Entries from: August 2007

Breathe, Breathe

August 28th, 2007, Comments (15)

Art that was made over a couple evenings and there are some sketches I did earlier that I may or may not post as time allows. In this piece I was inspired by the gorgeous art of Bailey Saliwanchik whose art I saw online at the Three Graces Gallery. My piece below, "Woman with Lilies" is about 11"x14" with acrylic and pencil on watercolor paper.

I like how she turned out. I was also inspired by one of Jessie's latest art piece which is why I had to scoop it up. :-)

In other news, I'm feeling a sudden time crunch. The days are folding in on one another so fast and I feel slightly suffocated. My hair/make-up trial (hair wasn't good and my mom's allergic to her make-up) didn't go well a few weeks ago and now I'm scrambling to find someone else. Arg. Trying to remember what keeps me balanced...making art, getting exercise, laughter, not too much caffeine, quiet time, good self-care, playfulness. The r.s.v.p.'s have started to come in which is fun, but also reminds me how close this wedding is! Ack! Double Ack! Anticipation was never my strong point. So, please excuse previous and future blathering about how much closer the wedding is every single day. Heh. Deep breathing.

No, No, No

August 27th, 2007, Comments (8)

...nothing gives me that
sinking feeling quicker than
that split second when i
in my head at the same time
i hear my my mouth saying yes...

-from Marilyn's August 26th poem

My mind is all over the place. Marilyn's poem of the day from yesterday struck a chord with me or something more like a resounding gong. It makes me a little sad that it seems so hard for me to say no sometimes. This fear of hurting people's feelings at the expense of my own feelings, safety, and well-being is upsetting. Last week I said yes to something when I wanted to say no and while it all worked out o.k., it was not the right decision. I let the possibility of hurting someone's feelings overpower my gut instincts and I put myself in an uncomfortable and risky situation. I'm embarrassed about it now, but it has made it more clear to me than ever that I need to stick up for myself, say what I mean, and say no way more often.

I'm procrastinating a bit. My studio is a ridiculous sight to behold right now, like a tornado blew through it. Overwhelm central. O.k., so, I'm taking stock and taking into consideration Jessie's interesting combination of techniques for listing 5 things I'll do and 5 things the Universe will provide. Then I'm going to take some baby steps towards my goals for the day.

Art from today and yesterday to be posted later on. Toodaloo to you!

The Weekend and some Art

August 26th, 2007, Comments (10)

The shower was really lovely. My mom and best friend did such a great job putting it together and I had a great time. They did a tea theme with iced and hot teas and finger sandwiches which reminded me of when I was little and my mom would cut the crust off my bread. My mom found these adorable tea bag rests for favors and my best friend set up a scrapbook table for guests to make their own page as my guest book. She also arranged some games including one with questions and answers that she'd asked the fiansor by email earlier and people had to guess how many I'd get right. There were questions like where was your first date, what's your most annoying habit, what do you love most about her and what do you think she loves most about you? Some of them just didn't apply to us (like who is your (and her) celebrity crush? I guessed Fabio for both and he said Carrot Top for both. heh.) , so I got 12 out of 20 right which was pretty good I think. :-)

Yesterday's art was decorating little thank you bags for my mom, sister, best friend and future sister in law for their help with the shower. It said "From my shower to yours" and had shower gel and a loofah thing inside. I got that idea from the best friend who got it from the knot. :-) I decorated the bags with little umbrellas and rain drops, but forgot to take a pic. Ah well. Thursday's art, "Bird Silhouettes," is above. I've been playing with it and I want to do another version of it at some point cause it's not quite what I want. I still like it, I'm just having trouble bringing my idea into reality as it's a very fuzzy vision.  It's on watercolor paper with watercolors and ink. And then the piece below, Friday's art, "Butterfly Woman" is a just playin around with caran d'ache piece and that's just what came out.

