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Holiday Shopping List, a few of Ka’s favorite things: for supporting small and local businesses

These are a few of my favorite things:

Our strongest votes are cast with our dollars, so consider buying from small, independent businesses rather than dumping your hard earned cash into massive corporate pockets this holiday season. Keeping our money within our communities, and helping small businesses thrive is now more important than ever.

I have compiled a list of some of my favorite gift-worthy items, from folks I know and trust, for your shopping pleasure. These are hidden gems which cannot be found in any store, but only in specific online boutiques and shops. I hope these ideas help make your holiday gift giving experience more pleasurable and fun, and that you enjoy browsing through this goldmine of goodies.

private-massage-in-montana1 Massage, bodywork, and acupuncture: Most of us don’t think to spend our money on much needed pleasures such as these, but we all need it (especially now). Even as a former massage therapist, I rarely give myself the gift of relaxation and wellness, even though I know it is an important contributor to my physical well being and happiness. It’s probably easy to find a therapist, or many, in your community. While you can find them online, I find it’s best to ask around and seek out someone whom your friends know and trust. A gift certificate from a local spa is also a good way to go if you don’t know of any trusted healers. Most massages range from $60 – $180, for an hour or an hour and a half long sessions. Your loved one will be more grateful than they may even know, until they are relaxed, renewed, and blissed out after receiving your thoughtful and loving gift. (PS, Don’t forget the tip.)

trulydecadentperfumes-500x5002 Oils and perfumes: Andrea Shanti of Holistic Body Therapy is one of the most skilled, when it comes to olfactory alchemy. I’ve had the pleasure of visiting her apothecary, and was blown away by her ability to combine fragrant oils to perfection. As one with a highly sensitive sense of smell, I was impressed how each blend was benevolent to my nose. She knows her stuff, and her hand crafted potions are divine. My absolute favorite is her “Lushess” blend, of cocao, blood orange, nutmeg and rose oils. It is so delicious, you will want to devour whomever is wearing it. She makes it available in a spritzer, massage oil (highly recommended), or as a pure, concentrated blend. She has a wide variety of other goodies on her site, which also include body products, beauty products, and those specially formulated for mama’s and mothers to be. Some of my other faves include the Celebration, Joi de Vie, and Amma spritzers, and a her trio of men’s colognes, Magic, Mastery, and Manifest.  Stock up at: http://www.holisticbodytherapy.net/

pbo-wo-23 Earthsong Pomegranate Breast massage oil: This stuff is amazing. It’s a lovely blend of oils with a warming fragrance that is both subtle and heavenly. Sunny, the mother of my dearest friend, crafts her oil by hand, from an Ayurvedic recipe she concocted, using all organic ingredients. Did you know that breast massage is crucial for unblocking lymphatic congestion, can make breasts perkier and happier, and even prevent cancer? Sunny has even made a breast massage tutorial you can watch online. Give the gift of self love. I’ve enjoyed adding this small ritual into my daily routine, and in doing so, it helps to relax my being, and open my heart. One bottle goes a long way, as long as you don’t slather it all over your entire body every day… and it’s tempting. Get it here : http://www.pomegranatebreastoil.com/

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4 Hand made mystical jewelry: One of my favorite new discoveries in Appalachia, is Black Black Moon. I found her at a festival last year, and I purchased a necklace from her that constantly draws complements. Her style is unique and versatile. I would describe her work as chic, opulent and magical. Using crystals, unusual beads, findings, and chains, Hanna crafts an array of well made and beautiful adornments that are also affordable. Shop online at: http://www.blackblackmoon.com/

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5     Art: Deck the walls with some visions that will inspire your loved one every single day. Even if you don’t have the dough to buy an original work, most artists offer prints of various sizes and prices, ranging from $15 to the hundreds. Supporting artists is one way to ensure the continual creation of beauty in our world, and helps today’s visionaries bring forth the much needed wisdom, hope, and vision for a healthy planet, and a loving, peaceful future. I have a nice list of some of my favorite visionary artists, linked to their individual websites here: https://www.serpentfeathers.com/inspiration/

podpoi-romgal_800x8006 Flow Toys: Do you have a dancer, fire spinner or a juggler in your life? Light them up with a new blinking toy this year. Spinning poi or staff is a great body / mind meditation, and personally I found that it drastically improved my dance skills and coordination. And, most importantly, it’s fun! Sean and Prisna make the best on the market, and they are incredibly lovely people. Get your flow on at: https://www.flowtoys.com/

images7 Quality time, or IOU’s: One of the best ways to show your love, is with the gift of your time and presence. It’s a win/win. You can write a coupon, offering brunch, a home cooked dinner, a retreat into nature or a walk together, a catch-up chill session with a bottle of wine, or a movie… This list is infinite. Giving someone an IOU of your time, gives them something to look forward to, and let’s them know you love them so much, you want more of them in your life. Just make sure you honor it when they are redeem your gift.

