Posts

If you’re the plant, what’s the sun, nutrients, and water?

There are so many changes possible in 2022 and yet there are some deeply challenging aspects from the past few years that remain.

With an eye on the present, and a desire to take good care of myself so that I can continue to grow and be of support to others, I’m focusing on what nurtures me. 

What’s nourishing you now?

Several times a week I turn to my Zentangle practice for the creativity and calm it provides me. For the past few months I’ve been experimenting with botanicals and last week I added color. 

I’m writing a few haiku almost every day (as part of a year-long program), as it really stretches me. Here’s one of my favorites:

Beauty of first snow

breathtaking and heart-stopping

Vanishes quickly

Meditation almost daily, and a silent retreat for part of this week, are both restful, a respite (from the cacophony of my life), and CHALLENGING.

My daily walks in the neighborhood and a local state park, and my standing desk keep me from feeling rooted in my chair and energize me.  

Happily, I’ve found a few groups of colleagues who stimulate and support me and I leave those meetings feeling inspired and connected. 

 

 

 

How are you growing yourself—whatever that looks like to you?  

What habits have you created? 

What is no longer serving you, that needs to be let go?

(And, just knowing that we need to leave that which holds us back, doesn’t make it easy to do.)

What dream do you have that will move you forward? How will you design the ease, growth, play, calm, or whatever it is that you desire? I’m guessing you know those answers if you make the time to ask and answer the questions and develop a plan. 

If having a sounding board or a partner to ask some of the questions and support you in the design of your own self-care package, please reach out to me. It is a delight and privilege to walk on the path/be a part of the journey with those who want to take good care of themselves and step into more of their dreams. 

New (and old) tools and resources

What’s new and/or different in your repertoire?

Last week, I started an online art course and learned not only new ideas and techniques but discovered tools I had never really used before (okay, a bit of dabbling in the past).

I have to say that I am smitten with Posca acrylic paint markers! They’re juicy, rich, thick-delightful! (It was my first time really working with acrylic markers… I have concluded (!) that I need more nibs of different sizes to enable me to color backgrounds more quickly AND get into tiny spaces.)

 

 

I started to reflect on tools I love and use consistently to make my work more fun (for me) appealing (to me and to others)!

What about you?

What’s new in you’re toolbox?

I swear by my fountain pen with PlatinumCarbon Ink Cartridges. The feel is so smooth and the ink seems to last FOREVER!

 

 

 

And, I was reminded yesterday of my “five-finger sketchpad” (h/t to Clark Strand, haiku editor for Tricycle magazine, for the reminder of how I use my fingers for counting syllables for my haiku every day).


What are the tools and resources you adore using?

What might increase your enjoyment of your daily work or special occasions? I’d love to know!

2022 is looking great!

I am sooooo delighted to be starting a new year! What about you?

How are you envisioning your work and play in the coming year? 

Yesterday, I was struck by the idea of laying out every little bit of my planning for public offerings (okay, that’s an exaggeration) for the first four months of the year… and I’m almost there. Here’s what is cooking in the variety of interrelated areas in which I work and play.

Choose to focus on your area(s) of interest or take it all in!

  • bikablo — visual practitioner work and play
  • Zentangle for focus and calm
  • Appreciative Living Learning Circle for a new look at your daily life, increasing your joy every day
  • Transformative Coaching: Appreciative Inquiry Design with a Positive Intelligence Approach
  • Sharing the Highlights of Our Lives Visually (Creating a Visual Obituary)  (Most recent addition, didn’t make the visual!)

If you prefer to see the big picture and then look at the details, here you go!

If you love a list, here’s the plan… 

BIKABLO Virtual Training Programs

Bikablo Basic Day 1

For sketchnoters, scribes, graphic recorders, and graphic facilitators… those on the path to becoming visual practitioners.

  • Learn to hold the pen, draw clean lines, and structure your space on the flip chart
  • Create graphics and text containers/geometric shapes, objects, and symbols
  • Discover the easy ways the bikablo®  method provides to draw people, roles, groups, and situations
  • Use simple and fast options to color elements and spaces to support the graphic structure
  • Improve your handwriting—make it more legible and attractive—on flip charts… and more!

