Art at your Fingertips

It seems like everyone in my Instagram feed these days is posting photos from gorgeous places around the globe. And one of the most interesting things about traveling is being able to hit museums and art galleries to see amazing art.

But what if you can’t get there? Recently, the Guggenheim Museum decided to make available over 200 books of art online. You can flip through pages of books just like they were right there at your fingertips. The photos are brilliant and crisp, and it is a wonderful idea. I’m sure this is just the start of offering valuable resources to people online that more institutions will adopt.

Take a few minutes to browse the collection. I’ll bet you’ll get lost in the pages.

Free Comic Book Day!

This weekend is Free Comic Book Day, and Carleton Place has taken a special spin on it. Not only will you be able to pick up a mission card that will lead you to all 30 free comic books, but we’re celebrating Local Heroes, as well! Isn’t that a great idea?

The whole event begins at 10am. Pick up your Mission Card at either end of the hunt: The BIA Office, or Total Rhythm Dance Studio. The line ups will be long at the beginning, so don’t feel like you have to start at the first store or stop on the mission card. Pick a place listed, and get going. But, you NEED a card to get a comic book. Don’t be disappointed!

Bridge Street will NOT be closed that day, so parents need to be watchful of their excited children. No need to rush from place to place, you’ll have plenty of time to get all of the comics–they’ve ordered extra this year! And don’t forget to stop in at one of the booths along the way to say hello (and thank you), to a local hero like an OPP officer, a Paramedic, or a volunteer! And yes, the Carleton Place Public Library is one of your stops! Make sure to drop in, wear a costume, and get a picture!

Mark your calendars for Saturday….it’s going to be fun!

What Was That Art?

If you were a fan of 70’s sitcoms, you no doubt watched The Brady Bunch. The sprawling home featured in the show was interesting due to the number of people who lived there, and the fact that Mike Brady was an architect. But did you ever notice the decor, in particular, the wall art? Blogger Kirk Demarais sure did.

In a truly informative and detailed post, Demarais goes through the Brady household room by room, and analyzes each sculpture, painting, and work of art he can find. Not only does he try to figure out the name of the piece, but he tracks down similar art, and does a small profile on each artist he identifies.

Overall, it seems that the artwork was more about blending into the set, to allow the actors to stand out, rather than the background. But the set designers got it right–the pieces were interesting enough for a modern, fashionable family of the time, and bland enough for the rest of us not to notice.

Take your time reading through the post. You’ll probably recognize a few things you never even realized you had noticed before.

Legacy Journaling

journal1Author Heather Tucker visited us at the Carleton Place Public Library last week to talk a little about her book, THE CLAY GIRL, and to run a workshop on Legacy Journaling. It was a VERY creative and informative evening. We were colouring, drawing, and doodling our way to elaborate family histories without feeling like we couldn’t do it. And I know many of us will continue to work on these for months to come.

claygirlThank you, Heather, for bringing your amazing talents, and wonderful, vibrant personality to our little town. We know it was a long few weeks for you, but we had a blast!

journal2

Sample pages from her journal.

journal3Wonderful display from the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum.

Creativity is Alive and Well at the Library

As part of our “Lifelong Learning” series at the library, we have been running a six-week course entitled, “Find Your Creative Self”. It rose out of the interest people have in creativity, and the lack of inspiration we sometimes feel when it comes to making things. After the flood of interest, we thought maybe you’d like to know how things are going.

Most of the course is based around the ideas from two creativity-inspiring books. The first is Julia Cameron’s THE ARTIST’S WAY, and the second is Elizabeth Gilbert’s BIG MAGIC.

waymagicBoth books cover many of the same topics, from identifying the fears that hold us back, to learning to respect and love the act of creating, to championing ourselves when we don’t often feel like we can. But each book takes a different approach–one quite rigid with meaningful exercises and soul-searching, and one more inspiration-based–and we decided to combine the ideas to appeal to a variety of people.

Each week, we do a creativity activity (or a “creactivity”, as I like to call it)–anything from drawing crazy pictures based on a single shape, to making art out of string cheese. Let me tell you, this past week was one of our best activities–where we performed a rousing rendition of “Swinging on a Star” using only found instruments, such as sponges, pool noodles, safety pins and thumbtacks. Bruce Springsteen—look out!

cheeseBut more importantly, the participants have really been making some progress in their creative lives. We’re discovering what’s been holding us back (lack of time!), ways in which we can open up our creative minds (try cleaning out a closet and getting rid of things you never use), and a greater sense of allowing ourselves to be creative. It’s been a struggle, and there have been some near-tears, but we’ve also done a lot of laughing and getting to know new friends and supporters.

Will everyone come out of this with a brand new hobby or career? Maybe not. But I know that most people are enjoying doing new things and trying the challenges they’re faced with each week as a means of exploring their abilities. After the end of the six weeks, we’ll do a little assessment, and see what we’ve learned and how we’ve grown, and hopefully, there will be progress made in the future as they go off and try to approach creativity in new ways. I think, if anything, we’ve all learned to be easier on ourselves. Being creative is supposed to be fun, not guilt-inducing, or self-esteem-crumbling.

Happy creating, everyone!