Wednesday, July 9, 2008

New Moleskin "Muddle"

I bought a new watercolor Moleskin a couple weekends ago while visiting a dear friend on Vancouver island.  My intent is to have a sketchbook for all my "quick and dirty" sketches - you know, something to drag around always to record just any ol' thing and keep me sketching regularly to hone my skills, and just for the joy of it.  And yet as I sat staring at the first blank page of this beautiful new little book, I hesitated, not wanting to "ruin it" with some crappy drawing.  Ah....there it is again - focus on outcome.  Even when I don't want to do that and I know how paralyzing that focus can be.  "Process, not outcome", I tell myself!  We artistic types do seem to be our own worst critics.  Take for instance my friend whom I was visiting....she is an extraordinary painter!! I have a few of her pieces gracing my walls and I LOVE them.  Here are a couple: (my photos don't do the colors justice at all)

 Sadly she hasn't painted in ages.  Mostly because she is legitimately very busy with other things, but even when she took time off to paint she had real difficulty allowing herself to do so.  All kinds of reasons surfaced: other pressing tasks, no passion for a subject, room not set up, no supportive community of artistic friends, etc, etc.  And, an overactive critical voice that did not support her to mess up a canvas - that's my opinion of course....we really haven't discussed it at length because I don't want to pester her.  But, I do know she can be a perfectionist.  I know this because I can be paralyzed by the same affliction - it's familiar to me.  I'm sure she will die should she see this posted here, but I love to show off her work - I know she won't.  And I do want to shout to her - PAINT, PAINT!!....just for the joy of it - without evaluation and judgment.  Instead I hold her in my heart silently praying for the day she will allow herself to be lost in process without care of outcome.
Hmmmm....what we hope for others is indeed what we most need to heed ourselves - at least it is for me in this case as I stare at the blank pages of a fresh little moleskin.  Can we/I listen to the same encouraging voice we/I offer to our/my friends?
And so....I have to credit the inspiration of Margaret Storer-Roche with her post "A Line".  She introduced me to the concept of "Zentangles".  It reminds me of the Doodleart posters I colored as a kid.  So..."doodling on steroids", or perhaps in this case more accurately "doodling on Valium."  I do enjoy anything that puts me in a meditative "flow" state.  And this definitely does it.  I can't get too hung up on outcome since the outcome creates itself spontaneously.  So, this seemed like just the thing to help me christen the new Moleskin without interference from my critical ego.  My first couple pages:
So now that my lovely Moleskin is broken in, I can get on with the business of actual sketching, and just in time....I'm off to my folks cabin in Northern Saskatchewan for a vacation with my family and lots of time to relax and indulge in creative things.  Happy July!

Friday, July 4, 2008

Rainbow Dots

I haven't put together any jewelry pieces for awhile, but I was playing around with a variety of colors and made a bunch of sample beads to see how they looked over black. They were sitting on my work bench crying out for a new life and so I strung them into this fun bracelet. I'm finding it actually goes with lots of my clothes. I just like that it has a happy feel with all these wonderful bright dots!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Le Cadeau Du Chaval - Final Painting

I finished my panel in the mural mosaic currently being assembled.  Can't say that I'm completely happy with it.  There are parts I really like and other parts I would absolutely do over if I had more time.  But, that's not the case so this will be the final version.  My "before" image is located a few posts ago.  Can't wait to see the final mural.  As always it is an amazing thing and I'm honored to be a part of this collaborative project.  See the assembly in real time here.

Sketchcrawl Airdrie - June 21/08

Well, we did it! And, it was a WE....not just me. A couple friends and I and our kids converged on Benjamin's Coffee House right on schedule and painted and drew our little hearts out! So, we've now joined the rest of the world in this regular event. And, by all accounts we will do this again. Everyone said how much they enjoyed the relaxing time we had.

Veronica with her itty-bitty paint box continued her "painting-a-day" process. You can see the paintings she did on our crawl here. (and her next two posts as well.)

Veronica and her daughter busy painting and drawing in Nose Creek Park, our second and final stop on the crawl.

Examining the pochade. The little thing really is an attention getter - so cute and compact.

Me...hard at work...if you can call it that! Just busy playing really.

My final sketch at the park.
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