Sacred Geometry for Happinez Magazine...

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Here is my latest work for Happinez Magazine, featured in their Zomer (Summer) edition, just out now. The assignment was to create 8 photographs of sacred geometry, with a handmade, organic and natural touch. It was actually very challenging, but so much fun. Researching the meaning behind each symbol was interesting, and coming up with unique ways to show these symbols had my mind in a twist. I went with the flow of the twist, and it all eventually unravelled, creating these photographs over about 4 days in the studio...

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The idea was to start with the simple shapes like square, circle and triangle, and then progressing to the more complex symbols like the dodecahedron, octahedron, tetrahedron, icosahedron. Everything from this shoot I made from materials I had already in my home (like the collection of marbles from my childhood) and studio, as well as fallen flowers and branches from the neighbourhood...

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These perspex cubes were part of my old stylist's kit - I'd had them made about ten years ago. I love the play of nature with them here, the soil and roots and sand make the shot. 

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This gorgeous Japanese handmade dodecahedron was given to Laly by my dear friend Kylie on one of her trips to Japan a few years ago. When I have a commissioned shoot like this, I walk through my house looking for inspiration, and when I saw this on Laly's shelf I knew it had to be in this shoot, and it made me smile to know that it was given by Kylie, so special. The bougainvillea grows in abundance at the entrance of my studio building, and combined with this fabric from Major & Tom, this became my favourite photograph of the collection. 

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And then came the biggest challenge of all: the mother of all symbols, the icosahedron. This was the only symbol I didn't have a plan for, and left it completely up to my intuition to figure it out. Which was apt - the icosahedron symbolises water, which is as we know all about movement, flow and change. It's also connected to emotions, and can be used to enhance the creative process. The process for creating this was beautiful - I played with different materials, and then before I knew it I was being guided to paint some bamboo skewer sticks with streaks of white, then I cut them into sets of equal lengths and laid them ever so carefully onto this stunning backdrop - a lightly waxed indigo dyed piece of fabric given to me as a gift from one of my mentor clients, Bernadette. I love that these beautiful handmade gifts that I've lovingly received over the years have become a part of my work, it shows the power of the collective and how we can enrich each other's creativity (remember this little velvet box?).  Through this process, I didn't know what the outcome was going to be - I didn't see the end result and then work toward it, instead I allow each step to happen with absolutely no knowledge of what is about to transpire. I understand some people become frozen with fear if they don't have a concrete plan for everything, but I get excited. To me it shows there is so much room for possibility, and my intuition is free to play. I placed eucalyptus buds at each point. The second shot here I just love - I messed up the pieces to show the transience, which for me is just as beautiful - to create beauty, and then let it go. 

I made some video footage of the behind the scenes which I'll put together and share on my Patreon page for those who are interested in the behind the scenes. 

xx

 

 

Feel like a weekend away staying in my private artists studio?

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I'm now opening my private artist's retreat for weekend stays. This unique space is ideal for a creatively-minded single or a couple wanting an artist's retreat experience, holiday, or short term business trip.  It's a beautiful sun-filled one bedroom apartment close to the bay in the heart of Balmain. In a secluded location surrounded by palm trees, it is a minute walk to the ferry to get into the city or Cockatoo Island, and a minute to Darling St: the main shopping street full of wonderful boutiques, bars, art galleries and restaurants. For more photographs & information, please click here. 

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Bookings made through Patreon receive special additions, so please check out the rewards on my Patreon page and join the creative collective....

Vivent Les Artistes!

With love, 

Pia xx

 

Issue Two: Happi.Kidz photo feature...

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In January this year I was commissioned to create another feature story for the next issue of  Happinez magazine's Happi Kidz. The brief was to create eight images that express how animals can give strength to a child's life, not just in literal terms, but spiritually. What I love most about shooting for Happinez is the creativity involved in coming up with unique ways to represent ideas  - rather than selling products or a look, it's all about ideas. As is our way of working together, I came up with a few ideas based on image editor Albertine van den Brink's brief, drew up a storyboard, ran it by Albertine via email and then got to work bringing the ideas to life. The magazine was published last month, and it's a delight to know that once again, my hero shot of gorgeous first time model Otis, was chosen for the cover.

