Tuesday, December 29, 2009

End of the year and works in progress

The year is coming to an end. I am excited for the new year. I am ready for the mental 'fresh start' although until I organize all my paperwork, I won't feel caught up yet.
The last couple of days have been a bit lazy (as they should be during the holiday!) and I am feeling anxious about teaching. I DO like teaching, and I know things will (should be) fine but I am not used to this much responsibility yet. I realize that I have never been good about working for others, except for the independent book store I worked at before going to England. (Viewpoint in Columbus, IN.) Books make me happy. Doing art and Research makes me happy. I am still constantly searching for the perfect 'job' for me, and I have a feeling I won't find it until I am able to support myself on my own creations.
Lets hope 2009 brings not only productivity, but also a financial boost. (I think everyone is wishing for that last one!)

Moving on to works in progress:
I'm not exact on the size as it is not in front of me currently (I think its a bit larger than 14" x 17"). I started this with the idea of making it like my sketchbook. I let it sit untouched for a few months, unsatisfied with the results. Recently (after realizing my new love of pastel colors and cross-hatch brush strokes) I decided to give it a wash of colors.... and NOW I am excited!

Here is a closeup:

I am enjoying the variety of colors and paint effects.
I am keeping things random and I'm not sure where to take it next. At least I crossed over the first obstacle!
Christmas was small and wonderful. D and I played a lot of games with the family: Contract Rummy (a traditional fave), Blockus: Trigon, Fill or Bust, and Scrutineyes. We all found good gifts for eachother despite everyone feeling the tight strings of the economy. Best of all, we were able to enjoy eachother's company. I wish we had been able to see everyone - and hopefully we can visit D's family in the spring.
Thats all for now! I'll be working on my 'resolutions' soon.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The Weird Alphabet and recent inspirations

The Weird Alphabet!
I have started a new series, spinning off from my other new series!
The weird alphabet! This idea has given me an artistic boundary to work within, and allows me to explore my long dormant love of RESEARCH! Thinking about letters, I also wrote a very naughty alphabet poem, but I will keep that secret for now.

The most recent of the new alphabet series is C = Cacophony

"A = Ambiguity" and "B = Blissful" as well as the rest of the new series (sans alphabetical meaning) can be seen on my website under "Sketch-Panel Series"

Recent Happenings and Inspirations

As its December, I will express my love of my favorite Rankin/Bass Christmas special. "The Life and Adventures of Santa Clause". Its one of the most bizarre and beautiful and somewhat pagan Rankin/Bass special, and it RARELY gets played on television. I watched the whole thing on youtube a few days ago - but alas, I checked today to show someone else and it has been removed due to copyright issues. I believe this special should be available somewhere, as it is so rare and most of the people I talk to have never heard of it! Do not be fooled by the animated version (ok, but not as hauntingly interesting) - find the CLAYMATION Rankin/Bass version. I own the movie, and the book - I just realized I have not read the book yet. Check it on IMDB. By the way, even though that is my one true favorite special, I am a fan of all rankin/bass productions (that I've seen so far) - including the wonderful "The Last Unicorn"

Fine art: last Thursday, when I lectured about contemporary art, I realized that I hardly own any books or magazines about 'fine art' - I mainly collect fantasy and horror illustrative art - including periods of art history usually gleamed over quickly in general art history books, if mentioned at all (symbolism, romanticism, pre-raphaelites and sentimental Victorian art, and going further back to Bosch, Bruegel, and any artist that focused on darker and fantastic themes). I am hoping to expand my art book collection now to be more inclusive. (Like I need any more books. for the past year, I have had piles on the floor because I ran out of bookshelf space.) Speaking of books, I recently picked up one of my favorite books that I had never finished previously : "Color: A natural history of the Palette" by Victoria Finlay -written as a travel journal, a woman's quest to find the meaning behind colors.

That is all for now. As usual, I am desperately available for commissions, etc.
This Friday: I will be vending some art at a club event called "Sanctuary" at the Melody Inn Reception Hall, Indianapolis, IN.
This Thursday will be the last day of my very first university teaching job. Its been a tough start, but I think I like it. If I can keep up with the grading.