Monday, February 1, 2010

Mid-month challenges and submission stuff.

For February, I have decided to make TWO challenges. One visual and one literary. Please post any questions in the comment section of this post, because if you are asking it, someone else is probably interested in the answer too. My strange ideas don't always translate well onto blogs.

visual challenge.
February being the month we celebrate love and valentines. I thought it was a perfect time to design valentines for our babies. A visual love note, if you will. You can make a heart with your baby's name, or take a picture of something that reminds you of your little one. No poems or haiku as such: one picture/digital art piece. Think slide. Please only one per person. If you can, include their name or some love note to your baby. It can be a photograph, a painting, a digital media piece, but please make it graphic. I may compile it into a slide show for posting on February 14th, or simply just post them on this blog space. Please email me at stilllife365days (at) gmail (dot) com with your own valentine for your baby. Please do not feel it has to be all red, pink, lacy, and beautiful. Subversive art is very welcome here, as well as anger and other emotions. Please use Valentine Challenge in the subject line. Please send them in BY February 12th.

literary challenge.
February's mid-month challenge, based on the Community Poem, is to write a recipe for your own healing. What is moving you through each day and getting you through your loss? When you add all the elements up, what recipe make a functioning you? I wrote one for me (based on a pre-pregnant me, but still):

Angie's Recipe for Survival
1 bottle of wine
2 hours of art
1 bath
189 kisses from my daughter and husband
1 1/2 hours of crying

5 All-girl punk rock albums
2 naps
4 hours of reality television

Wake alone in the dark. Watch the sun rise. Realize your daughter will not see the sunrise. Cry. Write about the experience. Cry. Publish the post. Eat some yogurt. Read blogs. Listen to screaming girl music playlist. Throw away breakfast. Hear your other daughter cry. Carry her downstairs. Kiss her when she turns her head. Always kiss her when you get the chance. Paint. Write some more. Read blogs. Take a walk. Yell at the dog for bumping Lucy's altar. Read children's book and get choked up. Sob during naptime. Eat something spicy and numbing. Watch crappy television. Soak in a hot tub. Make dinner. Stare at it in your bowl. Drink wine. Take a bath with your daughter. Don't scrub. Write more. Read more blogs. Interact with husband. Put your daughter to bed. Read heartbreaking Greek Myths until she falls asleep. Fall into bed. Toss and turn. Realize you forgot to tell your husband thank you for being him. Dream of purple.

Please email me at stilllife365days (at) gmail (dot) com with your own recipe for survival. Please PLEASE be mindful of length, as this posting will be a compilation of many recipes from many people. Please use February Challenge in the subject line. I will publish the list of recipes on February 15th. So, please send them in BY February 14th.


about submissions.

I really appreciate the great response to the call for submissions. KEEP THEM COMING IN! This project will going for the entire year (at least), so I am always going to be in need of submissions. (I will probably bug you a bunch in between.) Some people have told me that their poem or work was specifically done for still life 365. That is awesome. I have always envisioned this space being one of inspiration as well as expression. Any art, crafts, or writing you submit does not have to be done this year, or even this decade. This is a project about grief and loss, healing and survival. Any way. Any time. If you submit, just know that I might not get back to you immediately. I generally work early mornings or evenings, and in the middle, it is kind of packed. I will email you the night before it is posted to let you know that you are up tomorrow. All times are based on my American Eastern Standard Time-centric point of view. I generally set the post to go live at midnight EST. If I don't get enough information about a project, I will email you and ask some questions, or ask you to expand upon your biography. I try to write the biographies in third person, and the about the piece can be either in first or third person. If I haven't used a piece you emailed me, please know that I will. I have tried to rotate media type, painting, then poem, then visual, then, sometimes I seem to have an onslaught of paintings, and then poems. I also try to not publish multiple works by the same artist in the same week, so I may hold your work for a couple of weeks. Also, two babylost mamas are collaborating on a piece for still life 365 (isn't that so cool, and such a great idea!?!) If you decide to work with someone, please include a biography for the two of you--either a joint one, or two separate ones.

And now, some feedback from you. What do you think after a month? Is there something else you would like to see? Do you want to have inspirational prompts for the month (like on the sidebar) and then a day to showcase the prompt-inspired art?  What else would you like to see happen on still life 365?


  1. Angie, this is a wonderful, inspirational space, thank you. I think the idea of creative theme or stimulus for each month is a great one. Not necessarily to be put in to a post, but just to serve as inspiration if people need it (i.e. ME!!)

    As for other ideas:

    - I wonder if it might be interesting to do something like a 'Portrait of the Artist' piece. It could be a visual portrait or a piece of writing a la James Joyce or collage of meaningful things or anything at all.

    - I was reading over at Mother Henna's about a journal that she's collaborating on and I thought that might be a lovely project to attempt here. We could all have a couple of pages of the Still Life 365 journal to fill with a tribute to our babies/ lives after loss/ healing thoughts/ supportive messages etc etc
    Perhaps the finished journal could be the piece exhibited on the 365th day?

    - Perhaps it might be interesting for readers of Still Life 365 to have the opportunity to ask each other questions about their pieces/ process/ creativity? I know that I'd be fascinated by that.

    Thank you again. I love this project! xx

  2. Just to be clear about the journal thing: I think the way it works is that we physically send the journal to each other. I.e. you'd fill your pages and post to me, I'd fill my pages and post to the next person etc. We could put a map on the back and mark the journey of the journal.

  3. Those are some great ideas. I have been wondering about the weekends. Traffic seems to be slower and more inclined to other more lingering types of work. I was wondering if an Artist Interview, or Portrait of the Artist feature wouldn't be cool on the weekend. I could interview the person via email, post the questions and answers and then the comments could be a good way to ask the artist a question? Or readers could interview each other about their creative process?

    The journal is a cool idea...let me explore it more and see what we can do.

    I have been wanting to do something like on my circles blog with a tribute to babies who died that month with a candle, but a guestbook would be cool too.

    Great suggestions...keep 'em coming. I love it. Anybody have specific feelings about the weekends?

  4. My only specific feeling is that I love sl365 and how you're doing it. So far I haven't been missing a thing, but I like you girls idea about the artist-portrait, where one can enquire about technique too.

    I also loooove your survival-recipe. Let's see if this weeks mayhem allows me to try out my own recipe.

  5. I'm loving still life 365, it's a wonderful inspiring space.
    I also love Jess' suggestion of the travelling journal.
    No suggestions of my own I'm afraid, my mind is blank...again.

  6. I think you're doing a great thing here. I have nothing new to add, only that I LOVE the idea of a traveling journal and self-portrait idea.

  7. You already know I love what you are doing Angie. I do not have any suggestions to make, but the ones mentioned above sound great! Thanks for doing this! xx


What do you think?