Sunday, December 04, 2011


"Life is too short and this lifetime in particular is too valuable for you to spend it doing things that don’t engage your passion and that block your heart energy from flowing into the world."

This was part of my horoscope for the week, but really, it should be an ongoing reminder for all of us at all times. This time of the year is a reminder for me to do just that.. to do what I love doing and to share my passions. A time to open the heart even wider to share.. to give to others.

We live in such an affluent area that sometimes we need a reminder that it's not all like this.

Yesterday, John and I spent part of the day at a Fair Trade Festival where we met with people who are sharing their passions in other countries as well as our own to help create a better world. This world includes clean water and food, an education and medicine... things we tend to take for granted here. These are people who are making a difference traveling to some of the poorest areas, sacrificing the comforts we expect here at home.

It was a heart opening experience to be surrounded by a room filled with these giving people.

Here at home, I can follow the same path. The path of sharing - giving -of myself, my work, my passions.

Key here is to do what you love to do and then pass the love and light of it on to others. Give your gifts to the world.

When you photograph a beautiful sight, paint your visions, create in clay, write your story... and share that, you pass along your gift.

And I thank you.

May your heart always be open.


Saturday, November 19, 2011

Sending out love

"Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow."-- Melody Beattie

When life comes at us from all angles, hitting us with demands from this direction and that, we have a choice. We can ride the edge of the wheel and become part of that turmoil and chaos, or we can move towards the center and breathe into our own stillness - our heart center.

From there, we can know our next step. We then can move from the still point, the calm center. This is what mandala does for me. It brings me to that still point, quiet, peaceful, my heart center, and I make a choice from there.

My response, rather than reaction, comes from the question of "what will help me to grow?.. what best serves my higher Self?"

I move from the self-centered reaction of "what about me!?" to how can I be of service to you, a compassionate and more whole response. I move from the centered Self, and carry my gifts, my purpose out into the world.

It is a constant movement - inside to outside- back and forth- a balance of give and take.

I would like to take away your pain and give you joy. I would like to come from a point of compassion and gratitude all the time, but it is a journey. One that has me coming and going.

How joyous it is when this flow comes between us, sharing the journey of give and take. How wonderful when we are in balance.

When there are obstacles and turmoil, I move back inside.. into the center of mandala, heart center, and find the deep gratitude that awaits there for me... So much kindness. So much love that I can focus on... and then the rest disappears.


Sunday, November 13, 2011

Center of it all...

Opening up.


When open,

what do you find in the center of it all..


Follow it's direction.

No matter which way you turn,

it is there.

One needs to just open up

to find it.

It is in the center of everything.


I found this quote on the internet today and it fits with my feeling today about this mandala:

We have a treasure within us that we will never lose, but we will not find it by searching outside. We have to look within.
– Amma

Saturday, November 12, 2011


Finally, getting back to some blogging and more importantly, to mandala making. Since the show, my priorities seemed to have been misplaced or maybe I just needed to venture into other areas.

What I notice is I get cranky when I don't create. Giving is good, but there needs to be a balance that I more often than not tend to forget.. or maybe it's just saying that "no" word that is hard to do. I tried sneaking in some moments and created some cards for a show that's coming up, but it wasn't exactly the same, but even that went by the wayside.

I don't find the same calmness that comes with mandalas. They are more centering. Like the breath, the more focused I become on them, the calmer I become. As I become calm, I get more clear on what I need for myself and for others.

Each new moon I notice that the seeds I plant always have to do with this.. giving myself the time to do art.

Along with this, I found a book, "How Yoga Works"... and more messages of the same, planting seeds. Each thought is another seed. Whether positive or negative, loving or hurtful, it is a seed we plant and eventually reap the results. Plant positive and loving seeds and see the benefits.

If I am cranky and irritable and speak to others in an unkind, critical voice, I am sure to see that return back to me. That is not what I wish... so keeping this in mind, it is better for me and for you and for the betterment of mankind if I do my art.

So, if you see me on the street, getting short with you or someone else.. just pat me on the back and say," go home and make mandalas".

