Namaste

So you may remember this post from the beginning of the year in which I tout my new yoga habit. Confession: I haven’t been to yoga since there was snow on the ground.

While part of it was the “not enough time” trap all women seem to stumble into, most of the reason for my faulty attendance was that I just couldn’t find a class or instructor that gave me what I was looking for from yoga.

Some yogis love to sweat, some love to stretch, but what I was really looking for was the mental clarity that comes from moving slowly and concentrating on your breath. My intro class was fantastic, I left feeling light and clear, but once I started attending various beginner-level classes, the pace picked up and I missed holding poses for several minutes while I let my tension ease. I read this post from The Mollie Shambeau Show a few days ago, and it hit me hard.

Shavasana is known as “Corpse Pose” because it’s here, in these final few moments that we die. Not just as an idea, but actually. Understanding that one has collected so much during their lives. Not only books, houses, bank accounts—but inwardly… the memories of insults, the memories of flattery, the memories of your own particular experiences—neurotic achievements which give you position. To die to all that without argument, without discussion, without any fear—just to give it up—will create freedom.

Die to everything that you know psychologically so that your mind is clear, not tortured… so that it sees things as they are, both outwardly and inwardly.

You came to your mat as one person. You came to your mat as the thinker. You came to your mat being that of your thoughts. As you leave your mat today, you’re brand new. You’re no longer your thoughts or your doubts or your fears. And each and every day you come to your mat, this is what you do. You shed your old, and you become new. Innocent, fresh… and through this innocence, this is where you live in compassion… when you bring your yoga off of your mat and into your world. 

Namaste.

I have a bad habit of thinking about the stupid things I’ve said or done over and over and over… and over. I let these moments that I’m sure no one else remembers wiggle in and keep me up at night, shaking my confidence and reminding me that I’m not as great as I sometimes let myself think. Toxic thoughts are tough to shake on your own, and sometimes we just need someone else to tell us to knock it off. Truth be told, part of the reason I’m writing this post is so I have this quote available anytime I need to read it. Oh, and anyone know a good yoga class?

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Mono-a-Mono

One of the best parts about buying handmade directly from the artist is the ability to collaborate on custom work. Unfortunately, this can be an expensive, overwhelming and relatively slow process, so I’ve been working on ways to make custom letterpress pieces more accessible. The solution? A customizable piece with a finite number of choices for each aspect of the design.

Introducing custom monogram note cards with the following options:

1. Choose your initials (2-4 characters):

2. Choose your design:

3. Choose a color from the palette:

Purchase the listing and wait just a few weeks for your cards!

Making the best of it

As promised: My latest print! While not quite the way I imagined, I’m really excited about it because of what I’ve learned in the process of creating it. First of all, the type: this is the first time I’ve locked up a mixed type layout this large and it went pretty well! It’s also helped me determine what typefaces I need to add to my collection.

The design: I always love letterpress prints with a lot of depth created by overlapping transparent imagery. My inks this time around weren’t as transparent as they should have been–I’m learning just how much tint base medium I need mixed into my pigment. Overall, I’m pretty happy with the outcome and I know exactly what direction to pursue in future work.

“Be kind for everyone is fighting a hard battle.”

–Plato

I believe human nature is inherently good. Why is it so easy to allow greed, carelessness and, perhaps worst of all, wanting to be right to get in the way of our nature? This last year has been a period of introspection and personal growth, and I think one of the most important things maturity teaches us is that our struggles are no more difficult than anyone else’s. Everyone has their own cross to bear; whether it’s an ailing loved one, a failing relationship, a never-ending to-do list, or financial woes. Yours is no more important than your neighbor’s, theirs is no more important than yours. With a little compassion we might just all make it through unscathed.

Be kind to each other. There are more important things than being right, looking better or getting people on your side. Treat those you encounter with kid gloves, you never know what’s just beneath the surface.

One month

It’s officially been a month since I’ve blogged. One. Whole. Month. I’m finding it difficult to get back into the swing of things tonight, so I thought I’d start things back up with a post about what’s been going on with Bess—and me!

6.9 Finished a brand new print (detail above, more to come!)

6.20 Delivered more cards to Absolutely Art. Word is they’re selling like hotcakes, but she’s still got a pretty good stock so stop in!

6.22 Happy Birthday, 622 press! Also, finish July issue of BRAVA, oh, and move out of apartment. Whew!

6.23 Leave for vacation! Poolside lounging, here I come!

6.24 Start Girl with the Dragon Tattoo series

6.28 Finish Girl with the Dragon Tattoo series… so good!

7.4 Happy Birthday, America! Total confusion about which day of the week it is ensues.

7.5 Interview with Wedding Lovely! Check it out!

7.7 Favorite Day of the Year: Dave Matthews comes to Wisconsin!