Saturday, January 30, 2010

Peak in My Brain: Daisies and Dollies and Bones and Vintage Threads

Obviously I use a LOT of stock photos in my digital pieces, usually textures but sometimes whole objects. This leads to one of my new obsessional hobbies- stalking the Creative Commons on Flickr. This mosaic of recent favorites shows a lovely smattering of ideas that are gestating in my brain. Like Athena, only with less hammering pain and I'm not a Big Patriarchal Asshat God.

Credits and mosaic easy-peasy! Generated by Big Huge Labs. I really love big huge labs- Dharma the sweet aged dog is part lab. And fairly big huge.

1. 100_3280, 2. Circles and blocks, 3. pinkness, 4. Stitching 4, 5. pg 192 Skull and Spine, 6. object #3: bones, 7. Untitled, 8. Stoic, 9. One Year Anniversary..., 10. Plaid & Bows 2, 11. Like_a_Glove-Lydia_Shedlofsky-4, 12. Like_a_Glove-Rachael_Smith-7, 13. Ouija board, 14. crying is okay here, 15. Mirror Snip, 16. Remembering the day I set you free..., 17. Perfect Harmony1, 18. Perfect Harmony2, 19. anna on line 2, 20. Fire Escape - Pittsburgh

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

What's New and a Book Review. Maybe Two. Woo Hoo.

I'm over the WHOAholySHIT adjustment to the new job. Resolved: managing a shop = much more, much harder work than being an assistant. It's good though- I'm really proud of our progress. The shop's doing great- sales are up to prove it:) I have turned into Anya in the Magic Shop, doing the money dance. Now we have that and the bunny hate in common... Aaaand there's probably an ex or two lurking in the past who'd swear I'm a former vengeance demon as well.

Speaking of demons: the baby has tapped into some unholy amounts of hyperactivity. She's still a really easygoing chickadee, but the girl barely touches the ground lately. She bounces, flies, flutters, paces, and runs laps. Omigod with the laps! She does circles around our coffee table for hours.

We're otherwise in winter cocoon mode here, burning yummy-smelling wood and snuggling and reading and consuming more than our small family's share of hot cocoa and bean soups and chili. The great early-November feat of fitting my roundness into size 14 jeans has now turned into a shrugging Ah well... eff it. It's winter. At least the 16s fit. We finally took advantage of the employee perk of getting a deal on a gym membership at the YW. Shane's teaching Mollybird to swim.

I decided to give up coffee, to help with the anxiety and to finally follow my gyno nurses' long standing request to decrease caffeine. (I have fibroid cyst-filled boobs and am starting to worry that they could hide something during an exam.) Then I decided Ah well... eff it. It's winter, etc.

I've moved from all-Netflix-all-the-time back to consuming books like oxygen. I looked through A Million Little Pieces, struck like I was with Infinite Jest how similar addiction experiences are to depression, only with more waking up bloody-nosed and less eating. I like the style- the chopped up sentences and graphic directness work well with the content. (And do not, in fact, put me in mind of DFW, the KING of verbosity.) The feeling that dude's totally bragging that he's the Most Fucked Up of all addicted fuck-ups is tiresome, however. The whole liar deal doesn't really phase me. A book's a book whether memoir or embellishment.

Much more aligned with my taste is This Body. It's a fantasy premise but like The Time Traveler's Wife the mystical element works as a device to showcase character development. The whole story pivots on an axis that is A Midsummer Night's Dream. (So I loved it that much more...) The book is a very fleshed out meditation on the nature of women's lives as they relate to the family. A fortyish? Katharine dies and reincarnates a year later into the overdosed, freshly-dead, young Thisby. Thiz is an artist and consummate slacker/druggie/goth kid. Cutest moment? Katharine refers to goths as "winter people."

Having finished This Body over my first (cheaty!) cup of coffee, I dug into The Children of Men. The style of the novel is drastically different from the movie. I love it almost as much as I do the film adaptation, though. I might, all said and done, like the movie better. The frenetic pace and supersaturated feel works better with my emotional reaction to the plot. The first section of the book is very "whimper" but the film's sense of BANG! follows the second half.The film's action really begins nearly halfway into the novel, where there is a lot of background. Miriam the midwife still rocks my socks.

