A Spirituality series, Printmaking 2014

After spending a summer exploring spirituality in Boulder, CO and being relaunched back into conservative mid-Missouri, small-town life, I needed to find an outlet for myself to stay in touch with the part of myself that I had found in Boulder. I decided to focus my Visual Communications IV course on advancing my career by focusing my projects on branding and cannabis, and reserve my fine arts class, Printmaking II, for exploration of spirituality. For the series, I was inspired by new knowledge I was gaining out if interest in yoga, energy medicine, soul travel, consciousness, meditation, and self compassion. The process of creating each piece gave me a chance to analyze the complex ideas that I had generated and solidify my understanding of those ideas so that I could communicate the idea to others both visually and verbally. 

I Will Live Fearlessly from A Spirituality series, Printmaking Poster 2014

The autonomic nervous system's automatic response to threats seems to be at the root of all problems, creating relentless and constant fear within. It's a biological survival method, but now that we have secured ourselves at the top of the food chain, that reaction is triggered when we are threatened by insignificant things all day long, causing fear to consume our lives. Some people are just better equipped to deal with that fear than others; older souls know better how to control these reactions. Our mind is also what keeps us from pure consciousness; it drags us away from the present moment, the now. Your mind can terrorize itself with what ifs, buts and maybes, keeping you from your potential and your best self. 

This poster was inspired by the following words that I recite each morning as a part of my energy medicine routine:

This is a new day, one I have never experienced before. I will stay in the present and enjoy each and every moment while expanding my memory and increasing my intuition.

I love myself unconditionally and I will live fearlessly. I will recognize the divine in myself, and all others, and all things. I am magnificent. I will show kindness and compassion to myself and to others. 

Thank you 60 trillion cells for keeping me healthy, each and every one of you. 

Using the linoleum block I had cut from my Self Compassion piece from A Spirituality series, I created this four-run (2 linoleum runs, 1 letterpress run, 1 screen print run) poster in my Printmaking II course as a reminder for myself and others to have the courage to live fearlessly. The rough, energetic hand drawn "lessly" conquers the word "fear" by overlapping the blue text in gold ink. Because the ink is transparentized, you can also see the background image through the blue text when up close, a beautiful effect. 

Run 1: Full ink linoleum with hand-mixed ink / Run 2: Reversed ghost of Run 1 / Run 3: Letterpress with hand-mixed ink / Run 4: Screen print with metallic gold

I Will Live Chakras Letterpress Coasters 2014

Modern chakra symbol designs to remind living entails dedicating attention to each area of life. 

Celestial Hand Woodblock Print 2014

This wood cut was found for me by a couple of friends from class when they went to a print fair. I asked for something celestial, and they found it. I also used this as the illustration in my haiku book to remind the importance of thanking yourself and your body every day in order to stay healthy. 

Mountain Pose Linoleum Cut 2014

Inspired by my favorite yoga pose to date, Mountain Pose. The pose is grounding and strengthening, and I always find myself imagining that I'm as sturdy and balanced as those mountains I found myself so enamored with in Colorado while I practice this pose. 

The High Priestess, 1-color Wood Cut 2014

Before leaving for Boulder, I had a tarot card reading in which the High Priestess card came up, and the individual doing the reading described the card as a representation that I will soon have everything all figured out; that I'll be on top of it all. The card really shaped my perception of the coming months, and I became disappointed as I felt further and further from what the card had predicted for me. This piece helped me work through feelings of anxiety, fear, and disappointment as I came to realize the underlying lesson of it all: patience. Upon the realization, I began finding myself better understanding the card's meaning and how it applies to my life. 

This piece takes elements of traditional tarot cards of the High Priestess and replaces them with meaning and significance in my own life. For example, the woman depicted is sitting in lotus instead of at a chair to represent the importance of yoga in connection with meditation for myself. The smoke coming from her right hand represents my inherent need to create as well as my connection to cannabis. Other elements in the piece also connect the history of the card to my own life, and the wood cut process also reflects the look and feel of historical tarot cards.