Monday, December 21, 2009
Monday, November 30, 2009
Entangled. The word made me think of hair. Lots of hair. Lots of hair in a snarly mess. My hair in a snarly mess. Hair. Hairhairhair. So I began with hair.
So this is my first official post for Illustration Friday. (Hi! I'm a newbie to this Friday thing.) But I actually created this second piece a few weeks ago for IF's unbalanced and never got a chance to post it (due to a stressful week with an extremely ill cat).
How fitting that something unbalanced can be entangled too.
Saturday, November 14, 2009
Hmm, that didn't make much sense did it?
(WARNING: Dull paragraph ahead.) Figured I could at least post something since I haven't done so in a week. I'm terrible at it, I know. I have oodles of ideas for posts, and oodles of photos that I take throughout the week, and lots of little art things I work on, so one would think I could at least get a photo up on here. I do know what it is though that makes me not want to post, it's two things in particular. One: I worked for nine years, day in and day out, in front of a computer and honestly I really could care less about using one anymore. The only thing I can compare it to, for instance, is if one ate the same meal over and over everyday for that many years. I bet one would be sick of that meal (though, I guess, you'd still have to eat, and once you were released from the monotony you would have a variety of choices when it came to food, but a computer is a computer, it's not like the brand makes a difference.... well, you get the point. I'm rambling aren't I?). And two: I am a perfectionist, or rather liken myself to one, which becomes a problem when typing up a post, because once I type it up I end up rereading it, and editing it, and rereading it, and editing it, about, ohhh, five times, sometimes more, which ends up taking hours. Really. Hours. I'm lucky if I get it done under three. And then the photos! OH the PHOTOS! I usually take pics in crappy conditions - bad lighting, no flash (flash is evil! bad flash! bad!) so I spend another hour or so adjusting this or that in Photoshop, and well, it just takes a long time. (End dull paragraph.)
Well, now that I've babbled on about nothing in particular.... here's a photo of me in front of a Gary Baseman painting at the True Self exhibit at Jonathan LeVine Gallery, which was a group show curated by Baseman himself. Not much to say about it (the show) since I was not blown away by much of the artwork on display. Except for a small handful of exceptional pieces, the show fell flat for me. To state this here, means that I was more than a bit disappointed. Plus, the day of the opening was ooky with rain, and walking around NYC in a downpour really put the rotty cherry on the moldy cake. (Okay, maybe I'm making it sound worse than it was, but, oh nevermind...) The redemption that day was a stop at Max Brenner's Chocolate Emporium for some chocolatey goodness with my bud Jon. It was yummylicious good.
Alright! There were some wonderful things to see at the exhibit. Two favorites...
Oh wait... here's (another) photo of Gary Baseman and I! Now where did this come from? (Oh look, I think I can see up my nose! Way to use the zoom Jon! Hehe.)
Saturday, November 7, 2009
I finished her. Last week. And then I didn't know what to name her, so I didn't. She was my mind's holiday flair. I don't like the word "holiday" - I'm not sure why. So let's say, she was inspired by the festivities to come in wintertime. Which makes me think of the winter solstice, and solstice trees, and absolutely nothing to do with the materialistic silliness that takes place in this country (among others). And then I thought, "Oooo, she's like an absinth fairy, but with feathery wings". (I'm not sure where I'm going with this thought process.)
I think this little piece was more about the composition than experimentation with color, and also line work. I enjoy playing with the lines, in this case in the wings and the lower part of the image.
hair and dress (right below the elbow, see the little shimmers?)
Saturday, October 24, 2009
Monday, October 19, 2009
The Mission Inn (because one can never take enough photos of it):
The view from one of the rooftop courtyards (btw - that's the domiest dome I've ever seen):
The first evening began with some Mexican fare at a local restaurant, and the beginning of the Artist Jam. Some of the artists in front of the blank canvas:
L to R - Yoskay Yamamoto, Greg "Craola" Simkins, Buff Monster, Johnny Rodriguez aka KMNDZ, James Gurney, Travis Louie, and Liz McGrath. Nonetheless this was an artist-ful extravaganza, with Miss Mindy, Audrey Kawasaki, Molly Crabapple, Michael Hussar, Tim Biskup, Tara McPherson, Gary Baseman, KRK Ryden, and oodles of other artists showing up throughout the weekend.
