Project 365 Mosaic (82-90)

Getting caught up on my Project 365 Mosaics this week. As you can see, I continue to flip back and forth between photo journaling and working on compositional/technical skills. I love the produce photos, perhaps because of how they look against my new pale blue walls in the kitchen. I’m also digging the bubble bath photo, too, with its depth of field and bubble details.

Here are the links to see the full frame images-
1. 0323_The_Dock, 2. 0324_Jack, 3. 0325_BulldozingDirt, 4. 0326_Jasper, 5. 0327_Paint_Sample_Animals, 6. 0328_Bubble_Bath, 7. 0329_Recipe_Cards, 8. 0330_Portrait_of_a_Pineapple, 9. 0331_Produce_Portrait

The 5 Stages of Project 365 Grief

I woke up yesterday morning to a feeling of dread and slight depression.

I thought I had forgotten to take a photo for my Project 365.

I shuffled out to the kitchen for coffee and shared with my husband my sadness at breaking my photo streak. He was sympathetic and then realized that I had, in fact, taken a photo on Sunday. It was a no nothing picture of my son making a train out of the jelly packets at Perkins that I snapped with my camera phone.


What a relief. Streak remained unbroken. All the world is right again.

Fast forward to 3:52AM this morning. I’m awoken by my husband trying to shift over our little nighttime visitor (our son).

And the thought hits me.

I forgot to take a picture yesterday.


And from there I immediately cycled through the five stages of grief:

Denial– This was a quick stage. My DSLR is sitting right on my desk where it’s been for two days. Didn’t take any camera phone pictures yesterday, and I’m not even sure where my point and shoot is. Yep, there’s no denying it.

Anger– So, so angry at myself. How had I managed to do this TWO days in a row? I’d done so well with this project compared to last year where I forgot a day before the January. And there were so many moments I had thought about taking a photo yesterday: when I saw myself covered in paint and considering a self portrait; when my son and husband went to play in the yard; when I saw my camera sitting on my desk while I was blogging yesterday morning!

I was also angry at whomever said doing something for 30 days forms it into a habit since I blew it after 100 days.

Yes, I made it exactly 100 days before I screwed up. What a perfect number to screw up after.

Depression– Also known as a feeling of failure.

Bargaining– I considered using the photo mosaic I blogged about yesterday as my photo since I created that yesterday. (lame idea) Also considered changing the date on my camera and taking a picture this morning, then changing it back to today’s date.

Really? I was entertaining date-stamp cheating? Kind of extreme for a project that, realistically, no one would notice I missed a day but me.

And finally,

Acceptance– Yes, I slipped up. I’m deep into home renovations again, which is exactly when and how I got off track with last year’s attempt at a Project 365. But I am determined to see this through and have realized that I just need to take other steps to ensure I don’t forget again, like a reminder on my nightstand.

And if I make it 364/365, that’s still a 99.72% completion rate.

Pretty close to perfection for a mere mortal, right?

Blind Contour Giraffes-Drawing Lab 2


Blind contour drawing involves looking only at the object, not at your paper. Lab #2 from Carla Sonheim’s Drawing Lab for Mixed-Media Artists was to blind contour draw giraffes from photos. Although to look at my drawings, you’d think I was drawing horses.

This is an exercise that I’ve encountered in drawing classes and books in the past. It’s a valuable exercise because it stresses focusing on the contours and lines of your subject rather than rely on what your brain thinks a particular subject looks like.

What often happens in this exercise is that you draw too quickly, which I did. I think that’s why the necks were so short on many of my giraffes. Proof that I need to do less thinking and more observing, a lesson for drawing and for living.

For fun, I decided to take one of my drawings a little further and add some design elements to it:

Rotate the little guy, add some color and a pattern of mine and BAM!- what was a goofy little contour drawing suddenly became something I loved! I might just print it out for Jack and put it in his room.

If you want to build confidence in your artistic/drawing abilities, I highly recommend Carla’s book. It removes the stress so many creatives and “non-creatives” feel about drawing and makes it something fun. (I put “non-creatives” in quotes because I really believe everyone has it in them, it’s just a skill they have to develop, like reading or writing.)

