About Arianna Helen
I'm working on a self-directed, self-created Sustainable Living and Transformational Creativity program to complete my independent “Bachelor of Arts and Science (B.A.S.) degree”. The program is rooted in my desire to develop skills for creative expression and self transformation, to explore spiritual and metaphysical philosophy, to learn Positive Psychology theories and holistic methods of healing physically and psychologically, to find ways people and communities connect to the natural world, and to discover optimal ways of living that do not negatively impact the environment.
I've already completed AA and AS degrees as well as requirements to transfer to a State University as a Junior. Taking into consideration that I have two years of college (or about 90 units) left to complete a Bachelor degree, I've put together a curriculum that integrates science and arts using three connecting categories, with reading, writing, and foreign language lessons as well as assignments to attend or participate in other directed learning activities, workshops, or presentations.
I reserve the right to adjust the curriculum as I see fit, to make the program as useful and cohesive as I am able.
"The creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect but by the play instinct acting from inner necessity. The creative mind plays with the objects it loves." ~ C. G. Jung
- Read the following nine (9) books: The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron; Understanding Exposure, Understanding Shutter Speed, and Understanding Close-Up Photography by Bryan Peterson; Digital Macro Photography by Ross Hoddinott; The Art of Photographing Nature by Martha Hill; Close-Up Photography in Nature by Tim Fitzharris; The Complete Guide to Night & Low-Light Photography by Lee Frost; and The Complete Guide to Altered Imagery by Karen Michel.
- Complete at least 60 days of writing a minimum of 750 words each day at 750words.com based on the "Morning Pages" free-write tool in The Artist's Way. One (1) month during the program should be signed up with the 750words.com monthly challenge and completed without missing a day. The challenge month does not need to be contiguous with the other 30 days, which can be done any time throughout the program.
- Write an autobiographical paper between 1000-1500 words, post it as a biography on personal blog in the "About" section.
- Write three (3) works of poetry inspired by nature, consciousness, dreams, art, or the heart:
Silently Flow Between, There is Only Presence, My Current Interpretations of Two Kay Nielsen Illustrations
- Write a short work of fiction, a minimum of 1250 words, incorporating themes connected to this program.
- Post at least 300 photographs on this blog during the program. Experimentation and development of photographic skills is expected. Photos can be posted as individual photos, in themed series, as collages, or time-lapse videos:
Experimental: HDR Experiments: Coast, Timelapse: Calendula Blooming
Events: Saint Patricks Day: Hot Club Beelzebub at the Arlene Francis Center, Hot Club Beelzebub plays the Whiskeydrome, High Sierra Music Festival 2011, Handcar Regatta 2011, McCloud Sun Halo, Spinning Through Space, Simon & Romklao's Wedding Reception, Vaux's Swifts, Delta Pond Rookery
Travel: Mexico Trip, Pacific-Northwest Roadtrip
Artistic: Sunset Through the Grass, Broken, Dead Baby Coyote
Nature: Garden Insects, The Lizard and Hamilton, Summer Flowers, Two Peas, Lovers, Cucumber Vine
- Create two physical photo gallery arrangements: Have multiple photos printed; frame and hang on wall space in an arrangement using theories of color, subject, and composition as a whole.
- Complete at least sixteen (16) creative projects. Forms can be paper-making, crochet, knitting, woodworking, painting, drawing, collage, pottery, or other two-dimensional or three-dimensional medium. Each project should be photographed or scanned and featured on the blog. Classes taken to learn techniques should be written up as reviews and posted on this blog:
Independent: Crocheted Creation Blanket, Spiral Baby Blanket, Fish in a Bottle, Laccaria and Hygrocybe Drawing, Bedside Table Refinish, Fish in a Bottle: Seahorse
Class: Drawing and Composition Studies, Writing Assignment DHR#1 Art 7a Beginning Drawing and Composition, Writing Assignment DHR#2 Art 7a Beginning Drawing & Composition
- Go on 12 solo "Artist's Dates", as described in The Artist's Way and write 250-1000 word blog posts on the experiences as a whole and as a practice.
"It is the marriage of the soul with Nature that makes the intellect fruitful, that gives birth to imagination." ~ Henry David Thoreau
Transformation: Psychology/Philosophy/Consciousness/Personal Growth/Integral Practices
- Read the following twenty-one (21) books and post a 250-1000 word essay reviewing or summarizing important points or what I personally choose to take away from each work: Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors by Carl Sagan and Ann Druyan, The Voice of Knowledge by Don Miguel Ruiz, The Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield, Siddhartha by Herman Hess, Divine Magic by Doreen Virtue, Heart by Gail Godwin, The Secret Life of Plants by Peter Tompkins and Christopher Bird, Intelligence in Nature by Jeremy Narby, The Secret Teachings of Plants by Stephen Harrod Buhner, The Emotional Lives of Animals by Marc Bekoff, Medicine Cards: The Discovery of Power Through the Ways of Animals by Jamie Sams and David Carson, Magical Creatures by Elizabeth Pepper and Barbara Stacy, A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle, Green Psychology by Ralph Metzner, Ph.D., Integral Life Practice by Ken Wilber, Living Deeply by Marilyn Schlitz et al, Cultivating Inner Peace by Paul R. Fleischman, MD, An Alchemy of Mind by Diane Ackerman, The Tao of Physics by Fritjof Capra, Awaken Healing Energy Through the Tao by Mantak Chia, and Nonviolent Communication by Marshall B. Rosenberg
- Watch the following films: Mind Walk, and Conscious Acts of Creation. Write 250-1000 word blog post reviewing or summarizing important points or what I personally choose to take away from each film.
