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Articulation 7/28/04 - "Real Life" and NEW STUFF!
July 28, 2004
Hi ~

Hello! Here I am!!! :-)

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This is the first ARTICULATION sent out in two no, you haven't been missing any of our issues!

But if you'd like to check our back issues, you can find them at

"Real Life": A Mini-Article

First of all, I must take a moment to thank the entire Artella community for all the support, warmth, and love that you've given me since my Dad passed away three weeks ago. It has been such a strange time, with such a collage of emotions, and the strength of this community has gotten me through it. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

It has been especially moving for me to hear about the ways in which my Dad's last conscious words to me, "Don't hold back", have made a difference to you. Knowing that the essence of his spirit is sprinkled through so many ArtellaFolk is incredibly gratifying.

(If you missed the "Don't Hold Back" article, you can find it at this link.

To read some of my Dad's words about the meaning of poetry, go to the PassionPoetry newsletter archives.

Also, please enjoy his words and wisdom in a PDF file with the entire series of his "a philosophical riff" column, presented in each issue of Artella, found at this link.

It is a joy to share his work with you.

I haven't sent out Articulation in two weeks, and while part of the reason has been due to a heavy workload, there's also been the part of me that has come up empty-handed when I've thought about what to write in today's article.

I tell people in YOU * U to write what they, themselves, need to know, so I'll try my own advice and write about re-integrating back into "real life" after an intense experience.

As creative people, we long for opportunities when we can throw ourselves into the ecstasy of life. But when we are fortunate enough to have rich experiences (i.e. creative or spiritual retreats, intense surrenderings to the creative experience, the observation of human passages such as birth and death, and more) we DO have to come back into "real life".

The transition is tough to make, because these powerful experiences challenge our very definitions of what is "real life".

Here are a list of things that I've discovered to be helpful in my own transition back home, back to work. Perhaps there will be something here that will help you in a transition of your own. Whether it is coming home after a powerful vacation, or making the transition from ecstasy in your art studio to going to wash the dishes.

1. Find ways to keep the experience alive. Photographs, mementos, talismans can help serve as grounding reminders to the new things you Know.

2. Change your space around. This serves as a ritual to proclaim that you are walking into a new space in your life, with new wisdom in your pocket.

3. Select an activity that you can do instantly at moments when you feel lost in "real life". For me, this has been organizing and de-cluttering. When I have had that feeling of being in between two worlds, I have gotten my body moving to clear a space and it clears my mind as well.

4. Lean on friends in the way that feels most comfortable. Re-integration can ignite both reaching out and retreating in, and both are appropriate and necessary. Tell your friends how they can best help you -- they really do want to know!

5. Get plenty of rest. When we sleep, our minds can process things and sort them out in a way that can't happen when we are awake. I have needed more sleep than usual since I've returned home, and I'm giving it to myself. Whenever I get sleepy, I figure that my body must know what it's doing. Yours does, too!

6. Let it out. Even if you don't feel like opening up to loved ones, use your art to express your complicated feelings. Give yourself to write and make art that is purely for you, work that has the honor of helping you process your experience. Throw out expectations for what you create, and just allow it to be a tangible, hands-on conversation between you and the Universe.

7. Go slow. If your transition involves a massive To-Do List, take it step by step, piece by piece. As Deb (Artella's Creative Projects Manager) told me "It's not going to get done quicker if you're stressed about it." I've been doing so much delegating, restructuring and rearranging these days, that I'm more likely to follow a "NOT To-Do List" than a To-Do List!

8. Bask in gratitude. Whatever the powerful experience is, there is gratitude in knowing that you have been changed. Consider that we are all beautiful, artistically altered books, lined up on the shelves of existence, finding our true colors and embracing the ephemera in our alteration.

"Any transition serious enough to alter your definition of self will require not just small adjustments in your way of living and thinking but a full-on metamorphosis." -- Martha Beck

  • Are you living between two worlds? What are those worlds? What do you need to find yourself at home?
  • How can you keep the experience alive in your day-to-day surroundings?
  • Looking at the list of ideas above, which one seems the most impossible to integrate? Perhaps that is the one that needs the most attention.


It seems I'm constantly getting glimpses of the ways I can continue to connect with my Dad. This week's art-splash,
Double Mystery , is a small meditation on one experience.

You can find it at


These past few weeks have been busy, busy, busy with TONS of new additions and changes. Take a look!

1. Artella Magazine update We are caught up on mailing out issues of Artella 6, so if you are a new subscriber, your issue is either in your happy hands, or on its way! Due to my circumstances, Artella 7, "Theatre & Cinema: Beyond Make Believe" has been delayed until August. But I will tell you this: it's the BEST issue ever! Pre-order at the link above!

