Feb 242018

This whole “Saturday Morning” + thing title theme was feeling prosaic and tired, but now that it is something different each Saturday, I rather like it, in an obstinate sort of way.

Almost done mixed media pieces.

This morning, I wanted to do a collage, although I ended up painting quite a bit more than I thought I would. More of a general mixed media piece instead of collage. Coffee and music and art – such a good time. Some parts have to dry before I can finish it, but this is pretty close to done. I used the recent stamp test sheet from making niece’s fabric for the bag lining. Cats, skulls, stars, all very me. Had a good time. Think this Saturday morning art stuff is the cat’s pyjamas.

Feb 082018

I don’t have consistent lunch breaks anymore, so this habit isn’t going to continue much.
Lunch paintings
I wanted to convey the feeling of sitting inside with a cup of coffee while looking out at a snowy landscape. I do not like how these turned out.

Lunch paintings
Short break, so I went for a simple subject I might be able to complete in time. I like these.

I’m going to have to get around to explaining my sketchbook testing this year, but today is not that day. Such suspense, I know!

Jan 292018

Last week I found myself with 13 minutes of lunch time left before the next work round started. I’d wasted the other 45 minutes doing work that needs done. Foolish me. I decided to use the same watercolor crayons I’ve been playing with and do a sketch of pears, one for each of today’s notebooks.
A pair of pears.

I was still putting away items as I got on to my work call, but I did it. Art over lunch = success. Now, maybe I can focus on getting more shit done at home instead of getting sucked into video games. Nothing wrong with spending hours on games if you enjoy it, but I also need to fold laundry, take out the trash, and get a whole bunch of other stuff done. After a full work day of dealing with bullshit, the lure of an engrossing round of amusement tends to win out.

Guess this turned into more of a frustration vent than a post about art.

Jan 242018

Lunchtime doodles.
Had a short lunch and used some water soluble crayons to scribble some colors behind a rabbit space. I thought I’d leave it as colorful negative space, but it didn’t look right, so I grabbed a brush and used outlines to define it. Also used a bit of water to blend some of the back color, then added more lines with fineliners.

Not much in the way of lunch breaks lately. I’m spoiled from the holidays and could use a break already, but there isn’t one coming anytime soon. Tonight, I’ll play video games for a spot of escapism.

Jan 162018

It seems that Saturday mornings are my favorite time in the workshop. The entire weekend stretches out before me, there is a fresh pot of coffee, Friday (my workshop companion cat) is happy to be there, and there is that strangely pleasant, almost “hungover” feeling from the Friday night weekend-start celebration the night before that makes me want to be creative in a free, chill and short term fashion. I like that. I’m often trying to scratch down the most clever of the ideas I had when falling asleep the night before, or to flesh out the tidbits I do recall, anyway. All of this combines to be simply the best feeling; peaceful, happy, mortal and alive. Love it.

Last Saturday, I felt like painting and decided on the most recent tree sketch. I didn’t want the self-pressure of a “serious” painting, so I grabbed some mid grade acrylics from the stash and a pair of 4″ canvas panels, set up my desktop easel right on my computer desk and played some techy-meditation music.
Painting with Friday the cat.
Friday joined me, of course. That is her chair now. My kitty co-pilot. I don’t know how I’m ever going to get all her cat hair off that quilt.
As often happens, it took longer than I thought and I ended up spending almost three hours on these little things. That’s okay, I enjoyed doing it. They didn’t end up the way I envisioned them – which is true of every single tree + light painting I’ve ever done, and is probably the biggest reason I’ve never shared any of them before.
Tree paintings
Here they are. I still need to finish the backs. I’m going to cover them and put small hooks on them so they can hang up in the house. Maybe. I think I only want one, instead of two. If it turns out that way, I’ll put the other in my Etsy shop. Perhaps someone else is out in the world, wanting a tiny, simple painting.

I haven’t been able to paint over my work lunch breaks lately, and I wonder if this recent painting desire stems from that lack.

Jan 082018

You know what’s up.

This was an image I had in my head when falling asleep on Friday night and recalled on Saturday morning. This sketch doesn’t fully capture the feel, but it is enough for me to remember. I have a number of “light through trees” painting ideas. Don’t know if I’ll ever get to them or if they’ll just litter my sketchbooks forever.

