We have had terrible weather this weekend. Maybe I exaggerate a bit, but it has been some really fierce winds. Storm, when worst. Friday was at least sunny so the fact I had to go out on my bike, wasn’t that bad after all. Was lucky too, didn’t have the wind totally against me.
Saturday, on the contrary, offered not only storm gusts, but also rain. I stayed indoors the entire day.
I let the vacuum cleaner chase dust rats, I did the dishes – but mostly I was watching old episodes of Dr Who and doing solitaires on the iPad. Napping, of course. I do a lot of napping nowadays. Sunday, the weather had cleared up a bit, and I went for a short bike-ride. Only 8,3 kilometer. Bought bananas too…
I confess! I haven’t written a word since the last blog post! But I have continued to clean up among files and folders. It’s crazy how many copies, and copies of copies, there are on the hard drive. Still not finished that work, but slowly getting at least some order in the mess.
Today, I had an appointment with my physiotherapist before lunch, and late afternoon I paid a visit to the painting-study-group. At least I, could need a bit of proper “studying”.
On the other hand, I think painting is really fun to occupy myself with; but it is painting with words, that is my real vocation.
Despite the fact a 7-year-old can paint better than I, the colorful woman I did the last time, now has got a sister.
The “teacher” didn’t say much. Just asked if I had copied some image of a sort. “No”, I answered, and realized he had totally forgotten about my colorful other.
Then he left me, and I kept on struggling with painting lips.
As I said – a 7-year-old could do this better, but…
I. Don’t. Care!!!
… a girl just got to have fun…
Apropos the Ninny Rhino! I’ve decided to extend my commitment for the entire March, not only 9 days. I know I haven’t actually written anything, but it makes me land in a writer-mood. I’ve began longing for writing something more than occasional blog posts.
There is this prompt for March month that Diana Wallace Peach at Myths of the Mirror has on her blog. And I’m really tempted to join in.
Monday, and time again for spending some time at the library. Painting time. On the whole, it’s nice. But today I was almost on my way to go back home again. Since it almost was about: “do as you’re told, ’cause that is how things should be done”!
For a while, I felt bored and a bit sad, but soon I got cheeky instead. Almost, but just almost, impertinent.
Last time, my first time in this group, I told the leader that I can’t draw. It’s nothing odd about that! I can’t put together a car engine either! Or speak Russian! It doesn’t say I can’t learn to do one or all of those things, but as it is now – I can’t.
Last time, I tried to copy an already existing painting of a lady in a big hat. It turned out to be an angry woman in purple. And it took me only about two hours to paint.
I got reprimanded for that. I did it to fast! I should work slower and more thoroughly!
For goodness sake, man! I’m an ADHD person! I can’t go slow and I can’t draw and I can’t do as you say just because you say it! That just isn’t in me!!! The slow thing, that is… (sometimes I can, it depends on what it is.) When creativity pops – IT POPS! AT ONCE! And when something is done and ready – it is!
I noticed I was a bit nervous and hesitant. I remembered the teacher’s comment, and after last Monday… well… I have to admit! I didn’t know what to draw and then paint. Yeah! I ADMIT! I was afraid of even put the pen to the paper! I knew I wasn’t able to do the sketching part! I know about painting! But my hands don’t!
I looked through my photos on the iPhone if there was something I could use. Nada!
He asked where my painting from last Monday was.
“Go and fetch it?”
I looked at him and felt a big question mark in my face.
“Go home and fetch it?” He said once more.
Now I understood. He wanted me to continue working on that one.
I shook my head.
“No! I can’t do anything more with that one!”
He came with some propositions.
Hastily he browsed a book with paintings in front of my nose.
You know… flip flip flip flip flip…
“Some flower perhaps?” He showed me an image of a cluttered bouquet in a clay pot.
I didn’t answer.
So a book with the softest, and most detailed aquarelle paintings. Maybe, could I…. ???
MY GOODNESS! Who do you think I am? A pale-painting Frida Khaloo??? I still can’t draw and at earlier trials with aquarelle, I totally screwed it up!
(I didn’t say that out loud.)
Then he showed me the photo of that woman with the big hat. The original actually looked like something that could have been painted by Degas. Except for that hat instead of ballet shoes and tutu.
I just looked at him.
“That’s the one I painted last week.”
“The flowers then?”
The clay pot showed up in front of my eyes once more.
