large black loopy line with a yellow centre in a sea of trellis blue with magenta square acrylic painting by phoebe thomasson art

Art, The Great Disruptor

Art is my meditation
My medication
It anneals my soul
Enlivens my spirit
And informs my intellect
As to where I am
In my process
Towards enlightenment
For that, really
Is all that matters;
The cessation of suffering
And the opening
Of the doors to Nirvana.

What you see here
Is the result of that process;
That striving towards
Something greater
That release of pressure
And the relief of understanding.


large black loopy line with a yellow centre in a sea of trellis blue with magenta square acrylic painting by phoebe thomasson art
Before Infinity

Part of the growth process must involve self-analysis. The above prose poetry is what emerged when I analysed my relationship to my art and my creative process.

What it means to me is what drives me, and this is an important understanding for anyone looking to employ the techniques of disruption to their life, business, project or self development.

For more on Disruption and innovation see Whitney Johnson’s book “Disrupt Yourself“. I highly recommend it if you are looking for positive change in any area of your life.

Art Projects

Space Beings & Imaginary Friends

The Human Boundary

Supernatural: Surreal Shapes of Nature


Follow me on Twitter @phoebethomasson



Have You Met The Barefoot Doctor? You Should!

Barefoot Doctor MMMMM

statue-of-taoist-master.jpg (338×450)

A long time ago and far away – around 658BC in Hunan Province to be precise – The Duke of Wen went to see Lao Tsu, purported great grandaddy of the Taoist way, and said, “Lao, your reputation for supreme wisdom goes before you and I have traveled far to seek your advice. I have conquered much territory and have established peace in the lands I rule. But inner peace eludes me. I have meditated. I have done Tai Chi but still it eludes me. What is the secret?” …… more

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Zen Yellow

abstract painting in yellow and black by phoebe thomasson uk artist

Zen Yellow is the first in a series of paintings called One Hundred Paintings. I’ve set a mammoth task for myself which I needed to focus my energies on exploring limitation, boundaries and to see what happens. It’s always interesting to work with self-imposed limits and it’s not my usual style but I’m loving the process so far.

There is something about the simplicity of this one that really does it for me. I’ve been a wannabe minimalist for a while now but my life is a testament to clutter (all interesting!) so it’s almost a study or a meditation for me to understand the concept behind ‘less is more’. It’s living at the foot of our stairwell right now but is up for sale below if you’re interested in collecting art.

Zen Yellow

Zen Yellow is the start

The centre of everything

Pure radiance

corralled in bold defiance.

There is nothing undone

about the simplicity

of that moment which holds

only now.

I sit at the centre

undying unyielding to time

or memory’s pall

as Buddha sits

eternal on lotus

and moon seat.

I am that which

is the centre of

the Peace of the world.

Simplicity, elegant art

so rare in times

of abundance spilling over

into a thousand rooms.

I long simply to be


and real

as a dew drop

upon spring lawn

reflecting the world

but not full with it.

Zen Yellow


the emptiness

that is filled

with light.

5th April 2015


Minimalism & Meditation

From my series “Art & Healing”. Today I talk about how meditation can serve us both creatively and personally in every dimension of our lives.

Watch time: 5.26

Photo Credit: Michael Lorenzo

Why Practice Yoga?

Beyond the obvious physical fitness benefits, what are we actually doing when we practice yoga? What is yoga for and why is it good for us? Here are a few pointers as to what it’s all about. Let these thoughts be a launch pad for your own practice. Your own experience will of course be unique and this is why it is best to try it for yourself!

Establishing a safe inner space

Sometimes we need to retreat from the world for a bit. It’s OK to use external entertainment for a while, but if we really want to create deep and lasting change, an internally oriented practice is the most effective. Yoga can help to center us while we traverse our internal landscape. Once we know what to expect from our inner world we can mold it to our own needs. A side effect of the process is that we will never need to look elsewhere for the comfort and solace we sometimes crave.

* Connecting with our greater sense of self: once we awaken the thirst for a more expansive way of thinking, yoga can take us into a deeper more profound relationship with ourselves. The destination we are seeking is the vast experience of nature. We can eventually transcend our sense of ‘limited’ personal self as we connect with blissful awe to the cosmic reality upon which our lives are truly built.

* Creating strong neural pathways for an enhanced relaxation response: the nature of the human brain is plastic. It is constantly moulding and adapting to environmental pressures until we stop demanding change. This is good news for us as we are soon able to create new neural pathways with consistent effort in our chosen direction. The ability to relax is like any habit and strengthens with repeated use.

