Archive for April, 2007

Critique Me!

April 24, 2007

F.Y.I.- You may or may not be aware that I maintain an art-only blog where I post sketches, ideas, and finished pieces, and invite feedback and critiques from everyone who’d like to offer suggestions. I just posted a few random sketches from my sketchbook, so stop by Slumberland By Day to check them out. [I’ve added a permanent link to my art blog on my link list on the right, under Critique My Art. ]

That is all.


Here Comes The Sun

April 23, 2007

Little darling, the smiles returning to the faces
Little darling, it seems like years since it’s been here
Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
and I say it’s all right

Sun, sun, sun, here it comes…

Oh my star! (the big bright star in the sky, that is…) This has been THE BEST weather-weekend in what seems like an eternity. The sun has returned to its happy place in the sky, bringing with it an electric energy surge of all that is good and right with the world. Ahhhhhh. Deep breath of fresh, warm air. I feel filled up with sunshine such to the point that I almost can’t refrain from smiling incessantly. And that summeresque smell! The warm windy air with a tinge of dirt and flowers and fresh cut grass. It’s breathtaking.

I will never fail to be amazed with the direct connection between weather and mood. I feel like anything is possible right now. I feel so positive and optimistic about the future. I no longer feel the repression of winter, the cold, dead, dreary and depressing feeling of loneliness and solitude. It is all gone.
But, I suppose the sun can’t take all the credit.

This weekend was particularly uplifting for a variety of reasons. To begin with, I went to Providence because the art school was closed this week for April break so I didn’t have to work. Thus I journeyed to see Adam. This of course, is usually enough to make me happy. But this weekend was different. This was a special sort of quality time that further and undoubtedly cemented our ridiculous compatibility. By that I mean that it is overwhelming how well we work together. How perfect we are for one another. And how wonderful and comforting and scary that fact is. Scary only because it encourages the non-Buddhist quality of attachment and desire for maintaining the status quo. And by that I mean I love how things are and don’t want them to change. Ever.

But I know that we will never cease to be compatible. It is our natures that compliment each other. And that will not change. So enough of that. I shall continue to relish in the present state of all things and leave the worrying to someone who hasn’t found their other half.

Back to my narration of the weekend.

So I went to see Adam on Friday evening. We decided to journey over to the mall to eat and pick up some additional pokemon cards (oh boy). It was perfect walking weather so we headed over there on foot, reliving our tradition from last year. We browsed Borders, then stopped into Newbury Comics for the cards, then ate some subway at the food court. As we were leaving that area, we spotted Greg who was chatting with Evan. Somehow RISD kids always manage to find each other at the mall. It was awesome having an unexpected little chat. It’s the little things like that that I miss after being away from school. You begin to feel so isolated that any brief interaction with friends is most welcome indeed. Anyway, the mall was closing so Adam and I walked back to his house. We played some pokemon of course, and hung out in his room for the rest of the evening.

Saturday was a very full day. We put both of our art files onto a cd with the intention of taking it to CVS to print them out as 8×10’s but they were like $7 a print so we hastily abandoned that idea. We grabbed some Dunkin Donuts and then walked down to the RISD student art sale. We browsed through it rather quickly, and I bought a little something for Brittany’s birthday. I ran into Cara (who presently works at Houghton Mifflin in Boston) and hadn’t seen her in a year, so it was nice that we bumped into each other. After that Adam and I walked downtown to Concept Link to see what sort of prints we could get there. But as it turned out the print quality was not much better than the ISB lab, and cost twice as much. So we forgot that idea and I convinced him to just print his portfolio in the ISB lab instead. So we walked back, stopped in the RISD store to get him a black 8×10 plastic portfolio, but they didn’t have them so we decided to try Jerry’s Artarama downtown, but had to run back to his room first to call to make sure they had them in stock. They did, so we drove over. As I was walking around in the store, I walked past an aisle and spotted Reid who I hadn’t seen in a year. Apparently he lives in P-town and works at Jerry’s. So that was another cute unexpected visit. We got we we needed and then headed back to campus.

Then we went over to the ISB so Adam could scan and print his work for his portfolio. I was pretty insistent that he let me help him do this, because I figured I was there and didn’t have much to do so I might as well do what I could to relieve some of his stress (Portfolio Review Day is Wednesday and next week is his senior show). So I scanned and color-corrected some stuff for him and then proceeded to get all his portfolio files prepared and printed, while he worked on preparing for his Animal Farm painting for Cover To Cover. We worked as a team all day, he was very open to my suggestions and it made me feel so good to be helpful. Actually, I can’t tell you how much it meant to me. I honestly feel that one of my favorite Adam qualities is his willingness to accept help when he needs it, without ever asking for it. He makes me feel important and needed and smart and doesn’t resent me for trying to help him with anything and everything. And he’s always appreciative. I admire him so much for that…..
Oh, I love being in love. I love loving this boy. I love that he loves me back. I love needing someone who also needs me. And I can’t wait until I can spend everyday proving how much we are meant to be together…

Ok, ok. Enough mush. Sorry folks.

