So, the Adobe Bullshit TM really is all its cracked up to be – how annoying! Everything I have been struggling to do for years with outdated programs, apps, and work arounds is now so stupidly simple to accomplish. If I wasn’t so giddy I might be really pissed off. Surrender and be happy? That doesn’t sound right at all.
But here we are 3 weeks later, and a new website has been built in Adobe Portfolio*, Squarespace cancelled, and I spend my days working happily in Photoshop and Illustrator learning all the ins and outs and shortcuts that get shit done. Stupid programs that work.
So, I have nothing to bitch about. Why am I even here?! I’m just listening to some Bauhaus and waiting for Erin to let me rat up her hair.
*the biggest stumbling block in creating the new website was the eternal problem of how to organize the galleries. UGH! Still not happy with it.
Well, it has been 1 year and 2 days since my last confession. I am finally creating art again and that has led me back to the blog. The path from there to here was not peaceful or intended – it was more off a twisted ankle leads to rolling down a steep and rock-strewn hill and then crash landing in WordPress with multiple contusions and a bad attitude.
I started watching some Skillshare classes again last month, and that has reignited my creative mojo – thank the Maker! It feels so good to be creating again after almost a full year of making no art at all. Covid and all that goes with it has definitely done a number on me. So I’ve been making illustrations on my computer in Affinity Designer and Photo because fuck you Adobe and your damn subscriptions! and that has been fun.
But then I hit some Affinity snags while making this piece-
Affinity Designer has no Offset Path. Why??! And then yesterday I wanted to create a half tone and all hell broke loose! You can’t seem to make a gradient half tone without unwanted artifacts on the edges! The solutions offered in the forums were just crap Band-Aids to the bigger problem. I was already annoyed with having to constantly adapt the simple Photoshop or Illustrator steps to work in the Affinity programs and apparently yesterday broke me.
I went to the Adobe website.
Now I have been mad at Adobe since they started this whole subscription game. Just let me buy your damn program and be done with it until I want to upgrade! I’ve limped along with my precious Lightroom3 and who knows how old a version of Photoshop that I had on my old computer for years now. And when I couldn’t get Photoshop to work on my new machine, I downloaded GIMP and then searched out new alternatives. I wasn’t going to get sucked into the Adobe machine!!! Yet here I am today, seething as I hoist the white flag and don the shackles of a Creative Cloud subscription.
So how does all of yesterday’s ragey-foot-stomping-temper-tantrum-I-hate-Adobe!-drama bring me to the zombie blog today?? Well, apparently Adobe Portfolio (it claims to make pretty portfolio websites) is included with any CC subscription, and my annual Squarespace fee is due in a couple days. Why pay for additional (and expensive) website hosting on top of the Adobe Bullshit (Bullshit is much easier to type than Creative Cloud Subscription and soothes me so that is how we will refer to it going forward thank you very much). Let’s try to save a couple hundred bucks a year right?! Well that sounds good on paper, I don’t use Squarespace’s store features as I have a Big Cartel account so no problem loosing that, but Portfolio doesn’t have blog capabilities. Okay, since I was already down the rabbit hole, I exported all the blog posts from my Squarespace website and imported them into my old WordPress elfini blog. Ta-da! Now all the posts are together again and I can just add a nice link to the blog in the nav menu of a new Adobe Portfolio website and Bob’s your uncle and all that jazz. But that of course called for a blog refresh – removing old outdated widgets and installing a nice new theme – and apparently this morning I have a lot to say about all of this! So here we are. I’m bringing blogging back.
And we all know that writing a blog post is my favorite form of procrastination. When I finish here, I have to actual hit that purchase button for the Adobe Bullshit and then build a new website so I can let the Squarespace subscription go before it renews in 3 days. I just wanted to create a damn halftone. My brain sucks.
My last post was a little over a year ago. The end of May with lots of fun things to look forward to in June 2019. I have fuzzy memories of a big down time after my solo show, but then what? I’m sure there were lots of things that happened during the 2nd half of 2019, but damn if I can remember any of them. I can’t recall much of anything from before the complete clusterfuck that has been the last 3 months. Maybe clusterfuck is the wrong word. Maybe not.
The beginning of 2020 started out fine – joined a gym and was doing yoga again. We went to San Diego for a long weekend in February. We had plans for a few more trips this year already booked. Then March hit and things started to go sideways. Coronavirus hit the news. March 16th the schools were closed. Then everything was closed. Months of sheltering in place. Then George Floyd was murdered. holy fuck. Throw some rioting and looting into the protests and a lot of bad decision making from the top and here we are. The world is on fire and rightly so. I’m reading, listening, learning how I can do better. Trying to stay in the moment, but also not.
