Visionary Artist, Author, and Tai Chi Instructor
Creating A Path
One Vision At A Time
A determined child, I pointed to the "big radio" and demanded to hear music. All styles of music accompany my lifelong creative dances of painting and writing. Music was my first step out of the box from my quiet world as an introspective only child into a bigger picture.
When I was seven, my teacher held up my example of cat drawings. An artist is born! Meanwhile at home, I was already sharpening skills with freehand drawings of many animals.
Gathering the Threads, Choosing the Colors
Practicing drawing and painting in various media advanced as I studied Wesley Dennis' painted illustrations for Marguerite Henry's animal stories. Wesley Dennis captured spirit. Creatures lived and breathed off the page. My Hero!
Albert Payson Terhune, investigative journalist and author, wrote fiction-fact blends of stories about his famed Sunnybank Collies. I owned and trained my first golden collie, Lad, named for Terhune's Lad A Dog.
Marguerite Kirmse's illustrations for Terhune's books, done from the Sunnybank collies themselves, ignited my desire to progress with painting. Pride of accomplishment soon followed. I sold my first painting, a pastel portrait of a champion collie, at age fifteen.
Trust the Growing Tree
I am picking up a memory of climbing well worn steps into an art class studio. Pushing open the huge old heavy oak doors, I welcome the scent of fresh oil paint and turpentine. Students and teachers are gathering! Graduating with Art, English, and Liberal Arts degree from Slippery Rock University in Pennsylvania opened new windows for continuing growth and development. Where will I go?
Paul and I began our spiritual journey together discovering eight different locations in the USA. Every stop had fresh lessons to learn and new friends to meet! What will be next?
An opportunity came for me to illustrate Collie Concept, by Mrs. George H. (Bobbee) Roos and work with the Collie Club of America to develop a set of twenty lithographs of famous collie champions of the past. I was asked to paint four magazine covers for Collie Review Magazine. Portraits of countless animals and numerous commissions complete vivid pictures.
For relaxation, meditation and rest, I sharpened my knitting skills. Designing and planning with yarn and feeling the rhythmic click of needles helped my left brain to open while expressing right brain's love of color and texture.
I still felt unsettled. There seemed to be more but where? I had a "dream" while fully awake, a shadow of moonlight on a dark wall suggests an image of a butterfly emerging and growing.
What next? Maybe writing can help? I begin to write random notes on scraps of paper....
Intuition to Fruition
Tai Chi Enhances Life
Light years passed. My joints, sore since childhood, became even more stiff and inflamed. Why was my energy so slow? Chronic conditions were not helped by traditional medicines. Tests read all normal. Doctors scratched their heads.
Meanwhile an M.D. suggested a Tai Chi class for our son, Rob, to help him recover from an injury and bring about better concentration and focus.
"I know where there's a class!" I had seen a sign in a doctor's office advertising Tai Chi taught by Jiong Gu, a doctor of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Rob was eager to attend class and learned quickly.
"I want to learn Tai Chi!" I was in such poor physical shape, my son coached me at home for eight months before I was strong enough to attend class.
My life began to Change! I gained strength and confidence. I started to write with more focus and organization. I had goals! Light and bright color began to turn on in my paintings as I expressed the awakening new visions and dreams to accompany the animal parade of paintings and nature scenes.
I had friends! I joined Art Club, a group of artists working on their own creations. I showed them Tai Chi and how Tai Chi helps painting. "We want to learn Tai Chi!"
Several years later, Jiong Gu appointed me leader of his form practice group in Yang Long Form Tai Chi. I also began to teach Tai Chi and Art Workshop at a local community center. Art students of all levels brought their own projects and choice of subjects for mutual encouragement and inspiration.
Intuition increased leading me forward to new friends, experiences, and mysteries. How did this happen? One meditation, one brushstroke, one idea at a time paints an evolving unfolding life picture.
Some years later I met Dr. Paul Lam, a family practice physician in Sydney Australia. He creates Tai Chi for Health programs. I certified to teach his program, Tai Chi for Arthritis. Tai Chi for Health instruction gives beginning students of all ages a boost for feeling energy (qi) moving quickly through the body with easy to learn forms. Tai Chi for Health programs also help people with compromised conditions experience benefits from safe and effective exercises. Joyful smiles, improving health and strength brings us into a Tai Chi family world-wide.
