Pacing myself. I thought when I started this I wouldn’t care how many pieces I made, then I figured fifty would be a fine number. As it became clear that I was averaging one a day, even if that’s not exactly when I finished them, I decided to shoot for 100 pieces.
Day 100: April 30
I thought I’d bring this project to a close the same way I opened it: with a self portrait. 100 pieces. 100 Days. A road trip across the country home. A pandemic. Strange times. Bittersweet.
The end is nigh! Nigh! I’m so excited. It’s like a light went on. I’m seeing possibilities on blank paper today.
Day 86: April 16
Why didn’t I find paint circles sooner in this process? Decided to use extra paint left over in a circle and it went down a new rabbit hole.
Day 87: April 17
lines. If I learned nothing else, I learned to sooth myself by making lines and letting my headspace fall away. That lesson I do not want to lose. When I’m stuck. I can just make lines until I unstick. And the exercise rarely fails. It’s soothing and loosens my creativity.
Day 88: April 18
I’m stuck on my painting so I’m using the 100 Day to work out a problem. That’s a new development.
Day 89: April 19
Exploring whatever I feel at this point. Trying not to overthink.
Day 90: April 20
Not exactly productive. Feeling stuck at the same stage on all pieces. Meanwhile I’m completely engrossed in stripping a canvas for reuse.
Started three new pieces last night playing with plant textures. Added paint today. Flattening the collected plant material in my sketchbook helped. Still awful to work with.
Day 65: March 26
I can work freely now that I am home. First I had to make a trip through the snow to the camper each time I needed something. But mostly I don’t feel like it. I start and stop. All day. Starts and stops. And staring. I’m exhausted from the drive across the country. I’m emotionally exhausted from the this world turned upside-down. I’ve begun a new blog writing ritual to get me through without the travel writing.
Day 66: March 27
Art work is the last thing I feel like doing. I feel like I’m resting on the work that came before and I think that’s ok right now. I’m just showing up for now.
Day 67: March 28
Tossed some paint on a piece I wasn’t going to. Glad I did. Started a second canvas based on the works I’ve done in the 100 Day Project.
Day 68: March 29
I lost a day somewhere. I don’t know how. I thought this was (today) March 30.
Day 69: March 30
Creative block this morning. Not even doing lines helped. Maybe later. The canvasses go better.
No sooner had I put pen to paper than we were informed the California State Park we were staying at for the night was closing because of the corona virus outbreak. Off we go. Maybe later I’ll be able to get last week’s post together.
Day 58: March 19
If nothing else then just make lines and the rest will follow later. Even if I barely make one piece this week of lines, little by little every day. How life can crash in. We are traveling long days, much longer than we ever did before. We may slow down here, but home is the goal.
Day 59: March 20
I was able to put a little paint where it was needed on various pieces last night. Then worked on lines on a piece this morning. We were still in California when the new state-wide shelter-in-place order went through. Moving east. Still working on art through this.
Day 60: March 21
Tired. If you wonder where the progress photos went, I killed the camera on my phone. One too many drops. Photos will have to wait until the end of the week batch. It’s too much of a hassle to do it daily. Finished a textured piece last night. Working on others this morning. Started collecting more plant stuff on the road and, after learning my lesson, they are flattening in my sketchbook. Some of these earlier pieces are being held down by linen strips because they are so unruly.
Day 61: March 22
I did something this morning. But that was ages ago and a state of the union away. I showed up. Goodnight.
Day 62: March 23
Coffee. Pen. Paper. Morning light. Road.
Day 63: March 24
I’m here, minimally. But every little bit adds to the whole. Will attempt to carve out time to document works today. We. Will. See.
A little color study. Not the sexiest work, but the best way to systematically understand the colors. And of course I had way too much paint left over… so more of those spare paint types of pieces will probably be in the works.
Day 51: March 12
I also worked yesterday on some texture studies. Which I continued this morning. What a frustrating challenge to get things to stay in place. Today I white washed the pieces to make the textures pop out. To be continued.
Day 52: March 13
Lines. Lines. More lines. Struggling to find some new insightful thoughts to regurgitate here.
Day 53: March 14
Is this mid-project exhaustion? 53 is so many days.
Day 54: March 15
I about ruined a piece this morning. Added spare paint to it to cover areas I didn’t like. Then it got out of control. So I washed it all off. I like the way the lines look worn now from being under water.
Day 55: March 16
In the spirit of exploring textures and with the inability to find supplies on the road, I worked plies of toilet paper onto a piece last night with paint and added lines to it today. Can’t find hand sanitizer either. It’s going to be a long road home. I don’t know what further measures will be taken to slow the spread of this virus and I hope we don’t get caught up in it on the road.
Day 56: March 17
That didn’t go as planned. Again. Tuesday’s never seem to be a good day for one reason or another to lay the art out for documentation.
When I started I figured I’d make maybe 50 pieces. I’m on track for one a day even though I don’t finish one each day. I work here, there and then all of a sudden a bunch teach the finish line together. Today I worked with a textured crow again, and again used the leftover paint to experiment with. Definitely not how I want to create work, but still a fun thing to explore.
I have to acknowledge this. It was supposed to be a color study. But oh no no no…
Things went wrong quickly here. The colors didn’t work the way I imagined. Then it just kept getting worse. I’m still thinking of ways to salvage it. But I feel nauseous looking at it from the color combinations.
Day 44: March 5
It isn’t that I don’t have time or ideas today. It’s that I just don’t want to. Not even a little bit.
