Hey, everyone! Well, I haven’t listened to any music in a long time, but I was reminded of this sad fact yesterday when I was getting ready to bring some of my creations to a photo shoot. I was sort of nervous, and when I’m nervous about something I like to listen to music that makes me feel confident!! I’m always singing along to my music, so it’s got to be fast and the lyrics have to be inspiring (to me). This means I’m usually listening to something from the 70s or my beloved 80s, like Adam Ant. “Who?” you may be asking. What a shame! I think anyone older than me probably knows who he is (I sure hope!). I don’t know if I can even describe him! He’s everything I would hope to be if I were a man (ahaha). He wears historically-inspired make up and clothing, sings from the romanticized point of view of subjects usually found in adventure stories (like cowboys, princes, and pirates), and his music is definitely something else! I bet if you listened to “Goody Two Shoes” you’d recognize it. Here’s a different Adam Ant hit for you, though, “Stand and Deliver”:
If we’re discussing dreams and future plans, it would be fun to lay out my ideal workspace; my perfect studio. I know I would want it to be in my back yard so I could easily go to and from my house at any time, and I could be near my garden. The over-all style would have to be somewhere between a mad scientist’s lab, and the Addams’ living room with a plentiful helping of my favorite medium: GLITTER! (I’ll say it right now, if you think I’m tacky, it’s A-OK with me; I’m not always like this).
I’ll need lots of windows for natural light and ventilation (plus some fans to help that along if I’m painting with oils). Of course, I’ll also need some good overhead lighting throughout my studio for those all-nighters. The floor will need to either be concrete (stained and stenciled!), tile, or epoxy, because I know I’ll spill too much to keep up with wood or carpet (plus, carpet is just gross).
As far as furniture goes…
Huge table with a metal or zinc (I just found them!) top that can withstand my artistic temperament and is easy to clean. And a smaller table for my sewing machine.
Comfortable (and interesting) chairs without arms for the times I fold my legs under myself… and footstools for the rest of the time.
Lots of storage—rolling metal carts with different sized boxes and jars for various supplies and tools. Shelves for books (see tools) and more shelves and drawers for material storage.
It’d be nice to have a little corner with some comfy chairs and a coffee table for taking a break or if someone comes to visit. A little table for a coffeemaker, cups, and sugar would be nice, too.
And a big sink with drying racks for paint brushes!
Tools I’d need…
Acrylic paints, Oil paints and turpentine, Watercolors
Palates for each type of paint and lots of containers for colors I mix
All sorts of brushes, especially lots of tiny brushes (like 000 tiny)
Library of reference material—costumes, cryptozoology, fairytales, plants, animals, insects
A sewing machine, dress forms, fabric, thread, scissors, pins and cushions, trims, ribbons, lace, buttons, elastic, zippers, measuring tape, a fold-out cutting board
Of course, I’d always have found items (sometimes Goodwill/yard sale-found): doll parts (a favorite of mine), dead bugs, bones, weird toys and little treasures. (This is why I need all the storage!)
I really wouldn’t need a very big studio. Like I said, I’d like it to be in my backyard. Maybe it could look like its own tiny little house
I know I’ll be able to have all of this someday. My dream studio isn’t unattainable, but that doesn’t make it any less dreamy to me.
Where is all your time going? Why is all of your work being completed last minute this semester? I knew you could be a procrastinator, but this is ridiculous. Start using the planner you bought–don’t just write in it, actually look back at it, too! I know these online classes can be easy to forget, but that’s all the more reason to be organized (and, by the way, you did say you weren’t going to take any more online classes, so you knew what you were getting into). From now on make use of that blank calender on your wall, and that too-expensive planner you knew you needed. We’ve got a busy few semesters ahead of us, but don’t forget you always have Spring, Summer, and Winter Breaks!
