Saturday, December 28, 2013

Actions Speak Louder Than Words

The above quote I put up in 2006, I still have pinned to my bulletin board in front of me right now, albeit a bit faded from sun exposure.  

(I'm just recording this moment for me, so if you aren't interested, leave now).

WOOOOWWW!!!  I will never be able to describe this overwhelming sensation I am experiencing right now; I get tears filling my eyes just thinking about it.

My dad gave me a tear drop pendant necklace after my near fatal struggles about 10 years ago, telling me this is for tears of joy, and not for the hardships in life nor lack of hope.  I didn't really know what that felt like, but I can tell you, my tears (as I bawl away) right now are of joy and pure grateful appreciation.  It just fills my heart.  

I understand only I can fully grasp the enormity of this milestone; the last day of work in 2013.  You nor anyone else may well let it go over your/their head(s), but I am fully aware of my own achievements and the weight of the meaning it holds for me personally.  My parents, my brother, and Patti know as they were there with me through death and back.

This is what's on the wall above my desk now.

I realize that revisiting, and taking the HUGE risk of making the move to Tokyo was something that I HAD TO DO, for me;
-to realize my potential.
-to overcome challenges.
-to challenge and push my limits.
-to face my fears.
-relive and face demons from past (probably the scariest and hardest thing to do, as the last time I was here, 13 years ago, I left many unresolved and unfinished loose ends.  I left completely shattered, lost, ill beyond words, dying, hopeless, and embracing death, and that was only at the start of the decent).
-to prove to myself that I can and could.  
Probably the most difficult challenge I've put myself through, I knew in my gut that I was ready when I decided to make the transition.  

BUT I DID IT.  And if I were to die right now, I can completely and confidently say I don't regret any of it, and lived a life worth living, I fought the fight and survived, a better individual.  

This is a milestone.  ALL OF IT was WORTH EVERY MOMENT.  This is where I get my exuberance, heart and drive, an outlook to life that is special to me that I hold close to my heart.  

I am an INTENSE person, I know, and some people can't handle it, but I know no other way to be.  It is the FULL life experience.  *I'm bawling as I've got a big smile on my face, oh the contradiction!, the story of my life... darn Gemini*

This feeling, the overflowing sensation of gratitude, honor, and pure appreciation, I am lost for words!  Thank you.  

"oh my gosh, I can't believe I did it!!!", I am proud of myself (^_^), and I don't say this often or acknowledge it, ever.

I wish I had someone to share this with in person, but I shall cry my tears of joy, embrace it, and BE in the moment.

I believed in my heart and soul that I did the right thing, and I wasn't mistaken.  This is proof enough, !!!ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS!!!  I can't stress this enough.

I don't lie when I say; I DETEST

LOL!  But, the year ahead is full of more trials and tribulations, there are uncertainties, and I know what I'm getting into.  More challenges to face, risks to take, mistakes to make, lessons to be learned, so many idiosyncrasies, and flaws ; such is life, an adventure worth living.  Regardless of this milestone, I will be the same person tomorrow that I was today, consistence/persistence/perseverance matter to my well being, although, definitely experiencing life as I described in a post prior (even when I appear calm and composed); in 'double time, and in a much more unconventional and large capacity.  I probably go through what one individual goes through within the 2 years in 2 months' in technicolor images:)!

I do what is needed to take care of myself.  My high school years growing up were spent in the major hubs of Tokyo (Shibuya/Roppongi/Shinjuku/Harajuku/Hiroo/etc.), I'm enjoying another side of the city that's new to me:)  I've been there, done that, I still do that once in a while and have lots of fun, but I'm at a different place in my life now.  Come along with me and lets go explore some more:)

This piece I created is in Australia.

Thank you, truly,

Facebook: (message, and tell me why and who)





Monday, December 9, 2013

A Mixed Bag of Nuts!

How is everyone feeling today!?  Coming to you from a place of genuine love and joy, this afternoon I was sent this youtube video; an interview with Paul Smith, that I identified deeply.  There are so many points he touch upon that resonated with me, so when you have some free time, please do check it out.

