Art Journals, sketches, TV sketches, watercolors. Read: guilty pleasures, fixations and obsessions.

Posts tagged “art journals

The “Unwatch” Option

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The Governor to Milton: “You kill or you die. Or you die and you kill.”
Pentel Pocket Brush Pen and watercolor on 9×12″ 400 Series Strathmore hardbound sketchbook.

Ugh, I was worried that the dream Goddess would punish me with zombie dreams if I watched the season 3 finale of The Walking Dead right before going to bed last night. The Governor is one messed up unit and without spoiling the outcome, the character no longer has a shred of pathos intact after what he did in that episode. I sketched with my new Pentel Pocket Brush Pen, with which I have obviously not developed a working relationship. Rough sketch above! Need to keep sketching with it to learn its nuances.

On the subject of dreams, watching last night’s show doesn’t explain the dream that I did have: In it, I was a feudal Japanese house servant/wife, complete with a filthy floor, a smoky kitchen, a cranky mother-in-law and an oafish, arse-scratching husband. The family did own a beautiful exotic wood desk that had two big drawers, each of which had its own key. Needless to say, I did not possess the keys to the desk and during the dream I was intensely absorbed in fantasy about the contents of those drawers.

If I could “unwatch” last night’s tv show, I would select that option. I hope the bloody mess that was The Walking Dead season closer won’t enter my dreams.


Because I’m the Leprechaun!

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Noodler’s Bulletproof black, watercolor pencils, watercolors on A5 Moleskine watercolor journal.
16 March, 2013. Windham, ME.

Wish I’d bought two of these punching Leprechaun pens at the dime store last month, because I gave this to the hostess at her St. Patrick’s Day party last Saturday. (Great party, though!) Every time I look at the face on this sketch, I think of the comedian Chris Rock. Come to think of it, he does kind of remind me of a Leprechaun, somehow.

And then my mind goes down the association tunnel and quickly lands on a certain Saturday Night Live skit involving Wayne, Garth and a flashlight.


The Eyes Have It

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From last fall’s TV sketching obsession, this is CW’s Supernatural Archangel Castiel in the midst of smiting the devilish Crowley with his laser-blue eyes. Noodler’s Bulletproof Black and watercolor on 11×14″ Canson Mixed Media Pad. 14 Nov. 2012.

Last night, I just couldn’t fall asleep. Tossed, turned, counted backward from 100 several times and never once nodded off. Oh, I was tired enough to sleep. Yes, I was. And no, I didn’t consume caffeine or the like after noon yesterday. What I did was teach an early evening yoga class that ended at 7:30 p.m. Sleeplessness after teaching has happened to me before. I also get this skimming consciousness after practicing a pranayama, or breathing exercise, called Nadi Shodhana. I’ve casually queried my yogini friends and nobody else admits to this experience. Maybe this was a spontaneous Yoga Nidra experience? Naaaa. I feel refreshed and alert after Yoga Nidra, quite the opposite of how I feel at the moment.

Today I will have to endure feeling … and looking … like this sketch of poor old red-eyed, dry-lipped and sleep-deprived Castiel.


Lunar Delicacies

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Pencil, Bulletproof black ink, water soluble crayons, acrylics, acrylic inks and watercolor on an 11×14 Canson mixed media pad. 3 March 2013. Windham, Maine.

This sketch is the first rough study of the illustration I envision for my sci-fi short story, Blame, which is based on a dream I had in the late 1990s.

First, I did a cut and paste Photoshop file and the more I look at it, the more I think that it should be the illustration not something I draw or paint. But, I love drooling over the depression glass pieces and think it would be fun to include portraits of the “lunar delicacies” I have in my own china cabinets in the eventual painting.

For me, in this case, it’s more process than product. I can’t wait to set up some of the glassware my mother gave me and start drawing and painting them.


Earthlight

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Acrylics on 8×10″ canvas board. There are probably a half-dozen abandoned, gessoed over paintings under this one. Windham, ME. 2 March 2013

Still feeling my way around with acrylic paints — I started this right after gessoing over an awful self-portrait. It was dusk outside and the clouds were striated and slightly illuminated (from God knows what, we haven’t really seen a sunset in days!) This started out being a “serious” study of the poplars on the Presumpscot River bank behind the house, but then I added the moon and it evolved into an earth-like planet.

