Friday, 20 March 2015

All Art, All the Time

Note:  This post was originally published on April 29, 2014.  All posts prior to this date - along with images from April 2014 to March 2015 - have been lost forever to the Internet black hole.  


I'm typing this with terracotta-coloured clay under my fingernails and acrylic gesso smeared across my hands.  I'd be surprised if I didn't have art supplies smudged across my face.  My hair is up in what is probably the messiest top-knot of all time.  I'm a mess, and I love it.

{image lost, probably forever}

Lately I've been kind of mopey and stressed.  I haven't been able to contribute to the household finances very much, and I'm not okay with that... but the web design biz has been slow for long enough that I'm pretty close to giving up on it after 14 years in the game (more on that in a later post).  I've also been someone bitter about our pregnancy complications, and while everything is currently going well (*knock on wood*!) and I'm starting to feel better about things, I'm still kind of pouty that we're considered a "high-risk" pregnancy.  Plus, modified bed rest is super boring.  Oh, and also, I've been having a terrible time sleeping lately.  Baby H has taken up in-utero Greek dancing or something, which he likes to practice around midnight.  I'm also convinced that he's using my bladder as a trampoline, because I can't make it through the night without getting up to pee, and Jack has recently decided that it's his life's ambition to sleep in whatever position takes up all of my space and makes me as uncomfortable as possible - and bonus points if he can manage to shove all four of his paws in to my spine.

*whew* Wow, did I just go on a rant or what?  But bear with me, it's totally topical.

I want to be an artist.  I have an amazing artist friend who makes her living selling awesome paintings and I'll admit it... I am super jealous.  That, you guys.  That is what I want to do with my life.  I bet you when people ask Christie (the amazing artist friend referenced above) what she does for a living, she says "I'm an artist".  BAM.  Full of confidence and without turning it in to a question.  Wanna know what I say?

{image lost}

This Chick, who I have sort of turned into my very own life coach, already knows all of this about me, because she's been listening to me whine about wanting to be an artist for what probably feels like forever - (sorry, Jodi) - and she is not shy about verbally kicking my ass a little bit when I need it.  "Oh, you want to be an artist?" she said one day, after I'd thrown myself a particularly pathetic pity party via Facebook chat.  "You keep saying that, but what did you paint today?  What did you draw?  Show me what you made."

I wish that I could tell you that that was enough to kick my art goals in to high gear, but it turns out that apparently I needed something more to really set the wheels in motion.  And that's where my über-rant up there comes in.  I started getting overwhelmed with stress and crankiness and self-pit and lack of sleep, and one day last week, I turned to George and just kind of let it all come pouring out:

"All I want to do all day is art.  I want to paint, and I want to draw, and I want to bury my hands in clay, and I want to make tiny Fimo miniatures, and I want to... I don't know, do glass blowing or whatever.  I just want to make things all of the time and I want that to be my job, and why can't I make that happen?!"

{meltdown image lost to the interwebs}

*pant* *pant* *pant*

George's first response was to advise me to maybe NOT take up glass-blowing, as he doesn't feel like someone is as accident-prone and clumsy as I am belongs anywhere near molten glass balanced precariously on a blowpipe.  And then he said, "So that was quite the outburst.  Why don't you go sculpt something with the new clay I bought you and try to relax a bit?"

So I made some snails.

{you got it... image lost forever.}

And then I started on a little tree house...

{bye bye, picture}

And now, our dining room table is covered in:  three sculpted and primed snails, one large clay mushroom, a drying terracotta tree trunk, a bowl of slip, a container full of paint brushes, a bottle of acrylic gesso, two primed and drying canvases, a bottle of ink, a calligraphy pen, watercolor paper, a notepad covered in art project ideas, my laptop, and my Wacom tablet.  (George is totally okay with me spreading everything out across the dining room table instead of using my drafting table, of course, and never complains about it at all.)

So, here goes:

Hi, I'm AJ, and I'm an artist.  I have a lot of projects on the go right now, and I'd love it if you'd follow my art page on Facebook and "like" the kind of stuff you want to see more of, because I'm going to be posting a bunch of different things while I figure out my style.


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