Anyway, we were in the lab doing all that for most of the evening. Around 9:30 we finished and walked up to Thayer for some deliciously delicious burritos, and went back to his room for the night. Then I made him forget I was there so he would keep working while I took a mini nap on his bed. By the time he was done it was pretty late so we called it a night.

On Sunday there was much more work to be done. But first we attempted to go to the met for a very late breakfast but there was a massive amount of non-risd people in there so we forgot that and forced our famished bodies downtown in search of sustenance,  and ended up in Tim Horton’s as that was the only place open. Then it was back to the ISB. Adam had only that day to start and finish his painting for class, so while he did his image searching and printing I cut out all of his prints and arranged them in his portfolio. When I was done with that I went to the lab where he was working on his digital sketch, and proceeded to make suggestions here and there as I checked email and what not. Then we grabbed some dinner at the met and headed back to the ISB so he could actually start painting. While he worked, I continued the super time consuming hand-labeling of envelopes for my art sample mailing. It was really great because for most of the time Mike, Marrissa, and Cara were around, and it was fun working and chatting and laughing with them. I also finally got to meet and experience the infamous Charlie, (Adam’s man-crush…haha), first-hand. I can definitely understand why Adam gets such a kick out of him.  So yeah, awesome time spent bonding with some of Adam’s studio crew. It was a very, very late night in studio, as Adam didn’t finish working until sometime after 3. Insanely fatigued, we went home for the night and fell asleep sometime around 4:30.

Today was less eventful, I slept as late as I could, got up, and left.  I also got a parking ticket. Because of course there’s not one damn street in the whole city with more than 2 hour parking. F that shit, man. I can’t wait to be done with not having a place to park during the weekdays…..grrrr….Then I got home, had a nice chat with Michelle (WHO WILL BE HERE IN LESS THAN ONE WEEK…HOLY HELL!!!!!! EEEEE!), spoke with Adam who had a FANTABULOUS crit on his Animal Farm painting (well deserved!), and then I hopped in the tub, got re-dressed, and taught the 4 o’clock open studio by myself, which was a lot of fun.
This week should be another great one. Fabulous weather+work+painting for myself=yay! And Saturday after work I’m headed back to Providence so I can see Adam and pick up Michelle on Monday and bring her back to Manchester for the week. It’s going to be the best. I can’t wait.

P.S. Sorry I write so much about things that probably bore you to tears. But I don’t care because I write this for me and my memory. It’s my archive of my life and I want to remember EVERYTHINK.


April 16, 2007

Phew. What a great few days. Let’s recount the relaxation that has transpired since Wednesday and sent my happy level over 9000. NINE THOUSAAAAANDD!

Wednesday: Adam’s 22nd Birthday!!
Yay! 22 years on the planet! Finally we are both the same numeric age. Not that the fact that I’m older than him bothers me at all. I just like that we can say we are the same age for a few months out of the year. (No, it’s not the result of my guilt for having robbed the cradle… We’re less than seven months apart!!! I swear!)

Anyhoodle, I got myself packed and headed to Providence Wednesday afternoon, arriving a bit before 3. I gave Adam the last of his birthday gifts (because clothes, though necessary, make for boring presents). I got him the Scott Gustavson illustrated Peter Pan, and a little something from his past I thought he’d not only enjoy but hopefully also love me more for….do I dare say what? Oh….I guess I’ll fess up….Here goes….

I got him two decks of Pokemon cards…. (eeep!) Two decks so that he could teach me to play, too.
Oh, the things we do for love.

He was more than delighted about said gift, and we spent some time playing before meeting up with his mom for a delicious birthday dinner at The Cheesecake Factory. The best part of that was when she gave him a stuffed monkey. Yep, a monkey of all creatures. But I will say it is THE SOFTEST little monkey I have ever had the privilege to pet. After dinner Adam and I drove my car over to the shopping center’s lot to park it, walked back to his place, and hung out for the rest of the evening. And yes, it probably involved some pokemon playing. We topped off the night with a Met run and some oreo cookies. Mmmmm. A quiet birthday, but an enjoyable one.

Adam didn’t have class but he did have a couple meetings to run to so he did his thing in the morning while I showered and got ready by the time he got back. We went up to Dunkin’ Donuts for lunch and then again, hung out at his place during most of the day. He had another meeting that afternoon to run to, but after that we walked back to my car to check on it and to take it to the grocery store to pick up some snacks and stuff for Saturday. After the grocery store we got dinner at Boston Market, because Adam had apparently never had it before and I thought that was crazy. (Leave it to me to introduce the boy to a fast food chain.) We stuffed ourselves full of chicken/stuffing/mashed potatoes/cornbread until our faces contorted in grimaces of pain, and then rolled our gorged bodies back to his house. (I think you can sense the recurring theme of walking, eating, walking, hanging out….and pokemon-playing. Because that’s basically how it went.)

