An Upcoming Change

Ah, I know this blog has been neglected, and I’ve been feeling bad for keeping it on the backburner. But I’ve discovered that it’s tough work keeping up with posts when I’m trying to juggle a full-time job with serving in two church ministries, honing my artistic/musical skills and being present in my rather active social life. Anyway, artists go through harvest/fallow cycles and now I happen to be readying the ground, not so much harvesting the fruits of my labour (that’s what I like to tell myself, but it’s also true!)

The good news: I’m going to continue keeping this space up. I’m not sure who reads this, but props to my friends who do; I’m glad you enjoy reading my random and sporadic posts. The even better news: I’m going to start taking my artistic portfolio seriously, and will be converting this site into a gallery of my creative progress.

Continue reading “An Upcoming Change”

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Doodle of the Day: My Art Journey + The Wonderful Cross

Today I have something doodly to share. One doodle was drawn yesterday and one today; both were drawn with Tayasui Sketches on my iPhone 4. Here’s the first one. It’s the story of my art journey:

My Art Journey

(that weird half-formed A/star is my way of signing off my pieces since A is for Antelune, y’know)

When I was young I used to draw lots. I also painted. Then I stopped doing that for a while, but I still liked doodling on my notes. In lectures I would doodle and doodle on the margins of my foolscap paper. While most of my friends would pass notes to stave off boredom, I would doodle. I never took it further than that though.

Later on, I started taking photographs and editing them using photo apps. I had this deadly fear of Photoshop and I’m not even sure why! I think it’s because everything looked so complicated and I never had the patience to sit down and go through tutorials. Instead, I took to Tayasui Sketches (sketch app) and PicMonkey instead. I use PicMonkey to make some graphics for my blogs and it’s a great and simple image editor with design tools thrown in.

A year later, I decided to try my hand at GIMP because I was trying to create stuff for Society6. It didn’t turn out so bad, and I was pretty pleased that I had gotten over my fear of image editors that looked like PS. As I recently joined my church’s social media team (design + copywriting), I decided that I needed to learn PS and get better at it. I took the plunge and the psychological barrier was broken. Years after my initial fear, I finally realised that… it wasn’t that bad after all. I’m exploring my options in PS now and am really pleased that I’m learning many new things without fear of failure. I’m also extremely glad and grateful that my prayer at the start of 2014 was answered – I prayed that God would nurture my skills and interest in visual art, and it has happened so gradually that I never noticed!

This brings me to the next doodle…

The Wonderful Cross

Some of my friends were having a rough day today, and I immediately felt like cheering them up with a doodle. The first thing I thought of was the wonderful Cross, signifying the risen Christ, and this Cross has all manner of confetti, hearts, and stars bursting from it as a massive blast of Love! It’s wonderful how much inspiration His love has given me, and I pray that everyone may experience it in abundance like I have. It’s all about how open your heart is to receiving His love, that’s all.

To end this doodle post off, I’ll just say that I have some really exciting design plans for four posters and they came to me randomly just now. Also had this really cool dream about blood moons yesterday and am going to transcribe the dream into a story. I’m looking forward to making these projects a reality!

Dangerous Games

You take one step
forward
then stop.

The other children are waiting
on the roundabout.
They goad and coax,
but you turn your head
away and say

“dangerous games only get people hurt”

They cry out, stubborn sirens,
to the feel-good side of you.
Just one round! Just one round!
You stop and stare at the
sea of smiles around you.
They are too inviting and
too many to resist. You
spin faster and faster, turning
yellows spinning reds ’til you’ve
drowned in the light, in the sound –

You lose control,
your balance falters

A gentle   p u s h,
and you fall, dizzy and
scared, onto to the sidewalk,
knees scraped, arms bruised,
heart torn.

Your turn is over, they say

They laugh –
and this time,

You join in.

[2006]

Copyright © 2014 Antelune. All Rights Reserved.

