Tuesday, June 21, 2022

ICAD 2022 - Week 3

 Day 15/61 - Mix & Match
Mixed Washi tape, matched - not so much

16/61 - Jukebox
This is screaming for color but it took so long to draw it I stopped listening

17/61 - Mango
Micron Pen and Watercolor Markers

18/61 - Bitmap or Halftone (or something somewhat)
Zig dot markers, Cuttlelola electric pen

19/61 - Selvedge
Selvedge is the the finished edge of fabric that keeps it from fraying and this is what I used to make those three white puffed rolls. All of this on the card comes from the waste that was created when I was making masks at the beginning of the pandemic. I took the cut threads that were trimmed off and since I didn't have the correct product, I sandwiched the threads between two sheets of wax paper and sewed through it to hold the thread together. Then I peeled off the wax paper - not easy, but a tweezer helped. I took the selvedge pieces from the fabric and rolled it up, taking hand stitches along the bottom as I did to keep it together. I had planned on taking some of these and making a shadowbox but never got around to it so they came in handy today.

20/61 - Ouija Board
I used a tangle called Contacted.  Colored with paint pens and watercolor pencils.

21/61 - Solstice
I used a tangle on this one called Soluna.  It's a combination of the sun and a sliver of moon on the left side.  Paint pens and Stabilo markers.

Wednesday, June 15, 2022

ICAD 2022 - Week 2

 Day 8/61 - Pictogram
This is the universal symbol for "No" or "Not Allowed".  I originally wanted to do this in all red but decided to go the all color way in the end.  I used water color pencils. Circles were drawn with a Helix circle tool.

9/61 - Found
Items that were found in a basket on my craft table.  I don't remember if it was originally meant as a waste basket or a scrap basket.  Who saves snippets of ribbon this small?  Apparently me.

10/61 - Rubik's Cube 
Watercolor pencils and Micron marker

11/61 - Rainbow
Zig Dot Markers, Micron marker

12/61 - Blueprint and/or Cyanotype
I used Distress Oxide ink on the card first and then a blueprint background stamp from The Greetery which was embossed in white.  The butterfly is a sticker from the Dollar Tree and the white pieces were cut from another index card and outlined with colored pencil.

13/61 - Toy
I was coming up with a blank for this until I noticed a bread bag tag on my windowsill as I was doing the dishes.  I remembered I had a jar of them that I had started collecting for some reason not known to me now.  The openings in these tags reminded me of little bear faces and the colors reminded me of Care Bears.  I seem to remember reading that you could tell the day of the week the bread was baked by the color of the tag.  I didn't have many colored ones like this.  They're mostly white.  So it was nice to have a enough to make a nice little chorus line of Care Bears.

14/61 - Off Prompt (Mood Board) 
 Instead I went with honoring the Red, White, and Blue on Flag Day with some more of the bread bag tags.  The blue ones were light blue originally enhanced to royal with a Posca paint pen.

Just wanted to note that art doesn't have to be involved.  It can be as simple as gluing found objects to something else as I've done above.  There is nothing humbler than an index card as a base for art.  This is not meant to be a way to create sellable or museum quality artwork.  It's meant to reap the effects of creating something every day.  Here is a link to an article that MaryAnn of Magpie's Mumblings shared about The Healing Power of Stitch which I think relates to any art form as a creative practice.  

The takeaways that I got from the article are:

Creative Practice is therapy
Creative Practice is your safe space
Creative Practice is a way through dark times

You need to:
Stroke the lizard - the brain stem - to feel safe
Feed the mouse - the limbic system - for nourishment
Hug the monkey - the cortex - to feel connected

This is why I encourage you to buy a package of index cards and give it a try.

Monday, June 13, 2022

June - The Beginning

He brought me flowers for the 49th anniversary of our first date on June 1st.

A first June sunset.

Two ways.

A ride to search for turtles and birds.

And last Saturday night the sunset was visible in the distance while it was raining all around us.


Tuesday, June 7, 2022

ICAD 2022 - Week 1

June 1st means 61 days of Index Card art ahead.  I'm jumping in again for the 9th time.  Here's my cover card (which I think I gave a preview of already).

Day 1/61 - Asterisk
Sarasa Vintage Color Zebra Pens, Papermate Ink Joy, Watercolor pencils
The new Sarasa pen that I started with decided to crap out on me - plenty of ink in the barrel, but the roller ball seems to get stuck and stop working.  So I had to go with a second color.  

2/61 - Peony
Watercolor Pencils

3/61 - Maze or Labyrinth
I drew the labyrinth (could have gone with a simpler one, but I thought this would be a challenge and I was right).  Then, because the circular lines were a little shaky I thought adding the rainbow thread in the pathway would be a good idea.  Problem is that these ideas usually hit me after 10 pm.  Don't ask how long this took exactly.  Just know that the calendar page turned.  

I've been using my little portable light box and thought this resembled an eye through the top aperture.

A close up of the glued thread.  Tweezers and fast acting glue helped.

4/61 - Key
This is my key and keychain for most of our weekends in the summer.

