Thursday, October 29, 2009

I.F. -- Frozen

I know, this is almost 2 weeks late, but here is my art for "Frozen"! My idea was to illustrate some of the colder places I've been, where I felt really frozen! (Click for larger image)

I had a grander scheme, but ended up doing these 2 pieces:

This first picture is me, Arvonn, and Marel in Santa Fe, NM, last Christmas. It was cold the day we visited (in the teens), but that was the coldest I'd experienced pretty much all year, now that I live in the Northwest where it doesn't get cold (and I am, sadly, never frozen). We got a few coffees to warm up over the course of the day!

My old apartment in Pittsburgh was plenty cold due to single-pane drafty windows and a hit-or-miss heating system. My cheapness also made me reluctant to turn the heat up too high even when it did work. The front sun porch was coldest of all, even with the plastic sheeting we put over the windows each winter. I wore a hat indoors -- sometimes coat and gloves, too. Here I am at my old desk, frozen! I sure do miss snow.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

a little MG story

This morning it was drizzling, about 52 degrees, gray. I did my breakfast routine, walked the dog, set off for the master gardener greenhouse in my zippy li'l Mazda. I like going up there on the highway because it's quick and I don't have to merge -- the ramp becomes exit-only for my exit.

I get there, people greet me enthusiastically, I talk a bit with Al about the NEW upcoming cookbook project I've volunteered for. There was a hosta to divide, so I found a serrated . . . machete? . . . and started sawing away. Potted up the clumps, talked with Bret and Toni, Nancy told me she loooooves my art, which was so nice to hear! (hmm, this involves the secret project which I'll talk about another day.) Nancy had brought in a jug of Vietnamese coffee, we all took some and joked around that we were soooo busy!

Potted up more hosta, moved on to pink yarrow, borrowed clippers, identified pulmonaria, talked about everything from my hair to learning German (with the Swiss lady) to mini-golf. Kept quiet when the conversation turned to being older than 50. Drank more coffee. Untangled the euonymus and started potting and clipping. Got my spare hosta clump (yay!) and walked back to my car.

As I drove home, I realized that the master gardener crowd makes me love being here. Sure, all that stuff I mentioned before about being homesick and ornery is true from time to time. But really, if I'm feeling mopey about it in the future, I'm just going to go hang with the MG's! I have so much fun!

Dear anyone who likes gardening: become a Master Gardener! You'll love it!!

Friday, October 16, 2009


OK, so first, I realize it is past 2am. What of it? My crazy, ever-changing artistic exploration adventures cannot be contained to "reasonable hours".


I signed up for NaNoWriMo 2009!! No, no -- not Nanaimo bars -- though I'd gladly welcome and consume (in tiny bites) a Nanaimo bar (or 5) at any time of any day. NaNoWriMo is this writers' motivational collective challenge where basically I will write a novel -- at least 50,000 words -- during the month of November. Conveniently, I've had . . . get ready . . . novel ideas for a novel for at least the past year and a half!

I guess I should say the convenience really lies in NaNoWriMo itself, because it will give me a fun reason to ACTUALLY write that novel (well, a first draft anyway), and not spend too much time on it if it turns out to be crap. Up till now I've just been thinking about it every now and then and

a) not really knowing how any of my ideas will go together, or
b) when I'd take the time to write them out in novel form, or
c) if I want it to be a novel at all, or perhaps rather a serial comic book, which
d) means that I was hemming and hawing over the whole project and
e) just basically doing nothing and feeling overwhelmed and sad and never starting it properly.

However, I have peppered a few notebooks with ideas over all this time, so I have something to go on. And the whole point is quantity over quality and punching out that rough draft, which is exactly what I need right now! Thank you, meandering internet trail that stemmed from an Etsy newsletter, thank you people/blogs I remembered mentioning the event in the past, and thank you, NaNoWriMo! Anyone want to participate with me? :D

Friday, October 2, 2009

Illustration Friday: Germs

Inspired by a picture of salmonella that Arvonn found for me, where they looked just like beached manatees!