The evening continued with Son of Baby Tattooville, an exhibit at the Riverside Art Museum featuring work by this year's participating artists. My fave piece, a Yoskay Yamamoto:
Then it was time for Dr. Sketchy's Anti Art School. Look, that's me sketching! (Photo courtesy of Arrested Motion):
Sometime during the course of the weekend, mysterious, creepy doll parts began appearing in attendees and artists' rooms. All included a mysterious note, which in turn led to a Saturday night scavenger hunt that began in the Inn's catacombs (Yes, catacombs. Real catacombs, which had been closed off to the public a long time ago, but were mysteriously opened up for us). My doll head and note:
Someone (Sarah) found a whole doll sitting in her room (which she found extremely creepy):
The hunt split us off into groups and had us roaming the old hotel throughout the evening (someone in our group tried to climb a roof in an attempt to break into a room just to get a clue, and security was dispatched as we all scattered to hide). Here one of us is "icing" a clue (which was a hoot as the first attempt included filling a whole plastic bag with ice and dunking the paper in it, which did nothing except make a ridiculous mess):
Later on the Jam continued (which included lots of socializing). Gary Baseman and Buff Monster:
As the clock (an hourglass) was counting down for the artists to finish up, the painting was moved to a table so that more of them could work on it together:
The finished piece:
There was also a giveaway/raffle of this massive (at least 5 foot high) painting created by Johnny Rodriguez. The joke was on everyone when we all received a winning raffle ticket. The painting was a series of smaller panels that were all bolted together, and in the end, everyone received a piece of this "pie":
At the end, all the attendees left with a massive goody bag filled with gifts from the sponsors and hand created pieces by the artists. There were so many things going on the whole weekend that I just wouldn't be able to list them all here. Arrested Motion did a full coverage of the event here.
Whew. Though the flying wears me down and I come home exhausted, I think I'll be returning next year. It was my second year at Baby Tattooville, but seeing friends from last year and meeting new peeps this year, makes it feel like a twisted family gathering. Which is a very good thing, and I don't think I'll be able to pass it up.
Oh, geez, almost forgot, my most-est favorite artist, Mr. Gary Baseman, out of the blue, presented me with his Barcelona book during Sunday brunch. That completely made the whole weekend superbly superb! (How could I forget to mention that?!)
How ridculously giggly I was! (And thanks to Andy Stern for sneaking my camera and shooting this photo!)
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
So, yeah, I'm getting really good at being MIA, huh? No excuses anymore since I no longer have a steady, sit-at-a-desk and be a desk-monkey, paying job. While I prepare for a next step regarding this situation, I have a bit more time to do artsy-fartsy things (ie; complete the 20 or so pieces floating around the studio, get that zodiac series finished up, and get some sort of online store open, AND get things done (like, other things, not the artsy-fartsy kind). I've already completed quite a few items on an ever-growing to-do list. Every time I check something off as done, I get filled with a brief sense of elation, the kind that makes you want to jump up on a podium in front of a crowd and yell "Do, YOU SEE?!! DO YOU SEE WHAT I HAVE ACCOMPLISHED!?". Though currently, thanks to the constant growth of this list, that elation is becoming a deflation, the type a balloon does when you make farty noises with it.
And then there was the car thing I had to deal with. The lemon went to the bodyshop since it failed inspection on me, which required bodywork, ...and then more bodywork. I was without it for two weeks. It sucked, but not really, since I got to drive a PT Cruiser in the meantime. I find these Cruisers a bit cheeze (strange looking and clunky), but I was surprised by how nice it was to drive (most likely because it was new). When I finally got my lemon back, it was so sparkly and shiny and new looking, that I had random peeps at the gas station giving me thumbs up including random hollers as I drove down the street. But, just like the list elation, it became short-lived when my engine light turned on two weeks ago, right before my trip to CA.
The lemon gives me poo again! GAH! GAH! (Grrrrgafushikkamakca!).
But I had a nice weekend trip out to CA for this year's Baby Tattooville (more on it later). It was a good break from car issues. Yes. And reality.
So, I've been thinking that this blog needs some serious sprucing up, and I'm thinking of editing back some of the previous posts, since sometimes I ramble on and really don't need there to be rambles all over the place. So I apologize ahead of time to anyone who might get random updates while I do this sometime over the next week... I think. Yes. (I need to add this to my to-do list).
I have no more excuses.
