Every other Friday night, I have a quiet night at home with Miles and baby D while the older kids are out and about with Dad at their church youth groups. While they have Bible study, scavenger hunts and Karaoke, we relax in our peaceful home.
This week, Miles and I decided to start a painting club. We have a very involved secret handshake. And we both work on painting projects. We decided that sometimes, we’ll invite other people over to paint with us.
Here is what Miles made:
I had a vision of what I would make. Miles just made. My work turned out a bit stilted and contrived. His flowed.
I worked on my painting until it was over worked. Miles knew when to put his painting aside and start a new one.
I am not usually so uptight about art, but I think I’m out of practice and was a little anxious. Yes, I was anxious about Friday Night Art Club with Miles.
When I was in school, I had a wonderful drawing teacher – Crossan Hays Curry – who shocked us all in 1st year drawing. We drew the model, each of working SO hard to demonstrate our lofty 18 year old “skillzz”. After 30 minutes or so, he asked us to tear off our drawing, wad it up, and throw it in the trash. We did this every day, every drawing for a month.
When we were through, we knew that we were students. We were learners, experimenters, free to make mistakes or make beauty – either way, there would always be another chance tomorrow.
I guess it takes “practice” for grown ups (including 18 year olds) to unlearn our ways and loosen up enough to really be creative. I treasure the lessons learned that year, and am reminded of them this year in the Miles and Mom Painting Club.
I once lived next door to Iowa, in Nebraska. We would travel to Council Bluffs to visit friends. My memories of this place are the flat, flat, fields, the surprising cliffs rising out of them and the flat, wide, rivers running in them. I think there’s bound to be a lot of creativity when there’s a lot of sky….
It’s been a while since I’ve shared fun facts about a state in 52 Fridays. As I’m from Ohio, and it seems that people often confuse it with Iowa and Idaho, it seems appropriate to differentiate this fine state.
At some point in our older home’s history, an extra room was added on to the first floor. Since we’ve lived here it has alternately been “the studio”, “the office”, “the shove everything in there” room, and again “the office”.
In it’s latest transformation back to the land of the functional, I uncovered something of interest. A shelf jammed with this and that: wool slippers, cork kilim coasters, DIY nursery decor, an old clock in need of refinishing. What do all these have in common, you ask? They all have found a home on the shelf where projects go to die. Each just shy of completion: almost done but for one supply that I’ve run out of, or one tricky hurdle I don’t want to jump, or one disappointing outcome that I hadn’t expected.
As I reordered and organized my space, (now the “studio-office hybrid”) I had an epiphany. I created a small niche on half of one shelf, and piled up a few of these unfinished projects. These projects would be completed. They have to be completed before I am allowed to start any new projects. (And oh, how I do want to start some new projects!)
So this means that when I stop by JoAnn’s to pick up silver foil for the clock, I won’t stop by the clearance shelves for some perfect project-y deals. And when I drop off our clutter at the thrift store, I won’t also buy that amazing, unique mid-century side table at 30% off.
Wait, as I’m writing this, I realize that may have been a mistake. The table thing…. It was really cool, and only $7! Should I go back…?
Anyhow, as we’ve discussed before, I am a starter. Not so much a finisher. I’m hoping that by bribing myself with more, better, amazing projects to come, that I’ll finish up what I’ve begun. When the shelf is empty, I’ll add a few more from the pile, and get to work on those too. I’ll let you know how it goes.
A non-sequitur to end with… I started and finished this cake yesterday. And by “finished it” I do not mean that I ate it all in one day! It was good, but not great, and makes me want to perfect my “from scratch” techniques.
Hope you all have great days! See you soon.
Oh, friends, February has been challenging for us here at the Muller household. It’s not been without fun and spark and joy, but I think someone has been sick on any given day since the month began. So this is not a mommy blog, but frankly, all that I’ve been doing this month is being a mommy. I’ve needed to do that, and wanted to as well.
I think we turned a corner this weekend, and I set about to blog again, to catch up on 52 Fridays, Iowa edition (which was a l m o s t complete!!), when I lost the whole thing. Maybe in my previous sick haze, I forgot to save or something. Argh!!
Anyhow, I wanted to touch base, although I have no art or making or musing to share. I thought I’d just share a bit of the fun that’s been interspersed in our days this month.
Also, this Friday, I plan to share not one but two 52 Fridays editions – Iowa and Kansas. A double dose!! And can I just say, I’m so glad I memorized “The Fifty Nifty United States” as a child. I never knew how often it would come in handy!
I really enjoyed my tour of Indiana this week. It seems like there is a lot of art going on there, lots of young artists, and lots of support for the arts. I have a theory that I’m cooking up about arts in the Midwest. When it’s fully baked, I’ll share it with you. Until then, enjoy Indiana, friends! (Don’t forget that you can click on the images and visit the artists’ websites – it’s nice to see their entire body of work).