Video feedback is becoming a popular topic on YouTube. Here’s a video that gives some explanation of how the “living mandalas” are created. It’s a the science of light, moving geometry, and vibrant patterns of color all put to a good beat. And just fun.
The life work of artist Lahrinda Eileen is well summed up in her blog tagline “The Music of Spirit Sings in Beauty, Color, Symbols, Geometry and Light.” It is clear that her studies in science, her fascination with energetic healing, and artistic explorations come together in amazing ways. She calls what she produces Symbalas.
Currently living in SeaTac, Washington, Lahrinda actually began her studies in science, and only came into producing her mandala art in mid-life. She began creating her Symbalas on the computer after what she calls an epiphany in 1993, which lead her down the path of translating life energies into circular symbolic art.
The word “symbala” – a combination of the words symbol and mandala — brings together the essence of what she creates. In her own words a Symbala is “a mandala or magic form representing wholeness or unity. Each one is created from an intuitive integration of Symbols, Golden Proportion Geometry, Numbers and Color inspired by the energies of an individual, an event, a concept or an attuning intention.”
Lahrinda’s work can have many different purposes: as commissioned works for individual and personal use, or for anyone as “focusing tools for therapy, contemplation and beautification.” They are all about shifting perception, what she says is the catalyst behind belief and therefore what we create in our life.
She has a series of Life Symbalas created specifically for Divination, inspired by Cards of Your Destiny: What Your Birthday Reveals About You & Your Past, Present & Future by Robert Camp. She has been inspired by many sources, another notable one being the work of Dr. Masuru Emoto, the well known author of The Hidden Messages in Water.
You know me, I love to search the blog sphere and find more artists using mandalas as a medium to express themselves. Here are some more favorites. Enjoy!
Dave Hunter is quickly working his way up the ranks of the psychedelic poster scene on the west coast. His new art print, “Sacred Mandala One”, is a 22″ x 28″ ten color screenprint, has an edition of 36, and is $80. …
This week we were asked to design something other than a card, with one of the Mandala digi stamps. I was assigned to my favorite Mandala digi that Elizabeth has in her store, it is called Eternal Flight. I swear that she must have ESP …
The Daily Mandala: December 17, 2009. Waking up, looking up, I see the light, love, joy breaking through. The message is clear. It’s a gift from the heart. Open it. The Daily Mandala: December 17, 2009. Posted by SusanGail at 9:12 PM …
Mandala’s in Space. December 18, 2009 in Carol Hayward. Carol Hayward. Mandala’s in Space. Milky pens on black card. Possibly related posts: (automatically generated). Earthweek Mandala at Brown School · A Mandala for Monday …
During the process of creating this mandala, I started to think about my mother. She was a woman who loved all things elegant, and I learned a lot about that quality from her. It shows up all over the place in my art, in my choices of …
After a simple search for [Mandala] on my external hard drive I was surprised to see how many of these things I’ve painted over the past ten years. More than 60 of them in various sizes, vocabularies, and techniques. …
I did it, I did it! Finally I finished my first downloadable mandala coloring book. It’s been in production for a long time (mostly due to life distractions and my perennial lack of focus). But it’s here! I proudly present:
30 Unique downloadable mandala designs for relaxation.
You can find out more and order it here.
Sample images from the 30 unique mandalas included in this book:
Already convinced? Go ahead, buy it here!
Keep your eyes peeled, there’s more in production. Meanwhile make sure you have signed up to get a password to enter the free downloads section.
As I surf the web, watch the news and experiment with my own mandala making, I am amazed at the amazing variety of ways and mediums through which people make mandalas. Here is just a sample of some artists who use different materials for creating them.
Previously I featured Virginia Fleck, who makes large mandalas out of recycled plastic bags. Check out that post here.
This guy, artist Rob Pettit made mandalas from old cell phones– this one consists of 5,000 cellphones destined for the landfill.
