Tag Archives: love

Win My Heart! and the Winners are…

The original 22 hearts...

Thank you to everyone who entered the contest, read through my blog and waited patiently for the results and answers!

First to answer Question # 1 correctly was Paula with her answer of 9, which meant surfing my entire blog and counting the # of posts with heart images! Paula – Congratulations for your Perseverance!
Q 1 was “How many of my posts include heart images? Not hearts, posts.”

AND
Congratulations to Wendy Fedan for being the first to correctly answer Q 2: “How large did the the first Big Stone Heart measure?” Over 6 feet x 6 feet.

AND
Congratulations to Crowing Crone Joss for her very close guess of 658 stones in answer to Q 3, “Guess the total number of stones in the 22 hearts in the photo.”
The total # of stones in the 22 hearts is 720.

Please provide your mailing address by writing it in a comment, so I can get your prize mailed out to you! (Comments here are moderated and only I will see it, it will NOT be posted).

To everyone else who entered an answer or made a comment, Thank You!

In Sunday’s post I said “see you tomorrow” – and this is a day late. It seems I am very human and my body is reminding me of it. While out and about enjoying the sunshine, I took a very bad fall and landed on my backside ~ hard and creating a brief NoCZ. Taking care of myself included not sitting at the computer for the remainder of the day. So once again, I am sorry for the delay… and I am fine this morning… (Apple cider vinegar and Vitamin C didn’t help with this! LOL!)

Just for fun ~ the small green heart, which I call “Evergreen,” consists of a total 20 stones and contains 2 other heart stones, visible in this close up.

Evergreen


This image also gives you a pretty good idea of the actual sizes of the hearts. The small ones, like this, are 3 1/2″ x 3 1/2″ I will be writing about each heart over the coming weeks, as the heart series continues to unfold… slowly.

May all of your hearts be filled with love and joy!
Namaste ~ StarBear
Copyright 2012 Betsy Lewis

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“Win My Heart” Contest Ends Today!

You have until 6:00 PM EST to enter the “Win My Heart” Contest.
This is fun! I regret not having done something like this sooner… and all is well.

The First of the Series...

The first heart in this series began as an experiment for photographs. After building the First Big Stone Heart on the beach in 2009 (and having it disappear in a storm, as expected, and after the physical death of my beloved big sister not long after) I wanted to find a way to express my love of the beach, of being at the beach, my gratitude for the Healing Waters of Lake Superior and the wonderful people I have shared it with in my life, and not least of all those who share my life! During the relatively short-lived existance of the that heart, which was about two months, a number of friends photographed it, with people they loved standing, sitting, dancing, lying on it… we had a lot of fun with it. I kept thinking about it… how could I make it available to more people – this fun, this love, this joy. Finally, in the summer of 2011, I made the first non-vanishing stone heart. Little did I know…

It took some time to figure out how to make it – and still allow it to look like stones hanging together the way beach stones cluster naturally, piling up on the beach. I watched stones, water and waves working together. I finally realized that as I watched nature at work, I was also learning from her/him, Spirit~ Art imitating nature in ways I never learned in an art class. I have used the lessons learned from watching the waves stack and organize stones… which I cannot yet fully explain in words. It is random and not random. It has to do with size shape, edges, textures, weight, water motion, weather and energy. Some days similar stones form groupings, in breathtakingly beautiful arrangements, some simple, some complex, sometimes mixing colors, sometimes keeping them monochromatic. I watched I listened I worked in the beach studio… I arrived at a possibility.

Stone Washed Heart!

Taking that first non-perishable heart back to the beach, I have taken many photographs of it, letting waves, sand and other stones wash over it. This one heart is NFS. It is in the photo from yesterday, one of the 22. (Contest Hint – you can count the stones in today’s photos.)

