Sunday, December 25, 2016

Happy Winter Holidays (On the Road)



Happy Winter Holidays from somewhere in NJ!

No matter what you celebrate, I hope that you are having a beautiful season and last week of the year!
This year I had to celebrate Solstice on the 18, partly because I couldn't find a celebration happening on the actual Solstice and partly because I was so busy getting ready for this trip, (I'm on my second day of road trip down south!)




















Even though Halloween has always been my absolute favorite holiday, (when I was little I used to dream of growing up to design casual outfits for the entire month, because I assumed everyone wanted to be dressed in Halloweeny apparel all month without the burden of a costume at all times lol,) Winter Solstice has always been very important to me.
The Holiday season seems so magical, even if energetically it is less so that Halloween, people's mindsets shift and you can feel that in the air. I loved the Holiday season as a littler kid because I always felt like ghosts and badness could not get into the houses as long as you had the Xmas lights on, in my mind ghosts don't like all that cheeriness, nor Santa haha. I still love how the world feels safer during this time.












I've never celebrated Xmas religiously. But I've always loved the Pagan side of it. The tree, the holy and mistletoe decorations, the lights, the gifts and Santa!! All these are always so wonderful and magical and available to all because they have nothing to do with Christianity or any modern religion.
www.ColiBreePhotogrART.com





























Winter Solstice is such a sacred time; as we experience the darkest day of the year, and get together to welcome the Light again, we acknowledge and thank the darkest parts of ourselves. The darkness brings a slower time of introspection, to sit with our own darkness, thank it and accept is so we can let it go into the Light. Things that have always been there surface for us to akckoledge them and heal them when the time is right, without this darkness there would be no growth just as it is in Nature.
This year I got to celebrate Solstice with one of my favorite persons and we went to an open Wiccan Circe in Rockport, (which is a beautiful town and looked even better with all the seasonal decorations) and in a sacred space by the fire and next to the ocean we got to raise energy for the World and the Universe, and welcomed the new Light into our lives :)


























Christmas, despite the religious meaning people put into it and whatever extra rituals it follows that I may not know about, is most popular for the Pagan traditions it follows. When Nature seems to be dead, we bring an evergreen into our homes to honor the abundance of mother earth, and remind us that there is still hope and life persists, green is the symbolic color of life that will come back again with the Light. We use holy and mistletoe because they have always been considered sacred plants that are still used to this day for different medicines, physical and spiritual by some Native American groups and they guard against negativity. And all those fairy lights we decorate with shine on us when the Sun doesn't. Much like Solstice, there is a very strong significance between Light and Darkness in our Xmas traditions, because even though it's the darkest time of the year, these tiny lights shine brighter and look prettier when it's pitch black out. The dinner tradition is to share with our families and "clan members" the bounty that harvest brought and to sing and celebrate by the fire all that Earth has given us throughout the year until the darkness has passed and the Sun is "born again." And we also have the beautiful magic of Santa Clause, which even though it started with a real person in Nordic Europe, I do believe the jolly guy in a red suit does exist now a days as we all know him. Millions of kids believing in one thing every year and the collective unconscious do materialize something magical, even if it's only in the form of a spirit of wonder and generosity grown-ups rarely have otherwise.


























Despite religion, these traditions are ancestral and very special in their own way. Whatever else you celebrate religiously during the holidays that's a different matter, but most of the rites we follow to these day are beautifully Pagan. And despite the extreme commercialization of the one holiday over all others this season, and the fact that a lot of people break away from any spirituality this time and focus only on material goods and alcohol, we can shift our perspectives and realize most people are breaking away from their mundane lives into a happier, more generous, more peaceful states of mind and all that energy combined does raise the entire planet's vibration.



























So whatever you celebrate, hope you are enjoying the season and you take on some of the qualities you like the best abut this time of the year and carry them over throughout 2017.

Love and Light to all <3

Monday, December 19, 2016

A Very Belated November's Inside the Theme



The end of the year is a very busy season and the ladies running the IGGPPC seem to have their hands full, so there haven't been any Inside the Theme "official" questions posted for November and December, usually I would just skip the theme, especially with everything I have on my plate, but November's Theme was all about Disney!! I was very excited for November and kept waiting and waiting to participate as much as possible, but not a lot happened and the few things they did have, I couldn't make them work with my schedule. However, I couldn't pass the chance to write about Disney!! Even if it's not part of the official thread and it's a month behind.
Each month, the community has the usual Inside the Theme blog posts where everyone answers the same questions and on twitter they ask other related questions every Wednesday and Friday. So I went on Hose Quinn's twitter feed to hunt for these "extra" questions so I'd have something to share with you, and here they are :D