As I was ironing my shirts looking out the window with the leaves turning a spectrum of nickel azo yellow to green gold, with kids running around playing on the playground I was struck with this thought; each individual in life are ultimately 'alone' in the world, searching for an existential belonging, of meaning, purpose, reason, and love.  I truly appreciate these moments of clarity where I can BE, especially in such densely populated cities where stores try to out do each other with Christmas lights, trying to reach holiday targets, parties, constant social media and other devices connected, work, stresses, past scars and memories that need mending and/or treasuring.  

For some reason today I opted to listen to my classical playlist, as I felt it fitting and calmed my intense and sensitive nature.  I actually didn't plan on writing today, so this is completely improvised, if it comes across a bit disjointed I take full responsibility.  

Also, on my mind, what of being an introvert in a world that rewards extroversion?  Surprising as it may be to you, I am in fact very introverted and can be somewhat shy!  I observe, listen, and take in the full experiences, think and form my own opinions and thoughts (which can take some time and not always fully formed as I voice myself, which I'm often frustrated).  I've been brought up to be socially fluid, fitting into any social situation, but small talk can become unsatisfying after a while, do you ever find this?  How do I deal with introversion, I don't... I've come to terms with it, but give myself challenges, take risks, and put myself out there regardless.  A bit of a speed freak in those aspects, I guess (and not the amphetamine sort, lol).  I see these opposing anomalies within myself as fun games with which to challenge, discover, learn and gain proof.  I enjoy it and it keeps me constantly interested and interesting.  

Wow, this is truly a mixed bag of nuts today.  But such is my mind.  So naturally, next; 
Men, do women need or want?  I've gotta say 'want'.  I don't necessarily 'need' a man to live, but I definitely 'want' to share my life with someone, don't you?  (Obviously, as I speak it can go any which way in terms of sexes without discrimination).  Although I can't say for certain I won't 'need' a guy when there is a spider, esp for one who is a little arachnophobic... LOL!  Usually I get up the nerve with some... MAJOR, trepidation.  HAHAHA~  Men have that 'male-ness' that being female, I don't have, and I LOVE that about guys.  I just respect and appreciate that human aspect in the bigger picture of things.

Anyways it is starting to get a bit darker out, and I need to go cook some supper.  My winter clothes from Canada are finally starting to come in handy!  Stay warm and cozy:)  I hope I provided some entertainment to those who actually got through the blog post, hahaha~  Well, I enjoyed writing it, so, as always, sending positive wishes your way!!!

Oh and feeling a little festive, on my toes I've got nail polish by Ciate in 'Sharp Tailoring' with an accent of Kanebo Lunasol nail polish in 06 'Shining Gold'


*and yes, this is me being FESTIVE:)*  ("c'mon, it's chic!" says me.)


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Sunday, November 24, 2013

The Unconventional Path

I need to de-clutter my mind before I do more writing for work, if you don't like reading a bit of ramble, you might want to leave now, although there maybe some pearls of wisdom in some of my thoughts and experiences you can relate.

How do you handle transitions in life?  

Realization #1, I know when I am ready for any huge transition in life, and I do so accordingly, BUT as I move and take on new challenges, take risks, try to smoothly incorporate into my new lifestyle with the many hurdles that come with change, I become vulnerable and there in lies my weakness.  
Stress, being tired, forgetting to take meds in the AM (as the ones I take at night can have a temporary amnesic side effect), and working too hard puts me on auto pilot, making me less grounded.  I HATE this ungrounded feeling as it makes me not my usual self; I get more emotional, come across needy, unsure, doubtful, and insecure.  I just end up doing and going and feeling, a blurry thing, whereafter my brain catches up and tries to rationalize.  When rationalizing and owning the experience, I often kick my self and second guess my actions (as I'm already feeling a bit vulnerable).  

Realization #2, during these times, I'm usually the last one to notice that I need my own space and time, to work through it and gain firm footing.  But after making mistakes, trial and error, and making a huge fool out of myself, I learn FAST and CHANGE the ways in which are unhealthy.  I do come out stronger and that much wiser for the unfortunate/fortunate circumstances.  Those whom I come in contact at these moments I truly feel for, as they've just encountered me dealing with my own 'scrap' (fight between, transitions, emotion, thought, life).  IF they stick around, they've experienced the worst of me and I will be forever grateful and respect their understanding, heart and broadmindedness.  I acknowledge my imperfections and am always trying to improve upon shortcomings.

