Posts Tagged ‘rainbow’

“What IS a Rainbow Gathering?” To me it is Woodstock with amateur musicians and I’m in the band.

April 9, 2018

Every year about 10,000 hippies and freethinkers go backpacking for a week on July 1st thru 7th. The location is always different and not revealed until about two weeks before it starts. Visit to see where and what it is. I have attended four Rainbow Gatherings. The first gathering I attended was in Pennsylvania in 1987 then Idaho, California and Utah.

This is a description about my trip to The Rainbow Gathering in California 2004… I wrote this to help me remember…

Thousands of People chant OM. This photo was snapped just before I decided it was time to put away the camera and experience the event… Yes, it’s important to remember to LIVE LIFE instead of DOCUMENTING LIFE.

I went to the gathering with a goal in mind. I wanted to play my guitar and sing in public. Yes, mission accomplished. Living in Chico, California and working at the plastics factory when there was a layoff, my wife suggested that I borrow the car and drive over to the gathering. My friend Mike Jensen wanted to go and so we checked the oil, brake fluid, transmission fluid and water and set out on a classic American road trip. We made it as far as Reno the first day and slept by the side of the road.

Main Circle: I feel positive with the meeting between

 the Mormon Youth of Salt Lake City and the Rainbow Gathering…

Greg Vanderlaan in Heber City, Utah

Often, there is a divide between performer and audience…

It’s better when the audience is the performer.

My experiences following the Grateful Dead…

It became apparent that there was something ELSE going on in addition to “rock and roll/show business”. Some times I would not bother to buy a ticket to the concert at all but was happy to play music in the parking lot. Many people DID NOT attend the concerts. They went to experience the scene that surrounded the DEAD. There was a philosophy that the band was not the center of attention.

Dancing at the Rainbow Gathering in California… Dun Dun Village…

The Rainbow Gathering is the logical outgrowth of this feeling. The people from the audience (and other like minded individuals) meet in a National Forest and have a wonderful camping trip. At this level, the band does not even attend at all.

In 1972, a friend of mine went to San Francisco and went to the Fillmore West and came back to our high school and said… LET”S BUILD OUR OWN.

That was the beginning of Forbes Mill in Los Gatos California… We had a light show and electric rock music every weekend at an abandoned stone flour mill in the center of town… On Wednesday nights we performed folk music. My band performed… I was the head of security and did advertising posters.

Since we had Town sponsorship of our “Teen Club” thru the organization Youth Unlimited, we had to make sure no laws were being broken or the police would shut us down. Certainly no drinking or illegal drug use or housing of runaways. My take on law enforcement was to direct potential lawbreakers to the nearby hole in the fence that lead to the wooded area next to the freeway.  I admit that a lot of laws were broken on State of California property, but that was NOT MY CONCERN. I was responsible for making sure that OUR property was crime free.

The light show was created by using four slide projectors and two spinning wheels with variable speed motors that blocked the light from reaching the white wall behind the bandstand. Each cardboard wheel had holes cut into it so that the slides would be projected in a stroboscopic manner.  Some slides were abstract art created by “crystal craze” paint and others were photographs.

We also owned a strobe light and I learned to not point it at the electric organ player because the blinking light made it impossible to see which keys were black and which were white…

Fire Tending Meditation: a way to focus attention

April 6, 2018

When at the Rainbow Gathering in Utah 2014 I was given the opportunity to focus my attention. Here is what happened…

While at the Welcome Home Kitchen, the Fire Tender wanted to go to another kitchen and trade a cooler filled with coffee for pizza. He asked if someone would watch the fire while he was gone. SOMEONE had to be there… I volunteered. I Said “I’ll be here. I’ll be the responsable adult. I can do that, I have done that.”

he said “Great” and Left with the cooler filled with coffee.

So I took over and made sure we didn’t burn down the forest. I also collected wood, placed it carefully on the fire arranging the logs so that they would burn without causing a lot of smoke AND I invited arriving people to help themselves to a cup of coffe or clean drinking water… and to take a break and relax around the fire.

This is a classic way to focus attention as the placement of logs on the fire is very similar to Zen Gardening with sand…

So, during this time… I asked for a Really Big Idea… I had attended Rainbow Gatherings before and I wanted each visit to be different. It’s pointless and boring to keep on repeating experiences… so, this time I wanted to get a really big Idea…

and here it is: A SolarFire powered Desalinization Machine. Use a driftwood fire to power a steam engine. Use the force from the steam engine to drive a water pump. Pump seawater thru a pipe in the fire and into a long black pipe with a reflector that focuses sunlight on the pipe. When the water boils, it expands in volume… at the end of the pipe, steam will be billowing out with a great deal of force. Use that force to drive an electricity generating turbine. Collect the steam and let it turn back into a liquid… The result is Pure H20, NaCl and Electricity… all valuable and sellable.

