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Rachel Newsletter: April 2012

Rachel Dickson artist enewsletter

Issue: April, Week 4       

"Oh, the Places You'll Go!":


Greetings, Art Lovers!

Today's reflection is completely inspired by Dr. Suess's final book published before his death and a video tribute to such found at "Oh, the Places You'll Go at Burning Man 2011".  In essence, for me, this is a double inspiration...because the Burning Man
n annual art event and temporary community based on radical self expression and self-reliance in the Black Rock Desert of Nevada...that I would LOVE to attend!) is yet another expression similar to the one put into book form by Dr. Suess in "Oh, the Places You'll Go." So WHO better to have featured in this little film clip using this book as the script than various folks filmed while at last year's Burning Man festival?  Anyway, take a minute (6 minutes actually) and watch this little inspirational video. "Oh, the Places You'll Go at Burning Man 2011" Then read on.

Oh, the Places You'll Go.  Chris and I 2012I've always been an adventurer at heart. I grew up in the flat farmlands of Northwest Ohio day-dreaming of travelling afar, visiting the mountains and oceans and rivers of the world while watching the puffy clouds roll by. And as most people did (I think?) I had my favorite places to go and sit and ponder for hours about such adventures as a kid growing up. One of these places was the ONLY "body" of water within miles of my childhood home...a neighboring farmer's pond.  I'd set-off and walk beside the drainage ditch through the field to this pond (which was about 1/4 mile from home) and I'd sit and fish and ponder and stare-off wondering what the world might be like near flowing rivers and big natural rock walls. I dreamed of living in my own cabin in the mountains one day.

My gypsy soul has been adventuring pretty much non-stop since those days. Four years of college, six years in the U.S. Army, three years of living in Chattanooga, Tennessee, four years of living in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, nine years of living in Jackson, Tennessee and two more years of living in Chattanooga, Tennessee. And isn't it funny how often times life leads us full-circle? Now I'm back living in Northwest Ohio.

The photo above was taken just a few weeks ago on my 40th birthday. That's me and Chris...at the pond. In the background is the red Toyota truck that has taken me to so MANY wonderful places over the years...and I think it's PERFECT that now it's brought me back to the very place I'd spent dreaming about the mountains AND the one I love is here to experience this with me! Directly behind us, behind the brush, across the field and out of the picture is my childhood home. In the foreground (looking into the reflection in my sunglasses) you can see the pond. It looks SO small to me now, yet seemed so HUGE to me as a kid. This place holds many special memories for me! (so it was a nobrainer for me to choose to propose to Chris at this place...the pond...which NOW means even MORE to me...because she said, yes!)

Oh, the Places You'll Go.  the Pond!"You're on your own...you know what you know....and YOU are the guy that will decide where to go." Funny thing is...as I think about this ...knowing that I have created and continue to create my current place in life. Me...no one else. When I pose the question..."what is it you want, Rachel?" The answers spin and whirl around me. It's just not that easy to answer that question now it seems. The world is at our finger tips and we can do ANYTHING....BE....ANYTHING we want to be. One thing I know...my knower knows...I WANT to BE my BEST self!

I often say, "be careful what you wish for"...because I myself have attracted things into my life that I THOUGHT I wanted there...and turns out...when they were stepping onto my front doorstep suddenly those things didn't seem quite so appealing. It is WORTH pondering the question, "What IS it you want?" Exploring the answers to this question is utterly FASCINATING! Why yes, things come and go that we don't want...but yet...many things we discover along the way we learn that we DO want to be a part of our lives!

This, THIS is the underlying motto behind Rachel's "Life is an Adventure" credo! Life is about this process of discovery...the lightbulb moments of when we learn what resonates with us and what doesn't. And it is my wish for those who are reading this...that you too discover YOUR life's greatest experiences!

So...if you haven't viewed that video yet...you MUST go now and view "Oh, the Places You'll Go at Burning Man 2011"!  

"Your mountain is WAITING, so get on your way!" Thank you Dr. Suess!

Go. Be. DO! Discover!





Fresh from the Art Studio:


Surface Tension, by artist Rachel Dickson
Introducing original mini-paintings, abstract on wood! If you are an avid art collector OR if you've been an art lover and have yet to start your personal collection, these little minis are perfect! Seven inches by seven inches?  Five inches by five inches? We all have space in our homes or office for a painting to fit that size. Which is why I opted to paint small. Affordable too!


To get a closer look, simply click on any of the images below.

Q & A with Rachel:


If you could meet anyone, living or dead, who would you meet?

Two people I'd LOVE to meet! Eleanor Roosevelt and Amelia Earhart. Gosh, I'd love to have been in the cockpit of that plane when Amelia gave Eleanor a ride over Washington! Would have LOVED to hear their conversation and pipe in with some chatter of my own.

Which celebrity have people said they remind you of?

Hah, the answer to that one is hillarious to me. Many times I've been compared to Ellen Degeneres...and I supposed that's because I like to dance. I always take that as a huge compliment. I think Ellen is very cool and is an example for us all to embrace ourselves for who we are regardless of what others may think or say about it. She's a huge role-model for being yourself and for laughing at yourself.

I've also been told I remind people of Rachel Maddow. I think she is a fabulous example of embracing what you're good at and people respect her for that.

What songs are included on the soundtrack to your life?

Blue on Black by Kenny Wayne Shepherd
Angel from Montgomery by John Prine
Forget About it by Allison Krauss
Gravity by John Mayer
Half Acre by Hem
OMG by Usher
Power of Two by Indigo Girls
Stones in the Road by Mary Chapin Carpenter
Realize by Colbie Caillat
Many the Miles by Sara Bareilles


Check out Rachel's NEW, COOL friends, Page:


Click here to view Rachel's COOL Friends page
I don't think we give enough credit to where credit is due sometimes. Nor do I think it really cool that most accolades aren't given until AFTER those who've inspired us or left an impression on us one-way-or-another are gone. With that in mind, I've created a page on my website where I've begun listing some of those people. Titled "Cool Friends", it's on that page (obviously an evolving project) that I begin to tell their stories.

