~ Let your happiness take flight ~
~ Let your happiness take flight ~
“Every artist writes his own autobiography.” -Havelock Ellis
“An artist cannot fail; it is a success to be one.” -Charles Horton Cooley
Treasure these moments and those you hold dear. Love you!
Spring is always such a beautiful time of renewal. And it’s right around the corner…
The future is an open landscape resting at our feet. We each define it, day by day, through our perception of it and the steps we knowingly choose to take.
Love to you and yours!
“The reality is that artists have a gigantic hand in injecting the beauty and vitality we all enjoy in present day life. I wrote an article about this very subject: the role of the artist in society and how their creative impact is broad and deep.
“Without the beauty continually brought into being by the many players in the various genres of art, this world would be a dull soulless place. My personal role and responsibility as an artist is to not only create beautiful work that uplifts others, but to also actively support my fellow artists.
“Art is my job, my life and my love, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.”
~Ana Livingston, Fine Artist
I apologize for my long term absence here! There’s much updating to do, but that will have to wait for another day. Currently I’m back up in Washington State to visit my father, family, and this time around, to attend a school reunion. It’s been a great visit so far and here’s a shot from earlier day: the Skagit River in western Washington state. More photos and stories to come!
Hope you’ve all been well. Speak with you soon! 😀
Today I feel like things are finally coming together. I still have much more refinement to do on both panels, but that might have to wait a bit. It looks like the bad weather that has been sweeping through the midlands (my sympathies) is now due here. Consequently I might not be back to the walls until next week. We’ll see…
I hope you all are well and happy. When you have a moment, do check in and let me know how you’re treating life. 😀
I wanted to share my special place—just a couple blocks from my home. It’s where I feel like I can connect with the rest of the world.
Wishing all my friends a wonderful weekend and Happy Easter. Be well!
And yes, it’s very good. 😀
A friend just flew in from Colombia bearing gifts: Cafe Quindio, Cafe Oribia, Cafe Mariscal, and, of course, Juan Valdez. Let the coffee (over) indulgence begin! 😀
It’s all about being at the right place at the right time.
Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni was born on the 6th of March in 1475. In my opinion he is the epitome of the High Renaissance.
Thank you, sir, for your endless inspiration and contribution to our culture. You are missed but could never be forgotten.
There’s something magical about watching the sun calmly drift across a room.
After arriving home, I’d placed my earrings on a nearby table and burrowed under a soft blanket on the couch. While the sun continued its gentle march and evening slowly consumed the last light of day, it was by chance I looked down at this moment: when my heart danced to life.
Life truly is beautiful, isn’t it?
I am originally from the islands in the Pacific Northwest and from there moved up into the mountains (I am adventurous that way). I lived on a plot of land that bordered the National Forest. The air was fresh, our creek’s water was pure glacial run-off, and there were firs and pines as far as the eye could see. Idyllic.
After a wonderful first summer and beautiful fall, winter struck on the first of November. I found myself buried under snow for the next six months of my life. One quickly learns at a point such as this that you have a choice: do or die.
Needless to say I got very adept with a snow shovel (and later a snow blower) but even those tools didn’t do much in handling the constant physical (and mental) strain that arises from trying to carry on with even the simplest of daily activities.
I now reside on the Suncoast of Florida, but that does not mean I don’t have compassion and an understanding of what you folks up north are enduring. We are thinking of you down here and hope it ends very shortly.
From me to you, here’s a little something to warm your day:
Hello everyone! It’s been awhile since I’ve checked in. I hope you’ve all been well and happy. 🙂
I’ve been a busy girl and one little project I just completed was creating a new website – www.analivingstonfineartist.com – for lil ol’ moi. I hope you can take a moment, browse and send me your feedback. I would appreciate it!
We’ll be talking more soon—here’s to each and every one of you having a wonderful weekend! (BIG wink to NFL fans).
It’s another calm and colorful late evening. Seated is my daughter, Mariah June, enjoying the few last moments of a setting sun here in Old Clearwater Bay. In the distance is one of the beautiful barriers islands to the mainland: Clearwater Beach.
This sunset is a wonderful gradient of sherbert hues: yellow through to orange, pink, purple, and finally blending to blue. The tide is out, offering many treats for the seabirds and a warm breeze glides silently over the water with nary a care. It’s almost magical.
Wishing my friends an equally serene and carefree weekend.
What a glorious weekend it is; low 90’s with a nice breeze, constant boat traffic to and fro in the Intracoastal Waterway, and I am enjoying every moment, in and out of the pool.
Hope everyone is having a wonderful weekend. My best to you all!
I have collaborated on just two murals in this life and those were both on the west coast. Here’s a couple in-progress shots of my first project: a very large exterior mural in the Belltown District of downtown Seattle, Washington. The mural required four vertical stages of scaffolding, took two months to complete, and depicted various Seattle landmarks in a montage format with, well, flying coffee cups.
Though we enjoyed the mildness of the Pacific Northwest summer, our days were dedicated to bringing to life an enormous wall painting. There are many moments from those weeks still fondly etched in my memory.