2. The best $3.00 you'll ever spend. Artella Members are enjoying more features than ever, with all kinds of new additions to the Members Parlor: new articles, new teleclasses, a monthly downloadable clip art collection, an "In the Studio" interview series, audio lectures every week, and much more...all for just $3.00 a month.

Perhaps most exciting is our first ever Members-Only "Christmas in July" Party, which takes place TOMORROW (Thursday) night. It's a chat room party where we'll play games and I'll be exhuberantly giving away freebies and gifties, left and right. It's not too late to participate...just sign up to get the URL to attend. Membership is only $3.00/month, paid monthly, and you can cancel absolutely any time. There's nothing to lose -- come join so you can come party...

3. New workshops and e-courses! If you take a look at our Workshops page, you'll see that there are lots of new opportunities! I'll highlight a few, here:
  • Launch, Lift, and Love Your Web Site, a FREE workshop on Web design the Artella way
  • The BusinessBlitz Intensive, a one-time only teleclass series in making your business splash, even if you have low resources
  • Collaging Your Creative Revolutions, a FREE teleclass recording, so you can have your own private workshop
  • A brand new SIX MONTH MEMBERSHIP format for Goalar Energy, our most popular course
  • ONE MORE SPACE left in the current YOU * U session
  • The announcement of the Fall session of The Wealthcare Program
  • NEW Project Development Coaching with yours truly
    ...and MORE
Check it all out right here!

4. New Artella eBookstore! We've opened a beautiful new eBookstore with all of Artella's fun and funky eBooks. Take a moment and come browse our books!

5.More fun stuff! If you explore the Artella PlayLand, you'll see lots of new additions! The Reading Room has a new section for Art Projects & Techniques, new articles, and some funky clip art to download. There are new games in the Game Room, and all kinds of other goodies tucked away in our nifty nooks. Come play!

6.Write poetry, win money! The deadline for our Quarterly Poetic Idol Competition is THIS FRIDAY at midnight EDT. Win up to $150, plus all kinds of great Artella prizes. We want your poetry - so send it to us! (and check out our new Poetry Gardens with all of Artella's past winners!

The most recent winners of our free Weekly Poetry Contest are...
  • First Place - Jo Ann Alderman Baker for "Cosmic Dust"
  • Second Place - Carolyn Byrd for "The Promise"
  • Third Place - Okwudili Paul Nwankwo for "Refuge of Sorrow"
  • Fourth Place - Sherrell Wigal for "Cardinal Singing"
You can read this group of winning poems right here


Our featured seller this week is Barbara Miller, whose awesome team provides editing, proofreading, Web design, and technical support for Web sites!

I'd also like to mention last week's featured artist, Linda Vining, whose gorgeous paintings and lively products are as inspiring as they are lovely.

Check out all of this week's specials at our Specials page, or go browsing in our little Shoppes village to see what's new and what's on sale.

MY FAVORITE DISCOUNT? Frances Norton Honich has put her beautiful Butterfly t-shits and tote bags on a generous sale to celebrate her 8-year anniversary of completing treatment of breast cancer. Take a look! (and check out her personalized paper dolls, too!)

If YOU would like to sell in our Shoppes, find out how to partner with The Shoppes of Artella to expose your work to thousands of customers every month.!


Let your edges do the talking! Add dimension and character to altered books by creatively altering the edges of pages. Tear them to different widths, attach tags or images to the edges, add fabric or fiber edgings, or fold pages into different shapes. Creative edges make altered pages really pop!


Cross-training really works! Adding an artistic element to your writing can expand your imagery, tone, and narrative. If you are new to combining words and art, there's perhaps no medium as well-suited to writers as altering books! Simply take an old book and use the pages as your canvas. Isolate words on the page and string them together to create "found poetry". Take a look at the Artful Links section, below, for lots of altered book ideas!


1. Not only does Karen Hatzigeorgiou contribute our popular Altered Book Workshop in each issue of e-Artella, she also has one of the most inspiring Web sites I've ever seen! Her site, takes you through her many altered book projects, step by step, so that you can get inside her head and see how she puts her grand ideas together!

2. Another fabulous artist Web site is Tracy has galleries upon galleries of stunning work, including altered books, art dolls, collage, assemblage, and art journals. It's a great site to explore. Be prepared to drool!

3. Denise Mihalik, Artella contibutor and an extraordinary human being, has a new Web site that announces a spectacular art event in Philadelphia in August that I'm planning to attend. Even if you can't come to Philly, her site is an art party online that you simply must see!

If you know anyone who would love Artella just simply forward this articulation email to them and help keep Artella thriving... :-)

What can I say? It's good to be back again. This community means the world to me!

~Riding double rainbows,

Artella Founder/Editor

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