Nine years ago John and Maria's mother passed away. She was a beautiful, calm spirit...an amazing woman and I see glimpses of her every time I look at John and Maria, and at her sister, brothers and nieces and nephews. I see Lucy everywhere I look.
So on March 31st...and every day...I will keep looking for Lucy, looking for that beauty and calm that she embodied. I love you, Lucy.
How fitting is it that here at the end of my month dedicated to Kawaii/Harajuku themed pieces that my friend Jess throws a Kawaii-themed birthday extravaganza? Perfect.
I worked on what started out as a neckpiece for about a week, and it went through many changes. For starters, I gathered the materials. Oddly enough, many of the materials I already had on hand, but I did go and purchase some items at two of my favorite places, Michael's and Deals. All in all, I spent about $20.00 total create this monstrosity, half of which was just the stuffed animals.
...and now the series is winding down. I had fun working on the piece this month and when it gets to the last few days I always think to myself, 'Does it make sense? Does it flow? What would I have done differently? If I was making ten more pieces, what would happen in those pieces to resolve the series?' These are just things that I think about...wait...okay, that I OBSESS over.
Another thing that was on my mind this weekend, and this goes back to my OCD tendencies and self-imposed 'rules and guidelines' for my daily art...what to do about the pieces from March 28-29th. Okay, hear me out. I stayed up late helping Jess and Sofie with party decorations...Jess was cooking with her husband Adam and friend Robin..Sof was bedazzling pinwheels...and me...I was sitting in the middle of a huge piece of canvas on the floor painting rainbow patterns. So when it came to finishing my daily piece...I just had a head drawn. Next thing you know I am sleeping.
So I got up early Saturday morning and finished up that piece...I actually ended up adding it to the top of a box that was part of Jessie's birthday present. I had started this box as an example/project to work on alongside my mixed media students at Muzart and it all just kind of came together. I glued the face on the top and added details with pain then embellished it with cabochons and gemstones. That was my piece for March 28th. The inside cover was the drawing/collage/painting combination that I have been working so far this year, heavily influenced by fashion. I went back into the piece and embellished the neckpiece with gems and then went back in with paint and added kawaii/harajuku style makeup to the face. I added a message to the inside bottom of the box and then filled it with five frames, a pad of mixed media paper, a pack of new microns and a Michael's gift card. I decided that this would count as my piece for March 29th and then got busy working on the final touches for my outfit for the evening.
Seems silly, but this was a big deal for me to make this decision. When I used the hashtag, #OCDartist...I really mean it!
Yesterday I wasn't feeling well so I went home early, ate a bajillion tums and slept. When I finally woke up I sat and finished up several pieces that I had started but was not quite finished with. Per my last post...I started off with a nice clean space (our dining room table) then I completely destroyed it to the point that we had to eat dinner on TV trays...and I had to deal with John making mean faces at me when he thought I wasn't looking (caught ya!) and eventually I cleaned up the space.
Well, kind of. I really just relocated to the couch and I have all the chaos there within my reach.
Anyway, I did finish all the work so I am up to date, and I added the pieces to Facebook and to my 'Recent Works' page. And as for the new mess...I will handle that later.
...and one more thing that I do to facilitate and maintain my ability to get inspired and make work...ORGANIZATION. Sometimes this is a part of my weekend routine, usually it is something I stop to do throughout the week. I cannot express enough how much I love to organize, I love to organization as much as I love to make art. Seriously. Please understand...I make a complete and utter MESS on a daily basis...getting dressed, picking out accessories, when I come home from work and change into my comfy clothes and certainly when I make my art...it's CHAOS. Looks like a war zone, just ask my husband...but part of the process it stopping and putting everything away. Even putting my jewelry is part of my routine...and it takes time to stop and put all the pieces from the week back but I do enjoy this part of the process. One thing for me is that I like to begin my creative time in an organized space, I am talking color-coordination and labeling and clear surfaces. I am always waging an internal battle between my love for 'displaying' all of my art materials and tools an my equal love for everything being put away and labeled. Sure, I mess it all up anyway when I work on an art project...but putting it back in order is also part of my routine and I just work better that way.
A couple of weeks ago I tackled re-organizing the small 'studio space' I have in the second bedroom and after I finished the project I was so happy.
It's kind of a wreck now (guess I better get some order back to the area soon!) , but this is what it looked like;
I wanted to post a little blurb (or a big lengthy diatribe, not sure yet) about inspiration. I am ALWAYS looking for inspiration..and inspiration always seems to find me.
Anyone knows me, or reads this here blog knows that I love organization and working within a general sense of routine and order. I have a few rituals that I do that help keep me inspired, and lot's of time this ritual happens on Saturday or Sunday. I wake up early no matter how late I stay up and my husband always sleeps in, so I am very productive in the mornings.
1) I usually workout and then go for a walk. I was an only child for nine years before my sister came along, and then my brother, so I feel really comfortable having time by myself and I actually think I need to have this time each week. I like to look around, stop and pet the neighborhood cats that I pass, and just be inside my own head.
An artist friend of mine, Cary Polkovitz wrote a book called 'Often Overlooked' and it has really changed my walks. Cary writes these amazing stories about everyday objects and discarded things that he encounters in his day to day life, so honestly, reading his stories has reminded me to look around me more. Sometimes I even stop and take photos of the things that I see to send to Cary. So anyway, I just walk, and look, and think...usually about a laundry list of things I have to do.
