Visual Storytelling: She Pitched Her Tie and Put on Pearls

Mixed Media Art, She Pitched Her Tie and Put on Pearls by Bernadette Rose Smith A string of pearls with the affirming message, “Today is the day to find courage within,” lightly dance around the tail of a man’s tie like the wave of the Chinese symbol for yin and yang. The oyster with its soft, sensitive body, not unlike a woman’s, creates a pearl when challenged by the irritation and discomfort of a grain of sand or grit. Wisdom that comes from life experience is hard won in the same way pearls are created. “Pearls of wisdom” dance around a woman’s throat from where she gives voice to hard won opalescent experiences of sacred passion, desire, being, creativity and so much more.   What happens when a woman wears a tie or puts on pearls? As women – single, married, divorced – how do we maintain balance with bringing home the bacon and frying it? My desire with Ties and Pearls was to create a piece that spoke to the invisible partnering of the male and female in each of us, and how that manifests in our relationships in a visually appealing way. The archetypal power struggle that happens when masculine and feminine energies within us are out of balance (Jung referred to it as the anima and animus) is the inspiration for this art that mused its way into my studio with this passage from that book I am tearing up.   "I see where my husband became my life, rather than came to be in my life. Somehow I deluded myself into thinking that I was strong enough not to lose myself in him. That I would know if I crossed the line. How did I get so far over it? How? I spent too many years carrying on like a man. My own distorted spin on the women’s liberation bra burning era I grew up in.... As a woman, safety in a man’s world required liberation from myself. What a paradox! The inner male I took on for strength was the one leading me astray. The very behavior I despised in a man who could not honor, recognize, or value a woman was the very behavior I supported when my male side shadowed my female side...When I let “him” lead, I am chasing my shadow, going nowhere fast. Did I lose myself in what I felt driven to, or find myself? I don’t regret for a minute letting the woman in me take the lead ... I don’t regret the time I’ve taken to get to know her, to learn to trust her. She has the map to my psyche. The wisdom and strength I need to hold true to my soul’s calling. And through all of this she is showing me how to give of myself without giving up myself. Better for my inner male to provide the fuel and momentum under her direction and inspiration. That way they both arrive at a place they actually want to be. A much healthier arrangement!” Excerpt from Bernadette’s Pages: An Intimate Crossroad   This was a big classroom for me. My need to find balance and create a safe space for expression as a woman wearing pearls found its way into many journal entries through the course of that 9-month period of separation-on-the-brink-of-divorce ... and beyond. While musing over this art, my desire was to create a light visual for a heavy topic. From a distance, I wanted this to be simple and graphic. (Yang/Masculine) Up close, I wanted the layers to reveal themselves slowly, to entice the viewer into more intimate discoveries. (Yin/Feminine) In the struggle to find a balance, puzzle-pieced together text creates a man’s stark white dress shirt squared off against the inviting curve of a woman’s red bra. Background, created by text collage, represents the boundless body of a woman and the content of her experience. She Pitched Her Tie and Put on Pearls by Bernadette Rose Smith So many rich layers of metaphors spoke to me while playing with this. Here are just a few, captured with images and captions to springboard you into entertaining your own thoughts about this subject. Mixed Media Art, She Pitched Her Tie and Put on Pearls by Bernadette Rose Smith, Close Up of Pearls   The straight angular tie is cast off and almost phallic. (Something I didn’t notice until later.) It is the only piece of the art where text was not the substrate used to make its form. Gold thread and striped text whisper to challenges in breaking free of choking restraints A string of pearls, with their affirming message, lightly dance around tail of a man’s tie. Balanced, at last, like the wave of the Chinese symbol for yin and yang. Mixed Media Art, She Pitched Her Tie and Put on Pearls by Bernadette Rose Smith, Tie and Dancing Pearls Chinese characters for peace and joy (alternate corners) provide a foundation for moving forward when the male and female at last dance in harmony. Every woman has her story in relationship to ties and pearls. (Gentlemen, I invite you to consider your side of the fence with this because you have a relationship with ties and pearls as well.) I would love to hear about them! Are they working? Not working? In for revisions? And, if you are a creative-type, how do feel you about using your chosen craft as a way to see an aspect of yourself or life differently – or perhaps more lightly?  

