When we were in Breckenridge, Colorado, a few years ago, to do a Songwriters Workshop, the townspeople told us about this annual Snow Sculpture event. Until I saw these photos, I didn’t realize just how spectacular it was!
Quick Game for Your Right/Left Brain
Take a moment to play this little Twinoo Game which is a quick and fun exercise to stimulate the right and left brain hemispheres.
You can try to solve only the left brain exercises (simple arithmetic problems) or you can focus on the right brain exercises, blending colors … or you can try to handle them both, and see how quickly you can go back and forth. I’m sure the more you do these, the faster you’ll get. (Either that, or get a splitting headache!)
If you want to delve deeper, I’ve found an excellent article by photographer, Michael Fulks, from ApogeePhoto.com, called Does Your Left Brain Know What Your Right Brain Is Doing?
Pigments – For Artists
Ever wonder, when you dip your brush into one of those smooth, creamy colors, just what did painters do before art shops made these gems so easily available?
“They are ground colored material. Early pigments were simply as ground earth or clay, and were made into paint with spit or fat. Modern pigments are often sophisticated masterpieces of chemical engineering….this exhibit includes most important pigments used through the early 20th century.” From the site: WebExhibits.org.
And while we’re at it, one of my all-time favorite places from which to order fabulous art supplies is Daniel Smith.
MakeZine.com: Current Issue
I was going to point out a good article for you from this new magazine, but I just couldn’t make up my mind which one. It’s a bit more for tech-heads, but good ideas come from everywhere.
“The first magazine devoted to digital projects, hardware hacks, and D.I.Y. (do it yourself) inspiration …”
MUPPETS – Flying Gonzo Stunt Game
Just like you, every now and then someone will send me a game. Later, I realize why they sent it to me.
You’ll do well with this one, for example, if you can continue to imagine a distance or measurement and keep it in mind as you play. I make it sound more complicated than it is. But it proves to be a unusual mental exercise and fun too.
Muppets – Fying Gonzo Stunt Game.
Thanks to John Gabree for sending this along.
Forget Me Not – The U.S. memory championship
Here’s an article about people who REALLY are good at remembering things … champions, in fact.
I found it particularly interesting that using visual images (the more vivid, the better) is key to establishing a lasting memory. Also that anyone can do this, with practice.
Forget Me Not – How to win the U.S. memory championship. By Joshua Foer
Songwriter/Performers – Women Only
In the early days of LASS (Los Angeles Songwriters Showcase — no longer around), I was puzzled by the fact that only about 1/4 of the writer/artists who auditioned were women.
We thought, maybe it was just because women weren’t as aggressive as men about promoting themselves and subjecting themselves to the rejection process in getting their songs heard by the music industry. We didn’t doubt for a minute though that there were as many women as men who were being musically and lyrically creative.
Today, the Internet has provided options for women to network and they have created and joined organizations for women songwriter/performers that offer moral and business support from other women. This may have been what was missing ‘back in the day.’ Here are some examples:
Informative articles, especially for women in the music business …
Rockrgrl magazine – “Supporting a Woman’s Right to Rock.”
Publisher/editor is Carla DeSantis in Seattle.
GoGirlsMusic, is an old hand at “Promoting Women in Music.” Madalyn Sklar started the organization in 1996 with a vision of bringing together independent women musicians from around the country. A welcome destination for women in music through networking and events.
Mamapalooza. “The Festival for Moms Who Rock!” I heard about this event on Nat’l Public Radio as they interviewed one of the bands on the air, “Housewives on Prozac” … so I HAD to look them up. Events are held in several U.S. cities.
Indiegrrl.com, “For Women in the Independent Music Industry.”
All genres of music. Indiegrrl was founded by Holly Figueroa in May of 1998 as a forum for information, networking, and conversation about independent music from a female perspective. They have about 1,300 members internationally.
Women in Music National Network promotes the development, advancement and recognition of women in the music industry. Committed to helping you build a successful career in the music industry by providing you with services to take your career to the next level. Our world-wide exposure offers you a network to many contacts and resources.
Register now for Song and Word 3-day retreats for women writers and songwriters. Maggie Savage and Sharon Wootton generously share their glorious scenery and home (with hot tub and grand piano, but not in the same room!) on Shaw Island — in the San Juan Islands, off the Coast of Washington. UPCOMING EVENT: April 29, 30 – May 1st, 2005 — GOOSING YOUR SONG MUSE Songwriting Retreat. Registration: 10 women only (due to limited facilities). Presentations on the Craft and Business of Songwriting, Co-Writing Tools, Creativity Exercises, and much more in a relaxing Pacific Northwest setting.
Pulitzer Prize-winning Photographs
What I like about this, is that you can view 16 Pulitzer Prize-winning photographs and also hear commentary from the photographers who have won journalism’s most prestigious award. (About 10 minutes in length.)
Perfect for Goosing Your Muse … thanks to John Gabree for sending this along to us.
New York Public Library – Free Online Images
Starting today, the New York Public Library Digital Gallery will make available online 275,000 images, to be increased to 500,000 images over
the next few months, that can be used freely for personal purposes.
This project has been several years in the making and includes everything from illuminated manuscripts to historical maps to vintage photographs — an extraordinary treasury of our visual heritage.
See article in today’s New York Times.
Stephen King – On Writing
Truth be told, I’ve stayed away from Stephen King’s books and films because they’re always so darned scary. But recently, my Belgian friend, singer/songwriter Hilde Sevens, put the book ON WRITING by Stephen King in my hand and suggested I check it out. She promised it wouldn’t scare me.
You may have read it already (it’s a few years old), but hey, good is still good. And it’s such a a pleasant surprise from an author famous for his horror stories.
Much of what Stephen King advises writers is similar to what we, John Braheny and I, cover in our seminars, but Stephen King embeds the writing lessons in his personal growing-up experiences, some of which are very funny. So, now, I guess, I’m a fan. But I’ll still watch his movies pulling a blanket up under my chin.
Here’s an article from the book, Everything You Need to Know About Writing Successfully: in Ten Minutes by Stephen King.