Those were also exciting times as we were creating in the days of the thriving Grunge music scene. This was back when one could drop into a neighborhood club on any given night (after a day “at the wall”) and see the likes of Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, and Alice in Chains (I saw the latter at the historic Moore Theatre).
Designer coffee shops weren’t the rage as yet, but were just starting to sprout up (seemingly) on every third street corner. Yes, the flying coffee cups mural theme was whimsical at the time, but in retrospect, foretold the coming popularity of a new age of coffee shops and their proliferation across the American landscape. Hello, Starbucks.
As a bitter side note on the mural, a building has since been erected in the adjacent parking lot, effectively entombing our work for all time. I’m hoping those passersby who appreciated our mural while it still stood in the light of day continue to make their way by that site and smile, remembering simpler times.
Many see nothing ahead but a menacing storm.
I see a gentle road through dappled hills of green; a chance to fuse myself with the swirling clouds above; to catch the sweet scent of grass and trees.
I welcome the strong, cooling winds, the torrential rain about to fall, the lightning that will enliven me. Such serendipity to be here at just the right moment.
I don’t see danger ahead. I see life.
This is a promotional photo of many of the actors under contract with MGM at the time of the studio’s 20th birthday party:
1st Row: James Stewart, Margaret Sullivan, Lucille Ball, Hedy Lamarr, Katharine Hepburn, Louis B. Mayer, Greer Garson, Irene Dunne, Susan Peters, Ginny Simms, Lionel Barrymore.
2nd Row: Harry James, Brian Donlevy, Red Skelton, Mickey Rooney, William Powell, Wallace Beery, Spencer Tracy, Walter Pidgeon, Robert Taylor, Pierre Aumont, Lewis Stone, Gene Kelly, Jackie Jenkins.
3rd Row: Tommy Dorsey, George Murphy, Jean Rogers, James Craig, Donna Reed, Van Johnson, Fay Bainter, Marsha Hunt, Ruth Hussey, Marjorie Main, Robert Benchley.
4th Row: Dame May Whitty, Reginald Owen, Keenan Wynn, Diana Lewis, Marilyn Maxwell, Esther Williams, Ann Richards, Marta Linden, Lee Bowman, Richard Carlson, Mary Astor.
5th Row: Blanche Ring, Sara Haden, Fay Holden, Bert Lahr, Frances Gifford, June Allyson, Richard Whorf, Frances Rafferty, Spring Byington, Connie Gilchrist, Gladys Cooper.
6th Row: Ben Blue, Chill Wills, Keye Luke, Barry Nelson, Desi Arnaz, Henry O’Neill, Bob Crosby, Rags Ragland.
Hope this brought back some great memories.
Tilapia and asparagus. Let me tell you it tastes even better than it looks.
Have an excellent weekend. 🙂
I have been an artist since I was old enough to pick up a stick and carve in the dirt. From there I took an even more active interest in art, and with my family’s support (and access to a small studio where I was allowed to paint a few times a week,) I finished my first framed oil on canvas at the age of 6.
Now, I would never say I was a prodigy. I simply had an unquenchable desire to create beauty wherever and whenever, and it was sometimes nothing more than taking a crude watercolor brush to butcher paper or weaving a daisy chain while sitting in a field. The fact remained that there was a creative flow within me that never ebbed.
To state that I was most happy when I was creating art is a fact and probably true with most artists. But within that fickle activity called life, circumstances, sometimes out of need or ignorance, can take one down a path into the mundane and complacent. And if anybody ever wanted to know how to extinguish artistic urge, it’s to submerge it in the day-to-day humdrum routine of the ordinary. Surefire killer.
That being said, it is of the utmost importance that an artist keep his head above water—vital, actually. The reality is that artists have a gigantic hand in injecting the beauty and vitality we all enjoy in present day life. I wrote an article about this very subject: the role of the artist in society and how their creative impact is broad and deep.
Without the beauty continually brought into being by the many players in the various genres of art, this world would be a dull, soulless place. My personal role and responsibility as an artist is to not only create beautiful work that uplifts others, but to actively support my fellow artists. Art is my job, my life and my love, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
I just had to share—well, at least via a photo—a most delightful discovery I’ve made as of late: Eppa White Sangria. Now, I’m not a drinker by any stretch, but this stuff is just plain good and 100% organic, to boot.
In Eppa’s own words: “Introduced with a fruity and inviting nose that leads into a light-bodied and refreshing taste, Eppa SuperFruit Sangria is full of amazing flavor.” Too true.
I’ve tasted both the red and newly-released white and though both are very good, my personal palate leans towards the latter. If you have the opportunity to try a glass or two, do write and let me know what you think.
Bottoms up! 🙂
Well, I’m back.
It’s odd to think that those three little words are the first line of my long-overdue post while simultaneously being the last line of a long, yet very epic novel (spoiler alert for that link). At any rate, it’s been awhile, eh? Probably 3 months. And I’ve missed you. 🙂
I have been wrapped up in this and that, and well…you know how life goes. In deciding the content for my first post in so many months, I thought of my time in Hawaii so many years go.
