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Inspire with Christy Birmingham

This week we are going to talk about Christy Birmingham. She is a writer, poet and feminist. Her writing is inspiring and motivates every woman who is going thru difficult moments. I personally love her work, Christy explains how art/poetry helped her to deal with personal issues, depression, and abuse. She is the perfect example what we have been trying to translate on our project.

Christy

Read her complete interview below.

When did you discover your passion for writing?

As an elementary school student, I realized my love of poetry and short stories. It was after becoming a voracious reader. I recall my English teacher asking us to pen a story based on a prompt and my story getting a good mark from the teacher. I was very proud!

Is poetry your favorite writing style?

Yes. Poems mean a lot to me as this was my first writing style published (back in elementary school – the poem was on the topic of recycling). I like the succinct nature of poetry. The format suits how my thoughts often emerge and I find that my expressions go well with a poetic format.

Do you think poetry is a type of therapy?

It absolutely can be! Art therapy has proven benefits and writing is a form of it. Poems, in particular, helped me to deal with personal issues, including depression and abuse. It was through my first poetry book Pathways to Illumination that I truly came back to being “me.”

Tell me about your writing motivation.

I am primarily motivated to write to help women struggling with their mental health or with unhealthy relationships. I speak from experience and want to help others. I believe that my purpose is to provide a hand to those who need help in these areas. By growing my blogging and book platforms, I can hopefully reach more women.

Who is your favorite author?

Margaret Atwood! I was drawn to her when I realized how distinct a writing style she has. I marveled in her book Surfacing at how she crafted a female character that was both unique and familiar at the same time. She has a beautiful way of phrasing sentences.

Tell me about your favorite poem.

I cannot choose a favorite poem. There are so many great choices. Some of the poets I admire most are Maya Angelou, Robert Frost, and Sylvester L. Anderson.

 

What are your career aspirations?

I think that keeping inspired in a career can wane, no matter who you are. If I find this happening, I take a break from my desk and walk out in nature (preferably by the water). This will calm me and help me refocus my train of thought. It helps to write down the why behind why you do what you do as a career and look at this piece of paper when you find yourself feeling uninspired as a way to re-ignite the spark in you!

Tell me about your coming book.

I am working on a collection of short stories. It will be my third book and the first one that is fiction. I am not releasing too much about this upcoming book… yet.

 


Women’s rights

What do you think needs to be done to reduce the violence against women? 

I think that we need to stop putting the onus on women to prevent violence. I suggest instead that we educate men about respecting women and what a healthy relationship looks like. Instead of looking at sexual assaults as “what did she do to be treated that way?” let’s instead say “why did he do that?” But, better yet, let’s address the issue before it even happens.

Do you think that women can overcome traumas through writing?

I think writing is a therapeutic tool, absolutely. Journaling is just one example. My therapist had recommended it to me, and I found it helpful for making sense of a full mind. Reading the words on paper was scary at first, but it does force you to come to terms with the past and only by doing so can you move ahead.

How can writing be a powerful tool to speak out about women’s rights?

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For me, writing provides a way to connect with women whom I might not otherwise ever meet in person. Blog posts, articles, and books are all powerful ways of educating women and men about gender equality. My last book Versions of the Self explores the different types of relationships and explains how we each affect one another. The great thing about the written word is that it can be read re-read and savored whenever a person wants.

If you could advise a young girl who lives in a vulnerable territory, what would it be?

It would depend on the exact situation. If she is scared, I would encourage her to reach out to someone she trusts and express what is behind her fear. This person can then take the steps necessary to get this child to a safe place. Also, I would tell her to trust her instincts. If something feels off, it likely is!

Feel free to leave any message to our readers. 

Feminism is not an ugly word! Often a person raises an eyebrow at me when I explain that some of the writing I do concerns the subject of feminism. It is about protecting female rights around the globe, and we deserve to fight back at the attacks being made on it. Let’s stand strong and unite, men and women, to make the world a more peaceful and fair place to live.

Bio:

Find Christy Birmingham blogging about ways to enhance your life and live fully at When Women Inspire. Also, you can find her on TwitterPinterest, and Google+.

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Interview with Gricey RT – Geometry Art Portrait

by Vanessa Daniela

Empowering girls is the key to a prosperous society.

We are pleased to support Gricey RT. An amazing young artist who is well known for her geometry portraits. Gricey is launching her new portraits on our website in October.

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Read the exclusive interview with this talented artist.

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BIO

Born and raised in Northern Mexico, the artist behind this trend, Gricey RT, is only 15 years old. She is currently studying his first years of high school, but she already has a promising career in the field of Art & Mathematics.

French, English and Spanish speaker — she has a wide perspective of different cultures from which she finds inspiration and applies it to her art.

Her goal is to inspire this generation with art as her tool–therefore, the birth of this website, just to share her pieces with the world and to raise funds in order to keep developing her art techniques.


Interview

When did you discover your passion for the arts?

I have always tried to express myself through any kind of visual art, as far as memory holds. About three years ago, when my former math teacher gave us an assignment about tessellations—handmade drawings made of a pattern of geometric figures—I realized I could combine my art with basic geometry. However, unlike Leonhard Euler’s great masterpieces, I decided to put my own twist to it—implementing faces. That is because when I was nine years old I began developing a passion for the human face’s proportions and little characteristic that can make it different from everyone else.

