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 "Six shots of  Giggle Water and a Lobe Blaster, please."

It's getting hot. Why do I live in Florida?

It's one of those unanswerable questions.

I hope Pat did well at the Smithsonian Craft Show this last week. I hope she updates soon.

Hoping to get together one of these days with Felicia from jewelry class. She's playing with some stuff and I've commented and one thing and another and so on. I need to get back to metal. I need it.

Over a hundred days without missing on duolingo. I can't say that Welsh is beginning to make sense but it is getting a little more comprehensible.

I have lots to say but no oomph to say it. So more later.

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 I just wish I could make this thing prettier. I know it's kind of silly but maybe not but the aesthetics of the whole dreamwidth look just makes me kinda cringe. 

LJ has more free stuff to dress things up with but the whole moving the servers to Russia bit is worrisome.

And these journaling platforms are sort of passe. It's all facebook now. And facebook is fastfood compared to this. 

Oh, saw Pat today. She walked into Books-a-million and we sat and talked and caught up some. She's off to another show. And the Philly museum people came and begged her to come back to their craft show. She told them she had done their show and not sold anything and they begged her pretty please.

That's very cool.
rhiannon_black: (pirate dog)
The powers that be that own LJ have moved their servers from California (where they were subject to American law) to Russia (where they are subject to Putin).

So apparently, DW is the place to be right now.

I'm always willing to sheepily follow. Or maybe not.

DW has never seemed to catch fire. I don't think there are as many communities as on LJ, but maybe that will change too.

Anyway, start of a new year. Classes start on Wednesday, I'm thinking of taking Mixed Media again with M-- N--. Yes, I'm crazy.

Been doing loom knitting. Posted a few pix to FB, Pat came back with "I want to see you doing that with silver wire." One thing has led to another, almost, and I'm going to be building a loom. I've been thinking of using nails but today started to wonder if I should use wooden pegs of some sort. The websites on wire knitting suggest bamboo or wooden knitting needles. Arrgh. And haven't found anything about anyone loom knitting with wire. 

I'll figure it out.
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Loom knitting is a harmless addiction. I can stop anytime I want.

I've been keeping up with the walking (skipped Sunday but that's okay). Some days my pace is faster than others (usually I'll have a faster day and then back to sloth speed). Distance is getting easier. A little. My next goal is walking consistently to the Westgate Publix. Soon.

That's it for now.

Really, I can stop anytime I want.
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Still haven't had a freeze here in Florida. Color me happy. Some days ago I heard predictions of the mid-twenties and I was so not looking forward to that. Accuweather only showed a potential low of 31, then 33, then 35. I think we hit 40. It's all good. When I first stepped outside with the dog today, I knew we hadn't even had a touch of frost because the ferns were all green and happy, the butterfly gingers tall and green.

Walking has begun to show a positive effect. A few days ago when I turned on to University and looked towards the bus stop sign, I was happy, content, relaxed, not oh my god why is it still sooooooooooooooooooooooooo far away.

My pace is picking up, too.

Walked to the further stop at least twice during the week (always have to on the weekend but did so on at least Wednesday and Thursday, Monday and Tuesday are already not even a distant memory).

Had a lovely conversation with a lady named Gail who does the free giftwrap at BAM every year. She runs an animal rescue, Animal People. I asked her if she would like some snuggly blankets for the fur babies and she said she would.

Dropped off my Christmas gifts at Publix. I hope Tiesh likes them.

Used my round loom and made a hat. A hat for people with small heads. I could force it on me. But I come from a family of people with big heads. Once I figured out what I was doing, it was easy and fun. I'm going to make more. Next year at Christmas I hope to have hats, scarves, blankets, and the like to donate to folks. It's good to have a plan.

So, to sum up, chilly but not cold (crazy cold in Big Brother Land, they're at 6 degrees fahrenheit at almost eight thirty pm), made a new, almost friend in Gail, knitting is good, and walking is wonderful and I'm beginning to look forward to my daily walk.

