The text: ” As the seasons of the year spin round, August 1 falls about halfway between the summer solstice and the autumn equinox in the Northern Hemisphere.   Known by many names, this day has become a marker for the time when the ripening is done and the fruit ready for harvest.   All year I have been working on my “inner garden” through art, journaling, and meditation.  The harvest of inner well-being has come.”

TWP (c) 2011


I am on the twelfth and final week of my solo trek through The Artist’s Way.  Here is my visual journal response to the task that asks: “Write down any resistance, angers, and fears you have about going on from here.  We all have them.”   (Ugh, I just realized I misspelled ‘resistence’ in the painting.  LOL).   I wish I could end on a brighter note, but since the artist’s way is never static, I know I will have better moments down the path.

TWP (c) 2011

I keep a wellness  journal.  I wanted to change its black cover to something in keeping with the theme.  So I made a simple cover out of a brown paper grocery bag (like what we did to our school books in the fifth grade).  I gessoed the cover and then started applying tissue papers in greens and yellows, and glazing it with gel medium.  I created a digital image out of a mandala I made a while back by adding the heart and the wings.  I affixed it and applied more glazes of gel, ink stamping, and water color crayon.   Here’s the result:

TWP (c) 2011

I am a little apprehensive that I will be seen drawing pictures of people.   When you consider it, it is a bit intrusive, so in order to capture an un-staged, un-self-conscious image, I have to be a little sneaky.   Being sneaky though means that it is harder to sketch frontal images.    For example, below it is obvious that I was sitting behind the young lady with the pony-tail.  That image was fairly easy to pull off.   However, the gentlemen sitting on the stool was a little harder.  I kept sneaking little glances, rapidly sketch a line or two, then flip the page or check my watch, or turn my attention in the opposite way — anything to keep him from noticing that I was scrutinizing him.  So, as a result, this sketch is, well, sketchy.

TWP (c) 2011

I caught this moment at a local burger place. I quickly sketched it with a black felt-tip marker in a spiral bound ruled notebook.

(C) TWP 2011

I’ve been reading Tolkien’s The Silmarillion, listening to podcasts about this work, and indulging in archery. These themes, therefore, have come out in this art journal entry.

The text is a verse from Tolkien’s poem, The Lay of Luthien,  converted into an elvish-style font.   In English,

Farewell sweet earth and northern sky,
for ever blest, since here did lie
and here with lisson limbs did run
beneath the Moon, beneath the Sun,
Luthien Tinuviel.  (p. 178)


Image:  TWP, (c) 2011

One of the aims The Artist’s Way program is to get the blocked creative to think outside the box in order to break up the blockage. Two of the specific tasks outlined in the book is to do something you enjoy and another is think of things you did as a child in which you excelled. I combined two tasked in one: after 35 years, I decided to find a archery range and shoot.

There is only one archery range in my area and fortunately it is a reasonable travel distance from me. Secondly, they offer FREE lessons (I guess not all ranges do). And finally, they will lend you good equipment so you don’t have to invest in your own. The synchronicity (a frequent term in TAW) is undeniable. So, with my sister in tow (who was also an excellent archer in her day), we presented ourselves to the master archers at the range.

The bows are a lot different now. When I was younger, our bows did not have sight finders, string beads or fancy handles. However, the principles are still the same, and I am happy to say that I’ve still “got it.” About 80% of my shots were in the bull’s eye.

My sister was a pretty good archer back in the day (she has a nice trophy to prove it). She was a good sport today and let me make a video of her. Here it is:

Only time will tell if this activity has any effect on my creative process. It was fun and most likely, if I can manage the time commitment, I’ll be back on the range soon.

My studio used to be a corner consisting of a box of art supplies on the floor and a travel bag of the same on top of it. When I wanted to make art, I would take a masonite drawing board and the bag and go into the living room where there was a bit more space to spread out. Needless to say this was not comfortable or practical, and more to the point, it did not give proper respect to an activity that is important to me and which consumes a lot of my free time.

I am working through the Artist’s Way again, and one of the recent tasks was to set a small goal for yourself and then do it. A big goal of mine is to someday have a separate room serves as a studio; however, where I live now will not accommodate this goal, so I set the small goal to consolidate my art supplies and create a studio that was more than a corner and certainly not on the floor. Therefore, my artist’s date yesterday was to drive down to IKEA and look at small tables. Quite synchronicitously, IKEA had this little table top for less than $20. I got it, assembled it and spent the evening setting up my new space. I can now work on my digital art on the computer and then swing around to work on the non-digital creations. My art and writing books are within arm reach.

I am stoked. 🙂

You can see my “old” studio underneath the table: the box and the bag.

“Elvish Runes”

Mixed media painting

TWP (c) 2011

Many years ago an amateur genealogist sent me a drawing and a detailed description of a coat-of-arms saying that it belong to my family.  I am just taking this person’s word on this, but I thought the design was pretty cool so I’m going to claim it as legitimate.    A few years back when I was learning how to use Photoshop and Illustrator I decided to render this line drawing in color and depth.  Here’s the result:  (The creature on top is supposed to be a griffin).

TWP (c) 2011