Drawn2Life

Discovering my life Beautiful…one drawing at a time!


1 Comment

Beaufort Treasures

PaintingBeaufort

I’ve been at my drawing table today reliving wonderful memories from a trip to Beaufort with a friend last week. Though I had only taken my Prismacolor Fine Liner Pens, the memories came leaping to life as I added color just now. I am once again reminded how grateful I am for this sketchbook and for a practice of drawcumenting my life in it. I honestly don’t think I would experience (or remember) even half the beauty of my life without this practice of drawing it, painting it, collaging, recording the everyday and not-so everyday of life.

Getting out of town is not an everyday event for me. Especially to go with a friend, without husband or kids. It was absolutely delightful to go on this lovely jaunt with a fellow artist. Her name is Jennifer also. We painted and knitted the town “red”. Well, maybe not exactly cadmium red, but cerulean, sienna, gamboge and a host of other exquisite colors in yarn and in paint.

JM'sSunroom

Jennifer’s beach house is a sweet cottage near the waterfront in Beaufort. Though the first morning was wet and rainy (which was marvelous for knitting inside in her cozy sunroom drawn above), the rest of the time was spent in glorious sunshine either on the waterfront or at the ocean.

BeaufortInletTrees

This little spot was at the end of a street in Beaufort. The bent trees framed the water’s view. How wonderful it was to sit and be completely ensconced in my surroundings, drinking in the loveliness through the end of my pen.

BeaufortTreasures

At the beach, we walked and walked and picked up treasures. I wanted to be very selective and not return home with too many shells. I selected a few interesting shells (seen in the photo of my drawing table) and then sat to draw the horseshoe crab shell, the smaller crab shell with one eyeball attached, and the sea urchin. These seemed like special treasures, not your everyday finds at a beach.

I cannot share the other drawing I made while in Beaufort. I sat on the waterfront drawing a docked boat with all its many lines, shapes, tiny windows, masts, booms, rolled-up sails, etc. I should’ve snapped a photo of it before giving it to the boat owner. I had no idea he would walk up to us as we were drawing and begin a conversation. He seemed so appreciative of someone actually drawing his boat. There were a few other lovely conversations with passersby as well. You never know what friends you’ll make when you’re out with your sketchbook.

And you’ll never know what treasures you’ll find when you draw your life in a sketchbook.


4 Comments

Light in the Waiting Room

WaitingRoomLamp

I sat in the waiting room for the final appointment with my surgeon last week. The lamp on the table beside me was on even though it was daytime and fairly bright in the fluorescent hospital lighting. It struck me as odd, to have a lamp in a waiting room that was already lit with overhead lights. I marveled at the shape of the lamp, the light it was barely exuding, and the surroundings…a few tattered magazines, an art print on the wall…nothing special.

But it occurred to me that this moment, all these waiting room moments, COULD be special, if I just had an eye for it. From the first time I waited in this particular room back in April of 2014, so much has happened. I am different, physically and otherwise. Life is different. My outlook on life is different. This would be the last time (hopefully) that I would ever need to sit here. Sock knitting in my lap.

Special? Maybe not. But that lamp has stayed with me. I keep thinking:

There’s always a light in the waiting rooms of life.

Waiting rooms are everywhere. At soccer practice. In grocery store lines. In traffic. At intersections. We wait for vacations to come, for the weekend to arrive, for our ship to come in, for a big break, or just for life to make sense. And while we wait, life happens.

I want to be a waiting room artist. Ha! That sounds pathetic doesn’t it? I don’t mean that I want my artwork on the walls of waiting rooms across the medical community, although that wouldn’t be bad at all! What I mean by being a waiting room artist is someone who seizes the waiting room moments of life and looks for beauty, sees the light there, and creates in and throughout the waiting room days. Yep. That’s what I want to be. In fact, I think I already am, I just haven’t named it as such. Perhaps in naming this as my desire and goal, I will have less impatience in the waiting room moments. Perhaps I will stop pacing for the BIG moments and just reach for the special stuff already there in the waiting room.

