Fuck you wind!

I’ve always hated really windy storms. I don’t particularly care for thunder storms either but I can mentally process THAT noise, but wind? I’m as much a wimp about wind as Daisy is about the vacuum cleaner. Growing up, my bedroom was in the back of the house. In the yard we used to have a HUGE palm tree that I think was at least 2-3 stories high. When the Santa Ana winds or a really bad windy storm would hit, that blasted tree would sway and loudly creak. It used to cause me massive panic in my youth that it would suddenly snap and come crashing through the roof of my bedroom. When the Northridge earthquake hit in 95, our backyard wall and awning fell so my folks decided to gut the tree thankfully. But ever since then, I now go into full panic mode about really huge gusts of wind.

Here in CA we’re finally getting some proper rain and last night was an intense storm that felt like the world outside was trying to get in. It was so bad I could hear the vent over the stove rattling. So of course, this triggered a panic attack. Haven’t had one of those bastards in awhile. It probably hit because I’m alone this week as Hubby is on a business trip. I locked myself and Daisy in the bedroom, blared Sherlock on my laptop while I did some drawings hoping to subside the anxiety. But once I noticed it was almost 1 am, I decided to go to bed. The storm had died down so I figured I’d be okay.

Apparently, my brainmeats didn’t get the memo! It started spinning about me dying, the weight on my chest turned into a boulder, the heart started running a marathon, and I started crying. Managed to after about an hour of deep breaths and mentally screaming at myself to go the fuck to sleep, my brainmeats decided to chill the fuck out.

So yeah, fuck you wind. You suck AND you blow. Eat a bowl of dicks wind.

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Winter break update

I haven’t had a chance to do any writing recently but I’ve finally got a moment to get some of the buzzing around in my head out.
First a quick school update:
Hooray! Another semester is done and this blog can go back to being about my normal shenanigans. I am beyond glad that this semester is over because the stress it caused me along with the crap fest that 2016 was made going to school feel like a trek through the Swamp of Sadness. Only 2 more left until I have my degree.

Now, onto the State of Strange Child:
Ugh. 2016 was such a royal bitch wasn’t it?! Losing John so suddenly was difficult as being so distant I felt helpless. I wanted to jump on a plane and run out there to be there for her and her daddy. But I couldn’t. I couldn’t even make it out for the memorial because of school. The depression from the summer break didn’t quite go away either. It lingered like a fart in the air. I was constantly feeling like a failure and that I was grasping at straws to get stuff done. I got B’s in both of my general ed classes and it STILL bugs me that I see this as a fail. I feel like I busted my ass in both of those classes yet I didn’t excel like I normally do. (Stupid ADD brain) That’s another thing that’s getting to me. I may need to have my meds adjusted as I feel, …….off. I want to do a billion things, but don’t have enough time to get it all done. So many art projects, cooking ideas, exercise I need to do, books to read, movies to watch, etc. Just not enough hours in the day. Plus Hubby will pout about missing me.
I really miss being able to have weed too. Ever since that horrific experience in February, I’ve stayed away from it because I’m terrified of it happening again. But I desperately miss that warm glowing feeling it gave me that allowed me to just relax and be in the moment. I would feel so happy and carefree. I get that way when I’m buzzed on booze, but the hangover is horrific. With weed I wake up the next day totally chill and ridiculously well rested. Hubby is annoyed that I haven’t gotten my card yet. Says I just need to “vagina up” and do it. He even told me about some mobile app that would allow me to do it over the phone. I am just terrified of doing it. I know its easy, and that its not that big of a deal, but the thought of me having to go into one of the offices to get one of the cards paralyzes me for some reason. I  just want to feel that moment of fuzzy happiness where I just don’t give a shit about anything other than laughing and having something tasty. Hell, when I had some while Hubby was away on business to help keep me calm while I’m all by myself I’d draw up a storm! I’d throw something on Netflix on, sit on the bed, draw while sort of paying attention, and then look up to realize that it was 2am. He’s going on another trip soon. It’d be nice if I could be able to have that again.

I should write here more often I know. Especially about my art. I have gotten better with my painting. This semester I learned how to better do the fluid painting so I’ll be able to play with that more efficiently where I’m not blowing through paint like before. I also learned how to do transfers so now when I draw something, I don’t have to try to recreate it again onto the canvas, I can just trace it with transfer paper! Saves my mental health so damn much learning this!!!!! Also, I learned how to do digital collages in Photoshop! Oh sweet Chuck I love doing those!! I will need to learn more about Photoshop so I think I’ll try to find some sort of tutorial book so that I can really get good at them. Next semester I’m playing with ceramics again so perhaps I’ll be able to make some cool things there too. For now, I’m working on a 4 painting series of the four elements: fire, water, air and water. Got them all drawn onto the canvases and ready to paint. I hope to have those done by the end of next week. I’m hoping to do at least one drawing every night that Hubby is gone to keep my skills up. I feel like I’m slacking in that area right now.