There was much to make for this shoot, creating four completely different sets. But I had another wonderful assistant, this time it was my dear friend Kaspia's beautiful sister, Lisa! Who is also the mother of Otis. Both her boys came to the shoot at my house, and they were such a delight - between these awesome young boys and Freya from my last shoot, my reluctance to shoot kids has been lifted...

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If you'd like to see all the photographs from the shoot, and learn more about the creative processing, I have composed two patron-only posts on Patreon:

1. giving patrons the opportunity to ask any questions  - nothing is off limits - to be able to dive deep into the creative process involved in each shot creation, along with a video compilation of some of the behind the scenes of each photograph. 

2. the idea of animal totems & spirits, and how their power can enrich your everyday life - relevant for both children and adults - how to ignite confidence, courage, love, and more. 

The magazine is out now in The Netherlands. Thank you to Lisa, Otis, and Marcel for your wonderful assistance and for helping to make the day so pleasurable. If you'd like to see my past work with Happinez, please click here and here.

Credits:

Producer,  Prop Designer, Photographer & Stylist: Pia Jane Bijkerk
Photographer & Stylist's Assistant: Lisa Taylor
Backdrops from Major & Tom
Model: Otis Taylor

MY HEART LANGUAGE...

Visual storytelling is my heart language, and I’ve been learning, nurturing and refining my expression of it for over twenty-five years. I love expressing my life experiences, world events and ideas in unique ways. I find pathways to worlds of wonder we only dare dream about, and weave those dreams into our everyday reality.  I am often told I change people’s lives through my storytelling. When I write or share a story, my aim is for my audience to listen with their whole bodies. I want to ignite the fires in our hearts, connect us to our intuition and open to a world where we live and thrive within our creative genius.

I want to be able to continue expanding this energy I have out into the world. Most people don’t realize how much time and energy goes into creating work of this nature. Over the past few months I’ve been working intently to find a way to be able to recover the sense of freedom I need to be able to create, that fits with my integrity and ethos. My mantra this year has been “no matter what, I will find another way”… I've needed to dissolve one of the biggest blocks I've had in order to make this happen, but I've done it, I have found another way...

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I’d like to welcome you to my new hub on Patreon!

Patreon is a wonderful way for you to support content that you love on a monthly basis. Taking its name and inspiration from the word “patron” which means to support, invest, back: it’s a membership platform that makes it easy for supporters to invest within their budget for content they love, and for the creators of the content to get paid. By joining me at Patreon, you will gain access to exclusive content. And through this exchange,  I will be able to continue creating what you love and sharing it with the world.

I am not interested in acquiring and accumulating. I am interested in Creating, Collaborating, and Contributing. My strengths are my creative ideas, visualization & my ability to focus and see these ideas through. My strengths are also my capacity for sharing, for creating authentic connection, and in opening space for communication and expansion in a big way. 

I have so much more to talk about! Including books that I'm working on, which I'll be sharing the details of progress in my patron posts. For now though, I'd love you to take a moment to have a look at my page, understand how it works, and if you've been a fan of my work over the years; if you feel my work is a breath of fresh, honest, pure air; if you see the value in what I create and you want to see me continue creating, then please consider joining me there. I know this is the way forward for me, and I want to be able to make and connect the only way I know how: with all my heart. 

With Love, 

Pia xx

 

 

LET'S BEAM...

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On Monday, I posted the above photo you see here in the frame on my studio shelf on instagram, with the message "we are human beams" written over it, creating the hashtag #wearehumanbeams. In the week leading up to posting this photograph, I was feeling these words resonate strongly through me. As I felt the powerful energy and importance of the meaning of these words, this moment I captured in this photograph came to mind. It was almost exactly 3 years ago. My Mum had just passed away, and I had taken Laly to my parents to assist my Dad with household changes. Perhaps we were staying there, I can't remember the details of that time, I just remember the intensity, the fatigue and how surreal it felt, like I was walking between worlds. I spent quite some time looking for this image in my archives, wondering if it was how I remembered it and my heart felt expansive when I found it: seeing the beauty and awe of that moment. When I took this photo, through the tidal wave of grief, I remember how it pulled me up to the surface - to the present - as I stood captivated by how my daughter's human form connected & communicated so wondrously with the sun, the sea and the sand. It felt like I'd witnessed a moment of real-life magic. I could see the sunlight radiate through her skin and her inner glow play with this light, encouraging it, nurturing it. There she stood before me as a human BEAM. 

