Sunday, February 6, 2011

It's February, it's snowy and when did I get here?

I see that it has been over a month since my last blog entry. Where does the time go?

Here's what I have been up to since last time:

I purposely took the month of December off from spending time in the studio. Unfortunately it melded into a January of no art making. I did pick up a few things for the studio during that time, so it hasn't totally been "out of sight..."you know the rest. I bought a desk lamp with a base that can hold brushes, scissors, and other tools, as well as a set of attachments for the Dremmel tool. I am pretty well outfitted for now. I recently returned to the studio to work on a Valentine for Mary. I am not much of a store bought card kind of guy, so I usually try to make her something. When it is completed, I will post a picture of it here. After I finish with that, I have a couple of softballs to work on, some plant stake "heads," and some other ideas I've had brewing.

Most of my creative time lately has been spent reading about writing, writing and writing some more. About two weeks ago, some of us in my writing group started the 100x100 challenge. We have committed to writing at least 100 words a day for 100 days. If you miss a day, you start over at day 1. I am determined not to have to start over, so I have stayed on track. Got a little discouraged for a stretch because I felt like I was writing 100 crappy words, but I am feeling like I have rebounded lately. It has been a good exercise, because it succeeds in making writing a part of my life on a daily basis, not just once in a while. To help along those lines, I have started carrying a small notebook with me at all times so that when inspirations strikes, I can jot down whatever it is that I have thought. Forgot to take the notebook with me yesterday when I went to the grocery store, so I found myself jotting some things down on the back of my list while I waited at the checkout. Don't know if I will every use the things in the notebook, but again, it keeps my writing in the foreground throughout the day. Feels good to be writing so much.

In addition to reading about writing, I have been reading for pleasure (and research of sorts) as well. I got the graphic novel bug lately, and after a trip to the comic book store a few weekends ago, I have been working my way through a couple of series. I read "The Umbrella Academy," "The Stuff of Legend" and Joe Hill's "Locke and Key." Of these I most enjoy "Locke and Key."

Clever storylines, and great graphic work by Gabriel Rodriguez. Though it is an entirely different way to read, I will continue with the graphic novel and comic book reading (for now anyway). It makes me think even more visually, which I think is a good thing given that I am an artist and a writer.

Through this reading, I have rediscovered the author Joe Hill. I read his book "Heart Shaped Box" a few years back and it has stuck with me. His ideas are unique and he is a master and creating mood, and truly believable characters. I am currently reading his newest novel, "Horns" which, if described here, might sound silly, but at a quarter of the way in, I am enjoying. Again it is unique, dark, and surprisingly humorous.

I have to admit to some writer's envy when it comes to Joe Hill. He writes like I hope to write eventually. Being as good as he is might have something to do with his genes (he's the son of Stephen King), though I think it is more than that. I will try to glean as much as I can from reading him for now in the hopes that some of his magic might rub off on me.

Guess that catches us up a little for now. Will try to get back here soon with more news on art and writing. Till then, let's hope for an early spring. It's getting me down. (Though creatively that might be a good thing.)


  1. Grr, forgot to sign in first. I envy your ambition with your various artistic outlets. It's good to hear of your current projcets. How's the lady bug comming? I have had enough winter and look forward to changing Fanny's hat and environment to spring. However, the snow today is gorgeous and I hope to take a walk with my camera later on and capture some of the frosted landscape. Keep up the good work!!!

  2. Thanks for the kind words. It is good to hear, and I have to remind myself more often that I am doing something even when it feels like I'm not doing enough.

    I should have the ladybug done in a week or so. Still trying to figure out how to do the head. Haven't done a softball version yet, so it might take some experimentation. I know what you mean about needing a little spring. I am inspired to get to another couple of spring themed balls as well. (a rabbit and a robin)

    Saw your pics on Facebook. Very nice. You are becoming a pro at posting your photos!

  3. Hi, Yalco!
    I'd say something about the spring-themed balls, but I won't. :)
    So cool that you're keeping up with the 100 words a day! Before you know it, writing will be such a routine that you won't even think about it before you find yourself putting words to paper. I've gotten to where I can leave off in the middle of a sentence(!!) and pick right back up when I return to it, even if it's days later.

  4. So good to hear from you Joyous! Thought you might have slipped into some kind of void.

    Though there are days when it is a challenge to get myself motivated, I like writing everyday. I like it even better when that is how I begin my day. I find myself thinking about writing ALL the time. I hold you up as one of my inspirations! (and Joe Hill apparently)