And I almost plucked rosehips off Gartendirektor Otto Linne and Champneys Pink Cluster with the intention of popping them into some potting soil. Maybe tomorrow.
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I hied myself out of the house and got to walking this afternoon. Yeah, I've been walking most days, I've missed Sundays sometimes and just stayed home. In my defense, last week, on Saturday, I got to the bus bench across from the law library and zoom the effing bus blew past me. Really? Anyhoo, I sat for a moment, pondered, got up and started trudging again. Got to Westgate and into the Publix before the next #5 came by, which gave me two miles. It was tough, sad, but still, I did it.

So Sunday last, I rested.

My achilles tendinitis is still tres annoying. But it's not any worse.

Back to the story. I walked today and as I lumbered along I realized, hey, I'm going a tad faster. And really, just a tad, really. A smidgen of faster, a pinch. But it was something measureable by my brain. And little walks are easier than they were.

And going out, getting going, is reaching that tipping point of being pleasurable, as being, boy oh boy oh boy it's time for my walk.

And it's helping my overall mood level. Happier over all.

We have a cold front on its way. Accuweather says a low of 37 on Friday/Saturday and a low of 30 on Saturday/Sunday. I've also heard a low in the mid-twenties. No no no no no no no. Too cold. Too cold.

We're in a La Nina, kind of droughty, and though my roses are doing okay, not showing any drought-stress, I've been toying with the idea of dosing them with water from time to time, after adding maybe liquid fertilizer at about a quarter strength. And maybe top dressing them with Black Kow or something. I don't want to encourage a whole passel of growth right now. I don't know.

And am toying with planting some of the rose hips that some of the plants are sporting right now and seeing what I get. Couldn't hurt.

Back again

Nov. 20th, 2016 07:58 pm
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Quote of the day: Though worlds of wanwood leafmeal lie (Spring and Fall, by Gerard Manley Hopkins)

So here I am again. And only days have passed. I'm proud of myself.

Achilles tendinitis still plaguing me but, oddly enough, it hasn't worsened, even though I've been walking most days. Only about a mile a day (some days a bit more, some days a bit less, it evens out). It gives me hope.

Got an email from Mike Wright yesterday. It contained a link to Bill's obituary. I've been getting teary on and off since then. It's the end of the Gainesville Sketchers. Maybe someday I'll try to bring it back, GS2. I miss the man. I wish I'd kept in contact these last months. I figured he had a lot to deal with, figured it was cancer (in addition to his wife's health issues) and I didn't want to seem to be pressuring him. Because, really, I had only thought of saying "hi."

We have our first taste of cold coming in tonight. Supposed to be getting down to freezing, I haven't seen anything about a hard freeze. Supposed to be a warmer and dryer winter than average, we're in a la nina, apparently. Colder and snowier, maybe, for the north, warmer for us. I'll take it.
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Been meaning to do this forever. Lots of changes since the last time I posted. I had to say goodbye to both PyePye and Arizona. PyePye didn't quite make her 17th birthday--I took her to the vets on 2 August. Arizona made their birthday, 10 September, a few days later I noticed she had lost a lot of weight, quickly, and looked like a little old lady and was so fragile. I took her to vets on 16 September. Now it's just me, Breck (the fairy princess), and the Noodle Cat.

More later. I will be journaling more frequently. I will.

And walked a mile today and walked a bit on Friday. And it was much easier than I expected, even with the Achilles Tendonitis.

Oh, and have lost a bit of weight. Looks good and well not so good, you know, wrinkly bits. Love it.
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Been away forever. Well, sort of. I read LJ most every day, at least browse, but haven't written.

It's been a year since jewelry class ended, almost. Pat and I have gotten together a few times, once at her studio. I haven't made anything new in a year and that's got to change. The price of silver wavers, it's been going up a little bit but it's still under $20. So I really should order some and get to work.