The fiansor's family has left for NYC and we're home relaxing at last. Ahhhh.

p.s. The show at Nahcotta where I'll be showing my Subway Stories is running from September 12th - October 7th. And the opening is Friday, September 14th from 5 - 8 p.m. And I'll be there! :-)

Wedding Designs

August 25th, 2007, Comments (21)

There is so much that goes into a wedding. It's a lot of work! The rewards of hard work are there too though, like after all the back and forth with a designer and then stuffing and hand addressing and stamping a bazillion envelopes, I am so pleased with the result. I've blurred out some names and details.


And below, you can see a bit of the envelope, stamps, and those two adorable painted tin birds were purchased in Boulder, CO and I'm thinking about having them top our wedding cake. :-)

Long discussions with family. Juggling who dances with who, who walks with who down the aisle gets complicated in a complicated family like mine. But we're working it out. No one wants anyone else's feelings to be hurt. After a day of feeling stressed and sad, I'm starting to feel calmer and ready to snuggle up in bed. Have a great weekend all y'alls!

For Now

August 24th, 2007, Comments (6)

Art to be posted later. Started something last night and I'm not sure where I'm taking it. What I know is that I wish I had a big wooden panel to paint it on. Something tall and skinny. I wonder if I can get a panel cut like that locally?

I've got a new post up at the Blue Tree blog with all my Subway art together with sizes and prices and information about the show they can all be seen at next month at Nahcotta in Portsmouth, NH. Nahcotta also has a blog here and they featured a piece of my subway art there the other day which was awesome. Nahcotta is a gorgeous space and I'm excited to see (in person) the art of so many talented artists I've admired online (and meet some of them too at the opening!) Oh, I just popped over to their blog and saw the postcard for the show (looks great!) and saw that they're running a cool contest, so do go check it out!

Last night, after a very full day, I found myself feeling exhausted. I sat down and watched a long documentary on Katrina, When the Levees Broke, on HBO. It was devastating and at one point, out of nowhere I started to sob. I know I can get overwhelmed by the smallest things, but it's the big things on top of the small things that really overwhelm me. Sometimes there is too much sadness to know what to do with it. I contribute in my own small ways, through charities, through art, through being a decent person. But I feel so small in comparison to so much suffering. Of course, it's the stories of individual people and their suffering that broke my heart. It certainly puts things in perspective and makes me grateful for the life I have. But it also makes me furious with our inept government. How could they turn their backs on such a disaster? I don't understand.

For bit of a lighter tale, here's a conversation I had with my mom this morning about my bridal shower tomorrow.

her: "So, what time are you going to get there tomorrow? I'll be there an hour early."
me:  "Ok, so do you want me to be there early?"
her: "Well, I'd like you to be a little surprised."
me: "Ok, so would you like me to show up on time, with the guests?"
her: "Well, it might be nice to have you there a little early."
me: "Mom, just tell me. What time would you like me to be there?"
her: "Oh. Well, let me think about it."

Oy vey. From our conversation I'm guessing she'd like me to be 15-20 minutes early and I just want to make her happy, but I wish she'd just tell me what she wants sometimes! I do this sometimes too, this beating around the bush. I'm working at being more direct and this crazy-making conversation makes me even more determined to do so. So, I'll be driving up with my future mother and sister in law and showing up early, but not too early. Heh. I've just gotta laugh. I get all uncomfortable with the focus on me, so this will be a nice, but tiring day. And I'm sure I'll come home with my arms full of new towels and kitchen appliances and maybe some lingerie. ;-)

Hyper Adrenaline Loopdie Loops

August 23rd, 2007, Comments (7)

Up wayyyy too late last night, fiddling around with this and that. I'm all hyped up about this weekend with the fiansor's family visiting and my bridal shower on Saturday, plus I had a wedding dress fitting today and dropped off eight "Subway Stories" pieces for the show at Nahcotta (which is going to be so great! more on that later.) I just wanted to drop in to show you the latest in the Subway Stories series.

