Tuesday, April 17, 2018

PLAY - Life Book 2018

I am truly enjoying this course!  Trying to keep up with the lessons is keeping me engaged in art so much more often than I might be on my own.  And let me tell you... art with no purpose other than the sheer enjoyment of the process... it's like soft serve ice cream on a hot summer day ... cool and sweet and oh so enjoyable!

 This is my garden fairy (actually our Lesson from the first week of class!)

She's still a work in progress - I still need to do another layer on the background and meaningful symbols on the shirt and a bit more work on the face.  She's not meant to be realistic in the sense of human proportions.

But she's come a long way from this:

And I've really been taking my time on this one because, somehow, she just seems too important to rush.  After all, she's supposed to be tending my dreams...
And here's my finished project from Week 12.  The lesson, called "Beauty in the Chaos" had us make a color-filled totally abstract background and then "find" the images hidden in what we had created.  I saw the girl planting flowers right away.  It took me days of staring at the painting to "see" the heart, the robin, and the path leading to the tent? (some kind of dwelling - I wasn't clear what).  In finishing the painting, I purposefully left the grass and sky very transparent so you can still see a lot of the "chaos" underneath.  I thought I had snapped a picture when it was just background, but apparently that was one of those things I did in my head and not in reality. 😕

The recent work on these two projects was accomplished during a two day retreat at the Jersey Shore.  I need more play dates like that!

Sunday, April 15, 2018

My March wrap up ... in mid-April

We finished off March with a total of 4 Nor'easter storms and the threat of a 5th.  The cold weather continued into April in what seemed to be a never-ending Winter.  But then on Friday/Saturday we had a preview of Summer with temps jumping into the 80's.  Folks were out in short sleeves, yard work was being done, it was truly a celebration of the coming Spring.  It seemed like overnight the yellow forsythia leaves popped out and trees began showing buds.  A promise fulfilled - Spring always comes. 

Then today happened. It's 40 degrees right now.  Yes, it dropped over 40 degrees from this time yesterday.  Last night the wind howled and carried on. Today is grey and drizzly and dreary.  The last two days were just a tease.  This entire week is slated to be in the 40's and low 50's. Which is just as well - I have to be in the office 3 days this week.  So I won't feel like I'm missing anything.

Besides the never-ending-winter-storms, March was an interesting Month.  In "FIT" class, we tracked our mood throughout the month.  For me, the blue represents my "default" state - calm, content, even-steven, just being.  The yellow were particularly productive days and the green is when I was feeling most cheerful.  Thankfully March only gave me moments of the unfocused, tired, stressed and frustrated colors.  I was most surprised at the complete lack of angry/annoyed... which maybe means I'm growing up???

 For One Little Word, we were supposed to track one habit all month.  Of course, I always see it as "go big or go home" so I decided it was time to resurrect my habit tracker from 2015 (I think).  I actually enjoyed keeping this up to date and even though I'm not excelling at meeting every goal (like art everyday), there is a satisfaction in seeing all the color filling this sheet and in seeing in visual form that I had a decent month all things considered!
 I'm also keeping a monthly FIT calendar to track my steps and workouts.  The supplies to keep this one up to date are portable ... which means I can do it even when I'm traveling!
Gratitude journal is up to date!

Which reminds me... as of March 31st we gave up our shop in Phillipsburg NJ (lasted 1 year 3 mos) and are back to one local shop for our antiques business.  Sales have been so flat lately that I'm not even sure that one will last through the year for us.  But I've gained back over 3 hours per week of my life and I couldn't be happier about that!

What are you grateful for today?