About every 10 months, or so, my vision board is full and begins to remind me that it is time to start over. Time for new growth to be shared and experienced. A bit of sadness comes over me as I look over this board and I am reminded of all the inspirations I have experienced the past year. And of course I am filled with joy as I look over my board. A few highlights from the vision board:
“Dont be robotic about anything,” a quote from the REVEALED: Portraits from Beneath One’s Surface and a reminder to me to keep shaking things up.
“A turning point” – I felt the past year there has been some big turning points
Several paintings my daughter purchased from orphans in Haiti
The Hug business card I got. Hugs are good. 🙂
Now the board is clean and awaits new inspirations and insights into my journey. My last vision board can be found here.
The past few months have been a whirlwind of REVEALED activity. A new set of subjects, an art museum exhibit, the film showing at film festivals, it’s 6-year birthday, and the REVEALED book. Phew!
The other day there was a Q&A after the REVEALED film screening at the SENE film festival. One attendee asked myself and the filmmaker a simple and interesting question. “What would we put in our box?” No pressure… Subjects have 2-weeks to determine what they put in their box. There have been many times I have gone through this 2-week process to decide what I would put in my box. Now I am asked to answer that question with a few seconds of thought, knowing that what I’d put in my REVEALED box has changed over the years as I grow.
I answered that I’d put fire in the box and I would have to think about this further to determine what items go into that box. Two days later this question popped into my head again. What would I put in my box? Maybe ashes that represent the past and wood on fire that is fueling the future. That came to me rather quickly and it felt good. His question reminded me that it has been a few years since I have put myself through the REVEALED process other than a facilitator. While I do look within often, I haven’t walked around my daily life wondering what items would represent where I am today. His question nudged me to give this more thought over the next week or two.
With that said, I ask you to give it some thought today and even this week. What would you put in your box?
Yesterday, Reverend David Shire and I were guest speakers at the Palliative care Pharmacy class at the University of Rhode Island, URI. The 3-hour class engaged in thoughtful discussion around the meaning of spirituality and the importance of looking within.
I began the class by asking students to define inspired thought, exploring the emotions around inspired thought and understanding where it begins. We then transitioned to what the students would put into their REVEALED box after they had a few minutes to share their ideas with one another about what they’d put into their box.
Starting with my own example of an inspired thought (REVEALED), I encouraged the students to quickly go within and see what came from putting yourself on the spot to think about what represents your beliefs. Sometimes our best ideas come to us in an instant when we were thinking about something completely different.
We then viewed the REVEALED film and expanded our conversation, now that everyone had some time to truly contemplate what they would put in their box. One student felt their life experience wasn’t long enough to find something of deep meaning to put into the box. I found this to be a very interesting comment … one I had not heard before. I shared that REVEALED includes children from the fourth grade … and those children have insightful revelations, even after only being alive for a decade.
Reverend David Shire then spoke about Spiritual issues in Palliative Care. By examining the Body/Mind/Spirit Triangle we can understand how mental illness may disconnect us from our deeper self, and how spirituality and religion can be used in the healing process. The questions and discussions around our topic were energizing and really brought inspiration and joy to me…I always enjoy the thoughts and discussions that stem from people going within.
Since this experience, I find myself searching to define my spirituality and evaluate my life experiences that are defining who I am and what I believe in.
The 4th grade class of Friends Academy asked me to attend their their REVEALED Class presentation to the entire school. They created their own multimedia presentation of all their REVEALED class portraits. In addition, they made me this most amazing REVEALED box containing an accordion book in which each page was an individual thank you note from each student that participated.
I am deeply touched by this gesture and this box sits on my box and reminds me everyday how special this project is. I shared this with our monthly photographer breakfast meetup and one photographer looked at me and said, “If this was given to me, I’d have tears in my eyes.” And he is so right.
Here are some quotes from the thank you notes:
“What I liked about this project was that there wasn’t really a limit to things I could do on it and I could get as creative as I wanted.” Ava
“Thank you Sir Indermaur, for opening up another artistic vision for me. My experience with you has doubled my success in art … My box helped me explain to my friends just how much I love nature.” Leah
“I love this project because it really revealed what was inside of me and I will always thank you for that.” Hannah
“… I have learned a lot about myself and the kind of person I am.” Grace
“I liked this project because we could use anything we wanted to.” Ethan
Of course, every thank you note in this book touched me.
2011 fly by with a tremendous amount of REVEALED news and activity. A book is now in production, art exhibits, and REVEALED additions…which happen to only be REVEALED Class subjects. This is a branch of REVEALED that I am very excited to see grow. In 2011 I photographed a class of 5th graders in the Spring and then a class of 4th graders in the Fall. The project begins by me visiting the class and meeting these eager students that are excited about a new art project… And maybe even having a guest artist. 🙂 I return to the class two weeks later to photograph the children with their self designed REVEALED boxes that they get to keep.
I just posted the latest addition of 30 fourth graders and two of their teachers. More about the process and experience is available here.
You can also read what SouthCoast Today wrote about this latest addition of fourth graders.