Coming soon:
  • My post about a beloved Haitian folk story book & new Vodoun-love art for Bloggers Unite for Haiti- get in on this Feb 1 event here.
  • A tour of my darling shop for Treasure Nest Tuesday

  • Another fantabulous UPrinting giveaway

  • My first product review wherein I will wax poetic about dog shit & removing evidence thereof

  • Some environmental activism news & such

The linkies:

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Treasurenest Tuesday #43: The Saddest Accessory Ever Made

I have yet to actually wear this brooch. I think the only event worthy of its awe-inspiring levels of emo is an art opening. You just don't show up for a staff meeting in this baby.

It came from my beloved Past & Present, and it was love at first sight. This piece could have been styled after my college sketchbook. I have an unfinished (I know this without even reaching for the memory- they were ALL unfinished) intaglio print of myself in this exact pose. I adore this thing. It is fantastically, deliciously strange.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Good Morning! We Have a Winner!

Just when you thought I'd abandoned Mommybloggerishness...

Bored with Random Integer Generator, I decided to enlist the help of one Mollybird to pick a winner:

Congratulations, Gabi!

What happens now?

Gabriella will get an email soon from the UPrinting Blog Sponsors explaining how to claim her prize- 100 free 4"X6" glossy postcards with full color printing on both sides.

I have intel that tells me I *might* be giving away a poster print next month. We shall see.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Primaries, Almost.

I found this great, young artist who does digital drawings. There should be a word for one who draws that's as elegant as painter. If I say I'm a drawer you imagine I contain socks or batteries, not a great use of linear variety. So this One Who Draws is Karla, and she posted this cute thing on her Tumblr mini-blog. I thought it was a peachy idea, so I give you:

My Favorite Colors, in Hex Code

Tomorrow, I'll post winners of the postcard giveaway.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Treasure Nest Tuesday #42: Mixed Metals

One day I wore a brown tee with grey jeans to work, with no jewelry. I felt wrong. Then I found this necklace & my universe was once more at peace. Clearly it was a process of necklace alchemy.

Don't forget to head back to the last post & comment to win ya some postcards!

Monday, January 18, 2010

It's a Giveaway! Comment to WIN 100 Postcards

Edit: Please excuse the crazy- that's Saturday the 23rd. Which is now today. So get to commenting:

UPrinting has more prize love for you! Comment on this post and win 100 free 4"X6" glossy postcards. Full color printing on both sides. (w00t!) Deadline for comments is Tuesday, January 23rd at 11:59pm EST. Winner pays shipping.

Let me know what you'll do with your postcards. (Check out UPrinting's Postcard Design Templates here.) I'll probably get an Etsy shop promo card with my host bloggy winnings. You could do the same for your shop. You could print up some ads for your favorite cause or your garage band. You could get some snazzy pieces for Operation Beautiful or your own guerrilla art action! Or use it to invite your minions to a sweet shindig or art opening. Use it how you like- but comment now! OK... go.

Pondering Wonders

I've been in this thought-loop for quite a while where I muse about the essential nature of human kind. What/who are we deeply, under the shiny veneer of social constructs and technology? Who are we as a species? I get in this examining mode and get cynical and Luddite and generally somewhat freaked out about the state of homo sapiens sapiens.

In the midst of one of these "What is human?" obsessions, I make little lists of reasons to enjoy being an earthiling grooving in the digital age. Following is an incomplete, impromptu list.

Things That Make It Worth The Weirdness of Being A First-World Human Today:
  • Hot running water- more specifically, the bath
  • Oral Contraceptives
  • Emergency Oral Contraceptives:) You'd think a Modern Human could read an effing calender, but awareness of monthly body goings-on is not my strong suit.
  • Coca-Cola. Such delicious, guilty goodness.
  • Text messaging, Twitter, etc.
  • Hair clippers
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Clonazepam
  • Netflix
  • Digital Watches*
  • LOST
  • Etsy
  • Corrective surgery allowing a pinch/grip hand and functional equipment for intercourse/baby-birthing.
  • Tattoo machines. I have a good pain threshold but if my tattoos had to be all Maori-like with the hammery hardcoreness... um, no.
  • Heating pads
  • the mp3
  • Benadryl
  • Electric can-openers
* Not really. I prefer gears & hands & stuff, but the list reminded me of Douglas Adams' description of humanity as mightily impressed with them.

