Witness sleepy Otto immediately after yesterday’s art zoom, where he was leaping, diving, knocking things over, running between my leg, chasing his sister and threatening to tear the house down. Carol & I enjoyed chatting and sketchbooking with a core group of women we’ve been meeting with since summer. It’s been fun getting to know everyone the last 6 months.
For most of our Zooms I planned everything carefully like the schoolmarm I am, but then for the last 2 sessions I became gloriously lazy and decided to just have us all work in our sketchbooks and chat. I felt okay about this since they were “bonus” sessions that I added after I fulfilled the promised summer sessions of Zoom. My favorite part of the entire session is seeing what everyone is working on inside their sketchbooks. My art practice has fallen to the wayside as I’ve become immersed in school life.
But I feel like I’ve got my head above the waves for now. Let’s see what develops.
I’ve taken an interest in following some artists on Substack who are writing blogs on their art process. This is terribly important I think and very inspiring. I will never abandon Instagram entirely, but I’ve always favored books over short stories. And when all the short stories start moving I can’t keep up. It all feels a bit manic to my slow way of absorbing content. Especially when thousands are doing it all at the same time. I remember when a video was such a rich pleasure, such a promise of some extra bit of treasure. Now it’s headache inducing and my favorite quiet artists are getting lost among advertisements, promotions, and reels.
Even on Pinterest where I go sometimes for drawing or painting reference there are so many moving ads.
In other news, after a dozen or so years, I gave The Orange Chair away on Craig’s List. A young woman and her boyfriend came for it in the dead of night and carted it off the porch and into their waiting vehicle. That chair gave me a lot of joy and I know it will keep inspiring all who gaze upon it for decades to come. I wonder if it will have a view onto the world.
I ordered a new-to-me chair from Kaiyo which repurposes and recycles used furniture. It’s a sort of wingback number. You’ll see soon enough. It too is moving to a new house (mine!) and inheriting a new caretaker. My nearly 60 year-old self needs a more comfortable spot to rest her generously proportioned tuchus. In the meantime, I moved the couch in front of the window. Coffee and books and cats and windows with a view.
Porch life Greece 1964. Can you spot me?
Boats and gouache on black paper. That’s what I did while connecting with everyone in the Zoom yesterday. I kept working afterwards. I hope to do more in the coming days. This is the last week of school before my three-week winter break. Santa Cruz here I come!
It’s been raining again and everything is newly fresh and alive. I walk out of the house in the early morning on my way to work and have to pause for a long look and a deep cold intake of air before I climb into my chariot and head off across the freeways to Chinatown.
Our December bulletin board. Very haphazard. I just staple the art on with whatever else the kids want me to put up (candy canes!) Despite being an artist I have zero interest in bulletin board displays. They’re always on the wonky side. We almost never have proper headings, but it’s festive and bright and I love looking at it every single day as I come into our classroom.
To see the Substackers I’m following (not all are art-related) click on my old-school blog links tab in the menu bar at the top of the blog. I love getting their newsletters in my inbox. If you want to get something similar from me, you can subscribe to my blog at the bottom of the page and my post will appear in your email just like magic.