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
I got this far with The Veil until I decided to over-experiment, taking it slightly in a different direction, and completely didn't like where it was heading. (It's so... so, uhhhhhhhhh. Uhhhhhhhh.) Back to square one. I'm going to keep on recreating this piece until I like where it's going. This will be the fourth time that I will be starting it. Hahahahaaa. Nutty!
I've decided to be good and finish up all the fifteen or so (which means possibly more), random pieces I'm working on before I start something new. I promised myself. Well, no, not really. Well, yes. See, the promise changed a bit as I concluded that I couldn't just stop putting random new ideas down on paper. That's just not possible. So then after dealing with the realization of this, I decided that I should try and attempt finishing four to five pieces as I mull over new sketches. But I'm not sure anymore. Maybe the goal should be finishing up three instead, and then I start on something new. (?)
OH MY GOSH! I just realized I have artist ADD.
Maybe it's my process instead. (?) These take so long to complete. Hours, lots of them. Between sketching, transferring, revising, staining, linework and approximately three coats of ink.... no wonder I jump from one thing to another. If I have a large chunk of uninterrupted time, I can get pretty far along (the process still takes a few days). It's just that I don't have that right now and my focus and inspirations change (you know, one day it's yellow, the other it's blue). So I have all these pieces I work on back and forth and all over. My best bud tells me that one day (or week, or month) I'll just finish everything. All at once. Just like that. I'll have this big pile of finished pieces, out of the blue, just like that.
Man, I hope he's right because I have just oodles of other sketches to develop, and Ooooo, I want to try all sorts of printing techniques.
Oooo. Okay, I'm running off on daydreams now. I wish I had oodles of free time.
On a separate note, last night I dreamt that I was walking down a dirt path through a sparse, green forest to my father's house. It was a perfect late afternoon, the weather being amazing. As I moseyed along, stopping here and there to sniff some flowers (yes, I actually do that a lot in waking life), something strange began to happen. Most of my mouth, mainly my lips, but not my tongue, started going very numb ever so slowly. It's as if I had gotten a load of invisible novocaine shot into my mouth by an invisible dentist. It just didn't make sense. I oddly felt very Alice in Wonderland. By the time I got to my father's house, which no longer resembled a house, but a treehouse that started at ground level (bizzare-ness!), I could barely speak. I tried to tell him that I couldn't stay for dinner because I had to get to the dentist and find out why I was having novocaine syndrome. He couldn't understand me though. All that was coming out of my mouth was "Nai hab do gno tthh da nennis." At this point I became so worried that something was very, very, wrong, that I actually woke up to find that I had been sleeping with my face mostly in my pillow. My mouth was open, partially covering a balled fist, my balled fist, which was somehow trying to fit in there. Weirdness. I was very relieved that that's all it was. Talk about de-stressing while dreaming.
I soooo need to get rid of stress. Big time. I have to think about this some more.
Oh yeah. Then I fell back asleep and fought some dementors, including Voldemort, in some fancy, public library, with Harry and a bunch of other people. This, I think, has to do with the fact that I just (finally!) went to see the movie this past weekend, and maybe because I was stressing (there I go again) about not remembering when my current batch of library books was due back.
It really helps to get this stuff down. I always knew that those damn dream dictionaries were a bunch of fluff. Just write it down and it all begins to make sense.
This post was much longer than I planned.
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Thursday, July 16, 2009
So, life is busy.
It really is just filled with small roadblocks (and then some not so small ones). There's stuff going on that I can write about here, and then there is some not so good, very serious stuff that I can't write about here. Everyday I wake up and think oh no, another day to plow through. So I get up and turn autopilot-robot mode on. Like slogging through quicksand (wait no nonoo, that would be completely mired and sinking) more as if I 'm just slugging through very think mud that's up to my knees (thankfully), and there are lots of mosquitos, and it's very humid, my hair plastered to my face, and a massive 30 pound sack on my back. That's how it is. Okay, maybe not that bad, take away the sack. Surprisingly though I've kept very levelheaded. For the most part anyway.
The flea problem is still in swing, the vehicle still not repaired. Last week it was a tire going flat, this week it's the car battery spewing green stuff. I mean, GREEN stuff! I really can't stand owning a car. Sometimes I wonder if I should move back to Chicago. Didn't have to have a car then. Those were good times. I used to get a lot done on public transport: reading, organizing my day, sketching, more reading, people watching, spacing out and meditating (it's both the same, spacing out and meditating - maybe I should say daydreaming, or musing, that way I don't sound like a nutter). It just all seemed easier, life seemed easier. I swear that owning a vehicle is 50 percent of the stress in my life, and then the amount of driving I have to do each day! That's it. It's definitely the car. It's the CARRRRR!
