Wednesday, January 7, 2015

new years resolutions.

i was at a dinner party last friday night. 5 couples. one guy said, so.... .who has a  resolution for the new year .... and no one said anything .... it was weird ... and finally said ... oh come on people! none of you have a resolution? i have about 12 ... plenty to share! how can you NOT have a resolution, a plan, a dream, a goal? .... and they all kinda laughed at me ... and quizzed me .... why did i have so many? it was just more to not work out! ... and i explained that if their resolutions weren't working out, they were doing them wrong!! make it something you WANT badly enough to actually do it!  and then i tossed out that last year i had read 87 books. 87. which was about 20 times more than the table's average!  ..... i just said that my resolution was to read every day and as many books as possible ... if it had been 63 books, would they have been unimpressed? no ... that still would have been fine ... if it had been 112? i think it would have been the same surprise as 87 was.  the point is, that aiming for a big target, even if you don't hit it, you did a lot of work to get close .... like, if your goal was to lose 90 pound and you lost 95, was that a fail? don't think so.

in 2011, when i first started keeping track on this blog, i read 100 books
2012, i read 103....
2013, i read ONLY 76 ... but how big is that? 76 books in a year is more than one a week.
in 2014, i read 87 .....
in 2015, so far i've read one. i'm right on track for a big year of reading again.

but other resolutions?
last year i did art more than 100 times (professional)
last year i worked out more than 200 times (physical fitness/health)
last year i went out to lunch more than 50 times with girlfriends (emotional well being) 
last year i weaned myself off artificial sweeteners ....no diet coke since april .... (nutrition)

so this year ... 
i have the books again ... 
and i have some exercise goals .... 
and i have a new one. it's hard and horrid and i know i need to do it and i want to do it ...... 
and it is a super traditional new years resolution that usually fails!! .... i am going to clean and organize my house .... i am going to touch every single thing in my house ... in every drawer, closet, cupboard, shelf ... everything, everywhere ... i am tossing things as fast as i can ... or i hope to..... i 've started in my kitchen/dining room/living room. all sorts of cabinets have been emptied, cleaned, restored .... i've not donated anything yet, but have a big pile ... and threw a bunch away .... 

and here's the junk drawer from the kitchen ... not junky at all ... the label has been in there for ages ... just generally hidden by mounds of stuff.....

but that wasn't too hard .... the hard will be the basement ... the finished basement that i call my studio ... and the unfinished (how did we let it get like that?) part .... THOSE will be hard .... crazy hard. but based on my new years resolution track record, i've got this.



Tuesday, January 6, 2015

first resolution post of the year.

i am an EXCELLENT new years resolution maker. 
i only make ones i really, really, really want to work on.
i also make ones that are big and vast and maybe a bit ambiguous ... so that even if you don't make it, you do something awesome .... 
who is this quote by? shoot for the moon, even if you miss, you'll land amidst the stars .... 
anyway ...that's my theory.

but this year, i'm going outside my usual box of goals and dreams and resolutions ... 
and doing the most oft failed resolution (besides from stop smoking ... which would be easy for me since i don't) ....organize! clean! purge! tidy up, tessie! 

so this is the impetus for my resolution ... just how badly i've let my studio go ...
 this is a look in and to the right ...

 and this is a look in to the left:

but i'm not worried ... in fact ... i'm going for touching every single thing in my whole house this year .... clearing it out ... organizing ... tidying .... getting rid of extras and too much and unused and unloved .... whew. at least i have a year to show you the after pics! 

Monday, January 5, 2015

the storied life of aj fikry ... book review

of the 87 books i read in 2014, the storied life of aj fikry was one of my very favorites.

the book was everything i love in a novel ..... a super quirky main character with an optimistic outlook ..... that character finding himself and simultaneously finding joy unexpectedly..... sometimes you read a book and all the characters are morally reprehensible ( donna tartt's, the secret history) or you just want them to pull themselves together and save themselves (like lots of characters in oprah's first many book club choices) .... or the book is so full of despair that you only finish it for the happy ending that doesn't happen (gap creek, by robert morgan)...... but aj fikry and most of the people he surrounds himself with are lovely people. aj gets dealt bad cards but makes a grand comeback .... all while living on an island (that i'd love to visit even though it is fictional) and owning a book store .... i think the book store story element was my favorite part ... lots of author name dropping and novel name dropping and literary metaphors .... this book is a about a bookseller and a bookstore and well written for book lovers.






Saturday, January 3, 2015

pottery for the new year.

elizabeth, what do you do?
oh, i am an artist, i say.... 
what sort of work do you do?
i do mixed media collage primarily, i like using oddball bits and pieces of paper... from afar i have fairly traditional compositions, but up close, there are secrets hidden in the layers.... lately i've been doing a fair bit of drawing, mandalas, zentangles, calligraphy .... i fear that it is mostly because my studio has gotten to be such a state that i am shunning it by choosing to draw in the family room at the coffee table or at my workstation (otherwise known as the bar in the kitchen) ..... i also do pottery, but that's just a hobby.

i always down play pottery. i sell my canvases. i give away my pottery. and that's ok, i guess .... but i'm not sure why i do it.... some of my pottery is pretty darn good ... some of my pottery is awesome even.

last  semester, in the pottery class i take, i worked on this ....
in my head these are flowers. i know that's weird, cause they are houses, right? but each fat house has a spot at the bottom for me to put a stem ... i'm planting them. i think. this is where my pottery intersects with my painting, cause those houses sure look like my collage houses, right?



pottery class starts back up in just a week or so .... and i'll be back to making fat house flowers, i think ... and if my resolution for art works out, i'll have a couple canvases started before that too.... 

fat house flowers ... the marketing department might need to work on that .... 

