Friday, January 23, 2015

Inspiration Wednesday

I am suddenly obsessed. I now have 4 art journals going. Well, there are 2 more on the shelf but I haven't done anything in them for quite some time, so I am not going to count them. This is a smaller Dylusions journal, approximately 6x9 inches.

Starting the first Wednesday of this year, I joined Donna Downey's Inspiration Wednesday online class. It was only $35 for the year, and she is posting whatever she is doing in her journal every other Wednesday. This week was collage, with added paint and molding paste. I used molding paste, Donna used heavy gesso, which I don't own. Here is MY deal: I am trying, really trying to use whatever I have on hand, and not get into the madness of buying. Buying art and craft supplies is kind of like being addicted to some strange drug. Once is never satisfying, you must have more. And then more, and it isn't pretty. Soon you are in the aisles at Hobby Lobby, drool dripping off your chin.

The whole point of Inspiration Wednesday is to experiment with products, thoughts, combinations on paper so you can see what works and what doesn't. This spread could easily be translated onto a larger canvas, and I am thinking of doing exactly that this coming week. Ms. Downey is opening up my thinking on color combinations, and it's always fun to discover something new and exciting.

Have a great day, and thanks for stopping by.

Monday, January 19, 2015

I Must Rant

I have wanted to see the movie, The Imitation Game, starring Benedict Cumberbatch since it was released. For the first few weeks it was only available at the north end of Indianapolis, and that time period being around the holidays I was not venturing into the heart of crazy shoppers. You know. Every metro area has a crazy shopper destination. It's like driving in a bumper car.

Yesterday I checked the times, and made the decision to go at 1:25. To sooth my guilt over leaving the brats alone for all of 2.5 hours, I took them to the dog park for a good, muddy, wet hour long romp. This was after cleaning the house. Yeah, I know. My brains were on a holiday.

I am one of those people who actually take my cell phone out and put it on "mute" mode as soon as my ass hits the theater chair. It's called being considerate. If I am with someone, we speak in muted tones because that is the polite way to conduct yourself inside a movie theater. Should someone make unnecessary noise during a film, I will first try a dirty look, then make a pointed comment. Nice, but pointed. I carry a combination lock in my purse for when I teach at the recreation center. Don't make me swing the Coach bag at your head.

Sitting to my right were a mother and daughter. They were not young. Mom had to be in her late 70's, possibly 80. Daughter was at least in her late 40's. AND THEY WERE TALKING LIKE THIS. For the entire 10 minutes leading up to the movie. People were clearing their throats so loudly I thought they would hemorrhage something. When these two idiots finally calmed down, a slew of late comers started up the stairs trying to find seats. One was an older couple, where the wife immediately sat down and her husband wasn't watching, or just didn't care and started to climb the steps further. Now we have the wife yelling, "George! Down here!", while George, unsure of himself in the dark, is holding onto a railing yelling, "What?". The movie had started, the theater is crowded, and three of us had risen to grab George and take him to his wife, when the mother/daughter duo performed that act.

Then talked about it.

Aside from missing the first 5 minutes, kind of, or not being able to hear it, I have to give this movie five stars and tell everyone not to miss it. It takes place in Britain from 1928 to 1951, but of course is applicable to our society as well. I despise bullies. This story will make you cry.

Have a good one.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Random Thoughts

Jake. Do not move, mom. Ever.

Perhaps you need one of these?

Week Two of The Documented Life
I do believe I will live. It was questionable there for awhile.

On the alternating days where I did feel good, I ventured out for short trips last week. One was to Hobby Lobby. The store was having a 50% off sale on furniture, storage units, the type of stuff you don't really need but talk yourself into. Yep. I do it, and I admit it. Cathy loves the color pink, in all shades, but really loves it in that deep shade. I saw the shelves, snapped a pic, and sent it to her in a text. She responded that she had already been to Hobby Lobby, and saw all of the "pink stuff". I do this to her all the time. Oddly enough, she never takes my shopping advice. A thought to ponder. I do my best to tempt her with photographs.

As mentioned before, we are both following the 2015 Documented Life Project. It's free, and if you are interested, there is a group on Facebook, and a blog. This group of talented ladies are offering a wealth of information and techniques on art journaling.  Each week a different challenge is presented. Week Two was using gesso, which is the primer for pages. It is basically white acrylic paint. I have lost track what artist has said this, I think it was Donna Downey, but gesso is the underwear to your project. Nice. So the above is the spread I came up with in-between trips to the bathroom. The colors made me happy, and trust me, there was little else bringing a smile to my face last week.

Saw a movie last night. Foxcatcher. It's the story of Mark and David Schultz, Olympic wrestlers, and the relationship with John DuPont. I didn't particularly like it, just went because my friend wanted to go, and I wanted to get out of the house. Creepy movie, super creepy man, and overall depressing. Again, oddly enough, it made me feel better. One of those, "See? Your life could be worse!" moments.

