What Is It Good for?

December 15, 2014

So this was my theme song today:

Although it took me all day to get there. To the ironing of War, that is…which may now have a title related to that song, but I’m not positive, so I’m not committing yet. You know, cuz I’m the not-committing type. Ha! Yeah. I know. Those who know me know that’s bullshit.

So I had a hard week getting to work on this quilt, and there were two soccer games yesterday that ate up many hours, but I got a ton of grading done (yay!) and I managed to pull the birds out and be working on them as well, because there’s nothing like freezing to death on narrow cold metal bleacher benches and doing bullion knots with ice-cold hands.

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Because that’s how I roll. Seriously, you should try it. And yes, it absolutely is taking me more than two years to finish these fucking birds, but I’m OK with that, because it’s nice to sew on them at soccer games. I do enjoy it. It’s so easy sewing through wool. I have a bunch done already…

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OK, they all need eyeballs, but otherwise they’re done…

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But there’s probably another 15 that aren’t done. Maybe this season they’ll get there? Who knows. I’m not that bothered. Wait. So I’m only halfway done? Shit. Whatever. There are four soccer games this week. Surely I can get something done in four games, right?

But more importantly, I finally tackled the pile of men again. HOLY CRAP. What was I thinking when I numbered these? I totally should have numbered from the bottom-most piece to the top, but I did the exact opposite…

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Which meant I ironed from the top, then pulled up, and tried to fit shit underneath.

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The whole fucking time. Which is just fucking crazy. Nuts. At some point, I had the whole pile done, although I need a couple of dark pieces in this one…

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I can do that tomorrow…

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Seriously though. Wow. That’s a pile of naked men lying on flames. No socio-political commentary there, eh? Anger issues? Naw. It will look much better with outlining…once I get to the quilting.

I am so far off schedule right now though. I was going to be done with the ironing tonight, wasn’t I? And I’m only 3 1/2 hours in, and only 280 pieces are ironed of 700+. Granted, I think I just did the hardest bit, but hell. I’ve got soccer games and holiday parties and sheesh. Monday night and Wednesday night I think are my only freebies this week. Maybe Friday? Hard to say? Oh shit, the boychild comes home Friday night. Wow. He’s been gone for almost four months. I miss his cranky ass. I wonder what he will think of this one.

Anyway. So this is very much a survival week, a Fuck Me week. A week where teachers pray for videos and certain kids to be absent (you know who you are) and lots of holiday parties and eating and not enough hours at the gym. But I think I can survive it. And I think I can get this sucker ironed down and then stitched down relatively quickly. Hopefully. Because I’m running out of time. Sleep? Fuck sleep. I suck at it anyway. Why spend more time at something at which you suck, right?


I drew tonight. I was at the gym this morning and texting a friend and the main image just popped into my head and would not fucking leave. So I sat down tonight and spent about two hours working with it…

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It is nowhere near done. But it’s growing…

Girlchild had a bunch of friends show up here tonight and one came early and accidentally one of my drawings was on the light table and caught her eye (and probably slammed it to the ground and kicked it to bits), and you could see her stammer in her head for a minute and then recover, because yeah, I guess I’m the weird mom. Whatever. Can you imagine being 17 and trying to parse me? I would have been fascinated, but I think most of them just wonder. Plus I use swear words around them. I figure they have enough good influences. I should be the one that throws them out of the norm and makes them think there might be something else, that there might be creativity and art and crazy shit. There’s a lot of things I’m not good at, but creativity is something I embrace wholeheartedly, even at 2 in the morning when I should be asleep.

I’m excited about the drawing and the quilt. They’re good. I love when what comes out of my head is good. It makes the teeth-grinding better. It makes the late nights better. It makes the inability to sleep better. This is the being of an artist. It’s just all there in my head and I pluck it out and make it and it is good.

What is it good for? You wouldn’t ask if you had it. It’s so fucking obvious.

The 100: Should I Draw or Should I Not?