Realization #3, I tend to do things double time, and in a much more unconventional and large capacity.  I probably go through what one individual goes through within the 2 years in 2 months (yup, it's only been 2 months since I started working in Tokyo).  This is the story of my life, I am unexpected and unconventional (imagine my parent's faces, every time, 'here we go again', LOL).  I've come to terms with the fact that balance is hard to come by, and I'd rather have the FULL life experience, nothing less.
Sonic the Hedgehog... 

Realization #4, I am far more capable than I allow myself to admit.  Discipline, determination, hard work, standards, expectations, I've mastered and have been ingrained in me since I could remember.  BUT positive encouragement, support, kindness, forgiveness, acceptance, and acknowledgement to the SELF have always been a challenge, although I've come such a long way from the years I lived without hope, looked only to death for solutions, and strived for unattainable and irrational perfection.  When I think of those times, I know and believe from the bottom of my heart that anything/one is possible and capable of change.  I'm actually not much of an optimist, I am optimistic, but I come from a very scientific, research, and analytical place of reason and proof, where aspects are constantly challenged, tried, tested, and resolved.  

Realization #5, I'm far more driven and independent than I imagined.  There are some solid goals I 'will' reach.  I have direction and vision, also dream colorfully big.

Realization #6, I don't hold back, and although I may make a fool of myself, I make mistakes, fuck up extravagantly, I take responsibility for them, and learn, BUT I NEVER HAVE REGRETS (my grandfather's motto was to live without regrets).  Throw all the cards out on the table, see where they fall, deal with it honestly and completely.  Don't get me wrong, I still get heart ache, and 'duh, what the fuck was I thinking' thoughts, and 'I really messed up this time', but these drive me to be better, and more equipped in the future.  Everyone deserves second chances.
Human, yes.  Life, yes.  An adventure, yes.  Make mistakes, yes.  Learn, YES.  Try, always.  Imperfect, definitely!  IM OKAY WITH IT (^_^), yes.  Do I fear death, no.  Anything is possible.  


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Sunday, October 27, 2013

Calm in the City with a little Spark

The little moments that make you happy, what are they?

Inundated with deadlines, meetings, events, and errands, life full of exciting adventures can feel at times wearing, but I find the most joy in these moments of awareness that help to recharge and restore some equilibrium back in to my endurance pushing schedule.  

See, today I woke a bit early, a crow kept 'barking' outside my window; instead of thinking "shut the f*** up!", I was pleased with the existence of wildlife in a built up city.  I finished getting ready and put some music on, calm, quiet, peaceful before the rush-and-go at work; it's like being at the starting line on blocks before a 100 meter sprint, or warming up at the ballet barre before everyone else starts trailing into the studio.  You collect your thoughts, think of the steps you need to take to complete tasks during the day ahead, acknowledge the positive steps as well as crap ones you've taken, and just BE; it may sound a bit new-age-y but it's not.  I'm talking about being in the moment, being aware and checking in with yourself whenever you get the chance.  Living in the city can be exhausting and draining, you need some semblance of balance and calm.  If you can't get it within where else will you find it; in alcohol, in partying, chasing girls or guys, shopping, etc?  Don't get me wrong, those things are fun, I like doing those things too (although I'm not sure about chasing guys/girls), but they are a different kind of release and self restoration.  Maybe I'm just BORING, hahaha~  that word doesn't exist in my life, I'm never bored, as I entertain myself when I have time.  

Being human, and an individual you gotta appreciate all the levels, dimensions, and depth!  Can you believe!?  I LOVE IT!  These slight of energy and aura translate on a daily basis and touch those which you come in contact.  I hope to bring a little bit of sunshine or heart to another individual in the busy city:)  How else can we coexist?  

I'm feeling appreciative, forever grateful, grounded and quite alright~  I think that's a good thing, especially amongst all the challenge, craziness, and emotional, psychological, physical transitions I've experienced recently.

So, I'm writing this post this morning before work to BE:)  Sharing my love.  

