Sunday, February 17, 2013

Changing Memories by Remembering

Kim Hanson
When I run into the same information in different places, I think maybe it has something to do with my life. This time it was the mention in Brain Pickings  that we change our memories by remembering them. We each go around in our own private universes, perceiving and cataloging what we see, or what we think we see and what we think about that. 

Kim saw her portrait on Thursday evening. We do yoga together, to keep ourselves honest and in good health, and because it costs $10 to go out and do yoga. Afterwards we ate one of my comfort meals: grilled tuna and cheese sandwiches. 

Current Journal Page
Kim is a scientist and has an analytical brain, 
which I enjoy. I am well aware that my portraits 
only resemble my subjects slightly, but they do 
capture some essence.

Kim said that she recognized Kristen and Pam 
more than she did herself, maybe because we 
don't spend as much time studying ourselves
as we do other people.

Current Journal Page

Drawing, cartooning, graphic novels, animation have been a braided thread through my life. I'm happy that I saved all the sketchbooks going back into high school,  and journals back to college in the Sixties. 

When I read some of them, I shake my head at how self-deluded I was, entering and staying in an abusive relationship for 17 years...the memory is altered (less painful) over time, with an overlay of wisdom?  Maybe
                                                         experience and self-forgiveness for being dumb.         

All the raw material I've compulsively produced
over the years may become part of my current 
art and writing.
I keep a pad on the dining table for thoughts

I've embarked on a self-study course to bring back
my cartooning/drawing/ hand-eye coordination skills.
Graphic novels and animation allow the artist to be 
in control of ALL the aspects of a story. On the bottom
left, I'm copying other artists' drawings to get a feel 
for their style, on the right, teasing out my own. 

Maybe it took all these years to get enough distance
from my own story to start to tell it. I see that I'm still
prone to creating my own mythology from scant evidence, to dramatize or romanticize events and people that touch my life. Better to realize that now.

Joan Didion: "I think we are well advised to keep on
nodding terms with the people we used to be, 
whether we find them attractive company or not. 
Otherwise they turn up unannounced and surprise us,
come hammering on the mind's door at 4 a.m. of a bad
night and demand to know who deserted them, who 
betrayed them, who is going to make amends. We forget all too soon the things we thought we could never forget. We forget the loves and the betrayals alike, forget what we whispered and what we screamed, forget who we were."  Thanks to Brain Pickings

                                     I'll keep writing, drawing, remembering--
                                                   Stay Tuned!

Sunday, February 03, 2013

Aging with Awareness: World and Word

Port Williams Beach, looking north

I just finished reading Paul Auster’s WINTER JOURNAL, “falling through the rift between world and word,” musing on his life and aging at 64. I’ll turn 66 in a month, and yes I do also see that I don’t have as much energy as I used to. I’m studying aging as hard as I’ve studied being a woman, breaking free from abuse, being an Artist in all its ramifications. Although, indeed, I’ve been aging since the moment I was conceived…now I can’t ignore the process.

Port Williams, looking south, 1/30/13

Last night I watched The Bucket List for the first time, and was happy to realize that I am Happy in my life, in what I’ve accomplished and survived, and accepting of not being the Best or Changing the World in Big ways, but still interested in discovering new things, learning skills, experiencing, creating. I have to build in tasks that involve sitting or lying down after a couple of hours working in the yard or at my easel. My doctor has told me that the 

Sedimentary layers, inspiration
ibuprofen I used for years to hold down the aches enough to keep going is killing my kidneys. My eyes and my thumbs are threatening to wear out. It’s difficult to even imagine an end to the Universe that I know as my Self, but here I am…

Textures, a study in gray

All the inspiration a person would
ever need is just waiting to be seen/ heard/
felt/experienced. I am lucky to have an art
passion that keeps me interested in the next thing,
and the next and the next.

Hint of color in the gray, glowing pink on the outside

Immersion, making, looking, reading, collecting all generate new ideas and new visions. I will never be bored.

A claw, more color, shape, Avatar inspiration
I watched Avatar for the first time this weekend, too. A whole world built out of the minds of those many movie makers...and lots of time and money.

In Seattle last Saturday, shopping with 
my brother, David, the chayote squash
reminding me of winkled toothless observers of the passing scene...
"world and word"

                                                       How is your Winter?