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The aroma from my kitchen...

Monday, October 26, 2020

...is a blend of vegetable stew in the slow cooker and bread in the bread machine. Dinner for later. The Tabby sisters, our kitties, are dozing in their accustomed spots. The rocker by the sliding glass door, and the love seat, covered with a very soft grey blanket. The rambunctious younger sister, Ava, sleeps curled up like a proper lady. The slightly older, shy and pensive one, Olive, sleeps sprawled on her back, paws reaching skyward. Go figure. I sit in our living room, because I have a week off.

I have the challenge of paring down the accumulation of stuff in our garage and streamlining the basement. Not very exciting, but I am happy to have the time to get a start on this. The kitties are hovering near the the doors to the garage and basement, like they’re itching to explore them. Our previous cat, Mia, went down into the basement when we first got her, and when we realized, we went down and couldn’t find her. She had gotten up into the unfinished ceiling and was traveling across the beams, completely blissed out. The ceiling tiles are now partially hung, and we’ve got to finish hanging them.

So, life seems to be centered almost entirely with my husband and me being in our home. We took a drive to a local beach yesterday. I’m trying to get out every day to walk. For exercise, I’ve been doing Nicole Nichols’ 7 Day Bootcamp, here on SparkPeople. Stretching mostly, some strength training. And riding the bike in our basement. I started this drawing of a hummingbird recently.

Done from a photo I found online. I think I will do partly in colored pencils or watercolor, since the colors were luminous purples and pinks. I was thinking about how I went off to study art in college and ended up finishing my degree in Advertising Design. Seemed like a good idea at the time. But I never liked the world of advertising. I’m grateful I had the opportunity to go, though.

Talking to my husband, Jeff, about creativity. He works in technical support, and is a guitarist and photographer on the side. He asked me if I traced the picture of the bird, and I didn’t. He was commenting on the accuracy, I guess. Part of the joy of drawing, I told him, is perceiving spatial relationships, interacting with and sensing the object’s dimensions. He understood this from a musician’s point of view.

I told him, “I thought you were going to ask me if I drew it out of my head or copied it from a picture.” He smiled and said no. This is a criteria I’ve heard some people place on viewing and evaluating artwork. It frustrates me. I told my husband that I wouldn’t want to draw any of the things crawling around in my head.

I had a contract at one point to illustrate a children’s picture book, in my early twenties, while still in college. It was through a publishing company that a friend worked for. I got in to show my portfolio and got a job illustrating a book on explaining divorce to children. I didn’t really like the text, but set to work, photographing a young niece and nephew to pose in scenes to match the storyboard. But this was in the late seventies, pre-computer, and I had to create the artwork for production myself, using illustration board with an acetate overlay. The overlay had part of the painting directly on it.. The 2-color book was therefore pre-separated for printing production. I couldn’t recreate the quality of the watercolors and pen and ink drawings of children and animals that I presented in my portfolio. The technical aspects of it baffled me. The artwork I produced wasn’t print quality. The publisher offered me a chance to redo the art, but I was heading into my final semester of college. I had dropped out and returned a couple of times because of personal issues, and wanted to finish. I didn’t think I could do both. So I let it go. It made me very sad. But I did graduate.

Don’t know why that came up. But I am logging in my food and trying to fit in more exercise. And I have this whole week to work on various projects. Life is good.
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