Monday, April 30

reunion

Today I saw one of the cutest things: a horse reunion. Why was this cute? Let me give you some background:

We have 2 horses at our house: Midnight and Ope. Midnight is a "regular" horse, and Ope is a miniature. They are very good friends...or it looks like they are to me. They are always together in the pasture and enjoy running around together. Yesterday Ope got loaded up into the trailer to make a trip to the blacksmith. (He was having some foot issues I guess.) Well, Midnight was NOT happy about this. He ran around by the fence and made lots of noise. (If he had reared up on his back legs it would have looked like a scene from Black Beauty.)

Today Midnight was still carrying on: running around, making loud noises, etc. I happened to be home for lunch when Andrew's dad Max brought Ope home. I was glad I got to see the horse reunion: Midnight perked up at the sight of his little friend. As soon as Ope made it back to the pasture the two horses took off running and playing as usual. I am so glad that Ope is home because I didn't think I could take much more of Midnight's seperation anxiety!

Thursday, April 26

vision

I read a really good article about dreams and visions in the May issue of Real Simple magazine. Here's a little excerpt:

"Nothing really big, bold, or beautiful was ever created in a country, in a company, in a family, or in a life without a clear picture of what it would look like, of how it would be. Walt Disney was well aware of this when he created the Magic Kingdom, in Florida. It's said that he told the executives planning the theme park to 'build the castle first.' The castle was where the magic would be, and Disney seemed to think that if the designers, the engineers, and the workers had the castle to look at for inspiration, they could do all the hard stuff it would take to bring the Magic Kingdom to life."

For some reason this really struck me: it is one thing to have big dreams, but to see it through it really takes vision. It left me wondering: what is the "castle" for me, my family, my life?

Wednesday, April 25

drawings



Here are some little drawings I did of my pretty tulips. I hadn't sat down and just drawn something in a long time. It is such good practice to just do a little drawing for its own sake: not for a painting, not for a larger artwork. Drawing just to draw.

Sometimes I forget that drawing was my first artistic "love"...I was a drawing specialization in college even. It seemed like everyone else was pursuing more exotic options like ceramics and painting, but I chose to dig into this very fundamental media. I have thoughts that maybe I should just draw--put watercolor to the side for a while and go back to what I first loved. It is an idea...

Tuesday, April 24

tulips


I wanted to share a pretty picture of some tulips that my mother-in-law gave me yesterday. Aren't they pretty? She said that they were not doing so good in her flower bed due to the cold, so she wanted me to enjoy them while they lasted. It was a nice treat to get some flowers on a Monday!

Monday, April 23

donatello stops by...


One of my art students brought by her newest friend...a tiny baby turtle named Donatello. (How appropriate that Donatello would come to the art studio...since the original Donatello was a famous artist. This is not why he was named this, I was informed. It was after one of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles--which I guess are making a comeback.) Donatello also made the rounds to kindergarten show and tell today where he was a huge hit.

I remember being a kid and finding a little nature treasure like this and being so happy. My brother and I found several baby bunnies one summer that we tried to nurture to adulthood. It never worked and they always died shortly after we found them. I am sure that turtles are much hartier than bunnies and that Donatello will grow and thrive.

I sure hope so anyway!

Thursday, April 19

yellow post-its everywhere


I have always loved making lists...especially to-do lists. Currently I am keeping all my to-do lists on these "super sticky" lined post-its. (I think if you are a list person, you also tend to love post-its!) These post-its are everywhere: on the computer, in my calendar, on my desk and in my sketchbook. Even though I love both to-do lists and post-its, I think I am starting to be overwhelmed by them:

I now have lists for here at the studio, lists for home, lists for things to remember, lists of ideas, lists of things to do before the baby gets here, shopping lists, etc. A fraction of what I put on the list actually gets done, then at the end of the day I am disappointed in myself.

Even though I usually set myself up for failure with all my lists I think I will continue to make them for the simple fact that nothing beats the satisfaction of actually getting to cross something off of it!

Wednesday, April 18

oh man


We are in the process of major reconstruction here at the Leaning Tower of Pisa...I mean studio. I had some major leakage in my back work and storage areas so a new roof was in order. It is looking very bad out there at the moment, and it is very interesting inside as small things keep falling through the ceiling. I keep telling myself that someday it will all be worth it, and the building will be watertight and beautiful.

In the meantime I may have my art students wear helmets as they work.

Tuesday, April 17

I need an editor...

Just noticed that I spelled urges a new way in my post yesterday: "erges". How embarrassing...that isn't even a word that you can spell wrong and not notice it! I always read through what I write, but this time I didn't catch anything. I have never been the greatest speller, and to make it worse, I am not very good at proofreading.

I don't know about you, but when I realize that I made a mistake (whatever it may be) I am very hard on myself. I have always been a bit of a perfectionist, and I think to a point that is a good thing. Being a perfectionist makes you work very hard and push yourself to do your best. It is not a good thing when you can't allow yourself to make mistakes or it paralyzes you and prevents you from moving forward for fear of making mistakes. I think this is why I am having such a rough time with my paintings for the show--I am putting so much pressure on myself that I am not allowing myself the freedom to make some mistakes along the way.

That said, hopefully there aren't any spelling errors in this...if there are please don't mention it. (I will be way to hard on myself!)

Monday, April 16

4 weeks left...