Hey, everyone! Here are some photo updates on my sprouts. If you’re growing tomatoes, carrots, or radishes these photos can help you identify your sprouts (especially if, like me, you’re a little unorganized and some tiny weeds have invited themselves into your garden and you’re afraid you might confuse them with your sprouts and pull out the wrong seedlings!).
This is a small carrot sprout. When it’s a little bit younger than the one pictured here it will only have the two long, thin cotyledons (embryonic leaves that are not true leaves).
This is one of my Malakhitovaya Shkatulka tomato sprouts. It’s a Russian green tomato whose name means malachite box!
Here are two squished together Black Spanish radish sprouts. These are a week or two old, so I’ll include a picture of them from when they were a little younger.
Alright, so you know you’re becoming a gardening geek when you get excited about some crusty old leaves. This past weekend we did quite a bit of yard work (and we’re still not done!). While we were cutting and pulling massive amounts of vines off the house some big clumps of started falling on my boyfriend and me. At first they looked like big clumps of dirt, but that didn’t really make sense, and upon closer inspection we found that they were chunks of partially decomposed leaves from the vines! How exciting!
I don’t have a compost pile (because in my friends’ experiences they seem to attract roaches in Phoenix), so I just kind of crumbled these up into my garden as we found more and more chunks. According to Annie Spiegelman in Talking Dirt, composted leaves work as a great mulch, especially in summer and winter, because they insulate and provide nutrients (she also says it’s best to put a 1-inch layer around your plants and have a layer of wood chips on top). So I’m not doing this the best way I could, but I’m working with what I’ve got for now.
A late afternoon in spring has to be one of the best times of the day I could think of. It’s warm and cool enough to be outside, flowers are blooming, and all the fauna of Phoenix is out and about. I can sit in the front yard with a book and see little clouds of bugs floating in the light from the setting sun, filtered through the trees of my yard or through our stained glass windows. (It’s also a great time to take cool pictures). Soon enough I’ll smell my neighbors’ dinners being barbequed (and sometimes mine!). As night begins to fall I can look forward to one of the many outdoor activities spring has to offer like watching meteor showers, going to the drive-in, or checking out the First Friday Art Walk (I know, it’s all year) or the Mutant Pinata Show at Bragg’s Pie Factory, which I plan on submitting work to this March!
“The Rocky Horror Picture Show: As Seen on Glee”
Excuse me, what? Since when does Glee deserve to be the thing that makes a theatrical phenomenon known? Since when is Glee more important and well-known than The Rocky Horror Picture Show? I was absolutely flabbergasted when I saw the above tagline on a flyer for a Rocky Horror showing. Okay, okay, I know Glee is on TV and it’s a big deal with tons and tons of fans blah blah blah, but come on!! The Rocky Horror Picture Show has had devoted fans since it opened in 1973! It’s been showing in theatres for 39 years; nearly 4 decades, people!! Okay, maybe I’m biased because I’ve been watching it since I was 2 (hey, my mom was a fan in the 70s!), but I think my surprise and disgust is justified.
For all you Rocky Horror fans like me out there, here’s some cool trivia that you may not have known about that science fiction single-feature:
+The filming of the birth of Rocky occurred on October 30, 1974, the 81st birthday of Charles Atlas. The actors on set sang the “Charles Atlas Song” in his honor.
+In the original stage production Jonathan Adams (Dr. Everett Scott in the film) played The Narrator while Meatloaf played both Dr. Scott and Eddie.
+They Came From Denton High and The Rock Horroar Show were the first two titles Richard O’Brien used before titling it The Rocky Horror Show.
+The Royal Court’s 60-seat Theatre Upstairs was the first home of The Rocky Horror Show in June 1973. Because of the show’s popularity it was first moved to a converted movie theatre and then again to King’s Road Theatre (with 500 seats).
+After The Rocky Horror Picture Show’s opening in Austin, Texas, Lou Adler (producer) and Tim Curry were made honorary citizens of the city (complete with certificates) by the mayor who was sporting full Rocky Horror makeup and costume.