Theo died last summer. I'm actually "friends" on facebook with this guy in Orlando (SCAer) who posted Theo's obit but I didn't see it at the time, there's just too much stuff that floods that page. I found out a couple months after Theo died when I did another search trying to see if I could find him. And I did. So sad.

Sandi and Theo gone in just a few months. So sad.

Been taking some pictures of my work. But still need to make product shots and lifestyle shots and get them up on Etsy.

Twisted my left knee sometime in late December. It's better but not healed yet. It's wearing. But it is better.

Started a diet. A serious diet. Medifast. Started it last Saturday, so not quite a week. I think it's doable. It's taking me a bit to adjust to the reduction in calories, sometimes get a bit lightheaded or tired. Or hungry like crazy. But it will be okay.

Oh, well, more later.
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I keep meaning to post something. I really do. And it's not like I've been super busy doing important stuff, just the usual farting around.

I have a pathetic Etsy store set up with one item. I need to take more pictures and get my act together. I really have a lot of bracelets to put up and maybe--fingers crossed--sell. I did sell that one to Pat, she wore it to her reunion as planned and got loads of praise for it. Hmmm, too bad I did have some business cards made up that she could have passed out to her former classmates.

This is it--the final semester of jewelry class. I need to get my butt in gear and see where we can meet for our "jewelry cooperative." I'm hoping for something on the Friday Art Walk, wouldn't that be amazing.

Had to change sketching day from Monday to Tuesday as I'm taking Stacy's class again and this year it's scheduled Monday-Wednesday from one to two-forty. This is decidedly better than nine o'clock, so hard finding a parking place at nine in the morning.

Taking Life Drawing again. The three sections originally scheduled filled up very early. I was in Dan's Tuesday-Thursday class, also one to two-forty. But they added a Friday morning class and I made the jump. So far, so good. The parking lot is busier on Friday morning for a nine o'clock class than I would have expected but nowhere near as bad as Monday through Thursday at the same time. We are, after all, the only visual arts class scheduled. So while the parking spaces are pretty much full, it's not a demolition derby.

Had to swing by Performance Trans and beg them (okay, no begging was required) to change my license plate for me. Those locking bolts have proven to be more than a little annoying. But they did it in a flash.

Namesake niece (sorta) was diagnosed with an ear infection and pneumonia a week ago. The antibiotics have apparently made quick work of both. Big Brother said he had taken to asking her "how are you feeling?" and she had taken to answering him by kicking him in the shin and saying "does that answer you question?"

They're cute at that age (almost five and a half).

First time back at sketchers, in weeks. About a month, I'd guess. Bill and I had agreed that the holiday weeks were too crazy making to meet up. Which turned out to be a good thing. The Cherry Red decided it need some fixing and I got a bad cold (fun way to spend Christmas). And apparently, Bill had some sort of health issue come up, sounds like it was post-Christmas but pre-New Years. He said he went in for some sort of test and ended up in the hospital for a procedure. Which is another reason we have not met. He's been slow to mend. He emailed me today saying he was feeling much better but that his daughter had gotten back in town from her assignment in Indianapolis and he was going to spend time with her today.

Still, I'm back on track. But after almost six years of sketching Mondays, it's been a bit of a wrench to switch to Tuesdays. I kept feeling, hmmm, odd, bereft, something, on Sunday when I didn't send out a reminder email and then Monday, oy, no sketching. And no class because of MLK Day.
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In a mood, I guess. Been meaning to update and yet haven't found the oomph to do it. I'm getting some work done towards getting the jewelry finished and ready to photograph and put up on line. Been dithering about getting all the stuff figured out for the etsy store. All the nuts and bolts, the about me stuff and the shop standards. Do I allow refunds/returns and under what circumstances? Shipping. Payment types accepted. Etc., etc., etc. And it's so very arrgh.

A girl in class this last term is doing the graphic design program and has all sorts of ideas. Karen and I plan to pick her brains.

But the hard part is still sitting down and working out all the nuts and bolts. And it's still very arrgh.