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8       Classes and workshops: Has your loved one mentioned wanting to try on a new skill, or expressed interest in learning a new art form? Many classes and workshops are available, and they can be a wonderful way to give a fresh breath of inspiration to someone, or help them take their skill set up a notch or two. Check around your area for teachers offering courses, or you can also find classes online, if in-person classes are not available in your area. If your loved one is a dancer, buying them a class card at the studio they attend will most likely a much appreciated, winning move.

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9        Etsy gift cards: If you just cannot figure out what he or she would really want, and you’re tired of fretting about it, get them an Etsy gift card. It’s like a normal gift card at any store, except your money will eventually go to small business and artisans rather than a corporate CEO. Etsy is full of all kinds of wonderful things,  made by awesome people, brave enough to face the goliath of business on their own. You can get one here: https://www.etsy.com/giftcards

art-blanket-yinandyang10      My digs: I wouldn’t make it if I didn’t love it, so on my list of favorite things, I am including my own creations. As far as gifts go, my top hits are my heirloom woven cotton blankets featuring my art, a wide selection of art prints, and headdresses. I also do custom work for people, so if you would like to treat your dearest to something specially made, just for them, send me a message through the contact link on my site. My print shop is here: https://www.serpentfeathers.com/shop/   And my headdresses are in my Etsy shop: https://www.etsy.com/shop/Serpentfeathers

           I hope these recommendations help ease your holiday shopping spree. Let’s keep our money flowing through our communities so that our hard earned dollars don’t end up sitting in some billionaire’s off shore bank account. Supporting small businesses spreads the love further, and ensures other families can make their bills and continue to create unique and beautiful things, and give gifts to their loved ones as well. May your heart and mind be blessed with peace and love this holiday season, and may we all give one another some joy and kindness.

Happy Holy-days,

Ka

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Bay Area Headdress Workshop

Join me in Windsor, CA on October 6th & 7th, for my headdress workshop! I will be sharing my techniques in crafting crowns, and demonstrating how to work with a variety of materials, while encouraging and assisting you in your creative process. This workshop is all play, and offers a fun and exciting way to express yourself, and your avatar, in an inspiring and nurturing environment. Spots are filling up quickly, so be sure to register now if you want in on the fun! For more information and tickets, click here.
 

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Sonic Bloom 2016

What a joy it was to see so many of my beloved friends, dance and make merry in the Colorado Rockies. Sonic Bloom has always been one of my favorite events to be and to perform. I shared my art in the visionary gallery, and danced to one of my most loved musical producers, Deya Dova.  We have had a mutual artistic crush on one another for some time, and getting to perform together was an ecstatic and fulfilling experience. Here are a couple photos from the show, and a link to her new music video, “Return of the Bird Tribes”.

 

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LEAF Festival Performance May 2016

I had quite the journey at Lake Eden Arts Festival. I danced four separate numbers, on two nights and ran a merch booth for the first time ever, stocked with headdresses and prints of my art. It’s safe to say I bit off more than I could chew, but somehow, and with the help of some very nice friends, I got it all down. The first night of performances, I danced a more casual set with Kaya Project, and had a wonderful time with them. On Saturday, I opened for the headlining act, with a solo number followed by a choreographed duet with my friend Jaclyn. I do not think selling my art at craft festivals is my thing, as I lost a lot of money on it, but it was a learning experience to say the least. Maybe I’ll give it another shot some day, in a different setting. The performances were the highlight of the weekend, and I will be back to dance at LEAF in the fall, sans booth.

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Ka dances LEAF Festival, May 2016. Photo by Christopher Gill

Ka and Jaclyn at LEAF

Ka and Jaclyn dance at LEAF Festival May, 2016, Photo by Christopher Gill

 

Inside my sweet little booth - it was a magical world of wonder

Inside my sweet little booth – it was a magical world of wonder


 

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Headdress Workshop at CoSM

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I am excited to announce I will be teaching a workshop on creating headdresses at one of the most inspiring places I know, CoSM, home of Alex and Allyson Grey and their incredible visionary art. Please, join us if you have yearned to make a magical crown for yourself. Learn more HERE.
 

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Winter Enchantment

Winter Enchantment

 

When the leaves have fallen,
And we stand bare,
And splendor has crawled inside,
Warming herself at the hearth of her heart,
She finds herself in there.

Going within,
Under your skin,
Hear the drumbeat in your chest.
Dance to your dreams
When everything seems
To be cold, or lost, or blessed.

In this sweet silence
While nature holds her breath,
May you be held in peace.
May your heart glow bright,
Through the longest of night.
May you find rest in winter’s depth.

May all the love, you’ve ever known
Fill your eyes like stars.
And if tears fall down,
May they bless the ground,
Where in the spring
Flowers will grow.

