Mediation among the fallen leaves- Day 4

For today, I wanted to do another shout out to an amazing artist I found. I believe her works well qualify for the overall feeling which permeates the fall season.

Artist Chie Yoshii was born in Japan 1974 and earned her BFA at Massachusetts College of Art in 2000. Galleries and critics have acclaimed her works, which explores contrasting themes such as innocence and sensuality, strength and weakness, nature and humanity. Overall, she works with oil on canvas

In a way, she reminds me of a French artist I mentioned years ago named Anne Bachelier (ARTICLE HERE) who also features women in her paintings and uses psychological themes to convey ideas on the human condition through atmosphere, lighting and engaging well-placed symbolism.

All the women in Yoshii’s paintings are interesting studies, especially the way many of them seem to look straight at their audience. It seems almost like they are all circus performers, well aware people are watching. As such I wonder if we are even able to see their true selves.

For myself, I don’t like the feelings behind many of her paintings but I do admire many of them. She is a very talented artist and has a way of drawing audiences into every work she does.

I also enjoy her use of color throughout her works, especially the not so subtle crimson red and deep blue which pop up throughout the majority. Other common themes include butterflies, masks, dark backgrounds, birds and famous greek deities. Overall, her style is a warm mixture of Western and Eastern art styles. Feel free to explore her artworks and biography on her WEBSITE!

Day 3: Fall is about the thresholds of life

Come wayward Souls,

Who wander through the darkness,

There is a light for the lost and the meek.

Sorrow and fear,

Are easily forgotten,

When you submit to the soil of the earth.

Grow, tiny seed,

you are called to the trees.

Rise, ’til your leaves fill the sky,

until your sighs fill the air in the night.

Lift your mighty limbs,

and give praise

to the fire. “Come Wayward Souls“, Over the Garden Wall

Known to many of my friends and family, Over the Garden Wall is one of my all time favorite pieces of animation. I actually wrote a REVIEW about it several years ago and continue to study different essays and videos about its content.

As far as Autumn goes, this series definitely has an intense feeling of familiarity and brightness. It is about being lost, but found and discovering courage and identity when facing death and our many fears.

I really enjoyed the video below and if you are interested give it a look! It actually isn’t too long and has some very insightful points about this series’ story, structure and characters.

Pumpkin Season! Day 2

So today will be another recommendation but this time it will be a movie/book!

Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten. (Neil Gaiman, Coraline (2002) )

So, one of my favorite movies is Coraline (2009) based on Neil Gaiman’s 2002 book by the same name . When it came out I didn’t watch it because I was somewhat starstruck with The Princess and the Frog (2009). But I bought it for 5 dollars on a whim and discovered it is definitely my type of movie. Now I watch it all the time!

Reading the book actually came after the movie on a somewhat stormy day. Honestly that is the best time to read creepy children’s books! I finished it in a day and have since enjoyed it dozens of times on similar days. You know, the kind of days where we want to see our heroines and heros conquer evil!

I would say the best aspect of this story in either medium is the fact that Coraline had control of her fate. The other mother could not force her to relinquish her soul. She could only coerce, tantalize and trick her to give up her life. Plus, in the end Coraline defeated the other mother and freed her other victims.

It really is a story about courage and triumphing over the evils in our lives. I highly recommend this story, book or movie, especially to those who are looking for something truly engaging visually on screen and paper.

October is my favorite holiday! Day 1

great pumpkin

I decided, since I basically celebrate the whole month of October, I should follow my heart and revel in what I love about Autumn. Today will be a book recommendation and and list of what I don’t actually like about this season. I view myself as a traditionalist.

First the list. Things I don’t like about Halloween season:

  1. Depictions of blood, gore and death. It is almost like people revel in it.
  2. Skimpy Halloween costumes
  3. HORROR MOVIES. Not a fan of evil being given a winning hand. Not a fan at all.
  4. Anything to do with zombies.
  5. Most Tim Burton movies. (Exceptions: The Nightmare Before Christmas, Edward Scissorhands, the short film Vincent)
  6. Wiji boards
  7. Ghost shows or basically ANYTHING to do with possession
  8. The movie Scooby-Doo On Zombie Island (1998)
  9. Anything depicting children as evil
  10. CANNIBALISM shown or described at all.

And there you have it. Now, Halloween is my favorite holiday. After seeing this list you are probably thinking how on earth this is the case. Quite simply, I celebrate the traditional Halloween. But I will get to that later!

Book recommendation #1!

the girl who circumnavigated

The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (2011)

Actually, I recommend this entire five book series by esteemed author Catherynne M. Valente. Though not a fan of her adult novels, I fell in love with this beautiful book from its first chapter. It follows a girl September who is taken to fairyland and has her heart grow to fill it. She meets a Wyvern, who is part library, saves the Madrid Saturday from his lobster cage, gives away her shadow and travels throughout a land which is always Autumn! A lot more than that transpires which makes reading it all the more wonderful!

What I like so much about this story is how much it broadened my vision and caught my imagination on fire! Valente has a way of painting with words which I find altogether charming. For Autumn lovers I say read the entire series! It is utterly delightful.

“Of course not. No one is chosen. Not ever. Not in the real world. You chose to climb out of your window and ride on a leopard. You chose to get a witch’s Spoon back, and to make friends with a wyvern. You chose to trade your shadow for a child’s life. You chose not to let the Marquess hurt your friend–you chose to smash her cages! You chose to face your own Death, not to balk at a great sea to cross and no ship to cross it in. And twice now you have chosen not to go home when you might have, if only you abandoned your friends.You are not the chosen one, September. Fairyland did not choose you–you chose yourself. You could have had a lovely holiday in Fairyland and never met the Marquess, never worried yourself with local politics, had a romp with a few brownies and gone home with enough memories for a lifetime’s worth of novels. But you didn’t. You chose. You chose it all. Just like you chose your path on the beach: to lose your heart is not a path for the faint and fainting.”