This is a high calling I believe. It is the pinnacle of artful living. Being the kind of artist who takes his/her creativity into every moment of their day no matter the mundane activity at hand. Waiting can be FULL of LIGHT!

I just need to look for the lamp. Draw it. Collage it. And knit by it.


4 Comments

Kollage Kick

IMG_4109

I’ve been on a kollage kick lately! I love getting out of my usual drawing mode for excursions in collage. Here’s a process you might like to try sometime:

1. Swipe some watercolor or acrylic around on a blank page in your sketchbook.

2. While that’s drying, choose papers in colors that echo the colors you used to paint with. I enjoy using papers I have leftover from other collage times, leaving edges the way they were cut, or shapes that are already cut a certain way. I save everything from small bits to long skinny pieces, knowing they will come in handy for future collage fun.

3. Assemble an image or just a random abstract composition of shapes as I did here.

ArtasJazzLowRes

****If you want to add words, consider how they might be arranged on the page before gluing the picture pieces down. If you’re just wanting an image, then glue all elements onto the page. I just use Elmer’s glue.

4. This time I tried something that turned out really fun: I took a page from an article about jazz music. I just cut out random words I liked. Then I assembled them into a phrase I liked, adding in other letters from magazines to complete the sentence. This was much like the magnetic words we have on our fridge. We get to assemble them into any kind of poem, prose, joke or riddle we want to. Here’s the phrase I ended up with:

“The music itself is a response…an evolution of what jazzes us!”

This certainly was a page that evolved with all kinds of things that “jazz” me: color, papers, textures, words. It’s a true axiom for visual art as well as for music. We respond on paper, canvas, or instrument, allowing what we love to evolve.

May your day be filled with creative responses to what you love!


9 Comments

Eclection Days

EclectionDress&ChairLowRes

I’ve begun toting a big Aquabee sketchbook to the Friday morning drawing session at Eclection here in our town. This sketchbook measures a whopping 14″ x 17″, and the above is the first in this book.  I’ve loved this sketchbook in its 9″x9″ format so I knew I’d love the big size.

IMG_3410

(photo courtesy of Amanda:)

Election is the coolest place to draw!! I love it so much as they have such a variety of things to choose from for subject matter and I absolutely adore hanging out with the artists who join me.

EclectionFamilyWallLowRes

 

Above is a recent drawing of “the wall” at Eclection, which is ever-changing with the holidays and seasons. I’ve drawn it here before.

EclectionWindowLove2LowRes

And this is a recent drawing of a Valentine’s display under the front window. SO MUCH FUN!!! Chris and Amanda (the owner of Eclection and her amazing assistant) have asked us to offer some cards of our drawings of Eclection to sell in the shop. AND…sometime in April they are going to host a gallery opening for us! We are so excited about this! If you live anywhere near Kernersville, NC you should drop by and see all of our card selections! And while you’re at it, you just have to browse all the artisan’s booths…such creative and fun stuff, perfect for your home or for gifts.

Then come by on Friday mornings from 10-noon to draw with us! You’re guaranteed a good time and plenty of great stuff to draw!


4 Comments

Stemming the Tide? or Riding the Wave?

StemmingTideLowRes

The above drawing illustrates how I’m experiencing my days lately. The reasons for this are many and varied, not the least of which is just trying to get back up to speed with normal everyday living in the aftermath of major surgery. Life as a pastor’s wife, a mother of three incredibly talented musical kids, and my own enjoyable work as an artist and knit & crochet teacher makes for a lot of variety, but also a very full plate. Oldest daughter is a junior in college, middle son will be graduating from high school in three months and then going off to college, while youngest daughter is in middle school. There are times I’m not sure I’m even stemming the tide, but rather staring blankly at the wall of water coming at me, looming on the horizon. I keep reaching for my knitting needles and my sketchbook. Perhaps they are a life raft, or an anchor, offering some stability in the onslaught of living.