Hold yourself close
To the flame of your love,
And you will stay safe and warm.
There is no other light,
More beautiful and bright
Than the blazing star of your soul.

Blessed Solstice and Happy Holidays-
Ka Amorastreya

“Winter Enchantment”, acrylic on wood, 5″x7″, 2015

 

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The Aftermath

Serpentfeathers by Jaime Lim Photography
She flew down,
to the rubbled ground,
haunted by loss
her breath the only sound.

She, painted in red
for the blood that was shed
to make a few rich,
so many lives bled.
In search of a seed
to fill this great need
of a new way on Earth
one free from greed

Her spear burned blue
to guide her to true
hearts in the bedlam,
where she found you

Where she found me
and our Earth family
we come now together
and plant the peace tree

May our gardens be grown
in our hearts, be it known
between life and gold
only seeds can be sown.

-Ka

Photography by Jaime Lim
Cinematic Editing by Jaime Lim
Body Paint by Lana Chromium
Make up by Dani Navarro
Head Piece Designer by Ka Amorastreya
Model by Chloe Lloyd

— with Jaime Lim, Chloe Anne Lloyd and Lana Chromium.

 

 
 

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Art Blankets!!

It’s getting cooler outside, a refreshing break after the long scorching heat of summer, and I have the perfect way to stay warm, cozy and inspired. I’ve teamed up with Art Blankets Online, makers of fine woven heirloom blankets featuring the art of visionary masters.  I am honored to have two of my pieces woven into these beautiful soft throws.  They are stunning.  Machine washable and made in the U.S.A, these make original and practical gifts for your loved ones or yourself.  Get yours here.

 

She Sees All art blanket http://artblanketsonline.com/collections/ka-amorastreya

She Sees All art blanket
http://artblanketsonline.com/collections/ka-amorastreya


 

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Transition: New Music Video

Enjoy this beautiful video with music by Rigzin and Random Rab, featuring yours truly. May this song bring beauty to your day and peace to your spirit.


 

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I became the canvas

I became the canvas
And now I understand
Surrender of being changed forever
Under the artist’s hand

To be still, open and reverent
To receive this artist’s prayer
Onto this tapestry of flesh
My bones and spirit wear

A profound dance of tantra
Where skin and needle merge
Pouring forth their ink and blood
As immense sensations surge

Pain folded into pleasure
With each breath I drank it in
Both humbled and empowered by
Each stroke across my skin

I have always been the artist
Always the one to give
To pour my heart out on a canvas
And see my visions live

Then I became the canvas
Stepped to the other side
And learned what it is to be given rapture
By being beautified.

Art by Philip Milic @pmtattoos
Poem by Ka

 

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Immaculate Heart

Dear Woman,
Your heart is immaculate,
has always been.
You were born this way,
pure and perfect, free of sin.
Daughter of Heaven,
Mother of Mysteries,
You are beauty given a body,
love wrapped in skin,
a fountain of wisdom.
Pull the swords and daggers
from your chest and back.
Drop them into
the chasm of yesterday.
You no longer deserve
this torture,
nor did you ever ask,
for this punishment.
May your heart be cradled
in roses,
and adorned with tears of joy.
May the fire of your love
blaze brilliant as a star.
You are immaculate.
Yes, you are.
Immaculate Heart- by Ka Amorastreya
Paper and canvas prints of Immaculate heart are now available here – http://www.serpentfeathers.com/product/immaculate-heart/
 

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For the Love of Elephants

A dream come true: I have always wanted to find ways to generate much needed income for causes that I feel passionately about. I have teamed up with the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust and Elephant Orphanage by auctioning my largest painting, to help the wild elephants of Kenya. This piece was created for the Stand Tall art exhibit at Old Crow Tattoo, where all pieces were to be nine feet tall and three feet wide.  I had never painted at this scale, and was intimidated, to say the least.  I had recently read an article about the incessant ivory poaching still happening to Africa’s elephants.  I felt so sad in my heart, and I couldn’t believe this was still happening today.  The painting became a dedication to the elephants and the plight of their species. It was painted with high quality spray paint and acrylic, using antique doilies and lace for texture, and a ton of love. This piece depicts a life size profile of an elephant, with a tear rolling down his face and dripping off of his tusk, then bursting in to a mandala of pattern and light.  The finish of the tear is glossy, appearing to be wet against the rest of the painting.

I feel an incredible depth of appreciation and admiration for these majestic creatures.  Their capacity for empathy is astounding.  They are known to mourn their lost family members, expressing grief, crying, and even visiting graves year after year to pay respect.  Their families are a vital part of their way of life, just like us. “Those Who Dare to Feel so Deeply” is the title of this homage to a precious species who needs our awareness and support.

