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.

Writing Without Historical and Cultural Inaccuracy or Offense

Why These Native Americans Observe A National Day of Mourning Every Thanksgiving

Hello,

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.

Be well.

  • Leliel

Featured Image: © Danny Bittencourt

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.

© Alice Moore Dunbar-Nelson – Source: Poetry Foundation

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

Misunderstandings of the sacred text.

© David Ferry – Source: Poem Hunter

Someone standing at the mouth had
the idea to enter. To go further

than light or language could
go. As they followed
the idea, light and language followed

like two wolves—panting, hearing themselves
panting. A shapeless scent
in the damp air …

Keep going, the idea said.

Someone kept going. Deeper and deeper, they saw
others had been there. Others had left

objects that couldn’t have found their way
there alone. Ocher-stained shells. Bird bones. Grounded
hematite. On the walls,

as if stepping into history, someone saw
their purpose: cows. Bulls. Bison. Deer. Horses—
some pregnant, some slaughtered.

The wild-
life seemed wild and alive, moving

when someone moved, casting their shadows
on the shadows stretching
in every direction. Keep going,

the idea said again. Go …

Someone continued. They followed the idea so far inside that
outside was another idea.

© Paul Tran – Source: Poetry Foundation

“Oft have I thrilled at deeds of high emprise, / And yearned to venture into realms unknown,”

Alice Moore Dunbar-Nelson – “To Madame Curie”

A powerful force from history greeted me today through The Paris Review: Alice Dunbar-Nelson.

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.


More Artist Recognition & History Study

Why These Native Americans Observe A National Day of Mourning Every Thanksgiving

The Power and History of Samhain

Embracing Your Weird and Respecting Your Art – The Creative Introvert Podcast


One Day They’ll Know – [Just Me]

During my meditations this week, I accepted an important sacrifice I had to make. Sacrifice is strange to me. Sometimes I go out of the way trying to find a way where I can get everything I want without losing anything. I try to strategize, work around the way people perceive me, hoping I can […]

“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.”

Cat Rose Neligan – “5 Tips for Embracing Your Weird + Making Great Work” – The Creative Introvert

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.


More Artist Recognition

The Most Beautiful Response to Sleep Paralysis – Nicolas Bruno

Great Gothic Rock/Symphonic Rock Bands I Found!

Evanescence – Use My Voice

“Home” Is Where The Art Is – Three Days Grace


Native American Artistry to Invest In – [Artist Recognition]

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 […]

sad ethnic female leaning forward on railing of terrace and looking down

What Almost Kills the Artist? [Just Me]

Many creatives are caught in the rat race while trying to maintain the status of being a valiant competitor just to make ends meet. Doing this almost kills us.  As creative and critical thinkers, whether neurotypical or neurodivergent, being forced to follow a regimen is something we can excel to keep AND completely fail to […]

hands of crop faceless man under water

Water Magic and Enchanting – [Witchy Experiences]

“The primary power of water is in assisting the creation of forms for the expression of consciousness, providing nutrition for their continued existence, and physical purification.” Mark Stavish – The Path of Alchemy: Energetic Healing & the World of Natural Magic (Pathways to Enlightenment) When I started practicing, I wasn’t really into using water because […]

YouTuber TripWhip discusses his own shadow experience and hits the nail on the head with what the shadow truly reveals to you.

Read – “What is Shadow Work? – Metaphysical and Occult Terms 101” to learn more about working with your shadow self.

My shadow has taught me…

…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.

Comment below if you have any insights or questions about shadow work.


Metaphysical and Occult Topics

What is Alchemy?

The Ritman’s Library Occult Archive

Getting Started with Tarot

Are You Obsessing Over Your Twin Flame? Stop.


text

I Blame Lara Croft for My Polyglot Goals – [Just Me]

I’ve wanted to be a polyglot since I was a kid and I blame Lara Croft (the movies and the games). I was head over heels in love with her. Having her level of erudition and speaking so many languages was so attractive to me. But how do you achieve that? I’ve done the research […]

chords sheet on piano tiles

Being an “almost” Classical Musician – [Just Me]

Is it weird being insecure about this? When my mother noticed I was teaching myself piano at the age of 4 or 5, I started taking lessons early and I was on the classical track with this teacher. Then my passion for marital arts led to my mother saying she could only pay for one. […]

low light photography of books

Four Current Reads – [Biblioblogging]

Do you mind if I share what I’ve been reading? Still reading and enjoying! Lost Gods by Brom This has been a wonderful read so far. The narrative style is specific enough for the sake of immersion, but also jumps into the action of the story without too much wait. Traveling through Hell from the […]

This is a video from the YouTube channel XELASOMA, who I cam across recently. I’ve been diving into the Jungian archetype meanings after taking a test and doing some research specifically for my novel and the VPD articles. I think this youtuber explained The Magician so precisely and eloquently. I hope you enjoy his video and subscribe.

Let me know what you think. What archetype do you resonate with?

woman sitting near white wooden door

What are the pros and cons of being an overthinker? – [Weekend Reflections]

I’ve been taking time to observe my own work and lifestyle habits to improve productivity as an artist and entrepreneur, which led me to notice the pros and cons of my greatest blessing and curse: overthinking. Overanalyzing past events is my comfort zone to an obsessive point. I review my behavior and the behaviors of […]

photo of woman carrying a cardboard

No Justice, No Peace – [News/Website Update]

The page that was once “Stand Up – BLM/LGBTQ+” is now No Justice, No Peace, which provides resources, volunteer/donation opportunities, and more regarding the institutional and system prejudices being perpetuated in the USA. The page has been updated to include the Stop Asian Hate movement. I will soon be adding sources regarding how you can […]