It was a simple experiment, which eventually pushed me into making many more, now somewhat refined, simplifying the process (with some missing from photo – already sold and gracing other lives). People saw that first one and started asking for their own! While at first it seemed an artificially contrived device, just for photos, the hearts express own my love for Nature and Joy in Life and are taking on a life of their own. Each stone represents a piece of my heart and the people I love and have loved, different, individual, similar… making a whole and happy heart… seems quite natural, now.

The original was almost washed away as I photographed it… more than once, since in Lake Superior’s big waves it is very light! Retrieving that first heart sometimes meant mad dashes into the Big Lake… laughing and keeping the camera held high. Listening to the rhythm of the waves saved my behind (and camera) on more than one shoot… after awhile one can hear a big wave approaching. That, too, is part of the lake learning or life learning and being connected to it all… listening.

Stones, Bubbles, Sand and Waves...

This work that I do, which some may call play, brought this song to mind today.

The recording is 40 years old, my hearts are young and made from ancient stones.
This work/play is part of my purpose in life, bringing joy to myself and others.
It makes me feel like a Natural Woman, deep down, in my heart.
Makes perfect sense to me… 🙂 Listening, watching, learning, loving… does life get any better than this?

Love Bubbles...

May your life and heart bubble with love… every day is Valentine’s Day!
Namaste ~ In Joy! Star Bear

Related Posts:
Contest
Big Stone Heart ~ Love from Lake Superior
A Little Heart Shared Cross Country
One of my Studios
Beach Work
Beach Dancing
Watching Washing Stones

Happy Valentine’s Day! Win My Heart! Really!

Having fun with Love on Valentine's Day!

To enter the contest read on ~ How to have a little fun on Valentine’s Day…

Valentine’s Day – a day on the Calendar created for Universal Agreement that to have a special person in your life, a lover, a special partner is the thing to do or … you get to feel bad, feel alone, be sad, feel left out, unloved? Blah, Blah, blah… I say Celebrate You and your love for yourself, your friends, your family. Celebrate being, Celebrate breathing, Celebrate this beautiful Earth – and being who you are and able to do what you love.

I get to “do” lunch with a friend I always have fun with, surprise a few other friends, wish my Granddaughter a Happy Birthday and sing a song to her on her phone. I get to go to a job I love and particpate in the NoCZ challenge…. and I get to post the progress I have made on my Stone Heart Series… 22 stone hearts. I loved making these. I loved gathering the stones from the beaches nearby on Lake Superior (on warmer days).
Each stone collected for it’s individual beauty, carefully selecting the stones for each heart, making little relief sculptures, and thinking of people I love or who were at the beach with me as I collected stones. I will love selling them, too…. as a way to share the beauty of stones, the energy of stones, the love the planet gives us in the form of beauty in the simplest things… stones.

Want to win a set of my hearts? Three people can win – just answer one of these questions in the comments:
1. How many blog posts on my blog include heart images? (Hint: the first one tells how and why I made the first Big Stone Heart and the second one is here – How and why I made the second small stone heart.) There are more posts – if you like playing detective, this one is for you. How many of my posts include heart images? Not hearts, posts. In the event of a tie, the first correct answer posted in comments wins.
OR
2. How large did the the first Big Stone Heart measure? (Statistical readers and researchers for facts may love this one.)
OR
3. Guess the total number of stones in the 22 hearts in the photo. Do NOT count the natural heart stones scattered between the hearts. Closest guess to the actual # wins – and in the event of a tie, the first entry posted in the comments wins! (Bean counters and mathamaticians may do well here.)

Please enter only once. One prize will be awarded for each of the 3 questions – for a total of three prizes.
What’s the prize? A set of 4 Heart blank note cards – a $15.00 value – using images from the series of heart stones. Entries must be posted in comments by Thursday, February 16th, 6:00 PM Eastern Standard Time. Winners will be announced and correct answers provided on Monday, February 19th. Good Luck and have fun!

Have fun this Valentine’s Day! Invite a friend to enter the “Win My Heart” contest, too.
There’s more than enough love to share!

