Thursday, July 05, 2018

Art Projects

Another Fourth of July come and gone.  This one was not one for the books.  We did absolutely nothing, probably because it was on a Wednesday.  Earlier in the week I picked up my art from Viridian Coffee. I sold several paintings, so I'm in the money.  Toby has been giving me a hard/funny time about staying on budget.  We are practicing for when he gets laid off from Halliburton.  So, when I purchase something - like a pedicure or something he thinks frivolous, he asks if that is coming out of the art budget.  This little bit of profit made (I snort at the word profit) from art will cover a few things, but mostly it will give me an excuse to buy more art supplies. That is why I snort at the word profit.  I spend way more on art supplies than I make.

My friend Jo is heading to NM soon to get out of the Texas heat.  She signed up for the Wild Rivers Paint out in Questa and Red River and sent me the link. After much thinking and deliberating, I decided to do the paint out too.  Then I talked Jesse into joining us.  So it is my next art project - getting ready for some plein air painting in the mountains.  I'm pretty stoked.  Seeing my NM buddies is always fun.  Painting in the mountains is a plus. Getting out of the heat is priceless.

One of other art projects is to get a website.  I've been asking around and looking at cheap and easy websites. I'm all about cheap and easy - fast is good too. If you are what you eat...

And still another art thang is World Watercolor Month.  So far I've been doing a watercolor a day. Of course we are only on July 5th.  It is good practice for me to paint everyday. Since I am the great procrastinator, it is good for me to start in the mornings. That way I am not painting late at night before bedtime. I did that one day already.  It is not good when you mess up and have no time to start over.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Another Father's Day Down

It was a good Father's Day weekend.  Jesse went off to Lake Texoma with friends. Bo and the grandkids came over for lunch on Sunday.  Mr T is now old enough and big enough to sit in a booster chair in the car rather than a car seat.  So, he got to ride home from church with us. He was thrilled. It's the little things sometimes.  JT was not thrilled and thought he was big enough to ride with us too. Life's disappointments. Anyway, once home, we had the big lunch and then lots of time playing on the farm. 
Everyone was worn out by 4 PM. When we got them gone, Toby and I took a big nap. Jesse showed up about 5 PM and we visited and then went out to the barn to throw some pots.  Jesse did a demo for us. She used a zip tie to hold her hair back.  She didn't realize how silly she looked until I took her picture.  She spent the night with us before heading back to her home.

Monday morning I finished giving the ITBS test to GBN2.  Last week I gave the test to several kids, but GBN2 was not feeling well on the second day of testing and stayed home. Yep that meant another 3 hours of testing and a new plan for where and when. This time we met at the public library and I was able to steal some Wi-Fi while she took the test. GBN2 was able to browse the movies in between tests. The three hours turned into four, since we went long and had to stop to have lunch.  All in all, it good time spent with GBN2.  

I picked up a new kitten. He is yellow and quite the tough guy.  I think I will name him Rubio or Rascal. Now I need to get the GGs out here to rough him up. He seems to be a good cat so far.  Robin Egg will love him.

This next weekend is the CTAC Art Walk.  I'm working like a fiend trying to get stuff together to have a booth. Most of my art is at Viridian Coffee.  Although, I have plenty hanging around the house and under the bed. Getting it all ready to show is another story.  I'm also trying to get pottery done as well as some printed cards and some small matted watercolors ready - things that might actually sell. It will be hotter than the dickens on Saturday sitting out in the park all day.  Sigh, the things we do to promote art!

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Display and Death

At the end of May, I met with the Jamie, the lady who coordinates the art for Viridian Coffee, and we put my art up on display for the month of June.  I think Jamie does a great job.  She has had lots of really good artists on display at the coffee shop.  Since she wants to keep it fairly local, I suggested that rather than just having one artist a month, she should have several artists and have them change out their art work quarterly.  She thought that sounded like too much work to have to deal with several artists at a time. Ha! I guess we artists are difficult.