The original painting is currently up for auction until the 29th of May, 2015, with 75% of the proceeds being donated to the Wildlife Trust.  The link is here:

http://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/html/auction_kathryn_june_painting.html

I also am printing a limited edition of this piece on canvas in two sizes, 2×6 feet, and 1×3 feet.  Half of the proceeds from these prints will also be donated to the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust.  You may purchase these here: http://www.serpentfeathers.com/product/for-those-who-dare-to-feel-so-deeply/

 

Update: The auction ended successfully, with $6,000 raised for DSWT.  I am beyond thankful for this opportunity to make an impact of this size, to a cause I care deeply about.

 

 

 
 

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Magic

Don’t ask whether or not you have magical powers. Everyone has magical powers. What you should be asking, is how you would use your magical powers.

Original photo by Sequoia Emmanuelle
Model: Chrysta Bell
Headdress: Ka Amorastreya
Dress: Black Lotus Clothing 
 

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Holy Days

May the lights you see outside tonight, reflect the brilliant star of your own heart. 

Together we light up the World in twinkling splendor. May we shine with blazing Love, this season, and always. 

Happy Holy Days,
Ka

Original photo by Sequoia Emmanuelle
 

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Dark Beauty

Thank you, Dark Beauty, for publishing some photos from our shoot with Sequoia Emmanuelle. It is an honor. I am so happy to finally share these images with the world.  

 

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photo by Sequoia Emmanuelle, published by Dark Beauty Magazine

photo by Sequoia Emmanuelle, published by Dark Beauty Magazine


 

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Out of Comfort and Into Greatness

 

In late August, I had an experience with a photographer that pushed me out of my comfort zone and into incredible pictures.  His name is Benjamin Von Wong.

His work is amazing.  He turns photography into an extreme sport, using his engineering skills to produce some of the most beautifully dramatic photographs I have seen, and pushing the envelope of safety and sanity to get his shot. I had seen a collection of images online, months ago, of an underwater photo shoot at a shipwreck site.  The haunting backdrops were juxtaposed with graceful models in flowing dresses, appearing to be going about their business as if it were no big deal.  The images were stunning,  stirring, and certainly stuck out in my memory beyond the hoard of artistic expressions on the web.

He was planning a trip to San Francisco, and posted an inquiry on Facebook, if any models or designers wished to collaborate.  My mother had just found his shipwreck photos, and followed the links to his FB page.  There she left the comment that would spark this epic adventure in art.  He checked out my fan page, as my mom suggested, and immediately messaged me to see if I would be willing to take some photos with him.  Of course, I was thrilled at the idea, said  “yes”, and proceeded to find one day where our crazy schedules would align with the stars.

It was a long day.  It began with a nice layer of fog, which teased us with its cool morning softness.  By the time we finished the first round of makeup, it had vanished, leaving us in the direct sunlight for the entire shoot.  I wondered how Benjamin was going to pull this off, with the high-noon sun casting its sharp shadows downward.  I also wondered how I would fare in the heat wearing all of those feathers.  Ben had a huge crew of dedicated photographers and assistants who really made so much of the magic happen.  They had already hauled tons of equipment to the site, and carved out steps in the cliff side for us to traverse, so that we could get to the spot Ben had chosen.

It was treacherous. It was extreme.  It was sketchy, and it was painful. But, it was worth it.

I was asked to perch myself upon sharp rock formations, just above the crashing waves.  Looking down was a tad nauseating, yet thrilling.  Fortunately, years of ballet classes were now paying off, keeping me balanced and literally on my toes.  It’s funny, how the most beautiful photographs require the most uncomfortable positions.  I was guided to contort the muscles of my body into the most awkward of stances, while trying to find the balance point where I could sink the entire weight of my being onto a couple points of rock, with my mostly bare feet.  Then hold it…. for what seemed like forever, and keep a calm and relaxed face.

While holding these, at times excruciating, poses, Benjamin would bound around the cliff side, sometimes dangling off the edge.  Guiding those who were holding the lights and umbrellas, he kept shooting, over and over, working to fine tune the ideal light in a brilliant dance to complement what the sun was offering, until he found perfection.  Then we waited, for the perfect wave.  My thighs trembling and feet feeling almost impaled, one finally arrived, in the form of a sea dragon unicorn, and he got the shot.  Thank god I relaxed my face.

That shot was our favorite of the entire day, but we still proceeded to photograph the two other embodiments, going up against more sun, high winds and changing tides.  By the end of the day, my legs would no longer hold me in the dramatic lunges that were being requested of me.   My feet were raw. We were all sunburned. The wind was almost ripping my headdress apart.  I knew we were almost there… ten hours later, and still giving our all, though we were summoning the very last of our reserves.  This is devotion.  Once all the pieces aligned, we gave all that we had in order to sieze the opportunity that we had, to create something spectacular.  We created something magnificent, and I am so thankful.

