a journey of sorts…

"Rather than love, than money, than faith, than fame, than fairness, give me truth." – HDT

Month: September, 2013

Direction

Much of the writing has been taking place in my journal lately in a more poetic form. Lyrics. A more inward type of focus.

I have been taking much of the time that I spend and drastically changing up my motives, my direction, what I am putting as priority and why. I recently saw an article from a great author that I follow about being fruitful vs. just doing busy work. I have taken much of it into consideration and practice lately. Thanks Kristin.

One of the segments that really stuck out to me was this quote:

One of the most common phrases in the English language? “If I could only find the time…”

Okay, sorry to break the news but time isn’t hidden in the couch cushions like loose change, Cheerios and that remote control we haven’t seen in a month. We can’t find time. We’re given time. How we spend it’s our choice.

Awesome words. I feel that much of the running around and busyness that I was involving myself in was merely for the sake of feeling important. I was afraid that if I stopped doing, doing, doing, then I would  be observed as wasting my time and the things I do would not be considered pointless. I am not sure if this makes sense. It doesn’t really make sense to me either. All I do know is that by re-prioritizing and shifting the progression, I am being much more aware and focused on the type of openness that is my ability. I am being much more selective in what I am doing based on how important it is to me or how much it coincides with my direction. I have the ability to change, develop, grow and create my own reality in ways described by a friend and mentor lately. Thanks Sarah.

We can manifest all that we are and all who we are in a very perceptive manner. When we realize who we are, amazing things happen and everything around us feels brighter. We are the light that shines bright each and every day. – Sarah (a friend)

I am creating and realizing.
I am a doer.
I am a seeker.
I do not want knowledge for the sake of knowledge or power. Knowledge is of the mind. It is how you utilize the tools of the mind and through the use of those tools that you can transform your own spirit and reality, into that of a peaceful state. There has been too much “I” in my life and not enough presence. This is realization.

I have a desire to get back to California. This might seem like a random statement but it is one of my directions I am looking at. In the spirit of the moment, here are some originals from a couple of years back when I stopped in L.A. to stay with some friends. I was lucky enough to find these and several other awesome photos on a random flash drive of mine. Pretty much all that remains from the hard drive crash last month.

Take a moment to gander and I hope you enjoy them as much as I do. I am slowly building back up a brand new portfolio and may include these in there. There will definitely be prints available for viewing and to order. I am not one to really sell my art, but if you are attached to the pieces, and would like to offer donations once they are up online, I would accept with great appreciation as a brother.

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I hope that each of you will take the time, time that is already there and ready for you to grab up and create whatever moment you want, and look at your own direction. Let that moment be reality if even for an instant and then just go.

It’s life baby. Peace and love. – Alexander Johnny

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A Reblog from “Feet From Shore”

Hey everyone,

Here is a very touching story. I came across this while sitting down to catch up on the blog and thank people for stopping by mine.

People doing good things for others in the name of love and spirit. Watch Fred’s video below. This guy is awesome.

The post below is from Yael’s blog “Feet From Shore” and the original post is here.


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These are Yael’s words:

“Two days ago when I got home from work I found Dan in front of his computer absorbed by whatever he was watching. I hugged him from behind to let him know that I was home cause he didn’t even notice I was there yet. He turned around, kissed me and said ‘Oh sweet pea, you need to watch this video’. I could see in his eyes that he was genuinely moved by it, so I instantly got excited to see what was all about.

What he showed me was a heart-warming story that made me drop some tears. Fred Stobaugh is a 96-year-old man who wrote a song to his wife one month after she passed away. He saw on the newspaper that a local music studio was organizing a singer-songwriter competition, and even though he is not a musician, he sent the lyrics and a letter explaining his 75 years of love with Lorraine. It was the perfect way to thank her for all the years she spent by his side loving him unconditionally. He didn’t expect any response, but the studio decided to bring Fred’s lyrics to live for him with professional musicians and singers. Fred couldn’t hold back tears after listening to the song for the first time.

This story made me appreciate the time, youth and family that I have more than ever. ‘Oh sweet Lorraine’ – a great song with a great story behind.

Bring a tissue if you play the video…”

-Thanks for reading and hope you all enjoyed this as much as I did.  – Alexander Johnny

A faraway friend.

I recently was blessed to speak with a good friend and mentor of mine. We caught up, swapped some photos of each other’s recent work or explorations. I wanted to share some of the photos I received, while keeping this friend anonymous per request. I feel this makes the photos even that much more of a romantic view into why, when and for what reason each photo was taken. It’s left up to the viewer to simply enjoy the natural beauty. Simple. Is that not what life is all about?

I hope you will enjoy these as much as I did…

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Artists with drive AND good vibe.

So this was a long time coming in regards to me typing this up but I am happy to say I finally was able to sit down and write it. And not for my own sake but to direct the attention to two people whose efforts and work are for the greater good of our planet and humanity.

Two awesome people who I have done work recently with in the past had some great projects come up that I have been wanting to share with the readers on here.

Abby Ray, who I have known for several years since the day we first sat down in a coffee shop to talk collaboration, has been an inspiration and an angel. Her newest project she informed me about is her work with the charity and peace organization known as Team Green World (TGW). With the help of Little Eden’s Studio in Nashville, Abby and TGW went ahead and created an awesome piece of music to help support Feed Lucas County Children, an organization from hers and my hometown of Toledo. I am sure you will enjoy listening to “Love Can Feed the World” below or visit TGW’s website here. In addition, go ahead and support Abby here on CD Baby where you can purchase the song for a mere buck. Love you Abby.

Image from the Red Cross website.

