Back to the island - reminiscence of childhood

February 28, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

What is your earliest memory?

I can be sure I remember about my childhood memories when I'm four years old. I might have some fragments of recollection when I was younger than that. But four is the time I can pinpoint since my mom gave birth to my sister. We were living in a small town on an island in West Borneo, and there wasn't a hospital nearby. The closest was in the capital city a couples hours away. The only transportation in and out the island was by speedboat. 

When my mom's contraction began, people got busy preparing to bring my mom to the hospital. I remember someone asked me to get a glass of water. To get to the kitchen I have to pass the alley where there are stairs to the attic. That part of the house was always dark, and I would run faster through that section. At the right side before the kitchen we have an open area where my dad kept our pets. To my shock,  I discovered one of our pets was dead. I ran back to my mom's room without the water and reported what had happened. I don't remember how we dealt with the dead pet, but I was upset I can't go with my mom.

I was crying when my mom left me with my grandma. She put me in an "ayunan" some type of baby cradle but made from sarong and attached to the coil hanging from the ceiling that you can manually either bounce or swing gently to put a toddler to sleep. I was crying with a milk bottle in my mouth filled with sugar water, not milk. I don't like milk. My eyes traced on the pale green kilt pattern material on the I still kept crying in an act of protest. I couldn't acccept the reality of being left behind. I was quite stubborn and firm with what I want since a very young age. 

I have so many memories from Batu Ampar, ( Indonesia was still developing country where many things is far behind ),  the first town I spent the first decade of my life. My parents built their own house by the creek, and we were the only house to have electric at that time. We have a big yard surroundings our house, my mom planted many types of tropical fruit trees and vegetables. TV still black and white at that time. Toys are from stuff you can find in the backyard. We made play machine guns cutting from the center stalk of banana leaves that can make popping noise when you run your palm on the pop up cutting.  Milking a rubber tree to make a bouncy ball.  Playing hopscotch in the yard. Picking wild passion fruit and wild gooseberries. I had a big area for me to play with my friends.  I learned by myself how to swim from one day watching a bug that had fallen into the water. It was the most adventurous and memorable place of my childhood. But it was where my nightmare started.

At the night I would often have dreams and I always remembered my dream when I woke up in the morning. There was this particular dream, it was a nightmare. A tall man with hair longer than regular man, but it was not too long just touching his shoulder. He has on a long pitch black medieval cape and carrying a long sword. He was chasing me around, I have this feeling he will try to get me and no good intention was expected. With all my strength I try to run but it seems like my feet are being weighted down.  My hands grasp trunks from the small trees along the road pushing as hard as possible to gain speed. He was closing behind me...feeling helpless I couldn't run fast. At one point I'm running toward our backyard but it's a cul-de-sac. Right the under our big jackfruit tree, he held his sword high. I know I'm in trouble but I was cornered with no way out. His sword swings down toward the top of my head. I'm being split in two... At the same time the sword hit my head I was thinking is this what dead feels like...very bizarre and strange I don't feel the pain... just don't believe this is it. Very weird feeling that hard to describe and still unbelievable that this is the end of me. Maybe shock woke me up...I remember I was very relieved that it was just a dream. Since then many dreams come to me at night where I'm chased by a bad guy but no particular face or clothing that I remember like before more vividly. far I can say these are the best memories of my childhood about this place. 

One day I was so sad that we had to move to a bigger town for the better living. I was leaving behind all my friends and the place I loved so dearly. My dad gave the house to the local preacher to live in. I never see my friends since then but never forgot about them.
I often reminiscence about visiting again, but did not make the trip until last year. In 2016 we managed to travel back to this island with my husband. My big brother came along with his wife. Surprisingly we met some friends that still live in that town, from them I could reconnect with four of my childhood friends.

I now can cross one off my bucket list ^_^



January 29, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

Insecurity, yeah that's what I feel when I'm writing in English. It has been forever since I started my first blog about art, food and gardening. But it was abandoned before it really took off. (I still blame on my disorder for that :D ) Many times I withdraw to leave comments on friend's Facebook pages, even if I have so much to say. Afraid of grammatical mistakes when I write. Or I might offend somebody or something. I was too afraid to face people reaction...feel shame and stupid. If at the end I write something it was shortened and filtered. Just like this blog after I read it again I feel it is not clear enough about what am I going to say. It's too short! so over 2 weeks, I am now expanding the paragraphs.

There is a funny story...not long after I arrived in United States. Picture me with this gentleman in a fine art gallery .... we were in a conversation about art, I was doing pretty good in the beginning. At one point after he says something I just smile at him to expect more what he will say next. He looks at me with a little awkward face, I still smile genuinely. Then he left!! oh owww! I think that was wierd.... In my mind I was panicking and thinking..what I did wrong? What I did wrong? Then I try to rewind the sound of the last statement he made. hit me! He was asking me a question and waiting for my answer but only get smile from me!! No wonder he left! He must think I'm a weirdo! I felt so stupid and that moment haunts me for years! Ha! so I suck in conversation too!

Every beginning of the new year I sees many of my friends make a new resolution. I was never ever a big planner, let alone to pledge a new resolution. But this year I don't know what got into me, at this point of 2016. I decided to make a new resolution. Starting out to do fine art/conceptual photography. And trying again to blog, face the fear..the insecurity. By blogging at least I can record my journey along the way. The progress of my work and how I will grow and hopefully can become an inspiration as other have inspired me. 

I'm excited to share this short video link below, showing the process of my very first official conceptual photography called "Song of the Sea". Inspired by one of the best animated movies I have ever watched with the same title. The movie makes me feel this burst of emotions (love, enchanting and magical). I plan to make a series of this theme, fingers crossed! In composing the image, I gathered 6-7 photos that I took on my travels around the world. Blending them together as I imagine the picture will look like. Mostly used tool are brushes and layer masks in Photoshop, layering shadow and light to create a dramatic feel. I also love to see movement in my art using elements including wind, fog, clouds and water. I think the video will explain better than words. This is my first attempt making this type of video. In the future I will be sharing more details in editing. 

Let me know what do you think on comment below. Your feedback will be much appreciated! ^_^








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