GET. UP. The Second

When in doubt about how to proceed with your art installation, invite a second party in for a consultation.

Suggestion: Address the extremes.

A loving connection. Mutual grooming. Any time and place is a good time for that. Again it is all about the inner cat and the cat oneness with the universe. Do what you want where you want. As loudly and lick-ily as you want.

Stunning disapproval. Stare daggers at those who disapprove of your choices. Savages! If the world cannot GET. UP. , you’ll put those feelings on the table.

Also please, GET. UP. creating great art makes cats hangry.

GET. UP.

The GET. UP. series is an art project/ protest piece that the cats are working on.

It digs into the impact of alarm clocks in cat lives and how human time is a ridiculous structure. At the heart of cat lives there is only meal time and that is something sensed and ingrained through a oneness with the universe.

While all of them participate in their own way, Miles seems to take the lead in exploring different approaches to the subject matter and curating photos.

Art Critic

Birdie: “What the fuck is this happy bag of bullshit?”

Not impressed.

She wants nothing to do with it. I made several attempts at getting her to pose with her likeness. Nope. Not in her contract, thank you very much.

I apologized. I really don’t know what I’m doing in terms of drawing or painting techniques. My high school experience did not include the myriad of options that my students have. They get to sign up for art classes for the hell of it. I don’t remember that even being a thing unless you were “the artsy kid.” I was “a band kid,” the end.

So aside from different workshops like the lino cut and some acrylic pour, I’m limited. This just means that OG Adventure Buddy who does have legit art skills, gets text messages that scream, “NOW WHAT DO I DO?”

Birdie’s portrait was just one of those trapped at home project ideas that I got in my head. I also have a vision for Miles. Of course, I had to extensively procrastinate before starting. I knew from observing those who know what they are doing, that they seem to start with filing in the background. Sometime in mid February I pulled the trigger on getting started.

I think it’s done. I had the Bird add her paw prints; she was not thrilled. I’m lucky the bathroom is not painted in white paw prints. Certainly her disdain for my work will be reflected in her extensive critical essays soon to be published in some swanky art forum. ****I forgot to mention that the wreath is catnip. She’s an addict.

Valentines:Shit got weird

MomBert sent this tiny little owl she created for Valentines Day. I’ll add it to my forest of creatures.

I had nothing prepared because I pretty much have Valentines Day mostly blocked from my brain. So I worked with what I had: cat hair. HUZZAH!

This was the intent ultimately with real cat whiskers. ***Side note: Legit cat people have a whisker collection. Maybe for art projects. Maybe magic wands. We don’t really know, but just in case….

But this might have been the end result. I think we have a merkin situation.

May your hoo-haw be covered in cat hair! Happy Valentines Day!

Artist Shout Outs!: Hummingbird Moths

My one big flirt with COVID disaster – aside from going into a building and being exposed to 1500 teenagers on the daily– was a new tattoo. Not the most socially distant scenario, but I love it! MomBert hates it, which was a given. I blame Adventure Buddy, but she’s not having it.

Adventure Buddy’s precocious daughter decided that she and Adventure Buddy both needed tattoos for their birthdays of soon to be 18 and 50 respectively. Somehow I was invited to the party. However when the dust settled, the kid and I had new tattoos and Adventure Buddy had remodeled her kitchen. AB has zero tattoo intentions.

I decided that the space between my two bird and flower based tattoos needed filled in a bit with some lovely pollinators. Lacey Rawson at Evolved took on the task after a discussion of the word “proboscis“– I totally said it wrong— and what a hummingbird moth is. Lacey is also the artist responsible for my chickadee and flowers.

Taking bicep selfies is oddly difficult.

I am much enamored of the bee crawling up my shoulder, and Lacey seemed particularly excited about her bee creations. However the colors of the hummingbird moth are my favorite and I got to help choose them!

My wonderful little hummingbird moth and its proboscis became the inspiration for another piece of art. The OG Adventure Buddy sent pictures of my tattoo to Dragonfly Stained Glass Design, told the artist that I wasn’t afraid of color and let her get to work on my birthday present! (If you go to her website, she does lots of commission work!)

