If you find yourself worrying about accidentally copying someone when you’re making and that’s inhibiting you sharing, don’t worry. (That’s different than blatantly stealing). Maybe it’s because you have a sibling out there that you don’t know about and they see your stuff and start to get mad becuse it’s just like theirs. So then they think well, maybe there is a perfectly good explanation for this and then they go and do a little research and discover that you’re their sibling, a twin, or a multiple. Then you can all turn around and get mad together at whoever did this to you. And mad at those disgusting twin studies by Neubauer and the people who didn’t inform adoptive families that their child was a multiple and maybe mad enough to get those folks at Yale to give you access to the documents that pertain to you. Because right now they can’t unless your request is approved under the terms laid out by the Child Development Center of the Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services. It’s troubling that people might be denied access to information that could improve the lives of living people or help them explain strange events or behaviors of their relatives. These studies had an effect on more than just the participants but their friends and extended families as well.
Last week I started walking/jogging again after putting it down for awhile. I had set a fitness goal for myself last year which I reached twice but I had wanted to be able to do it with ease. Yesterday was my fourth or fifth day back in two weeks. I struggled with my weight during my pregnancy with my son and afterwards. I was obese. Just as I would start to get myself back together again something would knock me down. Sometimes my own fault, sometimes not. I had really bad knee problems in my teens and twenties and gave up on my dream of competing in a triathlon. So, you won’t see me trying to compete in any Ironman. But, I set a goal to jog without stopping an extremely modest distance and it was really difficult for me. So, I have to trick myself to get myself running sometimes. I’ll say, “ok today I’ll walk the shades and run the sunny parts.” You know you set little goals like that along the way.
Now, not sure if you’ve experienced this but people at the track are competitive. Some people working out just walk fast or run fast past you because there is a pocket of space that just feels more comfortable to be in. I was never in track and field so this was all new to me back when I started.
But some people actually gun for you. Which is understandable it’s human but it’s still kind of weird. It’s like when you drive and someone speeds up or slows down just to mess with you. I admit that on off days I speed up or slow down to get past people but it’s usually not because I’m trying to compete with them. But sometimes you feel things from people like vibes or something and it gets your goat. You try not to let it but it still does. Or the color of someone's hair bow reminds you of breast cancer or someone who dumped you which makes you angry so you run a little harder. Which is why I try not to wear anything with words on it when I’m working out. It just seems kind of unfair to insert yourself into someone’s mind like that when they are just trying to do something healthy. I listen to music when I’m out there and when I can still hear distinct words of people’s conversations that’s pretty loud. So I’ll adjust my pace to get by those folks.
Yesterday I parked in a different spot than I normally do so at the end of my jog/walk I’d have an extra uphill to conquer to help build my strength up. And in about the middle of my walk just as I was about to start to run a length instead of a short a woman in blue pants pushed (by pushed I mean accelerated) ahead of me which caused a mental battle with myself about how now she’s going to think I’m trying to race her etc. She’s talking on her phone and I could be very wrong but it sounded like she kind of hissed something like “now you did it, so and so warned you.” That sounds crazy right? She probably didn’t say that. But at any rate the fact that I could hear her was enough for me to shrug off the worry that I was going to bum her flow in some way and I started my run but I went too fast and couldn’t complete the distance I wanted to at a jog. But, I made it to the last hill and decided to jog up it. I had to walk a little and when I glanced back to see if there were any cars coming I saw a guy wearing blue starting up the hill and I knew by his pace that he was going to beat me and I really really didn’t want him to. I guess that’s competitive. He passed me just at the top of the hill and gave me a thumbs up. It felt sort of like someone giving me the peace sign.
So today, I’m bringing my son to Boy Scouts. I get to where I think we’re supposed to be only to be told the meeting has been moved. What? I didn’t get the notice? And it turns out it’s at the track at the high school and he’s supposed to run a mile without any notice given at all with an injured heel. This is at the track where he hates to go now because of a bad first experience/ introduction to track and field. So we turn around and we leave. He had a ton of homework and a test the following day. And as we’re walking up the hill this young man in a blue shirt jogs past us. I couldn’t help thinking it was some weird pay back. For what? Loosing?