After the contest, the stone hearts are for sale. The largest hearts are 6″ x 6″, the medium are 5″ x 5″ and the smallest are 3 1/2″ x 3 1/2 “. Before the week is out I will have individual photos and prices up for each. They are each handcrafted with sculpted finished backs, they are nice to hold in your hands. Feeling the stones feels good. They are wonderful to meditate with, look at, hold, get in touch with nature.

Namaste ~ StarBear

P.S. This is way out of my comfort zone!

Endless Possibilities – NoCZ 2012 ~ Postcard from my Dream

With so many new followers and friends online, sometimes it seems difficult to keep up, stay connected, respond. The NoCZ 2012 Challenge continues, the Kreative Blogger Award wants attention, work calls, the next round art art classes, beginning January 25th, required final planning, and my studio work continues. Ahh, at one time it seemed like overwhelm… and then a blessing appears – a snow day.

Missing in Action? In Action!

Have I been missing in action? Not this time, simply in action in my studio and at the Library. Life is shifting, moving changing… quickly. New artwork in stone, requests for more, people placing holds on pieces yet unfinished! Ideas generating and being manifested as quickly as pieces can dry, more quickly, sometimes.

Yes, I write. Yes, I make up stories. Yes, I am a photographer, artist, writer. Yes, I make art. Yes, I teach. Yes, I learn. Yes, some say I am not focused. Yet, I feel very focused. I have 20 new stone pieces nearly completed… they will be finished this week! They will be photographed and sold. The photographs will morph into greeting cards, magnets, posters. Some will have writing added. Yes, I can and do multi-task. Saying YES!

It may seem as though I am on a heart-kick in my stone pieces, these are simply experiments for larger pieces – stepping stones, baby steps. While I multi task, I find that I must work with my hands, to shape, build, give form to objects. Working with recycled materials to make molds, casting multiples to satisfy a growing group of collectors. No two hearts or circles are alike, each contains a different combination of unique stones, a variety of colors, shapes, sizes. Not unlike people… and some are created while thinking of people I love.
Are they Valentines? For some they are. For me, every day is a Heart Day, a Love Day… and each day goes full circle. My heart and my time, my love of nature, the beach and the beauty of ancient energy, captured in simple shapes and simple stones.

They are for sale – the stone pieces. Prices start at $25.00 USD and go up from there… As I finish each one, I will share them individually and note if they are sold, for sale, with sizes and prices… for now a shot of my wonder filled work table in my studio at home. I have stones, thousands of stones, sorted by color, type, and size – in muffin tins, boxes, plastic drawers. What a gift, living so near the endless source of abundance… I am so blessed… and possibility is endlessly opening new doors.

Oh! and a P.S. to ‘Throw your heart out in front of you and follow it…’
That very day I saw these words on my friend Dennis Fairchild’s Star Struck:
“Follow your heart and take your brain with you.” ~ Play it to the end 🙂

Namaste ~ Star Bear

Related Posts:
Blessings from Marge

Celebrating Life ~ Sharing Joy

The day was September 18th, a Sunday evening, after time making new friends, re-meeting neighbors and friends, attending a 2-day event, sharing a meal with friends, simple pleasures in life. All of that on the heels of a visit from my favorite (and only) son, and numerous other wonderful house guests over recent weeks, working at  a job I love… and visitors to my studios…

Joy stick... in the studio

Sometimes there is more Joy in my life than I can contain and sometimes I just cannot contain myself. Sometimes it just bursts out in song, or dance or making something.
This day, and after the past 3 weeks, it was just too much to contain… so I gave it to the Lake, the Wind, the Sky. The Wind, the Sky, the Lake, the Light, and the camera all conspired to support sharing my Joy.

Joy~filled Light

Sometimes words don’t work for me. Making things works for me ~ so I offer you Joy and Gratitude for the simple joys in life.