* Increasing the flow of vitality through our muscles and joints:

[ ]Energy tends to have a sticky quality that can get snagged easily if the channels are not smooth and free-flowing
[ ]Our modern lives are one of the culprits for creating energy snags
[ ]Sitting in chairs all the time instead of sitting on the floor at least some of the time tightens us up
[ ]Change is a complex process and demands courage and some knowledge of where we are headed
[ ]Yoga helps us to let go into the momentum of the flow
[ ]As we flow more freely, our energy will become more dynamic
[ ]Allowing free-flowing energy promotes top conditions for health
[ ]No one is immune from the effects of moving their body in a way that resembles our ancestral movements
[ ]Yoga makes us more aware of our bodies
[ ]It’s easy to see why people become pleasantly addicted to the results and take it up with such fervour
[ ]Keeping it going as a practice can help us be more disciplined in other areas of our life
[ ]Practice demands controlled severity at times and yielding softness at others
[ ]Practical application of select styles of yoga is highly energizing and also promotes restful sleep
[ ]Eating moderately and enhanced will power around food ensures better success rates with dietary requirements
[ ]Our awareness increases tenfold and we learn to share respectfully what we have learned.

* Releasing tension and letting go of unhelpful states of mind: We can move swiftly through uncomfortable states of mind like depression and anger. The focus demanded by yoga will help us shift out of the thinking patterns responsible.

* Training our mind towards increased focus and discipline: When we learn the joy of repetition we know we have somewhere reliable to turn when things are tough, or a great channel for expression of our whole gamut of feelings and emotions. We can really learn to recognise the energies at play, and our awareness will soon pick up on what’s going on in other areas of our lives. It is training our focus and making us more available to ourselves.

In Summary…

Strong, disciplined people are products of strong disciplined minds. Fortunately for us the mind is forever responsive to training and the forming of new habits. If we view the mind as the search engine of the brain, just like it’s counterpart, the computer, we know we can always get updates, upgrades, change search engine providers and customize all the settings. This leaves our limitations in the hands of our creativity. The more creative we are, the further we can travel into transformation.

Seamless: A Revealing Journey…A Poem

photo credit CLUC

I just awoke from a dream….not seconds.ago…and this was the journey that I saw…

Like travellers we strode
Cross valley
And mountain ridge
Like gritty royal characters
The peasants we did pass
We looked up from our toil
To see the royal throng
We stopped with wonder
As we saw ourselves go by

We were transvestites on the beach
Hollering with love and confusion
Dressed in our cross referenced illusion
We looked up to see the punks
Running towards us through the sand
We were charging skins red raw from battle
Worn with tattooed sides and red blood
Running in veins so wild
As we flew towards our quarry
Till we saw the whites of their eyes
And stopped….amazed at seeing

We were landed gentry
Enjoying feasting off the fat of the land
I took her hand
Silken gown flowing down
Not far removed from the royalty
Of yesteryear
You were my servant when I spied you near
I looked up to see my lord’s eyes
Over serving caviare and scones did I then
Come to realize
There was something of me
Behind those wine soaked eyes

I was buccaneer in my office with my phone
Leather case now replace breeches
But my pirate nature with me
Has eternally flown
I steal your money
You’re women your rent
I saw in my whore something new
A her blouse I tore asunder
I saw the thunder in his heart
As wantonly I took my legs
Apart at the seams you took me there
There was something in that
Piratical stare
I almost choked on my red soaked
Lips when I saw my child
My former bliss
In your eyes I am your mother
Your sister
Your lover

We all came round the corner
Up the street to where Goliath’s meet and he was gin-soaked
Riding a horse of Gothic
He was waiting
But not waiting
The witch and the warden
the characters all came to him and he nodded
Off to the egg with his weighty smile
Revealed from the door
Those eyes once more…

Sat in the space pod
Was myself; it was me from the outside!
He smiled
The circle complete
Ourselves we did meet…

Though my poetry’s bad
Such a night we all had.


This poem is alluding directly to Andy Weir’s short story called ‘The Egg’

Photo Credit CLUC

Handling the new moon with grace

The new moon. The dark moon. What, if anything does this signify to you?

To me it engenders the Yin energies of our cycle and is, in essence, a time of emptying and letting go. Being more responsive and yielding are the character signatures of the Yin side of our nature. After studying my own behaviour at this time I believe I have found the key energies representative of this period.