Additionally, my great friend Bob Milano has also been making moves with his own music in the local scene back home. A recent album was put together this past spring season in order to promote local Toledo music and give back to the Northwest Redcross charity and was sold throughout the northwest Ohio region. You can’t beat that. Two great causes in one. Bob Milano graciously contributed his time and talents  to the track list amongst some other great Toledo artists like Alyson Stoner and Crystal Bowersox. You can catch the full track list here at the Red Cross website. Well done my good man. Wish you all the best as we finish up this second half of 2013.

Links:
http://www.abbyray.com

http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/teamgreenworldabbyray1

http://www.teamgreenworld.com/abby_ray

http://www.redcross.org/news/article/Northwest-Ohio-Musicians-Unite-for-the-American-Red-Cross

Changing Daily.

So if you haven’t been keeping up, I recently got back to Denver from visiting my home in Ohio. The time spent visiting family was great, having not been home from my travels in almost a year. During the awesome trip, I had an unfortunate run-in with some computer trouble, and a hard drive crash caused me to lose, well, everything. I know, rookie mistake, not backing up my files. I felt like such a noob. But here I am making strides once again, new hard drive, new fire burning inside me. I have nothing left from the past work I have done but I am taking this as a fresh start, and with that, my negative outlook on this computer sitch is pretty nonexistent. It’s quite positive actually.

With all of this news going on, and the past getting set behind me, I’d like to dive right into some questions, some answers, some ideas and the like. First off, there are a couple of things I would like to divulge about my time away from the screen. Having a dead piece of technology, though challenging to the normal routine, is possibly one of the most freeing experiences in this society. I don’t think I can compare it to summiting the Rockies, but honestly it is close up there. I could step away from the technology for a while, and was able to reconnect with those experiences that are often overlooked, such as biking to the park in the middle of the day when normally I would have been working on the computer. I was able to jump back into some extra yoga classes at the studio I work at and take part in more than just a couple of classes that week. I went home early and got to spend some time hanging with my brother instead of burning the candle at both ends and jumping from the job into a cafe to salvage their wi-fi over cups over lukewarm coffee and tired eyes. I’ve been rambling a bit here so let me cut to it by saying that one can really step back from their routine, take a look at this busy work that is constantly bombarding their schedules and appreciate some simple moments once in a while. It won’t hurt any, trust me. It’s so simple yet so difficult for many, who, even though they have the best intentions to make moves to rest in the park, or try to make more time for their family, just can’t seem to do so. Here’s your solution folks. Unplug. 

I am taking from this past week’s lesson learned and jumping right into my next statement. All of the recent events have granted me new insights. I am making changes daily, and to go along with my hard drive crashing and losing all of my past art work, I am realizing that sitting in the past is not doing anything for me. Those daily changes are happening and I am not the same person I was yesterday, an hour ago, or even a minute ago. There’s no need to sit in the pool of remorse or regret from past events when you are whoever you want to be at this very moment. That’s all you need to tell yourself. (Mic drop baby) – Alexander Johnny.

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AIGA Toledo “Rock Paper Sizzle”

This past weekend an event took place back in Toledo, OH that AIGA Toledo put on called “Rock, Paper, Sizzle.” It was a show in tribute to the art form of a record album. Artists were invited to contribute by recreating an existing album cover or in my case, I basically made up my own. All of the original album covers were then framed in an album frame and hung for the show. I am still waiting for event photos to be posted but the art below should entertain you in the meantime.

The quote used for the show’s intro:

“The size, shape, smell, texture and sound of a vinyl record; how do you explain to that teenager who doesn’t know that it’s a more beautiful musical experience than a mouse click? You put the record in their hands. You make them drop the needle on the platter. Then they’ll know.” – Jack White

I went ahead and included some of the pieces with qualities or styles that I enjoyed or who’s unique style was very inspiring to me, not because of the band or musician whose album was redone. Take a look at the pieces below and you can view the entire set here.

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Janis Joplin – Pearl
by Chelsea Irons

Eryn_Pierce-1024x1024
Tegan & Sara – Heartthrob
by Eryn Pierce

Phoebe_Ballard
Guided by Voices – Instructions to the Rusty Time Machine
by Phoebe Ballard

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Skillet – Rise
by Sarah Byer

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Lana Del Rey – Young and Beautiful
by Sara Blease

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The City in Living and Dying ColorThe last two were done by yours truly. The image in color is the final product and below is my original transfer file that was placed over a used record album I got at Goodwill in the final piece.  Enjoy. Feel free to view the photos at my Behance profile too.

Thanks for checking this out.

Peace and love. If you have your own artist portfolio started online or are working on anything, I would love to see it. Send me your links and I will be sure to stop by and check them out.

Alexander Johnny

9 Reasons Why You Would Like To Travel Solo

An excellent post. Here’s to those who take their dreams, and fondness for discovery and exploration and make it happen. Perhaps you should read through these and adopt your own adventure plan. I have mine.

The Travel Monster

While it’s wonderful to share a special trip and new experiences with friends, a partner, or family, there’s a compelling case for travel alone from time to time. Solo travel can work for anyone, whether you’re single, in a relationship, extroverted, or introverted, and here are 9 good reasons why you should try it. This entry is a re-post from lifehack.org since I found this one pretty awesome and on the spot! Enjoy reading.

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I promised you a photo.

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This is the photo I mentioned in my previous post that I was going to upload.

A quick edit from the road back to one of the places I consider a home, Denver.

There’s a moment in one’s soul where they experience a shift from thinking they know a physical space or recognize it, to realizing to numerous layers of mental, spiritual and physical that exist within a space. The “home” can be such a space. Where you thrive or where you are at peace may not be that actual spot you rest your head at night, but could be anywhere, any place, any time you choose. Be at peace within your own moment and that will be your home my brothers and sisters. 

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