Trial and error! And then try again!

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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!

TODAY!

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.
“At home.”
“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…

stared…

felt…

heavyyyyy…

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!

P.S.
Yes! I said something like this out loud: Since I can’t draw, I paint in my way, ’cause that way makes me happy!

Been busy

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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…

 

have gone yellow

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mean yellow, the color.
don’t mean jealous
or something like that

mean that I
for some reason have gone
from dark to bright

but there has to be
some yang in the yin
and some yin in the yang

or else there is lack in balance

 

 

Colors as saviors

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Some years ago, 2013-14 I think, when I lived through my worst burn-out period and could neither read nor write due to difficulties to concentrate, I was saved by coloring. Coloring instead of writing, let my inner self find a way to express my need to be creative.

Actually, I began having fun with photos already in 2009, but from that time I seem to have destroyed more images than I actually created any. A couple of “hits”, but then it was more of a learning period than anything else. Fun yes, so nothing wrong with that, but I seem to have almost nothing left from those early years.

Four, five years later, I hadn’t yet experienced this type of coloring, an app with already drawn images to choose from. Not even any physical coloring book! Instead, I somehow began to use my own photos more frequently, and with them as a base, playing around with overlays, filters and such.

Very amusing it was, and after a while, I found out I was good at it. Well, not the very first trials of course, but soon enough. And I enjoyed it immensely!

Image based on an old photo of mine

Not long after, I happened to be placed at a church, and that led to that I began to make posters for the Sunday sermons. And that task grew to also make folders, adds, brochures and the monthly internal “newspaper”.

It was amazing to see how much the choice of colors, fonts, images etc influence the total. The layout and the interaction between dark and light are utterly important for what the poster, folder etc will say to the viewer. And this work for the church took over some of the time I earlier had spent on making my own images.

Now, I no longer have a church to make posters for, and actually – I don’t miss it! Not that I couldn’t make images in poster-format… I could if I wanted to.

Just an excerpt from a photo, which I’ve meddled with.

It’s just that I still don’t take many photos! I thought I would, once I came home, but I haven’t! Hopefully, I will again, sooner or later. Instead, during these two years, the coloring has grown on me. And also the apps, have developed into having more sophistic and varied possibilities. So I use these fairly simple drawings, which I color, and then finish with one or more added layers on Pixlr.

And Now?!?
I’m actually considering trying to paint on canvas!

I am considering what?!?!?!?!
I who can’t draw! Not a straight line! Or even less a curved one!!!

But I have three canvases at home, and I have acrylic paint and lots of pencils…

Okay! So it has been on my mind for several years actually. I have tried to paint with watercolors, aquarelle, the technique where you dilute the paint with water to get a paler, more or less transparent look, but that seemed to NOT be my cup of tea. (Oh, these British expressions…) Using watercolor without diluting it with water, seems to be more coherent to me. Painting gouache, in other words. Or with acrylic paint!

I admit!!! I’ve been storing this equipment, paint, pencils, and canvases for several years now – because I’m afraid! It’s so much easier just to take something where the sketch is already made, and just add colors! Clicking on icons on the iPad. EASY! How could my hands obey what my mind tells them when they never have done so in the past?

But just now, I came to think of those short “sketches” we did when I studied writing. Not draw, but write for five minutes or ten, whatever came into one’s mind. Perhaps we had a photo as inspiration, or a random sentence, or a couple of words…

At first, it was terrifying and difficult, the first years actually. But oddly enough! The closer I came to that “brain shut down burn out”, the easier it became for me to just let go in these short training sessions! That was really odd…

It must be the same with painting. I “just” have to relax and let go!

(And I have lately been having fantasies about having an easel standing here in the window corner… )

One of my latest coloring pieces.