No Excuses

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So I won an internet drawing and got all this cool stuff! Plus the online class! It’s all from Gina Rossi Armfield’s No Excuses Art Journaling. And I love it!

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Gina has developed a fun, easy way to get a little something on the page every day. She uses a planner and watercolors and has tons of fun ideas and prompts to keep you creating.

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I couldn’t really find a planner I liked in late February so I went with my favorite art journaling book, a 6″ by 9″ Bee Paper Super Deluxe sketchbook that I’m slowly turning into a planner.

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I’m having lots of fun so far using it to capture daily doodles and quotes I want to remember, as well as brief notes about my days.

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Here’s my book and the little Koi watercolor travel set I bought to go with it. I’m not using the watercolors in a very watercolory way yet, but having portable paint is awesome!

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Just Doodling Around

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My baby cats

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I took the cats out in the back yard today after work. They love to go out and explore and I usually have to haul them back in. But today, shortly after we went out, a man a few houses down began yelling at his dog. Loud, long, shaming yelling. And my big fearless bruiser Sark went running for the back door. He tore into the house and stayed there. I don’t think I’ve ever seen him run from anything.

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A part of me has always believed Bobby and Sark spent their first few months with a loving woman and an angry man. I usually get upset when I think of them being dropped off out by my parents’ place, abandoned and alone. But today I am thankful. Thankful that they found their way to my family and my safe loving home where the only yelling is about the football.

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Notes on Springing Forward

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1. The increasing daylight has brought a corresponding increase in the feline energy level of my household. The sibling rivalry is getting a little ridiculous.

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2. The suddenly amazing amount of light in the evening is very seductive. I get very busy running or drawing or making dinner or whatever and think “I have plenty of time…it’s still light out!” And then I look up and it’s bedtime.

3. The other end of the day brings its own issues. When the cats wake me up at 5:00 in the winter I can go back to sleep because it’s only 5:00. Now when they wake me up at 5:00 it’s actually 6:00 and I have to think about getting up. It’s not pretty.

4. The time change seems to get more challenging every year. It makes me wonder if I’m getting crotchety.

P.S. the twinkly lights on the mantle have been on since December. I’m not getting tired of them.

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More practice (with a dose of failure)

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I’ve started a drawing practice this year. Inspired by the 20 Ways to Draw a Cat book, I call these my daily cat drawings even though they obviously aren’t all cats. The plan is to do a quick little drawing every day when I first get up. Also obvious is the fact that I don’t actually do this every day. But it’s ok because it’s practice and I’ve learned this year that one of the important things about practicing is to keep doing it, rather than giving up at the first sign of failure.

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I had these colored papers left over from a project I did a year or so ago. I cut them up and keep them handy, along with a Micron 03 pen to make it easy to do a quick drawing in the morning. Sometimes my drawings are cute. Other times they suck. And some times I don’t fit one in. That’s how it goes with practice.

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Speaking of practicing and failing, here I am after a particularly sucky run the other day. Between crappy weather and a nasty sinus infection, it had been a couple of weeks since my last run. The day started out sunny and beautiful and I was really excited to run at lunch. And then I got out there and the wind was blowing 40 miles an hour and my lungs felt awful and I got a stitch in my side and I had to stop to walk short of my goal. I’m smiling in this picture because the suckiness of my run is over, but also because I’d just decided I had been due for a sucky run and I wasn’t going to let it stop me. That’s how it goes with practice.

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Small blessings

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I had to stand outside on the front steps of my office for a few minutes today. The weather here is cold and blustery. But I could feel the warmth of the sun.

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Reminders

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I finished up these little reminders to myself this week. These are the things I want to focus on right now. I’ll hang them up somewhere I’ll see them all the time.

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I really didn’t like these backgrounds when I painted them last week. Today I love them. Sometimes things need to marinate. And our perspective is always adjusting.

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