These sorta-roses were the product of the January ArtSnacks box. The slightly-orangey red is from a Posca paint marker. I’d heard of them, but never had one to try for myself. They are advertised to not bleed through paper, which is a tall claim, but they seem to live up to it. The green and now-gray are Marabu Aqua paint pens, which are water soluble. That aqua color was pressed into service as stem and leaves, while the black one I diluted and used as a gray background. The Tombow Fude pen gives the final black lines. They also had a Sumo grip mechanical pencil, which was just a fat pencil, but it did have an exposed eraser – mech pencils usually have covered erasers which means I use my separate eraser instead of uncapping the things. This was exposed, so I used it. That was nice.

This was my first sketch of the new year and I didn’t really know what to draw, so I wrote out some little tidbits from the day. You can see that I’ve started keeping notes of what I’ve used on the pages, as it relates to the sketchbooks they’re in because I’m testing about a dozen sketchbooks this year – but we can talk about that later.

Last public sketch of 2017. Doodles over a short lunch.

Drawn on the sofa when assaulted by the aggressive smell that happens when our littlest cat, Moxie, drops her evil turds in the litterbox. Even she knows they are extra stinky; she tries for much longer than any other cats to cover up that smell. I drew this to suffer through the minute it takes for the wall of stink to pass by.

Another sofa sketch. A friend got us tickets to the latest Star Wars movie for the evening before the Solstice Party. We’d been planning to wait a while to see it, but you can’t turn down tickets someone got for you! And, in the nice, new, reclining seats and super-sound-BrandNameAudioBS-stuff theater, too. Despite having lots to do, I was excited to take time out for a movie, a night out with friends, and was considering wearing my ridiculously shiny dress to the movie. Thinking about how cold I get in those recliners for the length of a movie, I wore normal clothes instead. And after weeks of suffering through broken, mangled, snapped, and bent fingernails, I purchased some acrylic fake nails to protect my fingertips for a while. My nails are always incredibly short, but the busier I get the harder I am on them and I was to the point of superglue patching then. I didn’t wear the pretty nails for either event, and a later test shows that I can only make it to day two before I do something that pops off one or more of them. Oh well. I can save the pretty nails for some special occasion that lasts for less than a day.

Work-annoyance-venting sketches seem like they should have a special category, but they don’t. I painted this after trying to work through (and past) a coworker to get stuff done. I felt better afterwards, anyway.

There. Now we’re all caught up on the sketches I’m up for sharing. On to more catching up next. Like an information exposure debt.

Nov 202017

Lunch hour painting
Felt like I needed a pick-me-up on Monday, but settled for painting such instead. The cat’s expression is one I’m working on.

Lunch hour painting
I had no inspiration this day, so I swiped some paint across a page, then made animals from the blobs. I don’t know what creature that big-fisted pink thing is. I also don’t know what the animals might be protesting or supporting. I painted, that’s enough.

Lunch hour painting
Numbats eat termites and they are adorable – what more could you want. Unfortunately, this South Australian animal is endangered, too.

Lunch hour painting
Know that Tom Petty song, Wildflowers? The lyrics go, “You belong among the wildflowers ..” and so on. I had a note in my inspiration folder to finish it as “six feet under them” and finally got the spark to do it. Although the small size makes it more like “at least three feet under them.” Love this one.

Nov 132017

Three this week! Woot!
Lunch hour painting, coals from Baba Yaga.
Most people who know stories of Baba Yaga first envision the chicken legged house, or the witch herself, but the part of the most familiar story that sticks with me is the coals. It was the goal of her quest, the coals were well-earned, and they are hastily given at the end in a skull. That part lives in my head. Magical, red and gray coals being tossed into a human skull for carrying. It always seemed the bone wouldn’t be enough insulation for carrying. I always imagine Vasalisa picking up the first sturdy branch she found that had forks to wedge the skull into during her travels home. Last year when Slick and I were clearing branches from our yard, I found a really good one. I even tried it on against my head to be sure, and it was a good fit for a human skull. I idly wanted to toss some red LED battery lights in an appropriate Halloween skull and make my Vasalisa’s torch. Fortunately for my project list, I didn’t keep track of the branch – although it is probably still out there.
In one of the subscription art supply boxes I receive, there was a skinny landscape format watercolor sketchbook. (Just a link if you’re interested, no affiliate or any strings at all.) I’d seen it before but not purchased because I don’t do city or land scapes and I was unsure I’d find uses for it specifically. Between this sketchbook and a sample sheet of some truly luscious Daniel Smith Watercolors, I was carried gently on a wave of painting thoughts back to the lunchtime paintings. The long paper called out for this torch rendition, although I didn’t use the WC samples on this.