Training fee and materials, $500 USD

2.8, 10, 15 & 17.22 — First time ever in the evenings! Register here

3.4 & 3.5.22 — Friday & Saturday, Register here

 

Bikablo Basic Day 1 Refresher (for previous participants, 25% discount)

3.4 & 3.5.22 — Friday & Saturday, Register here

Training fee and materials, $375 USD

 

Bikablo Day 2

Continue your journey and take your skills to the next level!

  • Learn rapid drawing techniques—draw icons, symbols, and figures FAST
  • Explore emotions
  • Improve your hand lettering—make it more legible and attractive
  • Discover and practice a variety of headline styles
  • Capture live conversations using a simple, elegant technique for creating visually appealing charts
  • Work and play with mobile elements to create evergreen posters
  • Develop a complex visual presentation—from idea to draft to revisions to final product

Training fee and materials, $500 USD

4.8 & 9.22, Register here

 

Bikablo Advanced

  • Deepen your use of the bikablo visualization technique!
  • Discover the three levels of poster/chart design
  • Work and play with the emotions figures—bring them to life in a wide variety of narrative situations
  • Develop transformation stories in three pictures with the emotions figures
  • Write more legibly and faster—check your handwriting against legibility criteria
  • Add to your repertoire of attractive headline styles
  • Learn new mapping styles to take your scribing skills to the next level—develop meaningful, structured charts
  • Use all the learning steps and methods in concert to create your final project

Training fee and materials, $900 USD

3.15, 17, 23, 25.22 — Register here

 

1:1 Time—Visual Practitioner Coaching with Jill

Are you seeking to raise your competencies in analogue or digital drawing and design? Whether it’s for your personal practice or  graphic recording or graphic facilitation for clients, I can help you see your work in new ways, refine your skills in layout, use of color and lettering or guide you to explore new styles of drawing. 

Package of three sessions—$600. Choose your sessions here. 

(Choose the first date and we will finalize the remaining two sessions.)

Individual session—$250/50 minutes. Choose your session here.

Please reach out to me with your questions about all of this programming!

 

ZENTANGLE

Every session is 7 pm ET for 75 minutes 

Tangling with Our Favorite Memory of the Year!*

12.30.20

FREE

Learn more here.

Register here.

* Previous experience with Zentangle required

 

Learn to tangle!

Intro to Zentangle session — FREE Session 

Begin the journey by exploring the roots of this art and the steps to follow to draw your own beautiful patterns. In the very first class, working with creamy white tiles, black Micron pen, pencil, and a smudger, you will learn how to create your own beautiful Zentangle tiles and leave with a hunger to learn even more!

1.4.22

2.9.22

3.3.22

Register here.

 

Zentangle series

Class 1

Stunning Black Zentangle tiles*

Explore the reverse of all you have learned—we will use black tiles and white pens! With gel pens in hand and white chalk pencil at the ready, we will play with layering techniques to create fascinating new visuals. Black tile and white pens—an awesome combination!

* features black tiles, pencil, white gel pen, and white chalk pencil

Class 2

Introduction to Renaissance Tiles*

In this session, we shift into working with tan tiles, black, and brown pens, and white gel pens to visit the time of Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo. We will study the iconic characteristics of these masters and use techniques that are similar to make our own works of art.

  • features Renaissance/tan tiles, black and sepia Micron pen, white gel pen, and white chalk pencil

Class 3

The Beauty of Zendalas*

Step into the mystery of circular pattern drawing—it’s relaxing and fantastic! These tiles are astonishing and call for our best creative selves. Learn to create simple designs that pop in this new configuration! Fall into the rhythm of working in the round.

  • features Zendala tiles plus pens noted above 

Class 4

Crossing the Border 

Join in the fun of creating beautiful borders for frames, greeting cards, postcards, and more! Discover specific tangles that work well in this format. We will focus on making frames for photo cards. This is a great way to share your tangling skills to surround a special photo of your family or friends.

  • features notecards plus pens noted above

Series Dates: 1.11, 18, 25 & 2.1.22

Buy the package!

  • Package of all series classes with all materials sent to you one week prior to class (USPS in the USA) — $120 ($96.00 + $24 for all materials, postage, and handling). Register here.
  • Package of all series classes (without materials) — $96.00, Register here,

 

ZIA—Zentangle Inspired Art for Valentine’s Day 

It’s not doodling and it’s not scribbling —it’s Zentangle Inspired Art! Take the art of the Zentangle method for creating beautiful images by drawing repetitive patterns—and change it up! 

