Thursday, May 26, 2011

My Weekend ~ Part 3

The past couple days I've been sharing my LOVE of Tribal Fest, the alternative dance festival for tribal style belly dancers. You can see Part 1 HERE, and Part 2 HERE.

Today, I'm sharing the dancers.

Ahhh, they are so amazing and inspiring!

Now, a little bit of background is in order I think. When many people hear the words Belly Dance, there is often a common image that comes to mind: sequins, flesh, dollar bills... but Tribal Style Belly Dance? This is a whole 'nother thing entirely! I won't go into the whole history of it, but if you'd like to learn more, here is a good place to start.

For Tribal Fest, dancers come from all over the world ~ Japan, Australia, Italy, the U.K., to name just a few. And dancers have interpreted the word *tribal* in many ways! It's a colorful mix of dance styles, music, and cultures. And pretty much the fringe side of belly dance. I think you'll be surprised and delighted!

Okay, but, before I get to the photos, there is one sad note. We raced across the state to get there in time to see Kundalini Belly Dance Tribe (the troupe I used to dance with). Only to get there 5 minutes too late! Wah! There was a no-show and they got bumped up on the schedule, so we missed them! Major disappointment!

So, all right, now, on to the photos!

The first photo is of Kajira Djoumahna, she's on the left, the Goddess-Queen who started this whole festival eleven years ago! Thank you Kajira, for bringing such beauty to this world!

The second photo is of Carolena Nericcio, center, usually credited for starting this whole Tribal Style movement! She's amazing. If you are ever in San Francisco, make sure you take the time to see her and Fat Chance Belly Dance perform. Stunning! It was one of their performances that got me into belly dance classes in the first place. Thank you Carolena, for inspiring so many of us!

The third photo is of
Zoe Jakes. She is a Tribal Fusion dancer. Innovative, daring, and a sensational dancer! Her performance is like a theatrical show, amazing!

I don't have names for all the rest of the dancers, but check out the Tribal Fest 2011 You Tube channel over the next few days (they are adding more each day). You can watch them in action!


Kajira of Black Sheep Belly Dance

Carolena of Fat Chance Belly Dance

Zoe Jakes

Some skeleton dancers that were part of Zoe Jakes' set


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

My Weekend ~ Part 2

Last weekend I got to hang out with some of the grooviest folks ever!

My absolute favorite festival, Tribal Fest 11, happened last weekend.

You can read a little more about it here. It's a festival for tribal style belly dancers.

There is a VIBE at this festival, this festival for dancers that goes beyond the dance. It is a community, a tribe, a family of women and some men. It is alternative, fun, colorful, supportive, rockin', risk-taking, brash, and just plain lovely. I feel challenged, and totally comfortable, all at the same time. Something akin to, "these are my PEOPLE!"

And you know? More than anything?
I'd love to bring that groovin' vibe to where I live.
Some how... some day...

For now, I wanted to share a little of that here in this space.

(And don't forget to come back for Part 3 ~ the dancers!)

Thanks for stopping by!

What's inspring you these days?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

My Weekend ~ Part 1

Last weekend I attended my annual family reunion.

Okay, well, that's what some call it.

Tribal Fest 11. The first belly dance festival devoted to Tribal style belly dance, on it's 11th year this year.

Did you know that I belly danced for 12 years? (you can see me here at last year's festival)

I did.

I'm taking a break right now. After many years of dancing, and several years of teaching and leading a troupe, I decided to take a break. It felt like time. It was a decision that challenged me in many ways. Sometimes though, when you pay attention, you realize that one thing must end, so another can begin.

However! I still love the vibe of tribal style belly dance (there are as many styles of belly dance as there are grains of sand on a beach!) and especially the vibe of Tribal Fest. There is just something about it...

One lovely thing about it is that it takes place in the town of Sebastopol, in northern California. A smallish town, funky, alternative, semi-rural... groovin'!

I may not be dancing, but I think this festival will be a part of my life for as long as it continues. I'll go into that a little bit more in the next post!

Come back again for Part 2 ~ the festival vibe post! And Part 3 ~ the dancers post!

For now, enjoy Sebastopol!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Room to Bloom

I am so excited to share that Tracie Hanson of My Blooming Life is sharing my story today!
She is sharing the creative spaces of creative lovelies!

Today is my turn. Where I create.

My wee little bitty space in my itsy bitsy little house.

Where the magic happens!

Please, go HERE to see her wonderful blog!
(and to see some pics of my creative space)

Friday, May 20, 2011

Breaking Through

I've been noticing just how many limiting thoughts I have been carrying around for, oh, you know, most of my life.

There's a lot! Wow.

Feeling like it's time to let some of them go. Actually, many of them.

