Lola and Floyd (Flola) paid a visit to the studio last month and we decided to give them their own video channel. Check out our studio basset hounds! Enjoy.
So, we do not live in a perfect world. As much as we try and as much as we strive to attain it , it just doesn't exist. For those of us that are in any way creative, I think this is probably the most crippling attitude that steals our joy and takes away the very essence of our creativity.
For example: We say to ourselves things like; " I'm too old to learn to sing." " I don't have time to learn that instrument." " I'm not going to finish that song because I'm not happy with the bridge." " I'm not going to finish that script because what would I do with it anyway?" " I won't audition for the part because I'm too fat, too old or too young." " I really don't like my headshots." " I don't have headshots." " I am limited on funds," and the list goes on and on. Before you know it, Life has passed you by and you look back and say "Why didn't I do That?"
One of the greatest gifts we can give ourselves is the gift of accepting and embracing our limitations. Once we do that, something wonderful happens, Its called individualism, style, brand or whatever else you want to call it. It's what makes us, well, "us!"
This year the only resolution that I have decided upon is the resolve to not take myself so seriously. I want to embrace the limitations that surround me and use to my advantage the very things that thwart my objectives.
This concept is not only challenging, its exciting as well. I have challenged my production team at the studio to choose one or two goals that are somewhat unattainable but could be within reach. The objective: "Find a way to make it work." It will be interesting to see what the power of necessity renders.
I'm pretty sure we can all look at what we can't do. Let's focus our energy in 2017 upon what we can do. I want to look back on this blog on December 31st 2017 and see how much I have accomplished by adopting this way of thinking. Please take the challenge with me, Dont allow yourself to become immobilized by the curse of perfectionism. This year, I want to encourage you to look beyond the inabilities and focus on the possibilities. You may really be surprised at what the outcomes will render. "Carpe-Diem!"
Share with us your success story here:
The Lawrenceville Georgia hometown parade was a spectacular event that was organized by the City of Lawrenceville to bring the community together. I sincerely do not believe anyone was in store for the magnitude of its success that rendered a participation of over 30,000 people including The Budweiser Clydesdales horses. Our humble little float was carefully designed with a great deal of love and care. On a 6 foot by 10 foot trailer, we designed a life size picture book of " A Christmas Carol " by Charles Dickens. The cast dressed in period costumes and appeared on the float as if coming out of the book. Carollers in the period costumes followed behind the float and sang Christmas Carols to the crowd. Our artists ignited the start of the parade with a superb mannequin challenge. The night was chilly with just the right bite of cold to establish the holiday spirit. Carolers, cloggers and marching bands paraded down the streets, childrens faces lit up as our cast sang and greeted the audience. The parade was a team effort and definetly one worth pausing for thought and writing about. It really makes me excited about coming back next year and building a bigger better float that all of the children and community can enjoy. Merry Christmas Lawrenceville, you did very well!
We experience fall and the joys of the changes of colors all around us. We choose our pumpkins, visit festivals and get outside to see all the beauty of nature. However, it just seems to me that right after the ghostly howls of Halloween we skip right to Christmas. So, what does this say about us as a society that we cant stop and enjoy what we have and be grateful for our friends, families and communities?
I say it is travesty to not embrace what should be the most important of holidays. Keeping the gratitude is infectious. I dare you to pay for the persons coffee behind you in the line at McDonalds or call that family member you haven't seen or talked to for awhile just to say "Hey, I'm thinking about you and I am grateful for you." No one else can be you or do what you do. This is why our DNA is in fact our very own and is not identically copied in another human being. So, what am I grateful for? The studio, music, the auditions, my home, or maybe my car, my friends? Yes all of those, but what I'm most grateful for today is my child. The most beautiful, talented and unique creation entrusted to me by God. That's why I'm launching her Christmas solo today of all days, because, well, I'm grateful. Take time to be grateful for the people in your life. I promise it is a great way to start the Christmas season.