December 11, 2014

So I’ve been thinking about this donation piece I’m going to do for FFAC The 100 Fundraiser, and I have some drawings that are already done (OK, I have hundreds of drawings that are already done)…and this time of year is apparently going to kick my butt in terms of getting any work done (almost nothing last night…again), so I pulled out one of the medium-sized sketchbooks to see what was there, because why remake the wheel? If I already have something that will work…

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Yeah. That’s got way too many pieces in it. One of the things we’re supposed to try to do is keep it in the $100 range, at least 8×10″, which means looking at a sketchbook that’s 10×12″ is probably a mistake. But this would make a cool smaller quilt.

Then I had some drawings that I had already exploded (OK, that’s not the right word, but I haven’t had enough caffeine yet to come up with the right one…dammit…ENLARGED), but same issue.

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They’re going to be too big or too complicated. Recognize that bird? Yup. It’s the original drawing from whence the purple bird came.

This drawing is really old…never got done. I even numbered all the pieces. It’s been a bit beat up.

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I might have to ship the piece overseas, so I want it to fit flat in a padded envelope, ideally. Shipping can be really expensive. Maybe just the bird and the hand in that one? That might work?

And then I saw Kathy York’s piece, and I wanted to be one of the 100 donors. We’ll see what money looks like in February. Odds are it’s gonna be ugly (college apps). So you should do it because you might get that canoe and that canoe is awesome.

So I went back to considering my options (and being irritated because I haven’t even started yet and the other Kathy is done…not irritated at HER of course…she’s awesome…and I’m just too busy and that sucks at the moment).

So this one is still hanging around (as is Calli)…although very cool and possibly small enough, it’s probably way too complicated.

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The two smallest of the birds came out at about $100 calculated hours. Keep that in mind. That’s like less than 20 pieces (very hard for me to go that simple) and they were 8×10″.

So I’m still thinking about it. Keep it simple, right?

This one is simpler…

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but too big. And those leaves are pretty fancy schmancy. I could go back to its original size? Or I could just pull out the smaller sketchbook and draw with size and pieces in mind…starting over…

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Calli’s no help with this. Sigh. Will keep mulling this over until I have time to deal with it!

Vacation…More Time to Work

November 23, 2014

So. I’m officially on vacation. I traced Wonder Under Friday night for a little while, but I was exhausted and went to bed early, because I had a long hike early Saturday morning. I get up earlier for hikes than I do for school. It’s a little crazy. But it was a good hike (post later) and we went out to eat afterwards, which I almost never do, because you lose the whole day. But I could afford to lose the whole day because I have a whole week of them off. Anyway. It was good. And I came home and tried to function, but the body and brain were old and tired. Eventually, after the second or third cup of tea and some reading of the book club selection that I had to be done with by today (there’s nothing like leaving it until the last minute), I got up and started tracing Wonder Under again…

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The fun part (wait, put “fun” in quotes) about tracing this section is that it’s a pile of bodies that are all overlapping, and although I might have tried to be logical about numbering them in the first place, that logic has now left the building, and I am often staring at the pile, trying to find the next piece in number order. Piece 225 took like 10 minutes to find. I don’t know what I was thinking. So the almost-200 pieces in the pile took forever to trace. But I wasn’t going to give up. I wanted it done, so that when I came back to tracing today, it would be straightforward and relatively easy. Nov 23 14 091 small

The thing is, that pile is gonna kick my ass when I have to pick fabrics out, because overlapping and random behind spaces and I don’t even know what parts go with what body in half of it. Yeah. Way to fuck with yourself, Kathryn. I guess I like a good challenge.

So I’m 4 hours into the tracing and only at piece 287 or so. Like I said, it was a bitch. I have about 5 hours left, I’m guessing, and I’d like to be done today. No really. I would. That might not be realistic though because I still have to go grocery shopping and to book club and to dinner at my parents’ house. Hmn. Are there 5 hours LEFT after all that? So much for vacations, right? That’s why you’re supposed to GO somewhere, so you can relax and stop doing all that other stuff. Then again, I don’t really do anything else right…why start with doing vacations right? It’s a stay-at-home vacation because I can’t afford anything else. I would have loved to have taken the girlchild to NYC, met the boychild there, hung out, got an AirBnB apartment, checked out the city. It would have been cool. It would have been $1500 I don’t have right now. Especially with college apps coming up again.

