contemporary collage paintings
the process
Leslie Avon Miller

My life flows when I'm in my art.

Jean De Muzio

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Feeling Zest About Those Hopes and Dreams

This piece, called Dancing Fish, by Leslie Avon Miller is on its way to the National Collage Society Annual Post Card Show। 4 x 6 inches, on paper
I really enjoyed reading and hearing about the goals readers have for their creativity and art. So many juicy ideas; to be published, to take the iconic photograph, to travel and teach, to continue to create for a very long time, to have a great studio space, to say something, to be authentic. My wish for each person is to achieve their goals and then some.
When I decided to write about this tonight, I looked on line at the models for achieving goals. A lot were from the business world. Focus and concentration. Dedication. All well and good I suppose. But it all just seems so task oriented, and being the rebel that I am I tend to, well, rebel at those forceful strident marching orders.
I like the idea that my goals call to me, pull me forward, engage me and feel so natural. The element of work becomes play and following my curiosity is fun, fun, fun. I experience a flow.
I recently was at a talk on Positive Psychology. The elements needed for successful employment, so they say, are zest and hope. People also respond to autonomy, the opportunity to use one’s strengths and connection with other people.
I feel all of that about my goal of providing a high quality workshop experience for artists. I have so much zest and hope I can leap out of bed in the morning when I get a chance to work on my ideas. And since I am doing this myself, I have plenty of autonomy. I think leading a workshop would fit all of the above requirements. So I don’t have to artificially develop or enforce focus, concentration and dedication because it is already built into the goal for me. That’s why it is an activity that calls to me “Leslie, come work on the workshop outline! It is so yummy!” My goal is in alignment with who I am being, not just what I am doing.
So I see two workshops in my future; one on line and by conference call, and one face to face. A combination of art technique, art talk, artist coaching, fun, and dreaming big. And I have just decided I will take my face to face work shop to New Zealand and Australia. For starters. Who knows where else? It is all just so exciting! Zest! And Hope! I can see it in my mind’s eye now….How about you and your juicy dream?


  1. Hi Leslie,

    I like your dancing fish! Looks like an Angel Fish.

    And Australia and New Zealand?! Lucky you. Do you need anyone to cary the bags?

  2. Love this blog because it is full of the force that finds me up and working, playing with my own ZEST for what i am doing. You seem to have a hold on your dreams and I understand your enthusiasm.

    My days are shorter than my desires, my drive is bigger than my energy level and my happiness is seated in the love I hold for all that is yet to come. A very encouraging post. To DREAM!

  3. go for it Leslie - it's all about following the dream!

  4. Is that a bit of shorthand in your collage? It's perfect! Zest and hope? Love it!!!

  5. I feel inspired by your zest! Watch out NZ and OZ, here comes Leslie!

  6. I really love the tones of the last few you have uploaded here. Really beautiful stuff!

  7. your dancing fish is beautiful. and the numbers again, really love that detail, i know i said it before...
    and great plans!! what about a stop in Portugal? :)

  8. Love the fish...really love the fish!
    Zest and Hope and juicy's all yours!

  9. That word "Zest" is such a great word...your "Dancing Fish" and Dream filled post is just wonderful.

  10. Your art work is so rich and subtle a joy to look at.

  11. Nod nod nod.

    Come see the great grrl organizing the creative soul retreat. She is marvellous.

  12. I stumbled across your blog a few months ago and enjoy it.
    Great to hear you're planning on coming to NZ(where I'm from) to take some work shops. I'll keep an eye out for further details...


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