Tag Archives: creative visualization

Glass Art Student

Hilltop Artists: Supporting Creativity & Expression in Young Adults

A unique and inspiring art program exists in Tacoma, Washington, helping hundreds of young people each year.

Hilltop Artists is a non-profit glass arts program founded in 1994. The program teaches students classes in glass blowing, mosaics, fused glass, and even glass beadwork.

By encouraging positive creative and artistic expression, the Hilltop Artists program has a large impact on the future of its many students.

Artistic Glass Arts Program

Glass Art StudentPeople between the ages of 12 and 20 from Pierce County can be accepted into the Hilltop Artists program. Approximately 500 students are accepted each year, and many of them find the program a good way of connecting with others and expressing themselves in a positive way.

Hilltop Artists operates with the Tacoma public school system. A few of the schools in the division offer classes taught by Hilltop Artists instructors and some even operate an after-school or summer program.

Between 24 and 30 students are accepted each year to be part of the production team. This is a program where students work part-time in the evenings on various glass blowing, jewelry and bead projects, and even commissioned pieces. The products made by the production team are available for sale in the Hilltop Artists glass gallery, with all money raised going back into the program to keep it tuition-free for participants. There are also two annual sales held each December and June.

Hilltop Artists is always accepting tax-deductible donations and volunteer applications from people who are interested in contributing to this unique art program for youth.

The Impact of the Hilltop Artists Program

No student can have his or her application to the program refused because of lack of or level of artistic talent, any physical or mental conditions, or past behavior. As noted on the organization’s website, Hilltop Artists are “using glass art to connect young people from diverse cultural and economic backgrounds to better futures.”

There are many benefits of this unique program, including:

  • teaching students skills in a craft that has life-long potential as a hobby or career
  • helping with teaching students how to set goals, follow through on projects, and develop learning patience with themselves and others
  • giving students experience with working independently and as a team member
  • empowering students with the ability to design and create pieces of art
  • helping students with developing interpersonal skills through working with instructors and meeting new friends

Award-Winning Video

In 2012 a video produced featuring Hilltop Artists won a Telly Award. The Telly Awards were created in 1978 as a visual arts award celebrating and supporting creative community. Awards are granted for local, regional, and cable television programs, video and film productions, and online content production.

Watch the Inspiring Hilltop Artist’s Video

Love and Intuition Book is a Guide for Learning Your Love Type

Love and Intuition: A Psychic’s Guide to Creating Lasting Love (Llewellyn Publications) is a journey into the world of love and all that comes with it.

While many of us wander aimlessly day-to-day without knowing what will come next and how to find the love of our lives, Sherrie Dillard attests that we really can bring love into our lives—we just need a bit of guidance.

And Love and Intuition offers that guidance.

What’s Your Predominate Intuitive Sense?

Sherrie Dillard PictureDillard’s first book, Discover Your Psychic Type: Developing and Using Your Natural Intuition (Llewellyn Publications), provides guidance for readers to connect more deeply to their intuition by discovering which sense is their predominate intuitive guide. This way, they can learn to follow their inner guidance better and faster.

One reader stated:

Discover Your Psychic Type uses a Myers Briggs-like examination of your own inherent psychic abilities as one caring friend might accompany another. I found this book to be not only an enjoyable read, but one I will actually re-read and study for its fresh, encouraging, and effective approach to spiritual development. —Ruth M. Miller

You Can Attract Love

Love and Intuition is a quite amazing book, and you don’t have to read Dillard’s first book to benefit from this one. This 333 page, soft-cover book opens the mind’s eye to the revelation that we can all truly attract to our lives what we desire—even in the often confusing world of love.

With a little guidance to get you started, Love and Intuition will give you the start you need to uncover your authentic self and innate qualities. As you uncover the root of your essence you’ll begin to understand what you want in a partner.

Discover Your Personal Love Type

In this unique look into creating lasting love, Dillard first teaches the reader about their own selves—a real key in identifying love that lasts. Dillard claims that we are all intuitive; we are all psychic to one degree or another.

In Love and Intuition, Dillard gives real life ways for readers to understand just what kind of intuitive they are. She explains this as what kind of love type you are.

