beau regard

Today I went to the gym for some exercise.  It felt great to get a good solid run in and some stretching too.  I spend so much time bundled up in layers of wool underwear, hats, scarves and down – it was just nice to be all warmed up for an hour.  There is a track at the gym that I like to run around and around…. and around.  Unlike a treadmill, the track provides me with plenty to look at, people to watch and wonder about, and a window well to keep a notebook where I can stash ideas.

Did you ever have one of those play-doh machines when you were a kid?  The one that pushes the play-doh through templates to create cool shapes?  During my visit to Mammoth Cave, the ranger guides would often compare the formation of gypsum crystals to the play-doh machine process.  Depending on the shape of the limestone void, various gypsum shapes would appear.  My own artistic practice has a play-doh machine quality to it.  When I run, ideas and notions seem to seep through my pores, almost as if being pushed out by the effort of a hard run.  This is good and happens more often than not.  I am grateful for it.

Currently I’m developing ideas for a finished Mammoth Cave related work that for now feels just slightly out of reach.  So I’m running and drawing and continuing to view things through what my friend Elizabeth calls, my “artist’s gaze”.  This beau regard (french, loose translation can be beautiful gaze, or beautiful eye) is what artists are known and ideally valued for.  Their unique perspective on the world is why we visit their blogs, purchase their art and music and writing.  It is a rare day that my world is not made more open or brighter because of the work of a fellow artist.

Nudges have been coming from various directions for some time for me to get some work made to sell on Etsy.  I have been dragging my heals, as is my nature. Somehow I haven’t felt cool enough, or productive enough, or…. I don’t know.  I have just avoided it.  But when my dear friend (and French medievalist) Anna made the play on my name as beau regard, it occurred to me that maybe I could make a go of it on the Etsy site with a cool name like that.  (insert a chuckle here at my sheer silliness.)  So we’ll see where it goes.  I’d love to get back to the wax table once I improve the venting in my studio.  Above are collages wrapped up for an artist trade thing I participated in this week.  They are pretty packages.  Things that might work nicely in the Etsy realm.  Baby steps.  The dip of a toe into this new realm.  This all will hopefully coincide with some updates on my website which is such a wonderful extension of my artist self.  I will, as always, keep y’all posted.

Meantime, I am trying to insert little glimpses of magic into my daily life.  I picked up these sweet flower faery lites at High Street here in town.  With our trip south over the holiday, we had used a honeysuckle branch with colored lights as a makeshift Christmas tree.  It was time for the color lights to go away until next year, but I really like the lights-on-a-stick idea… these should take us into spring time….

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