How Is It April Already?

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I forgot that this was April.  I forgot it was National Poetry month.

Honestly, I just flipped the calendar over to the new month yesterday and didn’t notice a thing.

However, I still get emails.  Today, on the 5th, is the first day I received anything that said anything about Poetry month.

On top of that, I know that the 100 Day Project began two days ago.  I have had plans for this year’s 100 days project for a while.  And it fits in beautifully with Tara Leaver’s free 7-day challenge that started today.

Last week, due to the 100 Day Project, I was cognizant enough to pick up paint specifically for my project.  I bought three colors of postcard-sized cardstock, I think back in December (brown, white, black).  I’m not worried about starting late, because with our days, I never thought I would make one thing a day for one hundred days—but I did want to make 100 things within the time allotted.  So I had planned to set up space one day during the week and paint out as many cards as I felt up to…and then work on the individual cards throughout the coming week as I felt able.

Plus, I got an extra push this morning when I received an email from the Kindness Rocks Project suggesting that we leave Random Art of Kindness cards as an art abandonment project.  My original idea was to make up 100 art cards, write or doodle or something (that part hasn’t gelled up quite yet) and then … leave them for people to find…

So—what am I babbling on about here?

The fact that I have four days of poetry to catch up on…and it’s time for me to start my 100 pieces project…as well as making sure I take more than enough time to rest rest rest, recuperate and heal.  Luckily, I can smoosh and splash paint while sitting on the couch…because I am so worn out at the moment…if I had only a few spoons a day before surgery, right now I have one spoon per day…and an energetic five-year-old on top of that…

I will be posting my work as I go along…

Thanks for listening.

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Lifebook 2018 : Week 2: Bear Of Compassion #2

My second bear from Tam’s lesson.

I love that I was able to doodle…even if I didn’t paint everything out the way I wanted to (I am talking to you wing on top the middle wing on the left side there….)   She’s cute.  She’s sweet.  She’s the background on my phone now…

I’m happy.

Week One Lifebook 2018…Continued…

 

I’ve talked about this one before, when she was just a sketch…

There ‘should’ be all sorts of doodles all over the place…and before I started to add paint and color, there were…it was quite chaotic.  By the time I started to work on finishing the background, I decided I would feel better if it were all just painted over and left to lie beneath the paint.

My symbols here:

The Rabbit, which has been forcing its way into my life for about two years now…technically the love affair with bunnies started even longer ago…with Br’er Rabbit when I was a little kid…and moved into a pet bunny when I was a slightly older kid…and then a few years ago my angoras that I developed the allergy to their hay so I had to let them go (I placed them with a rabbit shelter–I didn’t just turn the poor boys out or anything).

The Peacock (that shape at the throat), this is another that has been here a long time and always seems to push itself forward in more recent years.

The Raven (that feather in the hair), half of my Totem animal team…where would I be without the Raven?

Mushrooms…do you see the name of my blog here?  Alice in all things, even if it is my Alyce…but mushrooms are a big thing for me in and of themselves and really, other than Alice’s tale, because they aren’t really plants–they aren’t really animals–they are something else entirely (fungus)…the whole concept of mushroom…it grows on and consumes the dead–a necessary thing to keep the world revolving…they cross-over, between the worlds, they bridge the gaps between things…and that is why they call to me.

Her word is ‘homecoming’…which fits in with my own word of the year, ‘settle in’.  With a bit of flowery flourish at the end.

This is the first one I drew, following Tam’s style and lead.  The original plan was to draw things in Tam’s style and then do it again in my own style–but things have been so convoluted…it isn’t working out that way.  All I can say though is…it is helping.  The exercises, not the art, are really helping.  The art solidifies the healing aspects (although, to be clear, you don’t have to do any of the healing bits if you are a part of any of Tam’s classes–it can be all about the art for you.)

 

Week 1 Lifebook 2018

 

So, I have already talked about this piece before.

I am a bit entertained that to me the inside of that circle sort of looks like the British flag, and it was supposed to be flower petals that didn’t really pan out as nice fat petals…and I had to stop messing with it before I totally screwed it up…

This was the making marks warm-up lesson of week 1.  Nothing fancy or elaborate.  I could have skipped it, but it felt disingenuine to do so.  If I watched all the color theory videos and everything else again, there was no reason to skip the warm-up exercise.

 

A New Year In Life Book 2018

WIP finally able to start playing w week 1 lessons from lifebook 2018

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I feel so far behind in Life Book…

Lessons are released on Mondays…I manage to download the lessons Monday…if I am lucky by Wednesday I have started to watch the lessons.  Usually, it’s Thursday.

I told you, we have a lot going on this year.  Mondays used to be my day to recuperate from the weekends when everyone is here.  Now, there is no rest until about Wednesday…and it’s not that restful because there is so much going on all over.  No rest for the wicked, I know.  I feel as if I have no breathing room at the moment.

Add into that LifeBook…and although I can get pretty cranky about some things…this is my breathing room.  Not the art per se…although I love that part…it’s the actual healing aspect of it…which is why I decided to come back to Life Book this year.

The picture above is the first art piece of LifeBook this year, just a mark making exercise.  I don’t think I could have been any more cranky making something if someone had pissed gasoline on me and set me on fire.  Seriously.

That’s not how I work.  That’s not how I want to work.  The chaos and the noise of it made my head hurt.  Grr.  Ya know, I fought my way through it…and I mean it…I fought my way through that…because I knew meeting the resistance where it was was going to help me on down the line.

Guess what, it didn’t really help.

However, I did learn I don’t have to do that stuff at all –and that is what helped me.

WIP. ..finally able to start the actual first lesson on lifebook 2018

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This is my initial sketch for the main lesson of Week 1…my original intention was to do things the instructor’s way…in this lesson, Tam…and then interpret the lesson in my own way, using my own style…

except that it took me two weeks to complete this piece (pictures forthcoming after I bring out my baseball bat to threaten the printer/scanner a bit).

One the one hand, I let things dry completely before moving ahead.  I thought about colors.  I thought about intentions.  I put in everything Tam asked us to put in…all the doodles and everything top to bottom.  When you see the finished piece, remember that…by the time I finished her, all that stuff was gone because it made my head hurt.

HOWEVER, in all of that, I found a new space, a new equanimity, a new ground upon which to stand.  Tam said one thing during her video, something about liking to put wings inside clothes, in strange places, that she liked to add the element of the surreal because it spoke to the artistic part of her brain…and that comment, that concept, it reverberated through my brain for two days before my heart digested it and gave it back to me in methods that I could fathom and envelope…and a whole new level of experience has been reached.

I said (mostly to myself, I guess) that Life Book 2018 for me was not going to be about the art.  I do not want to make art that looks exactly like Tam’s.  I want to learn new things, yes, but I want to expand and explore my own style more.  Life Book for me this year is all about the healing process.

Lifebook week 3…just a sketch, but getting there…

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This is my initial sketch of Tam’s lesson for Week 2.  I don’t know why I didn’t post any pictures of my pieces inspired by Andrea Gomoll’s lesson.  I will post the completed pieces…when they are done and after tussling with the printer/scanner…

This is my Bear Of Compassion…I have another sketch already started too…since this one is bigger than I want (I couldn’t put the wings on it) and it’s tilted sideways like he’s standing on a hill or something…but this lesson really hit me hard…especially where I was at the time.

So, the whole I’m learning art thing…no…this is all about healing, about self-compassion, and about creating some space for me to breathe into, just for myself.

Thank you for that, Tamara Laporte…and all the teachers of Life Book this year.