Do you think art is a therapy?

Absolutely. It helps people going through tough times and traumas, and it is certainly as a mean to express your inner thoughts without the fear of criticism. No matter how you do it, you learn to love it and be proud of it; what really matters, however, is your feelings towards it and the opinion you have about it. It is unique. It is yours.

Tell me about your art motivation

My art motivation is the combination of both my fascination for art and mathematics. My goal is to highlight the distinctive features of the human face, to capture its beauty in a minimalist way. I enjoy drawing a human face with its own characteristics—large eyes, small forehead, big checks, you name it. The trick is using lines only. But in the end, the reaction of the people when I hand them their portrait is the most satisfying part and my biggest motivation.

Who is your favorite artist?

I consider Vincent van Gogh as my lifetime favorite because of his distinctive style and perspective of the world. To illustrate, his paintings clearly show the brush-stroke. Also, the effect of continuous movement in his painting Starry Night. Banksy’s political activism, on the other hand, caught my attention. His intention to transmit his message about politics through “illegal” means. He agreed to the possibility of going to jail, not showing his face, and doing it at night. Nowadays you have to be more spontaneous and creative in the way you share your art, like the previous example.

Tell me about your favorite art piece. 

My favorite art piece is The Creation of Adam and The David by Michelangelo because I like the way he captured the essence of the human body. Also, the Sunflowers of Van Gogh. A personal reason, my favorite color is yellow.

What are your career aspirations?

I have always clear that engineering is my area of vocation, in specific the area of cybernetics and electronics. Designing and developing prostheses to help amputees is one of my goals. Although recently my focus has been on developing my own style in art, I am sure that I will find a way to merge both aspects of design and achieve innovation in my area of study as well as on the artistic side.

Tell me about your coming project.

My upcoming project is a collection of the outstanding women throughout time. My intention the promotion of the idea that women are dauntless, empowered and capable of anything.

Women’s rights.

What do you think needs to be done to reduce the violence against women? 

I think we should educate our children that women are capable. We should encourage them to participate in social movements and politics. Making society aware women’s mistreatment through the means of art, like poems—like Button Poetry (which I really love)—performance art such as Marina Abramovic and Kara Walker, social movement such as The Art Hoe Collective, photography and visual art; Women support each other and empower one another.

Do you think through art women can overcome traumas?

Through art, we can put our traumas and difficult situations apart. This helps us to observe and analyze with objectiveness. That is because the first step to overcome, is to organize what we feel and what we think, and a way to do it, as I said, is through art.

How art can be a powerful tool to speak out about women’s rights?

I often think how in the past women art wasn’t well treated or even accepted. But since then, we had acquired the courage to express, create and show our art. At this point, we start to make ourselves conscious that we are also human beings and that we deserve the same opportunities as men do. So now I can say that we can inspire new generations of women to create and fight for what we want.

If you could give advice to a young girl, who lives in a vulnerable territory. What would it be?

All problems at a certain point, tend to end. In a good or a bad way, however. But the difficult part is living with them. Art is always a good way to escape because it helps you to focus and express your ideas. A painting, sculpture, a song, it doesn’t matter. And you don’t need expensive equipment to produce it, as I do, you can implement the concept of Minimalism, created by Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus. After all, your only true supply is your imagination and the most important thing, what really matters is your opinion.

Feel free to leave any message to our readers. 

I think that art has to do completely with feelings, it’s expressing yourself in different ways, and by the other hand opening your view of the World, because all of us see different things in a same piece of art. But no matter the place, people, culture, etc. Feelings are the universal language. So in some way art is telling us that we are all equal. As human beings, we have the same opportunities, strengths, weakness, etc. And that these art pieces deserve our attention, our respect, and tolerance.

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One Sky: A collaborative project with almost 90 female* artists and one instruction: look up.

Women Who Draw is an open directory of female* professional illustrators, artists and cartoonists. It was created by two women artists in an effort to increase the visibility of female illustrators, emphasizing female illustrators of color, LBTQ+, and other minority groups of female illustrators.

One of their most recent project is called “One Sky”: a collaborative project with almost 90 artists and one instruction: look up.

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On August 13, 2017, at precisely 12:00 pm Eastern Standard Time, 88 artists all over the world stopped what they were doing, looked up, and drew the sky. What each artist saw was unique to the time, the weather, and the place. The locations ranged from Tel Aviv to Brooklyn, Buenos Aires to rural Georgia. Some saw different hues of blue. Some saw black, pink, or gray. Some saw stars or clouds or fog or rain. Here it was summer. There it was night. In one place a fire left a heavy brown haze. Whatever sky the artist saw, they captured it on paper in their own unique style. They were, at that exact moment, separate skies. But when we view these drawings together, they become one far-stretching, simultaneous world view. They become a portrait of one shared sky.

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This is the beautiful result: https://www.topic.com/one-sky

*Women Who Draw is trans-inclusive and includes women, trans and gender non-conforming illustrators.