It even gave me a really good scare last week. I was sitting (in the car) in the parking area of where my studio is located. It had just turned dark out, there wasn't a single soul in sight. The large brick buildings looming around me, while I sat in silence and waited for a friend to show up. Suddenly I hear a scratch somewhere in my car. Not just a scratch, but more like a scraping, someone scraping something against my car! Then silence. Then I hear it again, louder. Then again, much louder. Was someone messing with me? Suddenly I hear it from the front of my car! Then frantic scraping, like an animal trapped under my hood trying to claw it's way out. It freaked me out, but at the same time I was thinking oh thank god it's not a crazy nutter outside messing with me, it's a rabid animal under the hood instead! Then a squeal followed by loud gurgling. At that point I realized that it was the car itself acting up. Spewing that green stuff from the battery most likely.
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
I sketched this while I was having a moment (okay, it was a short pity party for myself - see below for why). Just a lot of pondering - see how she's pondering, leaning through a doorway over an empty ocean? Drawn from the subconscious, I decipher it later. I consider drawings like this direct reflections of myself at that moment. I don't know what I'll draw, or am drawing, till it's done. Maybe I'll turn this into something later. In ink?
No, I'm not lost. Well, yes I am but at the same time I'm not. I'm lost in the real world, but not in the virtual (my blog). In the virtual I'm on a vacation. On this vacation I'm doing lots of painting, relaxing, hanging out with my favorite artists and painting up a storm. Okay, that last bit was a dream I had last night and considering what I've been dealing with in the real world, it was well deserved. My dreams lately have been about running errands, running late for the day job, or just literally running from anything and everything, so, yeah, last night, that was a damn good dream.
On the other hand, the real world: In May I got viciously ill. (Oooo, Viciously ill. That would be a good name for a band.) I was out from the job for two weeks. Massive vertigo kept me from doing anything, no computer, no watching movies, no reading, no going for walks, no drawing. Moving my head made everything shift and spin, I couldn't focus. All I could do was sit or sleep. It was theee MOST boooooring time of my life in a long time.
Then there was the fender bender, or as I'd like to say, a car smoosh. (The lemon is operable, but until I raise moolah to fix it, I have limited lighting at night.)
And now a flea outbreak that I have been dealing with for going on two weeks now. Preston somehow caught them and dispersed them throughout the house. Before I figured out that he had them, it was too late. This chaotic situation has exhausted me to the bone and I feel like a zombie way down to the deep core. Preston is quarantined at my mother's, and I believe, flea free, and my studio has become a mess as I stop by to pick things up, drop things off, in the midst of all this nonsense. I'm also crashing on my mother's floor or at a friend's house while I set bombs off and do lots of vacuuming at home.
The only thing that's kept me sane is going on bike rides, even if it's only once a week. I stop everything I'm doing and just go. I drop everything. Thanks to my best bud Gungywump, my bike's been spruced up and also outfitted with some lights. On the 4th of July we rode from Northampton, MA up to Amherst UMASS for the fireworks. It was great being on bikes. We got some nice commentary on our use of this mode of transportation. Just riding through the campus and the fireworks blasting overhead was pretty surreal. When the finale started and a lot of people started leaving (during the best part!) it was great knowing that the two of us could enjoy the whole show and not worry about being stuck in traffic. And sure enough, we blasted past everyone. The cars were fender to fender and we just blew through Amherst and down the Norwottock Trail. It was magically surreal riding down this perfect trail through the woods at night. The moon was full and there was some poofy cloud coverage, which made everything just perfect. What was surprising was the amount of people that were on the trail at this time of the night. I'm sure quite a bit of it had to do with the fireworks, but many people were out just riding. All of it was fantastical. It was like some strange nighttime, woodfolk highway. The sound of crickets and frogs, and in the distance, silently approaching, a pair of faint lights. It was weirdly fairylike and communal at the same time. Very cool.
Oh, and (though this show is over now) I was lucky enough to manage to get myself down to Jonathan LeVine Gallery for the Andy Kehoe exhibit that I had been anxiously anticipating for months! His stuff just oozes awesomeness. I love his surreal landscape backgrounds, they're like bizarre extensions of the strange places I visit in my dreams.