RidingWaveLowRes

This (above) is probably a more realistic view of my life right now. Drawing in my sketchbook, knitting as I go, actually allows me to ride the wave of life without drowning. Sure, I may be holding the sketchbook up above the water as it encroaches up my shoulders, but still…these are the things I can hang onto as wave after wave of “Life” hits. Reframing how my life “looks” is helpful, if not crucial, to enduring the current days. Drawing affords us the ability to re-draw, re-make what our feelings may be screaming at us, and allows us to see the bigger picture, rather than succumb to the momentary drama. Knitting reminds us that it is in the stitch by stitch of everyday living that something beautiful is made. I came across this quote by Vincent Van Gogh on a knitting pattern I recently purchased!! How cool is that?

“Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together.”

Vincent Van Gogh

I’ll keep on riding the wave, surfboarding on my sketchbook, and paddling with my knitting needles and hook. Might not get me very far, but will assuredly keep me afloat. That’s all I need.:)


11 Comments

Where I Sit…

AmaryllisViewLowRes

From where I sit, here in my studio sunroom, an amaryllis blooms above me. It sits on the piano grinning broadly at me while I knit, draw, write. It has been there a while, maybe a month or more. For the longest time, an inch of green shoot sat nestled in the loam. I watched impatiently, expecting the little green shoot to sprout up immediately upon watering. It took forever, it seemed, for the stalk and four leaves to reach its current two-foot height, unfurl the three red flags and drape them over so gracefully over the tippy top, to smile at me for days on end.

But now, the cadmium red flags are flagging, folding up their withered smiles one by one. Only a single face remains open, sharing its beauty with me.  If this amaryllis could speak of what it’s seen in the relatively short span of its life, it would tell you of page after page of writing, numerous drawings (many of amaryllis herself) and countless stitches in various colors and forms. It has enjoyed beautiful music by my son’s piano hands, sweet conversations with my husband and daughters, sunshine and snow falling all around the windowed room.

IMG_3878

Amaryllis has witnessed the ever-changing world of an artist and a family, just as I have witnessed the phases of its life. I recently watched Shall We Dance in which Susan Sarandon’s character says,

”We need a witness to our lives. There’s a billion people on the planet, what does any one life really mean? But in a marriage, you’re promising to care about everything. The good things, the bad things, the terrible things, the mundane things, all of it, all of the time, every day. You’re saying ‘Your life will not go unnoticed because I will notice it. Your life will not go unwitnessed because I will be your witness’.”

It struck me as a profound statement of not just marriage, but of friendship and parenting too. In our various communities, whether it be through church, school, work, or a yarn shop, we get to bear witness to others that we see them, acknowledge that they exist, encourage and support the beauty we see blooming in them.

Every word on the page bears witness to all we have seen and heard…this here is worth remembering.

WildHare4

Every stitch loops around a moment in time, gathering in the days as a permanent testament to the stitcher having seen, heard, lived the duration of that particular project.

DrawAmaryllis

Every line drawn records all that we experience around us as a witness to the beauty of every day details…the who, what, when, where, why of the phases of a life.

CanvasAmaryllis

And so I draw Amaryllis, and knit with its colors, and write of all I’ve witnessed through the phases of its brief life. This is artful living:  to declare in all our creating, “Your life (whether it be a flower, a place, a person) will not go unnoticed because I will notice it. Your life will not go un-witnessed because I will be your witness.”

I am grateful for this Artful Life. (*there is an entire category of this subject, Artful Life, if you care to read more on the subject. Look for the category in the right hand margin.The most recent  posts are listed first, so scroll down to read earlier ones.)

**I’ve been camping out over on my Knitterly Arts blog…drawing yes, but doing lots of looping around the moments! Join me there too if you like!


5 Comments

Sunrise

SunriseTodayLowRes

“The world…is full of resurrections… Every night that folds us up in darkness is a death; and those of you that have been out early, and have seen the first of the dawn, will know it – the day rises out of the night like a being that has burst its tomb and escaped into life.”

― George MacDonald, The Seaboard Parish

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 543 other followers