Thursday, October 28, 2010
Thursday, October 21, 2010
Our GEMS feature showcases women who are tapping into their unique talents and breathing life into their dreams.
GEMS stands for:
The women who are showcased as PLPT GEMS are accessible examples of women who are doing interesting things, overcoming challenges, expressing themselves and making a difference in a unique and beautiful way.
As they share their stories, we hope that you will read something that inspires you to reflect, laugh, cry, dare, question, create, understand, and most importantly - get involved. The world needs your perspective and your contribution. When you focus your energy on a goal that reaches beyond personal gain into a context larger than yourself, there are no limits to what you can create.
PLPT GEMS presents ~ Carla b. Jupiter
Artist. Creator. Free Spirit.
1. What is your passion and what is your outlet for it?
I'm most passionate about staying true to my life path, living my life's purpose, mainly through creating my soulful and funky paintings and spreading the positive messages within each piece. But I'm an all around creator, so I'm all about creating my own paths and opportunities, if I can bless others along the way, even better.
2. How did you get started? How did you prepare yourself?
I've been a lot of things in my life, but the only thing that has always been a constant for me was art. I was always an artist, I just went back home. My mom always loves to tell the story of how I shocked her with my artistic abilities at the age of two. I don't remember that of course. But in school I was the kid who always daydreamed and drew pictures instead of listening to the teacher. Crazy thing is, as a kid I never imagined myself growing up to be an artist, and even became disconnected from it at one point, especially during my teen years. I always knew I was different but I was too busy being caught up in the matrix. In my beginning adult days I started out trying to be all these things that I thought the average person was "supposed" to be.
By the time I was twenty five I woke up, accepted the fact that I was far from average and started realizing that my art could very well be on someone's wall just as I often saw the same paintings/prints in different homes. I began to identify with this and and decided to run with it. I started painting every chance I got. My first painting was a piece I quickly did to improve a bare wall in my house; I was living in DC at the time. In the beginning my paintings didn't really look anything like they do now and there were times when I didn't know exactly where I was heading as an artist, but I knew I needed to keep honing my skills. So that's what I did. As an artist, preparing yourself is an ongoing process. Your constantly learning and growing. So I guess you can say I'm in constant preparation, but looking back, I've come a long way.
3. What obstacles did you have to overcome?
I think for me, a lot of obstacles came from dealing with other people, especially when trying to grow. It's sad, but most negativity came from those closest to me. From those who couldn't see my vision, to those who tried to throw wrenches in my plans, to those selfish energy vampires. I'm very sensitive to people's energies, so I have learned to be careful who I'm around. Then there were times when I didn't have the resources to do all that I wanted to do, like build my own website but couldn't afford a website building application. My earlier art images were pretty poor because I couldn't afford a really good quality camera. And in the art world quality images are everything. I learned to work with what I had until I received what I needed. Everything happens for a reason.
4. Is your passion your full time occupation? if not, how do you balance it with the your other responsibilities?
It just recently become a full time thing, it was not always this way. As of yet, I really don't have balance. Its still something I'm striving for, I could really use a set schedule, that's one of my goals. When I did work I found myself up late nights trying to squeeze in painting time. Now that I no longer work a job, funny thing is, I'm still up late most nights painting. And once I start a painting I usually can't break myself away from it until it's complete, so other aspects of life sometimes get neglected. I have a teen daughter also, so I'm always between guiding and ensuring she has a creative foundation to follow her own life purpose and making time for my life purpose. That's usually when those late nights come in handy. All in all, I know I can't do everything myself, I try to incorporate outside help whenever I can. That gives me more time to concentrate on painting.
5. How do you stay motivated and overcome doubt, fear and negative thinking?
My art is like a drug, so I really can't stop. When I'm not painting, I'm thinking about painting! For me, there is no other way. I really don't suffer much from doubt or negative thinking when it comes to my art, because I intuitively know everything will fall into place. This is how it is when you are on a true life path, it has been so much bigger than me. When it comes to fear, I'm human, but I refuse to be paralyzed by fear. I prefer to face it head on. It may take me a little longer when fear is there but I will face it. My desire to go places by far out weighs my fear!
