So about that radio silence last week, between the blood moon eclipse, Mercury in retrograde, Jared’s birthday, and getting a call for set work it’s been a crazy week to say the least. We threw a little party to celebrate on the 21st, and it has been nonstop chaos since.
My Life: Purses and Cardigans, Boots and Tool Belts
Wednesday I got a call for some set dec (set decoration) work, the first union job prospect I’ve had since January. I immediately went into panic mode rushing to get all my tools together in my kit and prepped for the intense day ahead.
Set dressing is a great way to make some major money quickly, but you definitely earn it. It’s usually 12 hour days loading furniture items (or anything from appliances to tires, even coffins) and transporting them to and from each location which invariably will be out in the sun or a musty unair-conditioned space. Its rough work especially in the Georgia summer heat, but if you get on a good crew it makes it a little more bearable. I can’t go into detail about what I’ve been doing for the last three days on set (signed a non-disclosure agreement) but I can promise you I’ve been sweating and wishing I had gotten more done in my studio when I had the chance.
Sometimes when I’m riding in the 5 ton box truck (if I’m not grabbing a quick nap) I try to write plans for what I’m going to do in the studio next. I managed to jot down a few things Thursday but quickly lost the brain power to do anything but schlep set dressing.
American made Chippewa 8″ waterproof steel-toe logger boot
My first day off Sunday I had to push back the studio time too because I absolutely had to get better work clothes and some new insoles for my boots. My feet have not been happy even in my awesome work boots, and ibuprofen was not helping me get through the day. I probably just blew through the money I just earned, but no regrets here because anything that makes working in 90+ degree weather slightly easier is definitely worth it.
That’s my life update, now I’m gonna try to go bust out some art in the studio while I still have time off!
This week’s work in progress is an idea. I am happy with where I ended on the roses, I have not actually traced the sunflowers, and I didn’t devote the time in the studio that I would have liked. What I have done is make a shift in the way that I think. I am considering how to make installation work combining sculpture and painting, it is an idea that has been on the back burner for quite some time now. I want to do a series about my experience (or lack of) with my cultural heritage(s) and examine how that tenuous connection has affected my life. I’ll share more when I can articulate my thoughts better, but that’s the idea that has been buzzing around my head.
Good fit for the Work Room
Another work in progress this past week has been me. I have been struggling to prioritize my life around art and even prioritize myself. I frequently get lost in the roles and relationships I have with others and don’t consider what I need to be happy or successful. I am making a concerted effort to center my thoughts and process my emotions, and spend time working out my own issues. I can already tell this shift in focus is beneficial because I am starting to think creatively again. The majority of my background thoughts have always been occupied with scheduling chores and how I can fix problems for others. It’s not constructive studio time when your brain is split between trying to tackle solutions for other people and trying to reform your own artistic process. Reshaping the way I think is probably one of the hardest things I’ve ever done but well worth it for the ability to create new ideas.
Bouquets of paint brushes interrupted by some flowers
I mean it’s going okay, not great, but not terrible. I have been working on the pink roses and rediscovering all the old problems that made me quit working on it in the first place. One thing I realize I’m doing is I’m treating the under-painting too preciously, so I drenched it in paint. It’s an experiment anyway so why not push it. I added the cool blues and greens like I wanted and I am enjoying the effect, but when it gets more tacky I’m going to need to address the flowers (again).
While that dries some I’m going to work on these sunflowers.
I drew an outline, prepped a canvas with more gesso, and sanded it smooth. I never tried smoothing a primed canvas before, probably out of laziness, so I’ll see how it goes. I need to trace it to the surface today, and I’m thinking about how I want to lay down color and the underpainting. From working on the roses I’m realizing I really am lacking in the planning and development part of my painting.
Planning isn’t the thing I need to work on, I need to refine my set up as well. I don’t feel like I have enough space to mix colors and I don’t like my paint storage system. With every step forward I see how much more I need to learn and do. I have a few ideas I’m trying out and some plans for arranging the space better as well. I will let you know as I tackle it!
So this was going to be a long elaborate post detailing my process for creating an illustration for my friend, but now it is a going to be a less elaborate post on why that isn’t happening.
Since I last posted Jared and I (mostly Jared) spent a week building a miniature interior of a house as a special effect for a film shoot. Like with any project we take on- it completely wrecked the house. I spent the next week trying to wrangle some laundry, clean up, and get my truck maintenanced while Jared was at a new model building job. With every step that feels like progress several steps back are required.
I haven’t been in the studio since working on the that one painting for my friend. The art guilt is just hits me in stacks, like the dishes that need to be cleaned, or the laundry piles that need addressing. It’s hard for me to concentrate on art when other to do lists are weighing on my shoulders.
One day this space will be usable.
I did get the dishes done, the laundry wrangled (though a new crop of clothes beckons), and I took care of my truck with all the extra stuff the mechanics found wrong with it ($$$). I am working on getting my office (sewing room, framing room-not paint room) together so I can tackle other projects I have had on the back burner. I even made myself sit down and work in my planner to figure out how to bring some order back to my life.
Planner work with washi tape!
And then last night we discovered the kitchen sink was leaky.
Well more or less busted and we aren’t really sure how long it has been going on either but judging from the black rotty look of the cabinet it has probably been a good minute. The piping doesn’t seem to be cut right and as a result one of the pipes has detached from its connection, at least that is what I assume is happening- in my very unprofessional opinion. Our leasing office has been notified and we will soon have maintenance out to fix it.
I going to continue to try to keep a better schedule with posting and writing and working on art. I can’t let a moldy, leaky sink or an expensive truck check up or a broken french press (oh yeah that happened too, my fault though) keep me from my goals! Stay tuned loyal reader (hi Mom!) I will have more to share.