A new year. It already is going to be hard considering the state of the US being run by an orange shitgibbon with a super sensitive ego and congress of jackasses. But then again, maybe we need this shit fest in order to better ourselves. Who knows. I just want to make pretty things, watch Star Wars, laugh, and learn new things.

Art outing #3

Have been so distracted by the holidays that I forgot to post this.

I went to this jazz club in Oakland called Cafe Van Kleef to just check out whomever was playing that night and to get some tasty drinks. An artist named Dave Rocha was playing that night. He’s a trumpet player who has been inspired by Mile Davis and John Coltrane. I’m not too much of a jazz music fan but my maternal grandfather was a jazz player. Tenor saxophone was his instrument. I enjoy places like Cafe Van Kleef because it takes me back to my childhood listening to my grandfather play. Rocha was a delight to listen to and thought his performance was superior. I’ll probably go out to Cafe some time soon as my husband enjoys the place immensely. Plus, the bar’s decor is so much fun to look at! It’s done up like New Orleans’ Bourbon street, which taxidermy creatures, beads, and other random weird things. Love it!

Art Outing 2: Writing assignment

Back in October, I took a visit out to the Legion of Honor art museum. Normally, I’m not all that fond of the museum. It tends to not have interesting works or exhibitions that involve works that I enjoy. My husband however loves to go there, so we decided to take in the exhibition of the Le Nain brothers before it closed. I am not normally attracted to artworks that are considered Classical. This is mostly due to my unfamiliarity with subject manners that involve religious themes. However I do appreciate the painting techniques of the artists while the images themselves do not usually evoke any kind of emotional reaction within me. The special exhibition was not that particularly interesting to me for this reason, however the one painting that did intrigue me was the final image in the exhibit titled Allegory of Victory. This painting stands out starkly against the rest of the images on display mainly because of how its composition is strangely laid out. What is most strikingly peculiar about the painting for me is that of the second female figure in which the angel is standing on. First, I noticed was how her back is arched awkwardly; if someone was standing on one’s torso, they wouldn’t be arching their back upwards quite like that. Secondly, the bottom figure is oddly placed underneath the angel, with no indications of weight being distributed on the torso. It is as if she was added into the painting as an after-thought by the artist. The feet of the bottom figure also appear to be turning into a serpent’s tail, which is a bit visually jarring when trying to understand the story the image is telling. An intriguing aspect about the bottom figure is how her legs almost appear to be slowly vanishing. The landscape in the background is seeping through her legs, which adds to my theory that this figure was added on after the victorious angel was completed. An alternative to this thought is that the paint used is slowly fading away due to degradation. The background landscape also is visually odd in that towards the bottom there are very small figures meant to indicate a perception of depth, but instead creates an unusual visual contradiction in comparison to the two female figures in front. All of the paintings peculiarities is what draws me into it further. I became fascinated with the curvature of the angel’s form and the way the wings spread across the top of the painting so beautifully. I was disappointed I couldn’t purchase a copy of the image to hang in my home, as this is one of the few classical artworks that I could make a connection with.  Overall, this was the one painting that struck an emotional response, which is why I love art so very much. There was an exhibition on art books next door that was really cool to see. On the wall was a series of Pablo Picasso images where he took the same image and did it twenty distinctly different ways. The last image ended up resembling random abstract shapes and figures. Yet another reason Picasso was a great! Still, the Legion remains otherwise dull to me.

Art outing: Writing assignment

First one: A Trip to SFMOMA!

I enjoy this museum immensely because each time I visit I find new works to fall in love with. The one artist whose work intrigued me the most on this trip was Mark Grotjahn. His works features abstract geometric shapes that resemble optical illusions. The paintings I was drawn the most towards were from his Butterfly series. These are works that are based upon Renaissance perceptive principles involving the horizon line and a vanishing point. One large image is of a rainbow spectrum of colors forming parallel horizontal lines that slant inward towards the center of the painting, resulting in an abstracted butterfly wings illusion. If one stares at for a few minutes the lines pulsate, as if the wings are fluttering. The lines appear to stretch and shrink at the same time. Another smaller image on the other side of the colorful one has a similar horizontal line layout, but the colors are only black and creamy white and the two distinct vanishing points in the center are placed on different spots. One point is above the other vanishing point. I found that staring at it sideways made the image sort of swirl, like one of those old three dimensional images with a hidden picture in it. The hidden swirl I noticed was probably the result of the small dashes that are placed not quite in a circular fashion towards the center of the painting. I found myself just sitting in front of these two images with my head tilted, simply enjoying the feelings of staring into a colorful geometric abyss. This was why Grotjahn’s work is so fascinating to sit and stare at; the visual version of mental static white noise that is as soothing as waves crashing. Each of his images in the Campaign for Art exhibition were fun to just sit and stare at and watch the lines sway or swirl, defying their stationary positions on the canvas. I walked up to the exhibition that had mostly abstract paintings, which I believe were on the 5th floor. Huge, to almost ridiculous levels of height some of these were. I couldn’t even image what it was like to complete those. Overall it was another delightful visit to MOMA, and I fully expect to do it again soon.