This is what I saw, and this is what I posted.

However within a few minutes of posting it, I had someone I'd not heard from before called Vivienne comment something along the lines of "I wish you'd be more circumspect when choosing photos of Laly, this is inappropriate". It pissed me off, I admit, but I took a moment to reflect on her comment and try to see things from her perspective. I wrote a reply along the lines of, "I was absolutely circumspect when choosing to post this image. I understand some people see things differently, I respect that". I got the impression that she too respected that and I thought we had resolved our differences. But when I awoke the next morning, my photograph had been removed by instagram, along with all the comments - most of which I had not read because I was asleep - and I was and still am locked out from using the hashtag  I created #wearehumanbeams. 

That got me really pissed off. 

Then I sat with my feelings. And so much came up...

Feeling shamed, feeling like someone told me I was a bad parent, feeling like I'd been disciplined for something wrong that I didn't do, feeling like I wasn't good enough, feeling like I hadn't understood something, feeling confused, feeling violated, feeling misunderstood

How often had I been misunderstood in my early life? I think that's why I have spent all these years strengthening my ability to communicate clearly, to ensure that if there is a misunderstanding, I know that I've done everything in my power to communicate clearly.

Anyway after the anger began to dissolve, I felt the powerful energy of the experience sink in.  "Sure", I thought, "I get it".  I can see life from other perspectives -  again, it's something I have found as an important attribute to work on in life - and I'm all for safety, and I'm absolutely all for keeping our children safe. 

But this? So much strength came forth after the anger released. I realised that this behaviour, these emotional reactions from people, these restrictions from companies like instagram are EXACTLY why there are so many incredible souls too  scared to be themselves, to let their creativity shine, to lead a  creative, heart-centered  life. 

"Why can't you see what I see?" I wondered. It was really perplexing, I struggled to understand what was happening. But that's when it hit me like a brick: they aren't connected to their centre.

For me, I chose to post this photograph because of the art. For me, and so many of us I know, we are seeing the art, the beauty. But others simply can't see this - all they can see is a photo of a nude child. And that brings up all sorts of deeply disturbing emotions for them. Feelings they are too scared to feel, too scared to allow come up to the surface. They can't connect to their hearts, it's just too confronting. 

I know there are deeply damaged souls out there. And I understand that the people who report photographs like mine think they are doing good, that they are protecting me and/or my child. I understand they think they know something that I don't know. That I am naïve and vulnerable, and that they know better. But I know that removing this type of photograph - of which I was very discriminating in selecting to communicate the concept of being a human beam -  will NOT stop damaged souls from feeding their addictions. What this action does is even more damaging: It stops authenticity, art, talent and beauty from shining in an increasingly dark world. This action and the actions of these major communication companies are feeding the fear in the world - fear of seeing & experiencing life differently, of not conforming, of not standing out from the crowd. This behaviour stifles freedom and disconnects us from our heart centres. 

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What do you see? This is how I came to write My Heart Wanders in the first place:

What you see is a reflection of what you feel inside. And people would rather stop something like my photograph from being published than deal with the emotions that arise from what they see.

It's what you feel that matters. It's what this image brings up in you. It's not what I don't see, it's what you see and how that makes you feel. That's the purpose of ART:  it evokes our feelings, particularly those feelings that are trapped and stuck.

This is why I am so passionate about the importance of tapping into your creativity, because if we don't, we will become stuck like this: we will only be able to see things from the darkness, from the fear. We will rationalise our limited viewpoint as 'logical', 'reasonable', 'sensible', 'practical', 'truthful'. But that's not heart speak. Humans are not meant to only think with our brains. That would make us computers. We are also meant to feel, express, radiate from our heart centres...