I stumbled on the information about him originally on an interesting blog called Digital Dieties. It appears to be a blog about mandalas made by all sorts of artists all over the world wo make them out of all kinds of funky materials – scissors, food, wire, you name it. There are many images there, be sure to check it out.
Christine Claringbold makes eye-popping mandalas from recycled records, and shapes them into bowls, clocks and many other items. I guess there is a reason her blog is called Eye Pop Art, go take a look.
Continually surfing the web, I know I will come up with many more. Do you know any artists who make mandalas in interesting ways, or with unusual materials? Let me know, I would love to feature them on a future post.
Even if coloring between the lines is as creative as you want to get in mandala making, gazing on the gorgeous creations of the varied mandala artists out there is always inspirational. And you never know, the crafter in you may just find another way to express your mandala-loving heart!
Once in awhile I come across an artist that I simply must rave about. It goes beyond someone’s artwork inspiring me, beyond appreciation for talent, and into the realm of sensing the deep and profound spiritual “ring” that I hear when viewing their work.
I speak now of David Wietzman, the creative designer behind KA Gold Jewelry. My son and I spent an hour last night drooling over the bountiful photographs of his gold and silver designs (with my son constantly saying over each item, “I want that, can I have that?” — and he’s 10). What is so impressive to me, beyond the sheer beauty of the designs and obvious quality of construction, is the depth of knowledge that has been cultivated by the artist over the years. Each design is the embodiment, in precious metal, of sacred symbols from spiritual tradition. Having been a long time student of multiple spiritual traditions, symbolism and Phoenician-based scripts (Hebrew, Arabic, Greek, etc), I can truly say he has done his homework. And beyond that he has blessed each piece with his rich energy and created valuable works of art.
A statement from his website: “[David has] devoted his life to seeking the greater truths from the world’s religions and cultures by studying the fields of Kabbalah, Judaism, Buddhism, eastern spirituality and ancient wisdom…. He understands that sacred geometry and spiritual symbols from around the world tie everything in life together. …..When David achieves a new understanding of a symbol, he shares it with the world through his jewels to empower the wearer and share his knowledge and greater truths.”
I share with you here some of my (and my son’s) favorite pieces, but you really must go look for yourself. Even if you aren’t in the market for jewelry, go look for your own inspiration, and be fed by his special energy. It is artists like David Weitzman who can help empower us all.
“David’s work transcends cultural, religious, and even language barriers……..David’s jewels aim to unite people in a world that often seeks to divide them. People everywhere share values such as health, love, and a connection with something greater than themselves. David’s designs are meant to inspire the wearers to bring that fulfillment to their lives.”
Layering your colors is another way to express your artistic eye when coloring a mandala.
Layer your colors, one on top of another, to attain depth and dimension. Layering is merely adding one color on top of another color over and over again. Use as many colors as you wish.
Start out by stroking your first color lightly. Heavy pressure at the beginning builds a waxy surface that will resist further applications. Layering is a simple matter of lightly applying one color after another, and takes some patience. Try cross hatching, which is stroking your color first in one direction and then going back over the same area stroking the opposite direction. The key really is to build up the colors slowly to get the blend you prefer.
You will be able to finally blend colors by using a lighter color to press down heavily on top of your layered colors,. You can also purchase special colorless blending pencils, which help to bring out the vibrancy and depth of colors. Practice your blending on a separate piece of paper if you are unsure of your outcome.
Experiment and most importantly, have fun! Also remember, if the tools you’re using are mediocre the results will be less satisfying. I recommend watercolor pencils for their bright colors and greater versatility. Try
Prismacolor Colored Pencils available from Dick Blick.
I recently found a great article at Green Muze about an artist who creates mandalas from plastic bags.
Born in New York City in 1960, Virginia Fleck began making artwork as a child. She studied at Portland School of Art and The School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. The artist now lives and works in Austin, Texas.
Her work has been exhibited at Art Forum Berlin, Pulse Miami, Pulse New York, and Arte Fiera in Bologna, Italy. Fleck receives commissions for both temporary and permanent public art projects throughout the United States, and her work appears in many public and private collections.