The top one is "Central Square" and is 8"x10" with acrylic and collage on panel. And the second is "Longwood" and it's 6"x6" with acrylic and collage on panel. Both of these were named after particular subway stops. Longwood was the stop closest to where I went to college (hence the artist with the big portfolio) and it's also the stop closest to the hospital district of town, where I spent much time as a child with all my (now resolved) kidney/bladder issues. Not fun. So, that stop is a weird mix of memories for me. Central Square is a real funky place in Cambridge, just a stop away from Harvard Square. It has an odd mix of stores and a diverse mix of people. I particularly love it because of the two great art stores there and the club where I had one of my very first shows.

Heh, I just noticed, I can see my signature in these. It took me a long time to remember to sign my work. And in this case, I remembered to do so because I knew I was taking them to a gallery. I've always tried to make my signature small and inconspicuous. I don't want my name to interfere with the art. But I've had people have to remind me to sign my art before (and after) I sell it, so I'm trying to be better about that. Ahem. I've got issues.

Anyways! I got 90% of the invites out the door today. Whew! What a relief that was! The remaining ones are going to some of the fiansor's relatives (mostly in Greece) who won't come, but we'll send the invite anyways. So, I need to go and get special postage for those. And there are a still a couple friends who seem intent on not giving me their addresses. Grr. And the dress fitting...I've had such issues with the dress. I bought it after trying on sooo many. Spent more than I was planning to, but got a good deal as it was a sample dress. It needed some major fitting work and when I tried it on at the first fitting I got a little spooked that it wasn't going to come together well and that I'd look like a sparkly disaster. Well, today was the second fitting and the bodice part fit perfectly. It allowed me, for the first time, to see what my dress will truly look like on me (without clamps all over the place). The hips need to be taken in, the hem has to come up some, but it's coming together. And she also began to pin my bustle. Who knew I would care about these things, but I had a particular kind of bustle in mind and the seamstress, without my saying a word, suggested just the one I wanted and pinned it so I could see what it would look like and oh, yay, it's awesome. So, joy of joys, I feel thrilled about my dress. The fiansor couldn't understand why it was so important to me, saying I'll look beautiful no matter what (insert awwws). But I want to "feel" beautiful. Know what I mean? So, I'm thrilled that I felt beautiful. Now, I just need to figure out this hair debacle and we'll be all set with the beauty side of things.

What a big to-do this wedding stuff is! Ack! Ok, I've got more fun stories about my trip north today, but they'll have to wait as I'm off for a quick dinner with a friend who I haven't seen in ages. (I'm a terrible hermit of a friend.) Ciao for now.

The Process of De-Funking

August 21st, 2007, Comments (16)

I woke up in such a funk this morning. I think it was sunny out, but my head seemed gray and gloomy. The turn to darker days always takes a bit of a toll on me. I went in to town to do some errands and consciously tried to lift my spirits, breathing deeply and noticing all that was lovely in and around me. It helped.

Got some work done, took Sadie to the vet for her check-up (she's a little heavier, my neighbor calls her "fat raccoon", but overall she's a healthy 10 year old kitty), brought Sadie home (after which she darted under the bed and didn't come out for a few hours (dinner, of course, brought her out of hiding) and it seems she's forgiven me for taking her to get poked and prodded. The fiansor is out late with his business partner which was good timing because of my late start today and having some work to do.

Some art for you...This is from last night. And it's a great example of making art when you don't necessarily feel like it before you start (it was just lovely to play with caran d'ache once I got started) and also of how doodles can lead to something more. During the day yesterday, I was daydreaming a bit and doodling while listening to a podcast. I doodled and scribbled and saw the figure of a woman, who became a tree, who became this piece of art, which is about 10"x11" with caran d'ache on watercolor paper. I'm calling her, "Mother Earth" for now, but I also think of her as "Spring" and something else that hasn't quite come to me yet.

And then another piece of the "Subway Stories" series. This one, I struggled with the name, but decided on calling it "Copley" after a stop in town that I think of as a kind of center. This piece is 8"x8" with acrylic and paper collaged on cradled wood board.