I've also got devil horns with little feathery details for halloween this year; not a whole costume or anything but it makes me grin a not so innocent grin!!!  HA!!!  That is another occasion all together, right now I've got to focus on a whole lot of other things, but the playful side of myself always in reach.   

I've seen some costumes around the city, I like the free flowing self expression, keep it coming:)  


Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Heart Broken in Tokyo

Okay, so I'm going to be a bit raw and more honest than usual in this post, I usually don't speak too much about that which is personal (ie. relationships), but I thought I would share for my own sake and for those who maybe going through similar situations; not about the relationship but about being heart broken in Tokyo.

Mackenzie Thorpe

I've given myself a one week timeline to really sulk, feel, cry, get angry, and literally be a mess (to a certain extent) after a long term relationship.  Its a roller coaster ride of emotions.  And NOTHING feels more lonely and claustrophobic than being in Tokyo when you are going through this, I can't emphasize this enough, as you've gotta get your ass out of bed in the early hours get ready and take the subway walk your way to work, sit at work, work your ass off, be exhausted, in an environment where you can't speak the language 100%, you've left everything you know that is safe, leaving your little treasure of a Cairn Terrier named Clover whom I miss like nothing else as she was there after my last major break up (relationship of 7 years, when I had just gotten her as a tiny 10 week old puppy) and has been through over 4 moves and so many life struggles. 
The first day, you end up going on the train realizing after 10 stops that you are going in the wrong freakin' direction, so you trek back, while you've got tears filling your eyes.  You end up leaving your iphone in the fridge, or running into strangers in the street as you are in this strange fugue.  It sucks big time!  

I also want to mention that I'm usually a strong individual (although I may not even notice at times), I've survived and fought/fight for life, so naturally I keep things to myself and don't share these things with others, trying to deal with them in my own time and ways that are healthy and work for me.  BUT, I'm in a completely new space, new environment, without my studio where I can express myself, paint, draw, etc to my hearts desire, or give myself a ballet class as space is very lacking in Tokyo, nor journal as I'm usually nodding off at the end of the day due to exhaustion.  Things are just so far removed that anything remotely shocking is a tidal wave.  

Although I must admit on the contrary, anything positive is that much more sweeter and appreciated.  

I'm actually quite surprised with how I have handled this though, I'm hanging on and am using the negative to propel me at work and keep me going.  I've learnt through all of my experiences to USE your inner turmoil into something constructive and more beautiful.  You work through it and use it, there is no other way.  I believe the way you live your life and perspective are art forms in themselves, much as there is art and creativity in business.  I also believe you are capable to love even deeper next time around.  

Yes, I feel that no one's ever going to love me again, who would be interested in me, I'm not good looking enough, and all those things that go through your mind post break up; but rationally I know it to be untrue.  I just hang in there, put one foot in front of the other and keep moving forwards.

I think other than losing a close one due to death, heart break can be almost as taxing.  Stick a new corporate environment, in Tokyo on top and you've got yourself a shit sandwich!  I'm just kidding.  There are positives that come out of these situations and I'm sure I will gain from this as I have in the past.  I'm just please I get to be around amazing works of art as I journey, and am learning a hell of a lot along the way.


It gets better.  Hang in there.  NEVER GIVE UP.  There is always hope and love to be shared.

Thanks for listening, I needed to get that out of me, anything that helps, do it!  


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

HOW TO: Move to Tokyo in a Month

I’m typing this as I sit on the 13 hour plane ride to Narita International Airport.  This is a post for anyone who is curious or interested in moving to Tokyo within the span of a month; this is specific to my own experience, but destination in Japan, time, and circumstances can depend on each individual.  This will be the no-frills, direct version of moving to Tokyo ‘how to’, with a bit of personal perspective and journey thrown into the mix.


1.  You need a reason to move overseas; opportunity, collaboration, job, studies, etc, especially if you plan to stay more than the alloted visitors stay time period.   

In my case I was contacted around end of May, asked to come to Tokyo to meet and interview with the heads of the company mid/late June (I set that up, I went over for 7 days), got the job, I accepted, did a few necessary bits (I will speak more of this later on, such as opening a bank account, setting up a base address to forward mail and contacts, researching cell phone plans, living expenses, possible lease properties and their options, creating ‘inkan’, in Japan unlike the west, in place of a signature they have what is called a ‘hanko’, your own individual name stamp, etc).  It is a lot to do within a 7 day period, pace yourself:)  

2.  Date: when your situation is solidified give yourself enough time to get all the paperwork and logistics involved in an overseas move, and set up a date you need to be in Japan.  

