I was looking for reading music and stumbled upon an amazing harp concert. I love that this is my first impression of Sophia Kiprskaya. Her level of talent is iconic. This needed to be shared because I’m sure fellow classical enthusiasts and dark academics who love the harp will cherish it.
Have you heard of her before? Which of her performances would you recommend?
Look, dreamcatchers aren’t “aesthetic” investments. The regalia of indigenous American tribes aren’t Halloween costumes. Instead, you should invest in this wonderful list of Native American brands I found on Tumblr, where the artistry is spectacular and deserves more recognition. I really love Jamie Okuma‘s work (her work is in the featured image above [click here for her Instagram]) and Urban Native Era with their “You Are On Native Land” line.
Credit to the original poster, indigenoustifa, and the blogger who created the list, ficklewitchsupporter.
Not all the store links work, but most of them do. Please take time to check out this incredible art.
I hope you all are well. I’m finally getting back into a good working groove again for my art projects and my novel, which reminded me about how much I miss blogging about my progress/research.
Starting with the progress with my novel series, what really helped was using a cork board and sticky notes to jot out the main plot. My first draft was written with more of a pantser mentality. I kept beating myself up for it before, but now that I’ve accepted that I’m at where I’m at and there’s no changing that, I can lean more into my plotter side.
Using a cork board and sticky notes to track the plot/character arc of one of my protagonists has helped tremendously. I think seeing the story’s progression through one character’s point of view and having more of a visual/tangible mode of seeing my work brought it more to life. Specifically, I was able to pinpoint how many other characters cross the path of this protagonist along with what areas and events they come to interact with whether they expect it or not. It’s an interesting process because initially I was down on myself for not plotting more for my first draft, but it was pointless to think that way. I’m learning to trust my creative process more and I’ve accepted how chaotic it is, but it’s also has a natural order to it. In other words, there’s an order to my chaos and I should never have compared myself to other authors/writers to begin with. It does help to learn about the creative process of others, but at the end of the day, just do your own thing.
As for the Russian/Slavic witchcraft venture, I previously posted of a podcast I listen to where author Natasha Helvin describes her own experiences. I’ve been reading both of her books Russian Black Magic and Slavic Witchcraft. Both are intriguing reads and are very inspiring for a specific character of my novel, which I hope I can capture well with the utmost respect of the craft.
Here’s the Instagram of one fellow writer I follow who reminded me of cork board plotting.
Now, for my art projects. I focused on my poetry collection for most of the winter season. While working, I kept having these visual ideas being paired with my poems. I’ve done photography with poetry before when I was younger (like a teenager), but looking back on my creations in the past, it’s not really up to my standard of quality today, although I love that I tried my best back then. So what’s the next level? Photomanipulation. I’ve been taking lessons with photoshop, photography, and digital art to see if I can bring my dark fantasy vision and poetry to life through a darker medium. The surrealists and dark self-portraiture artists of the photoshop composite world are amazing.
Danny Bittencourt is a Brazilian visual poet whose work I’ve fallen in love with.
Another is Flóra Borsi, whose fine art self-portraits are surreal and captivating.
I hope to enter this world one day, so I’m working hard. Diving into the world of photoshop and photography was very unexpected while working on my poetry. At first it felt like I was distracting myself from the main goal of the project. Quite the opposite; this is exactly what I’ve been wanting to do since I was a teenager. I don’t want the poetry collection to just be in a book. I want each work to be a masterpiece.
Here’s to ambition and the crazy chaos of creativity.
I had not thought of violets late, The wild, shy kind that spring beneath your feet In wistful April days, when lovers mate And wander through the fields in raptures sweet. The thought of violets meant florists’ shops, And bows and pins, and perfumed papers fine; And garish lights, and mincing little fops And cabarets and soaps, and deadening wines. So far from sweet real things my thoughts had strayed, I had forgot wide fields; and clear brown streams; The perfect loveliness that God has made,— Wild violets shy and Heaven-mounting dreams. And now—unwittingly, you’ve made me dream Of violets, and my soul’s forgotten gleam.
Alone in the library room, even when others Are there in the room, alone, except for themselves: There is the illusion of peace; the air in the room Is stilled; there are reading lights on the tables, Looking as if they’re reading, looking as if They’re studying the text, and understanding,
Shedding light on what the words are saying; But under their steady imbecile gaze the page Is blank, patiently waiting not to be blank.
