More Journaling

I've journaled since I was 15. But for some years, blogging and social media edged out private journaling. That is not a good thing. Private journaling allows you to work out your thoughts in a way that social media doesn't. Social media is reactive. Facebook and blogging is edited to present what you think is acceptable for others to read. Journaling is a good place to write about hopes for the future, present challenges. You can see growth over time. How you came through the last hard time. How you celebrated your successes. 

Do you journal? I use this journal , which is small enough to fit in a pocketbook if you're traveling.  I like the color of the ivory pages. It folds back on itself well.

You Have to Believe

While I am getting reset in my sewing room, 
I am resharing old posts which resonate with where I'm at now. 

When you're in process with a work, sometimes they get to a stage where they're downright ugly and it's hard to believe they will ever be what you envision.


It's hard to believe that THIS above 
can become the doll on the left below.
But it can.

Being an artist is not a straight progression from point A to point B.  Being an artist is about problem solving. The glue stockinette layer will dry for 24 hours.  I'll pick off any glue blemishes.  Then I will be filling in the crevices where the stockinette meets.  Gesso will be applied to the head twice, maybe three times.  Then I'll paint her.  These dolls are very labor intensive, as many of you who have taken the Izannah Walker Workshop have found out.  

You have to be in a very patient mood to apply stockinette.  Calm music doesn't hurt, either.  ;-)

Adventures of Old People and Why I Talk to Strangers

Repost from 2011.

Sometimes I talk to strangers. I teach my children not to do that, though. Unless they decide to do what I do and not what I say. Then I'm sunk. 

I was at Pizza Gourmet to pick up food.  It had been a hard day and I deserved not to have to cook.   If I felt like writing about it, there would be an "autism awareness" story inserted here. 

Anyway, there was a big white sparkly truck parked next to my dirty mini-van. This was the kind of truck that could fit the Beatles and their grandchildren in it. I waited  to get into my car while the front passenger side door opened about an inch per second. A lady of advanced years slid  slowly down from the seat to the ground, skipping the help of the running board attached to this truck of wonder. Think of watching a child go down a slide in very slow motion but sporting gray hair and holding the sides for dear life.

She smiled at me and I commented, "Those trucks are pretty high.  My husband has one and they're hard to get in and out of when you're short.  It's nice that you have a running board, my husband's truck doesn't have one."

"Short" was my substition for "old."  No need to offend the stranger I'm talking to. It was hard to tell how old she was. She might have been 80 or she might have been 100. But by golly she was sliding out of the side of a souped up pick-up truck with a smile so she had my respect. Because I hold onto the little handles when I do that. And I am sure I look like I am contemplating the beginning of the universe as I disembark. 

I thought talking with strangers was done, but no. The back seat  passenger door of the truck opened at medium speed and another lady of indeterminate age got out. She didn't slide but she didn't jump.   She might have been 60 or she might have been 75. I'm unsure. She had gray hair and wasn't what I would call young. 

She commented to the older woman, "Mom, you didn't use the running board when you got out. Next time use the running board."

Then the daughter turned to me, rolled her eyes and said in a theatrical whisper, "Old people!  They never listen!"

Isn't life interesting?

Granny in Her Sunbonnet

Some years back, when I was visiting an older uncle in Florida, he let me take photos he had for scanning. I'm so glad I did that, because he passed away a couple years later. I've shared all those pictures with that side of the family.

This picture is one of my favorites, because it shows my Granny wearing a sunbonnet on the far left.  Next to her, in the middle at the back, is my uncle. My uncle was probably a teenager then because he joined the service when he was old enough. He was born in 1935, so I'm guessing this was sometime in the late 1940's.

But it was Granny's sunbonnet that catches my interest. It was really late to be wearing an old fashioned bonnet like that in the 1940's. But they were practical for keeping the sun off your neck and face. This article says they were worn in the country long after they were considered unfashionable by city folk. There are some patterns there if you are interested.

30 Days of OUT!

For 30 days I will take a bag of stuff out of my house without guilt. My attitude will be, hey, I tried this, it didn't work out and now it's moving on in its journey to hopefully bless someone else.  I meant to repost this image below yesterday. It expresses what I felt when looking at what needs to go back into my sewing room. OUT!

Day 31: Starting Over

I'm rethinking everything. I've been selling paintings and folk art for twelve years now. When I dusted off this blog, I read some of my early blog posts. They had a sense of excitement to them. What's different between then and now?
  1. I had more time. I was working a night job, and making art during the day while my kids were in school. All that has changed. My kids are graduated. My oldest still needs support 24-7. We've finally been able to get into a kind of rhythm with some wonderful caregivers for him for a few hours a week.
  2. I had more energy 12 years ago! 
  3. Twelve years ago, I didn't box myself in. I was working on different types of things each week.
  4. My oldest son had people working with him who knew him very well and were experienced and capable.
  5. I was part of a creative group. 
  6. I had one creative blog, not three.
  7. I had no interest in politics other than voting for a decent candidate. 
  8. There was no Facebook or Twitter!
  9. I didn't have so much stuff in my workroom. 
  10. I was more hopeful.
  11. I made more assemblages.
  12. I made more paintings.
  13. I sketched more. 
  14. I journaled more.
  15. I sold a lot of dolls for $14.99 on EBay in my learning curve. ;-)
  16. I wasn't creating TO sell as a starting point. I was selling what I enjoyed creating
I'm not sure what all that means but some of these hold the secret to restarting. 

The window has been replaced in my basement sewing room. Next week I can start loading things back in. I'm only bringing back in what brings joy. Or I can use. Instead of my wobbly ironing board, I'm going to set up an ironing station like one of these I saw on Pinterest.  

Day 30: Revisiting Thumbnail Sketches

Some time ago I did a series in 31 Days of Art. One of the posts was on the importance of doing thumbnail sketches. You can read that post here. 

For November I am going to do 30 days of thumbnail sketches. After all, from little acorns mighty oaks grow. Here's a form in case you'd like to follow along. 

"Do not let what you cannot do
keep you from doing what you can do."

John Wooden


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