Tag Archives: water

When art holds more power than you think it should (the baby, revisited) 

Why is the concept of this baby in a painting so disturbing to me? 

I couldn’t stop the panic around this painting of a baby existing. It was as if it was something from a Stephen King novel; that simply by having a painting of a baby, I was putting that baby in danger… 

I asked Dr C if she had a bit of time after group to either destroy or alter the painting. She had a few minutes, and we took the time to make the painting feel a bit safer. I really had just wanted to destroy it, but she suggested altering it first in case that helped. We added some elements and removed a few others. She then gave me a few options where to store it till our next session. I had her leave again it where she had originally put it (it was a high-up, safe place with other client art so it wasn’t all alone) … 

As I was leaving her office, I realized I really wanted to be at the beach… I needed both to not be home alone, and to be somewhere that felt healing & safe.  I weighed my options, and figured the beach would do me good.

I took the 50 minute drive there, and wandered around for a bit. I sat by the water. I let the waves wash over my legs and get my pants wet. I didn’t care that they would be damp for the rest of the day. I collected rocks and shells and feathers and bones. It helped distract me…

Since leaving Dr C’s office, I’ve had a mantra running through my head, trying to convince myself that the baby in the painting is safe in Dr C’s care. I’m really not sure why it means so much to me. It’s just paint on paper, and it’s not even spouses to be me as a baby. It’s a little boy with no face. I’m not totally site why it feels so in-danger.

Hopefully it will feel safe for the remainder of the weekend.

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um, so getting back to what I was going to post… black pen test for mixed media art & art journals…

There was a question in an art journal fb group about the preferred black pens to use with mixed media and art journals. I’m a visual person, so I rounded up all the pens I have at home and did some tests to show how they work out. It’s certainly not all the ones available, but all the black pens & markers I could find at home.

I used Strathmore mixed media paper. I tested them on Golden brand gesso (creamier), Golden brand heavy gel, and Liquitex Basics gesso (rougher). The far right column was the pens directly on the paper, then (after heat-dried) washed over with a single pass of a soft brush full of water. I put the gessos and gel on fairly thick to the left side of their respective column, and thinner to the right (but only about 1.5″ wide in each column because I wasn’t thinking). It’s too humid for acrylic stuff to dry well here, so the thicker sides were still tacky when I did this. It effects the pen performance; the thinner sides took the pen better. Oh, and I did a last-minute triple-pass of matte medium over 1/2 the pen in the far left column…

The matte medium and water were used to the right of the lines in the individual examples in each column (except the one dedicated water column)…

The inc R2 & MegaBold pens are both dollar store finds…

Sadly, my favorite pen (Scarlet Lime) is no longer available. If anyone finds one that performs like that, with the same deep black, please point me in the right direction! I tried the FudeBall a while back (what was originally recommended to replace the Scarlet Lime), but it just didn’t hook me. In my opinion, it performed a lot like the dollar store pens for a much higher price. I used a friend’s at the time, so it’s not part of this test page. (I was just told that the Pilot Multiball pen and the Pilot BeGreen Recycled Permaball GellRollerball pen (UK) the same as the Scarlet Lime one… Will have to check both out.)

Does any of that even make sense? Hopefully the pics help…

If you have done something similar (or do it in the future), feel free to show & tell in the comments. If you allow, I will move your test up into the body of this post so it’s all in one place. 😉

 


Beach pics

The sky was amazing yesterday, though my phone’s camera did it no justice… I spent a lot of time watching the clouds change. It never did rain despite their ominous look. They held on to their lightning, but it was cool to watch from below… the water was full of Sargassum sea weed.  It’s baby turtle season. There were over a dozen nests roped-off just in that half mile stretch I was in. While it’s a positive thing to see so many nests, they are often only 1 or 2 species of turtle. Our coasts should be getting 5 out of the 7 species of I remember correctly. Hoping the little guys do well ♡


Last night’s art journal class & a moment of zen

I barely got out of bed yesterday. I got up to go to the bathroom and take care of the dogs…

In the early afternoon, I decided I need to take some sort of action to help me stabilize a bit. My friend then posted that there were still spots let in her journal class that night. I told her I was going. I didn’t really have the money for it, but I needed the distraction and to get out of bed (and the house). I’m really glad I went.

Not only was it great to see my friend, but I met some cool new people also. And the journal page came out really cool. I liked the concept so much (and I was bored waiting for the first one to dry) that I did one in both journals.

wpid-20150529_215618.jpgFirst we created an abstract background with tempera paint (the blocks, so it ended up looking like a grungier watercolor). It took a few layers, but they came out really cool. I might have to invest in some tempera blocks. Then we traced/drew some feather outlines on the page and painted around them with diluted gesso. I did the first page as she showed us (painting the whole page but the feathers). The second one I tweaked. One of the other ladies in class painted one half of her journal, then did the reverse (painted the feathers in) on the other half. Her’s came out really cool, so I tried a similar technique.