Finishing the Canvas
By now I had written the first draft of a book Silver Butterfly, Create A Vision, Awaken Your Creative Spirit. Tai Chi also helps memory and concentration. Tai Chi practice and teaching helps balance right (intuitive) and left brain (logic and action) functions in order to bring random scattered notes on scribbled papers into cohesive unified wholeness, a written and illustrated work.
The Power of Yes
In 2007, I was (finally) diagnosed with *Gilbert's Syndrome. I felt relieved. I had answers to my health qustions. GS is an inherited benign liver condition manageable with a lowered stress lifestyle, simple food, and gentle integrated exercises like Tai Chi and/or Yoga. Intuitively I was already following these suggestions!
GS symptoms may include elevated bilirubin blood levels, medicine, food, and light sensitivity, fatigue, rashes, chronic pain and stiffness, concentration challenges, anxiety and depression. Low weight may occur, some people may be carbohydrate intolerant.
Most of the medical professionals I talked to about Gilbert's Syndrome had never heard of it!
How to manage? Tap into creative positive relationships with family, friends and experiences. Approach activities with an open and flexible mind. Tune into your intuition. Plenty of rest and recreation filled with music brings a sense of inner peace. Simple nourishing foods, acupuncture, acupressure and self hypnosis Cds as needed plus daily Tai Chi and quiet seated mditation encourages calming and self assurance.
The Evolving Door
Silver Butterfly, Create A Vision, became an E-book in 2009. In 2010, I started Out of the Blue, a "Blueprint" for unlimited possibilities. Writing and painting without an agenda or even knowing what the next topic or moment will be, is another step in a play it forward creative adventure of the heart-mind.
Vision to Achievement
"Let the petals of your life unfold like a rose opening, one at a time and each in perfect order,"
"We are all here with unique gifts and talents to touch each others' lives in ways no one else can," Louise Watson, R.N.
"As we speak our life stories, others will also be encouraged to share. We are all one in our human family," William K. Emery, M.D.
** "I honor my sacred journey, I honor the sacred journey of others,"
Rev. Debra Basham, CHTP, NLP, HTt, RMT
* "All is possible with the mind,"
Paul Lam, M.D., family practice physician and Tai Chi Expert
*** "In pure consciousnss there is no time," Deepak Chopra. M.D.
http://www.shirleymaclaine.com/ Shirley MacLaine is an award winning actress, author, dancer, and spiritual teacher. Out on a Limb book (1983) expressed the same wonder and questioning I was experiencing. Shirley helped tie threads together. My life makes more sense. Shirley empowers me to speak and write with clarity, focus, and spontaneity.
http://www.youtube.com/ Out on a Limb as seen on TV (1987) Shirley MacLaine's video biography documentary.
The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron, artist and writer, brings increased light and joy into my artwork. I am now able to accept and understand my artist self better and feel more creative exhilaration.
http://gilbertssyndrome.com Medical research, coping skills and more for people with Gilberts Syndrome, an inherited liver condition also known as Chronic Hepatic Functional Disorder. UGT enzyme is defficient or missing in a GS person.
http://www.drhallowell.com/ Answers to Distraction and Delivered from Distraction by Edward Hallowell, M.D., looks at coping skills for Attention Deficit Disorder. Dr. Hallowell, an English major in college, discovered his own ADD/ADHD challenges in medical school and reaches forward to help others.
http://www.totallyadd.com Two Comedians with ADD/ADHD, Brian Green and Patrick McKenna, present humor, research, and interviews with experts. Help for Adult ADD. Documentaries: Add and Loving It and ADD and Managing It. Blogging is recommended!
http://www.chopracentermeditation.com Deepak Chopra, M.D., author of over 70 books, medical expert, visionary, and spiritual teacher. Meditate It Forward free online, Global Perfect Health meditation for self discovery and sharing. Meditation Challenges (various topics) and other products available for purchase. Expand (Y)our world with Meditation.