I knew that I needed to be at work on a specific day in mid September and a week in advanced to move myself and set up life before starting work (cell phone, hydro, gas, internet, transferring my residential certificate as well as mailing address closer to my lease property from where I set up my base address, lease property move in, furniture rental installation, curtain installation, buying further necessary small appliances, electronics, and items to be functional.)  

3.  Moving expenses for overseas transfer is expensive!  DOWNSIZE.  Get rid of anything you don’t need and pare down to a bare minimum.  Furniture, appliances, larger items are out of the question; you can buy when you get to Japan, as those things from wherever you maybe living probably will not fit into any space in Tokyo, unless of course your company is paying for everything and your lease is a penthouse.  There are also options to lease furniture, and appliances, as well as other items; I went with this option as I need to be as internationally mobile as possible, taking into consideration future moves, etc.

Briggs and Riley Baseline: Upright International Carry On, and Check-in Luggage.  With garment sleeves, flat surface bed (as the telescopic handle mechanism is on the outside), mesh pockets, front pocket, three length telescopic handle, luggage handling flat handles for easier lifting, smooth wheels, extra bag linking straps, water resistant, sturdy zippers, tough outer, grey inner lining, the carry on has a compression mechanism where you can pack more and compress contents after you zip close the case, and life time guarantee (Briggs are excellent with this lifetime warranty).  I've had the large one for a while now but its not showing any wear and tare, sturdy and extremely user friendly:)  This will last you, and worth the price.

I ended up shipping by sea 2 large boxes, and 6 smaller boxes; items that will take two months to arrive at destination, so things you wont need right away.  I chose to use the services of Yamato Transport as I have extensive experience with them in all my past moves (that’s more than I can count in one hand).  I’m carrying with me one international size carry on suit case (Briggs and Riley), three large boxes, and a large suit case (Briggs and Riley); larger one’s checked-in.  I paid extra for the extra box at check in; it adds up.  You will hemorrhage CAD or whatever currency you are using.  Moves are costly.  Remember the weight allowance for check in luggage.  

4.  LOGISTICS; I suggest being organized as to not lose your mind.  There are so many things happening that if you don’t write them down they will be forgotten.  I printed out calendars and plotted a day by day plan.  You will have many lists.  Get them done one at a time.


Things that need consideration: 
-Lease property, you need to find it, through a real estate agent or otherwise, secure the lease, sign the contract (SIZE, warning, Japan, Tokyo in particular is worse than NYC regarding prices and their ratio to the tiny size of everything).  If you need space it will cost you.  Everything is extreme in Tokyo.  So be prepared.  Also most lease properties, unless otherwise stated do not come with a refrigerator, washing machine, and if you can get a washing machine with a dryer you are lucky.  

-Sort everything that needs sorting wherever you are living at the moment, as you will need to start the process of getting visas and other government related things organized (allow time for processing).  

-Do your research, information and knowledge is key.  

-You need a base address/guarantor where everything needs to be routed until you arrive in Tokyo, my Mum’s brother’s family live in Tokyo so I had everything addressed to that address, which I will need to transfer and change once I move into my new place.  This is a necessity to set up a bank account (I am sure it differs depending on banks, but usually you need proof of income and residence in Tokyo, address, your personal stamp/signature, and forms of ID).  This applies to setting up cell phone/internet/cable/hydro/gas accounts with service providers.  

-Setting up furniture rental and installation.  

-Book flight.  

-See your GP, dentist, therapist, whomever you need to set up appointments with.  

-Medications; to bring in more than one month worth of meds, you need what is called a ‘Yakkan shoumei‘ proof of pharmaceuticals, and there is a form you can print out online which you will need to fill out and provide certain paperwork.  Scan and send it via email, and you get a certificate with an official stamp of approval.  This applies to other medical devices and things which are necessary.  

-Contact and organize everything with the moving company.  

