Commitment takes time. And well, just commitment. It’s hard to show up for even just my second “making marks” session. And it’s hard to let go of expectations…. of where this will go, what I’ll make today, how much I’m satisfied, how “good” I think I have or have not done. But what I have done is to get it done. At least now for a second time. I tried closing my eyes. Drawing from imagination. Drawing while not looking at my hand. Making five minute drawings from photographs. All in an effort to let go and just allow the marks to emerge. And I tried a different material and medium. A china marker on Max’s newsprint pad which we have set up on an easel in our living room.
Archive for January, 2011
I bought a new book (at Anthropologie of all places) called the Confident Creative by Cat Bennett. Part “how-to” / part philosophy I hope to use this book to guide me into what has been a long-time dream of mine…. to draw.
Cat breaks the book into three sections: Making Marks, Drawing from Life, Drawing from Imagination. Like most new endeavors, the book recommends doing a little bit every day. And that’s the key. Doing it every day. Like brushing your teeth. Just showing up and making the commitment of time. There are a lot of things I wish I could just dedicate 15 minutes a to, but somehow I barely manage to put in the time for teeth brushing. So if I could choose just one other thing to do every day besides brushing my teeth, this would be it.
And so I’ve started, as the book does, with Making Marks. And I hope to dedicate 30 days to it.
Cat says, “When we were toddlers, we scribbled with crayons on paper or even on the walls. Once we had a crayon in hand we had to make marks! Kids seem to understand instinctively how exciting it is simply to see what emerges when we show up to draw without any plan. They’re undaunted, free from judgment, and filled with positive expectation.”
And so here are three mark making samples. The third one is by my toddler Max who I end up spending a lot of time making marks with. I bet you can see who has the most energy and excitement. Here’s hoping I match his enthusiasm soon.
Our good friend tio Chris Pesenti makes random appearances on our doorstep, hangs out for a while, plays some ukulele, catches up, and then keeps on keeping on with his very green and very bohemian lifestyle. Most recently, he has formed the group RED on the Baja Penninsula. The group focuses on eco-tourism and on training residents of the Baja to form their own eco-tourism tours so that they may build an economically and financially sustainable lifestyle for themselves. He is an example of one my many fine friends who follows their heart.
As for my family, we are embarking on the adventure of finding a job. One promising position may be available at the Community Hospital of the Monterey Penninsula. We made a trek up there this weekend for reconnaissance and good times in general. One of the follow-your-heart-places we found up there is Monterey’s Happy Girl Kitchen, a superb café and source for food preservation. The owners have dedicated themselves to pickling, canning, and preserving the bountiful organic harvests of the surrounding areas. We love the kitchen concept and the kitchen itself. We hope they are part of our future.
This winter I got crafty and creative with the help of many a folk. A seed-pod garland was inspired by Design Sponge. A chocolate-pear tart was inspired by Confessions of a Tart. Sewn circle decorations were inspired by Make Good in San Diego. And stockings were engineered by Anna Watson Sindelar and sewn by me on her borrowed sewing machine. Thanks Anna! Constant inspiration was provided by Maximillian Xavier and the cloudy weather we’ve had here in San Diego. Finally, my husband got me a new ukulele for the holidays as Max constantly “tuned” my yellow one. Now Max and I can play together. His favorite tune by far has been Gus and Fin’s cover of The Ramones’ “Suzy is a Headbanger.”
I recently did the invitation for my dear friend Anna’s upcoming wedding. She gave me some art direction based on other invitations she liked and told me to listen to Tom Wait’s song Fish and Bird. Her dress for the wedding is black and pink. Given that she is doing the whole wedding on a micro-budget, we had the invitations printed as postcards at gotprint.com. I will be providing other creative input into the wedding decor which I will be sure to share. We have also decided upon a chocolate cupcake recipe, and one that everyone should try: Chocolate Guinness Cupcakes with Chocolate Whiskey Ganache and Bailey’s Buttercream frosting. Sure to get things started even before the honeymoon.