Joyful Breeze

Namaste ~ Starbear

Remembering 9/11 and Happy Brains

2,987 (?) lives lost, families devastated, rescuers injured – “collateral damage”.
10 years later, how many more lives lost in wars and global conflict, in revenge? Over what? Water, oil, money, who has the bigger stick? The links below are what I wrote then. I still believe there are better solutions, more creative and life supporting solutions. In honor of the lives lost on 9/11, I ask this question – Isn’t the definition of insanity doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting different results?
“When will they ever learn?” from “Where have all the flowers gone?” sung here by Pete Seeger.
The good news – 400 trees planted at ground zero and a peaceful park plaza on many acres in NYC.

In the face of adversity, I choose joy. This weekend I am attending a Tele-conference called Choosing Joy , hosted by Cathleen Harvey Spacil, and created for people with brain injuries and mental illness. Brain Be Happy  is about finding joy in every situation and the choices we make. In my humble opinion, those judged mentally ill, brain damaged, may have better, more creative, healthier solutions than politicians. There is even helpful information for veterans and soldiers who have suffered brain trauma available on her site.

Where have all the flowers gone? – Cathleen is a flower blooming brilliantly in her life, my life and on the internet.
Yes, my brain is happy – and it makes these energy connections, leaps between the concept that if we are each at peace in our lives and hearts, there would be less global conflict. There would be more time and money and happy people available for finding creative solutions to caring for the earth and the wonderful people on it. More freedom to express kindness, compassion, love, with simple, elegant solutions.

These are the links from my “blog” 10 years ago.
Mourning Poem
Deepak Chopra  – Thoughts on Peace
My Personal Experience  –  A Quiet Voice
There are other links on these pages , as well.

Things are changing, some minds are changing. There are quiet, joyful voices singing in harmony. Peace to you this day, may your heart be filled with peace – and joy.

Namaste ~ Star Bear

Post-a-bit! Post-a-day 2011 ~ Time Matters

Taking a month long hiatus, cutting down on computer time in order to be with people in my life. My old computer is being renewed soon, updated to provide faster, better access, more memory. This is thanks to my wonderful offspring. House guests started descending in mid-August, a very special gift out here in the boonies… and while torn about blogging vs. not, I intend to enjoy each and every visitor to the max.

Ahh!  Fresh Air, Quietude, Blueberry Snacks, Wildlife - Char's on vacation!

NTC - on a ridge overlooking Lake Superior ~ Ahh! Fresh Air, Quietude, Blueberry Snacks, Wildlife - Char on vacation!

Last week, it was my friend Charlotte visiting, and I was delighted to be able to share a day hike on the North Country Trail with her. This week, my favorite (and only) son is here. At the same time, I have to work at my day job, produce artwork for an upcoming sale and prep for fall classes. A single blog post can take 3-4 hours with my limited access and slow computer (and sometimes perfectionism), so from now until September 21st I shall continue be more hit and miss than usual. Still taking lots of images, and thinking of my devoted readers.
Playing on the trail, taking time to smell the pines, taking leaps of Faith and growing… time to live more offline, for now. It is simply a matter of time… and loving the company I keep. Finding balance, yet again. I turned 66 on August 17th, and realized that with only 33 more years to live, it is a matter of time! 🙂 Time Matters!

Living on the Edge and Taking Leaps of Faith - Yes!

May your days be filled with leaps of faith, miracles, and love for life in the other real world of the senses.

Thank you for your patience and kindnesses, always!

Related Posts:

Megwitch ~ Starbear

Happy Mountains

Dancing with Friends in the Mountains

Dancing in Wine Country Mountains

Looking for mountains ~ In California, with people I love, I thought these were lost, and now, because of this photo challenge, found. Not only did I find the images, but in doing this I recovered one of the happiest loving memories of my life. I forgot about some of the mountains I’ve visited, not the people I love.
When I’m in the mountains, I cannot see their magnificence, their height, appreciate their full beauty. It is only seen from a distance. Maybe loving is like that? I don’t see people’s full beauty, their magnificence if I get too close?
I visited these mountains, danced in these mountains with my two best friends, whom I love deeply and always.