We are human beams: We are light - traveling under the ocean,  above in the ether, and right here on earth for our lifetime. Every new idea we form is light. Close your eyes and imagine the the world at night, look how it lights up with the light we have created. We are drawn to light. Because we are light. And what we project is also what will be reflected back to us. 

So ANYWAY, in response to the removal of my photograph, I have made this...

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Because I won't allow anyone to take my art away. Instead, I'm going to beam my light BRIGHTER. My child is art, I am art, what I express is art.

And it got me thinking: How would you, my fellow creative souls, express the idea that we are human beams? I want to see your interpretation - I want us to make this art. 

And since I am no longer able to post using the hashtag #wearehumanbeams, it doesn't stop you from using it! 

So I got an idea - a beam of light: How about we come together as a mass creative collaboration and use this hashtag to create a body of incredible work, that showcases in each of our unique ways, how we would express that WE ARE HUMAN BEAMS. And to get you inspired and focussed, I'll choose someone to receive a 3-hour creative mentoring package from me, no matter where you are in the world.

If we can create an incredible body of work for #wearehumanbeams, if this becomes big, we can turn it into a book! Let's rock this place up!!  Vivent les artistes

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So in my usual fashion, I don't have deadlines and limitations on this for now - I will give it the freedom to expand - that's always the BEST place to start. And the only way this can happen is through YOU. For now I feel if we use the hashtag on insta #wearehumanbeams , spread the word - you can repost my new piece above "we are human beams" - and tag people in the post I write on insta, then you're in the collaboration. Even if you don't want to make something for it, let others know who you know would love to. Then, when you post your work for "we are human beams", hashtag it so others can see and follow your work, and tag me in it so I can see you want to be in the running to receive the mentoring package. 

Note: there are no limitations on how many works you submit. You can use any form of art - whatever your heart is drawn to. The idea is to ignite your creative spirit. Kindred spirit & fellow artist Midnight Blue already posted a wonderful video she made in support, take a look at the hashtag #wearehumanbeams on insta to see it! It will get you inspired! I don't know if, when I post this on insta, my hashtag will work so I will need to rely on you guys to repost it there for everyone, so they can see it in the hashtag and understand the project. 

Let's be human beams. Let's make the light shine bright. 

Fuck, I'm excited about this. 

 

xx

 

Parenting from the Heart...

Last week on instagram, you may recall I wrote a raw & honest post about my experience of becoming a mother. It stirred up so much conversation about our individual experiences of parenting and the impact it has made on us, the many incredible comments were messages straight to my heart...

My friend Shona who has spent over 20 years as a youth worker & is a mum to two wonderful young men, was moved to action by the post (her inner fire was ignited!) and asked me if I’d consider inviting you to an evening discussion/workshop that her & I would co-host together. One of the things that struck me, after a number of conversations between us this past week while sharing our ideas and intentions for such an event, was when Shona told me this:

“My parents were the only people I ever heard say that they loved teenagers. They looked forward to us being teenagers. I had never heard that before from anyone! Most parents lamented the coming of the teenage years, feeling an ever-growing dread at the thought of what was to come and worse openly communicating that in front of their children."

Absolutely! I thought, I know my parents were those that probably dreaded it and certainly didn't talk about it afterwards with joy & lightness! And I know many of my friends today look at their teenage years as though they were horrible to their parents, and so dread their own children becoming teenagers. Shona continued...

"The sense of acceptance that I felt when I heard my parents say they loved teenagers was very powerful. It took away the power of the teenage rebellion. I’m not saying that it was all unicorns and rainbows but it was as smooth a transition for everyone in the family as any I had ever seen. And now having raised my own two teenage boys, I see, from first hand experience, the wisdom of their words.”