Our Paper Memories

It stood in its pale glory
proudly
on my mantelpiece
all paper and
dust

The colours faded;
beige green blue
twirling twining twisting
into a six-faced
six-windowed
six-holed
fragile origami box

I wonder how you made it
straight-edged sides and all
you never said anything
just smiled and merged back into
the passing wave of
smiling people on the street

I felt safe
with that box by my side
until yesterday
the wind blew it out of the window
into the rain
onto my rose bushes
blooming red petals

I brought in the paper pieces
their secrets and memories
soggy; thorn-pricked
beige people in green shirts
green shirts in blue seas

They drowned silently
lost in the cosmos
You left me

I don’t know how to piece them back
I wish you’d taught me.

[2006]

Copyright © 2014 Antelune. All Rights Reserved.

The Whys and Hows of Happiness

Strasbourg, France Tunnel

Somewhere in a tunnel in the small town of Strasbourg, France, someone had taken it into his head to ask a question to all who passed through.

Are you happy?

It’s a question that seems deceptively easy to answer and yet for many, the answer is anything but simple. I’ve tried to answer it for months. I wrote this draft last year, in October, and I’m revisiting it now because I feel compelled to complete this post and resolve my thoughts on the matter.

Happiness tends to be a confusing thing mainly because of two reasons:

  1. Human beings may confuse happiness with euphoria (e.g. the high you get when you win a prize, competition or when you ride the rollercoaster)
  2. Human beings are not good at predicting what would make them happy in the long run

Not everyone will fall prey to no. 1, but it seems that no one is exempt from no. 2. People who predict how happy or unhappy they will feel about a debilitating life incident often end up feeling happier than they had predicted once the incident had occurred. People who win the lottery are happy for approximately two weeks before their level of happiness goes back down to a happiness “baseline” that depends on genetic, environmental and personality factors. When I was younger, I remember thinking that my achievements and failures would make a huge difference on my overall happiness. Yet when such major events occurred, I was affected for only a few days to a week. So much for that.

So far we’ve been talking about levels of happiness and the state of being happy – but what exactly is happiness? That’s the complicated part. Some people think it’s an object to be strived for, like a prize at the end of a well-fought race. Other people think it’s an undefinable, fleeting moment that comes unasked and leaves a void in its place. Do happy people experience happiness because they are happy? Or are they happy because they experience happiness? Not so easy to answer.

Continue reading “The Whys and Hows of Happiness”

Song of a Streetlamp

Song of a Streetlamp

One day (I think) I will grow up
And be as tall as you
Who reach towards infinity
And shelter those below

I don’t have much, and I repeat
I don’t have much to give
I’m just a little, lonely light
Only useful when at night
People walk the paths unlit
Except the space I glow

I know there’s no comparison
Between a tree and me
I know I’ll never be as tall
Or be as tenderly loved by all
My beauty is too stark and small
No poets write about me

One thing I know
That gives me warmth
My solace I find there:
I fight the currents of the night
If only in this sphere of light
The weary soul regains his sight
And leans against me, breathing

Soft, his breaths, they bring me
life again, our shadows merge
under the trees, my light,
reflected on their leaves –

Dear traveller of the world,
My light in exchange for your love
Your love in exchange for my light
That’s enough for me
That’s enough

Copyright © 2013 Antelune. All Rights Reserved.

A Cup of Tea

A cup of tea in hand, I sit
Still. and ponder the letters you wrote
before;

steeped in
strange, nonchalant
curiosity at your new
acquisition, you write.
letters, forming words to
barricade time’s march
against two
falling feathers
from a common wing.

Your words overlap and loop
on repeat; phrases of a
familiar melody that once
pleased the hearer
phrases of a melody that once
phrases of a melody
phrases of

you, the ice cream truck
in a ringing
abscess
of
silence

you exist in the invisible
aquarium of memory where
words slide down glass walls
that break flesh, not glass…

In any case –
not wishing to coax an unwilling song,
I wrote words. My own
Words, must be mined for meaning;
running deep below the surface
of the mind, inaccessible quarks
breaking through cavernous depths,
you can hear me running

from my words, your letters, the grind
of cogs screeching against the inexorable
drum of Life will
Desist.

An arm is lifted. It pours
the tea. trickles down the sink,
too cold, too bitter to swallow.

[8 July 2009]

Copyright © 2014 Antelune. All Rights Reserved.