May your day be filled with mountains of love, up close and from a distance.

Namaste ~ Star Bear

Between Days

Today is a “between” day… the day between Father’s Day and Summer Solstice. I am grateful for having had my dad in my life for the first 19 years. He encouraged my art, my persistence, my patience, my curiosity. He taught me to be outgoing, fun, friendly. He laughed with us, played with us. He took me to beaches and horse barns and events. I loved him dearly. I know he is always watching, helping, loving and supporting me, even though he left this physical life long ago.

Tomorrow is Summer Solstice. That, too is a special day, marking time on nature’s clock… I am taking tomorrow off from my “job” to do my real work. To go to the studio… to dance, to live, to celebrate life! And I will not be alone…

This post is from last summer and it speaks for me still:

About the Labyrinth ~ and how I work.
Many questions are asked about the artwork I produce and how I work. Taking time to answer a few, let’s use the Labyrinth as a starting point.

First, someone asked,
How did you find so many stones to match in color, shape and size?
The short answer: Keep my eyes open, go where there are a lot of stones.
The long answer: I think of the beach near my home as Creator’s art supply store, full of wonderous materials for making art and finding beauty. With 31 MILES of wilderness beach at my feet, it is rich and abundant, filled with colors and shapes. Lake Superior’s beaches offer some of the most colorful stones on the planet. The inventory rotates with storms and wave actions, thus it changes regularly. Often, I think of the beach as “my studio,” a wide open space, full of creativity and a place to “play” with ideas.

Where do your ideas come from?
Short answer: Creator, being inspired by a word, a group, or an experience. Ideas flow easily when I am in touch with Joy.
Long answer: The week I created the Labyrinth, I had set aside time to celebrate the completion of Denise Linn’s 28 week Soul Coaching course. There were 700+ participants from all over the world. When I want to fully connect spiritually, I go to the “beach studio,” where the energy flows freely from all directions of the universe. It is where I meditate and express gratitude for all that I am blessed with. As part of this day’s celebration, I knew that Denise was in California, offering a celebration ceremony for the entire group, and we had been told of the date and time. It was during this time I went to the beach.
The Labyrinth was not what I had “planned” on doing this day. It just “came” to me. It was cold, windy, and I was wearing snowmobile clothes to be warm in the wind in April. A “perfect” day at the beach!

A small part of "my beach studio"

It's easy to find materials at this art supply store!

I had planned to simply meditate and perhaps build something small, yet monumental, as a momento of closure for the group and my participation. Searching for large stones to build something simple, I began once again to notice all of the beautiful flat round stones around me. It felt as if each stone represented a participant in the course, and they each ”spoke” to me with color and shape. As I gathered stones, I still had no idea what form they would take. Sitting with a small pile of stones and rubbing my hands together, the North wind was freezing! I had to get moving to stay warm.

Then I realized the wind was my ally! It was creating fresh canvases for me to “draw” on. A hawk feather blew near – Hawk – my personal keen eyed helper. I placed the hawk feather upright in the sand, where I first began to build… and it blew away while I was gathering more stones. It only blew a few feet away, to a better canvas…! I stood the feather up once more in the sand, as a blessing to the group and a sign from Creator – build here – do this!
And the labyrinth took form… each stone placed, guided by commitment, inspiration, joy and gratitude for 28 weeks of participation with a group of people I’ve never even met in person, but with whom I was strongly connected. The Labyrinth emerged, evolved after that, effortlessly. As each stone was carefully placed, it was as if I was taking another step in the Labyrinth – Walking Stones.
When I was finished, I looked for the Hawk Feather – it had gone with the wind!