Who is your favorite Disney character?
Well, most of these questions are very hard, as how can I choose just one?! But Donald Duck is my number 1! Tinkerbell and Ariel are tied for a very close second place but almost everyone else is very close after <3



Have you ever been to a Disney theme park,  or do you have plans to go to one?
I grew up pretty much in the Florida parks. As a matter of fact, the Disney parks are all that's left of my childhood home. The house and school I grew up in are gone and my family and friends have scattered, so Disneyworld is home to me. I also grew up going to Disneyland in California about every two years and I still do especially for the D23 events, and I've also been a couple time to Disneyland Paris. My plans to go to Disney Tokyo got thwarted by cancer a couple years ago but all Asian Disney parks are somewhere in my near future :D




What is your favorite Disney Movie?
The Lion King will always be number one. but Brother Bear, Lilo and Stitch, The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Alice in Wonderland, Ratatouille, Princess and the Frog and now Moana are not far behind! Have you all seen Moana by now? It's SO good! It totally restored my faith in Disney. After all the commercialization they have given themselves to, the bad animation even with classics like Mickey and friends (heart break emoji here,) and all the invasion of Star Wars and Marvel that do not share the same values Walt created, I was getting really scared for the future, because who am I without Disney? But Moana made everything better and my identity crisis is over :P If you haven't seen it, what are you waiting for? It's so good you can almost forget it's CGI, it feels almost as magical as real hand-drawn animation <3 



What is your least favorite Disney Movie?
It's so hard to admit to not liking a Disney movie that much, and it has just happened twice ever! The first was Valiant because it didn't hold up to Disney standards and even they have been very good at hiding that icky bit of history, we all make mistakes after all right? And the second time was The Good Dinosaur, again the animation isn't up to parr, it looks more like a Dreamworks film which is not the quality I expect from Disney and the story is pretty much a rip-off from the Lion King with some twists like the annoying human kid. It was very disappointing :(
See how disappointed Donald is by this films? lol


Is there a Disney cosplay you've loved or would love to do?
I'm not great at full-on cosplays. I've done young animated Maleficent and Evil Queen though and both times was a lot of fun. I've also done the way more casual closet-cosplay version of Donald, Kim Possible, Minnie, Figment, Anna, Olaf and Ariel. I would love to do Tink and Aurora in the pink dress but I look terrible as a blond! :-/
Disneyworld and Disneyland respectively 




Which Disney Movie did you learn the most from?
All of them! I grew up only on Disney for a very long time, I keep discovering things that were clearly hidden in my subconscious mind, coloring the way I see and react to life. I apparently even learnt to dance from Disney characters. Voice inflections, drawing style, adventure sense and what that looks like, a need for animal sidekicks and looking for guidance from my ancestors, talking to the Ocean, believing in magic... As mentioned before, I am all Disney, my identity is completely intertwined with the world Walt created <3


Sunday, November 27, 2016

My First Opening Reception at an Established Gallery in Manhattan!


So the day has finally come and gone. I attended my very first Opening Reception as an artist on view in a gallery at the Chelsea art district in Manhattan!
And believe it or not I think I'm more excited now that I'm writing about it and have had time to process it, than when it was about to happen or happening.

It was very different from what I thought and definitely a learning experience. I've done pop-up shows before and those are a LOT of work for the artists before the show for very small profit and networking. Contrastingly, this as an established, professional gallery made things leading up to the show extremely painless. They recommended the printers (who were super fast and have great quality works) and provided me with framing quotes which helped a lot in making an informed decision as to where to go. I ended up finding framers near me offering a pretty good discount and overall, everything went pretty smoothly and I even gained two NY trips to get everything done and delivered as well as get some more shots and enjoy myself in the Village :)

Arguably, the things I was most excited about getting ready for the show was having family come support me and making lots of sales. But I had another thing coming!
It's never good to have expectations, expectations mean you are living out of your head and ego and not from your heart, which just makes us lose out on the beauty of the present moment.
None of my friends or family other than my mom who is always with me thank goodness, could make it and sales rarely happen the way I pictured it in my head.
     I created so many expectations that I was a bit let down by reality. In my imagination the event was cocktail formal with waiters coming around offering fancy hors d'oeuvres and lots of art critics and collectors were trying to buy everything on site and write amazing reviews that led to movie-like opportunities in just two hours. All this while my family and friends were there beaming with pride at the fact that "they knew me when" lol.
In reality it was a Chelsea reception not a 5th Avenue one in a movie, it was very casual and if there were any critics or collectors I was never aware of it. I did see quite a few people walking around with price sheets though so who knows? People were friendly and I got very positive feedback from fellow artists on view in the same show, as well as the public. There was no food and you had to go to the check-in desk to get your own water and, since it was all about mingling, there was no place to sit. So here's what I learned for next time: NO expectations. Living in the moment is the best gift I can give myself, life rarely looks like the movies, the fact that no-one tried to give me all the contents of their wallet on the spot does not mean I will not sell in the future. I also learned to eat before arriving to the gallery and never wear high heels again when you have to stay standing by your work for three hours straight! LOL


