Monday 18th December 2017

Creativity Soothes Me. 2017.102.

Creativity Soothes Me. 2017.102.

It’s been a while!

I used to post more about my creativity way back when I was blogging more frequently so I decided today was ideal for a creativity catch-up.

Those of you who read my blog regularly know that since 2013 art, in one shape or another, has helped me bridge some of life’s changes and given me a great ‘head space’ in which to become more mindful. I wrote about mindfulness here yesterday.

I am visually dominant then my next sense as a preference is kinaesthetic with aural (hearing and listening) third. I wrote about that here. It makes great sense to me then to enjoy art and using a myriad of different resources. From 2013 when I joined a group called DaisyYellowArt here, I have learned so much about media and then what I prefer to use. It has also meant I have, ahem, spent quite a lot of money over the years investing in artist-quality materials as student ones just do not ‘cut it.’

Making patterns on the page which may be large, small or somewhere in between gives me a creative freedom which I love. Although I do like to share on social media what I have made, the value for me is in the process. 

That is when I am at my most mindful and that is so good for my emotional health. When I went to hospital I took some art materials and an A4 book with some mandala outlines on quite a few pages and once I was in the ward (and not so knocked out from the huge surgery) I could lose myself in art each evening. I was a happy patient for sure and I did show some to the nurses as a way to connect.

Here’s a few I’ve made recently in my creative times. I will often say throughout the day, “I’m off to the art room” and it is a most pleasant and soothing place to be. I listen to some CDs often by some of my favourite teachers including Brene Brown, Pema Chodron and Tara Brach. It does soothe me for sure! I will sometimes draw mandalas and colour them in bed or sitting watching TV. I have a book with art materials that moves from room to room with me!!

What do you do to become more mindful?

Have you tried something new creatively recently?

Do you know what learning style is your preferred one? (hint: post link has place where you can check it!)


Linking here with Kylie Purtell for I Blog on Tuesday link up and here with Leanne for Lovin’ Life link on Thursdays.



I See Mandalas. 2017.73.

I See Mandalas. 2017.73.

It’s no secret I love mandalas. I have not been creating them as regularly in the past months as I have been drawn (geddit!) to pattern making.

Nevertheless, I still see mandalas and here are some I noticed in nature.

Do you see patterns and mandalas in nature?


Time for a link up called Lovin’ Life over here with Leanne and friends.

Joining with Sammie and friends here for The Ultimate Rabbit Hole on the weekend.



Nature’s Close Ups. 2017.70.

Nature’s Close Ups. 2017.70.

This garden is amazing at the moment.

So I captured it recently in close-up form.

I love these shapes, colours and textures.

What about you?



Joining my friend Sammie and bloggers here for The Ultimate Rabbit Hole on the weekend.








About My Mandalas. 366/343.

About My Mandalas. 366/343.

I’ve become so accustomed to making, viewing and noticing mandalas in ‘my world’ and the ‘world around me’ that I see them ALL the time.



Now,  I am not going to enter into any correspondence about mandalas and definitions because they are almost undefinable.

I think that is their beauty, wonder and gift for me. Some of the art from my mandala journey was written about here and then there is another here with the story of my starting to create them.

I sometimes use something from nature to inspire me and use an image to denote a mandala on my Instagram social media account. @denysewhelanblogs (it’s set at private for now, but ask for follow!).

I have posted a mandala example each day in Instagram and onto Facebook and Twitter. I also belong to a Mandalas group on Facebook where we share our photos of mandalas made and seen.

Since commencing mandala creation on July 1 I have completed at least one mandala a day. It is one of the purposes of my day. I just love it. I wake thinking of what I might create that day. Sometimes I do not post anything I have made that day because I see something in nature or elsewhere that is a mandala and I share that.

Over 175 Mandalas have now been made by me, and I love every one of them. I also love to share them. Recently my Dad who’d never heard of mandalas decided he loved them so much he asked for some for his unit. My older grandkids spied ones they liked last week and took them home. I asked facebook friends if they would like one (postage cost only!) and I sent 10 to new homes.

There is a lot of joy in the creation and the sharing and they have added to my mindfulness and creativity every single day.

In 2017 I will be continuing the practice. Try to stop me!

Each of these is on A3 size quality art paper and are originals by me. I used a variety of media. I was happy to see them go to new owners. It’s part of the joy of mandalas.

If you follow me on IG or are a Facebook friend or would like mandala I create in 2017, let me know. I love to share them as I said.

Thanks for your support too! I get lots of likes when I post my mandalas.


This is a first..and I think will not be the last. Posting under 2 categories here on the blog!

And I am joining Vanessa here for #archivelove on Friday 27 January 2017.


Two Photo Challenges In November! 366/303.

Two Photo Challenges In November! 366/303.

I have taken part in photo challenges before.