In this session, we will draw tangles within representational constraints. Bring your favorite image in outline form—a heart, your initials, your sweetie’s initials—you choose! We’ll fill it with patterns using our pen and pencil, making our own unique works of art! You will complete the session feeling relaxed and calm.

2.7.22

FREE Session, Register here

** No previous experience required

 

Appreciative Living Learning Circle

Imagine what it would be like to…

  • Energize yourself each morning with a positive, productive attitude for the day  ahead…in less than five minutes
  • Transform the negative thoughts and beliefs that keep you stuck and unable to create the life you truly want 
  • Develop stronger, smoother and more meaningful relationships with your spouse, family, friends  and co-workers
  • Recognize the potential good in ANY and EVERY situation  

Appreciative Living Learning Circles were created to do just that! You will learn an easy-to-understand, practical set of exercises that will change the way you see the world and help you become truly happier.  And best of all, it takes just a few minutes a day.  

4.9, 16, 23 & 30.22

Group ALLC – $149 + purchase book on your own. Register here.

Group ALLC for returning participants — $119 (20% discount), Register here.

Package — ALLC course + one 50 min coaching session – $349 (Group experience plus 20 % discount on the coaching session.) Register here.

Package of Group ALLC course + three 50 min coaching sessions – $749 (Group experience plus 20 % discount on coaching package of three sessions.) Register here.

 

Sharing the Highlights of Our Lives Visually 

When we make the time to think about the breadth and depth of our lives, there is so much to be remembered!

In this two-part workshop, we share what we know about writing obituaries and explore the topic of life stories. We learn about creating visual obituaries and use a variety of questions to spark memories. There’s time in between sessions to gather memories, photos, and materials and create your visual. We come together to share our creations and experiences with this life-affirming process.

3. 16 & 23.22

Register here.

 

Transformative Coaching—Appreciative Inquiry Lens + PQ/Positive Intelligence approach 

Available year-round!

Curious to learn more about this fascinating, fun, and life-changing work? Discover if this approach is the right fit for you!

Book a time for a complimentary strategy session, here.

Frame the way you want to see it! 

As the year comes to a close, we may focus our attention on the grief, pain, and trauma of the last 12 months. And, without question, we need to spend time, be/sit with, acknowledge, and work with those emotions. And, that’s not a one-time experience. Grieving over disappointments and difficulties, sickness, and death is a process, really inner work, that happens over time, and on no particular timetable. Being gentle with ourselves, living in the present, and opening up to finding a place in our hearts and minds for our losses is crucial.

I invite you to reflect on this past year—all of it—and then shift your attention to what you want to remember and carry forward with you. I have created a guided visualization to support you in remembering the bright spots—the people, projects, events, and connections—of this year. I’m happy to share the link* with you if you would like to listen and use it as a prompt for collecting your memories.

And, I’m wondering if you would like to join me for a session memorializing your memory. Here’s what I have in mind:

Tangling with Our Favorite Memory of the Year!

  • Find a photo or draw a picture of one of your favorite memories of 2021. While it can be any size, I’d suggest 5 x 7 inches (or smaller).  
  • Use a piece of card stock—white, cream, or black, 8.5 x 11 inches if your using a 5 x 7 photo/drawing/image… larger paper if you’re using a larger image because we will tangle the “frame” of our work.
  • Gather a Micron pen (01), a no. 2 pencil, tortillon/smudger/have your pink in hand (hahaha!), and if you’re working on black paper, gather a white gel pen, chalk pencil and if you’re feeling like it, silver or gold sparkly gel pen too.
  • Have scissors and ruler or paper cutter.
  • Lastly, glue stick, glue, tape, or zots.

We’ll tangle a frame around the photo of our choosing… be ready to work and play with new Zentangle patterns!

See you on Thursday, December 30th at 7 pm on Zoom. Sign up here for the session and guided visualization* (Zoom details will be sent following sign-up.)

 

Hoping to tangle with you on Thursday!

Musings on gratitude…

Here’s a peek into another facet of my life… I am in training to be a (Buddhist) chaplain. In my fieldwork for this role, I was asked by my supervisor if I wanted to step into the opportunity to prepare and deliver a service to the hospital community. While I was unsure of how to create such a piece of work, my interest was piqued by the challenge. As you can imagine, I said, “Yes!”