Here's the biggest negative of the night: Having to speak in public and introduce myself and my work to everyone and talk about my inspiration and intentions with my art. I hate public speaking, I have horrible classroom flashbacks with all the bullies whispering and snickering! I have the worst stage fright ever! I've never understood why others love to make authors and artists speak, the point of these creative outlets is for the work to speak for us and for us to be able to express without spoken words. Explaining your work as a visual artist, when your frozen with fear, in my opinion defeats the purpose of showing your art lol

Here are the biggest highlights: Meeting two other female photographers that have also found Spirituality and Nature conservation are completely intertwined with photography. For one is all about saving animals, for the other is all about showing the Divine perfection out in Nature and within each of us! How perfect is that synchronicity? Three female photographers in the same gallery, with work on view at the same time all trying to show a very similar message with very unique voices and techniques. The artist that works more closely with conservation is currently involved in a program to help animals being captive, like in zoos, get better living conditions. The program is currently only in the Mid-West but we exchanged cards and there's hope for a collaboration in the future! And of course the other highlight was sharing my first big moment as an artists in Manhattan with my mom, and all the things I learnt from this experience :D

It was a fun and interesting night once I got out of my head and whenever I could distract myself from my foot pain thanks to those darn heels :P





And now, here's the youtube video for a glimpse into that night:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zWleCT3fMnM 

Hope you enjoy it! And you can check my work on display physically at Agora Gallery until the last of the month or by clicking here.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving!


Thanksgiving is here! After Halloween this is my favorite Holiday :D
It is sadly being overlooked more and more each year and I don't understand why. November's still 100% about Fall, the leaves are still beautiful colors, there's piles of them to jump in, it's not as cold as winter, and harvest is wrapping up while there's still a few more weeks left of the semester and over a month for the year to end. It's a beautiful time to be out and enjoy the crisp air and lovely colors and come together with loved ones to enjoy Thanksgiving as the only holiday of the month!

I love that there is a Holiday that has nothing to do with any religion at all and that is meant to bring people together in gratitude! Gratitude is one of the highest vibrational frequencies there are in the Universe, we should hold this energy every single day, but we all tend to forget. However, we have one day a year when we're reminded to stop and think about what we are thankful for and even if it's just one country for one day, if you really come to the table and hold the intention of gratitude, it elevates the entire planet's vibration to a higher, more peaceful state. It is beautiful and since it is religion free it's the one Holiday that focuses on unity and oneness instead of the illusion of separation.

Thanksgiving is also a lovely holiday since it's not centered around gifts. It hasn't been commercialized yet and therefore not ruined, except for Black Friday but that doesn't really count, at least I don't count it. Sadly, because actual Thanksgiving day hasn't been commercialized more and more people ignore it and start celebrating a single religion's Winter holiday halfway through October!! This drives me insane, why not live in the present and enjoy every second instead of trying to push time forward and have it be the last week of the year already?! And what's worst is that they encroach on other Holidays so much and take over everything so early, that by the time the Winter Holidays do arrive, it feels overdone, over commercial and not special at all :( . Instead of ruining two or more Holidays at once and focus on the material goods we should all give time to enjoy the beauties of each month and Holiday and be grateful for the present moment. 
This year has seemed particularly bad about skipping over Fall and on to the next thing, because even in high school, much worse everyone beyond that, people are upset about politics and so they seem to throw themselves harder at something that might distract them like gifts and drinks depending on their age. But since this is a time for Gratitude, despite what is going on in the world this is what I am grateful for:
Have a roof over my head, a bed, blankets, etc.
Have healthy food and water available
Have indoor plumbing
Have clothes, shoes and accessories
Have a TV (from which people are watching the things that upset them)
Have a conscious mind (which helps people vent and complain or decide to be happy)
Have access to internet and technology (from which people are venting and arguing or trying to spread Peace and love)
Have an able body to enjoy the things mentioned above
Have people I care about with whom to argue, disagree or lecture, etc. And to love and enjoy life with