So we’re here in lovely San Diego, soccer tournament, practices, a couple of hikes, dinner with the close family on Tday. And lots of artmaking. So my plan is to have all the Wonder Under ironed to fabric in a week. Because then school starts back up again and that 3-week stretch notoriously kicks my butt. And then I have vacation again, but only about a week and a half before this next quilt has to be done. So yeah. I need to work hard. Like usual. Like what the fuck is new about that? This is my life. It’s a continuous hard-work endeavor. I’m not always entirely sure what I get out of that. People tell me the art is cool, amazing, etc., but then I just make more of it. I don’t know if there’s a reason for it, except that I’m incredibly unhappy when I don’t make it. And there’s enough of that feeling in my life…I don’t need to make more of it. There must be a better balance though.

I did take time out to finish the book for book club. It must have been cold last night because (1) I was wearing polar fleece in the house (lots of windows behind the light table) and (2) the bitchy old-lady cat was in the living room, curled up tight next to me.

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Which was fine. Notice the pile of dirty clothes on the floor? Girlchild has some cleaning to do. I’m tired of the slob factor. That’s one goal for this vacation…get the mess under control, at least enough to get me through December.

I wanted to show you where I normally write…

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Yup. The computer. The computer desk is a mess. The chair has been scratched all to hell by bitchy cat, who often is sitting on the chair (you can see the top of her head in the picture). Right now, she’s not, but that’s because morning winter sun is over THERE on the table, so she’s curled up over there. Thank god. I can actually sit properly. I’m over 42,000 words on the novel, and I will easily hit 50,000 by Thanksgiving. I’m hoping to keep the momentum going and get to the end, whatever that is, by the end of the year or earlier. I’ve already decided no sequel. So I’m writing it that way. I guess I always knew I would. I do have another book started in my head though. Different story, different characters, different location. Still sci-fi though. Not sure what’s up with that.

Here’s Luana Rubin’s review of the two SAQA exhibits at Houston this year…she mentions my piece.

Someday I’ll meet her in person and tell her how to pronounce my name. Or maybe you could do that for me.

Some Kind of Crazy

November 21, 2014

Some kind of crazy happened yesterday. I mean, there’s the regular crazy of my job, but then I came home right after work and sat down with a cup of tea and finished the drawing (it took 13 minutes to finish it, by the way, but probably 6 hours to decide how to finish it in 13 minutes). My car tire was having inflation issues again, so I knew I needed to get it some air, but I went to the copy place first and enlarged the drawing, then filled the car with air and gas, then went home and started taping the drawing together. I realized it needed more space below as well as above (I knew about above…there were some leaf-fitting issues…nothing major), so I taped more paper above and below. Girlchild came home and left with the dog. I seriously only see her (girlchild) for like 10-minute sessions, and then she’s gone again. Or I’m gone. Or we’re both gone. And I sort of realized that if I was going to get to quilt class on time, I wasn’t going to be able to finish drawing at the house. So I packed up all the stuff to trace Wonder Under, and I even dropped off my library book on the way there, and I got there and drew the bottom, which I didn’t even know was going to happen until it happened. This is how life is when you let the creative brain have free rein (or is that reign? I could argue both at the moment)…it just does stuff and doesn’t tell you about it. Wow. Just like my relationships. Ha!

Anyway. On track, Kathryn. So then I started numbering, and because of the bizarre penis pileup I have going on in the bottom, it took for-freakin-ever to number that section…

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(OK, it’s just a pile of men, not penises) I was trying to be logical about it, but it turns out, you can’t be particularly logical about chaos. I had about 280 pieces numbered when I finished the pile, so I asked the other quilters at my meeting to hazard a guess as to my total pieces. Susan came in at 1500, Jean at 957, Mary at 1267, and Barbara at 850 (mostly because I kept saying it better NOT be over a thousand, but by then, she could see I was up to 400 and something and she was estimating beyond that. So maybe she had insider information by sitting next to me).