How do you get the stones into such a perfect circle, spiral?
Short answer: Practice, practice, practice.
Long answer: I decided, at age nine, that I wanted to learn to draw a perfect circle without a compass. I spent weeks, one summer, practicing every day. I drew on newpapers, discarded envelopes, on the backs of letters. I drew with pens, pencils, crayons, chalk on sidewalks, drew in the dirt with sticks. (Today I would probably be carted off and diagnosed with OCD.) I was determined to be able to draw…better! Learning this skill has served me well. I can draw almost anything, with anything, on anything!
Did you draw a spiral first in the sand?
I did not draw the Labyrinth. I can “see” the shape I want and place things where they need to be to form that shape. In this case, I created a “drawing” using stones as dots… connecting the dots, connecting the people, connecting energy…

How long did it take to build the labyrinth?
Short answer: A few hours, an afternoon.
Long answer: My whole life. Learning to draw, learning to express myself in visual form is an ongoing process of practice, learn, do, be and practice some more. I “borrowed” part of this answer from Alexander Calder, sculptor, inventor of the mobile, the stabile and an artist with a great sense of humor! In an interview, someone asked him how long it took for him to create a simple line drawing on a paper napkin. They had seen him draw it in a few seconds, but when asked how long it took him to make such a beautiful drawing, he answered “A lifetime.” He was in his seventies, I believe, at the time. His answer helped me realize that we bring our selves, our life experiences, our sense of humor, our love for people, AND a lifetime of learning art skills to the making of art. The more I have developed my skills, the easier they are to use.
The Labyrinth continues as a project. I will continue to watch it and take more images of it, to see it in different light.

Why do you do this kind of art?
Short answer: It inspires me and it’s fun work. (It’s also how I make my living.)
Long answer: It is environmentally friendly art. Using what nature offers, I build, I draw, sometimes I paint, using the colors of the stones as a palette. It is a way to be active and outdoors, moving, thinking, planning. It requires that I be cognizant of the patterns of weather, time of day, movement of the sun and light. It engages my senses and sensibilities, fully, and time clocks become meaningless. Noticing the sun, the light become reminders of time to rest. (Oh, and my sometimes growly stomach!)

Where the Labyrinth lives - for now!

6 Weeks Later

Then, later, I photograph, over time, letting nature change the image. Different times of day, different light, makes a whole different picture. The wind moves the sand, creating a variety of textures – changes the canvas. I love watching these changes, often very subtle, sometimes very slow. The Labyrinth still exists, at this remote beach, and in an ongoing series of photographs.

Questions? Please ask… there may be an answer.
Comments? Please do!
Thank you for asking, reading, visiting, enjoying!

Betsy Lewis

Post-A-Day 2011 ~ Postcard from Me AND My Dream

Postcard from Me & My Dream


Have you missed me? I have missed you, too!
Sorry to be MIA!
Missing in Action – Action being the operative word…
Loving my environment
Using it without causing harm
Making Art – Environmental Art
Recycling
Making plans
Giving and receiving
Taking care of myself and people I love.
Learning, always learning.

15 days in the studio, 15 days in my life, 15 Days of Miracles… While Valentine’s Day is a date on the calendar, every day is for loving.
It is winter, I am StarBear and sometimes require hibernation, slow breathing, slowing heart rate, loving my work, going with the flow of seasons and cycles. Each day building on another to build a foundation.

If you missed me, I am sorry, please forgive me, thank you, I love you…
And while I was away you were in my heart, not frozen, melting in sunshine or rain, and always here.

While I usually find something I want to change or eliminate in my photos, this one is unedited, unchanged. It is my real heart, my true love, radiating in sunshine… and just a tiny part of a series of ice sculpture/photos – just a tiny portion of what I have been up to for the past two weeks. Missing posts, moving forward, living my dream.
“They” say make hay while the sun shines, I say make ice when it is cold enough.
Coming soon to an Art Gallery near you!

Namaste ~ starbear

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