If you have all of the above as well, I invite you to shift your perspective starting today and realize we have more to give thanks to, than a lot of people in the world, and even though it sounds impossible, just by being grateful about these things you help those who haven't tapped into their abundance. 
If you lack any of the above, then you have bigger issues than to worry about what might or might not happen in the world of politics or holidays and I am sending higher energy to you so you find your way to much better things and have all your needs met through gratitude <3



I am very blessed and have many, many more things to be grateful for and do not take any of it for granted, from the fact that I can breath and hold my arms above my head to the fact I have a Wii U and loads of stationary to write to friends with and everything in between. A day to hold the energy of gratitude is so needed for our world right now and should not be overlooked. 
Hope you all have the most amazing Thanksgiving yet, and have an infinite amount of things to be grateful for.  And now, I'm off to have a wonderful vegan dinner, because cruelty-free foods and happier, freer animals are things I'm deeply thankful for as well :)



Love and Light

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

New Creative Adventures = Etsy

Hi Everyone,

This is just a small post to share with you the opening of my brand new, first ever Etsy store!!

I do firmly believe that as long as you're open to receiving and trust in the Universe, abundance will always come to us infinitely, but as the co-creator of my own reality, I've decided to help the Universe out by sending this new energy into it so it manifests things faster. :)
With the thinning of the veils that just happened and this Fall energy of transition in the world, it's an excellent time to put things out for the Universe to help us manifest.



I'm in the midsts of very exciting times right now with my first ever, Manhattan Gallery show opening this Thursday, some possibilities for adventures "cooking" right now and trying to successfully launch my store! :D
I'm both nervous and thrilled! But I figured creators have to create right? I'm usually jumping around so much between different craft and Fine Art projects anyway that the results just end up forgotten, left somewhere to collect dust or when people show interest, just given away. But I've decided, by some gentle and the occasionally not so gentle, nudge from friends and family, that these projects deserve a chance to see the light of day and be part of an energetic exchange of abundance. So this is what I'm focusing the Etsy project on now.
     There's not a lot on the store yet, but I'm hoping to continually add products and slowly branch out as inspiration strikes. I'm also working on infusing some of my products with Reiki energy so they're not only functional/decorative (depending on the piece,) but also bring their new owners an influx of good energy into their lives :)
I'm very enthusiastic about this project and the creative chances outside the Gallery world it can provide, as well as the liberty to sell some of my open ended prints at very affordable prices and the opportunity to create up-cycled products which is super important to me, to make something beautiful out of something that would otherwise end up in a landfill polluting more... So without further ado here's the store!

https://www.etsy.com/shop/coliBreeMultiFantasy


Hope you check it continually as I add more options and find something you like <3 And if you're familiar with my work at all and would like a specific print to be added feel free to let me know!

Until next time, I leave you all with this lovely affirmation we could all use :)





Monday, October 31, 2016

Halloween! A month in Pictures




A super happy Halloween to all of you! 
It's finally here, the best day in the entire year! Of course for a lot of us, Halloween is a month long Holiday, but today is the most special day of the month. 
But while I'm out Halloweening in town I'll leave you with some fun pics somewhat journaling my month. 
It's been extra eventful this years since there were two photography challenges I participated in, a Disney one and the one I cohosted for the IGGPPC with a fellow iggle Hilde :) And on top of that, there were non-stop Halloween and fall fun events to truly celebrate the season. All happening between school and photography show prep haha, but you know, I have priorities! ;)
Happy New (non gregorian calendar) year!!!

Halloween !st Salem Food Truck Fest


Halloween 6th Haunted Happenings Parade! Yay!


Halloween 8 Jack'O Lanterns and ghost stories at Salem's 1600s Pioneer Village



Halloween 11 Apple Picking and a corn maze in NH!







Halloween 15 My very first Ren-Faire at King Richard's



Halloween 16 and 19 I traveled to CT and NYC respectively first to meet a fellow iggle and other members of GGB at the Glastonbury Harvest Fest and then to drop of my photos for my gallery show and catch Matilda on Broadway :D


Halloween 23 I went to check Boston's floating of the jack'o lanterns at the Frog Pond but it was sadly, very disappointing with very few pumpkins and no floating around the pond at all :( ergo this lonely picture...


Halloween 25 went for some beautiful Fall and Halloween fun to Ingaldsby Farm 

 
Halloween 28 I kicked off Halloweekend by going to Rise of the Jack'O Lanterns which was amazing!