Adam had class all day Friday, but we had breakfast together and then he left and I fell back asleep until 1, waking up and feeling gross for having given into the overwhelming tiredness when I should have done something productive instead. But regardless I did my own thing while he was in class, and that basically entailed me showering, getting dressed, checking my internet crap incessantly, and playing a Pokemon rom on his computer all day long. (What have I become?!?!?!?)
Adam got back around 7 at which time we went and got burritos and chatted about the day. That night was a quiet one as well, it’s safe to assume lots of snuggly time probably took place.

Saturday was the best. At 1, Adam’s boy crew arrived which consisted of Alex, Jon, his girlfriend Amanda, Dustin, and Pete. We all sat around the living room talking about random stuff (the probability debate was particularly engrossing), ate tasty treats, and enjoyed each other’s company. Everyone was really awesome and it was great to see Alex, Dustin and Jon again. Just a really nice bunch. And funny. At one point there was definitely some funny youtube video action involving inert balls and a power level of 9000, but I’ll leave it at that. They all left at around 4:30, which was exactly the same time that crew #2 arrived, which consisted of Casey, Amanda, and Kyler. Again, I had a blast hanging out with them. I adore Adam’s friends, as they should very well know by now. It’s amazing that we all get along so well and have such similar interests and humor sensibilities. I’ve never really met friends of friends who I so much wanted to be my friends as well. But I suppose it makes sense, seeing as how I love Adam, and they love Adam. Of course we’re going to get along famously! But anyway, cheers to Casey and Amanda and Kyler for being so sweet and awesome.
We all walked up to Thayer street to get some pizza at Antonio’s and ice cream at Ben & Jerry’s. Note to self: the regular size cup, while seemingly on the small size, is MORE than enough ice cream to fill an already pizza-filled stomach, and send it hurtling over the edge of gluttony. I think I’ll stick to the small cup next time. After Thayer we said goodbye to crew2. Hopefully we’ll be able to get together again before everyone goes across the world with their exciting lives abroad.

For the rest of the night Adam and I hung out in his room, spending a good chunk of time looking at Russian propaganda posters online for inspiration for his next project. We also designed his two postcards and ordered them so they’d be here in time for his show. And that was that. No pokemon-playing, surprisingly…

I left Providence after partaking in a tasty Met breakfast with Adamantium. Twas roundabout 11:30 this morning when we cutely parted ways on the corner of Angell and Congdon. Yet it was not so much as sad a goodbye as in weeks previous, as I plan on returning next Friday night. Thus I got into my vehicle and drove home in the rain, singing to some Shins and Razorlight as I did so. Upon returning home to my room I discovered my replacement ink cartridge had arrived so I set to work printing some art samples, and putting some time into readying my little packet of sample stuff to send to publishers. This my friends, sadly took all day. But I suppose a cold, windy and rainy day such as this is happily spent in front of a computer. Apart from that, I browsed blogs over on, found some really inspiring collage work that makes me want to make cute little pictures on bits and scraps of found papers….  I also ran out to Kohl’s with my sister, and ended up splurging on some surprisingly cute shirts and black ballet-esque flats. Oops. So much for not spending monies I don’t have.

And this week looks pretty good from here on in. The art school’s closed for April break so I’ll have the run of the place. I’m bringing my mom over there so she can use the pottery wheel, and I’ve got 8 hours of work to put in on the mosaic butterfly before Friday. Should be a very nice week indeed…

Love to all those who know I love them, and love to those who should.

Just Jack

April 5, 2007

Jack & The Beanstalk

Well, here it is. My vision of Jack, finished at last. No, not necessarily my best piece to date, but as far as color goes, I think I’m making some decent progress. I’m really trying to be conscious of stylization and lighting, and hopefully I’ll keep improving in that respect. I’m trying to keep myself busy by doing these portfolio pieces…so on to the next one I suppose. Any feedback is most welcome!

Here Today

April 1, 2007

Well, it was a strange week. Much happy, some terribly sad.

But the seven days spent with Adam were lovely as always. So let’s begin there.
I picked him up last Saturday after work. That night we had a little dinner party for all the March babies including my dad, Amber and Jon, and my Nana. On Sunday Adam and I stopped over to visit with Rachael before doing a bit of shopping/returns at Old Navy. It was a cute little visit, brief as it was.