#5 from the series “Tear Up that Book and Make Art.” Prints available in the Messy Room Art Gallery (Under Construction) If you are interested in a print, Contact me.

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Forgive it Forward: Grievance Trafficking

Forgive it Forward Grievance Trafficker Gathering grievances is tedious and soul consuming. Past, present or future. AND have you noticed how short-lived their collective pleasure is? No matter how many you manage to gather they NEVER make you feel better for very long. There is no magic number that brings a sustainable relief. AND if you are grievance gathering to get off a guilt hook (like in a relationship) ... well, that never ends well because it never ends. The other 'guilty' party will always accept the challenge to top your grievance with one of theirs. Think about it. AND if you join the trafficker realm (this is when you invite other friends or institutions to join you) you are pretty much assured your (and their) future will look like what you are trying to erase, correct or escape because you just multiplied the lens you are ALL looking through. Here's the thing. We've ALL done it at one time or another. So, what if we get out of the grievance trafficking business and start living. REALLY living a life without grievances. Just think of all the free time and energy we will have for what REALLY feels good!

Heart Bypass: Living and Loving on the Highway

Heart Bypass: Living and Loving on the Highway If you live in Atlanta, you know I-285. Those traveling the north/south or east/west interstates call it the bypass but really it’s a loop that circles the heart of the city. Locals refer to I-285 as The Perimeter. When asking directions around here, one usually starts with “Are you inside or outside the perimeter?” For insiders, driving too far outside the perimeter is akin to an “out of state” road trip. For outsiders, driving too far inside the perimeter requires a course in street life savvy, the kind that keeps you from turning down the wrong street in a Walking Dead episode. “NOoooo... don’t go THERE! Zombies ahead!” (Hey, it’s not my fault. A friend got me hooked.) These days, life outside the perimeter mimics conveniences of city life. And for some who choose to settle outside, it’s “close enough” to live on a perimeter that bypasses hardcore city commitments with softcore city-like amenities. Time was, a reasonably clear inside/outside demarcation could be made but now the inner feels a lot like the outer while navigating this Nascar-esque bypass. In the speedway blur, you think you are in the city proper. Looks like it. Feels like it. Sounds like it. Smells like it. But not it. Now, lets switch gears. (Hey, I’m working a metaphor here.) Think about the heart. Your heart. Where it resides. And who resides in it. Like Atlanta, your heart is the city. The closer to the center the stronger the pulse as blood pumps (emotions, passions, dreams, fears) through the arteries and side streets with all the pedestrian conveniences. Culture. People. Parks. Coffee shops. Nightlife. But also challenges like traffic jams, convention re-routes, and one way do not enter streets. Get the picture? This is you. You living and loving in the heart of your city. Enter new relationship. (Or awaken in an old one.) Maybe you meet this person on the loop and do the bypass-dating thing for a while. After all, it’s close and has enough of the amenities you need to make the trip worth it. Both hearts are protected while enjoying this exploration of the almost-city. You like the neighborhood, so you rev up your motor a bit and turn into the beyond casual dating zone. Day and night traffic blurs the perimeter lines as you drive deeper into their city – while they remain on the loopy bypass. Do you notice that they are riding the perimeter or choosing the bypass? If you do notice, do you:
a. Give them time. b. Hand them a map or upgrade their GPS. c. Decide close enough is enough. d. Figure you can work with it and/or change them. e. Acquiesce to this one being better than the last one. f. Evacuate. g. All of the above. h. None of the above.

What do you do if you find you are the only one in the city, the only one in your heart?