6. What advice would you offer to others who are searching for their purpose or are afraid to take the first step towards their dreams?
Go for it! Especially if you have strong convictions about it. If you can't take a leap of faith due to responsibilities(which is understandable), ease your way into it. Research and learn as much as possible about what it is you want to do whenever you can. Try and surround yourself around like minded individuals, or those who are already in the area of what you want to do. There will always be naysayers, let it go in one ear and out the other, brush it off, be strong and always believe in yourself! When trying to find your purpose, looking into your childhood usually holds clues. If there is something you can't stop thinking about, or that one thing you enjoy doing so much that you could even do it without pay and still enjoy it, this could very well be your life purpose. You just have to manifest it to work for you. If all else fails there is always prayer, ask God to show you your life purpose. I'm a firm believer in ask and you shall receive. Last but not least, there are no mistakes, only lessons and opportunities to come back bigger and better!
7. Name someone who has inspired you and why.
I came across a picture of Michelle Obama once where she was draped in blue. I couldn't get this image out of my mind, it was memorable and touching, something about that blue too. I created the painting "Mother Supreme". It isn't her, but Michelle Obama was definitely an indirect inspiration.
Carla Byrd-Estrada, aka “Carla b. Jupiter” is a NYC based artist that keeps her art down to earth, soulful & funky. Expressionism with an urban edge that people can not only relate to, but have access to. Working mainly with acrylics, she blends color, shape, and form, celebrating the love of life, dreaming, long summer days, friendship, roots, learning, and positive growth. Each piece of art carries with it, a moment, thought, or emotion, through it’s vibrant liveliness and movement, concentrating in the area of all things positive. Her work has been featured throughout NYC and can be found at several retail locations. She curates several art exhibitions throughout the year, providing business and artist opportunities while linking art with communities. In 2009 she started b. Jupiter Studio, and signs all her paintings Carla b. Jupiter. You can visit her online at http://www.carlabjupiter.com/
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
There are several methods to aid us in visualizing the lives we want. One such method is meditation. For the past couple of weeks, I have tried to begin every day in meditation. It spans anywhere from 5 – 20 minutes depending on how much time I have, but it helps me to zero in on my focus for the day and jumpstarts the flow of inspiration. During these moments, I practice visualization. I create a mental picture of how my day will go. I conjure pictures of myself within my dream life: with my family, in my relationship, my career, my future home and even my future office. I imagine how I will feel surrounded by these things/people that I did the work to manifest. Then I work my way backward, asking God/Universe/Life to handle the specific details, but to provide me with guidance on how to work to create this life now.
There are no limits on which goals we can visualize to bring to pass. We can even visualize the smallest details of our lives. Two weeks ago I was inspired to change up the energy in my bedroom by moving around the furniture, reallocating space and storage and getting rid of things that I no longer need. I spent the past two weeks creating a vision of exactly how the space will look and feel when I'm finished and I've spent 2 days so far bringing it to pass. It is still a work in progress, but when complete, I'll have a new space to create in and be inspired by.
So how do you visualize? It’s kind of like “playing imagination” as you did when you were a child. Picture yourself doing what you love and revel in the feeling attached to it. Picture what you’ll wear or how you’ll do your hair. Get so excited about the prospect of having this thing in your life that you feel like you have it already. And when you come out of your meditation, take pictures of things you want and post them where you can see them; write about your dreams; jot down key words or phrases that make you feel the way you’ll want to feel when your dream comes to pass. The more you put out into the Universe what you desire, the more you will attract the necessary thoughts, ideas, perceptions, people, opportunities, etc. that will help you to achieve that goal.
Is meditation a part of your daily routine? Have you successfully brought something positive into your life using visualization—even if you didn’t recognize it as such when you did it?
Friday, October 15, 2010
I wrote this post for my personal blog this week and decided to share it here on Peace, Love and Pretty Things, as well. Chic Mommy and I have both fully transitioned to natural hair, but are continuing to transition in other areas of our lives. It's a very exciting time. We look forward to continuing to share our growth and endeavors with you here.