Thank you for your kindness :-)

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Wainwright Sunset

Our evening ended with this beautiful sight.

Our reception was great fun. Thank you to all those who came.
The exhibit stays up until Oct. 21.
New moon yesterday (Tues.) comes at a time that I set new goals.
I love making mandalas, but I also love creating assemblages, so I am on the lookout for a new space to exhibit 3 dimensional pieces in the area...
Today, I get to paint on a wall in the library. Children's section.
Working Big.
It balances out from doing all those small and detailed mandalas.
Time to use those large muscles :-)
Moving towards newness.
What's new with you ?

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Heal thyself

Feeling more emotional than usual.. a bit raw. Getting ready for the show got me into doing the practical stuff like framing, creating the cards and then preparing for a hurricane.
Besides that, I was surrounded by loss. A friend, my mom lost a friend, actually 2, and a dear friend of mine lost his son. On top of that I watched and learned of devasting effects from the hurricane in the places that are dear to us in upstate NY.
Yesterday I knew I needed to pull myself out of a funk. My body lagged with little energy due to emotional eating.. junk food.
It hit me.. take your own advice! go create a mandala. I realized that's what was lacking.. the simple act of creating those small gems of quieting the mind.. a way to bring out that inner light that was dimming in all the outside sorrow coming at me. ART HEALS!
Compassion is good, but it needs movement. I realize movement is key and me "not in motion" stays that way and you do NOT want to be around me when I'm like that.
Unstructured time, lack of self-dicipline, unmotivated and stuck make for one very grouchy Doreen.
The indecisive mind enters.. and immobilizaton sets in.
aaaaaaaahhhh. Pull me out!!!
and I did. I started with morning pages to dump.. get it out of the system and then I created a mandala.
I need this.
I cannot not do this - this act of creating.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

She's coming.....

Working on a mandala painting 24x24 for the exhibit coming up at the Wainwright House
in Sept. Irene is coming this way and I've moved a lot of my art supplies into the dinning room. Have my flashlights ready. Art is such a wonderful way to be absorbed into something positive. I'll let you know how that all turns out. Most of the worst part will be overnight and tomorrow morning. Wishing everyone on the east coast the best.
I've been pretty busy and haven't been blogging all that much anyway, but if the power goes... well, who knows when.
Be well.
Do art.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Re Centering

In the labrynth at the Wainwright House where we will be having our exhibit. This beautiful spiritual place is on the water... very peaceful. I took some time to work on centering myself and getting back into my own art for a while.
Another way to get centered is painting a mandala.
Life gets very messy while we focus on our art..

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Gratitude Wheel

I shifted gears this week. For 6 weeks I work at camp as the art specialist. I love working with the kids creating for the most part, but not fond of the hot, sticky weather that I have to do this in. I work under a tent of blue and orange stripes which creates confusion as to the color of things and it absorbs the heat! Along with that, add bugs, bees and unorganized materials and you'll understand why I tried this experiment this week.
Each morning on the way to work, I said "thank you" to everything good that popped up in my mind.. everything from clear pathways to beautiful landscaped houses I passed to green lights and the people who paved the road... Many things came to mind...and so I started out each day with this grateful state of mind.. and even through all kinds of challenges, I stayed pretty calm.
I was able to lighten up!
So, for the next 5 weeks, my intention is to be thankful those things that I love and am grateful for. It's a powerful prayer.
Coming home was much more challenging.. .. .. ..
As these wheels of life turn, each day brings an opportunity to try again :-)

Friday, July 01, 2011

Mandala Time

I did some mandalas while away. They're in a small watercolor journal and are done with marker and glitter gel pens which are spread with a waterbrush. I scanned them, so they don't show the glittered effect so much.

This first one is Solstice Abundance: Birth of Summer and all it's abundant blessings.

Each new day brings new blessings while others are revisited... I count them, but lose count there are so many and I am grateful. It was a gorgeous week listening to bird song, river tumbling over stone. Comfortable to sit.. and be still.

Listen to my own inner self.

