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Seeing Light

Work in progress

Works in progress


“Ignore time.
Relinquish ideas and concepts.
Embrace the Oneness.

This is the Integral Way.”

Lao Tzu
Hua Hu Ching

Thank you Matt & Hannah Gould for this amazing Spring Bouquet

Spring has sprung. Patio impromptu art installation.

I love the way women are innovative with the most mundane materials at times. One of my favorite woman made soft sculptures is the crochet hats made to cover the spare toilet tissue on the back of the commode. Who woulda thunk it.
I had gotten these gloves soaking wet working in the garden. & Now I pronounce them Patio sculpture . 🙂

WCAGa Ruth Schowalter

Ruth Schowalter on blogathon for WCA Ga

Reach for the apple

From the series: Inspired by Eve
Prints available

the art organizing days……tbc Callahan McDonough

I was one of the founding mothers of the Atlanta Women’s Art Collective ca. 1978 & Also the Atlanta Art Workers Coalition ca. 1978

Above our 10th Street Art Gallery.

This is the teaser of my post so I can put myself in the que for today.

To be added to be continued  tomorrow.  Out of focus for tonight.


Buy Art not People

artists blogathon day 12  C4 Atlanta

prompt: RANT

an impassioned form of expression.

There are more slaves today on the planet than any other time in history. Human trafficking, involves women, children and men.  If there is something to truly rant about for me this is it. Why  in the name of all that is can’t we find a way to be kind, share resources, and protect those in need.  About a year ago I did a tryptch for ‘Not For Sale’ Georgia chapter of NFS.  I wish I could say that the prints sold like crazy, all proceeds going to NFS. But no they did not. And in fact in an email somewhere in this process someone said of the prints ‘ WELL you know art doesn’t sell’!  So I rant about man’s inhumanity to man. I rant about all the ways people devalue each other, including us artists; certainly less tragic, but still un-necessary.

These giclee prints on archival paper, continue to be available here on my website under tab:  NFS 

Down the yellow brick road – day 10




C4 Atlanta blogathon Day 10

Today’s prompt is all about risks, the ones I might take, the ones I’ve taken, the ones that worked, and ones that did not.

I’ve been pretty lucky; took risks and lept into the unknown, even when it was unclear if  it would ‘work out’ . However things went, the results were more opportunities, some hard knocks and more to learn. And  leap again.  About 30 years ago I started a floorcloth business, Ruby Slippers Studio, to address ‘making a living’, ‘making consistent money’ from a craft that embodied my sensibility as an artist but is a ‘decorative’ and ‘utilitarian’ product.  I have indeed made many sales and commissions, but not enough to have a steady stream of income. So yes, it has worked out, in that I have developed my designs and craft and have some results, but no, it has not work out to garner that magical artists’ steady stream of income. I am a very entrepreneurial person, so perhaps the next risk  should be to market them even more agressively.

Taking a risk is like being Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz. You just need something to stir you up (like a tornado), a bit of  power (like smashing the Wicked Witch & suddenly being the owner of a pair of Ruby Slippers). Then you need a community, some magic( like all the folks in Oz, even the Wizard, OR like an art community hmmm like C4 ATL perhaps)?  Finally you need companions for the journey who will help you remember your heart, your brains and your courage, and yes the guardian, (which is what ToTo means in Sanskrit).

 The way I see it, we are all on the yellow brick road and to be on the yellow brick road, to take a step, move forward is bravely, boldly taking a risk.

C4 community: ideas you have for marketing are most welcomed.  Lovely to be on and adventure with fellow artists of heart, courage, and intelligence.



Art – Red Sea – Blue Sea




adjectives  1.being the only one of its kind; unlike anything else.”the situation was unique in modern politics”

  1. synonyms:


    singlesolelone, unrepeated,unrepeatablesolitaryexclusiverare,uncommonunusualsui generisinformalone-off, one-of-a-kind, once-in-a-lifetime, one-shot“each site is unique


  2. ART can only be of service to the market if it is outside the market.  Otherwise the market dictates the art, art functions outside of  systems. Art functions non-competitively within the culture of the artist and her experience.

  3. C4 Atlanta Blogathon – Day.8.Feb.2014.

a quickie post to end a really fun evening of comradrie, good friends, being in the NOW.

March 4.2014 day 4 blogathon C4 AtlantaI am wiped out from having sooooo much fun with my girlfriends in our Skinny Supper Club ! L>R Linda Knight, Judi Knight, Dean aka Robyn Elliott, + ME . Today’s prompt was filled with lists and more lists, goals visions etc. all good stuff. My vision for myself and my life is to have this kind of fun as often as possible, it fuels my art and everything around me. And in terms of long term, well the best goal  I can have is to be totally in the NOW.  That’s my list for tonight fellow art bloggers. Sweet creative dreams and artmaking tomorrow.

