Category Archives: Goals

Adult Coloring Books

Here’s a sneak peek at what I’ve been up to lately: creating coloring books for adults. I’ve been obsessed. I told friends recently that I used to wonder how I could make a living by sitting around and doodling. While it of course takes a little more than that, it’s what I’ve been feeling lately. I love finding something that comes naturally to me and running with it.

This is a snapshot of a page that is under consideration for the first book:

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As I work out the steps on this adventure I wonder what people like. The photo shows a really detailed page. While I love it, I also know that people have told me I’m crazy for the detailed work in which I find comfort. I have a variety of complexities to choose from and am considering giving up the really detailed ones but, we’ll see.

I’m almost halfway done with the first book, and am planning two more, all three to be published in November, most likely towards the end of the month.

Are you a colorist? Do you love the adult coloring books? What are your preferences? I’ve started a facebook group, Lori Greenberg’s Coloring Connection, to share colored designs of the free pages I give away each week for download, and to follow me in this process. Why not pop over and check it out. There is a free page from this past week and another will be posted tomorrow.

How I Meditate

fb160503a1Meditation is a personal thing. Once you have the basics it’s fun to be creative. My intention is to let my thoughts calm and open my awareness. So when I sit in this new routine of mine, I allow myself to take the necessary steps to get to that place.

I do the obvious things of sitting quietly in an upright position, often with palms up and a straight spine. Eyes closed and my intention focused on a point behind my forehead. I then start breathing calmly and deliberately. I have learned that on a good day it takes about five minutes for me to hit the place of calm where my active thoughts start to fade, or at least get more quiet.

During the beginning when my thoughts are very active and vying for my brain-space I do a few things to get past it … all of them gentle and not bossy towards myself. One thing is to practice focusing on an imaginary point behind my forehead. If I notice my eyes clenching and actually trying to look at it, I try to relax them. Some people see colors, or a point of light, I often see the image of eyes. No surprise there. Sometimes I repeat a phrase (mantra or intention) in my mind. Sometimes I’ll hum a ethereal tune repeatedly.

Lately I’ve been a little obsessed with the pineal gland, the place you’re really trying to focus on which is about six inches back from your forehead, and associated with the third eye. So, sometimes I’ll have a little chat with mine. I’ll welcome him to the day, ask him what we’d like to see today, maybe give him a little virtual massage and envision him going out and seeing things.  Sometimes I’ll visualize myself at the end point of a goal that I’m trying to reach and put out to the universe to help me get there without focusing on the steps in between. I believe in the power of my fantasy world and talking to parts of my body when they’re in a state of tension or discomfort. It can help alleviate it just by acknowledging it’s there rather than battling against it or denying it.

But anyway, after I have my little chat and greeting I’ll also talk a little bit to the thoughts that are coming. I encourage them to come, and then go, come and then go. Not trying to fight them off or ignore them but giving them their space because they are the natural function of the brain, and allowing them to pass without dwelling on them or going deeper into more thoughts. As a friend said, watching the river flow by.

That’s about the first five minutes. The I go back to my focusing on a point and letting my mind quiet. I might notice aches in my muscles or a tight joint, which can be distracting. I breathe and imagine the breath going to that place, again, acknowledging that it is there without cursing it most times that allows it to subside. Same with itches. I do move slightly if my foot starts to fall asleep which happens to me sometimes. And sometimes I’ll scratch an itch. The idea though is to not judge yourself. Some say you have to sit perfectly still and that is preferred but if you do move, don’t get distracted by it. Just do it and move back into letting it come and go.

Sometimes I only sit for about 10 minutes but try to aim for 20. I used to set a timer but I’ve stopped that and go as long as I can. Again, no judgment on myself if it’s a short sitting day. It’s all good.

Things change, but I’ll still forecast the future.

I won’t so much as forecast the future but I will continue to tell you what I plan to do, even though it seems to change as fast as I declare it.

Times past I would state goals and desires and like many, not reach many of them; especially the big ones. That used to bother me and has often kept me from calling the field into which I intend my home run ball to land. Fear of failure, or looking like one in someone else’s eyes.

lori greenberg glass beadWell. No more. I once read that you must cast a lot of nets to snag one big fish. Or something like that. Not everything is a success, nor does everything keep your attention. I will cast a lot of nets and pursue those that keep a tight line and continue to reel me in.

Just this last week I posted on facebook that I needed to get down to business and figure out how to turn my micro mosaics into complex murrini. This idea/decision/desire was brought about by many things converging in the last couple weeks.

First off, the interest that my work drew at the Bead Bazaar at the Gathering by multiple boro workers walking the show. I caught reactions of awe and encouragement to delve deeper into that area.

Second, a nice gentleman who got it. Really got it. With a strong European accent he pointed out to me the nuances of my Reclining Buddha piece. How the background colors were broken up by subtle swirls of complementary color, the decorative spirals made out of solid stringer, the different length of murrini chips, the outlining. He actually saw what I intended, that which most others don’t, even if they mostly get it. He then proceeded to tell me I should make it into a murrini pull and that the time invested in my piece isn’t worth the price I ask/get. He might have also been the one that suggested sending it to China to mass produce into a murrini but I politely tuned that part out.

And then, as I contemplate this changing world of glass, glass beads and the way in which they’re presented and sold I am continually reminded of the marble and murrini worlds out there with their network of collectors and it starts to seem even more appealing. It sounds like a brilliant idea…like it’s something new to get in to. I’m gung ho!

lorigreenberg glass beadAnd then I start to look into it more. I follow some links from a friend pointing towards who is doing the stringer stack method, other murrini makers, methods, history, etc. All very very impressing. I don’t doubt that I could do it given time and lots of practice.

Last night it hit me though. Something about researching others’ work and methods felt like copying. Not that I’d be copying outright, but just the mere fact that I was looking to others in order to move myself seemingly forward seemed like a step back at this point in my development and the development of my body of work.

What if I didn’t follow that path that seemed so obvious and more safe? What if I continued doing what I was doing and developed my own work and style more? Who is to say that my pieces, one offs, detailed and intricate, wouldn’t start fetching collectors and be a part of rejuvenating the tradition of micro mosaic glass art? Why go and do what is already on the rise because it seems to be the gravy train?

So, after my huge declaration of delving into cold built murrini making it is clear to me. (for today anyway). Continue to follow that drum beat in my chest. The one that continually leads me back to my core desire to be a driving force, to be different, to leave something behind that says, “I did that. And I did it on my own.” In 25 years I want to be remembered as someone who contributed something, who forged forward.

Ask me again tomorrow what that means and if I’m still on that track.

One thing I do know is that I will continue to seek the drum beat of my heart and when I start to veer off the path towards what sells or what people may expect of me, I will do my best to come back to that which makes my soul sing, no matter what it may be nor what I may have declared previously.

Anyone care to join me?