So I ended up getting to 749 (oh thank god…I might actually be able to finish it in time)…

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But then when I got home (because it took me two hours to finish drawing and then number the piece, speaking of not being particularly efficient), I realized I hadn’t numbered the bullet thingie on her chest, which surely has a real name. Let me ask The Google. Holy crap! It IS a bandolier. I thought it was, and then I thought NOOO. That’s like something fancier than that, like something you wear when you dance or something. Yeah. Anyway. I numbered that and got to 768. Totally doable (crazy ass bitch. Are you NUTS?).

Meanwhile, I did write once I got back. I really wanted to start tracing Wonder Under, but I’m being really good about writing every day, so I did that first. I’m over 38,000 words. I will finish Thanksgiving Day (with the 50,000…probably not with the book) at this rate, which is kinda cool. It’s nice to know I can do it if I have to. I got stymied by some DNA testing terminology, so I just flagged it for future research. Googling stuff like “What’s that thing called when the DNA gets spread out and makes pretty pictures” is not particularly useful when you’re already tired. And it’s not worth spending hours trying to figure out right now.

Then finally…finally I was allowed to go back to the drawing…

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Which turned out being bigger than I had planned…as usual. But I think it’ll be OK. It’s longer, but not wider, and wide is the issue in a small gallery. It’s 27″ wide by 45″ high, which is smaller than anything I’ve done for a while. Which is good. Because I only have 6 weeks. I think. Don’t think about it.

Those flying hearts showed up again…

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I like them. At the moment. Don’t know why. A metaphor for where I’m at? Who knows. And DNA hand is back.

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I didn’t trace a lot or for super long, because it was getting late, but I’m starting! So I think I’m ahead of where I planned to be. Or maybe I’m right where I planned to be. Hard to say.

Planning To Be Not Sick…

November 20, 2014

So the girlchild is sick. It’s two days until a week-long vacation, and I am surrounded by coughy, sneezy, leaves-her-used-tissues all over the house, which the dog then tries to eat, so I have to touch all of them to either throw them away or get them out of the dog’s mouth. And THEN. Then she drinks out of the milk jug, straight out of it, right in front of me, like she doesn’t even care that she’s bombarding ME with all those germs on levels that I don’t even need to consider. Her response? “Um. Sorry? We live together anyway.” She’s like the worst roommate ever. I come home and she’s already left for soccer, and all the clothes she’s worn are all over the floor, and when I come back from the gym, I find her smelly soccer socks, shoes, and shinguards sitting on the couch where I would like to sit and draw, and it reeks.

Bad roommate. Except she’s my blood. I did give her some grief yesterday when she finally came home, but she’s SIIICKKK. Sigh. I guess my plan for break is to be sick as well (pounding vitamins, washing hands as I speak). I don’t have time to be sick. I have two hikes to go on, 13,000 words to write, a quilt to get significantly started. I can’t be sick.

So there’s the drawing. I came home after delivering my quilt to the photographer and I was exhausted. So I tried to read, but fell asleep on the couch (probably I’m getting sick) and woke up to a cat lying on me. It’s a risk in this house. Happens all the time. I only had like 30 pages of my book left, so I finished it (It was good by the way…the last in Lev Grossman’s Magicians series). Then I started trying to draw, and here’s why I don’t keep track of time on the drawings. When it’s not going well, when I’m having a hard time getting it out of my head or solidifying it in there, I just stare at things…mostly at the paper, but also at the TV (Blacklist, James Spader is truly evil in this show, and yet not), or a cat. Or the white wall, annoyed by the fact that I haven’t finished doing things in here, like hanging art. So I did a lot of that. I have “four hours” into the drawing, but I’d bet that only half of that was actual pen or pencil moving on paper. And if you’re going to count the staring-at-the-paper minutes, you should also count the minutes when I’m thinking about the drawing when I don’t have a sketchbook in my lap, and that’s quite a few more hours. So yeah. Pointless measurement there. No real start and stop. Fluid.