Or are you? Cities have a lot of vacant buildings – urban flight and all that. Did you fall through the cracks of a heart broken by past city dwellers or squatters? Did you take flight and not notice? Are you waiting for someone else to give you permission to move back into the city? Reclaim your heart? Did you get caught on the good enough is close enough loop and is that how they got away with looping the bypass? (Add “for so long” if you are in an old relationship.) Lots of questions, I know. But finding the answers offers a pedestrian view that allows you to occupy – not bypass – your own heart while deciding if you will continue the drive into theirs. If you don’t embrace your city life, with all its traffic jams and conventioneers looking for a good time, who will? And if you are not present to your own heart chances are you’ll dismiss theirs – or miss the exit/entrance ramps that will get you where you really want to go and ultimately reside. I know this because I am well traveled – loops and all. No judgments here, folks. Just some street savvy and a patched up heart in a city with as many streets called Forgiveness as Atlanta has called Peachtree.

Pssst: This heart bypass metaphor can be applied to other relationships you have ... like why a job is or is not working for you or where your creativity is or is not hanging out. There are no limits where the heart is concerned!

So, tell me what routes you've been taking these days!

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Bernadette’s Pages Just $7.95?

Small Press Bookwatch Review: "... the insightful and deeply personal account of an incredible journey through love, loss, and self-discovery ... vividly written and inherently wise ... Bernadette’s Pages is very strongly recommended reading"  - The Midwest Book Review
  Just Write Poster You read that right! Bernadette’s Pages: An Intimate Crossroad  is just $7.95 because you visited my messy room and clicked your way here! Am I nuts? Maybe. But for me, publishing this book has always been about getting the message of hope and forgiveness out there. Get a copy for yourself and a friend, copies for your book club, a church bookstore, a battered women’s shelter – heck, get a copy for your mail carrier. Bernadette's Pages: An Intimate Crossroad book coverYep! Just $7.95 a copy. * • Bernadette's Pages: An Intimate Crossroad • Paperback: 256 pages • Publisher: Enlightened Ink • Dimensions: 7.5 x 9.2 inches (Same size as the Artist's Way.) • Reg. List Price: 16.95
* Offer for contiguous US customers only. Ships from USA. International shipments, please contact me for shipping costs. INSPIRATION POINT • • • I love you. Three simple words. There’s someone else. Three simple words. Ever fall in love? Ever fall out? Relationships are complicated. Mostly because they start with you. Not as in “You make relationships complicated” but as in “YOU HAVE TO LOVE YOURSELF FIRST … if you don’t, it GETS complicated.” Betrayal. Forgiveness. Love. In the roundabout from “I do” to “I don’t” to “Now what,” this book shares a love story of a different kind. I’m not an expert or a celebrity. And I don’t have a reality TV show. But I did publish a journal that exposes a messy time in my relationship with my life, my marriage and myself and I share it – uncensored – from both sides of the fence. What went wrong then and what is working now. Betrayal comes in many forms. Not embracing endings as opportunities to shape beginnings is one of them. I offer this book as evidence that loving – not losing – yourself when faced with disappointments or broken promises CAN lead to happily-ever-after, and that messy moments are often invitations to fall more deeply in love with yourself – whatever that looks like for you. This Book Features a Unique Format • • • Read it like my journal or treat it like your own with special side margins that invite you to capture your own thoughts! Check out B's Pages book trailer. (There’s nothing like seeing a messy smidgen of your life put to music. Like a wedding video in reverse, without the “I do’s” and the bad dancing. Almost worth the tears.)  

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Raggedy Ann

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Fast forward to now; as the sun sets on the day that would have marked thirty-seven years of marriage, Adolan (Tramadol) dangers. Adolan (Tramadol) no rx, I watch it set, a recently divorced woman.

For the past couple days I have felt grief.

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What to do, Adolan (Tramadol) trusted pharmacy reviews. Adolan (Tramadol) reviews, There is no doll hospital for this one but this much I know; if she gets replaced, I will “upcycle” her myself, order Adolan (Tramadol) from United States pharmacy. Adolan (Tramadol) photos, And if she remains with me – well, she will have to stop telling me those stories or get used to me hitting the mute button, ordering Adolan (Tramadol) online.

Anyone else with a Raggedy Ann?


The Messy Room and my Facebook Page are two ways that I share the “HOW” of it. Please join me and SPREAD THE WORD.

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