Sunday, August 29, 2010

Another Day of Stones and Spirals

In the studio, 
still journeying with spirals, 
circles and 

Thoughts of tree rings
and raked gravel in a Zen garden.

Crop circles, 
Pamela suggested, 
finger prints. 

Maybe I'll mount this one on wood....

Piles and piles on my table. 
Some I like, 
some will 
not survive 
the harvest. 

Different papers do different things. 
I think I've found my favorite. 

Re-arranged a shelf of inspiration, 
after a visit to 
my parents' house. 
Yet more 
they are passing on 
in preparation  
to move far away....

Dad found a collection 
of my most precious stones
 from a secret pebble 
beach in Greece. 

Washed and tumbled 
by turquoise water, 
rolled back and forth. 
I can feel them moving under me.

Memories flood back when I feel the 
smooth skin of polished stones - 
Sea-filled caves with blue-green
prisms of light, slight taste of salt, 
warm tomatoes, 
and fetta.  

I remember most of the  stones quite well, 
though I have not seen them in 
many years. 

Stones in the garden, 
carried from near and far, 
where a 
contemplates the 

Golden hues 
of late summer 
grace the forest clearing, 
Small white skinny-winged moths 
soak in the warm sun, 
and large, black crickets 
scramble about when I move 
a pot here and there. 


Dreaming Woods said...

i should someday send a stone from Finland to you. there are a seashore in north where you can find stones which looks like speckled bird eggs! i have never been there, but i hope i shall someday.

the stones from Greece looks beautiful!! and the paintings of your also.


Penny Berens said...

Ah, I can just feel those stones from Greece. I have collections of stones from everywhere I've been and I love them.
Thank you for sharing this lovely post.

A mermaid in the attic said...

Mmmm, tree-rings and time! I have some stones from Greece, mostly from Naxos I think, that look exactly like yours. I also spent an amazing afternoon on the island of Iona in Scotland, with a friend who was living there at the time, lying on a west facing beach in the afternoon sun (because lying was the only way to keep out of the biting wind!), to find small (and some not so small) green and yellow stones that were truly magical. Such a pain to bring home so many rocks in my backpack, but oh SO very worth it!

grace Forrest~Maestas said...

valerianna, it's been a little while since i visited here, and
what is striking is a very palpable
shift in energy....this new work,
these stone seeds are vibrating
at a very high level, yes?
i like it a LOT, i will be
revisiting these recent pages many
times, in effort to see all that
there is to see. thank you for

Unknown said...

Beautiful post - I love seeing the greek stones. someday you need to come visit us and we will go to the rainbow rocks beach. happy day, sus

Anonymous said...

hi i've just hopped over from spirithelpers, nice place you have here:) i have pebbles from greece too..from over 20 year ago and as beautiful as ever. that spiral would look fantastic mounted on the wood.

Valerianna said...

Delila - how I;d LOVE to get a stone from Finland! Though I visited there once, I didn't pick up a stone. Close to my father's family's homeland of Latvia, I did, get a stone from a beach in Riga... Speckled bird's egg stones sound amazing.

Penny - I love that I often know where a particular stone came from, as in these, I remember the hidden cove with the cave and so loved the small stones there....

Mermaid - yes, Naxos isn't too far... and yes, crazy. The customs guy asked me if I had stones in my luggage, kidding, though of course I had to answer, YES, MANY! To which he looked at me sort of askew.... A friend brought me one of those stones from Iona... wonder where that is?

Grace, look forward to your many visits to go back through the postings... and, one thing that is VERY different is that I am actually MAKING art right now. Its been so busy with grant writing and other things that I wasn;t working at all most of the spring and summer. Finally I had had it and just started scheduling studio time in addition to the other things. Phew... its good to be engaged again and feel like an artist!

Susan - rainbow rocks beach, that sounds intriguing!

Valerianna said...

GreenWhisper- thanks for hopping over... and, yes, I think I will mount that spiral on wood, thanks for the feedback!

summertime dreams said...

Your inspiration wall is just that, inspirational! Can't wait till I'm no longer renting and can paint/hang things on my walls!
I love the starfish. What is the secret to keeping a starfish like that??

Valerianna said...

summertime dreams - I do love owning my place so I can really do what I want. I'm not sure what the secret to keeping the starfish like that - maybe drying it in the sun when one firsts finds it, I imagine. My grandfather was a marine biologist and we had all kinds of things like that hanging around. My father gave me the starfish when I last visited my parents'.

Tammie Lee said...

to me, it sounds as though stones are your friends, you remember them after meeting them. Not everyone can feel the spirit in a stone.

illustration poetry said...

i like that little salamander... can i pet him???

ps: now i believe that you are a faery!

Valerianna said...

Tammie Lee- yes, definitely... I have always felt the spirit in all things, and stones are special. I wrote a song about my experience with them... someday I'll share my music, I realize there's a whole part of me I have yet to share here in blogland!

Sympathy - those little salamanders are quite sweet and slow and pretty casual about being touched, though they aren't too interactive!

(Karen) Lisa Daley said...