But after I made dinner and girlchild finally showed up to eat (and sneeze and cough and moan and leave used Kleenex everywhere), I went and wrote some more story (she’s kidnapped! It happened early! I said 5 PM and then I kidnapped her early! Don’t ask. My brain does what it pleases.), and when I came back to the couch, the snotty thing had gone to bed (without even saying good night) and I was able to do a significant piece of the drawing. Because before that? I was just staring at the paper for a long time.

It is unfortunately not done. That said, I think it COULD be done with about 20 more minutes. I don’t HAVE 20 minutes before school though. And I was going to go copy it after school. SO. I could take it to school and instead of doing grades during prep, I could finish it. And then copy it after school. But I don’t like taking my sketchbook (the big one) to school. It’s just…it’s got stuff in it that the students would be shocked by, and it’s big and hard to hide, unlike the one in my bag. SO. I could just ditch out of school as soon as the bell rings, come home and finish it, and then go copy it. Probably means I’ll be putting it together at class, but I think I can do that. OR. I could stop writing this and go finish it, except mornings are not good drawing times for me. I don’t know why. My brain is primed for late night. Right now, I’m still trying to wake up. Apparently I can write half asleep but I can’t draw. Two different parts of the brain. The rambling wordy bit can vomit shit up all the time. The drawing part needs more caffeine. And wake time.

But this is where I’m at…

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Like I said, not much left. Trying to keep it simple so I can actually finish it in time. Yes, the DNA hand showed up again. So did the tree. I really like the pile of people, of MEN. Yup. Standing on Da Boyz. And there’s pencil between her legs because I’m not sure about that part, but it’s there to remind me to think about it. So I guess I really need to wait until the end of the day. Yup. Plus I’m going to have to add to the top and sides a bit so I can put more leaves in. But not much.

Another thing I’m doing, which I had heard about back in September or October, is Coursera. If you haven’t heard of it, they are college classes you can take for free (no credit) or for credit (pay!) that are offered on a wide variety of subjects and from a huge number of participants. A friend (Linda!) emailed me about one she thought I would like about how plants use their “senses.” It sounded interesting, so I signed up for this class taught by a professor at Tel Aviv University, and I’m about three weeks behind starting, but since I’m not taking it for credit (unlike some of the kids in there), I don’t care. I also don’t care that I’m not acing the quizzes, because I’m listening to his lectures while I’m writing the book. And when he says something really interesting or confusing, I flip to the tab running the video and I rewatch that section, and sometimes I take notes (right now, my post-it says “auxin” and “Barbara McClintock”), but mostly I’m just listening for stuff that I could use in the book or that might make some things make more sense. I’m still boggled by this article about plants that can “hear” caterpillars eating them and respond chemically. They recorded the sounds and played them near another plant and it responded in kind. This is awesome science, and helped me write the section where the plant talks to the main character. Yeah, my science is a little out there, but I don’t think it’s as out there as I originally thought.

Anyway. It’s interesting enough and I’ve done two weeks of work in two nights (well, I didn’t do it WELL. I got a D on the quiz, but whatevs. I’m not taking it for reals.).

So. Progress on all levels. And two more days of school to survive. If you’ve never been in a middle school the week before an upcoming vacation, even if it’s only a week off that’s coming up, it’s like there’s a full moon. They wig out all over the place and do amazingly stupid things, because they think it’s not going to follow them after break. Which is only a week long. I’m with them, though. I want to be on vacation too. I just don’t want to be SICK on vacation. Grr. More vitamins. More handwashing.

Yes. It DOES Sound Crazy.