Here's my obligatory photo with the artist. Notice the cup in hand. I don't drink very often, so here after one small drink I was a bit buzzed and talking very silly, looking very silly, and all that. I know I was saying random things, but he was really cool, down to earth, very nice as he listened to my nonsensical raving about his art. I also got to chat with him about his technique - that was the best part.
Monday, June 8, 2009
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Sunday, May 3, 2009
(Some revisions are necessary... not sure if that is quite
the way an owl lands, will need to do some research and then revise.)
Oh where, oh where did I go for so long? I fell off the face of the planet.
No, not true. Have not been feeling well ever since the massive cold I had, and have been taking it easy, which also included a break from going to the studio and a break from the internet, posting and emailing. But I have been trying to stay productive at home working on smaller things, which can still be a bit rough when you are not quite up to par.
I also parted with one of my favorite pieces, which I didn't want to. I guess that is the lot of any artist. You give birth to ideas, put lots of thought, work, love and whatnot into your creations, and eventually you must part with them. It was a mental battle to let this certain piece go, like a child leaving home forever. I actually wanted to hold onto it and not sell it, but . . . time to move on, let other ideas develop. Do other artists have problems with letting their work go off into the unknown?
Ah, the mental battles.
I battle myself all the time. I would love to make a living off the things I create, but I wonder how possible it is at times. I could be blatant and post my work all over the internet, telling people to buy, buy, buy. But that's not me. It's more important for me to just create and not lose sight of that. Though I guess it would be nice to just live off what I enjoy doing.
Time for a tea break, and then back to creating.
Sunday, April 19, 2009
(Note: This post was written before the last post. Because I had been in a sickly state, I felt the need to whine about my being sick and post that one first. I am happy to report that after attending work for only two hours on Friday, and after a fully swollen face on Saturday, I am very-muchly recovering. Though I do find my hearing to be a bit funky still.)
This sketch went through a bunch of changes, and I think it's very close to being done. I'll most likely revise it when I create the final drawing in prep for inking. I know of at least one thing I'd like to change, that strap across her chest. It completely makes the eye just get stuck on it. And once it's stuck, it doesn't move.
Almost all the sketches are complete now. I'm reworking Cancer and only have Pisces to finish. What was to be a simple task has turned out much bigger than I planned. I'm not sure why I can't keep things simple. This was to be a bunch of small doodles, teeny, tiny, simple drawings. But they're already growing both in idea and physical size.
I have to keep reminding myself that it's okay to let things go and let them develop. I'm not only trying to apply this principle to creating stuff, but also to my life in general. Kind of a go with the flow mentality.
And onto other news...
The lemon is operable once again! Many monies, and a tax return later, it drives in superbly buttery shape. Meaning smooth and flowy. I can no longer hear a deadly rattle emanating from the rear of the vehicle, and am reporting fewer bone rattling, road bumps.
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Seven AM. I'm dressed and ready to go to work, well, mostly ready anyway, and I'm not going. My nose is running like a faucet, my head is filled with lead, and my ears have become tunnels to nowhere. I kind of knew I was coming down with something this past weekend. It was an extra long weekend too, since I took Monday and Tuesday off from work to focus on painting. Sore throat on both of those days, but yesterday I felt alright and I thought that I had managed to come out mostly unscathed, with barely any sniffles. Hah! Good morning puffy eyes! I have to say, the worst is the ears. They are hurtin!
Mmm, hot cup of tea.
I wrote up a completely different post last night, but crawled off to bed in a sickly daze before I got to post it, so I'll be saving that for later today or tomorrow. It was a post that was four days in the making. I think I started it Sunday night and wrote a bit every night after.
So my four days off were spent in a mixed state, Saturday and Sunday being spent with family members (Easter). Even though I didn't have a vehicle, I managed, through bribery, to get a ride to pick up some art supplies. Except for the brushes and some panels, which were a necessary purchase, Brad at Blackbird Studio inspired the oilsticks and spraypaint. His forays into different techniques are giving me all sorts of ideas.
Six PM. Feeling ooky. No, feeling ookier. I had taken a three hour nap, and feel like I need another. Foggy brain makes me just want to sit around in a daze and not do much, like stare at walls. I feel like a rubbery carrot. All rubbery and bendy in the brain.