The page is blank until the mind that reads Crosses the black river, seeking the Queen Of the Underworld, Persephone, where she sits
By the side of the one who brought her there from Enna, Hades the mute, the deaf, king of the dead letter; She is clothed in the beautiful garment of our thousand
I came across this article by Joanna Scutts while looking for magazines that accepted poetry. I was pulled in by “Feminize Your Canon” with a “Yes. I love this. Feminize My Canon!” before clicking the link. It started out to be very engaging and soon violent. Then revival and raw power burst through in the unpublished, discredited, and haunting prejudice, both racial and gendered, throughout Alice’s life. What makes this remarkable to me was as I read on I saw myself and I saw the protagonist of the novel series I’ve been working on for years now. The similarities between all three of us brought a vivacity to what seemed almost fated to me, but honestly, the story of Alice Dunbar-Nelson can summon the courage of any light-skinned African American woman lacking a sense of belongingness and fights for it daily. When you fight for belongingness and acceptance, really you’re on the path of self-trust and self-respect; dignity is the name of the game and it’s hard to play, but the arts can be the greatest weapon drawn if it fits firmly in your hands and helps you declare your uniqueness with boldness and honor.
I don’t know how else to describe Alice Dunbar-Nelson, other than what I’ve said, what I’ve been further inspired to do, which is create forever, and to just add that she was a remarkable soul, who knew she deserved better and made sure she got it. To the article writer Joanna Scutts, thank you. To the scholars and writers who revitalized Alice’s life and life’s work, thank you. I value your efforts highly and I’m grateful you didn’t censor the relationships she had with men and women amongst her achievements as a political activist who “in her energy and appetite for life’s pleasures, from the literary to the human to the natural, Alice Dunbar-Nelson celebrated beauty and freedom to the end of her life,” (Scutts 2020). That’s the dream, right there.
Do you ever catch yourself trying to gain the approval of others? I consider that to be a bad habit of mine. There’s nothing I need to prove and trying to make people understand where I’m coming from can be such a drag. I feel like I’m surrounded by people who don’t try to get […]
Prompt via The Life of Dee: Autumnal crafts for toddlers – give us ideas on what our little ones could make this season. I don’t have children. I’m not crafty. I wasn’t even allowed to do autumn crafts because when you’re raised by Christian parents, they think everything is a gateway to Satan. So I […]
It’s so important to have just one day completely stress free, but that’s not easy…like ever. Considering that many of us have been “grinding” so to speak either in the workforce or in school most of our lives, we can’t just say, “I’m relaxing now,” and boom! You’re chill AF. That’s not life. That’s not […]
“The reason Harvey is so relevant I feel, is because I’m interested in the sense that many creative introverts I know have, which is that we’re somehow on the outside, that we don’t fit in, that we’re not approved of by society, that we’re somehow doing “it” wrong (whatever it is.) Just that sense of otherness.
And that can make living the life of a creative and actually fulfilling our true dreams and pursuing our true calling/path VERY difficult.”
The Creative Introvert is my new favorite podcast. I finally found someone who gets it and dedicates her time to letting other introverts know they’re not alone when it comes to dealing with the mess of anxiety while also being a creative spirit. Please check out the podcast in the link below. There are some very good points on respect one’s art and themselves in this episode and I truly appreciate Cat for sharing her insight.
Is luck on my side? Will my goals in life that can lead to success? Will my prosperity candle spell work? Not everything is guaranteed, but one thing is: change. Change. It’s chaotic, random, and often not noticed until it’s noticed. Lately, I’ve been exploring how my agnosticism and absurdism plays around with my mystic […]
For real?! This was my last post! Ugh! Well, I will show off two fun purchases to add some spook to my sketchbooks. I bought a spooky sticker pack and decorated one of my sketchbooks. I love it. Also, I’ve been enjoying the horror manga short story collection “Smashed” by Junji Ito. These stories have […]
Decorate your house for Autumn/Halloween – show us pics of your decor. Well what a coincidence. I was at the Spirit Halloween store recently looking for a fleece throw, but I couldn’t find any. Instead I found a bird’s skull and an iron key I want to use as a door knocker for decor and […]
…that they never existed in the name of evil or to make the “darkness” seem evil. The shadow is the part of us that’s trying to tell us what we need to be our real selves. It’s a process, but a worthwhile one where you do feel better about revelations about yourself. Shadow work isn’t meant for you to find the “enlightenment” destination, where you understand everything and you’re supposedly just “done” learning about yourself. It’s an ongoing journey that can be taken in gratitude if you humble yourself and listen to your shadow.
Tips on dealing with the darker mornings/evenings – what do you do to make getting up easier when it’s dark outside. Prompts by The Life of Dee. I don’t get seasonal depression during the autumn/winter like most people do. It hits me during the spring/summer, but just because it happens during a different time of […]
Prompt: How to make your home cosy this Autumn – share with us what we can do to transition our home from cool Summer to warm Autumn. Prompts by The Life of Dee. For me, it’s about comfort and ambience. Blankets, cardigans, hoodies, and sweaters are a must. Candles have to be the right size […]
Is this another way of saying, “Am I a workaholic?” I’m not sure. I do think it’s weird that I don’t feel well when I’m not working in a stressful environment or that I’m not really working if I’m not stressed. That’s the kind of mentality the dark academia fandom bonds over, actually. It’s a […]