A few days ago I created this video for fun. I love creating and video is such a great way to get a message across. My creations are more than stories and pictures, they are concepts that encompass emotions and thought. A sophistication that reveals a story through imagery.
My philosophy stems from my belief that children are more intelligent that we might expect. They see with different eyes, and this is why I love working with them.
Enjoy, and as always please like my posts and leave a message to show your appreciation. :)
I’m writing to let you know that I’m still active on my blog. It’s been a hectic year with lots happening so I haven’t found the head space to create as much as I used to. Soon I’ll have 6 weeks of holidays to use up for all the things I enjoy doing. Have you ever found yourself in that place?
Although I’ve been productive in other ways by editing a novel I’ve written for many years now. I followed some advice from a friend and changed it from third person to first person. This has allowed me to see a different perspective in the character and develop my writing. What’s even better is when I change it back again to third person, then back to first person in the editing process. I know this sounds tedious, but I’d rather do the editing myself because I don’t want to lose my voice. Plus I could develop the characters and storyline through editing. So this has given me a whole new outlook on editing; it’s not about doing a spell check and correcting grammar. In fact, I see it as the most important part of writing so I need to do it myself. And best of all, it’s most effective when done bit by bit, refreshing my mind daily before I continue again. So like a fish gulping air out of water from time to time, I used my crazy tight schedule to my advantage.
Interestingly, included a storyteller who tells some parts in third person. The third person disappears through the story as the main character becomes more and more independent, reflecting her growth as she finds her own voice. There’s something special about the relationship of these two storytellers. They set the tone for the underlying theme of relationship building in the story.
It’s wonderful to experiment in this way in a novel. Some might say it’s wrong but this doesn’t stop me because I want to create a different genre. It’s definitely a story with a mix between fiction and real events. The best way to describe it is that it’s like a very long prose that develops its character, coming alive within the boundaries of a storyline.
Such is life.
The wonderful part is that I’m growing as a writer and a person, as I learn about myself. I write more simply and let the words do the talking. I’m not only finding my style but creating it. I’m off now to do the daily things life demands, then looking forward to editing more of my chapter.
Most importantly, thank you for following my blog and for all your likes and comments. Tell me how your writing’s going? Blogging is such a great way to get inspiration from each other and am so lucky to be making like-minded friends.
I have no voice
But I love to dance.
I’m a mute.
But I love to dance
I cannot do.
But I love to dance.
I don’t belong
But I love to dance.
The answer is dance,
I must dance.
I’ve tried many things
But I always turn to dance.
Every day I dance.
I think and sense dance.
Dance refreshes my mind
When I feel nulled
I turn to dance!
I was made to dance.
I remember to breathe and then I dance.
My life is a dance.
I’m soothed, I’m real
I am dance.
Random thoughts after an intense 5 weeks of avoiding my passion.
Not because I wanted to, but because circumstances forced me to.
I forced myself to.
And I was given a wake up call.
My innocent mind failed me once more.
But kindness of heart prevailed.
I cannot stop what I love.
I don’t fit in that box they tried to place me in.
Now I know the reality of love and I can return to my artist self.
I cannot escape my artist self.
Now the hardest part is waiting,
But I am relaxed because I know.
So many thoughts are running through a mind. But the truth never hides.
My ideals are challenged, I’m not the mature person I thought I was. I’m in Europe. I ponder on a place where I can be alone, but not lonely. I put myself in that place. But it doesn’t quite work. I seek approval upon every stage of my life. I reject notions of my inadequacy, regroup and fight for another day. I’m in Europe, the mirror that plays with my self concept and my image. How have I grown after being away for a whole year, my friend?
I search back on my art, my past up until now and I see that I did well not to rush too much. I did a lot and I see the products of these but now I am very different. Imagine if I’d rushed, I would see more of these flaws that represent stages of growth. I would laugh at myself then curl up and die. But no, I created just enough to represent myself at a given space of time.