Here is my writing about gratitude that I shared in the chapel at the hospital yesterday, and that was broadcast on the hospital system (for those who turned to the designated channel). To my delight, (because there’s no way to know if anyone is watching on television) one of the patients I have met with several times mentioned that she was watching and enjoyed my service… who doesn’t love David Whyte, right? 

I hope that you will read my first attempt at this type of writing (not a sermon, not a dharma talk), and let me know what you think!

 

Wishing you, your family, and friends peace,

Jill

Friends, 

Good morning! Thank you for joining us this morning.

I feel both the delight and the weight of sharing thoughts and prayers with you before Thanksgiving.

Traditionally, the most wonderful aspects of this holiday are making time to acknowledge that for which we are thankful in our lives, and the gathering of our families—however, we define that—from near and far. We know, that in these current circumstances, we must navigate this Thanksgiving differently. Families may not come together as in years past — because we have lost loved ones, we want to keep ourselves or others safe, or the burden is too much to manage this year with changes in our life circumstances. 

I personally feel sadness and longing as I will not see half my family and many friends in person this year because we will remain distant with the hope that we may gather safely next year.

Though, as we come together this morning, we make time to pause and reflect on all we have experienced this year, there is much to consider. We can recognize the challenges and those experiences we were, and are, able to savor.

I’d like to share with you a few thoughts from one of my favorite poets. David Whyte, who explores gratitude as a quality of being, as a way of understanding ourselves in relationship to all that exists.

Perhaps we can think of Thanksgiving and beyond, to create more of a practice of gratefulness every day. I am inspired by Br. David Steindl-Rast when he shares, in A Grateful Day,

Do you think this is just another day in your life? It’s not just another day. It’s the one day that is given to you. Today. It’s a gift. It’s the only gift that you have right now. And the only appropriate response is gratefulness. If you learn to respond as if it were the first day in your life and the very last day, then you will have spent this day very well… Look at the sky. We so rarely look at the sky. We so rarely note how different it is from moment to moment, with clouds coming and going. Open your eyes, look at that. Look at the faces of people you meet. Each one has an incredible story behind that face not only their own story but the story of their ancestors… Open your heart to the incredible gifts that civilization gives to us. You flip a switch and there is electric light, turn a faucet and there is warm water and cold water, and drinkable water. A gift that millions and millions in the world will never experience.

And so I wish you that you will open your heart to all these blessings and let them flow through you. That everyone whom you will meet on this day will be blessed by you, just by your presence. 

Let the gratefulness overflow into blessing all around you. Then it will really be a good day.

And, so my question is, from my recent reading of Judy Lief’s work, 

  • What are we grateful for this year—both for what has and hasn’t happened?
  • What has gone well and what difficulties have you escaped?

Let me pause so that you may reflect and answer for yourself.…

Perhaps the gentle reminder of a prayer (from Thilini Ariyachandra ) will connect us with our beliefs so that we carry the thoughts and feelings within us through Thanksgiving day and beyond.

Let us pray in the name of all that is good.

May we all be well, happy and peaceful,

May no harm come to us,

May we all also have patience, courage, understanding, and determination to meet and overcome inevitable difficulties, problems, and failures in life.

May our parents, our teachers and mentors, our friends and may all living beings across the world…be well, happy and peaceful. May no harm come to them,

May they also have patience, courage, understanding, and determination to meet and overcome inevitable difficulties, problems, and failures in life.

Let us take a silent moment to add to this prayer with our own, personal prayer.

If you are a patient or staff member, we are praying for you.

In my role as a chaplain, I seek to embody these ideas from Tenzin Gyatso. 

May I become at all times, both now and forever
A protector for those without protection
A guide for those who have lost their way
A ship for those with oceans to cross
A bridge for those with rivers to cross
A sanctuary for those in danger
A lamp for those without light
A place of refuge for those who lack shelter
And a servant to all in need.

When you need or want support and care, reach out to those—chaplain, clergy, family member, or friend, who can offer you their presence, to be with you, to help lift your clouds of sorrow, and bring calming breezes that will strengthen your heart and soul.

And, so I ask the question that Mary Oliver posed years ago, “What is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life? My answer is, in part, that I will take up my gratitude practice again, noting each day three good events in my life and my explanations for them. And, I will start by saying thank you to all of you for being here with me and sharing your time with me this morning. It is a privilege and a joy to be here. 

Wishing you a Thanksgiving day full of warmth, connection, and gratitude, and for the days that follow.