Meditation – 23 July 2021 – I Worried

I Worried
by Mary Oliver

I worried a lot. Will the garden grow, will the rivers
flow in the right direction, will the earth turn
as it was taught, and if not how shall
I correct it?

Was I right, was I wrong, will I be forgiven,
can I do better?

Will I ever be able to sing, even the sparrows
can do it and I am, well,
hopeless.

Is my eyesight fading or am I just imagining it,
am I going to get rheumatism,
lockjaw, dementia?

Finally, I saw that worrying had come to nothing.
And gave it up. And took my old body
and went out into the morning,
and sang.

Meditation – 21 June 2021

i thank You God for most this amazing
day:for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky;and for everything
wich is natural which is infinite which is yes

(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun’s birthday;this is the birth
day of life and love and wings:and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)

how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any-lifted from the no
of all nothing-human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?

(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)

– e. e. cummings

Dippity-Doodles

Earlier this year I swore I wouldn’t sign up for any classes this year. Instead, I said to myself, I’ll work through some previous classes that I haven’t finished and also revisit some classes that I found particularly useful.

That lasted two whole months when I caved and signed up for Sktchy’s 30 Gouache Portraits in 30 Days. Confession time… I completed exactly ZERO portraits. That just means I can add that course to my burgeoning list of uncompleted art classes.

I continued to work on my other art projects including my tenth Fake Journal for International Fake Journal Month in April, re-scanning most of my fake journal pages, and creating slideshows for each one. (By the way, if you haven’t had a chance to see my fake journals please visit my dedicated Fake Journal blog, Skylark Karma, skylarkkarma.wordpress.com. All the videos will be posted by Wednesday, June 23rd and the final wrap-up of my entire Fake Journal experience is scheduled to post on Friday, June 25th).

Anyway… did I learn my lesson about signing up for classes? No, not really.

I tried to ignore the emails from Sketchbook Skool but the lure of a half-day workshop on creating art and calligraphic text with a dip pen was just too good to pass up. Danny Gregory, one of the founders of Sketchbook Skool, was sharing his tips and tricks.

I already had the dip pens, assorted nibs and a few bottles of India ink… how could I pass it up!

We first practiced our strokes and drew a couple of drawings while Danny filled us in on the pros and cons of working with dip pens and showing how he creates his freeform calligraphy alphabet. I took notes and worked along with the webinar.

I inked this quote of Paul Klee’s along with Danny, copying his alphabet stroke for stroke and line for line. When I opened my book the next day, the large open space to the left just begged for an illustration. Out came the dip pen, G nib, and India ink but this time I was much more confident of my line.

Thanks Danny Gregory and Sketchbook Skool!

Sketchbook Wrap Protection

On January 3, 2020 I posted about my participation in Roz Stendahl’s group testing of the Clairefontaine Watercolor Sketchbook. In addition to Roz there were five additional artists who tested the book, each of us completing a single signature which Roz returned to us when her review was complete and published.

As a single signature it was vulnerable to creasing without the protection of its companion signatures and hard cover. The best way to offer additional protection would be to either make a slipcase or a wrap.

I would have preferred to make a slipcase but since the signature was so thin I realized it would be difficult to measure, cut and glue a slipcase that slim; the wrap was the better alternative.

I first painted a sheet of 300 gsm / 140 lb. watercolor paper with dilute acrylic paint and cut it to allow the flaps to overlap and cover the signature. I rounded the corners and made two tabs with corresponding slots for the closure.

The wrap has nearly no spine thickness to accommodate labeling so I put all the necessary information on the front of the wrap.

It’s now off my work desk, well-enough protected to be filed away as finished, tucked away with my other previously completed sketchbooks in one of my “remote” storage boxes and I’m ready for the next project.

Earth Day 2021

This was created in Laure Ferlita’s online Earth Day Heart ZOOM class which I took last week. Laure kindly provided us with the design and lettering along with detailed instructions so we could all be prepared to just jump in and paint along with her during our hour long class.

Although this class is no longer available, Laure has other upcoming ZOOM classes which might entice you. She also has many tempting on-demand courses ranging from the short project driven class to multi-week deeper dives.

Laure Ferlita
Painted Thoughts Blog
https://www.imaginarytrips.com
https://theimaginaryrealm.com

Thanks Laure! You’re so right… there is no plan(et) B.

It’s April 2021

and that means it’s Fake Journal time again!

Want to see what I’m doing this year? I’m posting on Skylark Karma, my dedicated fake journal blog containing all my fake journals from 2012 to the present.

This year my character’s using ink and watercolor in an A4 sketchbook not meant for wet media. Does she care? Not a bit. Join me as we see what piques her interest this month.

Here’s more information on what she’s going to use.

It’s going to be a great month!

Chickadee-dee-dee

Chickadee


-6 degrees
Chickadee

One part heart
Three parts feather

How big is the spark
That beats in you

And doing so
Warms us both?

— Claudia Kern

You can find this poem and others along with some of Claudia Kern’s art at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Upper Valley website.

Also… tomorrow, 20 March 2021, at 5:37AM (0937 UTC) marks the Vernal Equinox.
Happy Spring!!!