When very young, I drew spirals all over everything, constantly, for years. I couldn't stop, it was like I was trying to remember something. Yours are beautiful - they look striking on the wall as a grouping. And your stones.....ahhhhhh.... Was wonderful your parents saved them. Hope the move goes well and you'll still be able to visit often enough.

Jasmine said...

Your studio space looks so inviting. My love of pebbles has been rekindled by the geology of Anglesey. There is a nature reserve near me where almost every pebble has quartz running through it. I love it there.

Windsongs and Wordhoards said...

I love the sepia, parchmenty colour beneath the spirals - makes it feel like something ancient, and with such a primal symbol it could come from almost any time back into pre-history, except for the wetness of the ink which I love too.
I think for me that's why this series of work is so compelling, its speaking on a kind of ancestral, primordial level, back deep into the human sub-conscious...

I too have collections of beautiful stones in burr-wood bowls, as well as animal skulls on shelves, special feathers - especially my beloved buzzard feather, fossils, seedheads and flints...

Funny how so many of us share these fascinations with the wild :)

Acornmoon said...

your stones and spirals take me back to the West coast of Ireland. I think spirals were some of the earliest patterns by the settlers there.

Reading Tea Leaves said...

Your stones are beautiful Valerianna - what stories they could tell. The spirals are fascinating I love the way they shape and inform your work. Such tantalising glimpses into your studio and the things that inspire you. The buddha is lovely.


ArtPropelled said...

Oh I do love this post Valeri. My huge stone collection holds many memories. I can remember days, holidays, trails, rivers, beaches, fragrances, sounds, sensations, conversations .... I remember watermelon days at the river too.

Jo Potter said...

Wonderful post and very peaceful too.
Your studio looks great. I can see you are a gatherer of natural items. You have a lovely collection of wood, stones, and other magical artifacts.
The markings on pebbles fascinate me as well!
I feel that the golden light of late summer is the best time of year.
Thank you for a beautiful Zen post.

Valerianna said...

Karen - love that line "it was like I was trying to remember something", that's kind of how I am feeling as I draw these - that there is a conversation going on between my body and soul with the spiral symbol.... and the conversation wants to go on and on....

Jasmine - sounds like a lovely place to collect stones... and must have lots of quartz amplifying energy in the land there, too...?

Carrie - its an interesting body of work to create for
so many reasons... the ancient, primordial and also, as I wrote above, some important symbolic language speaking to my body which I am presently addicted to!

acornmoon - I love those ancient spirals from Ireland... the Newgrange carved stones fascinate me. There is just such simplicity and complexity both in a spiral.

Jeanne- thanks, I do also love seeing glimpses into studios, so I try to post my work table and collections now and again, its such a personal and almost intimate thing to see inside another's creative space...

ArtPropelled- watermelon days by the river... its so hot right now I've just salivated over that line! And, yes, stones such necessary familiars in my life.

joanne - a funny story from when I moved here 7 years ago... I sent the movers around to the back of my apartment building to collect the huge piles of large stone in milk crates. They looked at me as if I was kidding, but, as I was paying them, they moved them, thinking I was crazy, I'm sure! And they didn't know that many of the boxes they were loading into the truck were also full of stones, bones, nests and feathers.

Sweetpea said...

Had a nice little wander around your blog...feels good over here...think I could get a lot of work done within such a fine studio :>]]

Lovely to have you visit over on the path today. Seems to be bunches of us smitten with owl-nesses of one sort or another!

rivergardenstudio said...

Oh! What a glorious post! Your desk, your inspirations, your nature... all of it circling around your studio, your art. I can feel how much you love your space here. I am spellbound... roxanne

Valerianna said...

Sweetpea- glad you came for a visit here! And, yes, I love my studio, though I need desperately to put in new windows and doors, buy a new heater, and insulate around windows. Once winter comes, its old heater and leaky windows make heating it a bit hard. Its top priority, though, to do as much caulking as I can this fall to be warm in winter!

Roxanne - what a lovely and enthusiastic comment! Thanks!

Emily's Moose - Karolina Kubikowska said...

I love your world and imagination,and your beautiful studio reminds me one that I'm dreaming of for myself in the future.


Valerianna said...

Karolina - good dreaming to you! A nourishing studio is really quite supportive... as well as the land surrounding it, for me anyway... thanks for stopping in and becoming a follower, welcome to RavenWood.

stephanie dosen said...

your spiral drawings leave me utterly breathless.
several times lately i have seen small smooth
stones in the park when i am walking past the
deer and i think of you. you must be a stone
whisperer. i just know it ♥ :)

Valerianna said...

faerie finder - its surprising to me the amount of enthusiasm about these spiral drawings... I'm am certainly following a deep and mysterious impulse, but that it translates is surprising!

And, yes, you've found me out, I am a stone whisperer, love that!

Anonymous said...

Beautiful! And a lovely studio to work in as well.

Happy day to you,

Lucky Dip Lisa said...

My friend dropped me a comment to tell me to come and see these ink spirals. I love them and they really speak to me. I can imagine your delight in finding these gems hidden in nature.

That link is to some circles I did, they are probably what made my friend think of me when she saw yours!

I think we will enjoy each others art, I will be back to see more of yours!