Which are you? Dillard explains the following love types then gives you tools to make an assessment of yourself:

  • Spiritual
  • Emotional
  • Physical
  • Mental

Love and Intuition BookcoverFirst know yourself, then comes your partner. Once you understand through Dillard’s light and easy-to-understand descriptions which love type you are and the love type your partner is, life will start getting interesting.

Applying what Dillard teaches you once you know your love type is the fun part. She provides exercises, examples, real life scenarios, visualizations, and even meditations to grow and nurture your love with that someone special.

All of what you’ll learn in these easy to understand and apply love lessons is based on your personal love type.

Love and Intuition also includes personal, light-hearted accounts from some of Dillard’s clients’ experiences relating to love, fidelity, sex, passion, intimacy, and other common relationship challenges.

When you open the pages of Love and Intuition you’ll intuitively feel the magic that waits for your relationship jump off the pages. This book is filled with insight, wisdom, and unique skills that promise to bring you the relationship of your dreams.

To learn more visit Amazon > Love and Intuition: A Psychic’s Guide to Creating Lasting Love

Healing Visions: A Film by Annie Gusman Joly

The following film and transcription follows the artistic expression of Annie Gusman Joly.

Annie describes her creative path and how starting in 1986when she attended classes at the Esalen Institutehow her relationship to painting deepened and opened a door to healing.

Perhaps her journey may provide inspiration for others to move beyond fear and channel their energy into a path of healing no matter what chosen medium to fuel a space for healing.

Annie Gusman Joly’s film, Healing Visions, is about how the act of painting has helped her heal emotional wounds.

Annie Gusman Joly’s Healing Visions

Painting of a Face by Annie Gusman JolyI started painting for myself in 1986.

I took a workshop at Esalen Institute, and when I arrived I had no what I was going to paint. I had been an illustrator over 10 years, and I was just feeling the need to paint for myself to do something different. I thought maybe I would paint the scenery. I was painting in a beautiful building on a cliff overlooking the Pacific Ocean, and I stood there with a giant white piece of paper and my hand just started to move. And I was totally amazed at what came out.

And the more I painted, the more came out. Even though the paintings were very dark as far as imagery, it was a great release to do them. It was discovering a whole new part of myself that I did not know had existed. When I look at the paintings now, it seems that I had some kind of awareness, some kind of precognition, because that year my mother committed suicide.

Using Intuition

People are afraid to paint because they don’t know where to start. Seeing that piece of white paper is very scary, but it is also very exciting at the same time.

I don’t think too much about what I am going to paint, I just try to go on intuition. Sometimes I just put a color down, and that color has a certain feeling which will make me want to put another color next to it.

After my mother’s suicide I felt like I was leading a double life: the internal life and the external life. It made me feel very separate from other people. As you can imagine it was a very, very dark and very difficult time for me. But I knew that I had to do something. I started to paint again, because I remembered how comforting the paintings had been to me when I painted at Esalen.

Healing Through Painting

Painting by Annie Gusman JolyIn one of my favorite paintings called “My Healer,” I realized that my healing was up to me. The paintings became a practice, like meditation . . . like dance . . . like poetry.

It’s very important to suspend judgment at the painting. I still occasionally look at something and say, like, “Oh, I don’t like that color. I think I’ll move this.” But now I think of it more as it’s only a part of painting that I don’t like, and I know that’s going to happen.

And maybe it’s just the tension in the painting that helps me move on, that helps me finish the painting. And I really try not to judge it as though I would if I went to museum.

It’s about those early paintings . . . there is a lot of demons flying around. And the demons are really scary at that point, I am really afraid. They look mean. They look angry, because that’s really how I am feeling inside.

As the months progressed, the demons became my friends. For example, after her death, I had an incredible dream. The dream was very scary at the time, but when I actually started to work on the piece, the whole mood, the whole character, of the painting changed into one of benevolence and compassion, and kindness and healing.

Listen to the Paintings Speak

In the early nineties, I met a man named Shaun McNiff. He taught me that it’s really not a good idea to talk about paintings, and that so many of us judge paintings according to somebody’s criteria. He taught me: don’t judge the painting. Don’t talk about the painting. It’s just as if the painting has a soul and a being of it’s own. So when I look at the paintings, what I do is pretend that they are actually a person.

For example, you wouldn’t talk about a friend who came into the room and said, “Wow, that dress looks really bad with those shoes,” you know, or, “That hat is really the wrong color.”

What I like to do is have the paintings speak to me.