The skill is in learning to express the positive aspects of things as there is always a choice. For that we must acknowledge our own feelings toward moon phases and anything else for that matter! This is an invitation for you to dig in and excavate your own truths. It’s aim is to stimulate self inquiry.

These are my personal findings offered in the spirit of sharing that you may uncover your unique approach…

This is a collection of intuitive guidelines designed to be used around the week of the new moon, both before and after. It will soon expand as you add your own understandings. I am very interested to hear how they work for you and what happens when you try my suggestions.

The Dark Moon Protocol
(five day period)

It would be better to go with the flow at these times and not resist the desire to try new and refreshing things but only if they are part of the natural course of the flow. Now is not the time to force anything. Gently coax things and be prepared to let things start and stop sporadically if they need to.

Now can be a great time to make dynamic changes but not by inputting more information. By sitting in contemplation we can bring forth the seeds of what has already been sown. Now is the time for gestation of new ideas. We must plant and water those seeds and warm them with our kind attention.

Now is the time for releasing output. Favor writing over reading. Sitting and writing out thoughts and lists of things that are running around our head is a good way to clear the decks for the new growth coming. It is best to follow the urge to purge at this time. It is a time of preparation. You don’t need to do the list, just make it. Don’t leave any area unaccounted for.

Releasing things on any level is a great dark moon practice. Taking old things to the charity shop, allowing emotional issues to drop and forgiving our friends are three examples. Let go of the need to fill up the mind but instead turn to the body and make sure it is getting all the nutritional support needed. Also make time for nourishment of the spirit. Now is not the time to skimp on activities that nurture and support your growth.

Engaging in gentle physical activity and being peaceful is favourable to study and work related projects. Anything that brings peace and tranquillity is reflecting the nature of the moon at this time. Stay well hydrated and eat for health and comfort. Now is not the time for fasting or regimes that favour austerity.

Music at this time should be relaxed and positive. Think Cafe Del Mar or Buddha Bar. Resist the urge to thrash around or overstimulate your energies with Rock or Metal; leave that for the Full moon!!

The Buddhist meditation on Emptiness would be a very good practice at this time as the essence of emptiness is strongly apparent.

Key Words


heavenly bodies

I love to meditate and I got into Buddhism in the past few years therefore the Buddha shape (and the lotus) has found it’s way into many a painting. However, I always used to paint big fat Venus of Willendorf goddess shapes so really it could be either. The sun and the moon are obvious motifs and together they form a kind of cosmic trinity. I adore this painting for the layering I’ve managed to achieved. My inspiration for this was Raina Gentry. Go check! But do come back; I’ll be jealous if you don’t!!! 😉

Copyright © Phoebe Thomasson 2014

What purpose do we need?

Today is one of those days. Today I feel bereft of an anchor or a purpose. I check my phone. Ah, the moon is nearly dark. The dark moon is always a confusing one for me; so used as I am, to being ‘filled up’ with things. I don’t feel panicked about it. Not this time anyway. So what’s changed? I can sense the emptiness coming with the approaching moon differently today. I feel somehow safe in its presence as if it were a benevolent friend sitting with me. It tells me not to worry and sitting in the feeling of emptiness I am aware of this befriending process. This is a new one, yet there is nothing new here at all! My mind is looking for a latch, or a hook upon which to hang this day, but the hook and the door indeed, have all but gone! Gone where? No-where. Emptiness is like that. Nothing has disappeared, yet its mere appearance is no longer manifesting before me. Confused? Don’t be.

It is no more confusing than a dew drop evaporating from the petal of a flower
Gone back to its source from whence it came, merely changing form, not essence

So what do I do in this state of being?…or no being? I really don’t know who I am or what I am doing in that potentially aimless day-to-day kind of way that could manifest into a depression or even simple malaise. So what gives?

Here is what my Buddha tells me:

Accept whatever feelings or states arrive to the best of your ability and allow the shifting of your mind to be in a positive direction. Be mindful of your emotions and mental winds and do not allow your state to sink. All is well. Trust. This is the time of clearing. Everything must evaporate into its native state before it can rebuild itself afresh. The process is indeed instigated by the passage of the moon in her phases and affects the very water molecules of your physical being. You could call this a body mood. It is beyond your control so do not try to save yourself from it! There is nothing to save! You are pure Buddha nature; at one with the light. Pure vibration. The release of who you think you are should feel refreshing to you and yet you spend so much time fearing this ‘no-self’. This too is part of the process of awakening. Awakening to your true nature is like a butterfly waking up and thinking it is still a caterpillar. The cocoon is gone. Your wings are fully formed. It’s time to learn to fly. This IS your purpose! Flight and the feelings of being alive. It is so simple and this is why you resist. You are addicted to complication. Let it go. It will be safe when you do. Peace.