2) Many times my walks lead me to the beach, if I have the time. The beach is one of my favorite places to visit, even if I can just go for a few minutes. We live less than 2 miles from Hollywood Beach, and it has this awesome boardwalk. I like to walk up the boardwalk, stop and get a cafe con leche and just sit and look at the water and people watch. I very rarely get in the water, sometimes I don't even step on the sand...but I just like to be there.
3) Usually after the beach I like to head over to Barnes and Noble. Now, this used to be alot easier because I used to be able to walk to B&N...but then again, I had to drive to the beach, so that's okay. I don't make it out to B&N as much as I would like to, but I usualy make it over there one or two times a month. The first thing I do is go and grab a stack of fashion magazines, then some art magazines. Sometimes I will find some books and I bring those over. This past Sunday I found a book on drawing Kawaii style so I brought that over, along with a little plush unicorn just for some company. Then of course comes coffee. Next...either feverishly flipping through the pages and scribbling names of artists, ideas, etc. and sometimes sketching. I find that my intention is to sit and sketch but I get so excited/sidetracked by the material that I spend the whole time taking notes. Which is what happened this weekend, three hours later I am finished looking through everything and its time to head home.
By this time it is 12:30 and I can call John because I know he will be awake and starting to work on his to-do list...I am usually inspired and either hopped up on coffee and ready to get home and work...or ready to nap, but I am inspired just the same.
Special thanks to my husband, John Gironda for all his help with my art, and this show! I would like to dedicate my presentation of artwork today to his mother, the late Lucy A. Gironda. Lucy would have been 58 today. She is truly one of the most inspiring women I have had the privilege to know, and that inspiration fuels my passion for life, and for making my art each day, and for that I am grateful. Happy Birthday, Lucy.
I think more than anything, the recent death of Chris has made me think back on the actual time frame that I knew him, which for me was mostly my high school years. Chris dying brought back the memories of Amy dying...and all week I have had been having moments when I can remember specific memories and thoughts that I had back then...when one person passes I truly believe that you relive everyone you have ever lost all over again, and it is a very surreal feeling. March is already a tough month, this is the birth and death month of John's mother, Lucy...so yeah, I have been a little bit inside of my own head all week. I hope to emerge soon enough.
For my throw back Thursday photos on my social media pages yesterday I posted images from my high school yearbooks. The first image shows the cover of my senior yearbook. Like the cover suggests, this week I have been taking a 'second glance' and looking through this book from 1996, eighteen years ago. I was eighteen then. Some of my students are eighteen now. I can't believe it. Back then I did consider myself and artist, and as far as I know my classmates did, too. So I guess in many ways I am very much the same person as back then. I took as many art classes as I could that year with Mrs. Calcutt, my favorite teacher.
The picture to the right of the yearbook cover is the traditional senior class photo, I think we were supposed to be grouped in the shape of a '96'...kind of hard to tell and I can't remember. You can see where Chris is in that photo, he is in color. I am to his right with Kelly and Shelby, two of my cheer friends. Not pictured is Amy German, she had already passed away when this photo was taken.
The picture to the far right shows some artwork I made for the yearbook. They asked me to do a caricature of the senior class officers...I have never been that great at caricatures but looking back I guess the drawings look okay. If nothing else, it was kind of fun to see the image there, I had forgotten that I drew it.
So that was my mini-trip back to 1996. I created a piece of art last night to kind of work through some things. The main thing that I felt while I was making the piece was an overwhelming sense of love for the people in my life and a desire to spread t
From my IG @artinw_damuse...today's piece. was a bit of a a challenge because i wanted to stay somewhat within my theme for the month...but personally had to honor someone that passed, symbolized by this angel, welcoming him to the next, well...NEXT.
The colors are in my old high school colors, navy, columbia blue and white...and that's it. time to sleep. to my #ClassOf1996classmates, to my friends and family, to those that have passed that i try to honor daily and certainly to my amazing husband...just know how much i appreciate and love you, and that all of our lives are connected, even if it is a small connection. so feel that love and pass it on.
#art #CED2014 #inspiration#angel #arthivemagazine
Sometimes...well, something happens that stops everything and just makes you think.
...I found out yesterday that my HS boyfriend passed away. He was only 36. I don't have many pictures of him anymore, but this is one...there is so much going on in a photo that you can't always see. This was taken in my 18th birthday…they had a surprise party for me at my house…Chris had to get me there without suspecting anything...and he did, I was so surprised, and it is one of my favorite birthday memories... but what you can't tell from the photo is my best friend had been killed in a car accident about twenty days before… the lady in the photo is her mother, Jennifer...and we were all hurting so much… this is the photo that I will remember him by, because it sums up what he meant to me. Chris helped me to survive my senior year without Amy. I can honestly say that I do not know what would have happened to me without him, and for that I am thankful.
My heart goes out to his wife, to the Milcendeau family, and to all of his family and friends. The world is a better place for him having been here, I can attest to that.
Here is a link to Chris' obituary, it's worth reading (click here) and there is information about donating to the Delaware Brain Tumor Walk on behalf of Team Milcendeau, http://events.braintumor.org/delaware-brain-tumor-walk/.
And it just feels surreal. Makes me want to tell folks that I care about that I love them and I appreciate them being a part of my life. Life is too short. Remember that...and please... remind me because sometimes I forget.
...just a gal trying to get this art out of my soul to share with the world on a DAILY basis...no big deal...check out my ramblings!-JLG