Wanna hear a few?

*i shouldn't try to be funny because i will most likely hurt someone when all i'm trying to do is add a little lightness to life

*my introverted withdrawn nature means i will never be understood completely and will keep me from connecting deeply and meaningfully with others

*i must set goals and work hard to get what i want in life, because success only comes to those who have plans (linear, organic, or otherwise, but plans)

*i am emotionally needy and make a bad friend (better to keep to that withdrawn nature)

*there are only two ways to have a creative life: have a job that supports this creativity, or start a creative business that will then end up taking away from my creative time

*what you see is what you get

*teletransport only happens in the movies and books (Shamsi, right?)

*people will never learn that love is the way, that peace is possible

*that i am not enough

Your list may differ.

What limiting thoughts do you lug around with you? Wanna let them go?

Let's do it!

So, letting them go, doing some big releasing over here.

Fire works well for this I find.

What do you want to release? How will you go about it? Please share!


In the meantime, tending to my creative self.

Here's the latest of my 43 paintings for my 43rd year.
(you can see the others over HERE)

I thought it was #12, but lo and behold, it's #13.

Lucky #13.

Synchronicity at work.

Have a lovely day!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Art Journaling

(this was from Wednesday, it disappeared into a Blogger void, but was restored, hurray!)

There is something about Art Journaling... it takes you very deep...

Words sometimes just don't do it justice.

Here is a collage of images from an art journal I started this fabulous weekend, I just finished working on it this week.

To learn how to make your own 16-page journal ~
visit Teesha Moore ~ she is an Art Journaler Divine!

What are you creating this week my dear friends?

I am also working on posting my first ever vlog. Yes, you heard it here first. But I'm having technical difficulties. It's going to have to wait until I have more time to work those out. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Vlogger Virgin No More

Finally, at last, after technical difficulties on my end and technical difficulties on Blogger's end, here it is.

I vlogged.

Yep. I did it.
Can you believe it?

I was nervous, I spoke quite fast, mumbled, and am not loud enough at times. (So turn up the volume if you want hear what I'm saying.)

But you know what? I had fun! Who knew.



I have these lovely women to thank:
Angela, Lis, Mel, and Natasha. You can go over to their blogs to thank (blame) them.

Thank you LOVELY ladies for inspiring me to jump on this band wagon.
It's one groovin' rockin' band and I'm quite happy to be part of it.
Who knew I'd have fun doing this!

Oh, and I also mention the most fabulous teacher ever, Miss Connie H. over at Dirty Footprints Studio. Please go visit her and give her some love.

And Lis? I luv you. Don't un-friend me, k? {grin}

My First Vlog from tracy carlton on Vimeo.

Friday, May 6, 2011

{click on the above for the full story}

I got myself into a little bit of creative overwhelm over here. Lined up some juicy painting goals. Determined to participate in weekly blog sharings and challenges. Daily art journal pages. Weekly art journal prompts. Oh, and creating a new business. You, know the usual things.

Did I mention the other stuff of daily life? Family, work, friends, a house to see to, quiet time, processing old old emotions that seem to be hanging around everywhere these days...


Bonkers. White jackets. Yep. Gotta be careful.


Instead of trying to do it ALL I decided to just stop.

Today, in my effort to do that, I painted my toe nails and looked at lifestyle magazines while sitting in the sun. There was a cool breeze. My son was watering plants, his toys, and his shoes. All was good.

Ah. That's better.

And for the weekend? No goals. No creative plans. No push.

Here's what IS happening:

Listening to some groovin' music by three fabulous school teachers, celebrating our wedding anniversary (i don't know where, my husband planned it~squee!), and doing ABSOLUTELY nothing all day Sunday (my kind of Mother's Day).


White jacket avoided. For now.

How are you slowing down and letting go of getting everything done?

Remember, it's supposed to be fun.

Sunday, May 1, 2011


Happy May Day!

I have been painting my little heart out over here.
Thoroughly and completely in love with painting.
Giving it a big fat hug {{hug}}!

I'm so excited, I started a 3-parter! One painting spread out over 3 canvas boards. I feel so grown up.

This one was inspired by a spectacular little jewel of a bird, Hummingbird.

Don't they just make you smile?
All those brilliant colors, their amazing flying show of tricks, that little merry hum of their wings...

I knew already that they represent joy, but also learned recently that they are powerful medicine (in the indigenous sense of medicine) and represent a new era of peace, harmony, and joy.

So this painting is (these paintings are?) dedicated to Hummingbird.
And to peace, harmony and joy ~ within and without.

Here, in reverse order, are paintings number 11, 10 and 9 (and they all add up to one very happy Joyful experience).

Ta da!