Well, I think just being real is the most important thing. I admit that there are days I look around at what I'm doing and think "can I do this?" And realize no, I can't. If it takes a village to raise a child, then it must take a city to raise a production company. I have a great team around me. So, in the midst of individual lessons, theater productions, filming, writing and designing costumes, how do I manage? Well, I realize my potential while taking into consideration my limitations. Its a delicate balance:
For instance, Scrooge is in full swing. We are excited to bring this production forward, however there are elements of challenge that arise as a result: Our black box stage is tiny. So, we cant fit full sized period costumes into the area. We have opted to go with the costumes without the crinolines and hoops for all but 2 of the costumes. It works for our staging area. However, we are approved to be in the county parade. NOW we need full sized hoops and crinolines. How do you do this when your budget has already been spent and new additions are in demand? You hit the thrift store! I am without a doubt a "Park Avenue girl." Yes, I said, Park Avenue and not the one in New York City in the rag district. The Thrift store in Lawrenceville Georgia. When you do community productions on a shoe string budget you become very resourceful. For a modest price of .50 cents I purchased draperies and a green jacket. Yes, I said .50 cents. I called in my wing-man designer, Debbie DiJak and pulled out the miles and miles (okay, I exaggerated wee bit) of draperies and we brainstormed. I brought out the studio mannequin I call Eva (Short for Eva Cassidy) and started cutting away... The result was a do-able period costume without the hefty price tag. Since this model worked at a fraction of the cost, we will most likely do more of these designs. Its important to surround yourself with like -minded people who are willing to enrich the lives of others around us. If I could encourage anyone today, it would be in this way: Think outside the box. Just because your key doesn't fit doesn't mean the house isn't yours, it just means you have to find the right entrance. Until next time, Im Lisa Bastian and this is from the Directors Desk
The nights have become cooler and the sting of the summer heat begins to subside. Everywhere we turn, we see beautiful colors in gold, red, orange and amber paint our landscapes. I look out the window of my office where I have a full view of the park. Its peaceful and serene. The changes of seasons reminds me of the beauty that is all around us. And then in that quiet still moment I remember why I'm here. Its to share beauty with others. Music, drama, film, its to share the story and share it well. I take a deep breath of gratitude and close my eyes to exhale and begin thinking of all the wonderful things we can do here today at Lux. All of a sudden I am jolted by the piercing sounds of sirens and construction and become painfully aware that I am in downtown small town Grayson Ga. Im on Mainstreet. As much as I want to embrace the the colors and the magic, it is overshadowed by the noise. It affects practically every aspect of what I do. A momentary surge of frustration races through my body, irritation and agitation begin to creep up the back of my neck. and I stop. I have two choices; I can give into this frustration and lament for the rest of the day or I can choose to ignore it and look past the busy avenue to the beauty that lies beyond. If I give in to the first, the result will render itself incomplete, inferior, not up to par. If I choose to ignore it, I may still find some of the same infringing elements but with confidence will achieve my goals. In the process I will know that I have done the best job I can do and that no matter how hard we may try to control every facet around us, in all truth we have no control of what happens around us. I conclude that from this momentary exhibition of contest that we all really do see what we want to see. Some would pass by this window and see construction, dust, equipment. Others would see progress. However, I wonder how many would see beyond the noise and confusion to the beautiful park and joggers on the side walk enjoying a fall day?
I sit down with pen in hand and choose to embrace what is here, what is good, what is beautiful and share it with others. And come to the conclusion that attitude is everything!
A girls weekend at Sleepy Hallow in Murphy North Carolina has been beyond anything I could have ever dreamed. I simply do not wish to leave. The weather has been perfect and the accommodations pretty darned "fancy. " I mean who doesn't want to wake to the sun rising over beautiful lake Hiawassi or spend evenings in the theater room watching chick flicks. How about the motion detected garbage cans that you don't even have to touch? I am quite sure that my basset hound Floyd would NOT appreciate that bit of savvy technology at all. Did I mention the massage chair that everyone will want to fight over? As much as I have loved these accommodations, what really has made this trip special are the ladies I have shared it with. There comes a point and a time in everyone's life that the masks come off and we stand vulnerable and naked A true friend is someone who loves you in spite of yourself. They see beyond the facade of what we portray to the world and they examine the windows of our souls with compassion, empathy and support. We may or may not feel deserving of it, but whatever the case I leave here grateful and a better person having shared it with two beautiful ladies I call my friends. Until next time........www.SleepyHallowVacationRetreat.com
Never underestimate the value of a much needed rest. After writing and directing back to back projects, one can experience a sort of creative "burn out." Its important to re-fire and recharge. My "girl -power team of three decided to pack up the mini van and head to the mountains of North Carolina for R&R. So, what happens when 2 writers and a an I.T savvy expert get away and are sequestered into a peaceful setting with a glorious view? The answer is ...this blog, lol! After a glass of wine, the creative "juices" begin to flow once again and new characters for new projects are birthed. The "staleness" of the last seasons are but a bygone memory. Our vibrational level is raised and we are recharged. Its evident in the breeze and the changing leaves that autumn is a reminder that seasons change as the seasons of our lives change. We can welcome the changes with fresh perspectives and linger upon the positive possibilities that await us. So cheers to my two besties and the adventures that lie ahead!
Here at Sleepyhollow in Murphy North Carolina
PS The pictures do not do this place justice.
Dr. Lisa Bastian - Artistic Director