Blog Archive

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Found: My camera, plus I'm a psychic now

The thing's been missing since January, and we hadn't uploaded the pictures from it since sometime in 2008.  Yeah.  It's kind of a miracle this blog gets updated at all.

However, I've got a recent photo for you that I'm really proud of, for a couple of reasons.  First, the kind lady whose hand I'm about to show you told me that she got her most recent henna (prior to visiting me) at Indiana Beach, where she paid almost double what I charged her, and was... underwhelmed by the result.  The henna never really darkened, and she wasn't too thrilled with the artist's skill either.  Not to brag too excessively, but she was a lot happier with mine.

Second, this design was a complete and total "wing-it" from the first line; neither of us was sure what we would end up with, so I was as surprised and happy as she was with how it turned out.  Yes, I know that sounds like a line of bull - how could I not know what I was drawing, right?

Well, you see.  There's this thing.

After I've been slinging the henna for awhile, I kind of tap into a deeper intuition than I usually work with - it's almost like someone is standing over my shoulder going, "no, no, you're gonna draw this".  Other times I feel less like I'm inventing a design and more like I'm tracing something that's already there; I really can nearly see the basic shape, or at least a starting outline, when I look at the client's hand or leg or whatever.  I hesitate to call it "psychic" because that just sounds way too full of myself, but I'm kind of sleepy right now and I can't come up with a better word for it right at the moment. 

How do I explain it... okay, you know what it feels like to get an idea, right?  You're asking yourself what to have for dinner or how to write that story or do that other crafty thing, and your mind says, "oh, I know, how about..." and you've got an idea.  Right?

Okay. Now, if it's never happened to you, try to imagine that you first say, "oh, I know," and you get your idea, and then you immediately follow that with, "wait, what? That? Really?"  The biggest thing for me is that sometimes the thing doesn't really feel like it's completely your idea; there's some aspect of it that feels like someone else just gave you their idea and made you say, "huh?"  It's not what you'd normally come up with.  It isn't completely you, if that makes any sense.


The lady was feeling a little skeptical after her most recent henna experience, and I think maybe she wanted to test me a little bit.  Certainly she was curious to see what I could do for her.

Her boyfriend's design made even less sense to me, but he loved it, so that makes it a success.

That's the hardest part - not having the idea, but trusting it and being willing to run with whatever comes into my head, even - especially - if it doesn't make sense at first glance.

So, how many of you have had similar experiences?  Do you run with them?  What kind of results do you get?  I want to hear about it.

Till next time,



  1. I'm thinking about what you wrote about the design revealing itself as you draw it. I've had what I think is a similar experience in the area of interior design. I had a friend who commented after we moved from one house to another. She thought my "taste" had changed during the move. I thought instead that it would have been silly to put some of that stuff in the new house because "this house wants to be contemporary." -dbc

  2. Absolutely! I can't imagine ever being "contemporary" myself, but I definitely can relate to seeing an empty space and knowing, somehow, what needs to go in or on it.