It is a creative universe.. a Universe filled with Creativity.. and I am filled with it as are you.
There is no end to it.

Each direction, no matter which way we turn, it is there for us to reap it's rewards, this abundance that is there for us.. we just need to open our eyes.

Then open our heart

and let it in.

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Time out...

Finally getting back to mandalas again. It had been a while and I feel the difference when I don't take the time for myself.. some quiet introspective time.. my form of meditation.

I listen to the messages.

Listen to what comes up.. how mandalas speaks to me.

This one had a message of "go further" - move beyond the normal boundaries.. stretch your boundaries! I keep adding on..

As in life, I keep adding on.

How much further can I take any project, and how much is too much?


surrounded by so much beauty

supportive people

so much love

If we take a look around, we can see how much we can be thankful for.

Switch gears.

Change the channel.

Turn the dial.

If there is something in our world we do not like, take offense to or just find to be too negative, how often do we sit with it anyway.

Mull in it's muddy murky waters until we become just as negative.

Switch gears.

Change the channel.

Dwell in a different possibility..

Find something that uplifts you

and moves you into that place

of peace

and beauty

and love.

Most of the times it just involves getting up off our butt and take a walk,

preferably with a camera..

turn on the macro setting

and find that true beauty hidden in nature's amazing work.

Even a bug becomes magnificent in it's irredescent spendor.

Most of the time, we just need to take a time out

and do something kind for ourselves.



I figured I'd post what I made... curious as to who got what :-)

Thursday, May 26, 2011

How to paint..

" Every artist dips his brush in his own soul, and paints his own nature into his pictures"

Henry Ward Beecher

"I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn't say any other way-

things I had no words for"
Georgia O'Keeffe

"Painting is easy when you don't know how, but very difficult when you do."

Edgar Degas

"What art offers is space- a certain breathing room for the spirit"
John Updike

"Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart"
William Wordsworth

" Every Child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up."

~Pablo Picasso

"It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge"
~Alber Einstein


Thursday, April 28, 2011

Carry the seeds

When I begin a mandala, I have no real intention of what it will be about. The intentions I do have are to bring myself to a calm and centered state.. sometimes they are used as a form of prayer.. for healing..
images appear as I work with this.. symbols tend to repeat themselves for a while. Many times the cross appears, flowers, hearts, leaves and seeds lately.
Some times an image appears with dual purpose.. is it a bud or a seed.. a fish or a flower.. a birds beak or another seed.. it appears.. and I listen.
I would say my "aha" moments come about 3/4 of the way through. These are messages to myself, small and large epiphanies.
I had been thinking on a discussion of creativity and spirituality. I began thinking how through art I am able to get in touch with my spirit. This is my voice, my creativity. They, my artwork, are reflective of my spirit.
But if I keep it to myself, it is only half of my journey towards my creative spiritual growth. It has to be shared. The light needs to come out from under the bushel, the bud needing to blossom.
That is what the mandala spoke to me about.. carry that seed out into the world. Out of the internal to the external. If we do not bring our gifts out into the world, what is the point? If we have a voice, what purpose if it is not heard?
The seed cracks open, the blossom appears and new seeds are developed to be carried away out into wherever they need to go. Dive into these waters and do not be afraid.. dive deeper into your inner knowing and come to the surface with delight... share that.
Plant your seed, and watch it grow.. and then muliply into a garden of delight.. Those seeds may be carried beyond your wildest expectations :-)

Saturday, April 09, 2011


The show is hung.. taxes done... the stress of the week has come to a slight calm.. breathing room. A day to take the camera out and take a deep look at the renewal of life.. Spring.
This tree is in the park at the beach in Rye... pretty cool. Orchids I treated myself to. It is a reminder to look at the beauty around me. Thank you.