I’ll start some pieces just with color. And leave it at that. No pressure today.
And then I never stopped.
Day 45: March 6
Traveling today. Had to fight for my work time this morning.
Day 46: March 7
No Internet Service.
Day 47: March 8
Did minimal today and yesterday. Was busy with human interactions. But I did start a big canvas…
I’m going to work on that separate from the 100 Day Project, even though it has sprung from it. I make the rules here.
Day 48: March 9
Day 49: March 10
This week became about exploring color. I was working it out on the paper and letting the colors surprise me. I think in the near future I’d like to explore color more.
Yesterday being entirely too windy for photos, this morning’s work time was spent catching up on documenting last weeks progress and posting the blog. Now we travel. I hope to touch paper later…
Day 37: February 27
It’s a slow start to this week. I started the bones of a new piece, but I cannot do much else. The camper isn’t stable enough to do lines and I don’t want to pull out the paints. I am thinking it’s about time to break out a canvas though. I feel I am ready to begin a body of work based on where I am at currently. My one thought is… “can I get myself to continue making small studies past the 100 Day Project?” Working out different ideas at the 5×7 level has given me many new ideas. I’m not one to work in a sketchbook, I like to put my energy into works not sketches. This is something of a compromise. I’m forced to explore “mistakes” (which I love) and follow them into new creative paths, but I’m not invested into a large piece.
Today I feel very confident in myself. I feel I’ve found a way to open it up to include exploration so I don’t feel like I have to sacrifice a medium or idea I love, nor do I have to keep working with one forever and always. I’m not looking at other art with doubt for my own choices.
I feel like I’m here. I can draw, paint, explore texture, symbolism… all in the same piece. Yes! Yes! Yes! One million times yes!
Day 38: February 28
A lot and yet a little happening this morning. Been sitting here working for some time. Peace in my heart.
Day 39: February 29
Just a little bit today.
Day 40: March 1
Came very close to nothing happening today. Then I caught a second wind and prepped some pieces with white paint tonight. When you are not feeling it… you can always do groundwork. It’s also very clear if I don’t work in the morning, I’m going to struggle to do something.
Day 41: March 2
Very productive this morning. Working on a lot of pieces, but not finishing anything.
Ok… maybe I am finishing things. I don’t love everything I’ve made, but I’m glad I explored them.
Took up a lot of the day.
I showed them in person for the first time to real live humans other than my husband this week. It was good practice being able to explain the process. WHAT? I used complete sentences about my work with people I didn’t know well and I think I even made sense. This process is working for me. Make art, daily. Preferably in the morning. Reflect on it using the blog. Who cares if anyone ever reads it, there’s an accountability that makes it happen, it works for me.
Day 42: March 3
That’s a wrap on week six. Explored color combinations and layering color combinations on textures this morning.
Yesterday afternoon through this morning we spent in an area with no cell service. I was able to get a lot of pieces to a starting point and a couple ready to take some color this morning before we packed up for the road. I even varied some techniques. This is a good time to explore those “what will happen if I do this” moments.
Day 30: February 20
I had some time on my hands. We had no cell service so I went to bed early and woke up in the wee hours of the night. I had a lot of extra hours of dark to fill with creative practice.
The Cow Skull on White Ground:
I began by playing more with the idea of a textured shape. That worked well in the previous skull pieces. The textures took the paint well and added interest without me working for it. For this one I knew I wanted the skull on a white ground. But white isn’t white, is it? I like using negative space. I felt a lot of pressure by professors to fill that space unnecessarily with details. For this one I used extra textures, a little color and played with paint drips. Even though it is nowhere near precisianism, it reminds me of Georgia O’keefe. I came to it from my own direction, but I recognize I may have interests inline with her work. Started reading up on her life and work.
Added a layer of burnt Sienna to the cow skull shape. Let that dry before fleshing out his lights and darks and adding splatters/drips.
I wanted to continue to study the acrylic colors: white, burnt Sienna and raw umber together. Decided to try a contrasting textured with ceramic cement.
I hate leaving leftover paint so I smeared it on a piece of paper. Then came back to it later and added some doodles.
I wanted to try out some green. I hated it. I tried mixing it a few different ways. It has also become an experimental color study.
Day 31: February 21
I’m so tired. Today was turned on it’s head. Instead of spending the day with art at a campsite in Sequoia National Forest we drove pointedly away from there. A storm was coming. So I touched the paper tonight. Caught up my notes to the blog on the 100 Day, because there was no internet connection up there either. And now I stare at that atrocity that is the green color study. I’m not ready for THAT. I think I’ll put some color on a raven.
Day 32: February 22
I tried last night to make that green experiment into something. Everything made it worse. So I painted it black, because that’s what was in my hand. And that sparked my interest, but the previous brush strokes were to visible. I mixed in the ceramic stucco texture and let it dry overnight. This morning it struck me to make lines, of course. From this piece I think I may want to explore more.
This morning’s second finish; another raven. Playing with different applications of texture and color combinations. I was going to polish it up more, but decided to leave the painting areas less perfect. Not usually something I’d do, but I’m leaving more room for experiments right now.
Day 33: February 23
This morning I started in on The For Agreements… then my human pushed me out the door. Don’t know if I’ll get back to anything today or not.
Day 34: February 24
I don’t think the lines were working this morning’s piece. I’m going to paint over them later. Try something else…
Day 35: February 25
Ok I don’t hate it today. But we are going with a different color combo. Onward.