Intricately crafted, large scale works reminiscent of quilt making, each mandala is construct with discarded plastic bags that have been carefully cut and taped piece by piece into the design . “The cutting can get very sophisticated. I use many quilt making tools such as rotary cutters, shaped cutting templates, and circle cutters. I also use a beam compass for drawing large circles, various Exacto knives and a reducing glass (the opposite of a magnifying glass) for viewing and assessing the large highly patterned mandalas while they are in progress.” says Fleck.
Fleck’s mandalas are as layered with meaning as they are with color and material. The resulting works, each crafted from thousands of used plastic bags featuring familiar logos and slogans, can be both funny and unsettling. In contrast to the traditional Tibetan sand mandala’s impermanence, Fleck’s mandalas are created from non-biodegradable plastic shopping bags. Her work makes an interesting commentary on ecological awareness at the same time it divulges the concealed beauty of the materials we nonchalantly dispose of everyday.
When asked how long it takes to create one of her mandalas, Fleck says, “It could take as little as 2 weeks but sometimes it takes 2 months depending on the complexity. I usually have 3 or 4 mandalas under construction at once. This way when I get to a stopping point with one piece I can just move on to another. I like to keep working.”
Read the full article at: Green Muze
Artists website: Virginia Fleck
The computer screen is something my eyeballs land on a great deal, and if you’re like me, having the right images there makes for a much more pleasant daily experience. Bring the beauty of mandalas to your computer screen — often a great place for placing meditative and soothing images. Here are a couple of good ones I’ve found.
Kaleid-O-Space™ is a mesmerizing screen saver that brings you all the fascination and beauty of a real kaleidoscope, right on your PC! Some of it’s features are:
- 18 Colorful Animated Kaleidoscopes
- Animated Transition Effects
- Simulates Real 2 and 3 Mirror Kaleidoscopes
- Multiple Animated Pattern Layers
- Interactive Capabilities
- Capture Wallpapers from Any Visual Scene
- Store up to 19 Wallpapers at a Time
- Cycle Wallpapers Manually or Automatically
- Metaphysically Oriented Visual Enhancements
- Customizable Setup Options
- Full Help Documentation and a Printable Manual
- FREE Download and Trial, $14.95 to purchase the full version.
KrazyDad has multiple screensavers, and he says, “Unlike many crude screensavers which are inaccurately described as “kaleidoscopic,” my screensavers are true kaleidoscope simulators: They use a two mirror “mandala” reflection system, much like the best fine-art kaleidoscopes, and they are entrancing and mesmerizing!” He has developed software called Metascope, but I haven’t been able to try it as it is “broken” at the moment. But there are some freebies avaliable on his site.
There are many others to be found if you simply Google “mandala screensaver”, but beware the computer parameters and of course spy/malware.
Here are some of my favorite times to color mandalas:
1. When my husband and I are talking about our finances. This one I figured out by accident. Usually these sorts of conversations drive me crazy, particularly if we don’t see eye to eye. But if I am coloring while we talk, I find it much easier to listen and relax. Therefore, it’s also much easier to find the right words to express my own opinions.
2. While watching TV with my son. Now those who use mandalas for meditative purposes may shudder at this one, but I find it works for me. His selection of TV shows is not always that interesting for me, but that’s not my point in being there. I want to have the opportunity to interact with him and be aware of what’s going into that brain of his. Having a mandala to color gives me something to do that I enjoy, and yet I can still be available for those moments of laughter at silly characters and conversation over concepts he doesn’t understand. And I can remind him that with TIVO, he can fast forward through the commercials.
3. When I’m having business conversations on the phone. This was another accidental discovery. Not only did I find that it helped me relax (I’m not big on these kinds of phone calls, particularly with people I don’t know very well) but I was better able to focus. And later, when I looked at the design I had been coloring, I found I remembered more details in the conversation.
How do you use mandalas to relax?