And if you do buy the book and have a blog, I’d love to see you join Angie Allen’s meetup, where folks link to their weekly drawing labs. If you want to see some other blind contour giraffe posts, Angie has them gathered at the end of her post.

30 Cats

I did it. I decided to join Angie Allen’s “Drawing Lab” group based on Carla Sonheim’s,¬†Drawing Lab, a book which I mentioned a few months back.

drawing lab bookI hesitated to join Angie’s group because I worried about committing myself to a project that wasn’t work related, especially since I’m already doing a Project 365 photo project and trying to get a line of new printables ready to sell.

And then I remembered why I bought the book.

I wanted to feel more confident about my drawing skills and develop my style, things that would ultimately help my creative business.


And when I pulled out the 30 cats I drew for Lab #1 and realized that I drew them over 5 months ago, I realized how quickly time goes by and how easy it is to continue putting off things. I was so excited when I bought this book, but here I was letting it get buried and forgotten.

No more.

So here goes- Lab 1-“Draw Cats in Bed.”

30 cat drawings

As you can see, there are some that kinda cute, some that elicit more of a “WTF?” response. The ones with a star circled above them are ones that I liked for whatever particular reason.

cat drawingsIf anything, I hope posting these assignments will keep me accountable and perhaps reassure you of your own drawing skills.

If you’re so inclined to join me, Angie, and the rest of the group, you can add your drawings to the “Drawing Lab” Flickr group or post them on your blog and link to Angie’s page here. You can order the book through Amazon or through Carla Sonheim’s Etsy shop.

Hope to see you around!

The Mermaid Series

beach mermaid 1
I love the beach, but I’m not a sun worshiper. Sizzling on the sand is about the most boring thing on earth to me, so activities are a must. A book to read, a camera for snapping photos, something.

Recently I saw a photo of a mermaid created from found beach materials and I knew I had my summer project. Each trip to the beach this year, I plan on making a mermaid and photographing it as part of a series.

Hopefully my mermaid portraits improve as the summer rolls along, but avoiding shadows  is difficult, as is photographing my mermaids when some twit sets up camp six inches from where my son and I are making our mermaid (see orange towel in the photo on the right).

Paint Samples

Deciding on a paint color for the main living area of the house was/is turning into an screening test for OCD. I keep buying samples, painting swatches, studying them at different times of day, etc. It’s getting a little nutty given these are all very pale shades that will probably just end up being taken for white paint. But there are a lot of walls to cover and that’s a lot of time, money, and paint. Hence the obsessiveness.

Last week while painting yet another square swatch, J. thought I should paint a giraffe instead. And the menagerie continues to grow. When you walk in the front door of my house right now, the above photo is what you see. There’s something very freeing (and FUN!) about painting these quick little animal doodles on the wall. It’s kind of making me want to paint a real mural there or just around the corner down the hallway.

I wish they made chalkboard paint in white. That would be really fun, wouldn’t it?

Another Project 365 Mosaic (64-72)

Soon I’ll have this ebook project completed and I can get back to other things, but I am proud of myself for keeping up with my Project 365 photos. I’m now 20% of the way through the year- yay, me! Plus, this is truly a “just for me” bit of creating that helps keep me looking out for things to be noticed.

That one of my husband and my son just makes me melt every time I look at it.

Here are the links to the individual photos if you’d like to see their full frames-

1. 0305_Glowing, 2. 0307_Entangled, 3. 0308_Garbage_Pickup, 4. 0309_Milk_Bubbles, 5. 0310_Kitschy_Utensils, 6. 0306_Currently_Reading, 7. 0311_Kitschy_Utensils_Print, 8. 0312_Morning_Cereal, 9. 0313_Bulb

My Latest Project 365 Mosaic (55-63)

Lately all of my daily creating has been work related. I’m working on an ebook(s) of printable projects and that project board with all the little sticky notes has been my life. Well, that and my son. Pretty obvious from this latest Project 365 mosaic, huh?