I had just graduated high school at age 17, my step-grandfather had passed away, and I was asked by my grandmother to accompany her (with parental permission) to Hawaii that next winter. My family and I were living on the west coast at that time, and I had always wanted to experience the islands; all the while growing up they seemed so close but at the same time a million miles away. Now my dreams were to become reality.
Winter came and I found myself boarding my very first airplane to a new world. We left a frozen land, crossed an endless sea, and ultimately landed in an oasis of sun, fun and surf. The two of us then proceeded to travel the normal tourist route of shops, hotels and marketplaces in bustling multi-cultural Oahu.
I have to admit that Oahu—or The Gathering Place— being the busiest and most tourist-friendly of the islands, did not resonate with me. After due time I was happy to find myself finally climbing a tarmac staircase onto a rickety puddle jumper destined for Maui.
Now, this was many years ago, mind you, and probably at least 2 dozen major hotels have since been built on the leeward side of the Valley Isle, and built in what I remember as being “nothing more” than pineapple and sugar cane fields at the foot of the West Maui Mountains. In those days it was a magnificent sight and one I never grew tired of.
After the Maui experience we flew up to the northernmost island, Kauai. The Garden Isle, at that time, was scarcely populated and I recall there being a building restriction in place: a maximum of 5 stories. Consequently, it kept the hotel chains to the bigger islands and the result on Kauai was that you were surrounded by the native culture, which I had come to love.
For a short time I stayed in a very small cabin on the Wailua River. This was a calm and quiet time, and I somehow escaped ever viewing the boat that would take sunburned tourists up the river to see the famed Fern Grotto.
I was more content to pick ripening bananas off the trees by the shoreline or crossing over the road and down the hill to collect shells on the beach by Kapaa Town. And then, there were always the moonrises…
Kauai is known for many things, one of them being the mountain range that serves as the resting place for the mighty Sleeping Giant (Nounou Mountain). As Hawaiian legend goes, the giant (after much labor or overeating….or both,) laid down on the mountain ridge and never again rose.
This island also holds the record as having one of the rainiest spots on Earth: Mount Waialeale (Hawaiian: overflowing water). Rain has fallen more than 340 days within a single year here, and has at least once accumulated close to 700 inches of annual rainfall. The result is endless green.
It’s interesting that I recalled these memories today, and perhaps even more interesting to me that I decided to share them. Simply put: Hawaii was a life-changing experience for me all those many years ago. It was there that I decided what I wanted to be in life—truly.
Is that to say I haven’t taken a detour now and again? No. But at least I knew when I had wandered, and which was the right path when I’d finally made my way out of the wilderness.
Well, I’m back.
To new beginnings…
My very best to all my friends in the coming year. Let’s make those dreams come true.
Tis the season, my friends. I am wishing you the very best in the coming year.
A friend of mine is traveling Europe and the Far East for a month or so. I’m housesitting and loving it. I’ve temporarily traded in my Gulf view for that of a calm lake. No complaints here.
He’ll feel no sorrow
As I turn and leave,
Except for losing
A small reminder
Of someone else.
I took a few moments this morning to idle away in my sun-filled backyard. Amazing what you can discover with just a turn of your head.
Sometimes I miss being a child. The innocence. The grandeur of the world.
But maybe I can just change my mind.
I can’t turn
or escape from
that are me.
Copyright © 2011 by Ana Livingston. All Rights Reserved.
Caresses me now…
We are one.
Copyright © 2011 by Ana Livingston. All Rights Reserved.
I claw at self-made walls,
For decades they’ve stood firm
My fragile stream of love
Now seeks its way, unearned.
Copyright © 2011 by Ana Livingston. All Rights Reserved.
“Love is not only something you feel. It’s something you do.”
What a wondrous statement…
Good morning one and all! It’s October! And that means for me, here on the Suncoast of Florida, that tolerable weather is almost upon us! 😉
I hope you all had an enjoyable weekend and speak to you soon!
This is a tribute to my Aunt Betty; a consummate pianist and all-around lovely lady who never compromised in her desire to live by her craft alone.
I remember she and my uncle, an incredible chef and business owner, ran a high-end dinner club in Marina del Rey back in the time when rubbing elbows with the likes of John Wayne or The Rat Pack was just a typical Saturday night.
The photo I’ve included is a VHS screen capture from the movie entitled “The Young Lions“. It’s an old 1958 war classic starring Marlon Brando, Montgomery Clift and Maximilian Schell, as well as other notable names. That’s her happily playing while gazing towards the singing gentleman on the piano bench to her right: Dean Martin.
So, she was sometimes an unbilled pianist at a movie studio, amongst other things, all in addition to entertaining in their club. And the one gig she rarely missed in all her years was Sunday morning service at their local church.
I remember there used to be this beautiful black and white framed glamor photo of my aunt that graced my grandmother’s foyer. As a young, wided-eyed girl, I’d stare at it often and dream of the wondrous life she must have led.
My aunt is older now and long since retired, yet she’s still the lovely, warm-hearted soul she’s always been. I’ve heard ever since I was a young girl that I “look just like Aunt Betty”. What a wonderful, wonderful compliment.
Last night’s classic “Don’t you take a shot of me” shot. 😀