A Portrait of A Horse, Of Course, Of Course

I’m going to take a moment to check in and say, “Buy my stuff, please.”

Here is a sample drawing I did of our horse Roux (Roo):

Roux Cartoon Collage
https://www.etsy.com/shop/DancesWithPaint

Excited!

So, I posted last time that I was selling cartoon portraits on my Etsy shop .

My friend bought one!

My first sale on there! Woo hoo!catherineCatcatCollage

And she liked it enough to get two more!

CatherineCat2 Collage

CatherineCat3 Collage

Yay!

Mixologist

Years ago I was reading a book about Attention Deficit Disorder and one of the things she talked about was not to always be negative about the things you struggle with. She recommended trying to put a positive spin on things. For example, don’t dwell on being bad at organization, but consider that you are really good at taking things apart and rearranging them.

I wish I was able to remember what book it was so I could go back and find out what word she used. It was a specific word for that creative disorder and reorder that some of us are so good at. It may have been an art term, but I haven’t come across it in my art studies. Over the last few years, I’ve tried to look it up in other places because I feel that as an artist and as a human my main function is to blur those lines of demarcation that are so boldly etched between divisive labels, categories, or so-called boxes.

Many (uh, all) of the these divisions are not as clear cut as you might think. There is a lot of crisscrossing and overlap if you only look a little harder. People and things that don’t fit strongly into a clearly marked box are often overlooked or rejected in favor of clarity and ease of description. Which is fine if you are willing to reject reality. Because the truth is that messy and disordered and uncategorizable is the essence of life. In life, in art, in science, and in nature you can always find things and people and behaviors that don’t follow the mainstream and the usual “rules.”

I feel that a militant stance on any one rule or set of rules usually covers a fear of the unknown and where you might fit into that unknown, new hierarchy if the status quo is status quashed. Take, for example,  Art vs Craft. I understand the need to elevate the role of the artist to something beyond the ordinary. I benefit highly from that distinction and do not treat it cavalierly. The trouble comes when an artist, or a fine craftsman, as they like to say, takes skill and imagination to a place that is not inside those categories, but somewhere in the middle. I wield glue nearly as often as I do a brush or pencil. Other artists use what are traditionally considered crafts in such new and innovative ways, or at such a “high level” that they bump Craft into the category of Art.

There is plenty of room inside Art for everything. For all of it.

When I was a teen I was in love with the bartender character in the movie Cocktail. I was planning to do what he did. Bartend in the islands somewhere during the winter and back here the rest of the time. After a detour or two, I did eventually become a bartender. While I wasn’t the jetsetting bartender that I had envisioned, I did learn about mixing and pouring drinks and some of what it takes to run a bar.

I wasn’t a bad bartender. But, to be honest, I am not quite social enough to do it for very long before I get burned out. Some people are hardwired in a way that makes them ideal for it.  A really good bartender is one part accountant, one part scientist, and three parts showman, with a shot of flair and a splash of crazy. Mix with ice, shake, pour and watch the magic unfold.

But they don’t all invent new drinks. I think that a mixologist is a bartender who can envision how things might taste together and tinkers and tries it until it comes to fruition. This way of seeing is a unique gift to have. The ability to look out past the is to the can be and then to follow your line of sight out into the future is kinda magical.

That’s why I’ve decided that I already have my word for someone who mixes, blends, blurs, connects, rearranges, reassembles, remakes, creates, invents, explores, and just generally muddles things around until they are a new being.
I am a mixologist.

Bar’s open.

Must needs these

So, I need to invent a couple of things right quick.

First, I need a Bleach Scented Candle. That way my house can smell like I cleaned it without all that pesky work*. Of course, I’ll need to figure out how to make it a scent that I am not reactive to. But that is a mere detail. And can be worked out later!

The other thing that I need to invent is a holster to hold multiple phones. I am making that for my friend since we were talking about having multiple Twitter accounts and how it’s difficult to switch between them on his phone**. The obvious solution to this problem is multiple phones. Obviously, again, we then need a convenient way to carry them with ease of access. I envision it as an ammo belt criss crossing the chest like a bandolero  Or it might be in a binder with pockets and dividers similar to baseball card protectors. Lastly, it could be in some sort of wallet that unfolds your phones like those things that hold all of your grandkids photos.

