Rank #1: 003 : Aleira Moon - Self Expression, Art, and Photography as a Way to See Others, and Be with Self
Try as I might, I can’t quite remember the moment the fabric of my world peeled opened just enough so that Aleira Moon could saunter onto my path, first as an artist I admired online for a long while, then the artist behind the lens deftly capturing my own likeness.
So, I can’t offer you a proper introduction, one befitting of such a connection, forgive me? Though I do wonder if perhaps my foggy memory is instead a trick of the senses. Perhaps she simply emerged into my world one day from the deep nothingness of the ether all creation is pulled from, not unlike her own visionary tendencies…
Photographer, artist, and self expression activist (among other things, many of them) Aleira believes in the power of art and beauty. She tends to both the seen and unseen spaces in this world by exploring the human experience, living for the wild magick that dances and weaves it’s way through everything, and encouraging others to seek out ways of fully coming home to their aliveness too, in whatever form that takes.
Just between you and me, there’s something wonderful about Aleira’s way of being that has me contemplating if she’s even of this world. At least, I would hazard a guess she’s spent eons shifting between realms, never quite losing her connection with each along the way. A seer and conduit, she plays with the elements in a way that tells you that there is nothing in the fabric of your being that would throw her. Nothing too sweet, nothing too dark, nothing too textured, and nothing too true. Feet planted firm and barefoot on the earth, crown open, and eyes trained on glimmers of otherworlds begging for attention, Aleira’s ability to draw forth the distinctive life force of those who sit before her (human or otherwise) and turn it into art is unwavering.
This beauty joined me for an evening conversation after a day of testing her creative limits shooting food (people are more her thing). I was a little nervous to be speaking to a creator I admire so much, but this ended up being one of the richest and most nourishing conversations I've ever had.
Perhaps this pocket of space and time could be that for you, too?
Topics we wrapped ourselves around:
- How self exploration in art impacts her capacity to see and be with vulnerability in others
- Venturing into the sphere of commercial photography, and why she won't compromise on authenticity
- How being sensitive enables to read her clients (no matter how much they think they're hiding)
- Consciously cultivating intuitive sensibility and presence through her studies of Art Therapy
- How we really are all as beautifully human as each other
- Employing a framework of archetypes when capturing the essence of her clients
- How she experiences transmissions of inspiration and insight about clients during a shoot
- The medicine of working with 'what is' and the beauty of dancing with spontaneity
- Why she loves working in and with nature
- The bridge between soul self and human self
- Being a creative chameleon and the power of showing up for one creative endeavor at a time
- Not going it alone
- Her upcoming solo exhibition
May 25 2020
Rank #2: 002 : Jordan Plotnek - The Journey From Conservative Engineer to Nomadic Artist
My first encounter with Jordan Plotnek was while bundled into a bus on a wine tour many a year ago; another life, another time for us both.
Most of us give over to at least a kind of transformation as the moments of our lives ramble on, though in his case the journey tells of a complete and considered reconstruction of self. One that can only truly be executed through deep introspection and commitment to being on mettle, again and again.
As an artist, musician, engineer, and scientist, Jordan has chosen to devote his life to solving some of humanity’s most pressing issues through professional pursuits in multiple fields (including cybersecurity, counter-terrorism, and critical infrastructure, though we don't really delve into these here). Inspired by both the moral challenges of his ongoing security endeavours and his travel experiences, his artwork (expressionist painting, mostly) explores themes surrounding the nature of humankind and human society at large.
When I tune into Jordan, I sense a man standing at the centre of the world, listening and feeling as it heaves endless data points at him without much consideration at all for his own determinations. Perhaps once he tried to catch them all, metabolise en masse, but in this moment he conducts the onslaught like one might an orchestra; part detailed composition, part spontaneous riff, he employs a receptive and inner knowing of where these edges are best met to conjure potent, commanding melodies that beckon us all forward into the skin of our own inquisitive nature.
He joined me for a conversation from his little pocket of Montréal, Knob Creek Kentucky in hand and curiosity in heart. At times we meandered into territory we had covered off air previously, and delved deeper, and at others we met at the fringes of fields not yet explored in our conversations.
I hope you enjoy our chat as much as we did.
The ground we covered:
- Jordan’s passage from conservative engineer to nomadic artist
- My own unsuspecting role in his evolution
- How personal aesthetic influences our sense of self
- Creativity as an outlet for emotion
- Declaring himself an artist first
- The ripples and responses of those who bear witness to transformation
- Dancing between systems based thinking and intuitive instinct
- What it means to have someone in your corner through drastic personal transformation
- Leaning into being a conduit for intuition with his art
- The liberating impact of polyamory, and how opening up his relationship opened up new threads of intimacy and nourishment
- What he craves now in the face of an unstable world
- Losing trust in the narratives given to you
- Jordan’s Journey From Military Engineer To Nomadic Artist
- The Living Myth podcast by Michael Meade (in the episode I mixed up this one with Sharon Blackie’s podcast This Mythic Life, which is also excellent)
- Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari
May 24 2020
Rank #3: 001 : Traversing New Territory – My Foray into New Realms of Conversation and Contemplation
Welcome, my friend.
This little project is very close to my heart.
Other People is a conversational and contemplative project, where I will be exploring stories and drawing out the wisdom living in people I consider to be everyday sages, artists, and others who’ve lived their lives well and have stories to share.
I can appreciate that this may not be for you, but if your interest is piqued, then by all means get cosy and listen in as I commit to finding my feet in this particular realm of inquisition and connection. Thank you for your patience as I get comfortable behind the mic.
And, if while you’re listening, to these first few episodes especially, some comes to mind or heart that you’d love to hear a conversation with please reach out, I’d love to hear from you.
I look forward to being nestled in your ears and sharing these beautiful moments with you. I hope you get as much out of these conversations as I do.
Speak soon, friend.
May 23 2020