Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Today's the Day - Launch!

You are officially invited to the launch of the new online home of Jamie Ridler Studios.

I hope you'll come over and play!

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Full Moon Dreamboard: The Full Buck Moon

It's the full buck moon and we have fully arrived in summer. Now is the time to get into action, to sense your own power, to step up and in to all that you want to create this month. What will it be?

As you likely know, what I am creating is a brand new website, and the launch is tomorrow! I'm treating it like a big opening night party and I do hope you'll come and celebrate this new venture with me, this new and beautiful home for Wishcasting and for our Full Moon Dreamboards.

As a part of the celebration, I'll be having giveaways and also offering a 1-day only special on Your Creative Spark. I'll post the address on Wednesday, and if you're on my newsletter list, you'll receive an email invitation with all of the details.

May this be a powerful month for us all! May all of your dreams come true.

Monday, July 06, 2009

My Full Buck Moon Dreams

This is such a transformational time in my life. During periods like this, I find dreamboards so helpful. On those days where things are feeling a bit rough, slow or stressful, I look at my board and remember what is actually important to me. And on the days when things are happening, flowing and going, I look at the board and drink it up like nectar!

I'm in the midst of:
  • Creating and launching a new website, a beautiful, creative welcoming studio where dreams get supported with loving care
  • Revamping my entire wardrobe with the help of the wonderful Safina Ruda of Faith Boutique. I told Safina I'm looking forward to feeling personally expressed and professionally empowered.
  • Redoing my entire studio. After the wall came down during our repairs, this space was a blank slate. Now it's painted beautiful purply blues and my desk and computer are in place. But everything else? Still in disarray.
But in the midst of this what I'm dreaming about is where this transition is taking me. And looking at my board, I trust it's going to be taking me some truly amazing places!

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Project 365 ~ Week 26

I have been having lots of fuzzy pictures lately, dang! I pulled out this box to get working on "Sew this Page in Wreck this Journal.

A family of raccoons has taken refuge in our neighbour's shed. It's amazing to watch them breaking in and sneaking out right in the middle of the day!

My studio is painted and things are getting moved back in.

the new home of my desk.

I've never seen a purple pepper before. Justin brought one home for us to try. It tasted like a pepper with a bit of a tougher skin.

The market is open and Justin brought me delphiniums this week. Isn't the colour amazing! They're especially a treat because my delphiniums didn't come up at all this year.

And the perfect end to a lovely week, hanging out with Shannon for dinner. That glow is the her camera taking the same picture! I think I"m looking at her camera and she's looking at mine, lol!

Project 365 is my attempt to capture a year in my life through a photograph a day. On Saturday's I'll post the week's pics. At the end of the year, I'll create a video of all these precious moments. Feel free to participate at any time. Yours can be Project 347 or Project 292. It's up to you. See the results of my Project 365 ~ 2008 here.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Wishcasting Wednesday ~ July 1, 2009

What do you wish to nurture?

Hello, beautiful wish makers and dream tenders. I have to tell you how much this loving, supportive community that's growing with Wishcasting means to me. Every week I am touched, inspired and joyful as I read your wishes and encouraging words. That's one of the reasons why I'm so excited to share with you that as of next week, Wishcasting will find a new home.

Many of you know that I'm currently nurturing a new website/blog. Today I realized it would be so special for me to launch it on a Wishcasting Wednesday. Then I'd just know it was going to be surrounded by and filled with magic and love. So here it is, I'm writing this publicly for the first time, next Wednesday, I'll be launching my new site. Stop by here for the address and an invitation to my online launch party. I'll look forward to seeing you there.

And in the meantime, as always, you can be a maker of magic and a tender of wishes. It’s easy. Answer the wish prompt above on your blog and then add a direct link to your post in the box below. Support wishes by visiting other participants, leaving a comment saying “As (insert name) wishes for her/himself, so I wish for her/him also.” It’s that simple. There is great power in wishing together.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Don't be Afraid to Have Style

Have you ever received negative messages about the things that you love? In my life there have been two things that I've received some real negative messages about: style and performance. I'll talk about performance another day but with my wardrobe consultation coming up Thursday, my mind's on style.

Ever since I was a little girl, I loved clothes. I remember my red shirt with the frills down the front, my pink blouse with the ballooning sleeves, my crazy yellow oxfords, my red skater dress with the twirling skirt - all of these I wore in public school. I remember spending hours pouring over pattern books my mom brought home, choosing from each page which sleeve I liked best, which collar, which length, expressing my preferences and honing my taste. Clothing was a daily act of creative self-expression.

I don't just remember how my clothes looked. I remember how I felt in them - both how outfits amped up a particular aspect of my personality and also how they sensually felt against my skin. The mood of a flouncy skirt and sandals was so different from a pencil skirt and heels - and I loved them both. Over time, my changing wardrobe expressed different periods of my life. They represented me as a dancer, as a student, as an artistic director, as a club chick.