For those of you who aren't aware, you can read more from Chic Mommy on her fashion blog Chic Mommy, Cool Kid. You can also read more from GG on my personal blog, The Write Curl Diary.
For now, have a great weekend and I hope this post encourages you, for I was definitely encouraged by writing it. xoxo
And life is a waiting game
don't you know that,
peace must be nurtured..."
~Seasons Change by Corinne Bailey Rae
Monday, October 11, 2010
"What I know for sure is that what you give comes back to you."
She is abundance personified, isn't she?
By rich, I mean in love and happiness, and by quick I mean it takes some time. I got your attention though, right? Hear me out. Once you start changing your thoughts to believe there is enough love and success to go around in this world, your realities will change drastically and you will become rich. I've been working on this for a long time, and like any other change, this can't happen overnight. When I think back, however, I realize that I've changed drastically. Even as a "positive person", most of my thoughts were centered on lack. We can change this pattern if we make up our minds to do so - it starts with the littlest things.
1. Start and end the day with gratitude. Many of us were raised to pray daily. But how were we taught to pray? I can remember always praying for things. I would give thanks, but I was always praying for God to intervene and fix something. However you choose to center yourself and connect with Spirit, whether it's prayer or other methods, be sure to focus your energy on gratitude for everything that is going on in your life. Be thankful for the awareness that everything that happens is natural and beneficial. Pray for strength and peace no matter what situations evolve.
2. Manage jealousy and competitiveness. There is enough love to go around. I think I should say that again - there is enough love to go around. Instead of feeling jealous of someone else's success, be motivated by it. Convert any negative energy into positive energy by giving compliments and supporting those who are doing what you want to do. If you are waiting to meet that special someone, and it seems that everyone around you is coupling up and getting married, don't let those yucky feeling get the best of you. Be patient and faithful, believing that this is just one aspect of your life and the best thing you can do to attract someone special to work on yourself. Jealousy will create bitterness inside of you, which won't attract anything good!
3. Trust that you have all the money you need. This is a tough one. We all want more money, don't we? Until we learn to manage and appreciate what we have, we will not successfuly gain and MAINTAIN more. I've struggled with money management for most of my adult life, and have just started cleaning things up in the last couple years. I would spend money as if it was literally going to run away from me if I didn't hurry up and spend it. This comes from a mentality focused on lack. When we adopt a mentality of abundance, we always have enough and we create the space to have more. Try it and see for yourself.
4. Make your dream your most habitual thought. Instead of your thoughts centering around unpaid bills, loneliness, an unfulfilling job - think about the life that you want. Think about it all the time. See it. Dream it. Feel it. Imagine how it will feel to make your dreams become reality. You may not know how it will happen exactly, but you should spend ample time thinking about why this is the life you want to lead and use these thoughts as motivation. Take steps in the right direction and don't give up. This is the determined path of winners - they work through their fear of failure and believe in their dreams religiously.
5. Learn to be a giver. Even when you think that you have nothing left, give. Whether it's your time, a kind word, or a sympathetic ear. Learning to give will set you up to be ready and worthy to receive. When we cling to ourselves and our things, we are once again embracing the idea of lack. Don't listen to the messages that dominate this world and tell us that there is not enough and we must cling to our own. When we give our time and our energy to each other, we create a cycle of generosity that gets bigger and bigger as more of us adopt this philosophy. When you think of yourself as rich, and you give as though you were rich, you will receive in kind.
"When your mind is an abundance of ideas, when your hearing is an abundance of love, when your life is an abundance of good people doing good things with and for you, you are rich beyond words. Abundance begins in mind, extends to deeds and brings rewards you can bank on even if you cannot put them in the bank." - author unknown
Do you have any affirmations that you use to help train your mind to think abundance? Do you find it hard to quiet the messages of lack that surround us in this world? This post is a short list of ways to start changing your thinking. If you'd like to hear some specific affirmations that you can say, or other methods to learn this abundance mentality, please let us know in the comments.
Wednesday, October 6, 2010