Inside me, I drew a deep sigh. I could have done better with something by Picasso… even…
“Okaaaay!” I said.
Just to have at least something to start with.
And get him going somewhere else.
He went to the copy-machine and came back with a copy of the painting, and I found a pencil and paper. And acrylic paint, though there really is a shortage of color choices…
I got black, blue, ochre yellow, and white.
Then I just sat there…
With the pen in the hand…
His last words wobbling in my head…
“Now, take it easy. Work slowly and thoroughly… ”
I felt like something down under.
And I don’t mean Australia.
Nor a kangaroo…
Did nothing but stared at the paper for a long, long time… glancing at the non-existing red, yellow, green etc acrylic colors, at the few possible brushes… stared at the empty paper…
Moved the hand with the pencil, gently… gently… moved the tip over the paper surface… maybe…. almost… it could be… the pot… a thin line across the sheet… some curves that perhaps and almost could be placeholders for leaves… for the flowers… gently… gently…
felt very heavy
wanted to go home
it wasn’t fun at all…
having to do what’s supposed to be the right way to do it when you can’t do it. (Gosh what a lot of nagging about “can’t”)
IT’S NOT MY WAY AND I STILL CAN’T DRAW OR SKETCH OR WHATEVER!!!
I didn’t want to go home either! I want these 2,5 painting hours every Monday, and I want them filled with fun! With companions! To feel inspired – like the last time… like when I DO my photos and PLAY with coloring images on the iPad… I want to lose myself in mindfulness and creativity…
NOTHING MORE AND NOTHING LESS!
I like the women, I’ve begun to know! I want to be in this world, doing something I’ve longed for, for a long time. Not keep on sitting home alone! I want to have more friends, and here seem to be friends!
I decided to get the fuck out of the “proper” way. I lay the pencil aside, grabbed a rather thin brush due for acrylic colors, began to paint… and lost myself in good feelings.
In this case, I’d rather do it the “wrong way” and have fun and feel nurtured and satisfied, than trying to do it the “right” way – and feel awful about it. I’m going to work a little bit more on this one though…
The fun thing is, when the painting was done, I got several positive reactions. Even He said something positive – hm… what was it he said? It was kind of pale, compared with what the others said, but still…
I don’t like to call him a teacher, I can’t see he is teaching anyone anything. He’s there, he’s a really good painter himself, and undoubtedly he knows about painting! But he says “Hi”… open the cupboard with the stuff… see too that we have something to do… and when we approaches the end of the hours, he looks at what we have done.
He is just a supervisor!!!
On the other hand – all the other woman are really good at what they do. I’m the only one who could use some tutoring. On the other hand – again – I’m clever enough to find out for myself. In theory, I already know quite a great deal about painting! And in reality! It’s just to keep on, trying, testing. What happens if I try this, if I do that? If I learn about brushes? When, where, how to use them and with which kind of colors?
Trial and errors! And then try again!
Yes! I said something like this out loud: Since I can’t draw, I paint in my way, ’cause that way makes me happy!
Never say: I can’t!
Maybe it was true when you were five, or maybe ten years ago. Maybe it was true even yesterday, or an hour ago. Does that mean it will be true tomorrow or for the rest of your life? No!
I can’t draw and I can’t paint. That’s something I’ve said to myself for as long as I can remember. And one fact is, that my hands never have obeyed what my mind has ordered them to do.
Of course, I’ve been drawing now and then during my life. In school, when I was very young, we actually had lessons in drawing. At that time, it was obviously important to have artistic and creative skills on the menu. Not only drawing. We also had music, both singing and learning some instrument. I’ve gone through the flute, a small wooden one, mandolin, guitar and then ended up with a piano for several years.
I was never any good in drawing, and I can just wonder – was this due to an actual lack of talent, or did I as a little one get so much negative critic that I started to believe it myself?
I don’t know! It may be one or the other, or a mix of both. On the other hand, it seemed that I already at a very early age had some flair for words. Learned early how to read, and not too long afterward I also started to write.
What I do remember is, that I, as a young girl for several years during school, had a best friend who was very skilled in drawing. So her skills in drawing and mine in writing naturally led to us making “books”. We made up some kind of stories, I wrote them down, and she made the illustrations.