Anyone have any favorites to add?

Sunday, January 10, 2010

More Tattoo Blather. Bored Yet?

I wasn't loving the aum symbol shaped axe in my Ganesha drawings, so I did some googling about and found that he is often depicted wielding an ankusa or ankus- an elephant hook. These are still used and have been since ancient times to train (Or, um, hi... torture) elephants. The hook digs deeply into their thick skin. Tears sprang up at the imagery of the deity reclaiming the weapon used to subdue his sacred animal. It also speaks to my reasons for the Ganesha tattoo- to claim my different-ness in a big, fierce, colorful way.

Interestingly, they can be quite pretty:

So that'll replace the axe and I'll work in some pretty frame shapes and swirlies and try to get in to see Angel.

More tears came upon learning a new name for the God: Ekadanta, which means single-tusked. Tears, um... it's a thing. I'm in Hell Week in my cycle at the height of PMDD symptoms and I couldn't list the numerous things that have made me cry this week. So it goes.

Boycott circuses, yo. Peace out.

{Note: This post was written before my diagnosis of phocomelia. Read about the shockingly wonderful moment when I was accidentally diagnosed, or read all my posts about my strange body.} 

Daughter of Ganesha

I've had a great evening, inking Sanskrit pseudo-calligraphy* in my sketchbook while we visited with my brother- who is bemused by my Lord's manboobs:) I drove him home & had some quality therapeutic car-singing with Incubus and then scanned in the text and laid it out with my dancing Ganesha. So, the tattoo is nearly ready to go and beg for my needle-artisan:

Text translates to: Beautiful strange daughter belonging to Ganesha.

In other freak-flag-flying news, I bought a tiny sterling silver ring for my elephant arm. Many friends have suggested I wear jewelry on this arm but I've always felt self-conscious until now. I love the way it feels. Very snuggly. Not like toe-socks, which I've recently discovered are pure, woven EVIL.

Couldn't you just PET the textures in that sweater? The photo turned out pretty well considering that the subject is normally the trigger finger.

*All my calligraphy is fake. I "color in" the thick lines. I have to control the width and sweep of the line far too much to allow a brush or slanted pen to do it for me. I've been thinking of going back to old school pens, though. Maybe I just never mastered it.

All hail Lord Ganesha, Sacred to Freaky Arm Mamas and Lord of Big Belly and Man Boobs. Om.

{Note: This post was written before my diagnosis of phocomelia. Read about the shockingly wonderful moment when I was accidentally diagnosed, or read all my posts about my strange body.}

Wednesday, January 6, 2010


Darlin' Christine at TheBlissChick has a redesign, featuring a header by me that I love so much I had to repost it:D

See? I make pretty:

Her latest post is a great one for creatives. How Pavlov's Dog Can Help You Get Big Things Done is a really yummy post title:) I have music that gets me to The Zone instantly. If I listen to Pearl Jam's Ten album, I am transported to a painting marathon my senior year of high school, trying to turn out quantity/quality for an AP credit test. (Um... slacker fail...) Tool takes me to the painting studio at State, and Songs In The Key of X takes me to the blast of synergy and sleeplessness that produced my senior art show. And running throughout all those memories we have The Tori, whose fairy bell/banshee wail always tops off my mojo supply.

Thanks, Christine, for being a beacon of sweetness for creatives and spiritualists and just plain CHICKS who need some nibbles of bliss.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Treasure Nest Tuesday #41: Fabric Covered Indian Mirror

This gorgeous mirror is a treasure from P&P from years ago.

I love it, and I love mirrors, and I love the stacking thing I have going on below:

Follow the shop on twitter!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Out of the Box. Box Here Being both Slang and Metaphor.

I justnowthisverysecond sent the set of final drawings to Lissa for her forthcoming book, What's Up Down There? Questions You'd Only Ask You Gynecologist if She Was Your Best Friend.

The sneaky peak is from the chapter on pregnancy. I love the big, starry, moon-belly popping out of the border. Most of the drawings employ that device- an organic shape extends beyond a squared border. It's a fun and pretty composition, and it sort of represents the whole "Hi, I'm your vagina. Nice to meet you" conversation Lissa has crafted. This project was a dream come true for me, and I'm so happy that Dr. Pinkie's book needed me.