This ‘n’ That

The good news is that I do have a few more posts of substance lined up behind this one, but for now, as long as the spirit is willing and the flesh is able, I’d like to get something down into electronic words.

I was going to try to read cram a chapter of two in out of the “textbook” for the final I have tomorrow in before bed. But I’ve had such a day that I would much rather let the outline I wrote up tonight be good enough. The class is such that the material is pretty self-explanatory, it’s just naming the theories that’s going to be a little tough. The nice thing though is that I’m not panicking!

I’ve finished the wedding art card for my friend whose wedding Charlie and I will be attending this weekend. I’ll post the big reveal on Twitter, Flickr, and Facebook for my non-interwebsy friends. This design is a definitely different take from the one I did for the last wedding I was a guest at, but like all children, I love it just the same.

I’ll have more news on the Zentangle front, but I have a few loose administrative ends to tie up before I go blabbing about it on the Internet. I promise, though, if everything works out, I’ll spill the details here.

Production Value

Despite all of my leanings, I must be an optimist, because I keep thinking that the 6-week summer semester is a good idea. The subject material in this class is interesting, but it’s not 3-hours-a session interesting, and I find myself fantasizing about leaving every break. I’m pretty sure I’ll be skipping on Thursday to get some headway on the second paper, and look through the notes. That is sadly a better use of the class time.

So I tell you this to mention that I recently used my Dick Blick gift card from Ada to buy myself a 5×7 sketchbook and a full set of Sakura pens, and I’ve taken to making a Zentangle in every class. I’m not sure if it’s helping to assist me in learning the course material and “zen-ing out,” but I’m definitely getting out there and producing.

I find myself having the same conversation with people about producing things. Mostly, it was a lot of deep theoretical conversations with bona fide artists (visual, performing, and musical), but recently, it was with someone who would not have considered themselves and artist in the traditional sense.

Basically, I encouraged him to produce not fr of accolades, but for production’s sake, and that eventually the accolades would follow. It reinforced to me that I need to just keep producing if I wanted to get back into the arts, which I am desperately missing and craving. As a result, I’m seeing the budding that’s occurring within me as far as working on 2 to 3 Zentangles per week.

Now, I just need to continue to leverage that production back here into my writing. I do eventually want to be published again in a non-fiction magazine for one of my personal essays, but the only way I’m going to a) generate a large enough body of work to draw from and b) re-hone my skills as a writer that have atrophied over the years is by staying in practice, and keeping up here on the blog is going to be the way to do it.

What I need to stop saying is, “I should…” and I need to start saying “I’m going to…”

NaBloPoMo’11: Dunzo

I did it! I completed my 5th NaBloPoMo!

I had fun this time: I didn’t feel like I needed to write a soliloquy every single day. I even included a haiku.

A lot of entries were started, thinking that I would go in one direction, and ended up finishing in a completely different place. One entry found me completely without inspiration for words, so I offered up a moment of Zen.

I got lucky, and had a few Friday5’s up my sleeve. I even started a new, and continuing project of Grace in Small Things. I also had the odd inspiration to include additional tidbits with entries, which I think I’m going to continue in the future.

I celebrated my quit-smoking anniversary, got back into Zentangling after a 4-month hiatus; and hey, I had some time to work on a Day Zero Project goal, too!

I’m still not sure if I’m ready for the Christmas season, but I feel better about it coming than I did then.

And, like every year, I close this year’s NaBloPoMo on the eve of Charlie’s and my anniversary. Tomorrow, we will be celebrating 9 years of brightening and ruining each other’s days.

I hope you enjoyed this year’s NaBloPoMo as much as I did!

NaBloPoMo’11: Tangles

As a perfectionist, it’s hard for me to undertake projects without being able to control everything: there’s always a risk of not doing things perfectly (“failing” as it were).

For so long, I’d been putting off more Zentangling, for fear that I wouldn’t do it right, which is laughable, because one of the major tenets of Zentangle is to rejoice in the imperfection.

At any rate, instead of telling myself to “Zentangle more often,” I just told myself to find my sketchbook; to find a tile template; to download a few tangles, just practice a tangle or two. How does one eat an entire elephant? One bite at a time.

I’m glad I pulled myself up to the table and tucked my napkin into my collar.  I think I’m hooked again: I spent the last three nights working on tiles.