November 19, 2014

Well, one thing I’ve got going for me right now is that there is no shortage of projects I’m supposed to be working on. In fact, there are four due within the next 2 1/2 months. Luckily, three of them are tiny, compared to what I normally do, and even the larger one can’t be TOO large. And it’s been in my head for a couple of months, so I actually think I can get it out fairly quickly. I did know that I would have to fit it all on one page. I don’t know if you’ve noticed lately, but it’s been hard for me to fit anything on a single page. Even those drawings that are mostly on one page seem to need something added once I enlarge it…which isn’t a problem. But when I know I need to make what is for me a smaller piece because the show has a lot of people and the gallery isn’t very big, it means I have to THINK about size. I don’t usually think about size.

So before I could even deal with the drawing last night, though, I had to get my hair cut, mostly because I couldn’t get a comb through the ends. I wanted to do it in October, but financially, October was a major issue. Timewise as well, so I finally got there yesterday. It’s silly, because I guess I could have chopped it all off myself, but Rebecca does a much better job (duh. She is trained.). I have learned over the years that there are I things I CAN do (like my own quilt photography), but it’s stupid when others can do it better and I can pay them a reasonable amount to do so. My photographer also…I gladly let him do what he’s good at, so I can do more of the stuff that I’m good at. And it’s remarkably silly how nice a good haircut feels. I don’t get a lot of the good feels.

By the time I finally got home (had to pick up ex-husband because his car is in the shop again), I was tired, but I forced myself to the gym. I wrote the novel on the bike; got about 450 words written in 25 minutes (so that’s 18 words a minute), which means I’ve spent over 55 hours writing this book so far. No wonder I don’t sleep. That’s not 55 hours this month…I started in June, but it is 30 hours so far this month, which is about an hour and 3/4 each day. Wow. Really? Someone check my math. I’m not meditating at the moment by the way. I often write, though, while I’m doing something else. But still, wow. I work full time as a teacher, I exercise, I cook real food, I apparently sleep, and I write almost 2 hours a day. Plus art.

So after all that and eating dinner, I wrote…see above…over 34,000 words and a step closer to the violence. It’s 1:15 PM in the afternoon of the day when all the shit hits the fan. Some shit just hit, but we don’t really know what it means yet, and when I say “we,” yes, I’m including me, because my brain hasn’t written that part yet. It will tonight. Seriously. I rarely know where I’m going with this story until I get there. I’m hoping it all holds together, but I realized last night that I had one character bifurcating in the story (no, she really can’t be in two places at once…it’s sci fi, but not THAT sci fi.), so I’m sure editing will need to tighten up some details.

Then I ironed the new quilt for the photographer and dehaired it and prepped it…

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I have to cover it so it doesn’t get more cat hair, but also because my car has dog hair in it from Calli riding in there, so I usually make a plastic bag covering. Yes, some people buy bags especially for this, but I’m not like that. Plus I spent all my money on my haircut (not really…but teenagers are really expensive). This morning I decided to roll it with the front out, because I know it will sit in the car all day, and I don’t want it to get wrinkled. I’ll drive it to him after school, he’ll take great pictures and charge me not very much at all, and I’ll happily go back and get it when he’s done. It’s like magic!

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And then I’ll spend the next two weeks trying to come up with a name for it, because it needs a fucking name and the one I came up with yesterday really does reference the Adam and Eve thing, and I don’t actually want to reference that…because that’s not what it’s about. It’s interesting that there is a reference to that story, but it’s not about that story.

And then at maybe 11:30 PM, I finally sat down in the living room (it took 10 minutes to find my sketchbook, which in itself is sad) and started drawing. I have to admit that I was tired at that point, and I kept trying to Google images that would help my brain, like “woman standing with gun belt” and “arms akimbo.” Seriously. That was a thing. I finally gave up (my internet was cranky) and just started drawing.

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I have to admit that I did a rough pencil sketch first of where things needed to go because they needed to fit on the page, and that’s one of my issues: fitting things on the page. And I’m not sure about either hand. But I can always redo those parts. And no, I didn’t get very far. I was tired. I actually went to bed at a reasonable hour. No, not really. But reasonable for me.

Oh yeah, and the total for the Quilt That Has No Name Yet was 101 hours and 33 minutes (yikes!). Not a small or easy beast, but a nice beast nonetheless.