Art is like an anecdote of an expression in a given time. If I do it, I can look back on it perhaps and wonder who it was that did it.. like it wasn’t the person I am now. If I didn’t do it, it is like losing this part of myself that once was. One must if they are an artist, there is no why. And now I juggle this thought as I write, wondering who I am and who I will become, what will I be thinking when I read back on this piece of writing.
I’ve often stated that travel gives me a sense of perspective. But this is only valid for the present time. The future will forget because of its irrelevance and will then make up some other story, and I would have forgotten all that I did. But the feelings will stay strong and I will yearn to have these again. I will want to return again. And my anguish when I can’t, will then become the inspiration for my writing, my art, the way I see the world. It is the part of Europe I take with me, and it becomes a part of me. But this is false, Europe is my friend.
I have written a novel and I continuously go back to it and change it, but it doesn’t work. This is my anecdote in a particular place in time. The time I was in Europe. It’s hard to write about a lifetime, and I did it in the best way I knew how. I wrote it like a dance, reflected in a piece of writing that is much like a poem, that jumps from moment to moment without one realizing, and expresses emotions and not compact events. I think about whether anyone would want to read it, and cringe at the thought. It’s not really for an audience. I don’t think they’d get it or perhaps they’d be bored by it, think it outdated. Who knows. But I want it to be available, just so that this part of me, is preserved because it was so beautiful. I can hear the words in my mind.
My past writing is like a mirror I don’t want to look into at first but when I do, I am pleasantly surprised. I can’t imagine doing it all again. It would be impossible, and it wouldn’t be the same. And how wonderful to look into it and play!
What colour is your ball?
Is it a blue, is it a brown?
Is it yellow? Is it red?
Is it a mix of both?
How it is that you feel?
What feelings do the colours represent to you?
Green could be frightened, blue could be brave!
Yellow could be happy and orange could give you a frown!
All emotions and colours are beautiful.
If you know the password, enter it on the official Poems That Dance page and it will take you to the full version video telling. The password is the last word on the last page of the book.
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There’s a game that goes with this book and I’ll be posting it soon!
I danced like no one was watching
I sang like no one was there
I watched like I was penetrating
I rewrote the words again
but they remained the same
in my head
Shocked I returned to a familiar place
All I expected was gone
Upon visits I didn’t realize
Upon settlement I knew
The predictable rhythm of life
And found you
I want to look beautiful
The day I die
Become lost and find myself
Mix with my fellow people
& dance the traditions
I used to play music often
As I danced to it
I imagined my past belonging to it
The image created love for my soul
I was free
A soul friend
Will always be
She will dance with you
Like no one’s watching
& sing like no one’s there
I watched as she penetrated my soul
I smiled for a glimpse of a moment in time
& ultimately discovered
She was me
Maria Grujicic copyright 2012
This is a poem about finding myself, the real me.
I often have to remind myself that writing is a solitary act. This is what I found the most difficult because sometimes I lack the time, which affects my discipline to write. People around me are doing lots of fun things. They hang out with their friends, go out, and so on. I start to feel that I’m missing out, but I need the solidarity to write my poems. I’ve had to battle with myself about writing because I sometimes think maybe this is selfish, self-centered. But when I force myself to do anything else, it doesn’t work out. I have a hunger to write. I idiotically keep a notebook and pen, in fact lots of pens, in my bag. Out popped all the different kinds of pens from my bag I took from people and forgot to return, just yesterday. You know the scenario.. LOLz I needed that pen.
And so perhaps I was born to write, perhaps not, I don’t want to dwell on that riddle. What I do know is that I love to do it, and no matter what anyone thinks of my work, it will never stop me, because it is who I am. And I discovered that finding myself is the greatest gift I can have, and only I can give this to me.
I created a mask and wondered why human beings love to dress up and play. I made a sad face on one side of the mask and a happy side on the other side, showing opposite feelings. I took care making it and afterwards realized that the sad face was just as beautiful as the happy face. I developed the idea that all emotions are beautiful because it is what makes the person’s character. I felt that having an understanding of why we have certain feelings allow children to have a positive self concept and be more in control of solving problems. This idea makes children feel accepted and accepting of others.