- Research, write, and post sixteen (16) blog entries between 750-1250 words on any subject within these categories of Transformation. Entries can be accompanied with photography or illustration:
Purification with the Moon, Sigils, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry
- Complete five (5) levels of Rossetta Stone Spanish (Latin America).
- Maintain LoveQ (http://twitter.com/LoveQ) on Twitter and LoveQuotations (http://www.facebook.com/LoveQuotations) on Facebook.
- Attend a minimum of three (3) transformative workshops or retreats and write a 250-1000 word blog post on the experience.
- Evening of Sound Healing with Master Mingtong Gu and Silvia Nakkach - September 25, 2010
- Getting the Love You Want - A Spiritual Path for Couples with Dr. Harville Hendrix, PhD and Dr. Helen LaKelly Hunt - December 10-12, 2010
- 10 day Vipassana meditation course - December 19-30, 2010
- 3 day Vipassana meditation practice - April 21-24, 2011
- Dr. Steven Greer - E.t. contact through cosmic consciousness - June 13, 2011
- 3 day Vipassana meditation practice - May 3-6, 2012
"The possession of Knowledge, unless accompanied by a manifestation and expression in action, is like the hoarding of precious metals: a vain and foolish thing. Knowledge, like wealth, is intended for use." ~ The Kybalion
- Read the following seven (7) books, and post a 250-1000 word essay reviewing or summarizing important points or what I personally choose to take away from each work: What We Leave Behind by Derrick Jensen and Aric McBay; Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver; The Backyard Homestead edited by Carleen Madigan; Nutrition and Physical Degeneration by Weston A. Price; The Fourfold Path to Healing by Thomas S. Cowan, Sally Fallon, and Jaimen McMillan; Healing with Whole Foods by Paul Pitchford; and Born to Run by Christopher McDougall
- Watch the following films: The Living Matrix, and Fridays at the Farm. Write 250-1000 word blog post reviewing or summarizing important points or what I personally choose to take away from each film.
- Post a minimum of sixteen (16) written and illustrative (photography or illustration) blog entries detailing the process of making slow-foods, growing and harvesting edible plants, or living sustainably:
Sharing Apples with Codling Moths, Jaes-Allergy-Free Cake, Spring Garden Activity, Rosemary Powder, Mom's Oven, Tobacco Story, Liquid Hand Soap, Label Crazy and Kitchen Chemistry, The Toothpaste Experiment, New Clothesline, Homegrown Radishes, Slow Food - an Escargot Experiment, Buckingham Chicken Tractor, Sikkim Cucumber, Blueberry Flowers, Winter Pole Beans, Spring 2014
- Attend a minimum of three (3) workshops or talks about these topics and write a 250-1000 word blog post on the experience.
- Nourishing Traditions: Fermented Cod Liver Oil - presented at the Petaluma Seed Bank - September 26, 2010
- Tara Firma Farms Speaker Dinner, with Lierre Keith, author of The Vegetarian Myth: Food Justice and Sustainability - September 11, 2010
- Fruit Tree Pruning Workshop - Petaluma Seed Bank - January 27, 2011
- Mendocino Permaculture’s 28th Annual Winter Workshop and Seed Exchange - Boonville - February 05, 2011
- Freestone Fermentation Festival - May 21, 2011
- National Heirloom Exposition - September 15, 2011
- Attend a minimum of five (5) Sonoma County Mycological Association events:
- SOMA Member Meeting - March 17, 2011
- SOMA Culinary Group Lunch - April 10, 2011
- SOMA Member Meeting - May 19, 2011
- SOMA Mushroom Camp - January 14-16, 2012
- SOMA Mushroom Camp - January 18-20, 2014
- Continue planting trees toward a 1000 trees lifetime goal and keep a log of trees planted on 1000 trees; 2011 Laguna de Santa Rosa Tree-a-Thon
- Yoga practice: using at least three (3) different yoga DVDs and at least two teachers. Write a 250-1000 word blog post about my yoga experience.
- Complete the Couch to 5k running program and write 250-1000 word blog post on the experience.
"Let food be your medicine and medicine be your food." ~ Hippocrates
The Artist's Way: http://www.theartistsway.com
750 Words: http://750words.com
Health Month: http://healthmonth.com
Couch to 5k: http://www.c25k.com
Writing Resources: http://ksdl.ksbe.edu/writingresource
Northern California Vipassana Center: http://www.manda.dhamma.org
Khan Academy: http://www.khanacademy.org/
Learners TV: http://www.learnerstv.com
Philosophers Notes: http://philosophersnotes.com/
Lynda.com Software Training: http://www.lynda.com/
SOMA (Sonoma County Mycological Association): http://www.somamushrooms.org/
Freestone Fermentation Festival: http://www.freestonefermentationfestival.com/
National Heirloom Exposition: http://theheirloomexpo.com/
Weston A. Price Foundation: http://www.westonaprice.org/