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Sharing art

The past year has been a teaching one.. teaching others? no..Rather being taught by them.. the young children in art class. I learn from them the powers of possibility.. focus.. attention to detail.. and the utter delight in piling on glittery substances. They teach me how to sparkle in life.. Their smiles sparkle with unconditional love. How lucky I am to have this in my life. How deeply grateful I am to have the opportunity to be with them and share their experiences of creating art. Such a power art has. I can literally heal us. As we heal, we can heal that which surrounds us.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

healing energy

As I was creating this mandala, I thought of Rauchen, my son's dog. Jessi mentioned he's having a problem with his ear. Sweet Rauchen.. I noticed ears appearing and went with the full attention of her.. my prayer for her healing inserted into this mandala as I was drawing and coloring.

Friday, March 25, 2011

going further

Inspired by some other intricate mandalas, I kept adding to this one. I guess, one can continue on and on until the mandala or anything for that matter is filled to the brim!
I pondered that. As I worked on this and the story of it unfolded, I saw the leaf holding a bowl. Holding it up in gratitude. It was the feeling of abundance, the dance of gratefulness for all that life holds for us...
and then this little demon crept in.. he is at the bottom. His teeth were white at the time. I didn't want him there and thinking the pink would alter him and it did somewhat.. but now I know he is there.. if I look. I can always shift my attention to the gratefulness of a full cup too.
I can do this at anytime.. just like in life.
Toying with my thoughts on this today as I have an appointment to have a back tooth, which broke, pulled today.
My mouth feels crowded. I never had any wisdom teeth pulled and one tooth even turned to make room. One front tooth is beginning to overlap.. Crowded mouth.
Crowded life.
I'm living a full life at the moment and it feels crowded.
A dream last night, remembered this morning was me cooking on a very large grill. The grill was full of stuff and I tried to find some room for the small pieces of chicken I had cut up, squeezing them in between things... containers of vegetables, other indistinguishable foods that were kind of gloppy in a metal bowl... It was a very large grill too, like a very large picnic table that I had to walk around..
Anyway, back to the idea of going further on something.. taking it one step further...
and I thought how much is too much.. like life.. how much can we take on before we say "no thank you".
Art reflecting life. Mandala reflecting mine. Do I want to keep adding, or work to simplify. You can guess where I am going with this.
If I do not take that one step, pushing the envelope, how will I know how far I can go.. how will I know if I don't take this risk and learn what I need to learn.
I altered this a bit, because my going too far in the center didn't appeal to me, so I added some glitter.
Simplify. De clutter. Release rather than add...
thanks for the lesson mandala :-)

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Spread Love

It's so easy to get caught up in fear, worry, anxiety. Life comes at us pretty strong at times and overwhelms us with so much we feel our heads spin with so many thoughts in so many directions.. which way to turn... spinning.. spinning..
Turn off the outside world for a bit.. go into your space of quiet.. and listen.
Remember, it is love and not fear that we want to project.. and without knowing the whys of everything... we trust in the Higher purpose of life. We are here and while here, we need to uplift!!!
Close your eyes, send out images of love, joyfullness, peace. See - visualize people smiling- the world wrapped in healing light.. sense joyfullness and wonder.
Uplift the world.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Share your light

What purpose does it serve if we have something and cannot or will not be open to sharing it.
Joy is magnified when we view a gorgeous sunset, break bread or share our gifts with another. Our gifts are doubled as we share them with another.
What purpose does it serve to bury your light, hidden under that bushel. We all have a special light that needs to shine, to help carry someone to greater sight.. insight.
Our being on the planet is reason enough to share it... to help others.. Maybe we are the holders of that light while another climbs out of a darkness.
What about being the one who receives the light... how open can we be to say yes to it.. allowing another one to be the barer of that light and be carried through to our own brilliance.
Deep gratitude goes to those who have given me the inspiration to shine my own light.. Thank you to those of you who have given praise and complements to lift me up, inspiring words, giving me confidence to go out and shine my light.
Thank someone today that has helped you to see the light.. whether a candle flame or bonfire... it has helped you.. me.. to walk along this path. We cannot shut our eyes or hide in the dark any longer but rather reach out to someone who needs a touch of lightness.
Whether you carry this light or someone else does, both receive the benefits.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

aaahh, yes. you understand me :-)

I saw this wonderful post first on my friend Chaska's website and went to read it here at
this blog. Living Story - understanding creative people.
It was one of those moments when someone writes about you and you say.. yes, that's me.. and someone finally gets it! Someone understands.. most creative types do understand other creative types.. but let's face it.. sometimes we question our own sanity with this.
But when you read it in black and white and read someone define your behavior.. it has to bring a smile to your face and relax into that feeling.. yes.
So, what is it that I wish for you .. you creative types out there.. that you are true to you higher self and that creative genius that lives inside of you...

