Jun. 11th, 2008

tania: (Cats: The way to heaven)
....mmmboy, delicious! I had lunch with Joey today and stopped afterwards to poke the kittens at the pet store next door. They poked back. Two fuzzy little black things and a tabby today... this pet store is a blessing, it's constantly renewed, free-at-any-time kitten love. Anytime I need to recharge, they're there, waiting: kittens!

Today I painted a landscape. It was my first time painting a landscape for reals. At first I slapped down blobs and streaks of colour and thought "Oh hell, this sucks, I will never be able to pull a coherent image out of this, I will fail forever..." and then I eyedropped a couple of the sunset colours from the sky portion of my painting, which I'd completed a while back, and used those colours to pick out details of hillsides, trees, and a river reflecting the gold in the sky. Every time I paint, I'm captured once again by the wonderful revelation that light is THE most important thing, that in a painting it's LIGHT that defines form. This is so very different to how I've worked as a cartoonist, where light was an afterthought.

After that it all fell together with astonishing speed. My first attempt at a landscape and it's actually good...

A landscape! My personal art demon! I hadn't tried painting one in years, it's no wonder I didn't realise I'd somehow become competent at them (on the inside) in that time. This is the way it's always been for me, from the moment I was born. As a baby I didn't start talking as soon as I should have. When I finally opened my mouth, I moved right on to polysyballic words and was happily running around bleating 'hippopotamus' with perfect pronounciation. Mum always said I seemed to hold back on doing something new 'til I was sure I could do it right.

Honestly, I don't push myself anywhere near enough artistically. Half the reason I persist in a career in the arts is because if my employers weren't setting me challenges, I'd never really challenge myself. Case in point: some of my workmates go to Life Drawing one night per week. I do not. I could be so much better if I pushed myself.

But that's okay. Work pushes me all I need to be pushed, and I'm pushing myself quietly in other directions these days too.

Last night, Rick and Joey and I did the housework. The place looks great and between the three of us we knocked it over in no time. I whistled 'Clair de Lune' while I vaccumed and Rick announced afterwards that I was in the correct key (he has perfect pitch), then he and Joe dug out the sheet music and both had a practice of the song on Rick's baby grand. I read Sherlock Holmes on the couch. There is nothing like reading Holmes with a cat in your lap and a talented musician playing classical piano in the same room. In hindsight, I should've poured myself a glass of red. ;)

I also walked home last night for the first 'official' time (which means I'm alone and timing myself). From my workplace in Taringa to my home in Kenmore at a brisk pace, it's fifty minutes. I'm going to walk home every night it isn't raining; it was invigorating. (Plus, after three months of this I'll be back to fitting into my teeniest pair of jeans. PWNED, fat cells.)

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Tania Walker

August 2008

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