Had a bit of happy the other day. The raspberry plant that I thought died over the winter did it fact make it. I found it Monday. And I managed not to let it die these last through very dry, hot days. The rosemary cuttings, some of them, might be hanging on. I hope. They are at least not visibly dead, kaput, gone gone gone beyond.

A few weeks ago, 18 June, in class, I got the bad news--CFOP was closing its doors, forever. I couldn't believe it. I went on line and found the announcement on their facebook page. They couldn't compete with the big box stores and the internet. The art side of the store, the framing side, they were making money. It was the office supply/business furniture stuff that drove them under.

So sad so sad so sad. Said my goodbyes to Daniel and got a hug from Karen (she appreciated my comment of Noooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo). Karen and I are now friends on facebook. At least I'll be able to keep up with her and what's she's doing. I so enjoyed our conversations.

Hobby Lobby is supposedly about to open, maybe the first or so of August. Unfortunately, they don't sell either my sketchbook of choice or my beloved woodless pencils. I'll have to order both. I know Dick Blick sells the sketchbook I use. I don't remember if they have the pencils.
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Dear Harry Potter fanfic authors, let's talk color theory, shall we?

Harry Potter has green eyes (just like his mother).

And you so love putting him in green.

To bring out the color of his eyes.

Only that don't work.

Really.

Want to bring out the color of his eyes? Put him in red (for traditional color theory) or magenta. Magenta is the true complement, but red is close enough. You see, contrast makes colors more noticeable, makes them "pop." If Harry is flushed (with arousal, embarrassment, too much niacin), if he's sunburnt, hell, if he's gone and painted his face red to support Gryffindor, his eyes are going to look really really green.

Really.
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Our model didn't show up a few weeks ago so Dan had us exchange portraits. Did an underpainting of Nick in umber. It was pretty good. Meant to get a picture of it but left the camera (and even the dumb phone) in the car. Oops. Nick worked on my portrait last Tuesday (there are problems, how do I count the ways). I worked again on Nick's portrait on Thursday. Showed it to Stacy this morning. "Who is that?" she asked. "Nick." "Yeah, I know Nick and you captured him. The nose is too long though." She's being kind, there's more that needs to be worked on than that, but it's not a bad start. Best start I've done, I think. I took my time with drawing/tone.

Cold weather really does slow the drying of paint.

I think Dan's supposed to be bad from Memphis tomorrow (I think it was Memphis). And I need to gesso a panel before class. And I need to find out about odorless mineral spirits and open containers during class. Because I thought it was an absolute no-no. I can't find it on the school's website and it should be there.

I did not get my alternate persona fleshed out and my research finished (really, I've only done preliminary research, wikipedia is my friend, but it shouldn't be my [almost] only friend) so no me hanging out teaching the masses at Hoggetowne this year. Next year. I promise. Next year. At least I have a name. I think.
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I mean, I got the structures pretty close to all right. But when I looked at it a couple hours after class, weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeell the legs were long. How I got them that off I don't know. (Sure as hell I know, I didn't check and check and check my freakin not really measured measurements. I mean, who am I kidding? But really, why why why. Arrgh.)

But it's almost not bad. And I so wanted to shade it.

Going in to the studio on Friday, sort of noonish to three-ish. Allison expects to be able to sit for us. I'm not sure if I'll have a signed studio monitor form for it (Alora--and no she hasn't answered my email yet--was gone for the day or perhaps not in [but her office door was wide open and how weird is that if she were gone for the day], she might be back Friday. I have her admin's card.) But should the campus cops wander in, I'm going to wing it and look very wide eyed and maybe get a bit of a whine in my voice but allllllll the teachers say we can use the studios on Fridays, honest they do. Who knows. They never showed up when we were there in the recent past.

Diane is planning on joining us.

I might open the day up to other people as I get to know them better.

