The Sketchbook Challenge: Highly Prized

January 31, 2011

I’ve been thinking about the Sketchbook Challenge theme all month.
It only took a few minutes to know what I consider to be very valuable.
The first bit glued into my sketchbook? My usual schedule. It looks like that through next June. Five kids and a part time career will do that to you. Time is flying by and I often feel I’m missing it. My oldest daughter just applied for college. I’m feeling a little … something. Excited? Yes. Apprehensive? Just a tiny bit – she’s prepared. Bushwhacked? When did she grow up!?!
I’ve thought of images I wanted to incorporate. I’ve thought of amazing and wonderful outcomes.
I’ve also avoided actually doing anything until the last possible moment. It’s a fear thing. Yup – me. The lady who preaches non-stop that “it’s all about DOING the work and we can’t let fear get in the way.” Here I am in front of everybody – thinking everybody is expecting some fantastic outcome and feeling inadequate.
So. TIME for me to take my own words to heart and just DO it. Forget about expectations. 
1- The calendar gets glued in. Painted over with a bit of gesso. Oops. Now I remember that ink-jet prints smear when wet. Ah well, so be it. Find a couple of my favorite pics.
2- Let the gesso layer dry then paint a little bit of a color wash over that. I’m using Prochemical’s Profab Textile Paints – because I have a LOT of them on hand. They’re an acrylic and work fine.
3- Play around with photoshop and a few of the images that speak to my feelings. Print them out, cut them out, glue them in. I used a PVA glue this time. I think I might like gel medium better. We’ll see.
4- Add a little more of a blue wash over the hands to blend it into the background.
5- More acrylic in a transparent blue and an opaque white – swirls in with a brush – like time swirling all around me and away.
6- Hunt through my stack of screen for the perfect image. Ah – there it is. This time I used it like a stencil, first with the white opaque paint, then a navy transparent. It was a pain having the wire binding loops right in the way. I’m seriously thinking of working with loose sheets then binding them as shown in Jane Davie’s  tutorial. When I find some time.
I am addicted to thermofax screen printing. I have a machine and run a service, making ready made or custom screens. It allows me to feed my insatiable hunger for making new images in my own work. This particular screen came from a photo sent by Alexandria (one of my on-line students from of one of her antique pocketwatches.  
This is what my work surface looks like when I’ve got projects going on. Stuff left from the last class I taught. Samples shoved out of the way. Kids forms for school events to be filled out. The usual. No – I’m not an artist who thinks clutter is great – it drives me nuts. I work best when I can clean everything up and start fresh with room to work and breath. No TIME for cleaning up right now.
8- Last step – I started in with pencil, moved up to a Sukura Pigma Pen and then decided a sharpie would glide over the bumpy acrylics on the page. 
My baby has wings. She’s ready to fly.
I’d love your feedback.
Do you have any ideas that could help me?
I want to learn how to savor each moment, live in the present. I still have to keep most of my schedule – I’m already very good at saying no to more stuff. The things I do I love. But time still flies away.
Oh, and don’t forget to head over to  the Sketchbook Challenge today to see who won this months giveaways. February’s theme will go up tomorrow. Can’t wait!
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  • Reply
    Julia Wade
    February 25, 2011 at 6:51 pm

    absolutely stunning lyric

  • Reply
    February 23, 2011 at 1:14 am

    LOVE the sketchbook image. Don't know I missed this entry before. Just remember that as your "little one" gets ready to leave the nest she will peck at you and do things to irritate to show she is grown up and doesn't need help. Let it slide and enjoy your time with her. They have a tendancy to call and text a lot once they've gone. 😀

  • Reply
    February 2, 2011 at 12:49 am

    Oh Lyric,
    This entry made me misty-eyed as my oldest prepares to graduate college, my baby is a sophmore, and I have to move away from them this summer.
    Time is so very very fleeting and you captured a moment in time beautifully!
    Hug everyone extra tight tonight as you tuck them in:)

  • Reply
    Roxane Lessa
    February 1, 2011 at 4:05 pm

    I loved that page, beautiful! We all feel that rushed , scared feeling. Make a plan for what is important to you and put it on a timeline, that helps me.

  • Reply
    January 31, 2011 at 8:58 pm


    Thank you for sharing your method and time is certainly precious.

  • Reply
    Leslie Tucker Jenison
    January 31, 2011 at 6:29 pm

    I love that your table is all jumbled up. I have one just like it in my own studio. I feel the same way about clutter: it drives me insane, yet I can't seem to avoid it when I'm in the throes of a project. Or two.
    The imagery and "feel" of these pages are so appealing.
    Thanks for talking us through your process.

  • Reply
    January 31, 2011 at 2:31 pm

    Lyric, thank you for writing down & your pics of your thought and process. It really helps us wannabes to feel better about what we do. Thanks you again and again. Please keep sharing like this. I remember when our only child(daughter) went away from home to college. It was very hard on me and I did not know until many years later just as hard on her. We both survived. I love the emotion you portraied in your pages!

  • Reply
    Wen Redmond
    January 31, 2011 at 1:21 pm

    I love the spontaneity that you project in this page. Isn't is funny how one thing leads to another.
    Great work!

  • Reply
    Sally Westcott
    January 31, 2011 at 11:06 am

    Hi Lyric

    I just love your sketchbook!

    I might get there one day!

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