Non-digital media.

I’m going to be art journaling more. I was cleaning my craft area and had the strong urge to rearrange things, which led, of course, to playing with art tools: those less familiar (Poscas) and those well worn-in (a range of graphite and carbon pencils).

In the process I realized that, having intended and neglected to post here all night, I have been spending so much time on the computer that I’ve begun to lose touch with living…or at least, what life must have been like before the computer.

Really…there was life before the computer?

I actually wrote out something that I now realize was a poem that related the above. I’m not posting it, because there has to be some part of my life that I’m not putting online. I’m just surprised it came out of me, though. I don’t generally expect this brain to generate poems. It really sounded more like a notation, though…combined with paying attention to my lettering and spacing, on unlined paper. So…like a mixture of art and writing, in which I relax the rules of writing.

I should really mention that some of what I was messing around with in my art journal was another design for a linocut (cut linoleum block for printing)…which is something both unusual for me to do at this point in time (though I’ve both wanted and prepared for it), and something I was introduced to at least 20 years ago.

For some reason I like the idea of doing activities in which I can accidentally wound myself: linocuts obviously involve the use of ultra-sharp knives, like sewing and beadwork involve sharp pointed objects. At one time I intended to try woodcuts, but…linocuts are a bit more familiar…even if I did get the rice-starch glue, and I have the gouache.

And I still need to test out the Sennelier Prussian Blue watercolor I got, however long ago. I’ve wanted to view the quality and lightfastness next to Daniel Smith Prussian Blue, which I know fades slightly in color intensity after months in direct sunlight (it was at least six months; checking now would require untaping the thing from the window).

I did get discouraged after seeing the performance of some of my watercolor paints over time in direct sunlight…but dealing with brushes is a logical extension of my skills, where I could grow. (I can see the point now that some of my Art teachers emphasized, in never becoming stagnant in one’s practice.) Because I think I’m getting a little closer to even-keeled at this point, I’m thinking that I probably shouldn’t hold to, “sewing and beading only,” as a guide toward further art or craft practice, as I put forth recently.

Intimidation at the toxicity of pigments and paints (ironic); the trouble of finding well-performing quality brushes in large sizes and at reasonable prices; the cost of large sheets of watercolor paper; and the fact that I normally have trouble discerning subject matter for paintings; have all contributed to my being held up in progress with watercolor.

But: if I did want to be a subject specialist in an Academic setting…would I really want to take Art classes at the Master’s level? If I got the opportunity to focus not only on art production, but on what I’m actually mentally doing? I can see that.