The good news is that I have sold four paintings! Three of them are small and not very expensive, but hey! I'm in the money! When I asked Jamie when she wanted to do my meet-and-greet the artist, she said that she didn't do those anymore. People didn't come, she said. Okay, I was a bit disappointed. So, I took a photo of my paintings on the wall at Viridian and posted it on FB and Instagram. I got lots of nice words and likes.  One of my friends bought one of my paintings from seeing my photo on FB. Then another friend called and had made a time for me and lots of my friends to meet and have coffee  and view my art work.  It doesn't matter if I sell any paintings to my friends, but it is really nice that they want to gather and see my art.

On a sad note, one of my best friends died of cancer this past week. I can't tell you how sad I am and how I hurt for her family. My friend was an amazing person and lived a good life. There is comfort in knowing that she loved God and served others. Then a few days later another friend died. He was the father of one of my young friends and Jesse's good friend.  I didn't know him as well as I did Carol, but he was a sweet, caring man with a great family. I hurt for his family. Both of these people died way too young and have left daughters who will finish growing up without one parent.

Yesterday would have been my father's 90th birthday. I miss him so much.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Framing and Ceramics and Summer

It has been awhile since I have posted. Sorry about that. It seems that my only excuse is the lack of Wi-Fi.  Since my ceramic class ended and I have not been staying at Jesse's and stealing her Wi-Fi, it has just not been good to use my data for blogging.  Yeah right! It is not a good excuse, but for some reason, it bothers me enough not to blog.

Summer is here and the temps are heating up.  I'm afraid it is going to be a hot summer after such a nice spring.  Toby and I are getting into the hang of the summer.  With the longer days, we have more time to get things done around the Lazy B.  Unfortunately, we don't have the stamina that we used to have.  We have also been practicing our retirement. Since Toby is soon to be laid off, we are budgeting our spending, looking at different things to keep us busy and maybe make money, and we are just seeing how all this time together will do us - ha! Over the Memorial Weekend, we went out to the barn each morning around 7AM and played with the pottery stuff.  Then we went back out in the evenings to work on things - sometimes ceramics, sometimes framing.  Then there is the gardening.  Someone asked me what time I normally go out to the barn to throw pots. I answered 7-9. That works for both AM and PM.  It is just too hot any other time.

Tomorrow I am supposed to take a bunch of my paintings down to Viridian Coffee to hang on the wall for the month of June. I have been matting and framing paintings to get ready.  Also, there is the CTAC Art Walk later in June. If I do this event, I will need to have pictures matted and framed.  It was so hot last time I did this event, that it makes it difficult to want to do it again.  Plus, people don't buy much at things like that - not art anyways.  So it cost me more to frame my paintings and put up my tent and money for a space than I make.  Then there is the lure of the mountains.  My sister and Jesse and I have been discussing a quick trip to RR on that same weekend.  

Between getting my 2D art ready to hang and doing ceramics, I have been pretty busy with my art.  Here is the latest batch of ceramics
I have been experimenting with different glazes. Still, I have not found that perfect glaze.  It is like a crap shoot (is that the right words). You never know how the glaze will look. It could be too thin or too thick Or it could just be ugly.  Now and then it works well. Like that plate in the foreground - I really like the left side which has two glazes on it, but the right side is just okay.  Last night I made a bunch of little slabs of clay to fire and then put all sorts of glazes on them to make kind of a key to use - to show what each glaze will do. Even then, it might not work out the way you want it.

Jesse quit her teaching job.  She is a free woman.  She has a few months with a paycheck before she has to make a living.  She is not too worried about it.  It is good to be young and single and free.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Pain in the Park

It was another busy weekend. I sent Toby off to visit his mom by himself on Saturday, while I went to the Paint in the Park that was sponsored by the CTAC.  It was a fun event and a good exercise in plein air painting. The turnout was not so great, although it was advertised greatly.  I think it is a busy time with graduation and weddings and such.  In Oklahoma if the weather is nice, people are out working in their yards and gardens and doing things that need to be done.  Soon the weather will be too hot to do anything.  Too hot, too cold, too windy, too rainy, too dry, etc. any excuse to not do what needs doing!

