Mic Rees. Visit Mic's Website: www.rees

But wait, there's more - another fun workshop with Wendy Stokes was held at the TAFE. We had a lovely time playing with charcoal and learning about mark making.

The mosaic wall at Port Macquarie TAFE

Wendy invited us to play with charcoal

...and to experiment with drawing. We had great fun.

The creative ageing week in Port Macquarie was great fun, and yes it did Spark Ideas, Inspire Achievment and Excite the Imagination.