Here’s what I was working on yesterday morning. Just playing around trying to come up with something more original that I can make multiples of. Was thinking about doing a video but it would be about an hour of scritchy scratching at the edges.
I know the name of my shop is Mariposa Paper Arts so you would think I’d do more butterflies but so many other people are doing them really well. If you like the shape of the tag it’s the Sizzix - Super Scallop Crescent Die. I use Sizzix more than some of the other paper cutting tools because their machines and dies stand up better to my coarser paper.
The last few weeks have been about completing something I started a long time ago and trying not to use the word “I” so much. But, it’s a journal. So, I have a few more elements to go and I will have just about worked through my obsession with this artist. There was a lot to learn in this process not so much technique wise but about the artist. Some of it was unpleasant but then cathartic and delightful too. I'm sure much of it has been hashed out already in papers and books etc. so I won't discuss it here until I've been to the library. Maybe when I'm truly finished. Still need a jug, a primate, and some jungle. At least. Guess I'm not so done. There’s more on this artist further back in my blog if you’re interested, Henri Rousseau Bag Tutorial.
Some of the best advice I've ever received from another artist was that when you explore a subject you should really explore it, like do it every way you can imagine. And I've received similar advice from my favorite poetry teacher. However, that is very difficult in practice. It takes a long time and might appear kind of scattered until you pull it all together which I'm learning might take a lifetime. As an artist that's a pretty scary truth to confront.
Not just referring to Henri Rousseau here but in the future if I'm going to be inspired by other artists I hope they're ones who weren't quite so tortured and driven by madness.
Would love to hear your suggestions and to hear about who inspires you.
These little torn paper flowers were inspired by Rousseau’s painting The Dream. I’d started this project awhile back after a printing fail of this image for another project but got frustrated and scrapped the whole thing.
The recent batch of paper I made recalled the tones of that misprint so I decided to start again. This funny exotic looking flower is worth doing a hundred times even if it’s been done before. Just call them “studies” I tell myself. The first one started spontaneously with a tiny little bit of petal shaped paper. I know, I know, it’s just another flower but I like them. That sort of repetition that occurs within a craft kind of drives me crazy so I might seem a little bit obsessive about communicating my sources, inspiration and how things come about. I honestly have not received one piece of feedback from this journal so I don’t think anyone is reading this anyway but it helps me keep track of things.
Printing mechanics are not my strength and it took me a few tries to get everything correct when I was working on Completion Certificates for my son’s class MTM Rousseau Art segment. These are all led by volunteers. The original certificates were from the home school version of the Meet the Master’s Art Program that I found and purchased online when I was doing this. It was awhile back so I don’t remember exactly how much I enhanced the open source images I found but I did a little work on them and and added them to the certificates to help inspire the kids to remember and connect the image to the artist.
Anyway, just a note on how old (over four years ago) mistakes sometimes generate new work. That’s why I kept those old trial layouts and misprints . I thought I might use them for some paper mash project. Paper Mache / Assemblage if we’re being proper.
Henri Rousseau was apparently self taught and retired at 49 to become a full time artists. And while it is often said that he was another one of those artists who was laughed at during his lifetime, he was friends with his contemporaries, he exhibited a decent amount of work and received commissions. Don’t mean to simplify a life that seems to have been riddled with misfortune but go look at what he made, vibrant, mysterious, playful, large-scale work.
I have never sailed a sail boat, surfed on a surf board, been to Spain or Portugal, made a wedding cake, gotten an A in math, and lots of other things. I wonder why when I send a picture to myself from my phone so I can easily get it to my PC the first attempt doesn’t arrive until after I make a second attempt. I have always (well for a long time anyway) secretly wanted to be in a band. This is a “mash up” (Does anyone know who first used this term?) of a cleaned up version of some lyrics I wrote. The rough draft is in my planner. I sent myself a picture of that (only once) because I wanted to mash it in too but it didn’t arrive in time. It will probably show up when I post this. C’est La Vie.
Here is the planner picture partly obscured. It showed up a bit later.