At dance class I noticed the children looking in the mirror and wondered why they were doing this. I wondered what they were thinking. Perhaps the children were playing with their emotions along with acting out the character of their dreams. They wanted to see what that looked like and it was why they were looking in the mirror. There were lots of balls everywhere and I noticed the pattern of movement. They threw the balls away from them and ran to catch them. The spontaneous choreography that occurred was delightful to watch.
At school I used a small tennis ball and passed it around the group. I asked children to choose a colour of their ball and imagine a character. One child said, “Colour my ball, colour my ball and makes a wish! Colour my ball blue. Blue is the colour of a wizard.” The next child wanted to be a princess. At a later lesson I used different coloured play dough. I demonstrated the idea of mixing colours that represented a particular emotion. This was a trial of another concept in the illustrations in the book. The first page is a mix of white and black. The second page is a mix of red and white. The third page mixes red with another colour. Read the book and see the rest of the colours. The colours mix and the friends come together at the end. Another interesting aspect of the choreography was how they played in parallel to each other. The dance instructor gave them ideas and comments, and encouraged certain children to pair up. The children came together at the end to form a circle.
The children made a mask of their favourite character using the mix of colours to represent their feelings. They carefully designed the mask because when the feelings get too mixed up it is hard to see them. Feelings don’t stay the same all the time. They mix and turn, and it was a good way to experience this visually and in a hands on way. All feelings are beautiful, we are beautiful was the main message of the project. For the mask they chose 2 contrasting feelings to draw, and the colours were feelings that complimented them. Feelings weren’t as straight forward as sad and happy. They were “yellow makes me feel safe because it keeps me away from the dark.” Recently this was a comment one of my year 2 students made after reading the class novel, Komiko And The Dragon. It was insightful to her personal response of the characters in the book of which she could relate to.
Lena Truper and I are good friends. We met at tribal fusion dance class and began working with Gala Yakovleva, our dance teacher with the children’s classes. What interested me was that Gala had a philosophy of dance where the participants created the dance. Gala applied the same dances and philosophy with the children’s and adult classes. The characters relate to my personal life of which I wrote a novel that I probably will never publish because of how personal it is. I used the novel as a feeder of my ideas as I recollected events and emotions, and applied them into the present and future.
The wizard is my father. He told me stories and did creative projects with me as a child. Whenever I had a problem, he may not have had a solution but he knew what to say to make me feel better and think about life. The butterfly is the symbol of my mother. From a caterpillar I saw her life grow into a beautiful butterfly and a nurturer of her children. She is more beautiful as she grows. The ageless, timeless quality of a piece is what makes it unique and everyone, regardless of age can relate to the story. The princess is the character I always wanted to be but never thought it possible. The prince is the yellow shadow, and that’s another story. I have a story to share about all the characters in the book!
It was a pleasure to work with Lena. Lena is an excellent listener and observer, and picked up on the connection of the storyline and my personal life. When I saw Lena’s drawings I knew she was the right person to do them because she saw the world in a different way. I wanted Lena to take ownership of the drawings and create them in her own unique style. Lena played with my first sketches that I showed her and developed the ideas. Lena has an innate understanding of book illustration. She connected the pages by an animal that changed. She picked up on details such as the socks. Our friendship grew as we continued to inspire each other and it is why this book has personal value to me.
I created this video to show some aspects of how the book was created. Feel free to post comments and ask any questions. My next goal is to illustrate my own book. I have many other picture book ideas and have been working with video, creating music and dialogue, and photography. I love mixing mediums together and would like to look more into multimodal texts.
ENJOY AND Happy Holidays to Everyone!
Details and character were emphasized.
Showing contrasting emotions.
A paper plate was used to represent the ball.
This doubles up as a tail and a mask.
Details such as a leash were added.
Children experimented with mixing colours and design.