I wrote a sci-fi short story called “Blame” which stemmed from a dream I had years ago where I was stranded on the Moon (yes, that was some dream…) and was sifting through piles of beautiful depression glass. In the dream, I could see the Earth looming in space but the piles of sugary glass were even more compelling. Hmmm. Maybe my next not-so-serious study subject?


Angel on My Shoulder

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Angst, pencil and Daniel Smith watercolors in 3.5×5.5″ Moleskine watercolor
notebook. Mirror self-portrait, Windham, Maine. 19 Feb. 2013.

Feeling restless this winter. Don’t want to go to bed at a reasonable hour and don’t want to get out of bed in the morning because I stayed up too late. Activities that usually got me to spring out of bed weren’t motivation enough anymore. I was feeling mopey and sluggish and looking grey faced and haggard. I’ve gotten winter depression before, but it snuck up on me this year and hit me like a ton of bricks.

Tuesday morning the angel on my shoulder must have whispered into my ear, because all at once I thought, “Ah-hah! It’s Seasonal Affective Disorder!” This explained my arty dry spell; I needed to use my neglected stash of pencils, pens, ink and beautiful watercolors to find my way back. Before I had even brushed my teeth, I was looking in the mirror and scratching out a self portrait. I saw evidence of my state of mind. When I looked at the finished sketch again Tuesday afternoon, I felt like the spell was broken. I’d nudged my downward spiral upward and outward just by picking up my tiny Moleskine watercolor notebook and a pencil.

Thankfully, I’m much better now. Realizing that I am experiencing symptoms of S.A.D. seems to be half the battle for me. I’m trying every trick in the book to claw my way toward spring with a genuine smile on my face: Yoga, meditation, chocolate, extra Vitamin D3, drinking plenty of water and — most importantly  for me — continuing to express my feelings with art supplies.


Dry Spell

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Noodler’s Lexy Grey ink and Daniel Smith watercolors on a 11×14 Canson Multi-media pad.
20 January, 2013. Windham, Maine.

Fringe is over. American Horror Story Asylum is done. Aside from the Winchester Bros., there’s no tv show I’m watching currently that is snagging my sketching eye. Although I am keeping up with The Walking Dead, I don’t exactly feel like focusing on zombie eyeballs and nasty ooze closely enough to render it on paper. Not so much. Mostly, I’m moping around because it’s the middle of winter, my hands feel like scratchy sandpaper and I’m feeling fussy.

Although the drawings I’ve made over the past couple of weeks have been okay, but I seem to be in an imagination dry spell. Nothing’s really satisfying me. I’ll go so far as to settle on a subject, select a sketchbook to make an entry in, open the book and uncap my lovely Lamy Joy 1.1mm filled with Noodler’s Lexy Grey … and then I hesitate. Nope. My attention span just isn’t strong enough to dedicate sufficient energy to fill a sketchbook page. I made a ho-hum attempt on Super Bowl Sunday, scratching in and dropping color onto a snack table sketch earlier in February. But, blah, maybe it was the sound of football: that sketch will not be given air time. If I didn’t kind of like the sketch on the other side of that page, I’d excise it from the book and recycle it.

Last month, just as my restless feelings were taking root, these pretty tea cups that my mom let me have caught my eye and fairly demanded a sketch. I remember these cups from when I was a child (but not allowed to touch!) and they make me smile just looking at them. I thought sketching them would break the spell, but after I splashed the images onto the page, I slapped the book shut and didn’t do anything else in it until I made myself draw my desk and everything on it just as it was, without arranging things so they’d be more compelling. Sigh. I even Googled “writer’s block” and came up with an EFT video to clear stuck energy. Maybe I should give that a go.

I trust that inspiration is building, just as I am noticing that the winter is waning. I’ll spend my time on the numerous other projects I’ve been neglecting and allow my sketchy muse her space.

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Noodler’s Bulletproof Black, Lexy Grey ink and Daniel Smith watercolors on a 11×14 Canson Multi-media pad. 11 February, 2013. Windham, Maine.