Saturday, January 29, 2011

what carries you?

Our lives being a journey
gave rise to the thought of what carries me through the day.
Most days I move along at a steady pace
rituals played out.
Deep waters make me more conscious of life
and it brings me to realize how it is love that carries me through the day.
Faith plays a part
Without it
I would not trust the boat that carries me over to the other side
of fear and uncertainty.
I continue to move towards that which I love to do
rather than do the expected responsible thing-
the mature adult thing
the money thing that is constantly being slammed at you
by way of media.
It is the child within me
the idea of trying something new
that carries me
to a shore of possibility.
But ultimately it is because
I love you

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Buried Seeds

Buried seeds
keeping warm deep in the earth
beneath this blanket of snow
One day you will emerge
move towards the light
You will begin again
another round
another birthday.
The wheel of life turning round and round
from seed to blossom to fruit and back to the earth again
because you will rise again
to be in your glory
dancing your feverish dance
with all of life
forgetting where you came from

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Wild Thing

While I was creating this mandala, "passion" entered my thoughts. I've been thinking a lot about following my passions. Art is one of my greatest.. there are other which I won't get into right now, but for the last couple of months, I've been doing mandalas as a daily meditation.
I've become very passionate about doing them... sometimes avoiding doing other things.. but what the heck.
But the language of the mandala shifted and spoke of being wild, taking a risk... that side of you that wants to be a "wild thing"... a bit rebellious, wanting to move outside the box.. s t r e t c h into something new.. go exploring again.
What is calling you?
What is it you'd like to try?
Where can you stretch yourself... and maybe take a walk on the wild side :-)
Maybe I'm just getting cabin fever!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

compass of love

Finding your true north..
that which you love to do, that which you are passionate about.
Your heart becomes the compass showing you the direction,
the path upon which you should be walking.
Many times I have questioned my purpose,
but what I have learned is that life will show you if you are willing to listen,
listen to your heart
that is.
Here is where the answers lie.
Whatever you find yourself doing
over again.
Whatever brings a smile, make you feel like singing,
whatever brings joy
whatever makes time
That's it.

Friday, January 21, 2011


As I was working on this mandala, the word "transition" kept popping up in my mind. Here's where I say that the mandala speaks to me. It begins the conversation within the process, getting stronger towards the end and most often it speaks more clearly at it's completion.
About halfway, it had a strong energy of summer.. the energy of vibrant color wanting to be felt, turning away from the gray, black and white... ok, mostly white - of this winter.
But transitions are about just that, the moving from dark to light, and then from light back to dark... from warm to cool, business to stillness.
Moving from inside myself to outside in the world.. these are small transitions of each day.
Moving from one sign to another.. moon, sun.. outer planets.. these take longer and even longer..
Each transition comes with ease or difficulty, depending on how we are, what we are feeling.
How well do you transition from one activity to another?
Watch children. This conversation was held during our class last night, discussing our different experiences with children during transitioning and I think that is what must have been sitting deep inside while I was completing this. I think Mandala wanted to discuss it a little more with me :-)
When I am totally engrossed in a project, I do not want to stop to do something else.
I want to sit with what I am doing.. focused... totally immersed in what I am doing as if there were nothing else in the world. Being in the now.
But "now" moves forward and we begin transitioning into another activity. Maybe some responsibility that MUST be done.. like shoveling your car out or doing a load of wash..
But ooh so sweet are the times when we can linger on and on, taking it slow, transitioning slowly... flowing well from moment to moment. Such bliss.
I was taken with an event I saw on the local news station - a man with a rare cancer was turned down by the insurance company, but channel 12 news interceded on his behalf, calling the insurance co. on it... and they took another look at it and decided to cover his treatments.
This happened as the sun moved into the humanitarian sign of Aquarius.. cool, I thought and Kudos to you channel 12 news!
I hope all your transitions today go smoothly..