Finally Halloween 30 was supposed to be the day of the Silent Disco out on the street but it got cancelled due to rain :( But we didn't get that dampen our Halloween spirit and went out anyway. 

And now it is finally THE day, so while I'm out getting the last pictures (and adventures) of the month, here are both of my 31 day-picture challenges: 

#Iggletober created by Hilde and co-hosted by yours truly 





#FallIntoDisneyStyle by Disney Style

You can check both hashtags on instagram and see bigger versions of my shots here.
And there you have it, a month in pictures. Hope you all have a magickal Halloween full of treats and a beautiful Novemeber <3

 









Saturday, October 29, 2016

Heartbreak is Just Another Tool to be Better




At the beginning of the month I felt heartbroken by a bad let down and the absence of a certain person I was expecting to see for Halloween. After my initial reaction (pain and anger,) I realized I was tired of feeling this way. The pain was too familiar and after years of living with these disappointments, I think it’s time to end the vicious cycle. 

It’s so easy to get swept up in the currents of our lives and just react to what is happening as if it is being done TO us instead of FOR us, and I went with it for years but it just finally clicked. Except for those times when people pass away and we can’t help but miss them, all other forms of heartbreak have a lesson there. All this pain cannot be just because the Universe is against me or life hates me or a certain person is an insensitive, oblivious, emotional unavailable jerk! I mean, people might very well be all that, but the Universe is constantly conspiring in our favor and life is nothing more and nothing else than what we make of it, what we will it to be. And if I also remember that whatever a person does or says it’s a reflection of them and only them nothing to do with me, and everything I say or do and feel is a reflection of me ,then this situation should be fixable by me alone. 

So I decided to analyze why this pattern is so hurtful. Why does it always break my heart? What triggers me the most about these situations? And here’s a short list of what I’ve come up with in no particular order:
I’m never a priority
The person’s never here when I need them the most
Has no follow through
Cannot count on their word
Always has an excuse 
Takes no responsibility for their choices, at least regarding me
Blames life for how things work out
Says they want things they never work to get
Takes me for granted
Come and go as they please
Is emotionally unavailable
Never realizes how much they hurt me
Does not take my feelings into consideration
Disregards my time

Now that that is out of my system (and not saying that it hurts any less,) I can try to examine it more rationally and realize that a lot of what bothers me is a mirror of myself. I have put myself in situations where I’m not a priority even to myself. I have been guilty of taking the fact that I have an able body, my health, my 5 senses and some of the people that love me the most for granted. I have at least in the past, not taken responsibility whatsoever for my actions and choices and have blamed the entire Universe for things too. All these things might be so hurtful because a part of me recognizes them as pieces of my shadow self that haven’t been yet healed. 
Some other things on the list might be triggering the other side of the coin, they hurt not because they resonate with my shadow self, but because they’re supposed to. Without that pain I wouldn’t notice anything was wrong and I then wouldn’t strive to learn the lessons, to change things! 
I’ve heard we have no friends only teachers, which means that good or bad everything we experience because of others is something we can learn from. I also recently read that living with a soulmate is too painful, since they’re not here to complement us and make us happy in a romantic fantasy. They’re here to reflect back to us our flaws and broken pieces, to stir up the deepest shadows in us, the ones that hurt the most so we can face them and heal them. My heartbreak is just a tool, a way for me to know I’m alive and point to the things I have to work on.




My latest disappointment with this particular “teacher” happened earlier in the month, but it’s just the most recent out of years of going through a vicious cycle. Repetitive things like that in life almost always mean an unlearned lesson. It is something our soul in its infinite wisdom has called for and, instead of tackling it, learning what we need from it and moving on, we tend to just react, let ego take over and ignore what we could learn, so it keeps coming back again and again. 

I still haven’t found the lesson, but I know it’s important. The Universe is loudly letting me know I need to learn this now as it is happening again with my family not showing up for either my gallery show in a couple of weeks nor for the Holidays. Part of my vicious cycle when these things happen is to try to ignore it, put on a happy face and keep going. Halloween is such a fun, eventful and magical time of the year that it helped me not think about it, but the fact that life brought three almost identical situations, with very different people under very different circumstances makes me think that A) Being without a social or physically close family network is important right now for me and B) It is time I pay attention to these feelings and clear whatever it is I need to clear so it won’t happen again. 

It’s time for me to focus inward and stop trying to figure out what these other people are feeling or going through, whatever it is it is not about me, they’re lack of presence or commitment is not personal and I need to heal and learn for myself so I can move on to newer, hopefully less sad-feeling lessons…