To see Benjamin’s blog post on this experience, go here: http://www.vonwong.com/blog/feartosuccess/

Photo by Benjamin Von Wong

Photo by Benjamin Von Wong

 

 

 

Von Wong / Serpentfeathers

 

 

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To Be Brave and Blossom

Be brave and blossom.
It’s safe to bloom,
To unfurl your colors
And take up room.

It’s time now, to open.
It’s okay.
To show your tender petals
To the light of day.

It can be scary
To open completely.
We sometimes feel wary
To unfold ourselves sweetly.

But better to be ravaged
By the winds and the rain,
Then to miss it all,
The bliss and the pain.

Wrapped tight as a bud,
Pressurized potential,
Yearns to burst forth
With blessings torrential.

Bring all of you forward.
Let go and surrender.
It’s okay to bloom,
And show the world your splendor.

For when we all do,
We become the spring.
Fields full of flowers
Make heavy hearts sing.

When we let ourselves shine
And illuminate each other,
We all become the Divine
Heart of the Lover.

-Ka

Original photo by Sequoia Emmanuelle, headdress by Ka, modeled by the ever lovely Chrysta Bell

 
 

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The Moon

The moon said, “You wanna hear a joke?”. “I’m listening.”, I replied. “So, the ‘dark side of the moon’, as you call it, is just as bright as the side that you see.” She continued,”It’s just like your dark side. Just because you can’t see it, doesn’t mean there’s no light shining there.” Touché.

 

 
 

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Bless your Imagination

Bless your imagination. It is a great and most powerful gift. Whether you realize it or not, you create and destroy worlds within your mind, simply by what you bring forth in thought. Be vigilant, and do your best to imagine what you love, what you find beautiful, and what you see as Holy and Divine. Then, watch as it weaves in the world around you. Bless your beautiful mind.

Original photo by Sequoia Emmanuelle.
 

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Into the Abyss

I blow a kiss
Into the abyss
Where it’s too dark to see
Lurking in me

I send letters of love
To the hurts I have shoved
Into the cracks
Behind my back
I offer flowers
To the times I’ve disempowered
Myself or another
Sister or brotherI light a candle
For the pain I can’t handle
To feel all the way through
Or relieve for you

I sing a song
To the times I was wrong
I sing to when
I fear failure again

I offer a prayer
To the hidden layer
That lays just under
Truth’s mighty thunder

I hold in embrace
The tender place
In all of us
That asks,
“Am I enough?”

I give a smile
For even while
My wounds think themselves unloveable
In fact, they are full of love.

We all break
And we all heal.

 
 

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The Spark

The vision is just the spark, the genius, the genie. It does no good staying nestled in its lamp. The real magic happens when we give it some elbow grease, refine and polish it. Then, Viola! We have our vision’s wish granted.

Original photo by sequoia Emmanuelle.
 

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Wear your Heart

Wear your heart on your sleeve, show your strength to me. Unbridle your passion, so that your heart burns through your chest. Then you know, beyond all doubt, you are true, to yourself, to the All. Let your Phoenix heart rise, from the flames of pain, grief and sorrow. Let it explode you open, until you supernova, leaving the universe in awe of your undeniable majestic beauty.

 
 

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Rise Above

Be extraordinary. We all have our doubts. We all have that voice that tells us we might not be good enough. Talk back. Engage the conversation. Say, “Watch me.” Try anyway. You’ll most likely surprise yourself with what you can do. Amaze yourself. Rise above the norm. Let it out. Debunk your doubt. You are stunning, one of a kind, and essential. 

Photo by Sequoia Emmanuelle
Model: Sarah Eden
Headdress: Ka Amorastreya
Dress: Black Lotus Clothing

 
 

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In the Dark

Only in the dark of night, can you see the stars, and in the brilliant light of the sun, will you cast your deepest shadows.

Original photo by Mario Covic.
 

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The Phoenix

The Phoenix-

So they pushed you down,
tore you up,
told you to quit,
called it shit.

You believed them,
The hate they spoke.
The heart that broke,
Made it hurt to go on.

You questioned yourself.
Why should I share,
When people just tear
Apart what I give?

So you kept it in,
Faded to a flicker
Almost out.
Your passion succumbing
To their doubt.

Burned in the fires
Melted down
Hammered and beaten,
You almost drown.

But then you see
From the flames that be
All around you.
They do not burn you.

Now Tempered and strong
You see they were wrong.
With more conviction than ever,
Now you know,
Why it is so,
That you create how you do,
Shine like you do,
Burn like you do,
Fly like you do.

Rise up beloved creator
You, Phoenix reborn.
Each word from every hater,
Became a feather to adorn,
Your wings of fire,
That burn straight through
Anything and everything
That isn’t true.

Take flight.
Burn bright.
Give light.
It’s your right.

-Ka Amorastreya
 

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You are all You need to Be

Go inside yourself and see
You are all you need to be.

Trying to be like them is vain.
To lose yourself is to go insane.

