Author Archives: Natalie Roberts

Customized Planner

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always wanted to design my own personal planner.  So last year, I started with a plain three-ring binder or as I liked to call it, my Five Dollar Planner.  I kept everything organized in various sections by removable sticky tab dividers, and by the end of the [...]

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New Web Design

A couple months ago we tried a magazine web design layout for the site, but found over time that the content just wasn’t as accessible.  So this past weekend, the site got a new look weekend along with an update to WordPress 2.7.  This new design is based on the original chronological format with some additional features including post icons. [...]

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Winter Meditation in the Woods

Image Available for Free Download in the following Desktop Wallpaper sizes: [1600x1200] [1280x800] [1024x768]

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How to Organize your Digital Photos

My digital photos are somewhat organized, but over the years, I have used different folder naming conventions, which makes it increasing difficult to find what I want easily. So today, I developed a method to organize the images using a combination of category and date driven folders.

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As a visual artist, I have often been asked to define my style, and nine times out of ten, I fail miserable at being able to defining my style in words. Yet, if you look at my portfolio, my style is very evident. From the bold colors to the crisp blacks lines, there is a common thread that connects my works of art that have been created over the years.

Part of the hesitation to define my style comes from knowing that labels stifle creativity. Yet, there is a balancing act that takes place in knowing yourself as an artist and giving yourself the creative freedom to explore. As Julia Cameron states in Walking in this World:

“Art” is less about what we could be and more about what we are than we normally acknowledge. When we are fixated on getting better, we miss what it is we already are–and this is dangerous because we–as we are–are the origin of our art. “We” are what makes our art original. If we are always striving to be something more and something different, we dilute the of what it is we actually are. [In] doing that, we dilute our art.

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This week’s theme at Inspire Me Thursday is Nervous. It comes at the perfect time to explore this emotion, as our economy is, on the surface, unraveling before our very eyes.

Many people are nervous about something… Nervous about losing a job or wondering how one might actually find a job in this kind of economy. Despite this overwhelming aura of anxiety and despair (perpetuated by the news media at large,) I cannot help feel anything but peace, hope and joy.

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Mapping your Interests

This morning I started searching for weekly art challenges, but didn’t come across anything that called out to me so I returned to reading one of the chapters on discovering a sense of perspective in Walking in this World by Julia Cameron.

One of the sections in this chapters calls you to map out your interests in groups of [5]. So far, I’ve only got four with each prompt, but it’s a start. Also, not all of her prompts call out to me so I created a couple new categories of my own:

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Windows of Swirling Possibilities

For this week’s creative prompt at Inspire Me Thursday, Melanie offers a poem by Rumi. If you read it very slowly, it might call out to you, awaken your senses:

Out beyond ideas
of wrongdoing and rightdoing,
there is a field.

I’ll meet you there.

When the soul lies down
in that grass,
the world is too full to talk about.

Ideas, language
- even the phrase “each other” -
do not make any sense.

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Adventures in Drumming

A couple months ago, we came across a djembe drumming class at Sacred Grounds lead by Heather DeRigo that inspired me to get into drumming. The documented health benefits alone were great reasons to pick up this new adventure into the musical arts.

Each time I sit down to play, I’m reminded of why I love drumming. It helps me become aware of when I’m tense and gives me a means to release the frantic energy that arises from a stressful day at the office. It’s also a great way to practice active meditation and become aware of my breathing.

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Little sparks of electricity

In my interpretation of this week’s theme at Illustration Friday, I decided to capture the little sparks of “electricity” that you can feel by reaching out and touching someone. As C. J. Franks once said: “Love and electricity are one in the same, my dear. If you do not feel the jolt in your soul [...]

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