Sunday, November 19, 2017

More Printing, a Bunny, and a Spotted Lamb

"It's so dark right now, I can't see any light around me."
"That's because the light is coming from you. You can't see it but everyone else can."  --Lang Leav
Sunday again. I had a week where lots of things I didn't expect to happen, happened. And I find myself standing here blinking, wondering how I got here. But here I am.

We had last Monday off in lieu of Remembrance Day, and I took the opportunity to make my way down to the print studio to work on an experiment that has been brewing in my brain since I did the woodblock printing workshop a few weeks ago.

I loved the results from the workshop so much that I wondered what it would look like with a coloured background. Since then, I've been playing around with washes of watercolour paint on medium weight watercolour paper. You're supposed to stretch your paper before you paint on it, but each time I did I only ended up with a mess, so I didn't bother with it for my final versions. Besides, I've spent a whole life doing things the "right way," thinking I'd somehow get rewarded. Turns out, it wore me out as I watched other people who skipped the rules all getting ahead.

I went into the studio with these sheets. You can't really tell from the photos, but the paints I used are pearlescent, so each sheet has a pearly sheen to them when you stand in the right light:

There, I met two women I'd never met before, but who were so welcoming and happy to see me that they helped me test out my idea on some scrap newsprint and gave me pointers for how to ink my block better. I ended up walking out with these:

I got a few accidental ink smudges, and they're positioned both landscape and portrait because I was a bit flustered with having the keep one of the more experienced printers waiting. She was extremely helpful to me, probably partially to get me moving faster, but also because she was so kind. I'm not sure yet what I'm going to do with them. Right now, I'm just enjoying looking at them:

It was my birthday on Friday. My parents sent me these beautiful flowers the night before:

We went to Victoria this weekend for a short getaway. We got lucky and got a dry weekend, possibly the only dry one we'll get for a while:

We met with a friend for a lovely dinner, and then the next day, we did a lot of walking, had a nice lunch, and looked around at some shops. That afternoon, we walked down to an open house at a gallery called arc.hive. There, we met lots of interesting artists showing off their workspaces and their current projects. Whenever I go to these things, someone always asks if I'm an artist, to which I never know what to say. This time, someone asked me, "Are you a maker?" and all of a sudden, I felt very confident about saying, "Yes, I am."

Because yes: I make things. And I make them not because I need them or want them. I just have to make things because I must.

But the real reason I went to the gallery was to pick up this box:

... to take this little guy home:

He's one of a litter of five made by a wonderful local sculptor and illustrator named Karina Kalvaitis. The creatures she makes speak to my soul... when I look at them, I get the same feeling I get when I see shelter animals: I want to give them all homes.

I think his name is going to be Remiel, after the archangel: Angel of Visions, the Angel of Hope, and the one you are to call if you are depressed... because sometimes, you need reassurance that things are going to get better:

He's one of her Secret Nest Animals, a species called a Nocturnal Spotted Lamb. I like lambs, and I like him. And he has a look on his face I've felt often on my own:

And he also came with his own Certificate of Authenticity, which completes the wonderful-ness:

Meanwhile, I am still knitting away. I have a hat in progress, which as of yesterday has been ripped out three times while I get the gauge and cast on sorted out. In between all of this, I whipped up this little bunny for my friend's son who also had a birthday last week:

He's made from one of those patterns where you knit a square and then use some clever stitching to fashion various animals:

But I'm most impressed with the pom-pom I made for his tail. I've never been much good at them, so I hope it lasts:

And well, that's all I have to say today. Have a good week.


thecrazysheeplady said...

I LOVE your block prints!

AdrieneJ said...

I thought you might. :)