I showed TM both of them today, and upon seeing the smaller one, she commented how bright and happy the colors were… Then she looked closer and read the poem. She frowned a bit. She said it was surprising (or interesting? or striking? I can’t remember her exact word choice) that at first glance the page looked so happy & bright, but the words and additional images were so sad/dark/depressing. I hadn’t put it together in as many words at the time, but it was somewhat on purpose. It matches my presentation a lot of the time: I may look happy & bright and together at first glance, until you take a closer look. Then you see the darkness…

wpid-20150529_232604.jpgThe second page looks a bit more chaotic and grungy even at first glance, but the words are happier. They are lines/words from a song (“I won’t come down” & “fly”) I guess I liked the concept of having to look past initial impressions to get the true feel of the piece; contradictions in appearance and substance… Much like all of humanity. You can’t judge anything on appearance & first glances alone. There’s always more to it… (sorry, I don’t have an updated picture of the second one with the additional lyrics on it, but they are at the top, center of the spread).

I had a lot of fun doing them. I’m also ::gasp!:: pleased with how they turned out 😉

And finally, for a moment of zen; tonight’s sunset & moon: (yeah, so the sunset keeps getting more dramatic as it progresses… jumped up like 5 times for pics already. gonna miss this view a lot…)

 


Art Journal – Color-blocking

So, my friend started teaching at a new location for the summer. It will be weekly, though I doubt I can afford every week…

Anyway, it’s a shorter time also, so she will be doing less-complex journals, but they are still super fun.

This week, we did color-blocking. I wasn’t able to finish mine in the time alloted though. 1.5 hours just isn’t enough to allow for decisions and drying time. I did get a chance to work on it some more at home though.

Anyway, here it is… (first pic is what I completed in class, second pic is what I added at home. There’s still a few finishing touches to be had, but that will happen next week)

And for a moment of Zen: tonight’s sunset.

wpid-20150502_194943.jpg


Beach Distractions

I followed through on my plan to head to the beach today. It was nice. I walked almost 3 miles up to the lighthouse which I had not done in years. It was a nice walk. There were tons of shredded moon jellies washed up, a handful of man-o-war, and a mystery blue thing. Looking back at the picture of the blue thing, I should have tried to pick it up and flip it over. I’m thinking it was one of those really pretty, and quite rare blue mollusks that look like glass critters… I should have tossed him back into the water in case he could make it. I didn’t see him on the way back, so I hope someone else did it.

Trying to work on making the day my own. Will have to find another distraction for tomorrow… Maybe I’ll head back to the beach, maybe I’ll pay the alligators a visit. I’m not really sure. There will be a group hike at Everglades National Park on Jan 3rd that I may attend, but I would need to find a carpool person to go with. I’m not in the mood for all that driving by myself (almost 2 hours away, though further for most of the herp society members because they live one county north of me). Anyway, We’ll see…

Mom and I did our christmas thing tonight. We exchanged gifts and enjoyed dinner and dessert. Now I’m hanging out on the phone with L and watching the dogs. It’s nice that I could get a break from the stress of the season… now, to find some chocolate…

I was asking L earlier today if it was weird that I really wanted to talk to TL about today and my ability to follow-through on the distractions she had suggested… I guess it makes sense though, since it was something we were working on in therapy. It also makes sense in terms of the transference, because it feels very much like a little kid wanting to tell her parents that she did well in school. even the way the conversation went in my head, it sounded very little kid-ish – excited and bouncy and proud… wish I could have worked on that a bit more with her. maybe it would have lessened all this.


Saturday’s session rescheduled to Tuesday

my phone sucks sometimes and I missed both of TL’s calls on Saturday morning. She was out sick, and wanted to reschedule. I didn’t get the messages till I was almost there. I drove around for quite a bit, totally aimlessly, but knowing I didn’t want to go back home quite yet. When I first listened to her second message, I thought I heard extreme annoyance and anger in her voice. I thought she was pissed that I was being annoying by not responding to her first message from 30 minutes earlier. I left her a message apologizing for missing her call, and acknowledging the reschedule for later in the week. I then spent the next 45 minutes feeling like shit “for pissing TL off”… I ended up going for coffee at Panera, and tried to doodle and relax a bit. When I got back into the car again, I decided to listen to her message again (I know I tend to read anger into situations where there is none). It was weird hearing the message out of that panicked state. This time around (nearly 90 minutes later), I heard absolutely no annoyance in her voice. If anything, she expressed feeling bad for cancelling last-minute… I breathed a bit easier, and made a mental note to try to talk to her about that on Tuesday. I want to figure out how to be able to do some “reality checks” around when I think someone is angry with me for “fucking up”…

Anyway, I wound up at the beach eventually. It was a gorgeous day and it helped me forget the horrid week for a while. Sadly, as soon as I started home again, the flashbacks started again… I tried to get the same relief from the beach again today, but I couldn’t settle my head long enough to get any benefit from it. Today is day 6 of the body memories that just won’t give up. I’m getting really tired of the struggle. I may ask TL about seeing the ARNP, as the only things that get rid of the body memories at this point are PRN meds that knock me out, or cutting… Clearly I need to go with the PRN’s… :/ The stress of the memories coupled with not having the appointment yesterday, and health worries for L today has me wanting to cry. I can’t actually cry, but the feeling of needing to is there… I really hope TL feels better by Tuesday, and I hope she has a magic wand handy.