April 2018
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Art Sharing #1: Roya, Shiva, & Michael Baxter (dance & photography)

I've decided to start sharing the art that so inspires me! Every Friday I'll post art -- photography, painting, music, dance, poetry -- by people who inspire me. I'll start off doing themes for a while and after I've mostly caught up I'll switch to posting recent inspirations. This week (this counts as Friday for me because I haven't gone to bed yet!):


My two favorite bellydancers:
Roya & Shiva

(don't ask me why lj put them in a scrollbox but I guess you can only watch one at a time anyway)
if you can't get the embedded vids to work, here are the direct links:

Roya: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=89PQqSXawJA
Shiva: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oR1ZATJt38o

Every time I hit play on either of these I get sucked in and have to watch all the way through! (or most of the way through Shiva's -- dayum, he's got some stamina!) With Roya, WOW. Belly dancing is so second-nature to her that she plays with it! If you've never tried it you've no idea what an accomplishment that is. And she always smiles! all the way through! She takes so much joy in what she does. I love her veil-work and I love how she makes use of the whole space in her choreography and really moves around, yet still manages all those isolations. A lot of bellydance videos I watch involve the dancer staying in the same 4-foot circle, hardly using the legs at all -- not so with Roya! I love all the freedom that comes in her dance-running around. She doesn't really seem to perform so much as just play around and cheerfully share with whomever wants to watch. I could easily see her dancing around a fire.

Shiva -- WOW. I'm so impressed that he dances so fluidly! I think the male and/or slender body is not as easily suited to some of the movements in bellydance -- shimmies for instance -- but he does it all, seemingly without effort! Those belly rolls! DAYUM! I love the creativity of his costume -- no self-consciousness, not trying to be 'feminine' or 'masculine' but just being decorative. The headscarf is a really great touch, and I love the makeup. And he also makes use of the whole space! and OMG that backbend while shimmying?? I can't even freaking IMAGINE! oooh, and I love how he grins and waves on the cheers when balancing the length of the cane on his hip!

Also, Roya & Shiva are quite possibly the two sexiest beings in the universe. They're just so in-tune and ALIVE and sensual and free! It is a lifetime goal of mine to see them both perform live -- which means going to San Francisco and Sydney, Australia. Yay!

And I have to add a bellydance artist who doesn't bellydance: the photographer Michael Baxter. His photographs are beyond stunning! Under the cut are 6 he took of Roya, followed by 11 of other artists.






Adriana Lira







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sidheblessed ══╣╠══
Wow, I really adore Shiva. I think my belldancing teacher was suggesting we look him up - he's really impressive!

And Roya, love how she just keeps moving and moving and did I mention moving?
belenen ══╣dancy╠══
So much awesome stuff happens Down Under! :D My second-favorite male bellydancer, Jamil, also lives/performs in Australia. (not sure where)

and yeah! Roya knows how to move! :D
armandii ══╣╠══
The videos and photos are wonderful. Thanks for posting. (And it seems you posted one minute before midnight so it is Friday for you).
belenen ══╣amused╠══
thank you! and haha, I cheated. Whenever my timestamp says one minute before midnight, it's because it's actually the morning after but I still count it as the day before 'cause I haven't gone to bed. I think I posted this at about 6:20 am. ;-)
celestialsight ══╣Snowflake╠══
I wish I could take photos like that, even moreso though, I wish I could dance like that. Dayum.
acid_burns ══╣╠══
Seconded :)

Bel, I love the idea! Can't wait for next Friday ♥
belenen ══╣adoring╠══
awww yay! I'm so glad you like it! :D
belenen ══╣dancy╠══
yeah! I know!
kmiotutsie ══╣╠══
boo, i can't get the videos to work :'( is it just me?? you HAVE inspired me to look at bellydancing videos on youtube, but i can't find any matches for shiva or roya & i'm all curious now!!
belenen ══╣dancy╠══
It works for me! I dunno why it's not working for you, but here are the direct links:

Roya: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=89PQqSXawJA
Shiva: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oR1ZATJt38o

In case others are having the same prob, I'mma add the links to the post. Thanks for the heads-up!
kmiotutsie ══╣╠══
it must have just been my connection; they're working just fine now. it was odd though; i even ran searches for the names roya and shiva on youtube and nothing came up for either! I did just run a search for "bellydance" though, and sadie came up-- i was really impressed. have you seen her??

febrile_lune ══╣╠══
I think this is such a wonderful idea, Bel! Very inspiring, creative, uplifting... my favourite favourite thing to see is someone being passionate about something and I love how much love you have for life and all the beauty that does exist in the world. It's people like you who help give me hope, in times when it seems like so much is corrupted by lies and apathy... I know that true magic like this (heh, I don't know how else to describe "art" sometimes) can't ever truly die.

Thank you for posting these videos! I loveloveLOVE belly dancing, it is very inspiring to me and these dancers are so talented... it takes my breath away. of course I got sucked into all the other bellydancing videos and what I really think is great is the videos of people who do it on their own, who are willing to try this really complicated art and share it with others because it is SUCH a personal, intimate form of art and ahhh. I love seeing it.

beautiful beautiful!
belenen ══╣kissy╠══
I'm so glad you love this idea, and so glad it brought you inspiration and joy!
febrile_lune ══╣╠══
If you ever do go to San Fran, let me know! Maybe I could see the performance with you? O:) Not that I tend to go and invite myself along to things so if that was at all a problem, at least we could meet up! San Fran is about a half an hour away from here. 1/2 hour to an hour depending on traffic :)

I know you don't mean soon, but just keep it in mind!
belenen ══╣effervescent╠══
OMG, you live near San Fran??? I had no idea! I would LOVE to do that! Would I be able to crash on your couch for a night, do you think? That would make it so much more do-able, maybe I could even do it next year! *excited*
febrile_lune ══╣╠══
You're more than welcome to crash here for as long as you'd feel comfortable! :) I hope you can make it over... this would be such an inspiring experience and I'd love to meet you... that in itself would be inspiring!
lorelei_sakti ══╣╠══
My cat Yuki is captivated by Roya. :p He keeps trying to touch her; it's so cute.
belenen ══╣adorable╠══
awwww, how cute!
on communication, social justice, intimacy, consent, friendship & other relationships, spirituality, gender, queerness, & dreams. Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.
Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.