Click here to view Rachel's COOL Friends online.


Creativity and Play?:


Click to view video of Tim Brown on Ted Talks"I LOVE to goof around and play! Yet there are many times I give pause to the thought, "hmmm, that might be embarrassing." Then I found this....

"At the 2008 Serious Play conference, designer Tim Brown talks about the powerful relationship between creative thinking and play -- with many examples you can try at home (and one that maybe you shouldn't).
Tim Brown is the CEO of the 'innovation and design' firm IDEO -- taking an approach to design that digs deeper than the surface..."

The following thought provoking talk given by Tim Brown is WELL worth the 28 minutes it takes to watch/listen. Click on the image above or simply click here.

Want MORE inspiration? Check out other Ted Talks!


Reading Rachel Recommends (R.R.R.):.


I LOVE to read!  But yes, I know, not everyone does.  So if you don't give two rips around reading...skip this section.  Otherwise, read on!

Just something about the written word!  Check 'em out.




Got a book you like? Tell me about it!


Check out Rachel's Art Store on Etsy:


Click here to Shop at Rachel's online Art Store!
Have you ever heard of Etsy.com? I hadn't until I purchased some custom made jewelry from robandlean's etsy shop on this AMAZING online marketplace! Self-proclaimed as "the world's handmade marketplace" Etsy.com is truly a marketplace chocked FULL of handmade original goods!  You'll find everything on Etsy.com from paintings, to jewelry, to glass, to furniture, to everything in between!

Click here to shop online at Rachel's Art Store on Etsy.


The Daily Blog:


Click here to read Rachel Dickson's blog
"Do what you can, where you are, with what you have."   Teddy Roosevelt

This quote is prominently displayed near my desk as a reminder to not be a whiner about what I don't have and to embrace what I currently DO have to work with.

The Daily Blog is full of such personal inspirations and aspirations. You will find daily musings, adventure recaps, talk about personal thought topics and much more at Rachel's blog. Certainly the most comprehensive place online that you'll find the goings-on with Rachel.

Go, Do, BE!


Rushing in!:


Sometimes things in our lives rush in....pour in...and overflow. Sometimes these are good things and sometimes not-so-good. Which is what this painting is about. Measuring 3.50"x3.50" this mini-abstract would be a great accent to that part of your home you need a little bit of red.Click here to view Rushing In

Mini-Abstract Art!

Or need a little artsy gift to give that special someone? Give ART!

Click here to view "Rushing in."


Artists that I LIKE!:


Extreme Sheep LED ArtOne likely would never consider extreme shepherding to be a form of art...but COME ON! After you watch this video you might just feel as I do about this "art/ad project". BRILLIANT!

Art? Well, it certainly brought a smile to my face if that counts!

Sara Knapton of UK news, The Telegraph, wrote, "A group of Welsh sheep farmers have become internet sensations after a video went online showing sheep being herded into astonishing shapes on a mountainside.

More than a million internet users have watched the viral video in the four days since it was released online. (March 2009) The 200 second ad also sees the creatures manoeuvred into position to create a giant sheep and even has them creating the Mona Lisa with the various coloured LEDs on their back.

The creators of the video, for TV makers Samsung, revealed that they recruited Welsh national sheep herding champion Gerry Lewis, and a team of Welsh sheep herders to guide the flocks into position. However they admitted computer trickery had been used.

Matt Smith, the co-founder of ad agency The Viral Factory said: 'The people on camera are real farmers and they were really controlling the sheepdogs. Rather than trying to fake it all we did it for real.'

'The sheep herding bit is straight up no trickery but there is a fair amount of computer trickery and post production work.'

'We thought the Mona Lisa was the big wink to people once they saw that we thought they would realise it was not all real.'

'But we have been quite surprised that there is still a debate about whether it is all real and people have been coming up with various theories.'

Mr. Smith said the main problem on the shoot was not herding the sheep, but getting enough of them. He went on: 'We filmed it at the end of last month and it is lambing season so we could not disturb the sheep that were lambing because it would have been too stressful.'

'We used different sheep over the two day shoot because we couldn't have them running around all day. We didn't give them any treats because they got to wear an LED coat I can't think of anything better.'

'The video is silly and joyful. This one has caused a real stir.'"

Click here to view the Extreme Sheep LED Art video.


Talk, Tell, Rumor, Spread the Word:


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And THANK YOU in advance for spreading the word!


Do You...Facebook?:


Click here to find Rachel Dickson on FacebookClick on the image to the right and "Like" Rachel's artist page and you might just be the one to receive a FREE SHIPPING coupon to use towards your next purchase of artwork!

Click here to "LIKE" Rachel's artist page on Facebook




Rachel Dickson, artist, outdoor enthusiast
What are we waiting for? Let's together be our best selves starting right now!

Wanna cook a new dish? Make it for dinner. Wanna paint a new painting? Paint it. Wanna visit a local museum? Buy tickets and go. Wanna hike that trail? Hike it. Wanna learn how to tie knots? Go get a knot book and tie knots. It really is simpler than we seem to think it is. We just gotta go DO it.

And in the words of Chris' 16 yr old, Hannah (when teasing her brother or sister because they're taking longer than she'd like in whatever it is their doing, "T...t...today junior!"

Until next time...enjoy life! After all...we are the ones creating it.



Questions? Comments? Snide Remarks?
email rachel at racheldickson.com



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