Friday, January 14, 2011

New Journal


Heart Light
I bought a new journal from a local art store that has beautiful handmade paper. The mandalas are cropped, so you don't see the ragged edges. This caused me to take a break from markers and go back to watercolors.. H2o's. Unfortunately, you cannot see the glimmer these colors have. They are one of my favorite mediums to use.
I treated myself to 2 new journals, both having watercolor paper... both delicious to use.
Food and Art.. two things I love that nourish me!
I've been "hungry" lately. For some reason, I am looking for some food to satisfy and it ended up I was eating too much junk food... then I realized, it's not the food but the art that would satisfy this time. With a cup of tea (Relax from Trader Joe's) I went into my art room and painted.. and that does the trick every time.
Trying to lose weight? go pick up a brush.. or marker or whatever tool you prefer :-)
You are changing your focus. You resolve the emotional eating that does us in every time... and instead become centered on creating and your own inner self and just maybe will uncover some issue that had been lurking deep inside.. bringing it up to the surface and making it conscious.
Once it is brought to Light... then we can deal with it.
"Enlightenment is not about imagining figures of light, but of making the darkness conscious" Jung wrote that and I get it.. and doing art, especially creating mandalas, does that for me.. it brings things to light and if we bring the light to something "dark" it's there for us to see.
I see you now.
You are out in the open.
Now I can deal with you....
and be open
to some new possibilities...

Saturday, January 08, 2011

what guides you?

I created 2 mandalas while waiting yesterday. I have a series of "waiting room" mandalas :-). I bring a book and pens, markers, journal, blank cards...
Because of the snow, I stayed at the hospital while John had his paracentisis (sp?) procedure. I usually drop him off and go do what I have to do for a few hours and then go back to pick him up when I get the call... but yesterday with the snow coming down like it did, I stayed.. no way was I going to make that trip twice!
I was concerned about the roads, but the Universe was good and they were just wet while everything else was covered.. COVERED.. in a blanket of heavy snow. It was beautiful to see and I thought, that too was a gift.. a gift of beauty.
I sat in the cafeteria for a while making mandalas and getting lost in time.. no time.. while creating them. I believe they bring me to a place of calm and healing and while I'm in that mode, I feel that healing energy go out to every one there besides my husband.
Remarks on how well he is looking from his doctor, a smooth "tap" all verify this for me. If I can be calm and loving and send out this energy, it can only be good for others as well.
WE are energy.
If we are filled with love, that energy must go out into the world too. If we are joyful, notice how much joy we see out in the world.
If we do what brings us joy... then we are living our truth, walking our path.. it is a constant reminder to do just that. Do what brings us joy.. let it be our guide.
Thank you Universe for my eyes to see.

Monday, January 03, 2011

Open arms

This is the last mandala of 2010. I made it with the intention of giving it to a friend to say thanks...
I called it open arms, because of those golden extenions and the blue wavey lines reaching out. Sometimes I feel as if I was to wrap my arms around it all.. all of my friends, all of life. I want to give it a big hug.. to hold on to it, encapsulate it all inside of me.. to hold on... to hold on.. but it is all there and no need to hold on to it, because it is all right there.. right here.. all a part of the whole and there's no need to hold on.
Release is something I am keeping consciously aware of this year. I want to let go of stuff, material stuff as well as emotional stuff that does not serve me well. I want to let go of stressful emotions, the worries, the fears that prove to do nothing but cause dis-ease.
I want to let go... not hold on.
If my arms are open, I can not hold on and I can let go.. no grasping and there's no need for it because it's all right here.
In my heart.
I breathe it all in.. hold ... and let it out.. letting go with a soft sigh.