Heal

There are a lot of videos on the internet showing the devastation of the disaster in Japan, footage that you would not see on mainstream television. I can’t bring myself to watch it right now. The comments are painting a picture for me and it scares me to even take a look! A lot of healing to take place in the world, a lot of internal healing also.
koru hand painted rocks
I did see in the news that there was a 60 year old man rescued 15km out to sea. That is hope for me. That all is not doom and gloom and there still is life to preserve and hold on to. And every bit of hope there is, we need to hold on to. I celebrate with this man his life, and I also am sad that he will probably never see his wife again who was swept out to sea. And this is one of many many stories, I am sure will emerge. And the reality of many people not seeing their loved ones alive, ever again.
It’s a hot day today in Gisborne, it’s like summer has returned. Such a luxury. I thought about taking my new surfboard out in the sea and then my thoughts were of the people in Japan, the water and ocean that connects us, the loss of life out there…I just couldn’t bring myself to go there…wanting to respect the huge loss of life – it has really affected me.
A time to heal land, a time to heal people.

Self responsibility to heal.
Arohanui,
Jo x
PS – another soothing rock to paint, it is a pastel yellow colour called moonbean. The spiral is healing…

Sustain

This rock is full of a whole lot of stuff!
So many thoughts going around in my head at the moment. Many things happening in the world, planetary shifts, change, and plenty of internal shifts as well.
Today, I’ve been listening to stories I’ve captured on video about sustainability. It’s a funny word thats been thrown around quite a bit and used in many ways. In fact, its seen to be “cool” if you have some kind of “sustainability” attached to what you do. Many people I have talked to all have different views although one common thought is emerging and that is we need to look after our planet in order to sustain our existence on this earth. Because if we are not looking after our planet, then how can we expect our planet to look after us?
koru hand painted rocks
And our relationship with the earth is non- negotiable.
I watched in total disbelief as the tsunami in Japan totally engulfed everything in its way, this black mass moving across the land…the strength and power of the water was mind boggling and I imagine if you were in its pathway, theres a good chance you would not survive. The images and footage that have emerged are disturbing…
I think about my life, the relationships I have, my family and friends, the work that I do, the struggles, the triumphs, everything in my life that I am dealing with right now and then I see this and it puts everything into perspective for me.

What if we all ceased to exist on this earth? What if we were here today, gone tomorrow? In light of recent events, that is a very real possibility and that reality is increasing by the day. I imagine there are many around the world who are also questioning their lives and their existence…
I decided yesterday to create an evacuation plan. We’ve started stocking up on water and other things which will continue over the coming weeks. I never thought I would say it or even be doing it but the feeling to do this is so strong…
I feel even more passionate about my work than ever before. The stories I tell, the art I create, the messages I share are now more important than ever.
Arohanui,
Jo x
PS – I have no anger at Papatuanuku for what has happened. I am sad for the loss of life and I am sad that it has come to this. But I also understand that this is mother nature’s way of healing herself, letting go of unnecessary things that no longer serve this planet, just as we humans go through a process of letting go to heal ourselves…

The Space In Between

I love this rock I’ve painted today. It’s one of my favorite rocks so far. It was very soothing to paint.
The weather is changing. It’s been raining for most of the day and I’ve been in a different space. An in between space where I’m neither her nor there, just in between. It’s kind of an odd feeling…a transitional space perhaps, reflective, just being…and there is probably some tired in there too! I woke this morning with a million and one ideas floating around in my mind which is great but now I’m tired!
koru hand painted rock
I feel the need to declutter again and let go of a few external and internal things and perhaps then I will see a clearer pathway and will venture out into another space. But for now, am embracing this space in between…
Arohanui,
Jo x
PS – I took this photo on my laptop. I quite liked the idea of having the rock and the paint and the metallic surface coming together. The dark grey colour in the middle is the natural colour of the rock, the other greyish colour is called delta grey and the creamy colour is called manuka honey.

Orange

Feeling like sending lots and lots of aroha today to everyone wherever you are!!! I believe in the power of love and am feeling all the love flowing around Aotearoa right now!
koru hand painted rocks
I believe it is at times like this when we are vulnerable, that we reach out, we connect and we remember who we are and why we are here.

Arohanui ki a koutou katoa,
Jo 🙂
My rock is a pretty intense orange today – so hence the title!! I was quite taken with how intense it looked on the rock and then when I photographed it, it looked even more orange!! And much aroha to Jacq who called me today from Oz! Whenever we korero the words shared are always meaningful and profound. It never ceases to amaze me at how perfect the timing is – thanks Jacq xx

Risk Taking

I’ve always been a risk taker. When we were young, we were not “protected” children where our parents constantly worried about us and kept us safe. In fact it was quite the opposite and we probably should have been cared for better than we were! Love my parents to bits though, they brought us up the best way they knew how…and in hindsight this freedom as a child has enabled me to be open minded, creative and resilient.
koru hand painted rocks
We can only truly experience life I believe, if we allow ourselves to take risks and step outside our comfort zones. If we allow ourselves to feel, to really feel and express openly these feelings, to expose ourselves to those who are our worst critics and to face our worst fears, then this is risk taking…
If we are doing what we love and being who we are with no fear or no care about what others think, then we are risk taking. When I decided to be an artist full time six years ago, this was a huge risk, not only because I would no longer be getting a regular income but also because of the criticism I would receive from those who saw what I was doing as “impossible” and an “uncalculated risk” and how could I possibly live? Resilience is a big thing and teaching our children how to problem solve in this day and age will go a long way, believe me!
There is no greater joy than doing what I love and being who I am. I welcome challenges and the opportunity to take risks everyday because they remind me of my strength and resilience. Through opening my heart and my mind, I allow myself to step into the unknown, to make mistakes and just like a child, to be totally present with what is.
Life is one big risk, so we might as well risk all and make a good go of it!

Te Ao Mārama

An understanding…
te ao mārama – the world of light, life, earth, physical world
ao – the world, light, specific period, cloud, a day, dawning of the day
mārama – illuminating light, to understand, be clear, light
marama – moon, month
koru hand painted rock
And those are just the short answers!
I love our Māori language because it is so conceptual and every word is a story. I love going onto the marae and listening to our pahake speak in such poetical ways…it is one of the most beautiful languages I know…

Our tupuna (ancestors) were so connected to the environment and our language reflects this. They knew of planets in our solar system even before scientists had discovered them. They knew that the moon has an effect on the earth and that it also affects us as people living on the earth…They navigated by the stars in their journeys across the sea and they knew when the time was right for planting and what the weather would be – just by looking to the sky.
The Maori word for moon is marama. It is also the word that we use for month and just as the moon goes through its cycles every month, so a woman experiences her own cycles which are influenced by the moon…
Arohanui,
Jo 🙂
PS – Day 60 today – its been two months painting a rock a day – yay!!