Tag Archives: art

New Year’s Eve Eve

The last time I wrote a blog post, it was Christmas Eve Eve and I was wondering how I would ever get all my Christmas wrapping done. Now it’s New Year’s Eve Eve and I can report that I did manage to wrap everything and still get some sleep on Christmas Eve. I’m pretty sure A Christmas Story was still on its first run-through when I crawled into bed, but I couldn’t swear to it. I was bleary-eyed by then. I hope I don’t cut it quite so close next year, but I’m glad I pulled it off one more time.

I even managed to keep up with the sketch-a-day challenge. My drawings are not fancy but I have done one every day in the month of December and that makes me happy. The first year I joined the challenge, it seemed crazy to add one more thing to my already overloaded schedule, but I took it on and it gave me a nice spot of relaxation in each December day. Now I can’t imagine December without it. When I’m drawing, I’m not thinking about schedules or shopping or wrapping or baking. I’m just thinking about that one little object I’ve chosen to draw and how to capture it on paper.

My left brain gets a rest and my right brain gets to have fun. I sketch the most ordinary things but they become unique and special as I get to know them well enough to draw them.

Banana

Banana


This isn’t just any banana. It’s the particular banana that was in my house December fifteenth, with it’s bits of green and little brown spots. And this is a specific green pepper that we bought so we could make chili for the family taffy pull on the nineteenth.
Green Pepper

Green Pepper


Peanut Butter Kiss

Peanut Butter Kiss


This is the taffy. I was exhausted that day, so it’s a simple pencil sketch and I just noticed that I dated it wrong. I drew it on the nineteenth, not the twentieth. On the twentieth, I drew a cookie.
Peppermint Swirl Cookie

Peppermint Swirl Cookie


I have been hoping the daily drawings would lead me gently back to painting. I still need to do forty plein air paintings before my next birthday and my next birthday is thirty-nine days away. I still intend to do it, but I know it’s going to be a crazy five weeks if I manage to make it happen. The drawings do help. They remind me that I always have trouble starting things but I’m pretty good at finishing them. They remind me that making art is a gift to myself. It gets me through tough times and it makes happy times happier.

It heals me. It doesn’t need to do anything else.

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One Spark

Warning: This is going to be a picture-heavy post. It is also going to be a Jacksonville-centric post. Jacksonville, Florida is where I live and I don’t often get a chance to brag about it, but I’m bragging today, because today, my daughter and I went to One Spark.

What’s One Spark, you say? If you live in Jacksonville and you’re saying that, you really need to come out from under your rock a bit more often. One Spark is a huge crowdfunding festival and it’s happening right now in downtown Jacksonville. It continues through Sunday, April 13, 2014, so (if you’re reading this near its posting date) you still have plenty of time to experience it. You should; it’s awesome.

The point of One Spark is to give Creators a chance to get the attention of investors who can help them make their creative dreams real. Thanks to some generous sponsors, there are big pots of money to be won, but any and all people who attend have the opportunity to support any project that wows them. That’s where the crowdfunding comes in. One person may only have a few dollars to give, but there were forty thousand visitors there the first day. If only a fraction of them decide to give what they can to a favorite project, their contributions could add up quickly, and I sure hope they do, because we saw some amazing projects.

I’m getting ahead of myself, though. It all started with free parking at the convention center and a free ride on the Automated Skyway Express.

Skyway

Skyway


This took us to Hemming Plaza, where we checked in at the One Spark kiosk. You need to check in to vote and contribute, so by all means, check in. We saw lots of cool things in Hemming Plaza, including a tipi under a tree and a giant goldfish in the fountain.
Tipi

Tipi


goldfish

goldfish


It was hard to decide where to go from there. Art and entrepreneurs were everywhere. We saw art being made right in front of us.
Art

Art


We saw it passing by.
Bigwheel

Bigwheel


We saw the amazing new mural by Shaun Thurston in the atrium of the Museum of Contemporary Art.
Atrium Project

Atrium Project


My daughter plunked herself down on the floor to take it in. After a while, my purse started feeling heavy, so I told her I would sit on a bench while she finished doing whatever it was she was doing.
Appreciating

Appreciating


“Appreciating,” she said.

Once we were finished appreciating, we started to feel hungry. There were many options, including a food court, but my daughter had seen a restaurant with potstickers on the menu, so her choice was already made. It turned out to be a good choice. She had the potstickers and I had the tofu curry. It was almost too pretty to eat, but I somehow forced myself.

Pretty food

Pretty food


The restaurant was Pho – A Noodle Bar. As soon as she tasted her potstickers, my daughter started texting all her friends to recommend this restaurant. I don’t text, but I blog, so I’ll add my recommendation here. Go to Pho. The prices are reasonable and the food is wonderful. The service is prompt and friendly, too.
Yes, that's my reflection in the window

Yes, that’s my reflection in the window


Once food had been acquired, I went in search of coffee, which I found in the place my daughter calls the Temple of the Money Gods (the Bank of America building), which had some interesting Creators in the lobby. Then we went to another Temple of the Money Gods (the Wells Fargo building) to check out the Creators on the second floor. I kept seeing the word “EdSpark” and wondering who Ed was until it finally hit me that all these Creators were trying to to fund projects that were educational. My daughter homeschools her children, so we spent a lot of time at EdSpark. I found a great quote on the wall.
Great quote

Great quote


I also found a place where I could be photographed with deely boppers, a feather boa and butterfly wings. Sorry about my expression; I think I was trying to explain the camera to my daughter.
Cheer up, Butterfly

Cheer up, Butterfly


EdSpark alone had over forty Creators. Once we made it out of there, it was getting late and we needed to head back to Hemming Plaza so we could catch the Skyway back to the convention center. On the way, we saw this:
Yarn bombing and worms

Yarn bombing and worms


There was so much amazing art and enterprise at One Spark that we could only see a fraction of it in one day. While I was writing this post, my daughter called to ask me if we could go back tomorrow and take the kids.

Of course, I said “Yes.” We should really be making tie-dye, but One Spark only comes once a year.