Creative, drawing

The secret ingredient

Here’s a little something I drew today for a creative challenge by @patrice_sketches. She’s donating $1 for every participating artist in her #pantryartproject to Lunch Break, a non-profit organization providing food, clothes, and community to people in Monmouth County, New Jersey.

The deadline is this Monday, so I wanted to get in before then. I usually see challenges of this sort, make mental note of them, but never really participate. I wanted to do things differently this time around.

The lines aren’t perfect (I was planning on drawing a second image) but ended up just going along with what I had. I like how I captured the side of the container. The trick is to use gouache; the opacity helps create dimension.

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Creativity, encouragement, haiku, Insecurity

Life of a Romantic

I seem to be waiting for a creative wind to come and suddenly motivate me to write, but that only happens when it wants to. I wrote a haiku about it.

I have been thinking
why wait for inspiration
if it never comes

Waiting for inspiration (of any sort) is my go-to. I don’t normally do something if I’m not in the mood to do it. I’ve been doing this since I can last remember. But the more I get through these socially-distanced days, the more I see that it’s not an effective way to live.

My moods will always vary. If some days I feel like doing things but not others, then will I ever find a true rhythm to my creative practice? Will it ever become a “practice” at all?

I need to change this pattern, or at least interrupt it. Since I know I have a tendency to wait on the winds of chance, I need to set up a regular time to write, draw, etc. It will go against my natural way of operating, but it will help me begin a true practice, regardless of inspiration.

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Creative

The land of 100 mailers

It’s been a rough start to the week. I’ve been in heavy thinking mode these last couple of days and feeling what feels like grief? Music, family, and friends have been my consolation so far.

I took a long walk, talking to a friend as I did, and came home to the box of mailers that I ordered last week. I’ve been wanting to mail some of my sketchbook pages out to friends but didn’t have the right size of envelope nor the right kind.

So today they arrived, all 100 of them. My studio (the desk area in my bedroom) is now the Land of 100 Mailers. Let’s see where they’ll go.

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Creative, drawing

“Can it be tomorrow already?”

I didn’t want to go to sleep last night because I was excited for today. What was today? An entire day free for creativity.

I didn’t end up getting much done, but it felt good to feel energized again, to just feel that surge. I can’t remember the last time I felt this good.

I read a little from Show Your Work!, took some notes (“The act of sharing is one of generosity—you’re putting something out there because you think it might be helpful or entertaining to someone on the other side of the screen”), and brewed my cup of coffee.

I had no plan for the day other than to make sure that I played with color and created something. The colors peach and red were on my mind when I awoke, so they became part of today’s palette.

I wanted to deviate from the usual watercolor drawings I do since I’ve been doing them for my live sessions on Instagram. I find myself getting bored with that approach, so I decided to play around a bit.

This was to change things up and remind myself that my sketchbook is just that, a sketchbook—a place that gives creative license to do whatever I feel like doing and the freedom to experiment.

Composure and restrictions are the last things I want coming from my sketchbook. I want my freedom to show. It’s meant to be messy.

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haiku

Stuccoed sky

One of my favorite things today, a haiku I wrote while looking up at the ceiling.

I was lying on the floor, listening to music, feeling stuck. I looked up and began seeing images in the midst of the textured ceiling. I spotted what looked like an older man and another that looked like the skeleton of a dog’s head.

I saw the resemblance of this evening with that of a summer’s day. Yet these clouds did not move. I counted syllables and wrote a haiku.

like the clouds above
the ceiling holds figures too
while I lie here

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haiku

Haiku queue

It wasn’t cabin fever that pushed me to go outside today, but rather my frustration with a work assignment that did. I needed to get out and walk.

As I made my way back home, I came up with the following description: Went on a much needed walk and came across spring. It turns out the description can be split into two stanzas, seven syllables and five syllables, respectively. I was onto a haiku without knowing it.

It’s interesting how I always seem to come up with the last two stanzas of a haiku and always have trouble with the first. It happens to me often. I know I have a list of unfinished haiku somewhere.

despite all of this
went on a much needed walk
and came across spring

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Creative

Bring back the analog!

Although I’ve shared something digitally every day this week, my hands-on self is bringing to my attention how much I miss doing analog work. By that I mean using tools like paints, markers, and paper.

Earlier this year, I used to get up in the morning to look through physical copies of magazines and would black out poems or write in new cartoon captions. Since I haven’t been doing much of that lately, the missing analog has become more evident.

Maybe it’s just that I miss my creative mornings, but I also know that using analog tools is cathartic for me. It helps me feel as though I’m creating, that I’m actually making something.

So, in order answer that call, I took my Posca markers earlier this week and started drawing what was in front of me. What resulted was a very Rugrats-esque depiction of my office supplies and wristwatch.

I was actually very pleasantly surprised and, now seeing the Rugrats logo, I might go back and fill the shapes in with that iconic purple and teal.

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haiku, Travels

Midnight muse

I was awakened in the middle of the night by an unfamiliar sound, one that grew as the wind picked up outside. Not making much of it, I shifted in bed and closed my eyes.

Again, I was awakened. This time not by sound but by words. I reached out for my notebook that was lying on the floor and began writing.

tend to your garden
all those things you said you would
even now they call

I settled back into bed. The sound outside persisted, but I turned away my ear. The words inside insisted, yet I listened.

go outside and see
hoping that the wind go down
will not make it stop

I got up and stumbled through the hall. The sound was coming from some metal decor my mom had put up. I took both down and made my way back to bed.

ahora si ya
puedo irme a dormir
bueno, lo dudo

What my writing looks like in the middle of the night and inscribed in the dark.
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haiku

Street poetry

I was about to cross the street when I noticed a pattern all too familiar — 5 syllables, 7 syllables, 5 syllables. A haiku.

I was taken aback and, out of excitement, pulled my friend out of traffic for her to see it. I was ecstatic.

You see, haiku have been a thing. I wrote three of them the day before and was already in the practice of counting my thoughts’ syllables. Now, the syllables were in front of me.

This haiku is by John Morse and is part of the NYC Department of Transportation’s Curbside Haiku, a safety education program and public art campaign that’s dispersed throughout the city.

It was a weekend of poetry, and I could not have been happier.

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