Friday, January 2, 2015

happy new year ... and they all lived happily ever after.

happy new year.
i'm bringing the blog back to life this year.
in 2007 and 2008, my art PEAK of effort, production and sales, i had more than 200 blog posts ... cause i had a lot to blog about ...
2009, 10, 11 ... i blogged more than 100 times each of those years.....
and in the last three years, fewer than 100 times each year.

my priorities have changed here and there ... i was doing less art, so having less to blog about ....
but this blog is (one of) my new year's resolutions .... it will get me writing more (i love writing) ... it will get me painting more (i love painting) so that i have something to write about .... and it will get me dreaming more (i love dreaming) because if you put your dreams down in print you are much more likely to work on making dreams come true ....

so ...
i have declutter resolutions (less stuff in my house ... especially my art studio)
i have health resolutions (helps that i'm a fitbit addict)
i have nutrition resolutions (eat more cookies .... actually, i'm still sorting this one out)
i have art resolutions (paint more, draw more, be more creative more often)
i have writing resolutions (i wrote a poem on jan. 1! )
i have a blog resolutions (get back on that horse)
i have computer/photos resolutions (this is the hardest one)
and i have adventure/travel/dream resolutions ....

and on we go ....

this 12 by 12 canvas was the last one of 2014 sent out into the world .... a friend is gifting it as wedding present .....
who doesn't want to live happily ever after?




Wednesday, November 12, 2014

i went to camp

i spent this past weekend in north carolina ... near hendersonville ... at kanuga ... for camp .... i've been to kanuga loads of times ... i think i've loved every time .... it is a magical place .... but this time ... it was like double magic.....

the camp was called life is a verb .... and was run by the amazing patti digh who wrote the book life is a verb ....the book is about living your best life .... i have art in the book .... and i have used it as a sunday school curriculum for an art journaling class .... i've read my copy of the book countless times .... so..... pattie is amazing. the book is amazing. the camp was amazing. the people there were artists and musicians and writers and poets and dreamers .....they were amazing. it's almost too much to process to spend the weekend with so many that are so extraordinary .... i could write many blog posts just about the musicians ... or just about the poets (oh my gosh, the poets!) ... or the artists .... or the yoga instructors who made me think i should turn into a yoga sort ....   what?  haven't i don't a blog post on ten reasons i'm NOT meant to be a yoga sort? maybe not. but i could have.

so, i've spent some time since i came back, reestablishing a writing practice, nursing tennis elbow (wait, maybe that doesn't belong in this blog), thinking like a poet, and sorting through all the paraphernalia and paper bits i brought back and putting them into my camp journal ....

i'm not sure camp is a small thing ... but it is taking up a large spot in my heart and my brain right now ... stay tuned. maybe one day i'll be brave enough to share a poem i've written.  





Wednesday, August 27, 2014

ralph waldo

after all my people left this morning, i started my day on my computer ... and this quote dropped into my inbox .... one of the quote a day things i get .... and i loved it ... so i wrote it down ... luckily i just happen to have a pile of prepainted notecards ready to go .... i actually need to make some more .... i like the idea of acknowledging blunders and absurdities ... i like that rwe called the yucky parts of the day blunders and absurdities .... and i've always been a firm believer, with scarlett o'hara, that tomorrow is a new day .... and i like the idea that i can start a day serenely AND with high spirit .... those usually seem diametrically opposed to me ... but i like the idea of serene, zen, calm AND high spirit, go go go, zippity do dah, start the day ....

finish every day and be done with it ... this morning i checked my fitbit stats and my sleep stat says it took me 2 minutes to fall asleep last night... two whole entire minutes between the day and trying to be asleep .... i rocked that whole emerson "be done with " the day thing ....

Sunday, August 10, 2014

drawing .....

i've made a lot of notecards this year .... for the ICAD art card challenge ... and just for myself to hang up or give away .... this ice cream cone is reminiscent of the ice cream cones i drew with the emmaus house kids at summer camp ... i taught a drawing/doodling/coloring class ....
 i didn't snap any pics of the kids' ice cream cones ... but above are some robots .... and below, cupcakes. yum.
so i've been drawing more than ever .... notebooks full of doodles and ideas! i'm not as inclined to blog all of it as i am finished canvases ... but just in case you were wondering what i was doing, now you know.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

bananas and pottery

i've been in love with pottery this summer.  i've been taking an evening class with a best pal ... and it has been awesome in a way that it hasn't been for a while: i think about it A LOT when i'm not there ... i have plans and ideas and notions ...
 i need to find about 20 gift giving events to release some of my newly fired inventory out into the world .....
bright colors and textures make these align with my canvases too .... 
and orange ... orange is the best.

Friday, August 8, 2014

new thing...

so a friend added/invited me to a new facebook page ... well new to me .... it is for local artisans and locals looking for hand made .... well ... i do hand made ... hand made artsy stuff ... so i signed up and posted some pics of some 12 by 12 canvases ...i'm not sure anything will come of it ... it kinda seems TOO easy, right .... here's the page .... it's called intown atlanta handcrafted marketplace .... IAHM ... it's a mouthful ...

and these are the paintings/collages that i have listed ..... wish me luck ... we'll see where this goes ..... worth a try!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

back to pottery......

i don't usually go to pottery over the summer .... but this summer! i am! ..... and after not having pottery for four or five or six weeks, it was a marvel just how absolutely awesome it was to go back. i missed it.  all i did was work on underglazing this platter .... it's going through a second bisque fire as i type ... next monday i'll clear glaze it .....and then i'll need to look for someone to give it to!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

summertime reading .... 47 books, year to date.

 http://ebeckartist.blogspot.com/p/2014-books.html

so there you go ....i've updated my book list .... i've read a bunch of good ones since my last update!
what have you been reading? anything i should put in my kindle queue?