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March 2007 Archives

March 3, 2007



The above are cards created for the 2nd Creative Mom Podcast ATC Exchange (February 2007), which had a theme of "Alphabet Soup." The March exchange is underway. If you're interested in signing up for April, please join us!

March 4, 2007

Want to Play?


This little "Spinner" from the LEGO Pirate's Treasure caught my eye one morning last week because, of course, it hadn't gotten put away. At any rate, it led me to think about games in our lives... and games when I was a kid. (A colorized version appears at Flickr.)

March 6, 2007

EDM #2 - Fractured Light


I talked about this sketch/painting in this week's episode of the Creative Mom Podcast (Ep 39). I also just realized that challenge #2 for the Everyday Matters Group is to draw a light/lamp. Since I've been planning forever to start working through those challenges, I'm posting this one here. I realized in looking over the list that I've drawn a few of the weekly challenge topics in recent months, in fact.

Danny G in Action

Wow... Wow... Wow... don't miss the video Danny Gregory's posted to his site where he lets you watch (time compressed, of course) as he sketches and then paints a portrait with Sumi ink in his watercolor Moleskine. Amazing. He's also working upside down, which immediately jumped out at me because I've been fighting with a drawing of a few little robot creatures, two of which would be upside down in the picture and keep giving me fits. I was thinking a few mornings ago during my sketch time that the reason I keep striking out with what I'm trying to capture with these little guys (which is all related to my word of the year) is because of the upside-down issue. Then, I tune in to Danny today and see him working - masterfully - upside down. Go figure!

March 24, 2007



This is the ATC I made (painted) and sent off to my recipient for the Creative Mom Podcast ATC Exchange for March. The theme this month was "A Space of One's Own." Listeners of the show know, immediately, that the chair pictured here is "my" chair - where I sit with my cup of coffee (on the little black table you see next to it) and sketch in the mornings after I shower and make two lunches but before I get the boys up and make breakfast and get them dressed for school.

I love the chair. It's one of a matched set that we stumbled over I guess two years ago. We had gone to Cheesecake Factory (on top of Macy's) for my partner's birthday and had to wait, so we'd wandered with our pager down to the furniture floor. When we saw these, it was instant love. The colors are perfect for us, even though we didn't have anything gold at the time. And I love the print.

It's appeared in a number of sketches (I noticed recently) in my journals over the last year. This is the first time, I think, I've painted it (or given it color) with the exception of the (poor) portrait I did for my mom two years ago of the boys sitting in this chair.

In case there's any doubt... I do NOT have green walls or a green floor. And I do NOT have a yellow clock. In fact, we don't have a wall clock anywhere in the house. The wall behind the chair has an arrangement of black multi-photo frames centered over the table, and right above the chair is a piece of art the oldest did last year that we had framed at his school framing fundraiser. And I do NOT have a circular braided (or otherwise) rug like this under the chair - although I do think such a rug would be very nice and pretty! But, circular rugs don't work for me. I need angles... rectangles.

At any rate, I ended up really attached to the card (after it giving me fits trying to get the "whole" chair in the small space) and did hate to send it away. But, I did put it in the mail today.

I was taking a photo of it yesterday (since my scan did nasty things to the greens and yellows [and my camera is not liking reds]), and the oldest asked what I was doing.

I explained.

"But, you're only sending a picture of the picture, right? Not the real thing?"

I laughed. "No, I have to send the card. That's why I'm taking a picture."

And he let out quite the "awwwwww." He didn't want me to send it away either, which I found really cute - and interesting at the same time!

All About a Little Plastic Chair?


This is a quick (though not great) impression of one of the two little plastic chairs that came with a plastic LEGO table Gramma gave the oldest a few years back. The chairs have become staples in our living room where, admittedly, we do most things, including eat. (Sorry, we really are down-to-earth people and NOT at all a Norman Rockwell painting. Hope I'm not bursting any bubbles. You have to envision that our dining room table is currently covered with several thousand LEGO pieces currently in use - or creations in states of recent breakdown that might be able to easily be put back together instead of being stored back away in bins, one of the three sewing machines, a stack of fabrics paired with zippers for pen pouches, a huge Lazy Susan basket my mother wove for me for Christmas, and other piles of things...)

The problem (with the little plastic chairs) is that while the legs on the chairs are interchangeable, there's nothing we can do about the fact that one chair has a blue back and one has a red back. But, the BLUE back is the one they (suddenly) both want. It's a constant source of contention and whining and tears.

We try and have them alternate. But there's still constant "trouble" over the chairs. I even had to laugh at the oddity of me threatening last week to make them both sit in the floor if it didn't stop. Once the words came out, I knew how silly the whole thing sounded.