-Sort all your belongings into various groupings (throw away, give away, donate, sell, take), decide what you will take with you and what can wait two months.

-Close bank accounts or clean up unnecessary expenses, and loose ends.  I needed to plan out where all my unsold art was going to be stored (shipped to Detroit), where my dog Clover was going to be going (with my parents), and what was going to happen to my relationship with my bf whom I’ve been living with, as well as where my extra paint supplies were going (as some of them are perishable), and so much more.

I am sure there are so many more things that need to be considered, some of which I will probably forget to mention, but that’s all that I can think of at this time.  All aspects are specific to where you are flying from, and your own unique circumstance.  If you are moving from London England or NYC it wont be as much of a shock but else where for ex. Columbus IN (where I was before I moved back to Tokyo the first time during my high school years) it can be quite a shock, not only culturally, language, and life style, but so many other details we take for granted.  

So another 10 hours or so to go but will keep you updated and if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask, knowledge is key.  It’s quite a transition, take it easy and know your limits, pace yourself so you don’t expire.

Safe traveling~ 

Twitter: BeingMarieT
Facebook: Marie Tomeoki
E-mail: marie(at)marietomeoki(dot)com                      

Sunday, August 25, 2013


I am going to begin using this blog again as; 1. I will be taking some time off from making art full time, 2. the blog on my main website gets a ton of spam (despite all the anti-spam aspects utilized), 3. my life will probably be more diversified with things outside of only art and mental health.

Other major news; I am moving to Tokyo, Japan in September.  I was just there a month back as I was offered a job and needed to investigate further in person and attend an interview.  I got the job and have organized and scheduled everything to move to Tokyo within a month.  I will do a detailed post on MOVING TO TOKYO; things that maybe helpful to other who are curious or thinking of doing similarly.

What's the job?  I will still be in the contemporary art field, but just on the other side of the canvas so to speak...

I will be personal assistant to owner and dealer of Tokyo's largest collection of Warhol's and Basquiats (amongst various other contemporary artists' works), Galerie Sho Contemporary Art, hired under the owner's company who also oversee other businesses.

I still have yet to upload updates on my main website but until I have some time to sit down and do so, this will have to suffice.  

This is a major transition for me, and one that I put A LOT of thought into; moving overseas is never a simple process, full of logistics, stresses, restrictions, and hurdles, but on the upside new experiences, challenges, exciting self evolution, making for an exciting life:)  It will definitely be an adjustment, but once I get into the routine and adapt to new surroundings and LEARN (all a learning experience), I am sure I will settle in fine, although I believe I will be traveling very often to art fairs and related business all over the world.  

So if you are interested in hearing more and staying up to date on all the details please do subscribe to my blog: we'll keep in touch and I can actually respond to my readers! (Wordpress needs to work on their blog anti-spam software, or however that all works...)

Other than that if you have any questions or just want to contact me you can find me here: 

Email: marie(at)  

Facebook page: Marie Tomeoki (please 'like'),


Facebook add as friend at: Tomeoki Marie (please let me know why you would like to connect with me).


Wednesday, January 23, 2013



Here are the new website additions and features in both English and Japanese - 

EVERYTHING IS CONSOLIDATED, INCLUDING THE BLOG, ON THE WEBSITE: it maybe a pain in the butt to have to click the subscribe button on the site but all art and mental health/illness/anti-stigma awareness blog posts will no longer be on this blogspot.     

Please take a tour of the new website and subscribe for all updates.

What am I going to do with this blog?
I'm not really sure yet, but probably anything else the website doesn't cover, a more personal journal of sorts, for example: interesting images of daily life, Clover, products I am using, fashion, things that don't fit in on my website, happenings... etc.

So if you don't want to get email updates about the extra bits and bobs (unrelated to art/mental health/illness/anti-stigma/etc) then please unsubscribe to this blogspot.

I apologize for any inconvenience or change, but this is definitely necessary for me to grow and move forward as an artist, advocate, and business; to BE as much as I can be:)

We'll take steps and move forwards together.  Thank you so much for your support and interest, I am forever grateful.

Subscribe to new website, blog post updates, interesting info, news, and goodies pertaining art and mental health here: (if you haven't already from the link above).  Thank you(*^_^*)  

Kindest Regards,