SPIRITUAL ART PILGRIM INTERVIEW: Callahan Pope McDonough–Feminist Artist Engaged in Timelessness with Passion and Soul

art photo 19Callahan McDonough Talking Hallelujah Truth

SPIRITUAL ART PILGRIM INTERVIEW: Callahan Pope McDonough–Feminist Artist Engaged in Timelessness with Passion and Soul

 *note* all copyrights  this interview: Ruth Schowalter & photos


In the second week of May 2013, following Callahan Pope McDonough’s art opening of “A Sword of Moonlight and Imperishable Love” at Sight and Sound Gallery in the StudioPlex, I ventured to the Old Fourth Ward, to Callahan’s loft space where she works and lives.
Hallelujah for the light and spaciousness of her studio living space, for it elevated me to an altered state of consciousness. Afternoon sunlight illuminated her large colorful paintings, which spoke loudly and deeply to me. Callahan’s organic gluten free chocolate chip cookies and herbal tea kept me grounded as we engaged in the following interview.
 art photo 2Callahan McDonough Studio Hallelujah Truth
LIGHT FILLED SPACIOUSNESS. Callahan’s studio space in the Old Fourth Ward dazzles with its high ceilings and sunfilled walls, countertops, and floor! Her current work is now on exhibit at the Sight and Sound Gallery in the Old Fourth Ward, Atlanta, Georgia, USA. “A Sword of Moonlight and Imperishable Love” can be viewed until June 28, 2013. Original pieces of her work are available for purchase, as well as giclees at affordable prices. (photo by Hallelujah Truth)
HALLELUJAH TRUTH: Give me your personal definition of ART

CALLAHAN: Well, that’s like saying what’s my definition of God?
There are different ways to go about defining art. There is a lot out there today that’s called art, and it’s not art. In some ways it easier to say what its not, overall, it’s complex, subjective and mind boggling.
HALLELUJAH TRUTH: In this moment, how would you go about defining art? It’s okay if your definition is primitive.
CALLAHAN:  When I was in art school— the big “A” art was a constant source of debate. In my view, this big “A” art has to have some kind of relationship to art as it relates to art history. A sense of context, even if one is defying art history, you have to have it in your bones what you are making in relationship to the art, the history that’s preceded. Some exceptions to this would be naïve artists, like Howard Finster.I guess, my definition of art is that it has relevance and impact beyond the meaning it has for me, the maker of art.

 art photo 1364846398_The_Dream_of_a_Common_Lang_1
HALLELUJAH TRUTHExplain relevance.
CALLAHAN: I don’t know how to explain relevance exactly but that everything is related and has impact. Relevance is another word for relationship.
But nobody can ultimately codify this relevance because it is a paradox. Most people who are artists are renegades. The nature of this paradox is that there are two realities, that seem to contradict but within the nature of paradox, both are true at the same time. My sense of it is: relationship + connection of all life forms.
 art photo-mother-may-2013-revised


CALLAHAN: Spirituality is something I have a sense about, what I consider a deep knowing based on my experience of it. It really defies description, but words are what we have and need to describe life, but of course words and our minds are limited. So that is my instinct/knowing; i.e., my sense is that there is something that is me and simultaneously greater than me which I am and we all are part of. I personally choose to call this God. And so this question is a little bit like your question, “What is art.”

I can tell you what “spirituality” is not.
It is not some big guy somewhere in the clouds like a puppeteer, proclaiming: ‘Here I give you goodies today and I withhold goodies from these other folks.’ That is a no brainer. Those paradigms of a deity that no longer serve, they limit us and create confusion.
In my view “Religious” institutions have given God a bad name. Religions have been coopted for patriarchal agendas, money and control. There are some religions that are transcending this pattern, but if there is a dogma within a teaching that dictates how we live beyond, love each other and do not harm yourself or another, it’s been coopted for other agendas.
There is no specific version of God. We make symbols to convey our pretty limited perceptions of God and that is where art can be profound, elegant, and diverse.  Art ultimately leaves the experience in the hands of the viewer.
For me, I can call spirituality God, or you can call it Mother Nature or M & M’s. “It” doesn’t need you to name it. I do have a sense that there is something profound about Life itself.In the book, Not God, which was Ernest Kurtz’s PhD thesis about the history of Alcoholics Anonymous, Kurtz describes that his research showed that Alcoholics who came into recovery and had lasting sobriety/recovery where able to make the shift from “I am God”  (be there a God OR NOT, whichever is so) to:  “I am not God”.
What that translates to is that none of us can “carry the worry” or “solve all the problems” or control anything completely. Frequently in childhood we imagine that’s our job and then that causes a sense of being alone, cut off from humanity, anything spiritual, our authentic selves.
In my generation, there was so much emphasis on finding identity. There was a kind of narcissism in the searching for me, me, me….
There needs to be a shift to include me+you+WE.  …………. Continue reading »