After I heard her say that, I was IN! And now we are super excited to let you know the details. It will be a casual & intimate evening 7:30-9:30pm on Tuesday March 20 at Shona’s beautiful home here in Rozelle, Sydney, where we will discuss a number of parenting topics close to our hearts, and problem solve with Shona’s guidance. This event is for parents of small children to teenagers. I’ll be the voice of our emotions (you know it!), and Shona will share the tools we can use to work through our challenges. You’ll leave feeling inspired & empowered as both a parent and person. 

Parenting from the Heart: A Path of fun, growth and LOVE...

All the info is up on my website now, here is the link.  There will be champagne and beautiful French cheeses of course (no event I host is complete without them!) It’s limited numbers as we want to keep the event intimate so if this is something you’d love to come along to, place your booking and we will email you with more details! I hope you can come along, it’s going to be a wonderful and life-enriching evening. Xx

We are human beams...

So here's the thing. 

Over the last seven months, I've been disassembling personal obstacles like there is no tomorrow.  So much has come to the surface for me over this time, huge emotional hurdles that I had NO idea were there. In this time I've learnt things about myself, things that I thought I'd let go of long long ago but instead they'd been very well hidden and remained embedded within.  Turns out I'd built incredibly elaborate cave-like structures to keep them out of everyday sight. Caves that, over time, became well obscured by thick tangled vines.  As I was contentedly walking along my jungle path, I began to notice these thick vines that seemed to grow more dense as I wandered on.  I didn't order this! I said to my heart. I cut them back but they grew thicker the more I walked on. Heart, I called out, WT-EFFthis isn't right! Is this my path? It must be someone else's. What is this bullshit, am I lost? I don't want to be here anymore! 

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Me, climbing a ginormous rock on the edge of the Hawkesbury River, photo by Elemental Explorer & creative collaborator Midnight Blue, January 2018. 

The more I stalked on, pushing through and slashing through the vines, the more tired I became. Everything in my life felt like it was falling apart. I felt overwhelmed, I couldn't breathe. My inner warrior was losing all its strength. 

Finally with shoulders slumped, I dropped down, feeling utterly defeated.

What's the difference between defeat and surrender? I wondered. What's the difference between surrender and acceptance? I pondered. I had no energy left to do anything but sit and look around. 

 And that's when I noticed the caves. 

They were beautiful spaces - but of course, I'd make them so! Which made me laugh at myself. Because now I've learnt creating such visual wonder can be a great way of masking one's truth.

As I regained my energy bit by bit, one by one I entered each cave. I looked at what I'd kept hidden all these years. It's unbelievable fascinating, to say the very least. And I feel ready to share my findings. 

I know many of us are in this collectively - we may not share the same history or experiences, but we share a heart journey, and what I feel and am able to express is a light beam you can count on to help see your way ahead. 

I'm going to share my findings in lots of different ways in coming days and months - in my new work, in journal posts here, on instagram and in instagram stories (yes, I've broken through my mental block on talking to camera and I'M DOIN' IT! I may be a quiet voice among the booming ones but I'm not going to let that stop me from using what I have). 

And I've been quietly working on my website this year - it's always been such a strong expression of my creativity over the years and it's exciting to be able to direct these new findings into my offerings already. 

I'm super excited to let you know I have re-structured my consultation and mentoring packages so there are options for everyone. I don't want anyone to miss out on the opportunity to follow their heart, it's the core of everything. It's our magic and when we let it out, we become human beams. 

In other news, I'll be announcing two awesome collaborations! Like a child, I am jumping up and down with joy and anticipation, I want to burst out with all of it now. 

Another change to my online presence is the newsletter - I'm ditching it, it was just not the right medium for me so instead, I'll be writing here in my journal, and those of you signed up via email will receive this straight to your inbox. It will mean you will hear from me more openly, with no newsletter marketing & salesy prompting. I'll just blab it all out here and you can wander through my website at your own heart's desire. There's lots to peruse now, like my old (blog)house (remember that?!!)... except now, it's a boat. And I'm ready to drop anchor.

 photo by Elemental Explorer & creative collaborator  Midnight Blue , January 2018. 

photo by Elemental Explorer & creative collaborator Midnight Blue, January 2018. 

With so much love, 

Pia xx