Much of the first few days of the week consisted of hanging around the house, probably in my room, me doing stuff (reading, playing on the computer, etc) while Adam did his homework. While we may not have *done* all that much entertaining stuff, we stayed productive the majority of the time. And even though it was spring break, we all know that a RISD spring break is in fact no break at all, just an opportunity to continue working in a setting other than studio, or your own bedroom. So Adam had work to get done during his stay. I myself taught my classes Monday and Tuesday afternoon, but originally I was going to be working more than I actually did… And all due to a certain phone call received early Wednesday morning.

I was supposed to work at Picture People Wednesday night but at 8:30 that morning my cell phone rang, and I of course being still very much asleep at that time, let my voice mail get it. I listened to the message about an hour or so later. It turned out to be a call from the District Manager of Picture People informing me that she had closed the store and that I would no longer be employed there as of that day. As you can imagine I was quite surprised by such a message! Never had it been mentioned that the store was in jeopardy of closing nor my job in danger of being taken from me. But alas! I just laughed to myself, bewildered. Honestly, how absolutely ridiculous and unprofessional of them!

I don’t care that I am out of my stupid little part-time job, but it just sucks because I actually enjoyed it! The babies were so cute, and taking photographic portraits was becoming my forté. But I guess now it’s on to bigger and better things. If I can find them, that is. The strangest part was just how quickly my course of action changed. Not that I wanted to stay there for any great length of time, but at least it offered some sort of cushion. The zen part of me is accepting it just fine. Easy come easy go. Here today, gone tomorrow. I just didn’t know tomorrow was today.

But, needless to say that left me with ample time to spend with Adam. On Wednesday I worked on my resumé and updating my site, and then watched LOST. A strange sort of filler episode if you ask me. That was followed by our weekly discussion of the show and all the things we still don’t know about everything. But after LOST the night went downhill very quickly.

Amber called, crying hysterically because her cat, Bella wasn’t breathing properly, and she was rushing back to Manchester from Colchester, headed to the veterinary clinic where one of the doctors was also rushing over to meet her. My mom left to be with her as well, but as fast they all drove, it was in vain. Bella passed away before they reached the clinic, while still in her carrier in the front seat of the car. Amber was absolutely devastated, and I for her. Anabel was her baby. Her furry little baby who loved no one else but her for six years. It is so painful to lose a pet, but she was more than a pet to my sister. It was a very sad night at my house. Amber stayed over and we did what we could to comfort her, but I can’t imagine her pain. We had no idea that Bella’s health had declined such to the point where all day she had acted perfectly fine, behaving as normal, only to within an hour start breathing irregularly and die from the lymphomic mass in her chest that had caused her lungs to fill with fluid, and essentially drown her.

God, things change so quickly. And there’s absolutely nothing we can do to prevent it sometimes. You can’t foresee tragedy, and even if you could, you simply can not prepare for it. You just have to get through it as it happens.

Amber stayed for most of the day on Thursday, and we all made a short trip over to my Nana’s to visit her on her birthday.
Then we went back to my house and got back to work for a bit.

Later that night, Adam and I realized we hadn’t really done anything all week, nor had we really even left the house. So we decided to go see 300. And wow. It was absolutely awesome. Such a visually stimulating film. Highly entertaining, smart, beautifully designed, choreographed, filmed, composed, stylized, energetic. Man, we left there so pumped. Everything about it was cool. And that’s truly saying something when all the characters are running around wearing virtually nothing but leather underwear. I also give a great deal of credit to the acting and dialog, because a movie so epic and over the top as this can so easily become the lamest thing you’ve ever seen. But throughout, it was just simply cool. A very satisfying and inspiring experience. Even the music was gorgeous. Chilling at parts. And the colors! Don’t even get me started!

Anyway. It was awesome.

Friday Adam worked on his design for a mental health poster design contest, wherein the winning selection receives something like a $3000 prize. He enlisted me as a consultant and we ended up sort of working together towards the final product. It would be so amazing if he were to win. So best of luck to him and his clever concept, and may he become $3000 richer very soon.

Apart from that we spent some time hanging out with Brittany and Kaitlyn. Friday night I actually got some painting in, and worked on my Jack and The Beanstalk illustration while he did computer stuff. I have to say it was really cute working together in my little studio space, and if it’s any indication of what’s to come, I look forward to it with great anticipation. The two of us, working side by side creatively… both able to support and critique one another. We’ll be quite a duo, me thinks.

Today we got a somewhat decent start and made our way over to West Hartford to visit Jerry’s Artarama, Borders, and to pick up a Big Cookie from Mrs. Field’s as a favor to Amber. We got back, packed up, and I dropped him off with his mom this afternoon. And then I headed back to my life.

The life where I am very unemployed and even more confused as to where to go next.

Bigger and better things. I hope.

May you find rest in the peace of the beyond.