Enjoy your Sunday. Watch football. Or not.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

A Rotten Flu/Bug Season

Jake wants to be as close to mom as he can get. So he is on me.
I had a flu shot at my annual exam in September. The doctor assured me that it wasn't too early in the season, and that that shot would carry me through. Perhaps she was correct, perhaps not. I have yet to develop the cold/bronchitis type flu. But. Yeah, but. Let's talk about the latest stomach bug.

Holy Shit. And yes, that is exactly what you will do. Not to be too graphic here, but my exercise for the past 6 days has been running to the bathroom. No fever, no nausea, just horrendous diarrhea and stabbing pains. Kind of like you ate a window for a snack, and your body is now trying to digest the glass. And this isn't the influenza, or anything that can be prevented. It is just the latest transformation of a bug that invades your intestinal track. It is not a nice bug.

Yesterday I finally became really concerned, and called the doctor's office. Spoke with a very nice nurse, who sounded stressed. One can only imagine being a nurse in a family doctor's office during one of the worse flu seasons ever. She told me it probably was this current bug, to eat yogurt for the probiotics, bananas, and toast. Dosing my body with Immodium, I ventured to the store and stocked up.

I am now a believer. I consumed a individual container of yogurt when I arrived home, and realized a few hours later, hey! I feel better. Have had 2 more, and I do believe I will live. It was questionable for awhile. The two nurses who hovered over me for the past week agree.

They were no help whatsoever. Just so you know.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Spoiled Rotten Brats

Gracie, to my right

Jake, to my left
Last night I was sitting on the bed watching television. Jake was to my right, his head resting on my leg, enjoying a gentle massage around his head. Gracie sat on the floor and starting "talking" to me. This usually means she wants to go out, but they had just been in the backyard, so I told her to come up on the bed and settle down. After a few minutes of this, she did jump up and sat down on her brother. The startled look on Jake's face was priceless. He promptly got up and went to my left side, reclining against the pillows. Gracie immediately stretched out in his spot. This has never happened before, and I was laughing my ass off.  It appears the alpha/beta roles are being reversed again.

I love dogs. You can learn so much. Life is never dull.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Here we go again

It's January. That time of year where we all start new projects. New eating regimens. An exercise program. So of course my friend Cathy and I are once again enrolled in the Documented Life project. Of course we are.

The Documented Life Project has been evolving on the net for the past few years. It is four artists who are friends, and lend their talents to the 'verse for free. If you are interested, please visit their blog here. You can register for the academy, and for emails concerning the weekly posts. What is this? It is free (always nice) prompts and demos on art journals. For example, each individual artist posted a video on their individual blogs this past week for the first journal entry. The prompt was to use book (actually any text) paper, and the phrase "Be Your Own Goal Keeper".

This year we are using the Dyan Reavley large journal. You can use whatever you like, but of course because it's Cathy and Linda, we had to spend money on new art supplies. I bought one journal yesterday to get started (my other two were full), and a second journal is on order. One of the artists, Lorraine Bell, demonstrated a black pencil called Blackwing. We had never heard of this, so Cathy found it on Amazon. 22 pencils are on order, because hey! one can never have enough pencils and that was the way to get a deal.

Cathy is now intrigued with the new paint line by Dina Wakley for Ranger products. I have one tube of this paint and yeah, it's pretty neat. I like it. But I also have 68 bottles of craft paint, 14 tubes of a slightly better quality of acrylic paint, and 20 bottles of Golden paint, which is expensive and my favorite. Various other brands are mixed in. How much paint do I need? A rhetorical question, because I know damn well paint will be purchased or ordered shortly. It's the way we roll.

This is my hobby. This is also somewhat of an obsession. There are stacks of blank canvases, containers of paper products, baskets of punches, die cuts, bags of alphabets, drawers of stamps and stamp pads. Speaking of which, I watched a demo on Youtube on how to carve your own stamps. So I tried it. So easy. I can see how this could become an addiction. The part I didn't like was using the stamp I carved. I had ink everywhere because you don't have a lot to hold onto. Will that stop me? No, of course not.

My drafting table is set up next to the north window. The only window.

Uh huh. No surface untouched.


The 2015 art journal front cover

The back cover
 In my defense, it is only the dogs and I living in the house. I close the door when I'm done for the day, and rarely leave the door open. I have quite unintentionally locked dogs in this bedroom. There is a feeling of freedom to be able to physically close the door on the mess, and know that it will be untouched until I return.

So. Does it appear I need more supplies? No. It does not. Will that stop me/us? Nope. In fact, there are two packages in transit to Cathy's house. She is practicing restraint. If she wasn't, there would be 5 packages in transit. Trust me, I have been down this road before. It's always nice to lose your mind with a friend....

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year

Bella March 2014

Siberian Iris May 2014

Cleveland, Lake Erie July 2014
Nauvoo IL
Mississippi River south of Nauvoo, IL
Nauvoo, IL
The Brats - taking over the king size bed

Cleveland Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

It has been an enlightening year for me. Realizing limitations with my physical self. Knowing what is important and what isn't,  and letting go of what doesn't really matter in the long run. Here's hoping 2015 is a year of growth, contentment, and happiness.