Sunday, May 25, 2014

Dancing with Resistance

The next page in my Graphic Grannies Work Book laid out
FRUSTRATION! I need to differentiate between psychological hunger and real hunger, although I did go and get myself some nuts and sesame sticks…psychological hunger starts with frustration. I have been mucking around on the computer to try to discover what is what about this 3D Issue program, and winding down into frustration from knowing just a little, but not enough about the mechanics of my computer. No one seems to put prices on attractive items online these days, like programs that will recreate my color/photo/layout for publication, and my budget is low by choice. I chose between freedom now, and a more comfortable amount of money later. I will make do with what I have and push to make the choice worth while to ME.

Double Graphic Grannies page from April...combo collage and drawing

It’s funny, I’ve worked for myself, as opposed to having a regular job for half of my career, but this stage of not Having to make money seems to have sapped some of my usual drive and focus…then there are the effects of aging…and the fact that my liver won’t allow me to just take more ibuprofen and keep going, so I get tired and have to stop...probably should have started doing that a long time ago, pacing myself...but we never know how long we’re going to last and what opportunities will arise.

Continuing with the birth of Graphic Grannie

The unreasonableness if my depression, in the face of all this time and materials makes me think it’s a gift from my ancestors…the hereditary bad chemicals. I’m so happy I’ve been keeping a journal and all my sketchbooks from high school on, many of the same issues have plagued me over the years…so many materials and not being able to start, not giving myself the time and space to just play, feeling that I MUST be PRODUCTIVE. I love the writing I was doing and the descriptions of dreams from May of 2005. I was finally deciding that living in a secure place with someone who didn’t support me, my art, my stretching and exploring, wasn’t worth continuing. The house was paid for, I had a supportive group of artists around me, enough per diem OT work at $45 an hour to provide sustenance and whatever else I could imagine desiring…It wasn’t enough…and only I could determine that.

One of my greatest fears is that the drusen that are occluding my retinas will win

In my other blog, I’ve been posting about a new series of wall hangings using material from my own and my ancestors’ lives. Mom was free and independent at 63, but took on raising her first two granddaughters to fill her days. I choose Art at 67. Now the cross country trip is my Big Adventure…have I inherited my father’s restless urge to push boundaries and explore. Will the aging of my body hold me back? Does my mind seek the easy way out of novelty, rather than depth? Brain Pickings today (5/25/14) is all about my issues, not all that unique.

My own memories and Graphic Grannie's Combine

 Alan Lightman, “Perhaps with the proper training of my unruly mind and emotions, I could refrain from wanting things that cannot be. Perhaps I could accept the fact that in a few short years, my atoms will be scattered in wind and soil, my mind and thoughts gone, my pleasures and joys vanished, my “I-ness” dissolved in an infinite cavern of nothingness. But I cannot accept that fate even though I believe it to be true. I cannot force my mind to go to that dark place. ‘A man can do what he wants,’ said Schopenhauer, ‘but not want what he wants.’”

My planned road trip across the country and into my past

If against our wishes and hopes, we are stuck with mortality, does mortality grant a beauty and grandeur all its own? Even though we struggle and howl against the brief flash of our lives, might we find something majestic in that brevity? Could there be a preciousness and value to existence stemming from the very fact of its temporary duration? And I think of the night-blooming cereus, a plant that looks like a leathery weed most of the year. But for one night each summer its flower opens to reveal silky white petals, which encircle yellow lacelike threads, and another whole flower like a tiny sea anemone within the outer flower. By morning, the flower has shriveled. One night of the year, as delicate and fleeting as a life in the universe. Brain Pickings

Home Town...current collage series

Go deep, go deep. I think I’m ready to try messing with some portraits more like Alice Neel and Ben Shawn. I’ve almost finished the 100 women I planned.

Jeff Tocher, finished yesterday, branching out.


Wednesday, May 07, 2014

The Church of the Memoir

Experimental collages expanded with significant phrases

I’ve been reading even more voraciously now that I have more time…and have the luxury of letting one book or idea lead to another. I can sit at my home computer and put in requests to the local library system. Now, in addition to lots of memoirs, I’m re-reading Graham Greene’s, THE END OF THE AFFAIR, Annie Dillard’s THE MAYFAIRS, Kathleen Winter’s ANNABEL—about love, relationships, identity. I use writing to figure out my own life since college, and after quitting my health care job it’s usually at least a page a day…figuring out my meaning of my own life. With Greene’s novel, I see so clearly now how authors use the characters to work out different aspects of their own questions, in this case about the meaning and use of belief in god. I see that he gave his first name, Henry, to the mild husband of the woman whom the narrator, Bendix, loves. The character with the flawed face, in denying the existence of a god who would burden him, makes the female character believe in the bargain she has made to give up her love, if he is only spared death.

My friend's daughter in the Army in war

Now I have the time freedom to wander and learn…more focused than in college. Reading about Greene, thinking about books, making a course of study that changes direction from day to day. A  link to Susan Cain’s TED talk on the Power of Introverts, and how solitude is an important aspect of being able to work creatively justifies my seeming anti-social behavior.

Another Quilt Block, so relaxing to play with color and texture!

I treasure a Meyers Briggs that identified me as someone who was content to sit back and let others lead…until my particular skills are needed. I’m not pushy, and I don’t need to make a lot of money, as long as I am healthy, safe, warm, well fed, and have access to books and art supplies. I took a class a few days ago on publishing in today’s techno-market, and realized that I don’t have a sufficient market, and the technology is not sufficiently-advanced to do the combination of Doll Making as a Transformative Process book and class that I envisioned. An interim project is working on a memoir of sorts, of my own life and my ancestors, using images, fabrics, writing I have collected. I think there are computer programs that I would like to master, that will help with my evolving path…Every picture tells a story and every story generates pictures.  Stay Tuned!

The new series of fabric/mixed hangings, using my own and my family's history