I’ve watched myself pushing things away, distracting myself, trying not to be overwhelmed by it all. Because there have been days…
So I’ve been moving from one brain-distracting project to the next. The first couple weeks after the schools closed, we were on top of things. Erin and I were painting, going for walks and doing her PE assignments together. Trying to keep things “normal”, but normal was gone. In April I found my birth father (he died just last year) and then spent weeks learning everything I could and building a huge new family tree! A most excellent distraction. Then we started working in the yard again and my plant obsession kicked up a gear. A potting bench was ordered and I started thinking about gardens. But first a week focused on putting together a gallery wall in the foyer (ha! sounds so snooty). Then after much planning, Chris built me an elevated garden bed and voilà! I have a garden growing outside my studio window. And a morning dove is sitting on her nest in the tree next to it. I now spend my mornings outside watering and walking around the yard – a much nicer way to start the day than hopping on the computer first thing to read about the latest horror. Although today the Supreme Court ruled that federal anti-discrimination laws protect gay and transgender employees – “Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination “because of sex,” includes LGBTQ employees.” and that is some much needed good news in all this madness.
So, now what? I’ve started making art again and am going to start listing prints for sale. That outta keep me busy for a few days. Not sure when I’ll pick up an actual paintbrush, but at some point all my little defenses are gonna break and I’ll have to crank up the volume and throw some paint around. I can’t wait to see what comes of that! #haveshinkonspeeddial
I finally stopped with the watercolors a couple weeks ago and started the oh so glamorous process of matting and framing all the pieces for my upcoming solo show. I’ve mentioned the show right? Yes, well I am kicking to-do list ass up in here, up in here.
Earworm. You’re welcome.
As you can see, I finally decided on a title – History of Life. After created several lists of potential titles and driving myself crazy, I settled on an evolutionary science term cause I’m nerdy like that and the show is including work spanning the last 3 years. When looked at chronologically, I can see the path I’ve been on and how my work has shifted and evolved over this time. The oldest of the paintings were done right before my last visit with my dad in June 2016. He passed away later that year. A shift. Color left and I painted only in black and white. Then I wasn’t painting at all. Embroidery, weaving prints, a dive back into printmaking, sewing, all while slowly moving through grief and depression. A random doodle while on hold and – shift – drawing. All the pens! Markers! Digital and analog. I participated in inktober and drew everyday. Then came the holidays, and surgeries, I left the pens behind and started drawing with the ink dropper. And one morning watercolors! And here we are, armed with windex and a mat cutter. Shift, and shift.
I started framing the drawings first and was immediately rewarded with a rush of happiness – things just look so damn good matted and framed!
I was framing a bit every morning and they were starting to stack up. Each new batch prompting a photo and a happy dance. I can’t wait to see all this work hung on walls!
And now that the framing is done, I’ve shifted again into the last phase of show prep mode. Yesterday I worked on the postcard. I still need to wire and label the the frames, come up with prices and titles, and … what else??
Well I finished my video game. There may have been tears – but you have no proof, so move along! There was a huge twist, a couple shocking and painful betrayals, and then an amazing ending that leaves you chomping at the bit for the next installment of the game! A quick google search assured me that it is in the works, although I didn’t watch the recently released trailer because there is only so much a girl can handle in one afternoon!
Of course I’ve since started the game over with a new character who will now make all the opposite big decisions to see what happens. It is strange how even the most off-handed comments from the companions takes on new meaning now…
But you didn’t come here for talk of video games -or did you? More geek less art? What about when worlds collide??
Fine. Art. ha!
I have a solo show in June at the Sacramento Poetry Center. Ta-da! ::hides paper bag I’ve been breathing into behind back::
I keep waking up with my brain running around in circles trying to decide on a show title. oh my god. my brain is so annoying! So I invited Bethanie (who’s fault this is, feel free to join me in shooting her dirty looks) over the other night to discuss details and what not. I had planned on showing all my recent drawing (and now the watercolors), but the Sac Poetry Center is a pretty big space and she suggested I hang some paintings too. I’m not sure that helped my head. So, now it’s not just the drawings but all the things! I woke up this morning thinking all the thoughts!! The madness continues. So, I’ve got some work to do. And most of it revolves around not stressing myself the fuck out for shits and giggles. Cause that’s kinda what I do. Crap! What if she wants an artist statement??!!
Practical to-do list: purchase a lot of mats and frames. Stain sides of newest paintings. Buy more paper bags.
June 8th will be the 2nd Saturday reception. I’ll get more details up soon, but mark your calendars and come out and see the work in person – always so much better than the photos on little screens. You can see me too. We’ll talk nerdy things and it won’t be awkward at all. ::thud::