There. I have improved the world yet again.

 

*I am cleaning. It’s just not fast enough. Somebody get me of this damn treadmill.

**Soon enough he will no doubt write the code for an app that manages multiple accounts like that. Because that’s what he likes to do. This is an interim solution. Or maybe just cooler.

Fire breathing sans filter

I remember back in the days before it wasn’t cool to smoke when the Marlboro Man was hot and real men wanted to be like him and cowboy up and smoke nonfiltered because filters are for pussies. when having to put a filter on when you were trying to motherfucking breathe fire meant you were weak and couldn’t take the heat.
so remember, when you are burning your fire stick and breathing fire, that filters are for those of us who can’t stand the burn. non-filtered is stronger and, no doubt, burns faster and brighter while it sears and cauterizes and heals. non-filtered, unrestricted, wild fire is a cleansing by nature to make room for new life by clearing out the flammable junk that is cluttering up the path and posing a fire hazard threat. it may be scary and some people try to tame it, but we know that a little fire now will prevent a catastrophic burnout later. people might be scared by the flames that might burn us and turn away from the glare, but we also can also find comfort and safety in the circle of light and warmth that is cast. so, unfiltered may be uncomfortable and sometimes unwelcome, but it is not unbecoming. it is, in fact, unfettered and unleashed. and sometimes you might choke on the smoke but the clear, fresh air is so much sweeter after that it is worth it. because you can breathe fire and light up the night, and chase away the demons who hide in the dark.

*this post is dedicated to my friends who struggle with filtering and trying to reign themselves in. I, myself, struggle with the opposite problem. I tend to filter entirely too much and I am trying to be more like you.

I am not fat. (Viewer discretion advised)

When I talk about my ADD I try to be careful to make the distinction that I have it, not that I AM it.  I’ve blogged about it before.  Someone posted on facebook recently a sentence that, after it had a little time to sink in, really made my stop and think. What they posted was:

Fine, I have fat, not I am fat.

At first I dismissed it a little. Yes, of course, that makes sense. So? But it refused to give up as easily as that and niggled around in my brain, tapping at neurons until I paid more attention to it. Right. Okay. Yes. It’s kind of obvious once you think about it, isn’t it? I have fat. It does not define me. As much as our thin obsessed society would like me to think otherwise, I am not fat. I have fat. I have fat on my body. Some of which, maybe even most, I’d like to take off of my body. I am working at doing so. But in the meantime I am resolved to love my body for the beauty that it holds now.

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I have fat. That little word has no bearing on myself as a person. It has nothing to do with my heart, my soul, my sexiness, my womanliness, my abilities as a mother, as a spouse, or as an artist.

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I think that our media and society has fetishized thinness to point where people have trouble believing that any variation is attractive at all. It’s hard to envision yourself as beautiful when society holds up a picture of what beauty is and you don’t match it. We have swallowed the line heard so often; that we ARE fat and that being fat is a failing. The truth is that having fat is not a failing. Even if you want to lose weight or fitten up, it is possible to love yourself and your body now. In fact, you must. The way you talk to yourself colors the entirety of your experience. If you are hateful toward your body it won’t work with you it will work against you. You need to love your body into a new shape.

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I wonder if it would be easier to turn down a “fatty” dessert if you could just say, “No, thanks. I already have enough fat.” As opposed to drawing it in to the fatness that you ARE because you can’t separate yourself from your fat. Hard to say. But it’s sure as hell worth a try.

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A funny thing happened yesterday. I was on Pinterest and ended up spending 15 or 20 minutes looking a a couple of boards in promotion of Curvy women. After just that little amount of time had a big effect on my perception of my own body.

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Just that small amount of time looking a big beautiful women let me see in me some of the things that I considered beautiful about them. Imagine if that could happen all of the time. If women of every beauty type across the broad spectrum were regularly represented in mainstream media. If your culture said that you were beautiful, too.

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It is hard to imagine it.

What if our young men saw that it was okay to find more than one type of woman attractive? What if it was not considered a fetish to be attracted to bigger people? What if we allowed people to love who they love without labels?

What if I told you you’re beautiful?

What if you knew it already because you didn’t have to fight so hard against society’s cookie cutter idea of beauty?

What if I am not fat? What if I have fat?

What if it doesn’t really matter that much if I do?

Fettered

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