Lunch hour painting, taxidermy fox.
In one of my dreams, Slick and I attended a sort of estate sale, but it was for an institute or club of some kind. There were art books, pieces of furniture, a variety of things. I went out some dark, double doors onto a small courtyard fenced with black wrought iron. The sidewalk was damp with rain and the tree leaves sparkled as their wet surfaces caught sunlight. In the shadow of a branch, I saw what at first appeared to be a fox. As I got closer, I saw it wasn’t really a fox. The fur was flat and the snout had an oddly long shape to it. It was a taxidermied fox, and it appeared unnatural enough for me to remember later.

Lunch hour painting, a silly fucking cat on the internet.
We wound down an evening looking at funny cat clips online and this one stuck with me. The angle of his eyes and that single tooth sticking out won me over. Had to snap a screenshot and paint this silly cat. It was fun. I like combining a couple layers of pen linework and watercolor. The look of it pleases me.

Now to see if this week is equally productive.

Nov 062017

Between workload, inconveniently timed meetings, and the almost-dead creative funk, I only got in two lunchtime paintings the past couple weeks.

Painting of Tasmanian devils.
I had a pic of a pair of Tasmanian devils in my Inspiration folder for a while now, and it was time. I like how their markings look like Batman symbols.

Painting of a wolf in the workplace.
After a work thing, I had to paint this. Wolf in the Workplace seems to be sprouting as a theme for me. At least, when I’m painting at work.

Got some good creative work time in yesterday and will share some pics soon. Yea for sewing!

Oct 162017

Lunch hour painting
Lacking energy, motivation and time, I bunted with an easy page of autumn leaves. This day, I’d hoped to have a walk to enjoy the leaf colors, but it snowed and destroyed my plans. So, I have these colorful ones, at least.

Lunch hour painting

I will take your heart with me
carry it in a red bag tied around my neck.
Down the path to the copse
and the tiny cabin we never got around to.
More of a shack, really.

We will wake with the sunlight and birdsong,
your heart and I. No alarm clocks here.
We will forage in the woods for toppings
and roast them for a pizza in the evening.
It won’t be very tasty.

We will drink cider and more cider by starlight;
we will serenade the sliver moon.
The night creatures will scoff at us,
but we are free, wild, and alive!
And maybe a little drunk.

I will bring your heart back to you
you are weary, worn, flat.
Your heart and I will remind you
how to believe in magic, how to live.
Because life is magic.

Lunch hour painting
Voodoo lilies, or corpse flowers. Once a year, the giant varieties give off a rotting corpse scent to attract carrion flies, their pollinators. Some medium varieties are a food source; the spadix (big center part) is quite tasty and part of many dishes, having a gel-forming property when combined and cooked. I think they’re quite pretty and have carved a couple blocks to see if I can pull off a small fabric print.

That’s it for this week.

Oct 092017

Inktober has started and while I am not interested in using a month long challenge to focus on my ink linework, I thought I’d get involved just enough to have some fun. I combined two drawing prompt lists, the official Inktober one and another by an artist more focused on drawing than ink, Drawlloween.
Drawing Prompt List

Drawing Prompt List
The official list wasn’t interesting enough, nor was Drawlloween, so I’m doing mashups of the two together. Since my Inktober is strictly based on the fun I might have doing it, I am only doing it when I feel like it, am inspired to, and don’t have anything else going on that might be more fun.

Inktober Day One
Swift Werewolf. This was not a lunch hour painting, but an evening workshop bit. I thought it would be amusing.