One doofus came over and critiqued my drawing mid-draw, very pontificatingly, very from on high. We turned the drawings around at the end of the session. I walked around and looked at my fellow classmates' work. Varying degrees of good and non-good. The pontiff's? Nothing remarkable. Not at all.

The older lady in class (she's going to be one of the "fun" ones, I can tell. Dan said, you know, if you did the homework last night, you'd have an easier time right now. "I was scared to do it."

Huh?

It's a Raphael. What's so scary? Do it right, do it wrong. What's scary? (Did I do it? No, I have to figure out where I put the book. I'm not buying another one.)

All in all, though, I'm sort of almost kind of pleased with the second drawing of the day (and the first wasn't too bad either). The seated pose, o she of the long long legs, had a few moments of elegance and grace to the line, the Robocop legs notwithstanding.
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Listening to Nina Simone right now. Someday I need to get some recordings of my voice and compare. Back in the day of the "master classes" with Brenda, one of my fellow students compared me, sort of, to Nina Simone. I don't get it myself but who knows.

Term is winding down. I'm sort of learning oil painting. I was trying to find room for the last panel (a whopping 24 by 30) and looked at some of my earlier stuff. The one of Jessica is much better than I had thought at the time. Anyway, started on the last panel. It's a two-model pose--Jessica and Bella--and it's a nice pose. I hope we get it set up right again on Tuesday. I'll squawk if we don't. As I've done on my last couple of paintings, I've concentrated on the initial drawing in umber and I don't rush into color right away. I'm determined to continue with my umber drawing on Tuesday and then start mixing colors and maybe starting laying in some background. I'm not going to start with color until I'm happy with the drawing.
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The day when a giant bunny brings baskets of dyed, hardboiled eggs and various candies cradled in colorful artificial grass in honor of the resurrected Christ.

My culture, but not my religion. Do I have a religion?

Diane and I are trading portraits. She started mine Tuesday last, worked some more on Thursday and after pondering, emailed me about the possibility of getting together Friday. She's been feeling selfish because I've been sitting and she's been painting. That will change, I hope, now that I get to work on my portrait. I got a start of it on Friday, did a silverpoint underdrawing and then an umber underpainting, very basic, not a full grisaille underpainting. So far, I like it.

Patricia (she's taking Painting I and II), happened upon us when we first started on Tuesday and said, oh, good. When you talked about trading last week I wanted to ask if I could get in on it but yada yada. Anyway, we both said, no problem and she set up an easel as well. On Thursday, about halfway through the "pose," Aubrey came in and said, damn, I didn't know you were doing this. Mind if I sketch you? Bwahaha, turnabout's fair play.

Next time, I'll bring a pillow.

Diane, a few minutes into her pose, said wow this is a hard chair. I mentioned the pillow idea, but that we'd have to bring it with us, not leave it, because too many things go walkabout.

We're talking about starting up a Friday portrait get together. The studio is always open Fridays, no classes ever scheduled for it, and it will be air conditioned through the summer.

I also mentioned my long-ago idea of sketching various rehearsals of dancers, actors, singers at Santa Fe and Diane is enthused. I'll bring it up to the others this week. And talk to Alora, again. There's also the community theatre and various dance places around town...

Tomorrow the world, eh?

Class remains very frustrating. I am resolved, though, to slow down, sketch out the pose more carefully, underpaint with umber and then stop the first night. The umber will dry (enough at least) not to muddy the colors the next night. I can spend the rest of the first night mixing colors. I can even have a test panel to play with.

I need to work on some stuff tonight and tomorrow to take in Monday morning for call for entries. I'll also have a cuff or two, the fold formed sterling things.
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Went to India Fest on Saturday. What a (mostly) waste of time. I did pick up a couple of very pretty bags. Could have done more shopping, it's dangerous in that way. But really, if you've seen one India Fest in Gainesville, you've seen all India Fests in Gainesville.

The woman I bought the bags from used to own Green Mango. I miss that place.

I had an all right masala dosa and a sort of okay sambar. The samosa I got, though, that was good.