I can't quite wrap my brain around the fact that we have only 4 weeks left until our baby will be here! (4 weeks until our due date, which is May 14th. The baby could be sooner or later, I don't think they care much about due dates!) Last night I put together our little baby swing. I have been doing lots of laundry, and thinking about packing the hospital bag.

It is hard to explain the weird feeling that you have to get everything in order and ready now. (Cleaning, planning, buying all the baby stuff, etc.) It is not like all the stores will close after the baby is born, but you kinda feel that way! I feel like I need to get everything all ready to go right now.

Needless to say, the painting has taken a back burner to all these planning and cleaning erges! I had high hopes to have lots of paintings finished at this point so I could relax a little bit about my show in October. No such luck!

Thursday, April 12

date night

Last night Andrew and I went to our second childbirth class. I think we have decided to make these little class nights like a date night because we (Andrew espcecially) have been super busy lately and haven't had time to do a date night on a weekend.

There are advantages to making Wednesdays a night to go out to eat, the number one reason being that the crowds are not an issue. Last Wednesday we went to Puerto Vallarta so we didn't want to go there again. (Even though it is a very "happy place"!) So, we though long and hard and decided on Greeks Pizzeria in the BSU village. Yummy. It was nice because we pretty much had the place to ourselves. (Plus I have always loved the quaint little red and white checkered tablecloths!)

Andrew and I recommend the Gourmet House pizza...it is the best! It has these little meatballs on it that are super good. It usually comes with feta cheese (our favorite part) but we had to skip that because that kind of cheese is not good for the baby. (One of the many sacrafices we will undoubtedly make for our child!)

Tuesday, April 10

the amazon diversion

I love to read...and I always have enjoyed all things books. When I was younger I used to read several books at the same time. I struggle with that now, but I still love to have a book going all the time. When I was in college I worked at a bookstore part time. Lots of times I felt like a big portion of my paycheck went back to them because I was buying books all the time!

My new favorite thing book related is the personalized wishlist you can create on Amazon.com. Very fun! After you make your list they even suggest things for you! So, before you know it your wish list is miles long and is filled with books that you didn't even know existed! I can spend lots of time playing with my wish list...too much time probably. I have all kinds of books on there: art books, children's books, inspirational books, and fiction books.

The sad part about all this is that I probably spend more time reading about books than I do reading the actual books themselves!

Monday, April 9

something different




Last week I allowed myself some time to do a little experimenting. I was glad that I did because I came up with this little collage series. I started painting and drawing directly onto old book pages, then I attached the pages to a piece of watercolor paper with some matte medium. I was getting into a rut with my paintings, and feeling like I wasn't gettting anywhere, so this little diversion was fun. I am thinking about trying some similar ideas with some bigger paintings this week. I will be sure to post the results!

Thursday, April 5

find your happy place

Last night Andrew and I attended our first childbirth class at the hospital. It started at 6, which meant that Andrew and I met there after I got through with art lessons and he was finished with work. Needless to say we were hungry from the start, and so we made a plan to go to Puerto Vallarta (yummy Mexican food!) afterwards for dinner.

The class was informative, but at some points very funny also. One of the future dads put on the "empathy belly"--very entertaining. The last part of the class we laid on the floor and listened to soothing music while the teacher instructed us to find our "happy place". (This was very nice and relaxing. I am not sure how it will work when I am in labor, however.) I struggled to think of my happy place. I finally began to picture our hammock in our yard at home. I pictured the dogs laying underneath, a cool breeze, and the sounds of a lawnmower humming in the background. (I find the sound of a lawnmower to be relaxing--kind of weird, I know.)

After class was over, I asked Andrew about his happy place. Without hesitation he said: Puerto Vallarta. Weird. Even more weird than the sounds of a lawnmower. How could a local Mexican restaurant be his happy place? I know we were hungry, but come on. I questioned him on this. He went on to say that his cell phone didn't work there, so that's why he chose this location. Weird again. I know that his cell phone does work there--it works everywhere in Muncie. With a confused look on my face I mentioned this fact. Then he finally explained that his happy place was not the restaurant, but the REAL Puerto Vallarta...in Mexico...where we spent our honeymoon. Sparkling pools, sounds of the beach, beautiful weather, no cell phones. Duh.

Come to think of it that is a very nice happy place after all.

Tuesday, April 3

"the beautiful is everywhere..."


I found this quote a while ago:

"The Beautiful is everywhere; perhaps more in the arrangement of your saucepans on the white walls of your kitchen than in your eighteenth-century living room or in the official museums."
-Fernand Leger (painter)

What a wonderful thought--that "the beautiful" is around you everywhere. I try to find beautiful things everyday--it could be an apple, the way the light hits something, or even the way something is arranged. It is easy to be distracted and miss these things--sometimes you have to look at something with "new" eyes. It's like when you travel, you see things as beautiful because you've never seen them before. What if we approached our own everyday surroundings like that?

I think it would be neat to go on a photo "safari" to hunt down beautiful things around you that you may miss. I may do that soon...

Monday, April 2

doodle bird


Here's a fun little "doodle bird" that I finished this morning. Nothing too fancy, just some colored pencils in my sketchbook. Sadly I don't have much to report on the big paintings for my show--hopefully I can make some progress this week. I have found that it is much easier to work on little paintings and artworks. I find that I put a lot of energy into a large piece and am never quite happy with it. That is very sad because big paper is expensive! So far the only paintings that have "made the cut" for the show are little and they are birds. Go figure--I can't seem to stop with the birds...