Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Art Class

Wow. I've been making art most of my life. My older cousin Dean threatened to hit me REALLY hard if I went outside the lines in his coloring book. I remember being quite frightened that he would notice I did get a speck out of the lines, so I outlined the entire picture with black crayon. I later decided I couldn't draw, so started making cartoons, and eventually gave up my arty self to my sister Anita, who I said was the artist of the family. I took a class about twenty years ago, based on the book, Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain, by Betty Edwards. A local gal taught the class and he changed how I think about things. Everything we render as an artist is merely a shape...

Now, I have taken another class, at Gage Academy of Art, in Seattle, and a wonderful, talented artist named Rita Natarova, has changed how I look at things again. I learned about edges, and how to render a drawing or painting with very little on the page. Well, I must say I learned how it's done. If I practice, I hope one day to be able to do it. Wow. Learning something new every twenty years. I highly recommend it.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Polaroid Cameras

I was thinking of technology the other day as I took a Polaroid photo of a friend to make a kitchy calendar for the refrigerator, with a tiny premade calendar stuck on below it, and a magnet on the back.

I bought that camera in 1987 when I was in Real Estate and a new agent in Seattle. We would take our data (printed on dot matrix printers, and cut with a paper cutter) and glue them on to a page. Above the data about the homes that we were comparing, we would add a photograph.

If we had time, we would take the photos with a 35 mm camera, and then have them developed and glue them above the data. If we didn't have time, and were in a rush to get the information to the client, we drove through neighborhoods, taking Polaroid photos and gluing them onto the top of the page...

My daughters said, "You know, mom, they are going to stop making Polaroid film. Everything digital now." I realized I've had the camera for 21 years. It was a very good 25 dollar investment.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Holiday Traditions

Gingerbread houses? Not at my childhood home. I was born a few days after Christmas, so the birthday cake idea seemed silly after overeating from Thanksgiving through Christmas. We started making "candy houses". I think it may have started with gingerbread, but my mother didn't care for the flavor of gingerbread. It was a tradition got to help stick the candy on, with a thick fast drying icing. I got to rip the candy off and eat it on my birthday. Eventually the cardboard boxes we made the houses out of became a sturdy, wooden house, including a wooden yard, and a wooden fence, and...of course, an outhouse. (including the opening door with a crescent moon on it). One year my father brought this contraption home from his cabinet shop. It has survived all the years (40 or so) and all the candy stuck on over foil.

What is your holiday tradition that has survived?