Be gentle in there.
Handle your heart with care.

Make your inner speak a song,
Especially if you feel wrong.

Because those around you will end up feeling,
The kind of treatment that you are dealing
To yourself inside.
It does not hide.

As within, so without.

Be gracious and compassionate
With your hearts dear friends. World peace starts from within. Pay attention to how you may criticize yourself. Watch and listen. Hug yourself often. Say sweet things to yourself. Love yourself. Only then can you truly love and receive love.

 
 

 
 

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The Skeleton Tree

She and the Skeleton Tree

I love this tree
Across the road from me
stood tall and stark
smooth white bark
dotted with pits
full of acorn bits
some of which would sprout
life bursting out
of death and decay
This is always the way
Last fall it fell
It was loud, I could tell
It tired of standing
now hugging the Earth
Giving new birth
to growth and inspiration
her spirit is free
The Skeleton Tree

Photo by Sequoia Emmanuelle Photography
Model / Headdress : Ka Amorastreya
MUA : Alicia Marie Campbell
Dress : Black Lotus Clothing
 

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It’s All About the L.O.V.E – a tribute to Michael Jackson

After over four years of working on this painting, it is finally complete! Unknowingly, I finished it during the fifth anniversary of MJ’s passing.

This is the story of the painting, “It’s All About the L.O.V.E.”

I never knew much about Michael Jackson. He remained in my periphery while he was alive. I was not a fan of his music, as I was not allowed to listen to anything but Christian tunes as a kid. Once I was a teen, I didn’t get into pop culture. I liked the alternative stuff. I didn’t pay much attention to him. His reputation didn’t seem good, with the trial and plastic surgery, and all the weird and negative media attention. I just kept my distance. The only music video I had ever seen of his, was Scream.

Anyways, soon after his passing MJ started showing up in my dreams, which was strange to me. He kept showing up, as a kid, an adult, and anywhere in between, just wanting to be friends… It’s as if we were. I didn’t understand it, as I never idolized him or payed him much attention. Strange synchronicities, or coincidental omens if you will, kept happening around him and his music, to the point where it was far too frequent and freaky.  I know most people will think I am crazy for telling this story, I’m just a bit psychic. Most people labeled as “crazy” are just able to hear and see things that others cannot, or discredit as being imaginary.

The November after his passing, he started appearing to me in my waking state… Haunting me. I’d never been contacted so much from the other side, other than a few times from my grandma and my friend Heidi… but MJ liked to hang out. At first I thought it was crazy, and I felt awkward and embarrassed about it, but then I just accepted what was happening, and enjoyed his visits. We helped each other a lot. He would give me friendly advice, and I would help him deal with grief, regret and other peoples projections (God, there was a lot of that) from the other side.  He regretted not being able to offer his final performance.  He feared he let all of his fans down.  Most of all, he grieved leaving his children.

He told me things that I never heard but later confirmed through research. He taught me about haters and false accusations, saying, “People are gonna say what they’re going to say. There’s nothing you can do about it.  Especially when you get more into the limelight, people will talk. What’s most important is your integrity. That’s the key. As long as you are in integrity with yourself, that’s all you need to worry about.” I had no idea at the time , how much those words would help me later on, through some seriously heavy times around slanderous people.

He would show up suddenly, always welcome, and tell me about the joys or struggles he was facing in the afterlife.  The visits were frequent for a few months, then slowly began to dissipate. At one point, in the following year, it had been weeks since I had heard from him; I was in my friend’s bathroom, when he showed up.  He was radiant, like a child, frolicking in the gardens of wonder with other young spirits. He said, grinning like the sun, “Look!  I made it!”  I smiled and congratulated him, then he ran off once more, in joy and laughter. I didn’t hear from him for a very, very long time afterwards.

I always wondered why he would want to come visit someone like me, who had absolutely no interest in him while he was alive.  Apparently, he felt comfortable hanging with me because I had no preconceptions of who he was/is. I was like a blank slate with no expectations of him.

I did begin to watch his videos and listen to his music. I then read his autobiography. I was amazed to say the least. I became a fan.

So, yeah, that November I got the hit that I needed to do a painting of him. I started with one layer of blue. I put him into the canvas, let it dry, then painted an entire layer of blue paint on top of it. I asked him if he wanted to collaborate, then splashed some turpentine on the wet paint and left the room. “Go at it.”, I said. When I came back, there were some crazy patterns in the paint… I didn’t like all of it at first, especially the lightning drips out the back of his neck. I wanted to change it, but I refrained and reminded myself, “It’s a collaboration.”.  I knew the story would unfold, if I was patient and open. Sure enough, it did.

My favorite part if this piece was realizing that all the funny looking tiny turpentine drips were flames, lighter flames of his fans all over the world. I also dreaded that part cuz I knew it would be incredibly tedious. It’s as if the story tells us of a soul entering the world, creating such a massive impact in this incarnation, that the entire world, humanity as well as the Earth itself, are showing their appreciation in an eternal encore.

