Wow I sure took a break from blogging, huh? Things have gotten really crazy over the past few (many) months and to be honest I just wasn’t in a place where blogging made sense. I’ve always been a proponent of blogging when you feel like you should, and don’t blog when you’re just not in a good place to do it. Also I’ve been crazy busy. I:
Am now the head of design at a fast-paced startup
Went on a honeymoon to Japan for 2 weeks
Got a dog
Have been dealing with a ton of little things like wedding planning, honeymoon planning, my mom having surgery, my best friend moving to Boston, and just tons of stuff with work that have put me late in the office and pretty creatively drained in general
HOW HAVE YOU ALL BEEN THOUGH! It’s been forever since I’ve caught up on anyone’s blogs. Please tell me what’s new!
Here are some photos of my general life over the past month!
Hello! Here is a list of things that I’m really loving.
Gouache! I did a few gouache paintings last year but mostly I turned to my trusty watercolors. I’m loving the opaqueness of gouache these days though – it’s everything I want from my acrylics without having to haul out my giant palette and do a ton of work. Usually I just want to sit down and paint, and it’s hard to get into the flow of acrylics because I keep having to pause to mix new colors or wash brushes or grab new palette paper.
Baking – I used to bake all the time and fell out of the habit. But lately I’m back in the game – I’ve made olive bread with tons of olives (see beautiful photo above) and also tried my hand at vegan creme brulee, which I had to add lots more sugar and vanilla, but it turned out really nice! I need a real kitchen blowtorch for the sugar because if you try to put this under the broiler, the whole thing melts. Not fun. Maybe I’m excited about all this baking because of…
The arcade. The neon colors, sounds of coins and tickets and that 8-bit arcade “you won!” sound. I love everything about arcades. Everything. We’ve been trying to make a habit to go to arcades more often. Last time we went we won 50 tickets, which was JUST enough to score us two sour Jolly Rancher lollypops. If that’s not a perfect prize I don’t know what is.
Tomie, by Junji Ito. They released the collection a few months ago and I finally got my grubby little hands on it. It’s everything I hoped and dreamed and more.
What are you enjoying lately? Any recommendations for books or games or shows?
For years of urging my friend had encouraged me to watch at least one of Wes Anderson’s films. “You’d LOVE them,” he promised me, and he’s my oldest friend and knows me really well, and yet for some reason I just didn’t. I’m just generally so busy with other things that I rarely watch new movies, but after learning that Moonrise Kingdom contains imaginary books that were made up just for the film, Rob and I sat down last night to watch it.
I loved everything about it, but the fake books Suzy carries around were just as wonderful as I had hoped. If they could have taken everything that is Becky and distilled it into a movie, Moonrise Kingdom was that movie. I wanted to move into every single set. Of course I also sketched the whole time!
As for where I’ve been, the answer is busy but also really uninspired and burned out on winter. I bought a Switch and have been spending most of my evenings vegging out with it. We’ve had a very odd winter, alternating too warm and too cold, and only a couple of fierce snowstorms. You’d think that weather would be perfect for just staying in and painting, but it’s instead sapped my energy. Starting to get back into it as we move slowly toward light and warmth.
What are you looking forward to in the coming months?
How was your Saturday? I spent my day not doing art – sometimes I like to work with my hands in a way that art doesn’t always allow for (at least, not in the way that I want). I wanted a little table for my living room but wasn’t satisfied with the look (or the cost!) of anything I found online so I just built my own.
Unfortunately my camera totally lost the photo I took of the parts! I got all of them from Home Depot – I got a round piece of wood (precut and with a nice edge to it, very handy!) for the tabletop, 4 legs that I had them cut to the size I wanted, and brackets.
The legs had screws already attached, which was handy! They could easily screw into the brackets, and then the brackets attach to the tabletop. Here are the legs all sanded and ready to go!
The tabletop was a nice pine, but the color was a little yellowish, so I stained it with white stain. It was a gamble, honestly – I didn’t know they made white stain! It removed all the yellow perfectly, and left the wood a perfect blonde without diluting the details at all. So I got to keep the beautiful wood grain, but without the yellow! The kind I used was Varathane Antique White.
I drilled holes and attached the brackets, pretty easy!
After that, I just screwed the legs into the brackets, and then just used Varathane polyurethane on the top of the table. I actually tested out two polyurethanes on some scrap wood – Varathane and Minwax. Minwax was significantly darker! So I went with Varathane, which coated nicely and didn’t change the wood at all.
Super happy with how this turned out! My living room is SO cozy now. The old table I had, I just moved into another room, and it works out better in there anyway! Augustus’ face in this picture cracks me up – he looks so accusing!
Hope everyone’s having a great weekend! Mine has already been super productive!
So remember how I said I’d be posting like crazy! Following my creative process! Okay, well, last week I created 4 (that’s FOUR) new pieces – one painting and three shadowboxes. I also iterated through 20 logo designs for a friend and designed a poster/flyer for my NEW JOB. So this morning I woke up early, watched the sunset, and sat around doing nothing – no screens, just me and my coffee and my cats. It was really nice, I have to say.
Anyway pretty soon I will make a post about all of this, but for now, let’s do something fun! Let’s find out what Enneagram we are!
I’m a Four with a Five wing, which is labeled as the “Bohemian.” Fours are concerned with self-discovery and identity, and often feel huge emotions and self-blame. They feel like there is something missing from them that everyone else has, and they’d be happy if only they could find that thing. Though obviously these tests have a fair amount of confirmation bias, I’m enjoying reading about it, because it fits me to an uncanny T.
So what number are you? Let’s do something fun today and find out!