It’s meant to go in the garden--I do love some yard art–, but it’s so lovely that I want to wear it! It even has a proboscis!

Artober

One Adventure Buddy encouraged me to participate in Artober with her which is a list of daily prompts that people respond to with a sketch, painting whatever… Google “Artober” or “inktober” to play. We’re using the this list.

She is far more skilled at artistic endeavors than I. Her work clearly looks like something purposeful and has some perspective and depth to it. She also has a solid grasp of how to work with different mediums. My work kind of looks like something and is pretty flat. However I have fun doing it and that’s kind of the point.

Doodling is a soothing way to end my day. My brain has tapped out by 7:30 or 8 on a week night, but still has enough power to attempt the drawing prompt.

While I am definitely critical of myself, my biggest art critic is Miles. He likes to get right up in there and tear down what little ego I have left.

“This drawing is dumb because it is not of me.”

“Cry” is probably my favorite so far. It made me think of the summer I “battled” a groundhog family over who really owned the backyard. I used Chunk the Groundhog on Instagram as my model.

Day 8: Cry

Day to day challenges and the unending news cycle of hate and stupidity lead to some pretty dark thoughts. However sketching with some light TV (I love you, Schitt’s Creek. How does Dan Levy make his face do those expressions!) surrounded on average by three of four cats really helps ease me into bedtime.

Day 9: Dark

Your Moment of Chipmunk Zen

MomBert has been out in her studio making stained glass goodness to keep herself busy.

She was FaceTiming with me when she announced that the chipmunk was back and was drinking from a crack in the concrete. I, of course, chided her for such shoddy chipmunk accommodations. My yard wildlife have heated baths and ground level bowls to sip from and quench their tiny thirsts.

The next day, I got a chipmunk update.

That’s pretty cute, but I asked for more: “Can you get the chipmunk a tiny table and table cloth with place setting?”

The next day. Chipmunk Zen.

MomBert Makes Me Pretty Things: Part 3

The very first time I went to goat yoga at the farm, I was fascinated by the bone pit. It was just a leftover concrete foundation of some previous structure or maybe a filled in well, but it was full of bones and skulls! Glorious intact skulls with horns!

MomBert and every Adventure Buddy who has accompanied me since, has assertively whispered under their breath, “You need to take a skull.”

I can’t just climb into the bone pit and take a skull at goat yoga! That feels like all kinds of bad etiquette. Finally during a June visit last year, Adventure Buddy initiated a conversation about purchasing the skulls because I wasn’t about to do it. (I was also cupping a tiny baby bunny at the time, and chose to be really focused on that.)

It turns out that people buy the skulls all the damn time! The farm owner Katherine had three on hand that had been appropriately cleaned and dried because artists buy them frequently. In response, I rambled on about MomBert’s deer skull creations. So for $15, I bought a goat skull.

MomBert was not pleased.

I was sincerely surprised. Previously, she had created two really beautiful skull pieces with stained glass and then with costume jewelry. Her reticence came not from the idea of a skull but from a GOAT’s skull. She said that it made her think of all the Satanic associations. Meanwhile, brat that I am, I was like “I spent all of $15 on this and I want skull art!”

She found a way to make it work. Deciding on a bug theme, she started collecting bug themed costume jewelry. We made some choices together at an extravaganza flea market. There’s repeat vendor whose entire booth is layer upon layer of bejeweled costume jewelry. She has it sorted by holidays, animals, shapes etc…. Whatever you need! We had no trouble choosing a variety of inexpensive creatures from her. (I am eternally jealous of her personal jewelry. She usually has turquoise, Western style rings on every finger and drapes herself in squash blossom necklaces.)

Goat in the Flower Garden emerged at Christmas because it’s not Christmas until somebody gets a head in a box.

I think she could have gotten away with just the painting because the underlying flowers are so pretty. However I also love all the creatures we chose, especially the spider complete with thread and the tiny frog.