I had some cool experiences while painting tonight. Little bits that I just love. In the cup of water which I used for my brushes, I was wiping the brush on the inside of the cup a bit to get a touch of water on a brush with paint on it and when I looked inside the cup, I noticed that one of the wipes made a very distinct face of a smiling fox. Hehe, love that! So, I painted the fox on a piece of scrap paper so I could remember him. And then within the painting, one brush stroke, very much resembled the shape of a bird, which gave me an idea for a painting which I scribbled down on another piece of scrap paper to remember for later. I love finding impressions of an image in odd places. Sometimes they are quite distinct and other times just a suggestion of a form, but they're great sparks for later creative adventures. Inspiration seems to be everywhere if my antennas are tuned in to the proper station. Love it.

Mindless Doodling and Rambling

August 20th, 2007, Comments (19)

One of the tricks of doing art every day for a period of time (at least this works for me) is to loosen your idea of what art is. Lots of things lead to art, including play and scribbling and experimenting and making a royal mess. Hehe. This comes in particularly handy on days with time constraints with lots going on and not a lot of energy or time left over for creating. Saturday was busy and I wasn't feeling great, so in order to keep creating, I needed to simplify. I took out a watercolor pad and some new nibs (for calligraphy) and played. I had purchased some new nibs for addressing my wedding invitations and needed to play with them first. And my general exhaustion after a long day was calling for some mindless doodling. The writing here was just what popped out.

Last night, after addressing many invitations and my mind a pile of mush, I pulled out one of those little plastic box of watercolors and played. I was inspired to play with watercolors by this week's Inspire Me Thursday challenge. I'm bummed I didn't get to the DNA one from the week before, but I'll get to it eventually. This watercolor below was the result of some play. Just laying down color on wet paper. The two big forms of color suggested fall trees and I went with that. Fall is definitely in the air.

The invitations look lovely and I'll share those later. I had a hair and make-up trial on Saturday. The make-up was great and the hair wasn't so great, so I'm in a bit of a pickle as to what to do about that. Hire someone else? Go back for another hair trial? Well, I guess that's why we have a trial. Rumph.

I've got a few more Subway Stories pieces in the works, gotta varnish and prep the finished ones for hanging and then take them off to a gallery on Thursday when I'm up in NH for a wedding dress fitting. I may be saying this ridiculously often, but I can't believe how close the wedding is! Ack! Less than two months! (It's Saturday, Oct. 13th, by the way.)

Lots to get done and so I'm off...like a fall leaf riding the wind, like a suit at the end of the day, like the t.v. late at night, like a horse at the races, like the months that scream by the older you get.

You Know What this Blog Needs? More Cowbell? No, more Subway Art!

August 17th, 2007, Comments (19)

Another in the Subway Series. This one, "D Line" is 8"x10" with acrylic and collage on cradled wood board. The stories here are written in the shadows.

Raging migraine today. But still got some business done. Inspired by my class with Alyson Stanfield and the lovely Tammy, I'm taking baby steps to get my art info organized. I'm using a neat system called Flick and so far so good!

A big thank you to Kara at Spritdoll for the Blogging Reflection Award and to Karen at Zazazu for her newly created Uplift Award which I will pass on soon. Many thanks gals! I really appreciate it. :-)

I wish you a wonderfully creative weekend!

Art and Other Details

August 17th, 2007, Comments (10)

Here's another subway piece. This one is smaller, 6"x6". Cute, eh? Another in the Subway Stories series, called "Orange Line." I've got more in process, but here's one for now.

Doing my best to not feel overwhelmed at the moment. I feel a little behind the 8 ball and I've got a lot goin on. Wedding invitations came in and they're gorgeous. I'll post pictures at a later date. Saturday morning I have a hair and make-up trial. I'm so hopeless with make-up so I need the help. All the sudden the wedding is getting really, really close! Eeks! My shower is next weekend and I'll be doing a very relaxed bachelorette party (something like paint your own pottery with some girlfriends). I'm working on a bunch of projects and trying to just keep breathing and keep approaching it all with calm and steady baby steps. It will all get done.

Spent the day with my best friend and her new baby, putting together invitations and stamping envelopes, and cooing over a cute baby face. :-) I feel body, mind, soul tired. Time for bed!