Saturday, July 19, 2014

It's been 10 years already?

I went for a walk with my husband this morning and was listening to Jason Mraz new album "Yes!" when the song 3 Things came on. I burst into tears. I guess needed a cry. So there's that.

I signed up for an artist blog hop and realized there is not much here on my poor neglected blog. Not quite sure what I was thinking. I've been a bit crazed lately. On the upside, this blog is 10 years old, last month! So many times I came close to hitting the delete button.

When I started this blog in 2004 I had an office job with a bit too much extra computer time on my hands. 225 posts between June and December that year. I never hit that many post again. That year I decided to tackle college after two earlier failed attempts and my main artistic outlet was taking pictures with my phone. I also did a lot of doodling in my college classes. I did not consider myself an artist.

Since then:
I quit my day job
I discovered my favorite artistic outlet is ceramics but I will make art with whatever is available
I discovered my love of teaching
I received a Bachelors of Fine Arts.
I started referring to myself as an artist.
I have become an art teacher
I have road tripped thousands of miles across the US with my husband and son.
I have taking up camping as a hobby.
I have discovered I am driven to create and want to do more with my art but I'm am not sure what that means exactly.

Basically, the last 10 years have been good. I've grown.

I know my blogging has slowed because quick stuff ends up on Facebook and the more interesting aspects of my day (in the classroom) are not something I will write about.

I have not written too much about my creative journey for fear of sounding to whiney and angsty but it is something I should do to help me move forward.

Friday, July 18, 2014

At Sea

danger at sea

This is a piece I made a few months ago after taking Carla Sonheim's Gelli Printing classes. Today I changed my FB profile image to this one because it reflects a little bit about how I feel - alone in a boat with a scary monster.

A couple of years ago my aunt passed away (my mom's older sister - age 65) due to Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis. This is a disease that there is not much information on. It is progressive and terminal. In November I noticed my mom (age 61) breathing kind of funny. After many trips to various doctors, scans, tests, steroids and finally a open lung biopsy in May my mom was diagnosed with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis. It has been fast moving. She has been on full time oxygen since May and after a dramatic decrease in her ability to walk short distances without being winded, as of last week, followed by a 6 day hospital stay we are now working with hospice.

As the oldest and the one that is here (my sisters live across the county and she lives with me) it is such a mixed bag of emotions.  Navigating the waters of doctors, hospitals, legal paperwork and everything else is scary. I'm worried about doing the wrong things, missing import information, and generally doing all those grownup things that everyone else seems to handle with finesse.

On top of that, I know it is important that I also focus on my own family, my work and the things that keep me calm and relaxed - Making Art. In the end, I know everything will fall into place, life and death go hand in hand, and I will find a calm port. In the meantime...

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

pushing myself

This year has been a bit different. The teaching in the classroom is great but the system is driving me crazy. Every year more paperwork, more micromanagement and less focus on the students as people. I was talking to a student today who is in math 3 times a day but not an elective. If I was that student, I wouldn't want to go to school. Of course, none of this is all that new. Probably, I've just gotten to the point in my teaching experience that because I've got "the basics +" down, I now have more energy to notice the rest of the mess. I know I love the teaching part and don't want to stop doing that. I'm not sure of the system. If I ever write a book it will be called "How I Learned to Love Teaching and Hate the System: The Musings of a Slightly Crazed Art Teacher."

To push myself in a new direction I started taking some online classes. They have been great! One has opened up a new printmaking technique to me and the other is helping me work towards a personal goal of illustrating a fairy tale. I can already see ways to use these lessons with my own students as well as try some new things.

Tuesday, August 06, 2013