Clean safe drinking water is a big problem. We could use the collected steam for drinking, bathing, livestock, gardens… AND making Ice for a really great Scotch on the Rocks.

To make this pracital, the location of the machine would need to be near a big pile of driftwood. On Agate Beach in California, I have seen a pile of driftwood that covers the entire beach for about a half a mile… In other locations, use watever resource is available. For Example: In Saudi Arabia it would make more sense to burn oil or gas…

So, during my meditation I Got my really big idea…

Later, the fire tender returned and his mission to get pizza was successful.

Much later I was sitting by the fire and another Rainbow Gatherer approached… He said mockingly: “Have you been sitting in that same spot for two days?” Which was true, I did spend a couple of days at the Welcome Home Tent.

I replied: “No, I also worked as the fire tender… That gave me an opportunity to Focus My Attention… [said slowly] Focus… My… Attention… ”

The fire tender was listening and he nodded with understanding… Later we ended up hanging out together and he was a fine fellow… He was also very interested in being in the Cleanup Crew… I assume he got paid a lot in valuable stuff left behind.

Long ago I was playing the drums with some Buddhists at an anti-war protest march… I asked them why we were playing such an odd rhythm… They said that it requires that you Focus Your Attention… It’s true… That experience was quite different than bang out a 4/4 on the big bass drum… I also did that at the same protest, our goal was to get George Bush the Father to remember that we didn’t LIKE his war… and there were people playing the drums 24 hours a day in Lafayette Park to remind him… His only choices were to listen or flee…

Origin of the saying “Welcome Home” at The Rainbow Gathering…

April 6, 2018

It was told to returning Vietnam Veterans in 1971 who were not feeling welcome at home. Some were feeling like a Stranger in a Strange Land. Welcome Home, Brother… We LOVE you… I believe this is true because it was told to me by Mike Jensen while we were busy gathering rainbows.

Read More at:

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and now… a Psychedelic Art Show…

 Forest: a Place For Rest

 Pyramids in Popular Culture

 UFO visits Humboldt County

 Hydrogen Fuel Cell Demonstration by Schatz Energy Lab

 Remember to Legalize Medicinal Psychedelics

Bliss Drumming in Arcata, CA

 Magic: Fireworks

 Beetle – Scarab

Math: Not just for Rocket Science Anymore

Flutterby Rainbow Spiral Coffee Cup

November 11, 2011

Visit my webstore to purchase... click on image.

More Coffee cup ART:

Photoshop Tutorial: Create a Rainbow Squiral using Actions.

October 13, 2009
rainbow squiral

AFTER: rainbow squiral

BEFORE: Redwood Forest in Eureka, CA

BEFORE: Redwood Forest in Eureka, CA

Photoshop Tutorial: Create a Rainbow Squiral using Actions.

Window:Actions allows you to memorize series of commands to be played back later. In this example we will play back an action 42 times.

Open a SQUARE image. Like this Redwood Forest… 1536px by 1536px
Layer: Duplicate layer: OK
Edit: Free Transform: 90 percent both vertical and horizontal: click check mark…
Layer: Layer Style: Outer Glow:
select from the drop down box Structure: a rainbow gradient,
drop down box Elements: Technique: select precise,
set size to 79…OK

(size is related to picture size-try different numbers)

Layer Style Photoshop

Layer Style Photoshop

Now we have a rainbow edged layer…

Rainbow Edged Forest Layer...

Rainbow Edged Forest Layer...

Click on Window:Actions to open the menu.
Click on the three tiny lines in the upper right hand corner.

actions menu

actions menu

Click on NEW ACTION from the drop down box…

Give it a name and click on RECORD button.

new action

new action

{record all these mouse clicks to be played back later…}
Layer: Duplicate layer: OK
Edit: Transform: Rotate:
92 percent both ways, -12 degrees, click on the check mark…
Image: Adjustment: Hue/Saturation: -25 hue, OK
Filter: Blur: Blur

Stop recording by clicking on the square at the bottom of the Actions Menu.



Click on the name you gave your action in the list of all possible actions…
Play that action again by clicking on the triangle at the bottom of the actions menu…

rainbow forest after a couple of rotations...

rainbow forest after a couple of rotations...

play that action about 42 times… YES, 42 times!

Layer: Flatten Image
File: Save for Web and Devices, SAVE, give it a name, SAVE

This is a Archimedes Spiral. Not a Fibonacci Spiral… that one is interesting too!

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