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#Fishiesin Space

The Pigcowtopus Project Presents #Fishies in Space

My thoughts behind the series…

Ever since I saw a Jellyfish in Space on T.V., I have often contemplated the knowledge that we truly have of space, especially in comparison with the knowledge that we have of the ocean. There is still so much to learn about our own earth, never mind the universe. While mysteries still abound, I wanted to give sea life a new perspective in space, and it started off as just a silly, fun idea on a round canvas. The first fish was good old Bubble Eyes. Imagine if fish really could live in a tank, in a suit, and communicate with humanoids….what would they have to say? As I began to paint different fish, I researched interesting facts about them. For example, did you know that the archer fish shoots water out of its mouth so that it can hit and consume insects? Trigger clown fish also interestingly have dorsal fins that help it wedge itself in small openings when it evades predators. I tried to find fish that I enjoyed learning about.

The ocean is a calm, noisy, happy place, and I love when we vacation by the beach. I fall asleep listening to the ways and practice being present. Being present is not always easy to do in a world of distraction and classic misdirection. Imagine our mind could be contained in a bubble. I have learned that with the beauty of the ocean, also comes its peculiar creatures, and we will never truly be able to account for all of the life and ecosystems in the deepest parts of the ocean. I like to research creatures and paint them in my silly way. Bold colors, bold lines and silly faces. Growing up, I loved coloring books and looked forward to the newspaper comics every weekend. I love when I can showcase humor with a hint of realism and a dash of imagination. I painted the fish using posca paint markers, and used acrylic paint on the water to create a bubble effect. The black star lined edges, really make the bubbles pop!

When painting this series, tea pots and tea cups positioned themselves on the clouds, so I started thinking about what message these painting have for me. My husband, Russ, loves trying different kinds of tea and coffee. I am recently exploring tea. My favorite tea has chamomile, butterfly pea flowers, lemon grass and lemon balm. I also love a good tried and true peppermint or rose tea. What is fascinating about tea culture, is the ceremony and ritual that can exist. My husband told me about how some people use a tea ceremony to reflect and stay grounded. They steep the tea in a particular sequence so that they savor the flavor of the tea and can pay attention to how the flavor changes. It is a beautiful thing. While I do not hold tea ceremonies for myself, I have started learning to brew my own teas, and finding peace in the moments of each step of creation. With this series, I cannot help but think of the lines from a poem that I wrote last year: “Think on the present. The sea foam will dissipate, Bubble your dreams up to space…” I imagine these silly fish bubbling up into space to explore. I imagine the tea pots are the pressure that I sometimes feel when I become frustrated or have emotions that overwhelm me. And yet, there is something still about pouring into your own cup. Most of the cups are tipped and overflowing. The silly fish float on.

Learning to Meditate with by writing a Tanka An Excerpt from The Nature of Healing, Evolving and Transforming by Christine Samad

White noise surrounds me.

Relaxing gets easier.

Embrace the pressure.

Fill your head with honeybees,

And usher the hive outward.

Close your wearied eyes.

Just ride the waves to the coast.

Think of nothingness.

Something pushes you forward.

Roll along the moving sea.

Imagine the waves.

Fall into the ebb and flow.

Connect with nature,

The force of the sun and moon.

Become one with the cycle.

The water crashes

Like cymbals against your past.

Think on the present.

The sea foam will dissipate,

Bubble your dreams up to space.

Envision the black,

Let it envelop your soul.

Think of twinkling stars

And of the moon beaming down.

Their light will guide your vision.

Prepare for the dawn

With stillness in your hearts mind,

And breathe in slowly.

Fill your lungs with the sweet air.

Breathe in as deep as you can.

Finally breathe out.

Exhale the pain and worry.

Take fresh breath anew.

Let the sharpness in your lungs

Remind you that you’re alive.

When, pitter patter,

The raindrops begin to fall,

Let them engulf you.

Become one with the monsoon.

Let it clear what’s in its path.

Stretch your arms upward.

Receive what nature bestowed.

Believe your power.

The wind rustles up the veil,

Revealing the wells within.