I have remembered (mostly!) to post the photos on Instagram and Facebook and Twitter.

Then I got out of the habit because I have been blogging each day and doing my art, like index-card-a-day for 2 months along with some (!!) mandalas.


I am going to add more to my day….whilst get ready to take something away from my day.

See my post tomorrow!!

dreamstime_16701599 confused

One challenge is here, with Deb and other creatives.



The second challenge has been running for quite some time. In fact, years…and is a very popular one around the world.

Initiated by Chantelle over here on her blog, it is the Fat Mum Slim Photo-A-Day.


Do you join in Photo Challenges?

Which ones?

I hope you have a creative weekend!


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Joining the lovely bloggers, Sammie, Karin and Paula who are part of the Ultimate Rabbit Hole.


Mandalas Come In All Sizes. 366/289.

Mandalas Come In All Sizes. 366/289.

When I made the commitment to creating 100 Mandalas a day for 100 Days I thought I would be creating them similarly. It turned out that even making mandalas deepens the creative thinking process. I then extended myself and learned even more.

Here are some of those for this creative post on Saturday.



Choosing a colour palette that is not a favourite one.



Painting a rainbow adding paint mask then taking it off to reveal mandala



Simple little floral patterns repeated on a small sheet of paper.



Using stamps and making this fun mandala about a journey of sorts.


Stars and rewards based mandala channeling my inner teacher having fun.



Almost the end of ICAD season I had plenty of index cards and used only gel pens for this.



It started as hearts and the message then did its thing. Using colour combos I might not normally choose.



I LOVED thinking this one up as it went along. Based on the beach colours I love, added the words in ever changing sizes. Outlined in gel pen over the painted letters.



Started in the middle and then grew itself. Colours again were limited and shapes grew as they do!



Made on the table here. Bit blurry but it’s my beach finds mandala.

I wonder if you have started seeing mandalas where you do these days?

I see them everywhere.

Do have a go at creating one. It’s the best fun.


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Joining Sammie, Karin and Paula for The Ultimate Rabbit Hole here this Saturday.



Stages of A Mandala.366/282.

Stages of A Mandala.366/282.

Today I have reached Day 100 of the 100 Mandalas Challenge where I promised myself to create or curate a mandala a day for 100 days!

I did it!

Before I determined to do the challenge, I started with a guidebook and once I learned the very basics, I let my creative and intuitive mind flow.

Making these has made a difference to my life.

I have written about them before as part of my Creativity and Art categories.

Check those posts out if you want to know more!

They are mindful to make and I will be continuing to create. I am not committing to one a day though as I intend to get more into the meanings of mandalas throughout history and integrating the knowledge personally.

I am grateful to the community here who has supported me in my challenge.

It’s been great having cheerleaders!!

Here is a snapshot of the progress of a recent mandala.



The design in black pen evolves after I have made the various sizes of circles using a compass (I ended up buying a large one) and then I take my time and consider, from my art materials, which texture and colours I think will work. As I am left-handed, I tend to work right to left (opposite for most!) so I do not smudge my work and also turn the page (this one was A3) around the do the design and colouring. This one took a couple of days but only working an hour or so at a time because my left hand has arthritis! Wonder why!!

This is my ‘appreciation mandala’ to you, dear readers and those who follow me on Instagram too.


Thanks again everyone!


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Glad to see Sammie is back as of last week and joining friends here for The Ultimate Rabbit Hole.


Mindful Mandala Making. 366/268.

Mindful Mandala Making. 366/268.

Since 1 July I have designed, curated or found a mandala which I have photographed and added to my social media feed. As of today, there are only 14 mandalas to be completed to finish the 100 days’ challenge.

I’ve learned something about mandalas and myself in this time and that came as a surprise.

Making a mandala is mindful.

Being mindful for me is meditative.

This is good for my inner well-being which has been a bit wobbly for the past few years.

One of the things I have found is that when I truly concentrate I am ‘in the moment’ and when I decided to make the most intricate mandala I could make, I was indeed!

This one, in black pen, is all my design and on a large A3 sheet.


The second shot is of a close up.


Later, before the challenge is done, I will have coloured it.

Added: I began colouring this last night and found a line needed adding….can you see it here? 

It has taken me time over a few days to create it and i know the colouring will be similar. For someone who is usually a ‘fast finisher’ this demonstrates that I am learning to be more patient and let the creativity flow.

Are you a ‘fast finisher?’

Do you prefer to take your time to ‘perfect’ what ever you create?

I know I am not a perfectionist per se but I also know that I value a product to be proud of and pay tribute to the process too.

How has your creative week been?

And do recall creativity is more, much more than art, craft, writing, performing and music!


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Joining the Ultimate Rabbit Hole here this week with The Geeky Shopaholic and also where this link up appears too with Karin at Calm to Conniption along with Shari from  at Good Food Week.