5/61 - Pink
We planted pink and blue forget me nots on my father's grave when he died and the next year they appeared in our garden.  We did not plant them there.  They're mostly, if not all blue ones now.

6/61 - Daydream
"I could hide neath the wings of the bluebird as she sings, the 6 o'clock alarm would never ring......"

7/61 - Root
Do you like my clever carrot?
Bonus points if you know the 5 digit answer from the top down.

I've seen the prompts for next week and I'm not getting any good ideas right off the bat so I may be going off prompt for most of the week.  As you can see, I'm not spending a lot of time on backgrounds, at least now on this set of cards.  The important part for me is just getting something on the card on a daily basis.  That's the goal - to reinforce the habit of creating something every day.  No one said it had to be a finished product...... and who decides if it's finished or not?  Only me.

Tuesday, May 31, 2022

End of May Round Up

Here is Mr. Blue hanging out on the worm feeder.  I was weeding in that area and got a pretty good view of him.  Mrs. Blue is still tapping on the windows.  Can't figure it out!

GS1 and GS2 at GS2's birthday celebration.  6 and 3 - halfsies.

The irises are blooming.

And I tried another Dorset button.  I fiddled around with a smaller button form and the sunflower pattern in a different color scheme.  

GS2 watering the tomatos that Papa started from seed and were planted in their raised bed planter.

GS1 playing goalie on a very hot Saturday morning.  

Wild geraniums in bloom.

The striped bass that HWNSNBP caught and released Saturday morning.  

Looks like a skyscraper, but no, it's Old Barney under there undergoing renovations.  The estimated time of completion is October - hoping it to be in time for the Lighthouse Challenge.

Looking up at lunch on Sunday.

Getting ready for ICAD with my title card for this year.

Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Clouds and Flowers and Birds, Oh My!

I've been doing a lot of weeding this month and spending a lot of time looking down.  And while there are interesting things that I find in the rocks and beds surrounding our property I have to take a break every once and a while and remember to look up. Usually the birds attract my attention with their antics, but on this day it was HWNSNBP who alerted me to look up over my right shoulder because our neighbor was cutting the grass and I hadn't heard the sound of the balloon in the sky very nearby - the first of the season.

And when I looked over my left shoulder I couldn't believe the clouds.

And closer.....

and closer......

and further away .....  Can you spot the plane?

Two minutes later they were gone - all piled together.

Over by the garage the brunnera are in full bloom.

So are the barberry bushes.  Those yellow flowers are always a surprise to me.

There are several clumps of wild geraniums scattered about.  Some consider them weeds but I let them thrive hoping they'll spread some more.  The flowers don't last long but they're so pretty bouncing in the wind.

And this combination really caught my attention.  The forget-me-nots have been outstanding this year and very prolific.  This is the new poppy that we added to this bed and I love the contrast in colors of the poppies themselves as well as against the blue forget-me-nots.  

And look what HWNSNBP found in the basement a couple of weeks ago that decided to bloom.  Two stalks opened at the same time.  On the top stalk the two blooms left of the center one are solid red while all the others are striped..... very unusual.  

And here's a bluebird update.

Five eggs were laid, the last one on April 12th.

On April 27th they hatched.  This was taken a couple of days after hatching.

And this was the last picture taken the week before they fledged.  We came home on Saturday and they had all left.

But curiously, a few days before that and right up until Monday of this week, the female bluebird was acting very strangly.  She kept fluttering around and into the windows of the dining room.  

She had me really worried that she would hurt herself by hitting the window too hard.  She would grab onto the screen or the door handle and perch there intermittently.  There were mealworms in the feeder and we even put some live ones in the planter outside the window to see if she was looking to be fed, but she kept up this behavior even after that.  She finally stopped when I put some cardboard and wrapping paper along the bottom 3 feet of the windows.  It's been a couple of days since she's been here so I'll remove the cardboard and paper and see if she returns.  

And I'll circle around back to looking down and say I had a big Oh My! last night when I went to get my little gardening trolly that I sit on when I weed.  I heard some rustling in the leaves that had collected against the house and what we refer to as the well cover though the well is no longer under it.  It only took me a moment to realize that it was a snake.  I can't tell you what kind it was but it was patterned. I did not see the head or tail, I just yelled to HWNSNBP that there was a snake there.....several anxious times...... and quickly left the area.  By the time he got there, it had burried itself in the leaves again and he questioned my outburst but he had brought a shovel with him and started moving the leaves around and there it was.  I had my phone camera at the ready, but before I could snap a picture the snake decided to check out the house and slithered up under the fascia board beneath the siding.  The back of our house is very low to the ground being on a hill, so the fascia board is almost on the ground giving the snake a very short distance to get to it.  And it was gone......into the house.......who knows where it is now.  HWNSNBP doesn't believe that it got into the house, but I am not so sure.  The mice get in somehow and I reminded him of the awards banquet that we had attended at a banquet facility when Rachel was in high school where everyone in the audience could see the snake slithering around in the plants that were above and behind the head table.  In the 43 years we've lived in this house I've never seen a snake - salamanders, toads, turtles and all sorts of mammals and birds, but no snakes ..... until now.