Balancing Act

It's the New Moon in Capricorn and time for us all to find the yin/yang balance within. So for me, as an artist this means balancing my businesshead with my artheart and PAINTING! Balancing Act (In Process.) Acrylic & pastel on masonite, 48 x 48 inches. © 2011 by Kathy Crabbe

Painting Notes:

Balancing art/life/biz

Picking up that brush and making that first stroke is EVERYTHING and NOTHING; bliss AND terror; both essential to reassure myself that I am indeed ALIVE.

One has to care deeply to paint from the soul.

Just do it! Libra Wool Artist, Michelle from Oz

Libra Artist Michelle New Moon in Libra October 7, 2010 11:44 am pdt

Spotlight on Libran Artist, Michelle Riley Adelaide, South Australia Shop Blog

1. How does you zodiac sign influence your life and your creativity?

Libra, ruled by Venus is a very creative sign – we love pretty things! I have quite a few planets in Libra apart from the Sun … Mars, Pluto, Uranus and Mercury – so I guess you could say I’m a bit over-loaded! Consequently, I’m the sort of person who needs to do something creative every single day.

Despite all these planets in Libra, most people don’t pick me for a Libran … I project my Ascendant (Gemini) and my Moon (Aquarius) most of the time. But I think it’s my Libran nature that inspires me to quiet my mind and let the ideas come to me.

Astrology Needlepoint Kit by Michelle

2. What do you like best about your sign and least?

What I like the best about Libra is balance … something I haven’t quite figured out yet! I’m very much an all-or-nothing person, so I’m still learning the peace, harmony and balance of my Sun sign. I see Libra as being very calm – another quality that I’m aspiring to!

On the negative side, Libra can sometimes lack confidence … it’s very hard being confident as an artist because art is so subjective! This is something again, that I’m learning as I get older – you have to put your work out there and not expect everyone to love it.

3. How has being a Libran helped you become a better artist?

I’ve never really thought about this until recently … I’ve always thought it was other areas in my chart that drove my creativity, for example Saturn in Cancer and MC in Pisces. But now I’m aware that, as well as being a creative sign, Libra is also about seeing things from another person’s point of view. In the past I created designs that were completely self-indulgent – I was selling a few, but I really needed to stop digging my heels in and look at what my potential customers would like. I feel I’m starting to do this now. Also, I was given some spiritual advice last year that I had to ‘come out from behind my needlepoint frame’ and promote myself as well as my work. This is something I’m trying to do too, since the art and the artist can’t really be separated.

Isis Needlepoint Kit by Michelle

4. What kind of creative activities are best suited to your zodiac sign?

Traditionally Libra/Venus is associated with arts such as theatre, fashion and music. But personally I think Libra rules all forms of creativity and self expression – as does Cancer and Pisces. I personally enjoy working with wool and I think this may be because I’m lacking in earth signs in my chart – this provides some balance in my life. I tend to have an ideas-oriented personality so working with wool is very grounding.

5. What advice do you have for other Librans who are just starting to explore and develop their creativity?

Stop talking about it and just DO it! There are a lot of people who are armchair artists, but not many who actually create every day. Talent means nothing if you don’t practice … so don’t waste time wondering if you’re good enough – seriously, it doesn’t matter. The joy that creating art brings you is more important!

Moon Phases Needlepoint PDF Pattern by Michelle

Michelle's Bio

I’ve always wanted to be an artist since I was young but it took me a while to find my perfect medium - wool! I’ve been designing needlepoint kits since around 2000, and haven’t stopped. I started Threefold Designs in 2003, launched my website and have recently started an Etsy store for more exposure. I am also in my first year of studying woven tapestry. When I’m not stitching I co-host a goth/darkwave radio show called Shadowplay

Aquamarine Insights

Looking for assistance, I placed a small piece of Aquamarine, my Gemini Gemstone Guide (in honour of the previous New Moon in Gemini) under my pillow last night and found myself absorbing fresh insights as I slept. I wouldn't call them answers exactly, just insights, mainly about balance.

Balance is something especially important for those of us working from home as we juggle life and work.

Last night I attended opening night of the 44th Annual Sawdust Art Festival in Laguna Beach where I had been an exhibitor from 1995 to 2001. I spoke briefly with a new artist about his ceramic jewelry which I'd been admiring for it's simplicity. We spoke of artistic balance; his booth was filled with creative designs that were all the same size so I asked him about making a few large, dramatic pieces and he agreed that working like that was especially fun and exciting artistically speaking.

So my question for you, dear readers is, "Are you allowing your strengths and talents to shine forth or are you keeping them hidden? What is your number one strength and how are you expressing that gift in a balanced way?"

With that in mind, I found a bit of time today to balance all my hard work with a visit to my painting studio just to sit and write and ponder upon a new painting. I allowed myself a short nap underneath two giant old oaks as I enjoyed the sensation of dappled sunshine upon my skin, my faithful mutt Abby nestled by my side.

What kind of balance could you achieve between your life and work within the next twenty-four hours? Why not try it sometime,  it feels sooooo good!

Wall of Sound

Wall of Sound. Acrylic and pastel on silk, 42 x 42 inches. © 2010 by Kathy CrabbeI'm painting on the last of the silk bolts as we speak. The bolts are left over from my silk painting days when I painted kimonos, wall hangings, scarves, ties and artwork using silk dyes and gutta on silk.

It's so dark outside today with the rain, it feels sooo un-Californian. Plus it's cold in here and gloomy. We are spoiled by the hot, dry sun and although I'm a native Southern Ontario girl at heart I do believe this Cali place has me hooked.

I sink into a wall of digital, electronic sound... Boards of Canada (but they aren't Canadian!).

Wall of Sound.Acrylic and pastel on silk, 42 x 42 inches. © 2010 by Kathy CrabbeThis painting is perfectly balanced, and I don't wanting to disturb it's perfect presence, to unbalance the contours, the forms, the lack of focus.

Ahhhh...the freedom of abstract painting, I can feel it in my bones. I'm seeing a link between my left hand drawing, becoming a psychic, learning to trust my intuition, desire for music without words and abstract painting. There is a deepening of everything.

Wall of Sound.Acrylic and pastel on silk, 42 x 42 inches. © 2010 by Kathy Crabbe


Everything is perfectly level, all planes are even. Why should I disrupt this space? What's missing? THE FEMALE FORM, emotion, pathos, misery, blood and guts and beauty in the wreckage, the lone female voice crying out. For that I need Tori (Amos)

"And I wondered when will I learn guess I was in Deeper than I thought I was if I have enough love for the both of us "just stay". From "Strange" by Tori Amos

I am fighting to say alive emotionally.

Musical Ambiance: Boards of Canada ~ "The Campfire Headphase", Air, Milosh, Tori Amos ~ "Scarlet's Walk"


Waiting, endless waiting. Waiting for something to happen. Making it happen.

Serving self. Serving others.

Feeling the balance. Staying centered.

With energy to burn.

Each canvas a birth, a rebirth, struggling to assert itself. To live. To be human.

How to transcend self and self serving? Through painting and service to others. By putting emotion on paper. By transforming pain into purpose - a reason to live.

Waiting - acrylic & pastel on silk - 3.5' x 3.5' 

I'm not feeling beautiful. I'm just me - trying to survive, feeling the animal in you.

Pain borders on ecstasy, or have you been sleeping?

Musical Inspiration: Booth - "Carbon", Jose Gonzalez - "Veneer".