+When Twentieth Century-Fox president and chairman Dennis Stanfill saw the trailer for Rocky Horror he responded as such: “Remove those lewd, lascivious lips mouthing the words ‘Twentieth Century-Fox’ immediately!”
+The castle (now known as The Oakley Court Hotel) where some filming of the movie took place, was also used for Hammer Production’s The Horror of Dracula, The Curse of Frankenstein, and The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb. It was also a refuge for General Charles de Gaulle during WWII.
+The origin of the audience participation in The Rocky Horror Show is unknown; some believe it started with the midnight showing at New York’s Waverly Theater.
+Richard O’Brien said he saw The Rocky Horror Show as “something any ten-year-old could enjoy.”
Source: The Rocky Horror Picture Show Book by Bill Henkin.
The other day I finally found a use for some linocuts I made for a 2D design class! Not being a printmaker, I found myself lacking any of the necessary tools to print my awesome carvings, but I remembered that I had some leftover fabric paint or ink, I’m not sure, from my Fibers class. I grabbed the paint, a sponge, and some scrap fabric and went to work! It turns out I really liked the result (although, it’s a little messy looking):
More than ever, I find myself saying “when I was little” and referring to some romanticized version of the 90s. How one can romanticize the 90s I still don’t know; it was a pretty hideous time, and if it wasn’t the era of my childhood I wouldn’t be able to think of it fondly. I don’t want this to be a post about being a “90s Kid” and how great it is/was, which I didn’t even know was a thing until moments ago. Of course I’m biased, but I feel like it was a pretty good time to be a kid. I was the right age for the beginning of Pokémon, Harry Potter, and all of the classic Nickelodeon shows, plus the “Disney Renaissance.” And technology was still cruddy (and expensive) enough that I spent a lot of time playing outside, although I just named a lot of indoor activities. Also, there was still cultural residue from the 80s (which is my favorite era of the 20th century) so My Little Ponies, Labyrinth, and New Wave music are embedded in my treasured childhood memories. I have to add: I think the girls’ toys of the late 80s and early 90s were the pinkest and girliest toys ever made. So great!!
It does feel silly to talk about this when I’m only 20. I’m not old enough to reminisce, right? Or does it really matter? Either way, I know I’m comforted when I look back on the last decade of the 20th century, and I get excited when I find any remnant of it in a thrift store or at a yard sale. But like most backwards-glancing oldsters (haha), I find these discoveries are bittersweet; I’m reminded that with the ability to recognize an era is the realization that it has passed.
Just a short update on my garden: Last week, on the 27th, I noticed I have some new little sprouts! They are either Black Spanish Radishes or one of the Patriot’s Carrots. I’m sure I could look it up and find out, but that’d take the fun out of it.
On a less positive note… Nothing else has sprouted and it’s been about two weeks, so I’m worried they won’t grow! We’ll see…
*Update!: I cheated and googled, and those definitely are the sprouts of my Black Spanish Radishes.
Steps take you somewhere. One follows another until something’s changed. Right now I’m still figuring out which steps I need to take. It’s hard because I’m not sure where I want to end up or which steps will be the most beneficial while still being exciting. A few days ago I had a meeting with an ASU advisor, asking to change my major. She mapped out what my next 3 semesters would look like, exactly; I finally feel like I have some direction with school, and I know which steps to take to graduate. I have to say it’s pretty comforting. But I’m not completely satisfied just yet.
What steps should I take to make sure I’m progressing as an artist and as a productive member of society? Is this where setting goals comes into play, since “productive member of society” can vary from person to person? Does reaching a goal mean taking a step? Are steps the smaller goals one makes within a goal to achieve it? That sounds about right. So maybe in order to find out which steps I should take, I should investigate my goals and work backward? Well, that sounds like a step in the right direction to me!
