Sunday, June 16, 2013

beginnings, in progress & endings

i went to southern california for business last week- first shot is sunrise from the airplane somewhere over northern cal-

i was able to find a hotel on laguna beach for less than the company approved hotel near the airport- sold! love the patterns & textures of the kelp & seaweed-

and a beautiful west coast sunset (viewed with a good friend who i haven't seen for a while- a big bonus to the trip)

things have been pretty hectic- lots of travel, both business and personal. i had a commission due in wisconsin by june 21. this is a 50th wedding anniversary gift, purchased by the couple's children. one of them found this image on line and asked me about doing one with 2 cranes, since cranes mate for life and also symbolize longevity.
we came to an agreement and I started working on the piece. after some discussion and back & forth we agreed on the position of the cranes. below is the completed art, which was sent off on saturday. the clients were happy with the photo, hope that they (and their parents) like the real thing too. it's so cool to be a part of milestones in people's lives like this and the last commission I did, which was a birthday gift for twins.
I have also been practicing my drawing- both in my little travel sketchbook
and in my journal- this started on Friday evening with my image in an exercise from lisa's visual journaling class. I've been dealing with bullies of one sort or another lately and trying to figure out how not to let them win. the words that emerged on the page reflect that- the recognition that someone is a bully and not letting them get away with it.
one of the groups I am involved with has a secretary who sends out long, chatty emails that are hard to follow, loaded with cutesy language signed love! x. I happen to know that this person doesn't love! me- she has made that abundantly clear. I have a very hard time wading through the missives to see what, if anything, of value is being passed along. so I finally sent the board a request to receive business communication in a businesslike manner. which was taken as a personal attack. I was called a pig. several board members gingerly said that I might have a point, but most of them will not stand up to this person.
this is destructive for several reasons- I know that there are other members of the group who don't read the emails- either deleting them or filing for later and never getting to them. at least one other member has resorted to doing what I finally did and blocking her email address. effectively many members of this group do not read the official communication because of the way in  which it is delivered. we try to get members to participate and to be professional and take pride in our organization and undermine the whole enterprise by not presenting ourselves professionally.
I am proud of myself for speaking up. I really debated doing so, because I knew that it would get ugly. but once I did I found that I was not alone in my desire for appropriate communication. when I blocked the email address I felt an overwhelming degree of relief. so although my actions may not have fixed the problem I feel better and I think that's a pretty good result.
I am working on this in general- being able to speak up and ask for perfectly reasonable things and knowing that what I asked for is reasonable whatever the reaction. bullies gain power when people are afraid to speak up. we are the ones who give them power. we can take it away.
below is a female crane doing the fake broken wing dance, presumably to keep us away from her youngster (who we did not see). I am going to think on what sort of misdirection I can use to deal some of these disruptive influences in my life right now..... I choose to have a higher tolerance for this stuff at work, but when these things occur in an extracurricular group you really have to decide if it's worth it.

have a great week! peace :)


Judy Wood said...

I am on-goingly astonished at the unprofessional behaviour of many art group members, including, sadly, the group you are associated with. I wish I had some sage advice to offer you, but this one is a bit beyond my own life experience, mercifully. I'm sure you'll figure out what is best for you, which is what really matters. Name calling? Really!!??

Barb said...

Hi Marianne, Great sunrise in the sea of clouds and sunset over the actual sea. What an awesome 50th anniversary gift. The symbolism is perfect, too. You sound busy but glad you're making time for art. I agree - if something annoys you in a social activity, block it! Social situations should enrich, not detract and drive you crazy! We need rain (like we needed snow). Why am I rambling? Better quit while I'm ahead.

Diane said...

You are one busy woman! I absolutely love your sunrise & sunset pics....LOVE my state!
The journal page is magnificent!!!