Found a couple of crockpot recipes, when I started wandering around. Going to try making some crockpot sambar. That sounds good. And dum aloo. I don't know if I've ever had dum aloo but it sounds good and crockpotting it sounds like a natural.

Painting, and drawing, continue to be frustrating.

A week ago Monday, though, a little girl in Micanopy asked me if I would draw her picture. I did and it turned out pretty well. She has the original and I have a photocopy of not the greatest quality. She did an amazing job for a nine year old. She sat very well. It was a twenty minute drawing or so. Her pupil looks blown though it didn't look as bad in the original.

Hailey from Micanopy
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Quote of the day:

Doubt no more that Oberon—
Never doubt that Pan
Lived, and played a reed, and ran
After nymphs in a dark forest,
In the merry, credulous days,—
Lived, and led a fairy band
Over the indulgent land!
Ah, for in this dourest, sorest
Age man's eye has looked upon,
Death to fauns and death to fays,
Still the dog-wood dares to raise—
Healthy tree, with trunk and root—
Ivory bowls that bear no fruit,
And the starlings and the jays—
Birds that cannot even sing—
Dare to come again in spring! (Doubt No More That Oberon, Edna St Vincent Millay)

Had the Cherry Red in at Performance Trans by 8:00 o'clock (yeah, I'm shocked too) and was out the door before nine thirty. It was the number four cylinder again, but with a twist. Sure, there was some oil fouling but not enough to explain the rough running. Somehow the spark plug had cracked. Strange, right. How do you explain that? Evil mechanic gnomes whacking on my engine while I sleep through the night?

But it's fixed--for now. And it feels so strange. I keep expecting it to miss and it doesn't.

Hard to believe that it's been seven years (and a day) since I had to say goodbye to the little guy. My sweet little guy. Can't believe how much I miss him after all this time. Such a gift, he was, a blessing.

Oh, well, I'm dithering.
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Quote of the day: Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it. (Confucius)

It's cold up in Big Brotherland but not as bad as it could be. Or, perhaps, it's more correct to say, not as snowy as it could be. The worst of the storm stayed south of them.

Um, Painting has been frustrating. I've been feeling like I want to cry, much of the time. But we chatted, a bunch of us, including Dan, post class on Thursday and he said something about the Critic. And I remembered how I had a deal with my Inner Critic about singing, how it had worked quite admirably. So, I've turned to my Inner Critic, once more, and said, you, take this legal pad and pen, and you know the drill, no comments while I'm working.

Class should be less angsty, sturm and drangy from now on.

The magical mystery tour is waiting to take you away... )
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Quote of the day: One began to weave a crown
Of tendrils, leaves, and rough nuts brown
(Men sell not such in any town);
One heav'd the golden weight
Of dish and fruit to offer her:
“Come buy, come buy,” was still their cry.
Laura stared but did not stir,
Long'd but had no money:
The whisk-tail'd merchant bade her taste
In tones as smooth as honey, (Goblin Market, Christina Rosetti)

Going to the fair tomorrow. Hmmm, maybe that should be faire, who knows. I'll rendezvous with Sandi at her house, drop my car there and ride together. I'll have to be at her house at quarter after nine. Egads! It will still be close to freezing then. (Yup, we have a little cold front upon us, around, maybe just under freezing tonight and then maybe mid-twenties tomorrow night.) I'll take my sketchbook, a few pencils and my camera. And some money. There's always something frivolous to buy at the fair.

Dan was off in Memphis being bluesy. Classes went by quite smoothly. My painting of Sarah (new model, young, non-artist, doesn't understand why artists want nude models) and my drawings of Aubrey look, sort of, bi-pedal, humanoid. If you squint. And are really kind.

I've gotten some work done on the original self portrait in oil, solving, a bit, the fuzzy corona of hair problem. Multiple glazes seem to be working.

My plants are covered. I harvested a few tomatos today. The Tommy-toes have been quite tasty. Yum!

I'm sure there's more. I'll think of it later.

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