Tonight? Finish the drawing, rush over to Fed Ex before they close so I can enlarge it, and come back number it, so I can start tracing at class tomorrow. Yes. It DOES sound crazy. Why do you ask?

The Neverending Quilting

November 5, 2014

Oh my god, I just want to be done with it…the neverending quilting. That stage when you aren’t far enough along to be close to done, dammit. You can see the end of the dark tunnel, but it’s just a speck of light in the distance, not close enough to start running towards it, because you have to conserve your energy. Sigh. Even trying to get done with the outlining would have been OK, which was interesting, because when I started quilting (late, again) last night, I thought, oh no, you’re not going to finish the outlining tonight…even though the previous night you thought it was just one more night, that part of your brain was obviously delusional and just needed to go to bed. Then I started stitching, and I got about 45 minutes in, and I’m looking at it, and my brain is at war: one part is sure I can finish and the other is telling me to give up and go to bed (that’s really what the responsible, normal adult would have done, but as I have proven over and over again, although I am responsible with many things, making art and going to sleep at a reasonable hour are not my strong points). In the end, I kept going, sure, positive, convinced I could finish.

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I was so close…really, maybe another hour. But no. Sigh. Went to bed. Slept the sleep of the crazy dreamer who wanted to be DONE. Which is just stupid, because I would only be done with the OUTLINING. I still have to quilt the fucking background, and it’s proving to be a bitch, bunching up all over the place, trying to make a mess of my quilting, so I’ll be swearing at it and pulling at it and stretching it flat and wondering how all those people who quilt like 1/8″ apart do it without making a monstrous mess (this is why you are NOT one of those quilters. You think they’re crazy amazing for quilting that close together and they think you’re the same for cutting out a million pieces and then trying not to lose them all while ironing them together. Really, you’re all nuts.).

So I’m 8 hours in and I haven’t even finished the outlining, and I suspect I’m about halfway through, but really I don’t have a freakin’ clue. I do know that at only an hour a night, I’m not going to make my deadline. AND finish grades. AND hike on Saturday.

Oh well. And I really want to clean house; my bedroom and the studio are driving me nuts and I’m barely home long enough today to do anything. So. Yeah. Dysfunctional human much?

Don’t you wonder what happens in the artist’s brain to make the expression of some image (or sound or whatever) SO important that everything else seems pointless? I mean, food isn’t pointless, especially being diabetic, but I wish I had a replicator and could just ask it to make more of that avocado tomato salad this morning so I could take it to school. I have all the ingredients, but not the time (or mental energy, apparently). OK, I might find energy for that. Maybe. But I’d really rather finish sewing or do the next drawing or anything really rather than clean house. I wonder how close to hoarder status I’m approaching. That should motivate me to take the bags of clothes out of the entryway to the thrift shop today, except I don’t actually have time to do that.

Anyway. Writing is also taking up my time these days, but it’s OK. It was my November goal, and I realized at the time that it would be a stretch. I’m writing more than 2000 words a day on the novel at the moment, killing off characters with wild abandon and then going back and giving them a video entry or a first name only, because dammit, they had kids and I need their kids for genetic testing. In the book. Not in real life. I don’t have an outline for this book. I don’t know how it ends. I don’t know how it gets to the ending. I have a general feel for the shit that might happen and for the core problem of the book, but it’s writing itself. It reveals itself to me while I write…which honestly is the way I draw as well. Although I might have a drawing in my head, it doesn’t come fully apparent until pen hits paper, and I often have no idea where it will go until it’s done. I’m tapping into some part of my brain that just makes. It doesn’t really care what you think about it; hell, it barely cares what I think about it. It does take some direction, when I have some, but mostly I’m just spilling some synaptic goo out on paper or screen and trying to make sense of it afterwards.

Seriously. The book is gonna need a massive edit. But that’s OK. I hear that’s normal. Maybe tonight I’ll finish outlining, and then the light at the end of the tunnel might feel a bit closer. Sigh.


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