The Paint in the Park was a contest – two hours to paint something in the park and to be judged by one person with prize money to be handed out. 
Here is my painting.  Now that I have my painting home and have had time to look it, I can see things that need to be worked on.  My painting was the only finished painting – most paintings were not nearly as finished as mine – I am speedy if nothing else. In fact, the painting that won 1st place had a long way to go to being finished and was very vague in areas, although it did have potential.  The 3rd place painting was better than the 1st place – so goes it with judging.  You never know what influences the judge or what the judge will like and dislike.  It is probably best if the judge shows up just in time to judge. In this case, the judge was there at the beginning and walked around visiting and meeting the artist and chatting it up.  Now the judge knows whose painting is whose. So much for not being influenced.  Anyway, here are the paintings that won – from left to right – honorable mention, 3rd, 2nd, 1st place.  You can be the judge now.

After the Paint in the Park, I made a trip to WalMart and then home to start preparing for Bo and family to come over after church on Sunday for a big birthday bash.  We celebrated GBN4 who turned 3 years old a couple of weeks ago along with his mom whose birthday was last week.  Toby cooked a big brisket.  We had cole slaw, potato salad, beans, pico de gallo, quacamole, and a pound cake.  Toby and I spent most of the afternoon and evening preparing food and the house for the get-together.  On Sunday the kids showed up like small whirlwinds.  They devoured the food in record time, and then went out to play in the $10 pool I had bought. They also brought their water guns. It was wild times at the Lazy B!

The kids all left by 5 PM – they were worn out and fussy.  Toby and I were worn out too. We took naps. That is one of the best things about being a grandparent – sending kids home with their parents and being able to rest up after the storm.      

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Everythings Going My Way

As the days get longer and the weather grows warmer it seems that life gets busier. Last week the little girl’s art class canceled due to everyone being too busy to come. The week before it was the big girl’s class that canceled. I enjoy my time with my girl’s art classes, but they take a lot of thinking, planning, creating, and maybe I get tired of thinking about art for other people. Summer break is good. Less time for others may mean more time for myself.

The old ladies have been slacking off too, except for Robin Egg. Not that I mind. I love my one on one time with Robin Egg – she is an easy keeper.  I’ve also had more time for my art.  Right now, I’m feeling pretty good about my art. I’ve been throwing pots in the mornings and doing some painting in the afternoons.  I’ve also been reading The Outlander series, which I love and could consume me, but hasn’t.  Okie t-shirts that said, “Everything’s going my way.” Of course, it had swirling wind images – which has been the way of things this spring.  For the last few days, the wind has died down a bit, but still whipping everything in sight.

My ceramic class finished up on Monday.  Although I would like to continue taking the class during the summer, I’m not sure that is what I need to do at this point.  I’ve really enjoyed my Mondays in WF with Jesse and the class.  It has been both structured and unstructured time for me – Vital needs.  Could that be the explanation for my well-being? Maybe. Partly.  My spiritual needs are being met as well as my people time needs. Creativity is another vital need. So I guess those things are important now that I lay them out and look them over. 

With the good weather comes outdoor activities.  The Chisholm Trail Arts Council is having a Paint-out in the Park on the 19th.  I will participate as well as help with that.  This weekend there is the Arts for All in Lawton, which is a big art thang in the park. I love going to things like that.  In June, the CTAC will have an Art Walk similar to the Arts for All, but on a much smaller scale. I did this art show a few years ago – it was dang hot! I will probably do it again – even in the heat.  Also, I have been asked to show my art at Viridian Coffee the month of June.  Lots to get ready for.

And then there is the usual yard stuff that happens when the weather is good.  We have already mowed several times. Toby is doing a smaller garden this year or at least it is smaller so far. He could get carried away with it later. I need to work on my flowerbeds, but I am procrastinating. I still have last year’s dead flowers out there. Yard work is not my thang – obviously.

Life is good. Art is going well. I sold a painting last night. Weather is nice. Who can complain?