Love Wins

Love Wins

Posted by on Jun 27, 2015 in Life | 0 comments

Today, no Tarot education, friends, or card stories. Just one very excited artist, so happy that yesterday, love won. Portland is a very LGBTQ-friendly town. Huggy. Love-y. Most of us want everyone to find joy and happiness in life. (There are of course the exceptions to the love-y Portlander rule, but, thankfully, I don’t know any of them personally.) We were happy when gay marriage was legalized here, but I can’t say just how thrilled I am to know that now folks can get married all over the U.S., even in my college town of Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Now, I’m not normally one to be public in my discussion of politics, but this is very personal to me, and to many people I care about. Marriage equality is a topic dear to my heart, but for more reasons than just that of wanting my friends to be able to love who they want to love. I grew up with a different kind of bigotry in my life. My mother married my awesome stepfather, whose mom is Panamanian and whose father is African-American. I had friends whose parents stopped letting their kids come over after my parents married, because my dad was black and my mom was white. This was shockingly still considered a no-no by some in the South. My dad was such a healthy, loving source of support in my life. I had an intense mother, and I credit my stepdad for teaching me how to have a sense of humor. He is genuinely one of the kindest men I know. We went through a lot together. My mother and I needed him on an emotional level, and it was total B.S. to me that anyone else thought they had a right to decide that they were wrong for wanting to marry. People’s judgments, both spoken and unspoken, really got to me as a kid. I loved having him as my dad, and I couldn’t understand people’s ignorance. Who were they to say whether he got to be my father in an official capacity? Watching this intolerance over and over again raised me to be very aware of the treatment of others, especially in the departments of love and marriage. So, I guess it’s not surprising, even if I don’t identify as gay myself, I have always been an advocate for the rights of LGBTQ people to marry whomever they love. Love is love. If only we could all be so lucky to love someone and be able to spend our lives with our perfect partner. And, to celebrate love winning, of course I had to re-share “The Lovers” card from The Portland Tarot. It features two wonderful people I love very much. I think they are one of the greatest couples I know. How they started dating is one of my favorite little stories. Yay for love and...

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Creating “The Seven of Mugs” – The David Bowie / Thomas Jerome Newton-Inspired Tarot Card

Creating “The Seven of Mugs” – The David Bowie / Thomas Jerome Newton-Inspired Tarot Card

Posted by on Jun 21, 2015 in Creative Journey, Minor Arcana, Stories | 0 comments

A Great Start to Another Year of Art The card I last completed was The Seven of Mugs (traditionally Cups). I had a pretty ambitious concept for this one that has been stuck in my head for two years, and it ended up taking about seven cards worth of effort to complete. But, for me, it was worth it. It was the project that launched my year and showed me just how far I could go with my art. The Original Concept So, the concept. I had always envisioned that this card would depict a guy watching a series of televisions, in which each presented a scene relating to the concept of the cup. The character would be present in each television, living out that particular story. In the foreground he’d be witnessing the options, and in the background he’d be experiencing them. The concept made me think of a scene played by David Bowie in The Man Who Fell to Earth. The character, Thomas Jerome Newton, sitting in an old gynecological chair, mesmerized by a wall of televisions.  Ground Control to Minor Leo Those close to me know what a huge Bowie fan I am. I got a huge kick out of the idea of paying homage to one of my heroes in a card. However, I was clear I wanted it to be an homage, not a direct rip-off of the idea. I was contemplating who to invite to star in the piece, and when pulling cards on the options I had in mind, it became clear that a particular individual would be a perfect choice. I sent Leo Daedalus, an impresario and performing artist who runs a show called The Late Now, a Facebook message to invite him right before the new year. My husband and I had attended his shows for awhile and loved them. Leo and I met when I was invited to the show a couple of years back to present my 2nd Edition Majors Deck and talk a bit about the project. Since then, Leo and I had gotten to know each other a bit and I sensed he’d get a kick out of being a part of the piece. He responded to my message requesting his participation with an emphatic yes. As our conversation unfolded, he told me something really fun. (By now, I am never surprised by these sorts of happenings.) Apparently, he had been thinking obsessively about the movie The Man Who Fell to Earth for the last month, and especially about the scene I described. He had been wondering how to incorporate an homage to this scene into his own creative endeavors. The Concept & Style Come Together Well, it was a no-brainer that we were destined to collaborate on this piece, and we began with much enthusiasm. It was an auspicious beginning that was an indication of...

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The Beauty of an Improvised Life

