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?
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.
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.
Noodler’s Bulletproof Black, Lexy Grey ink and Daniel Smith watercolors on a 11×14 Canson Multi-media pad. 11 February, 2013. Windham, Maine.
This beautiful, misty/rainy/icy morning has me wanting to go into the woods. The birds are acting like it’s spring (it’s not) and the scent on the air tells me crocus should be poking up from the garden beds (they aren’t). I long for a good, old-fashioned snow storm with cement quality snow. The type of snow that’s perfect for clomping around in snow shoes, making snowmen and carving out cozy snow forts. And of course it’s great for creating snow pile racing courses.
The ground is bare in spots and icy mud is rearing its ugly head in our nachtmare driveway. The sights and sensations of this late January weather pattern are so alluring that I almost don’t resent that this isn’t a full-on snow storm. Almost.