Fair and square…
So it may be true, that my skills are painting with words, not with paint. However, I’ve realized I do have an “eye” for images, so in my head, there is some kind of talent for painting after all. It’s just that there is not much of a connection between my mind and how my hands respond to what my mind imagines.
Does that mean I could never learn to paint at all? Never say never! I told you that when I began this post. But there is a second question as well! Do I really, really want to be able to paint – and do it well?
Of course, I can already put paint on a piece of paper or on canvas! That’s not the hard part, per se! But can I do it and at least to myself feel content with the result? Fairly content?
First of all: I think one can learn almost anything one sets one’s mind to learn. I also know, I can hardly be a new Rembrandt or Gauguin or like any of the big painters. But that isn’t my goal anyway! I would like to paint just for the fun of it, and feel good about doing it!
When aiming for some kind of creativity to pursue, my main goal is and has always been, to write.
My first attempt to paint with watercolors, as a grown-up, was in spring 2014. I was in one of those “unemployeds-activities” we had to undertake, and one of the women in my group there, was also a painter. She offered us a couple of lessons in “how to paint aquarelle”!
I thought it sounded interesting, joined the group and it was really fun. But, as a matter of fact – it was also extremely difficult! It was a little bit easier after I had quit the floating water part, and instead used the color as it was. Creamy.
Those two paintings I made then and there, I later throw away. They were just too bad!
A year ago it was time for a new painting experiment. At that time I was back here in my hometown, had reconnected to some old friends and got some new ones. In one of my groups of new friends, we had the possibility to do different stuff, like, for example, paint! I tried acrylic colors on a small canvas.
Not a particularly beautiful result, but it was easier to do than to paint with watercolors, and I thought it was very fun doing it. Kind of satisfying!
About 6 months later, autumn 2018, with the same people and in the same place, I tried the water color again. There were no acrylic paint left…
Also this time I had absolutely no idea what I would make of it, but apart from the huge “A-tower” – which I have absolutely no idea why I painted it or why I even got the idea. But! Besides that, it turned out fairly good. Not GOOD, just fairly. From some distance, it is quite okay! Especially the see and the boat.
And was fun to do too! (to-do-too…)
The small one, I made last week. The canvas only 15 x 15 cm, and I was trying to paint a mandala. On free-hand…. HAHAHAHAHAHA
When making the photo of that one smaller in pixlr, I also found a frame I thought was fun, and added it…
I’m inclined to say, that those lessons in painting with watercolor in 2014, did something to me. I had friends who was painters in the other city, went to their exhibitions, talked to them, enjoyed their company. For about three years I’ve had three rather big canvases lying around together with acrylic colors, wax crayons, colorpens, glitterglue… without using them. Don’t laugh at me now! I have two small easels. One I use for my iPad… HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!
I have always liked to visit museums and exhibitions showing photos and paintings, so the concept per se wasn’t new to me. I had also since sometime around 2007 become more and more into making blog appearances and home pages. Mostly I enjoyed doing the layouts, with colors, fonts, images etc. I got nervous over the technical stuff behind it all…
And now! Since at least five or six years ago, I’ve been doing more and more experimenting with photos and other kinds of images on the computer and on the iPad especially. Also, the curiosity and appetite on painting with real paint on paper/canvas has grown stronger. PLUS the longing for new things in my life, meeting new friends and adding good things on the whole.
It’s a special treat to be doing stuff in the neighborhood. The local library has a lot going on, and the people you meet there, most of them, live nearby. On the same street, or the next one!
And I have lived in this neighborhood before, for quite many years, so I know where this is or that is! After been living 11 years in another city where you have no family and no roots, and then coming back to where you belong… it’s like coming to heaven!
So today I took the next step. In the afternoon I went to the nearby library, and attended a group of painting-people! And every Monday from now on, from 4 PM to 6.30 PM, I’ll gather together with these wonderful people. Yeah! I really had such a good time today and I so look forward to next Monday.
The result, considering painting? Well, yes! Not good, but it felt good!
By the way! I REFUSE to feel bad about these awkward paintings! I know they’re aren’t beautiful, but I’ve had fun painting them – they are mine, and they are born through my stubborn, uncooperative hands.