It had to begin with Eve

This is the companion print to “Reach for an apple” 2012 both prints 11″ x 15″   available for purchase  : Ronna Detrick   30.00 ea.  

To listen and read in more depth Eve’s Voice:

Inspired by Eve
A workbook for self-trust, deep knowing,

and a delicious life of desire.
Audio. Text. Reflective questions. Changed story.

Ronna :   “Artist Callahan McDonough and I are collaborating together to create and curate a collection of 30 unique (and gorgeous) paintings inspired by my writings that re-imagine and redeem the stories of women in Scripture.  “

“Callahan listened to me muse and wonder and exegete Eve’s story. She took notes. She felt deeply. And then she visualized what she heard me say; what she understood as the themes and elements of Eve’s story about which I’m most passionate. The day she sent me the photograph was not unlike seeing that first ultrasound image of a new baby. And the day she sent me the 11×15  beautiful print, I felt like I was holding that child in my arms (without the labor).” ” Callahan McDonough, artist of “Eve” and many works to come.”


Callahan:  “Ronna: I experience profound affirmation from you and your writing. I feel seen and not alone…and this goodness brings me back to myself.  There is a line in Adrienne Rich’s poem Transcendental Etude where she says, ” there comes a time when we have to take ourselves more seriously or die.”   More seriously as in being fully self expressed in our lives…This  is what calls to me in Eve and her Sisters; to sit with her, with you,  and to co-create on “holy ground.” 
more on:

Eve’s Voice

The Renegade ~

Eve. Her name elicits immediate reaction. Do you feel it? Pay attention. That spontaneous, summoned-up-from-somewhere-deep-inside response matters. It tells you something about the story you’ve been told as well as the story you are living – particularly as a woman. And aswomen, we need new stories – or at least new meaning from the old ones; new ways of understanding the old tales so that we can rewrite our own in redemptive, powerful, and renegade-like ways.

Storytelling reveals meaning without committing the error of defining it.
—Hannah Arendt, German Political Theorist

Eve’s story is the epitome of error – and harm: in fact, it has long since ceased being a story and instead hasbecome defined meaning – now ascribed to all of us. Rather than narrative, setting, context, characters, dialogue, and emotion we have theological, sociological, and psychological precepts, doctrine, dogma, right and wrong, black and white. Instead of perfection – a woman – a man – a garden – a god – a snake – an apple – and a choice, we have evil – temptation – disobedience – sin – crime – punishment – consequences – banishment – and a curse.

Eve has an opinion about all this. She has a story to tell; a conversation to have.

The Conversation ~

She feels no need to bring you up to speed – or to defend herself. She cannot escape others’ interpretations, projections, triangularizations, total contempt, or even subliminal leanings. True, some have honored her, but they have been far fewer; their voices far quieter. She may not know where you stand, but she’s pretty sure she’s heard it all before.

So let me ask you…Do you ever feel like you just can’t get out from under the weight of one choice, one action, one step taken? Like one thing that you did, maybe in the heat of the moment or maybe even something you really thought through, just all went bad?

She pauses, completely certain that you do have such a story…or at least the fear of such a thing.

What’s that story? Tell me…

She sits calmly across from you. Hands entwined around her mug of tea. Eyes looking straight at you over its rim. Waiting for your response. Knowing that you’ve got one…even if you don’t feel like revealing such.

She feels your tension and chooses to rephrase:   post by Ronna Detrick

2012 The year of the Grasshopper

I have been experimenting with some digital photography and filters. This is a Christmas ornament that I just couldn’t pack up.

Cat Woman

Cat Woman

d’arches paper, mixed media

I love cats. I love dogs too. Cats are of course, cats, and dramatically different than dogs. They seem much more self contained, they are curious, detail, at times like a piece of moving sculpture, at other times (when they are ready) they are responsive to us, and cuddle, playful. The stillness of cats represents for me the moments within myself of what T.S. Elliot called : ” The still point of the turning world”.