The Beauty of an Improvised Life

Posted by on Jun 14, 2015 in Insight, Stories, Tarot Ideas | 0 comments

The central tenant of improv is the phrase, “Yes, and…” I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how this powerful phrase can change our lives, and how well it ties to Tarot. I’m taking my second level of improv classes right now in Portland, at The Brody Theater. (If you don’t know what improv is, it’s a theatrical technique in which people basically make things up as they go, often with hilarious results.) If you’ve ever seen improv theater (think “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” for example), it may look relatively simple at first glance, but the underpinnings are very deep, and it is a challenging art form to master. But, I’m not trying to master it, not right now. I’m just falling deeply in love with what the practice of this art form has to teach me. Improv is a Performance Art; It’s Also About How We “Do” Life. If you are doing improv with a partner, the first rule is to say “Yes” to everything they offer. If they enter the scene and say, “Hi, Linda, it’s so great that we are finally meeting up for coffee!” and you say, “What do you mean meet up for coffee? I thought we were shopping for a new Stairmaster at Super Sports World,” the scene grinds to a halt. You just said, “No” to the creative offer your partner made, which makes it very difficult to proceed. In other words, you overrode their creative offering with your own agenda. Boo, that’s no fun for anyone. How often do we do try to reorder things to the way we think they should be? Tell people their perspective is wrong, before we really get a chance to play in the space they’ve created? In improv, a better way to handle that scene would be to say, “YES, it is so nice that we met up, AND I really need to talk to you about our friend Joe’s Lego addiction. It’s really getting out of hand, I think he needs an intervention.” Or wherever else you are inspired to offer up to add to the scene. Brick by brick (ha!), moment by moment a situation and story evolves—and it takes the absolute deepest presence to truly participate in this act. You can’t get caught up too far in the future, you must stay in the moment to create the scene. I don’t know about you, but I need all the practice I can get to learn to better stay in the moment. What could life be like if we said “Yes” to more? How would the Universe show up to support us if we showed up in a co-creative way by not only saying “Yes” to whatever was offered us, but we also chose to show up and add to that offered experience in a proactive and collaborative way? How would the...

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How You Can Use Tarot to Write the Perfect Email for a Challenging Situation

How You Can Use Tarot to Write the Perfect Email for a Challenging Situation

Posted by on Jun 6, 2015 in Business, Insight, Tarot Ideas | 0 comments

Here’s the scenario: You need to write a tricky email, and fast. But you’re afraid to hit send—something feels off. You’re worried about the repercussions if you don’t get it just right. Or maybe you’re not sure you’re being as clear as you can. Clear communication can be challenging! My major in college was Fine arts, with an emphasis in Graphic Communications. Communication is a big component of all the work I do, whether I’m communicating from a visual place or a content place. So, it’s not surprising that I am always thinking about how to improve the communication process. There’s nothing like clear communication to keep things running smoothly, to move toward our goals, and to make sure our relationships are well nurtured and maintained. Sometimes, when writing an email, communication just flows. There’s really nothing complicated to express. Then there are those days when communication is tricky. If today is that day for you, then I’ve got some great ideas for how to improve your email communication, and how Tarot can help you get it just right. The Many Ways an Email Can Go Wrong… and Right Let’s face it: the content of every e-mail we write is susceptible to the state of our moods, the clarity of our mind on the day, how attentive we are feeling, and assumptions about the signals that we think other people are sending us. Some days, an email can feel like a minefield. Or can turn into one, if we aren’t careful. You know how it is when a communication goes awry. There’s usually some kind of collateral damage to clean up: a misunderstanding, a dropped ball, hurt feelings, a broken relationship. Or you just simply don’t get your desired results: your invitation or request didn’t grab your intended audience enough to get the response you were hoping for. But, if we write consistently good, useful, clearly-communicating correspondences, we will hopefully be blessed enough to never know what difficulty we avoided by taking the time to be careful in our expression. Tricky Email Messages that Need Extra Care I have to write all kinds of emails in my day-to-day. Here are the ones that often end up being the sticky wickets: Communicating with people to organize gatherings Discussing boundary setting around an issue or situation Messages related to developing new business Correspondences around clearing up hurt feelings or misunderstandings Setting expectations with others, in work or personal matters When You Might Send an Email over Making a Phone Call I’ve learned that when you can talk directly with the person—whether on the phone, on Skype, or in person—you’ll usually get the best outcome. However, there can be a number of reasons we might prefer to communicate via e-mail and situations in which it would be wiser to do so. Maybe you are the kind of person who has a hard...

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Heal Your Money Story

Heal Your Money Story

Posted by on May 30, 2015 in Business, Insight | 0 comments

I think a lot about money and business. I work with people every day who are working to grow their business and reach their tribe. The thing I notice most, in myself and in others, is that we all have some work to do on healing our money story. I’m going to offer you a new way to live in your money story. I have to say, my own story has so much in the last year and I believe it can for you, as well. At the heart of business and work is our desire to express a passion, to help others, and to make a living doing it. It’s a pretty simple equation. However, I grew up with a really negative perspective on money, and it’s taken me most of my adult life to heal my relationship with it. I’ll share a few of my hard-won insights with you. Money is not evil. And none of us are evil for wanting it. Money is simply an energy exchange. It’s a beautiful tool that allows me to put my time into something I care about and to then have a common exchange for my efforts that doesn’t require me to trade for goods and services. (Trade is really cool, but honestly, it’s complicated! I love the simplicity of exchanging money.) I really think that our relationship with money can often illustrate inner workings that have very little to do about money itself. For instance, I’ve noticed that my ability to charge more for services over the life of my business has more to do with my inner feelings of my own value than it does my skill and experience. Sure, they’re interconnected, but sometimes I have charged rates far lower than my skill and experience warranted, and overworked myself in the process—that’s where inner value comes into play. To move forward, I’ve had to heal my own feelings of deserving, and to be willing to ask for what I really need and want to live the life I want to live. Think about if you’ve ever stayed in a job where you were underpaid. Or accepted a relationship where there was an unbalanced give and take between you and the other person. How much were your ideas of self worth impacting your choice to move on or request a more equitable condition? The process of asking has evolved for me as my understanding of the truth of money has unfolded. This is the money evolution I’ve noticed in myself… The first inner money monologue I had was, “I want more money.” If you follow the Law of Attraction, the idea is that wanting puts us out of alignment with having money. Wanting doesn’t feel very good. It feels like lack, like not having, and like a fixation on material versus spiritual concerns. Still, after much inner work, I...

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