That’s nice to know.
Thanks Inner Buddha Nature.
I am what I am. Simple!
What I do is what I feel like has meaning for me or is necessary for survival. This is the simplicity that brings mental peace and joy. Looking for more meaning than this at this point in time is clearly insane!

Today I wish for myself and for you, the grace to accept where we are and where we are not, and the release of our limited self-identity.
Fly on!


Photo Credit Kelly Boesch

Want More Time? Stuck In a Rut? Then Slow Down…

There’s something about my approach to painting that I have only recently understood and it very clearly serves to explain why I’ve been frustrated and frequently blocked, even when I’ve been prolific. For ages I’ve thought my paintings suck, or lack, or just don’t quite do it for me. I’d like to share this with you because it’s a common problem with lots of areas in our lives. Apply my theory to any area in your life and see what happens.

Here’s my theory…

It’s not what you are doing It’s HOW you are doing it!

Now that may not be a major revelation for you if you are a careful person who instinctively takes their time but for me, when I discovered I was simply rushing, this was my moment of breakthrough. Ok, I knew why I was rushing; because I don’t have much time to paint and I’m trying to fill a canvas or whatever and get a painting ‘done’.

What I had forgotten was the process. I had become goal oriented…oh how strange!

Just like the vast majority of my life I had unwittingly transferred my frantic search for ‘more’ to my creative life as well!

You know the scene…rushing through the boring jobs to get to the one you love and then when you get to that important one you really give a damn about you are so strung up you botch it by overworking a piece, going too far, too quickly, your mind completely out of the moment and in the idealized future when….oh dear, another unsatisfying result which leads to further feelings of frustration and reinforcing the ‘I’m crap’ belief system.

Sound familiar? Well it does to me.

Recently I’ve been doing a lot of guided meditation during my chill time with the help of a few inspired apps like Insight Timer instead of reading or searching on eBay. This is paying dividends in my attention span and my ability to choose thoughts. Its been a while since I rushed headlong through a painting. I’ve been close but the process has been loosened out a bit from my previous habits and there is a bit more time to choose the next move. As a result my work is starting to deepen, and this pleases me immensely.

Ok, it’s been frustrating to have to wait so long to actually paint something, simply because I am taking longer to get round to it, but again, the quality over quantity bug is starting to itch me more than the one that just wants more, at any cost. I get the feeling we can all be a bit fixated on the more and not the less, so it’s a bit of a minimalist thing I suppose. I guess you could say it’s minimalism in action, not in stuff terms or to put it another way, simply pacing our activities away from more to less.

It’s not just our most important creative pursuits that need pacing. Due to experiencing ME/CFS for the past few years, I’ve had to learn how to pace everything! Literally…

My walking, my talking, my breathing, my eating, my cleaning, even… well you get the picture! Even getting dressed used to get me wound up in the morning and falling over my jean legs; I was always trying so desperately to get somewhere, but where?

Somewhere Else!

The thing is, the grass really does look greener on the other side because we’re not standing in it looking down at the gaps! In psychological terms when we are rushing we are living in non-acceptance of the present. Why is this? Why is the present moment such a hard place to be?

Our culture for one encourages the vision to always be scanning for bigger, better, brighter…it actively fuels our discontent.

Indeed, many a time I have observed myself walking through town scanning, window shopping, desiring, planning my next spend. It doesn’t matter how much we have, the habit of spending as just one example is indicative of our collective inability to slow down. Yeah, there is also the background pressure to keep the economy going, but this is rhetoric. We are the economy! If we slowed down to a human pace and not that of a machine, the economy would adjust. But lets face it, I’m being utopian here and humans are no more going to slow down than I’m going to become Buddha in the next five minutes.

Wait a minute. …

But I could you know! I could become a Buddha in an instant if I really believed it was possible, and so could you. Likewise, it’s as hard to imagine we are even able to slow down, but I’ve seen it is possible and probably necessary for lots of reasons that we all know. Stress for one.

What if we spent a whole day watching our breath, watching our thoughts, watching our endless list of needs and desires play themselves on loop. What would happen if we could see clearly?

What if we became mindful, ethical, peaceful, slllllooooooowwww down just enough to take care of our creations and most importantly, our relationships, for they might just be the most important things we ever create.

Breathe in. Breathe out.

‘What if……………………?’