Most of the time, I stand when I paint. I feel like if my whole body is involved rather than my hand and my brain, things seem to flow better.

When you paint with no judgment, things happen that you don’t expect. And it’s a journey. It’s like going on a trip to a foreign country, a place like you had never been before.

It’s almost like a door. It’s really not the grief any more; the grief is turned into a door. Where I know that these images will come . . . I just know that.

Speaking Truth

Annie Gusman JolyI think it’s easier to speak your truth when you are not doing something for money. These paintings were created for me; they came from a flow that was inside. So I feel free . . . I feel free to create what I want to create without worrying about the end result.

When I first started doing these paintings, I was little nervous to show them to people, because I thought they would think I was really strange, kind of crazy. Slowly, but surely, when I started to share them with some people, it was really amazing to hear their reaction. I think everybody relates to them in some manner in their own life. Everybody’s had loss, everybody’s had some problems.

I never feel like I run out of things to paint. I have an endless well of imagery that I feel now can come out at anytime. I never felt like this before I started these paintings.

When I’m in a room full of my paintings, I feel that I am with my best friends. It’s like something else is at work and things are not as they appear, and that there is another force going on within us. And that if we just can connect with . . . I don’t know, just makes me smile.

Angelic Beings Who Incarnate Into Human Form

Lea: Maybe you can point me in the right direction.

I read your discussion with Alana about angelic beings who incarnate.

In short, I have been told by three different psychic-intuitives that I am a “variety of angel” incarnated here.

I do have memories of comforting distressed souls in the soul realm — particularly after their life reviews — and I have memories of working with them and their guides to help them plan their next incarnations.

Naturally, I am interested in getting to the bottom of this! What I do know for sure is I have an insatiable desire to comfort and soothe others — always have! At the same time, I have always felt very, very different from others — almost like an anthropologist or missionary observing an unfamiliar tribe or something! I have always felt empathetically for others very, very deeply. Now that I have started to have these memories and now that several with psychic gifts have said my guides told them I was some type of angel — what should I do? I do truly wish to know who I am!

Kirk: Greetings, Lea. I’ll be happy to chat with you. We can learn into this conversation together as an interactive inquiry process.

Reflection on Surface of LakeMy first impression is that you seem very clear. As you know, information provided by psychics isn’t always accurate. That said, I don’t have any sense that you are “giving away your power” or “believing everything you hear.” Instead, my sense is that the information you have a attracted resonates with your inner sense of self. That is, you are engaging your discernment abilities and the external information mirrors your internal knowing.

You have memories of times between lives–at least incarnated lives–that I consider to be an advanced level of awareness. Wonderful!

You seem clear about elements of your “life purpose“–that which gives you joy. And it feels to me like you’re aware of some of your gifts.

You’re sharing above isn’t problem-oriented, but you have asked me a question: “What should I do?” So, here’s your first question from me: “What would you LOVE to do?” Instead of a specific job or career, I’m asking what kind of qualities you seek in your “doing.” What kind of activities might excite and nourish your heart and mind?

If you like, play with these musings, and let me know what arises in your being.

Lea: What do I love to do?

I know I love to comfort and encourage others. Actually, in crowds I find myself searching for those in emotional distress — I can sense it — and then sending love and hope to them. Also, I feel very strongly about forgiveness. I feel compelled to encourage others to forgive. I just bought a car and I am having a bumper sticker made for it that reads: “Forgive Everyone.” That excites me!

Secondarily, creativity brings me joy. I love to compose poetry and fiction. Since I believe I am here to express love, I think I will keep working on creative projects that do that.

But the other thing I love presents a greater difficulty — I feel an incredible longing for Spirit and for contact with those in Spirit. I have felt, from childhood, that I missed “my people.” It feels as if they are a unit of souls who do similar work — not necessarily the core soul group that we read about in Destiny of Souls and the like. I sense “my people” are engaged in service as am I. I have never known for certain who these colleagues are and I still do not, but I definitely await the reunion. It is probably the hardest part of my life to keep both feet on the ground and concentrate on this incarnation. It was once said of me among my friends, “She’ll actually be so much happier as a spirit once she’s on the other side.” Keeping my longing under control and living the life I came here to live is my hardest task.

