Working Table (laura): Awakening to Winter’s Rhythm

Dear Tina,

Everything is covered in sparkly white up here. We had a big snowstorm which made everything magical. I am learning to welcome winter’s rhythm although I would take a beach day over the snow anytime. Things slow down around here and people don’t seem to go out as much. Do you remember those days? It is so much work to get all bundled up and then face a frozen car. I just want to snuggle in with Brett & the kitties by the fire. Winter does have some perks though. I have been able to go out snowshoeing which has felt great! I miss being in nature. The smell of the sea air and the peeps of sunshine on my face are savored, especially against the harsh wind.


Gracie Mae, getting all cozy with me.

Bluff Point.snow.WM.

This is a view of your Vision from the other direction.

Frozen Bluff.WEB

Crazy how the water froze, isn’t it?

snow day graphic.WEB

I was just reading Louie Schwartzberg’s blog post about Nature Deficit Disorder (NDD) first introduced by Richard Louv. Have you ever heard of this? It is just like it sounds and believed to be related to the trends we are seeing in attention deficit disorders, in the rise in obesity and depression. Louv believes,

“This lack of nature in our lives is a detriment to our mental,

physical, and spiritual well-being.”

Do you believe this to be true? I believe this for myself. Being in nature calms my mind, makes me feel more energetic and connects me spiritually. I see things I hadn’t before, ideas come more fluidly and I feel connected to something greater than myself. I agree with Louie Schwartzberg’s belief that nature is the answer to improving our overall health and well-being.

Through his amazingly beautiful films he is trying to awaken a genuine love of the beauty of nature. In an effort to inspire people to stand up against NDD, Moving Art (his website) is announcing its first social media campaign to bring awareness to Nature Deficit Disorder called #BeatNDD. He is encouraging everyone to go out, observe nature and photograph the beauty they see and then share it on their social media sites using the #BeatNDD. I think you and I do this so often as evidence of our last Vision.

“The future will belong to the nature-smart—those individuals, families, businesses, and political leaders who develop a deeper understanding of the transformative power of the

natural world and who balance the virtual with the real.

The more high-tech we become, the more nature we need.”

snow quote.WEB.These snow drifts were beautiful. Like little sculptures.

coffee mug.WEB.

Winter is good for hibernation and lately I find myself in a very contemplative mode, researching, experimenting and thinking about my work. I enjoyed your last letter about mind mapping. It was really great to see your creative process and see all the different examples of mind mapping. I have started jotting down words in my sketch journal that I might like to try with this process.


These are some of the sketches from the poppy series I have been working on.


I started with the background I shared with you in a previous letter and then built up layers of paint from there. Often when I am working words or ideas will come to me and I will write them on the work. Sometimes they stay but often they aren painted over and hidden. So much of my work is about trusting my intuition and honing the skill of mindfulness along with the discipline of showing up.

poppy 4

poppy 3.WM.
Laura Gaffke, “Awakening” acrylic, 6 x 6 inches

As you can see I ended up painting over the words and changing the colors a bit. I have two more paintings to share with you but this letter is getting long. Hope you are enjoying the sunshine down south. I am so jealous but will be flying to “St. Somewhere” soon!



p.s. Do you remember the amazingly gorgeous video I shared of Louise Schwartzberg’s for Vision 117. I just revisited it and still am in awe of his “Moving Art”. He is so unbelievably inspiring.

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