Our clients at the Santa Fe Youth Symphony Association (SFYSA) had their big event of the year this month. SFYSA’s 25th Anniversary Celebration benefit concert, with the theme Silverscreen: Music for Everyone, was a smashing success. Not only did SFYSA’s event fill the Lensic for a night of family fun with movie score classics performed by the Santa Fe Youth Symphony and additional performances by renowned local artists Nacha Mendez and Jono Manson, but it also raised awareness of and $25K for the organization.
Our services also included managing the production of the concert program and making sure the multimedia images and videos to be projected during the event were completed and ready for showtime.
We especially enjoyed helping to put together these 25th Anniversary videos that played throughout the concert and will also be used to promote each of the youth symphony’s programs. We were intimately involved with the process, from conducting interviews to adding the finishing touches while working with a videographer-editor to deliver the final product.
We recently placed in the New Mexico Press Women's communication contest and went on to win awards in the National Federation of Press Women's Awards!
To participate in the national awards, contestants must place first in the initial state competition.
We had a primary mission in visiting Zurich, Switzerland, to visit the Cabaret Voltaire.
Founded in 1916 by Hugo Ball, Cabaret Voltaire was literally the birthplace of Dada, the art movement, or more accurately, the anti-art movement that turned into a crucial statement and artistic outcry predicated on a protest against the horrors of World War II. The world was stunned at the carnage of the war and the Dadaists responded.
"”The war is founded on a glaring mistake, men have been confused with machines."
Other founding members were, Tristan Tzara, Richard Huelsenbeck, Marcel Janco, Sophie Tauber, and Hans Arp.
Dada was art, performance, politics, poetry, happenings, and so much more. Its impact is still being seen in the art world and Neo Dadaism is alive and well.
Cabaret Voltaire is still there and still pushing the boundaries of art, music and performance.
On a September night Mari (also an art lover) and I sat drinking beer listening to music that fit perfectly with the atmosphere in this important landmark of art. The crowd was a mixture of older and younger people. All appeared to know just how important the place they were in was. For me it was a visit that checked off an important life-list activity. Being a part-time artist who occasionally creates Dada related work, this visit was truly thrilling. The history enveloped us and it glowed in a magical way. Dada!
The exhibit at the time we were there was by Mexican artist, Carlos Amorales, a multidisciplinary artist who studied at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy and the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam.
Going to Zurich? Visit Cabaret Voltaire!
Learn more about Dada
List of Dadaists - Go Here
We've been in Berlin for a week. Taking notes. Allowing the weight of the city's complex history to sit with us.
We may have more to say later, but for now we leave you with this famous memorial.
By Mari Angulo.
Click photos for detail and captions.
10+ years ago I visited Dachau near Munich, and yesterday we visited the Sachsenhausen memorial in Oranienburg. Likely due to our turbulent status quo, this visit to the Sachsenhausen site brought up several things:
The realization that I don't have the capacity to imagine the terror of its prisoners. Amazement at the endless creativity for torturing and systematic murder of hundreds and thousands of people. A sense of being dumbfounded at the complicity of civilians coupled with an understanding of the complexity of this evil phenomenon.
While white supremacy ideals are not German, and evil is a human problem, somehow all the right ingredients came together with the right time and place for the holocaust. With white supremacy on the rise, even in Germany the extreme right wing will likely have a voice in the parliament after next week's elections. Trump is already the president of the US and there are leaders all over the western world ready to uphold fascist ideals.
Being far from resolution in this matter, we must stand our ground. We can't afford not to learn from our mistakes. There is too much at stake to flirt with these ideas or to become desensitized to the messages that uphold them. Pay attention. Speak up. We cannot be complicit.
With Germany opening its doors to over one million refugees in 2015, a means for cultural exchange and a bridge to understanding is essential.
This evening in Berlin, we were fortunate to share a meal and conversation with Syrian refugees. They cooked an incredible meal for us and we were able to chat (with our host as a translator) about their experience living in Berlin with their families, the acculturation and language classes they're taking and the challenges they are facing with their families in this new culture.
We are deeply appreciative of this exchange which was made possible by a Berliner and Hungarian journalist Anna Gyulai Gaal. Anna first had the idea to create a refugee dinner series last November, after seeing thousands of migrants crowded into the refugee camps, in government buildings or Berlin's closed down Tempelhof airport.
"Food creates an invisible bridge between people, and my biweekly refugee dinner series aims to connect Berliners to the migrants making a home in Germany."
- Anna Gyulai Gaal
If you are visiting Berlin and would like to take part in this experience, please reach out to Anna Gyulai Gaal at firstname.lastname@example.org. Anna shared that they are working on a website to form a network of hosts and expand the exchange. Anna's efforts have made international media. You can read an article by the Independent (UK) below.