Inktober Day Two
Goblin, Divided. This was another workshop one. I say eat the cake first. You don’t know what can happen next. “An asteroid could hit. Do you want to be the schmuck who apologizes right before the world ends?” Community quote. I’ll likely go back and add color to these later, when I’m in a crunch and only have time or capacity for something like that.

Wolf needs coffee
Wolf needs coffee. Certainly inspired by work nonsense. I wanted to express how I felt and wanted an animal to stand in for me so I quickly took a couple of those stupid internet personality quizzes. What animal are you? One said wolf, another said ring-tailed lemur because I like groups (WTF?!) and another failed to process. So, I went with wolf. It works.

Inktober Day Three
Vampire Poison, harvesting for cash! Found an index card on my desk and doodled out this bit for the Inktober/Drawlloween mashup. I had simply given up on art for the night as I had a nasty headache, but this was apparently the minimal effort I was willing to go to.

Lunch Hour Painting
This bit was inspired by my supreme tiredness and desire to go home and go back to bed. While doing my fast, minimal research, I learned that bears don’t actually hibernate, as in they don’t sleep through the winter. They go into torpor, sleep longer and have much less activity. That is what I feel like sometimes.

Inktober Day Four
This one was surprisingly fun. I wasn’t that inspired by mothman as a prompt, until I did some research. I was familiar with the movies from the book, but not the IRL urban myth that spawned the book. I learned about the sightings, the sandhill crane supposition, the Silver Bridge collapse (very interesting, from an engineering standpoint – even though my engineering is quite different than a bridge, the philosophy and lessons learned apply the same) and the statue! After learning the best explanation of the mothman was a wayward sandhill crane, I searched for moth that had similar wings and coloring. The silk moth, tragic existence though it is now, caught my eye and became my mothman inspiration. Those antenna! Thus, this painting is my “What really happened to the Mothman” proposal – trapped in the wreckage of the Silver Bridge collapse, drowned and never discovered. Got him underwater!

Okay, that was a good week for paintings.

Sep 252017

Amazingly, six paintings from last week. Sorta. Two of them I was able to fit in because I found and used old sketches, and one wasn’t a lunch time painting, but a Friday-night-on-the-couch drawing, but I’m putting it with these guys.

Lunch hour painting.
… than to confuse me with someone who builds a dam.
A couple internet otter-memes inspired this one. Otters are pretty fucking cute. Had time for this only because I’d sketched it a bit last week, but hadn’t the time to paint it then.

Lunch hour painting.
I’m sure you can guess that this was done immediately after a work meeting.

Lunch hour painting.
A few weeks ago, I did a rough sketch of some witches, but ended up having to work for lunch. I flipped through the current sketchbook (which is getting towards the end) and found it and used it. Autumn! Halloween! Excellent! I imagine them waiting for their stew to be ready to eat on this crisp, dark evening.

Lunch hour painting.
As I put on my silky, traditional pyjamas one night last week and laid there in bed, getting sleepy, I had a dream-snippet of a snowy owl, looking tired, in a pyjama top. This mostly looks like him.

Lunch hour painting.
The very next night, another dream snippet, this one of a Tyrannosaurus Rex in a party hat. It was so funny, I had to paint it and I gave her a task – picking out party cupcakes.

Friday night sketch.
On Friday night I had an image in my head of … a certain thing, a guy in a comic, ultra-color style, smoking and … this is not it. This is only about 25% it. But, seeing this wrong drawing reminds me of the right one in my head, so it will serve until I have a chance to actually do it right. More Hellboy, less trendy boy.

Wow, lots of quick paintings last week! I need to remember that even quick, partial sketches that I don’t have time to refine and line will help me out later. Every small step helps. As well, sometimes I get uncomfortable that these are so loose, sloppy, and messy. I have to tell myself, again and again, that I’m doing the whole process in less than an hour. The idea, fast research, sketching, getting out supplies, sketch and linework, paint, dry, refine lines, photo, edit, and post. That is a lot of actions for a single hour. Plus, who gives a shit (besides that naggy voice in my head) if they’re messy. Fuck it. I have a creative hour for myself in the midst of a corporate workday and it makes me happy and more able to cope with shit. This is good.

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