So this is today’s “work”. The “teacher” insinuated I worked too fast, I should have used at least 3 Mondays á 2,5 hours to create an image this size (A3). Well, maybe I AM a speedy person when creating something? Or not! Maybe I have to learn how to draw? If that’s even possible…
Anyhow! I think this lady looks so angry! I didn’t mean her to be this angry. Then I thought, this is some subconscious part of me. Imaging some, to the conscious me, unknown anger. I wonder what? And if so, how I can free it, release it, let it go?
Now, when looking at the photo of the painting, it’s like there is another face beneath the woman’s face. Not under the chin or so, more like it’s inside her! If you focus on the nose, you can see it. Her mouth is covered by the womans big red lips like a sticking plaster. And the eyes! Like if one is closed and the other one slightly dimmed, and almost – but not yet – covered by the womans big angry, filled with despair…
Or is she breaking free? Is THAT why the angry women is so askew? And not really angry? Just falling apart. No wonder there is pain involved…
AND! I CAN! In my own way…
When the sun is beaming
and the trees ain’t dancing
in the wind
I can’t stop myself
from leaving home
and walk in the woods
Most days I color something.
Often I color a Mandala.
Then I open Pixlr…
For quite many hours the last week, I’ve been trying to reach some kind of order among my photos and images. Not the easiest task, goodness knows, but somewhat necessary. I don’t know what I have, don’t know where to find a particular item, and everything is a total mess. So guess how it feels, when I now find this, and that, and those…
Nevertheless, I have sorted out before and also deleted lots and lots of images. And occasionally some I shouldn’t have. I can’t f.ex. find 10 – 15 from Stockholm… but, but… it isn’t that important. As long as I don’t delete any of the good ones I’ve created myself
I don’t like Apples “Photos” at all! It’s hopeless and a huge nuisance. A couple of years ago, before one of those upgrades of the operating system, can’t remember which one, it was okay! Not good, but reasonable! It was when they called it “iPhoto”.
Adobes Photoshop Elements 9 and its organizer were pretty good. But the one I had got old and stopped functioning. No! I’m not interested in the Creative Cloud that Adobe now has to offer. Must admit it’s a bit tempting to have not only Photoshop, but also InDesign and Illustrator. But that would be way too expensive. Every month paying a sum for something I don’t use regularly! Illustrator would have been a pure luxury thing. Have actually no use of InDesign either, but when I worked a lot with making folders and such those years, it was a great tool. Though, at that time the church paid for InDesign.
I might have the use for Photoshop, especially if an organizer is included as well, but still a cost I’m not prepared to admit to. If so – I want to buy, not lease!
So for the time being I’ve settled for an app called Hugo. It’s free and is quite good to use while sorting the images. One has a good view of the items and can easily move them from one folder to another, including creating new folders when needed.
Not the ultimate storage place, as it seems, but for the time being it’s good enough. Later, when I’ve decided which images I’ll store on an external hard drive, and which I’ll have handy in some kind of Cloud, then I’ll take the next step.
For now, I’m working on the MacBookPro emptying “Photo”, and aim for only having “Photo” as a short time storage place. One of the reasons for doing that, is that my iPad is getting old and has limited space. Only 16 GB to begin with, so 1000-1200 photos/images or more is impossible to have there via iCloud Photos.
Not even the Photo Stream is useful since there is not even enough room for that many photos either. Should guess about 100 photos at the same time is the limit, if I want to be able to do anything else on the iPad as well. The stupid thing is, when using iCloud it’s connected with the iPhone and the Mac – which per se is excellent – but yet those images take up physical space on the iPad! And with iCloud on, I can’t delete photos from the iPad only. They will be deleted everywhere else as well.
So, no iCloud involved with my photos and images! Since I mostly use the iPad when editing images or playing with one coloring app or another, to get those images and also keep the storing space as clean as possible, I have to send images to and fro iPad/iPhone/laptop all the time. Mostly I use AirDrop to do that, but sometimes I have to send by mail. I also have the stupid habit of saving the Jigsaw images as well, for some reason… and screenshots when I find something nice I want to save…
With just a smaller amount of images on Photos, I can have the settings on iCloud Photos or Photo Stream, and for now I’m working on getting there someday soon. During this weekend, hopefully.
As I started to say earlier, I don’t like Photos at all. It’s more like a stream only, not a good storage place. Of course one can create albums, a kind of tags, but if I forget to tag a photo – nothing tells me if there is a photo – or hundreds – that are untagged. It’s like WordPress – stupid updates that are supposed to make the work easier, but instead makes it less so – and more irritating…