Creative Visualization for Writers: An Interactive Guide for Bringing Your Book Ideas — and Your Writing Career — to Life
Author: Nina Amir
Publisher: Writer’s Digest Books (October 18, 2016)
Paperback: 224 pages
To become a more creative, confident, and productive writer, you need to focus your attention, visualize your desires, set clearly defined goals, and take action toward your dreams. Let Creative Visualization for Writers be your guide on this journey of self-discovery. You’ll learn how to:
About the Author
Nina Amir started as a journalist. She has a BA in magazine journalism with a concentration in psychology. After working as an editor and writer for a variety of regional magazines, a national corporation in New York City, and a small consulting firm, she started my own freelance writing and design business.
Working on other writers’ manuscripts sparked her desire to write a book of on topics she felt passionate about: personal development and practical spirituality. More than publishing a book, she wanted to build a business around those books.
Setting out to learn all she could about the publishing industry she got involved with the San Francisco Writer’s Conference and started the Write Nonfiction in November Challenge (now known as National Nonfiction Writing Month). In April 2012, her first book How to Blog a Book was published, became an Amazon bestseller almost immediately, and has remained one ever since. The Author Training Manual was published by Writer’s Digest Books just two years later and was a bestseller before any books passed through the register on Amazon. In addition she’s self-published several more ebooks, all of which have made it onto the Amazon Top 100 right away. In fact, she’s had as many as four books on one Amazon Top 100 list at the same time!
Thoughts on the Book
Amir's new book is hard to categorize. It's an activity book, it's inspiring to read, yet highly informational. She's going deep, bringing in research about left/right brain, and even chromotherapy to support her material. It's a book that asks you to dig deep and know yourself in ways you might not expect. It's a call to action.
I, myself am not an author, and writer is far from a noun I'd use to describe myself. However, I found this book to be a fantastic exercise even for "non-writers." Interestingly enough, my background is in business and marketing and I found direct correlations to crucial elements of business and strategic planning in "Creative Visualization." Even the sections are organized in a way that flows like a strategic planning process (except it's so fun you barely notice). You can practically write your own author Mission and marketing plan once you're done with the book!
Amir makes it clear at the beginning, that you don't have to read the book from start to finish to get what you want out of it "You may want to focus on the Goals section if you need to set intentions, or spend time with the Creativity section if you want to develop ideas or stimulate your muse. Use the coloring pages when you want to relax or focus. Use the affirmations when you are ready to commit to changing a particular negative thought." I found this to be true. This book is a companion that you can read again and again and build your own adventure each time.
There are six clearly outlined sections in the book. She begins with Self Exploration, she's asking you to dig deep and ask questions about what you know about yourself. Where are you now as a writer and person? As Amir explored the concept of "knowing yourself" as essential to being a good writer, I couldn't help but think of Hemingway, who wrote his weight down and kept a log of what he ate on the wall of his bathroom. Talk about really striving to know oneself. In the next section, Vision, you're looking at the future. What's next for you? Can you visualize your book, your success, even your ideal reader? In the Goals section, she addresses intention and goal setting, and she's literally asking you to draw a map to success. In the Creativity section, there are exercises to help develop ideas and stimulate your own creativity. In Focus, there's even a section with coloring pages, but it's not all "fun and games," even in the creativity section you're prompted to brainstorm and plan ideas for things like your author website, a potential talk about your book, and even blogging topics. All things that authors need to know and think about "outside" of their writing. I think the section about focus is extremely important because writers/authors tend to be creative, interested individuals at the core, so it's easy to jump from one thing to the next. Amir is asking you to check yourself and stay accountable to the plans you make and outline a clear path. And finally, there are the Affirmation Pages that lead with a Muhammad Ali quote: “It’s the repetition of affirmations that leads to belief. And once that belief becomes a deep conviction, things begin to happen.” This is literally a section of affirming prompts where writers (or anyone!) have a chance to build confidence and weed out negativity by writing about themselves, in their craft, in an positive way.
There's so much to be learned and practiced in "Creative Visualization." It's not just about the ideas and the craft itself, it's also about accountability and goal setting. Amir is not only asking the reader to make a plan but also to believe enough in oneself to know that you can do it.
This book will make an excellent gift for so many writers I know.
We created this "book of memories" photo book to document the launch and promotion of one of our client's books. Yep, writing a book and having it published is a big deal! See Rebecca Pott Fitton for more information about her journey.
Click to view some screen shots of the photo book
Sharing our creative efforts, work and travel.