This has been such a profound and beautiful journey.  Obviously, I have left out the details, which are many, but perhaps you can get a sense of the incredible nature of how this painting came to be.  While for me, this is a tribute to Michael Jackson, for him, it is a tribute to his fans.

He still shows up in my dreams from time to time, maybe three or four times a year.  It’s rare, but it always feels like a good friend has come to visit.

And, as I laid the paintbrush down, after the last stroke of pigment left the canvas, “Will You be There” played on my ipod.. randomly.. out of thousands of songs.  Of course it did.
 

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Liberation Movement

I have been honored to dance with Liberation Movement in multiple performances now, and I must say, it is an incredible, ceremonial journey each time.  Grant Chambers and Sasha Rose collaborate with Amazonian shamans to bring forth the medicine of the rainforest into modern electronic music.  The way they are woven together offers a sonic tapestry which sends the listener straight into a healing journey.  Deeply stirring and profoundly touching, Liberation Movement’s musical concoctions move me like I have yet to be moved.  The medicine dances my wings, and the Earth lifts my feet to flight.  Check them out and enjoy what you find.

 


 

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Learned Something New

I recently completed a weekly still life painting course at Sadie Valerie Atelier in San Francisco.  Sadie is a masterful classical artist,  teaching indirect oil painting and still life.  This was a fun and challenging experience.  I’m so glad I did it, and completed the open studio classes having a better understanding of natural light, color and dimension.  These were the first painting classes of any kind that I have ever taken.

 open grisaille

open grisaille

Ka_still_life_closed_grissaile

beginning closed grisaille

 

beginning to add some color

beginning to add some color

Ka's finished still life painting of a swan egg and cockatoo feather

Ka’s finished still life painting of a swan egg and cockatoo feather


 

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Interview with Marya Stark

Rose Dragon headdress on Ka Amorastreya, Photo by Sequoia Emmanuelle

Rose Dragon headdress on Ka Amorastreya, Photo by Sequoia Emmanuelle

I recently had the honor of being interviewed by the beautiful and talented musical muse, Marya Stark.  To get a deeper look into how I grew into my creative unfurling, read the interview here:

Interview of Ka Amorastreya
by Marya Stark

If you like the article, make sure to leave her a comment, as she is growing her online blog!
 

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Serpentfeathers Etsy Shop

Finally, I have opened my Etsy store!  For the first time, some of my headdresses and hair pieces are available for sale to the public.  In the past I have mostly worked on private commissions, which I still love to do, but this time I decided to bust out a few pieces and put them online.   I will be continuing to add fun and unique creations as they come out.  Click Here to Have a look!

 

 

 

 
 

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Sol Purpose Interview

I was recently blessed and challenged to answer some beautifully potent questions for an interview. This is the first time I have ever taken the time to pour my heart out about my art, my dance, my life and how I walk in the world. Thank you Aluna and Ehren for giving me this opportunity to bare my soul. Please follow the link to read more.

http://solpurpose.com/the-artistry-of-ka-amorastreya/

“…..remember that YOU are a powerful creator. Take care and be aware when you are creating. What are you trying to say or make with your songs or paintings? What are you thinking about when you plant those seeds into the Earth? Intention is the seed from which everything grows. Make sure that when you are in a creative space that you are bringing through only what you want to manifest in your life. If you are releasing challenging or painful emotions through your art, this is okay; just make sure to bring it around by weaving positive transformation into your expression. This way, you are literally breaking through and healing your personal challenges and wounds; transforming what is no longer need into beautiful gifts.”
 

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A blessed soul

A blessed soul knows peace. A cursed soul knows suffering. Let us lift the curses we have placed on one another and ourselves, bless each other and ourselves, so that we all may know peace and move on from our suffering.
 

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Beauty’s Witness

Ghost Orchid

Does the elusive flower decide to not bloom because there is no one there to tell her how beautiful she is?  Does she forget to unleash her fragrance because no one will ever venture far enough to smell her essence?   Beauty needs no external witness or validation to exist in nature.  If the beauty we create is not sought out or isn’t openly appreciated by others, let us not be discouraged.  We are beautiful because it feels good to be so.  So much joy is gifted to the one who makes their world more beautiful, even if they are the only one to experience it.  Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and in the heart of the creator.
 

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Communion

This new painting, Communion was completed as we wrapped up the year 2011.  This piece began years ago, at a festival with Even Oldridge of Divine Reflections.  He offered to collaborate, and I gladly accepted.  He photographed me embodied, then with his special painting technique created a black and white portrait, printed it onto canvas, and sent it to me to paint.  Adding color and drawing from the abstract liquid forms this story that longed to be told, the vision took shape.  This is another mirror, an invocation, a peek through the veil of what  occurs when the offering of this dance is made.