Tai Chi and Qigong
http://www.taichifarm.org/ The Tao of Taijiquan, Way to Rejuvenation and the Tao of Meditation, Way to Enlightenment by Jou, Tsung Hwa, mathematician and Tai Chi expert. These books open doors to unlock the mysteries and principles of Tai Chi. Jou, Tsung Hwa overcame serious illnesses at age 47 to gradually return his body to vibrant health with Tai Chi practice.
* http://www.taichiforhealthinstitute.org/ Paul Lam, M.D., is a family practice physician in Sydney, Australia. As a young medical student, Dr. Lam developed arthritis. He began to practice Tai Chi as a therapy to increase range of motion and freedom from pain. His health impoved so much he wanted to help others learn Tai Chi. Dr. Lam creates Tai Chi for Health Programs with medical doctors and Tai Chi experts. Dr. Lam loves travelling the world to teach and empower people with the of benefits of Tai Chi practice. Tai Chi for Energy is Dr. Lam's latest program. Research, articles, DVDs, Music, Books free newsletter and more.
http://www.ymaa.com/ Taijiquan Theory and Practice and other books by Dr. Yang, Jwing- Ming. Dr. Yang, a Yang Style Tai Chi and Qigong Master, alerts us to correct practice, continuing good health, and connection with higher energies of the spirit. Articles, DVDs, books and E-books, free newsletter, and more
Healing With Whole Foods, Asian Traditions and Modern Nutrition by Paul Pitchford, nutrition expert and Tai Chi instructor. Recommended by Jiong Gu, my Tai Chi instructor, this book is a wealth of correct nutrition information for various health conditions. Includes all types of help for you plus recipes.
The DNA of Healing by Margaret Ruby. This book explores ways of clearing your own DNA and looking at your family tree with new love and forgiveness.
Ask Your Angels by Alma Daniel. Angels are light forms and non-physical teachers. What do angels look like? Learn to work with Angel companions. Skeptical? Yes! A friend and Tai Chi student named LouiseWatson, an R.N., changed all that.
** http://imaginehealing.info/ Debra Basham, CHTP, NLP, HTt, RMT, and Joel P. Bowman, Ph.D, creative visualization and much more will enhance your healing story. Techniques can also be used with pets. Hypnotherapy Cd's encourage deep states of relaxation and inner peace. My favorite is Freedom from Pain. I "listen" while asleep at lowest volume to receive overnight body-mind-spirit balancing.
http://www.blogspot.com/ Create Your Free Blog. It's easy and fun! Custom templates and user friendly tools sharpen your creative and communicative skills as you achieve new levels of outreach and sharing. Tailor your blog for family and friends only or open to a larger world-wide viewing area. Out of the Blue leads me into the Wow of the Now!
firstname.lastname@example.org Request free illustrated PDF format E-book, Silver Butterfly Create A Vision. Paintings and Prints Available.
http://home.earthlink.net/~tai.cheetah/index.html Dahlis' Tai Chi home page.
The Big Radio played music taking me out of this world. I sang, I danced, I had pictures in my mind as songs rolled. I love turning the dial and tuning in the stations. Photo by my Dad, Robert G. Diess, M.D.
Silver Butterfly Create A Vision This is a enhanced (brightened) photo of the original painting.
Sky and Dahlis: Rare Edition's Cloudy Sky, our blue merle collie puppy easily became "The Best Dog Ever." Yes, that's my naturally curly hair!
Dahlis and *Emaus: oil portrait of *Emaus, Arabian Stallion, owned by Lila M. Bates. Portrait displayed with permission.
"The Blue Aran" sweater designed and knit with love. I still wear it today! Photo by Rob.
Silhouette: Teaching Tai Chi, photo by K. B. Wilson. We are a Tai Chi family, students and friends teaching and helping each other.
Cloud Hands Tai Chi from Dr. Paul Lam's program, Tai Chi for Arthritis, at overlook in Arizona mountains, photo by Paul
Tai Chi on the Beach, sunset photo by Rob
Fire and Water Dance, oil painting by Dahlis
At Home, photo by Paul
Oil Paintings: Three Angels-Silk and Feathers, and Bird of the Nile. Pair of Shetland Sheepdogs (framed) in pastel.