If I could, I would be an explorer. That’s what I’ve always wanted to be, really. I’d like someone to pay me to travel all around the world and have exciting adventures (ideally, this would take place about 150 years ago), which I assumed I’d be writing about or recording in some way, or there’s really no reason to pay me. I’d submerge myself in the culture of whatever area I was in and learn everything I could, while collecting treasures and folk stories. I’d have run-ins with savage (just go with it) indigenous tribes, gypsies, disgruntled royalty, and abominable snowmen. When I’m not destroying vampires or removing voodoo curses, I’m in my Second Empire-style Victorian home creating art or tending to my heirloom garden. Sometimes I’ll work in my secret laboratory, doing who-knows-what. My coffee shop/boutique/gallery, unique jewelry designs, and freelance art are a nice additional income. Also, I’m famous.
I grew up in a historic house, built in 1914. It’s an English Revival Tudor house, but when I was little I thought it sort of looked like a haunted house, although they’re usually Victorian (at least in movies and books). I think my home, which would be commonplace in another city but is unique in Phoenix, has had a lot of influence on the person I am today. It’s easy to guess from this blog that I like monsters, and you probably won’t be surprised to hear that I like everything that the idea of monsters conjures up; everything spooky, ooky, and kooky (but I have to note: I really hate zombies), which may be because of my childhood home. Also, I think my old house instilled in me a love of the historic and history in general.
One of my passions is studying history, and I’m probably the only 20-year-old I know with a large personal library full of books on the subject. In fact, I’m probably one of the only people I know, my age, who has as many books as I do! Truly, I love learning about almost any subject. As this blog will demonstrate in the future, in addition to learning, I also spend a lot of time doing art!
I started taking art classes before I even started school. Of course, I continued learning throughout school, and I attended a high school that was heavily focused on the arts. Now I’m attending Arizona State University and majoring in fine art! I don’t really want my educational choices to completely define me, but I guess they do say a lot.
Honestly, I consider myself to be a delicate balance between a romantic and a realist. I feel like this is how I view everything in my life and the world in general. If I could travel the world by gypsy vardo and pirate ship, I would, but that’d be pretty dangerous, and I don’t think pirates or gypsies take kindly to strangers. One of my favorite places I’ve ever been is New Orleans, and I love the beauty of the St. Louis Cathedral as much as the raggedy pigeons in Pirate’s Ally. Maybe I’m just some sort of optimist? I don’t know. I don’t even remember what I’m trying to get at, and if I have to spend this much time explaining myself, it makes it seem like my personality won’t just show through my blog posts and portfolio. I’ll just stop for now, and we’ll see if I live up to my own descriptions.
Last Saturday (the 14th) and Sunday (15th) I planted a variety of exciting heirloom plants! I purchased some seeds from a great Etsy shop, I have to admit, I went a little crazy (if one can be crazy while buying seeds), and ordered some things that I don’t even normally like to eat. Anywho, last weekend I planted Black Spanish Radishes, a blend of Patriot’s Carrots, Listada de Gandia Eggplant, Rosemary, a blend of Basil, and some green, Russian Malakhitovaya Shkatulka Tomatoes (because I’m 3rd generation and I wanted to give a tip of the hat to the old country haha). I also ordered some seeds to plant later: Bloody Butcher Corn, Royal Burgundy Beans, and Merlin’s Magic Cauliflower.
I live in Phoenix, so I planted everything directly into the soil of my raised beds instead of starting them inside. Also, I have to admit I squished things together a bit; they only have about half as much space between them as they’re supposed to. I still have hope though, and I’ve been checking for sprouts every day! We’ll see how it goes!
Over the past summer I started an heirloom garden in a couple of homemade raised garden beds. I grew Cinderella’s Carriage (or Rouge vif d’Etampes) pumpkins and Moon and Stars watermelons.
The pumpkins did pretty well! Unfortunately, the watermelon vines only yielded two small watermelons (one of which I didn’t even know about!). Of course, the watermelons may have had a chance to grow larger, but I accidentally broke the fruit off the vine.
Overall, I’m happy with the results. I’ve never tried vegetable gardening before, but I think it turned out pretty well!