 

Even’s work, “Wishbringer” and the seed for “Communion” is below.  See his work at divinereflections.ca


 

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The best Chocolate Truffles in the World

As promised, here is a shout out to the ever lovely, magical alchemista, Caitlin Naramore.  Her exquisite, complex, and utterly delicious chocolate truffles are…. well.. they are so good, that upon having one melt across your tongue, you will find your eyes are rolling back in your head and you start moaning and mmmmm-ing as the heavenly flavors dance in your mouth, and you are speechless for complete lack of words in the human language to describe how good that tastes.   As my friend, Kaia, said (about Caitlin after eating one of her truffles),  “Oh Caitlin!!! They will either put her in jail, or make her president!”  Check her out at www.naramorecreations.com.

YUM!
 

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Serpentfeathers En Vogue

Burning Man 2010 was ultimately my best burn ever.  Just having returned from Boom Festival in Portugal, and after 2009’s burn leaving me feeling bruised, jaded and .. well, burned, I had already made up my mind to not go.  Last minute, talked into it by the Lovely Caitlin Naramore (who makes the best chocolates in the world.. I’m giving you your own post after this, sweet thing) we drove out to the Playa, weekend warrior style, arriving on Saturday morning.  My heart dropped it’s most massive burdens in the course of two days there.  I also honored my father and my dear friend Andrea Burden at the temple.  They had both passed through that year.  I had not worn my feathered embodiment, as my heart’s true wings were finally opened wide, yet, Jessica and Ildiko were both flying beautifully in Sunday’s sunrise in the wings I had crafted for them.  A month or so later, I hear that Ildiko is on a full page spread in Paris Vogue magazine.  They had done a full story on Burning Man.  I felt honored.. (and a little dishonored that there was no credit to either her nor I for offering the incredible content, and having them published in a fashion magazine was strange.. since these wings are worlds deeper than fashion, however, the context was suitable. I was flattered, ultimately.) This is the second time these feathered embodiments have made their way into a high fashion magazine, the first time being an issue of US Elle back in 2006.  They assumed I had been inspired by fashion designer, Alexander McQueen, who at the time, I had no idea who he was.  Misrepresented and a little irked at first from the context they had chosen to place me in, after I researched McQueen’s work, I relaxed into feeling rather complemented.   Here is the fabulous photo of the lovely Ildiko Cziglenyi taken by David Mushegain for Vogue magazine.

 

And just for fun, the first appearance, in US Elle Magazine.

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Return of the Bird Tribes

An incredible book by Ken Carey.  My friends have been trying to get me to read it for years.  It blew my mind… and my  heart.  How could so much of my soulful expression be already written down and published in a book?  Reading it, I saw so many of my heartsongs reflected back to me on the pages.  (not to mention the Sacred angelic BIRD embodiment I have been dancing, or that has been dancing me, for about seven years) Yes, we can go through this planetary healing in a beautiful easy way, free of mass suffering, as gentle as a blossom opening, like a heart finally surrendering to love.,, because that is what the healing truly is.  Our massive, collective Divine heart surrendering to the love of God, that is within us.  finally.

 

“You are the love of the Creator embodied in human form. Through the power of your love, you create.  You are here in the service of universal art to create beauty and to enjoy all that has been created.  The evocation of beauty and the description of truth: this is your purpose.  The purpose of life!  The very purpose of the universe.”  -Ken Carey

—word—

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Welcome to the SerpentFeathers Galleries

Alhambra (photo by Carey Thompson)

In the vast expansive landscapes of west Texas, Kathryn “Ka” June embarked upon her artistic journey discovering an avid interest in creative expression through various forms. After her schooling, she pursued the healing arts and worked as an energetic and massage therapist for 10 years. During this period of recognizing her gift in healing, she followed her passion to help others by learning to express beauty through visual and visceral means. Ka’s awakening led to the development of her innate talent for creating with nature’s gifts. Over many years she has honed the craft of merging animal medicines and earthen treasures into ceremonial tools, sacred costume and adornment. Wielding the brush and palette, Ka began to delve deep into her heart to channel powerful visions touching upon the hidden mysteries of life and love. Meanwhile, she developed her expressive talents in the performance arts. Ka has danced and offered her art at events and galleries internationally for the past seven years.

Kathryn June weaves her art through the multidimensional web with continuous threads of beauty and precision. As she paints visions of divine love, transformation, healing and rebirth, she also embodies these energies through dance and ceremony, bridging her prayers throughout the planes of existence and revealing universal interconnection. Dancing the angelic feathered rainbow serpent, Ka opens a portal of healing energy as an offering to every heart to receive and embrace the medicine of unconditional love. Her vision is to create a Divine reflection that gazes back into humanity, illuminating the beauty within the beholder, reminding us all of our innate ability to heal ourselves, heal each other, and heal our world.

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