Today, after finally getting them settled back down after more seating battles, I realized that I need to bring up the two wooden unfinished chairs I have in the basement, prime them, and tackle painting them. I love doing decorative furniture painting, and it should be fun. I guess I have to put their names on the chairs - otherwise, one is sure to end up a favorite and we'll be right back where we started, right? (Because while it might seem to make sense to paint them identical, that would sort of go against the grain of doing a really cool decorative and colorful paint job on each. But, I'll at least use the same palette of colors and similar patterning. But, I'm thinking names are mandatory.)

March 28, 2007

White, white, white

I've taken more than my share of photos this week with the camera facing me trying to get the gist of this white striping at my part. But, I glanced up in the rear view mirror today, and the stripe jumped at me - so I took a different approach - turning the camera on the mirror instead. I could cope with the white stripe. I actually find it funny. But I've been stunned at the number of people in the last two weeks, as it's gotten more pronounced, who have been in the middle of a conversation with me and then their eyes wander up to the "white" and then back down to my face. Do they think I don't SEE THAT?!?! Amazing. It is strangely bright and white, I guess. I catch site of it almost every time I pass a mirror - like it's a reflector pad or something - and yet I had trouble getting it to "show" clearly in the zillion photos I tried to snap to capture it before I, um, deal with it (eventually). I'm really not that old. But, my whole family went white young, and I seem to be increasingly so.

March 29, 2007

Cool "Altered" Countdown

I'm spreading the word about Lisa Vollrath's April countdown (which I heard about from Heidi's site). If you're an altered media artist, check it out.


In the spirit of pushing you in the direction of good and creative and instructional things, let me mention how much I've been enjoying popping in at the Confessions of a Pioneer Woman blog. I believe Poppins is the one that first pointed me here because she knew I'd love the photography (even though she warned me visiting this site would in no way help my extreme longing for/obsession with the idea of branching out into the world of the digital SLR). And she was right (on both counts). I love, too, that Ree often steps back and shows you how she looked at a photo she's taken and then approached post-production tweaking or enhancing in Photoshop. Watching the transformation of photos, bit by bit, is really fascinating. That the first day I hit her blog she was waxing poetic about a coffeemaker also seemed fitting.

Danny Watercolors

Okay... another Danny Gregory video that's not to miss. I don't know, honestly, why you're even stopping in here at my site when you could be at his. So, get thee there. This one is a time-sped landscape watercolor from ink to paint. Great!

Paired Portraits

In Episode 40 (maybe) of the Creative Mom Podcast, I mentioned, among other fragments and ramblings and disconnected ideas, that I'd had this idea for some kind of portrait exchange where a bunch of us would swap photos and draw portraits of each other and thus create this self-drawn Flickr gallery of the Creative Mom Podcast circle of listeners. NO ONE commented on that idea at all - even listeners that tend to pick up on little things like that didn't mention it. It's okay. I assumed that either a) you thought it was a crazy idea or b) you thought it would be cool but don't have an interest in drawing someone's face. But, the idea did NOT leave me. I've thought about it a few times. There are other things I think would be cool, like an ATC swap for the kids. But, I'm not up for "running" that, most likely. The portrait swap, would just be cool. And then, just now...

as I browsed around on Danny's site (I'm sounding a bit like a stalker, huh. I should turn off my monitor and go draw something or paint something. The Chinese and Japanese eggplant I was mysteriously compelled to buy last week in the grocery is softening in the fridge, I noticed today. The colors speak to me. I have told myself repeatedly they bear painting. And then there is this cool coffee cup, handmade by a friend in college, that has been on my mind lately, and I finally climbed up on a stool and found it buried behind the dozens of other coffee mugs that get used more routinely, and I know I have to draw it.)...

as I browsed around on Danny's site, I saw a link to this: The Portrait Party - which is exactly that kind of pair up and draw someone else kind of project. One of those moments where timing feels too, too, too, eerie ... as it did when an hour after I finished plotting out my notes for Episode 43 of the Creative Mom Podcast, which I'm hoping to record before we leave for a road trip to the mountains and the melting snow, and those notes include a lot of discussion of restaurant art with kids ... restaurant art appears, out of the blue, front and center on the CMP Circle Yahoo! group email list. Again, the timing almost knocked me over. It was just really strange.

So. Go check out the portrait party.

And, if you're a CMP listener, consider doing a portrait sometime. You don't have to swap with me. Pick a person from the CMP Circle Flickr group (or the email list) and do a swap of photos. I'll set up the album...

Meanwhile, I'm going to go check on the eggplant.

(Oh, and by the way, there are some "issues" with where I have this site sitting. Ultimately, I need to port the whole thing over to the Creative Mom Podcast server, which will mean a bit of headache for the older posts/images. But, it has to be done. Hopefully, the site will still be running when we return from the mountains, and I'll tackle it then!)


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