Kirk: You seem very clear about your values of comforting and encouraging others, as well as forgiveness and creativity. And you also seem clear about some ways to express what you value, that which is important to you.

Sun Through Clouds on OceanI’d like to offer you some “homework” (home play) regarding your sense of wishing to feel more deeply connected to your “people. Have you learned how to craft positive affirmations and/or create useful visualizations? I’m imagining you might have one or both skills. If not, please let me know and I’ll include some links that will help.

My invitation is constructing an affirmation and/or creative visualization that presupposes constant connection (vs. separation) with your colleagues. Sure, you may one day experience some kind of “reunion” where you enjoy proximity in time/space, but this project is to learn your way into a somatic felt sense awareness of your “always already oneness” with this group, even when you are dwelling in a body. My encouragement is to build an affirmation and/or visualization that reminds you of this oneness beyond incarnation or time/space location.

If these sound / looks / feels useful to you, please let me know if you have any questions about how to proceed.

Lea: This is difficult, perhaps because as I write this tonight, my longing for connection to “My People” and to the soul realm is so intense that it’s psychically painful. I feel the way a bird must when everything within it strains to fly south, but it cannot because it is shut up in a box somewhere and must “tough out” the overwhelming urge to fly home. <long sigh>

But I do have a few coping measures, including the suggestion you gave me.

First, I know my name — my real name — the one I am called in the soul realm. When being “Lea” becomes hard, I remember my name and meditate on it. That helps.

Second, I try to focus on the people I am here to nurture and heal. If I indulge too much longing, I am in danger of self-pity, and I do not want to allow that. Being here is a wonderful chance to enjoy serving human beings. Serving them is a beautiful experience.

Third, I am working on your suggestion of “As if.” When I have those difficult moments, I build on a vague memory I have of being in some type of huddle with my colleagues and sharing, for lack of a better term, a group hug. I remember this and try to call it to greater vividness.

Fourth, I can meditate and “plug in” to the Almighty. As is true of all souls, God is my source and my resource. God is my origin, and I find the most comfort in letting myself get lost in God’s deep love.

I still feel, at times, a little disoriented and a little stranded. I would like more information about my soul’s history.

Kirk: Glad you’re finding my suggestions useful, combined with your many awarenesses.

Road Into MountainsInteresting that knowing your “spiritual name” is helpful to you. I’ve heard this from many people who share many of your experiences.

I like your perception of the relationship of self-pity to service, especially is you’re reminding yourself serve in self-loving and kind ways. In my view, you did choose to incarnate at the date, time, and place of your birth, and within your culture, environment, family system, body, etc. You might as well “bloom where you’re planted,” so to speak. Yes?

Cool that the “As If” frame of perceiving is a tool you’re wanting to more deeply explore. It’s very powerful, in my experience, and part of the “plugging in” process you described.

Regarding the disoriented/stranded experience, it can really help to do simple, somatic/body-oriented practices that connect your body to the earth. The Yoga sun salutation and Qigong movements come to mind, and of course, there are many others, most of which center around awareness of your breath.

It can be fun, even useful, to know some of your soul’s history. Mostly, it’s “mind” that likes to know this stuff. This isn’t a judgment of “mind”–I’m into loving my mind, along with all aspects of self, in and out of the body. If you seek at an intuitive reader, I encourage you to always retain your personal power — rather than abdicating it to an “expert” — and always use your own discernment to determine the information that feels valid for you, releasing what isn’t. It’s the rare psychic/intuitive who can read this type of information accurately. It’s very easy to just make things up — either as blatant cons/lies or as well-intention but inaccurate assessments — so I urge you to be very picky about your information sources.

I’ve been enjoying our chat. Is there anything with which I can help?

Lea: After much meditation and thought, I realize I am no longer in need of validation about the nature of my soul. It was indeed startling to me and at first confusing when I began to have so many people tell me my soul was angelic in nature. I was skeptical and seeking confirmations. The confirmations I was hoping and waiting for have come to me, and I am now satisfied. Now that I know who I am, I intend to turn my attention to the thousands of reasons I am incarnated here: the people who need my love and support. Although I myself do learn and grow each day, I know as deeply as it is possible to know *anything* that I am principally here to uplift others. That is my bliss! 🙂

Kirk: Wonderful. I enjoyed our dialogue. I hope the angels who are attracted to this article receive inspiration to even more deeply discover their authentic self.