Creating Abundance through Imagination

We’ve received a great variety of submissions so far and have nearly 12-15 artists’ work to include in the August issue. Thanks to everyone who has submitted or contributed in any other way – and we accept submissions at any time to my email address, for this or upcoming issues.

Many of our artists sell prints of their work online, or are in the process of finding publishers and agents for longer written works. We will provide links and information regarding this once the webzine goes up, and we strongly encourage you to contact our artists regarding purchasing their work.

We also own the domain and will redirect people here soon.
In terms of putting our title into action, discovering a theme from all of the ‘random’ works submitted…that of course is up to readers and contributors also, but what I’ve noticed is a trend towards creative uses of various materials and sources from which to draw inspiration. Emily Chimiak’s scientific background informs her evocative paintings, reflecting the internal thermal molecular movement of objects around us. Fran Laniado’s short story is inspired by the hardships and disorientation, yet strong sense of family love and loyalty of Mexican migrant workers – and the plot concept hit her during an academic lecture she attended. Siiri Kohonen’s combined digital images reflect shapes, colors, and images from daily life which he finds interesting or surprising and picks out to modify and explore. Artists are innovating new sources for creative inspiration, and new ways to draw upon familiar ones.

This concept is refreshing now with the media and our daily experiences with the economic downturn sending us constant messages of fear regarding terrorism, environmental crises, wars, shortages, financial crises, etc where we are tempted to give up, to shrink our creativity and focus just on protecting ourselves.

However, the international artists in August’s Synchronized Chaos issue have shown, through a wide variety of projects, that the everyday moments, natural and human-made phenomena, tragedies, and challenges facing our world can be transformed through art and curiosity into positive opportunities for growth and invention. The Virunga Artisans, a group of basket weavers and carvers in east/central Africa profiled in this issue, represent a path towards wildlife conservation that also encourages dignified creative work for the area’s locals. They offer a creative alternative to the binary thinking which so often gets people stuck: animals OR people, progress OR traditional culture, etc and illustrate an innovative, rather than paralyzing, response to the fears of mountain gorilla extinction or of facing dire poverty in the region.

Perhaps inspiring people to choose creative growth rather than self-shrinkage in the face of personal, societal, and ecological fears and challenges is one of the crucial functions of art. Perhaps it is our writers, our painters, our playwrights, our graphic designers, our scientists and dreamers and inventors who can encourage us to transform our fear into an impetus for useful adaptation to a new era. And perhaps it is they who can lead the way in inspiring a more compassionate, inclusive future by promoting the creative ability to imagine another’s perspective, to put ourselves in another living creature’s place.

I take this opportunity to thank everyone who has already contributed to August’s feast of creative abundance, and encourage people to continue submitting for future issues and to pull themselves up a chair and enjoy the banquet!

— Cristina Deptula, Creative Facilitator