Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The Artist's Life: August Garden and YouTube Videos as a Creative Medium

A Japanese cucumber takes to the fence
This year, the tomatoes are surprisingly spare in their production. I was looking forward especially to the Cherokee Purples, which are so delicious. Six or so tomatoes on my one Cherokee Purple plant--ah well.

Even the cherry tomatoes are a bit stingy, well that is except for the chaotic mass of cherry tomato plants that seeded themselves from last year. They are forming a little tomato jungle in a section of the garden, outside of tomato cages and supports.

I do have some nice squash plants adventuring up fences and along the ground--kabocha, zucchini and delicata from the look of them. 

It's time to get the autumn garden going and yesterday I planted some swiss chard, kale and arugula seeds in a big raised bed.

It's August already. The summer is flying on much too quickly. But so it is.  Fortunately, we still have a bit more of it to enjoy.

Speaking of enjoyment,  I find that I rather enjoy making YouTube video clips.

I know that public speaking is at the top of the list of fears for many people. I used to be in that camp, but not these days. I don't recall exactly when things changed in that regard. But they did. I love public speaking and performing in general. To me, it's a form of creative play and expression that is invigorating and delightful.

Hostas are blooming and it's time to clean up the beds, too
The sunflower next to the compost area  is tall and happy
The process of creating YouTube clips gives me an opportunity to practice performing, and gives me feedback on body language, gestures and what works or needs change or improvement.

In its own way, it's like growing a garden.

With the help of my friend Anne, I recently created three YouTube video clips.

One video clip introduces my new book Songs of the Inner Life and talks about the healing power of memoir and life review. Two of the clips focus on A New Wrinkle, our musical revue on aging.

In those clips, I share snippets from several of the songs, including The Silver Tsunami, Sex after 60 and Hip Hop Elder's Rant. The videos are available at the Sage's Play website and I invite you to take a look at them. They are not perfect, but they are a lot of fun.

Fortunately or unfortunately, I am not a perfectionist. I do enjoy refining and improving whatever it is I am working on though. So I expect that as I continue with my YouTube explorations, my offerings will be even more fun both for me and for the viewer.

Today, I am heading over to Skylark Assisted Living to conduct my monthly group, Adventures in Aging. I plan to lead a deep relaxation experience with some music in the background. And of course, we will talk together, too.

I joined the Ashland Chamber of Commerce recently! It's part of my effort to become more locally visible and to make new friends and supporters in the community.

I did a book reading and signing at the library in town recently. That was lovely. My friend Neville, who now lives in Hawaii, arrived for it and stayed for a few days with me.  One day, we drove up Shale City Road to the Grizzly Peak trail, where wild daisies, lupine and grasses made the hillsides very beautiful.

 Composer Laura Rich and I had a wonderful meeting with Ilana Rubenfeld, who created the Rubenfeld Synergy Method. Ilana was a conductor earlier in her life, and has considerable musical background and skill. We met with her to talk about A New Wrinkle. As we left, she gave us a copy of her book The Listening Hand. I just finished reading it. A wonderful book--what a marvelous career she has had helping others heal. While she may be retired from that work (after training many others to carry it on) she brings all that experience and humor to her current life. She is a really vivid, enjoyable presence.

I am happy that she likes us and our musical revue, and am looking forward to more contact with her as time goes on and we get closer to production of the revue.

Ciao for now, dear reader. Hope your summer is blessing you with joy, relaxation, insights.

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