A shift between deep sadness of leaving and an overexcited joy of returning home. Some nausea.
I had a very unexpected difficulity/challenge while visiting Montenegro. The first time when I was at a place that was unusual, interesting or beautiful for me I recoiled.
I was thinking: how can I take in all I see, hear and feel at this place? What is the essence of this place, why it is beautiful, how is it beautiful, what does it mean to me, how does it make me feel?
My best answer for this right now is time. When I’m at a beautiful natural place for example for just ten minutes somehow I feel so distant from that place, it’s like I’m looking at a photo or watching a documentary. I don’t feel anything. But when I spend more time, couple of hours or more if I have the opportunity I’m slowly starting to connect with the place. The sounds are slowly starting to reach me. I feel, see and sense everything that’s around me. And I become a part of it.
When I visited Kotor I had some thoughts about turism and traveling. My hosts encouraged me that I must go and see Kotor, it’s an amazing place in Montenegro.
I wasn’t really excited for turisty places, but the sea and the architecture of the old town convinced me.
When I was there walking around I felt that this is a truly beautiful and interesting place to see. But at the same time I felt repulsed and angry about how much turism change the atmosphere of the place.
As time passed I thought more about this topic and two opposite opinions started to form inside me. One was that turism shouldn’t even exist and we should learn to travel and visit places in a way that places like Kotor wouldn’t need to change at all for our comfort. Or, my other thought was that this is just how this place is and turisty restaurants and caffes, people from all around the world passing by, taking photographs are a part of it. And I should appreciate the place how it is right now.
Still thinking about it.
What I really loved so far: my independence, my feeling of freedom, constant new and unusual stimuli: colors, textures, objects, architecture, nature, human faces, animals, city spaces, the feeling of being on the go, listening to people, seeing people’s home and everyday lives, music, food
What made me uncomfortable so far: when I feel like I loose control of the situation I’m in, experiencing too much of the place’s culture in a way that it effects me so much that I’m starting to forget my own thoughts and views about life, ocasional feeling of being lost or pointless
I had a thought lately when I was walking around in the city with someone I got to know not so long ago whom I think we could became good friends with.
It was a rather melancolic feeling about how he will never know me, he would only know his perception of the version of myself when I’m around him.
And this is sad in a way because this means that noone really knows me. But at the same time thinking about all my versions created by the presence and perception of all the people who are close to me makes me feel joyful. I think it’s fascinating, without them these versions which are very much part of me wouldn’t exist at all.
Something came into my mind since I wrote my last post about trying to understand beauty. If beauty is the number of good choices made in order to create an object, why are randomly, stochasticly created things beautiful? For example paint randomly poured to a canvas or treeleaves fallen to the ground in a random order?
Is this stohastic process actually made out of many unintentional choices determined by the laws of physics? Are these radomly created objects the result of many choices the same way as an intentionally designed object is, only difference is that not we are who are making them.
As a side effect of being an artist and a designer I’m constantly looking at my surroundings, making observations.
Sometimes I spot objects, buildings, clothes or natural elements that are mesmerizing, I enjoy looking at them trying to understand their beauty. And other times when I’m in an enviroment that is poorly designed I feel so uncomfortable I just want to leave.
This is making me think: what makes something beautiful and what makes something ugly? Of all physical objects why do we find certain combination of colors, materials and textures appealing and others repulsive?
Right now I think beauty is the number of good choices that has been made in order to create an object. The amount of time, work and thinking done while designing.
This is why nature is beautiful, because it is created by many good choices during evolution.
The other aspect that makes something either beautiful or ugly to me is how much truth is captured in that object. Is it telling something honestly about ourselves, our feelings and the world we live in?
I was thinking about life choices, how do they effect our everyday lives and after experiencing these effects how do we develop feelings about them.
What is surprisinig and interesting to me when I look back to the choices I made and the experiences I had in these last 8 months is that if I think about circumstances and settings that I would find ideal it’s definitely not what the circumstances are in my life right now.
For example I would prefer to have a nicer looking, well furnished apartment and I would prefer to spend more time with other people working together.
But if we look at deeper levels, not circumstances this is the best possible thing I can do, this is what makes me able to fulfill my deepest needs and wishes: to be free, to express myself and to be truly connected to other people.
And even though on the surface might not everything work the best the core of my decisions and actions I’m really satisfied with. And I think if I continue to choose life choices that are based on these very deep basic wishes my circumstances will get better eventually. And if not, it’s still better this way.
This is how I found my way to love my body, I hope it can help to those who are also on their journey finding beauty in themselves.
There were a lot of things that were needed to make me able to feel really good in my body. First, I think I needed to reach a certain age, self-acceptance takes time.
I think for me it was also important to experience a healthy, positive relationship with someone. Experiencing what it feels like to love someone else’s body and someone else loving your body set me up on the journey of accepting myself.
The biggest change happened in the last few years when I started to live on my own and spend time by myself. For the first time in my life I was on my own, I wasn’t somebody’s daughter, sister, friend or girlfriend. It was just me. And for the first time in my life I saw myself as I am and not as a comparison to something or someone.
I saw what actually was there, a body with joyful eyes, full lips, yes, gigantic feet, a weirdly nice-looking nose, natural, wavy smooth hair, long arms and legs, curvy hips and belly, uneven ears, and so many other things. Just a body where it feels good to be in and experiencing life is fun. It’s beautiful because it is a living thing just like any other living thing, not because it looks or doesn’t look a certain way. It is beautiful and amazing because it makes me able to draw and sing and dance and listen to music and hug my friends and do everything I like to do.
This scene sticked with me from the movie Eames, the architect and the painter, where she talkes about life at the Eames Office.
I think that in our modern lives we want to separate everything, our work, our home and family life, entertainment, social life. And sometimes I feel that these things are not only separated from each other but they are also so far from our true selves, especially work.
I want a type of life like Charles and Ray Eames had, I want my work, home, friends, family and everything I do to jumble up into one big random fulfilling mess.