It came as a shock to me in grade 7 when I discovered that clothes could also define your status, and that people could use clothes to pigeonhole you. That was antithetical to my take on fashion but it was certainly a popular view. Over time, it also became clear that in many people's view, being concerned with fashion meant that you were materialistic, superficial and quite likely, a snob. And if that wasn't bad enough, we all know the impact that a limited view of beauty has had on the self-esteem and confidence of countless women and girls!

How could I in good conscious love fashion?

I think the answer comes in taking a stand for love. It's crucial to our expression of ourselves that we be allowed to love what we love. Fashion can be a way of expressing our love for colour, for texture, for shape. With fashion we can celebrate our uniqueness, our sexiness, our sensibilities, our sense of humour. Where fashion turns against us is when we let someone else dictate what is loveable and what is not, the latter often being our poor, tender bodies.

So many wonderful things in this world can turn into cages when they're accompanied by 'shoulds.' Fashion, work and life can all become oppressive when we feel we must follow rules that someone else prescribes. And fashion, work and life can be fulfilling and expressive when we define for ourself what is beautiful, what expresses our sensibilities and our spirit.

So, don't be afraid to have style...

Your style.

By the way, the site I used to come up with my wardrobe inspiration board is Polyvore and it could be a fun way to create a dreamboard. Full Moon Dreamboards are coming up on July 7th. If you're in Toronto, I'm hosting a live Dreamboard Circle on Sunday, July 5th. You can find out more here. You can email me at jamie(at)openthedoor(dot)ca for details or to RSVP.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Guest Post: Heather Plett ~ Dreamboarding at Work

Heather Plett likes to play with words, paint, and photos over at her blog ( In her day job, she leads a national team of fundraisers and public relations professionals, some of whom like to get down on the floor with scissors and glue and others who do not. She has used dreamboarding in a variety of leadership roles to help teams explore possibilities and dreams.

“Okay, now push away from the table, take your scissors and glue and get down on the floor.”

I don’t think they’d ever heard those words before at a business meeting. Some of them looked at me reluctantly (“you want me to do WHAT?), and others jumped up eagerly (“you mean I get to PLAY?). Once I’d convinced even the resisters to get down on the floor, I passed around large sheets of construction paper and stacks of old magazines.

This was an annual planning meeting for my team. Instead of facilitating a traditional strategic planning exercise, where-in we spend tedious hours coming up with carefully worded (and dreadfully boring and uninspiring) goals, objectives, and action plans, I decided to try something a little different. “Flip through the magazines,” I said. “There are no rules for this exercise. Just start cutting out pictures and words that inspire you. Try to imagine the possibilities for our team for the coming year. What do you dream of? What do you hope for? What things get you passionate? In the end, put together a picture of where you feel our team (and you as a contributor to this team) should be a year from now.”

After about an hour and a half of cutting, pasting, and creating, the group shared what they’d created. Some had used mostly words, others had only pictures. Some had very organized categorized boards, others had random scattered images. One of the artists in our group had embellished hers with coloured pens. Each board was unique and each said something important about where our team was going. The common themes we found running through most of the dreamboards became the basis for our annual plan for the coming year. The ideas that were not common between boards were tested with other team members before being added to the whole.

Dreamboarding at work. Have you ever tired it? Why not consider it next time your team needs to gather for strategic planning/visioning/etc.?

Here are a few of the things I’ve learned after doing this a number of times with different teams:
  1. When individuals have completed their dreamboards, you may want to combine them all into a large collage. Another option would be to work on one common dreamboard from the start, where everyone contributes to a large board with their own ideas. If you do a common board, make sure everyone feels like an equal and honoured participant.
  2. Draw out some of the surprising, unusual, or risky pieces you see in the boards that some people might be reluctant to share. Sometimes the best ideas are the ones that are the most hidden. Create a space where team-members are safe to be vulnerable.
  3. People will respond very differently to this exercise. Some will jump in eagerly, and some will offer a great deal of resistance. If you anticipate that more than half of your team will be resisters and you’ll have a hard time getting anything meaningful out of it, you may want to consider small steps to work up to this. For example, the first time you step away from more traditional strategic planning exercises, you may want to start with word play - write down all the words that come to your mind when you think of where your team should be next year. (It’s a little less threatening than getting down on the floor.)
  4. Watch for negative energy and try to stem the tide. A few resisters can ruin it for the more eager participants. Find a way to respect their fear or blockage and then help them work past it toward a place of possibilities.
  5. When it comes time to explain what they have created, some people may need some prompting to get to the heart of what they’re dreaming about. Some of the greatest “a-ha” moments happen after a person has put the pieces together and sees the final product.
  6. Consider posting the dreamboards in a shared space in your work place (lunch room, hallway, etc.) to remind people of their visions and possibilities. (Be sure you clear this with the team first, in case they’re embarrassed about having other people outside of the team see their creations.)
In my experience, sometimes the greatest epiphanies can come when a team is getting lost in creative play. I’ve seen some wonderful ideas that have emerged from dreamboarding that I suspect never would have emerged if we’d taken the more traditional strategic planning route. It may not be for everyone (would a team of auditors or accountants get into this? Hmmm…), but if you have a creative group that needs an extra little boost, it’s worth a try.