A dark week in Strange Child’s world

Its been a ridiculously tough year. And it just got more emotionally painful.

Friday, November 18, 2016 at 2:30am a family member died. His name was John Johnson. He was the husband to Mikio, and adopted father to my daughter Lily. He was a goofy man who’s heart was full of love and light. He was tender, silly, and an absolutely wonderful father.
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My husband and I just aren’t the kind of people that should be parents. Knowing this is a deeply painful thing to admit, but as we were in that situation at the time, we recognized that there are people that are meant to be loving parents. So it was going to be our honor to give them the gift they so desperately wanted. We set out specifically to find a gay couple too as we know that those couples fight even harder to make a family in this messed up country of hate and selfishness. Our standards were simple: they had to have been together longer than 5 years, and were financially stable to provide for her. The agency sent us flyers of potential couples and we shifted through them. I narrowed it down to two flyers; one of them was the one Mikio had done up to look like the magazine that he works for.  In January of 2009, we made arrangements to meet them. They were the only couple we would meet. That meeting was amusing and we left with zero doubts that they were the right people to raise our daughter. They agreed to an open adoption, which means that we have access to our daughter’s life and she has access to us. She knows who we are and what we are to her. She calls me mommy too. When she was born, John embodied the befuddled new dad stereotype. He was afraid to hold her for fear of dropping her. He was already telling bad dad jokes too. I recently started joking that he was would be the real life version of Ty Burell’s character on “Modern Family” by trying to be The Cool Dad. He was supposed to be the dad she rolls her eyes at and groans at how dorky he is.

But that isn’t going to happen. His heart broke and now he’s gone. My little girl is going to grow up without one her daddies.

Every now and again, my mind wanders over to memories of his smile or mannerisms. It begins to hurt when I think of her. I won’t be able to fly out there as school and finances are barriers. I may be on vacation this week, but I’ve got school work to do and stuff around the house that has been piling up that needs to be done. I’d probably make a trip out there in January before my classes start up again.

I want to hug my little girl and her papa. Apparently, she’s being the strong one. She’s the one comforting the adults. When hubby spoke with her, she said, “Don’t cry. Daddy’s in a better place now.” That’s my girl.

Mapping project: Final layout

As I try to avoid having a panic attack as the election results roll in (seriously, I’ll be sickened if that orange goblin wins), I decided to share my final layout for the mapping project.

Concept process:
I didn’t have much time to get out to do the photo scavenger hunt map that I wanted to do, so I just decided to do a map of the two cities I’ve spent most of my life in with noted spots on the map that relate to me. I originally wanted to do the grid lines on top of each other, but a student in the class made a suggestion of incorporating my love of Doctor Who into it. That got me spinning into creative land and I found some images to use. Some time playing around in Photoshop, since I couldn’t really figure out Illustrator and my trial ran out, and I managed to put together something awesome in my opinion.

The shapes are of my two favorite doctors: 10 and 11. 11 is on the left with the map of the Bay Area in his silhouette, while 10 is on the right with LA in his silhouette.  The icons for the map are the Adipose for food (since its a creature made of fat), Bow tie for schools I’ve gone to (because bow ties are cool), a Weeping Angel for the church I was married in (don’t blink), K-9 for the shelter that we got Daisy, a Dalek for the Alameda flea market (its at a navy base), and of course the Tardis for the all of the places I’ve lived at.

Artist statement:
“Home, the Long Way Round”
“I have a new destination. My journey is the same as yours, the same as anyone’s. It’s taken me so many years, so many lifetimes, but at last I know where I’m going. Where I’ve always been going: home. The long way around.”- The Doctor (11)

Home means something different for everyone. Having lived in only two cities in my life, I’ve always fantasized about traveling continuously; never landing in one spot for too long as I’d only get itchy to see more things. I have a love of geek and pop culture that has no bounds, and is as endless as the universe itself. Which is probably why I adore the British TV series Doctor Who so very much. From the very first episode of “Rose”, I realized that I had found my personal savior. His is this enigmatic alien character known as a Time Lord that travels all of time and space in his infinitely bigger on the inside blue police box called the Tardis. The show focuses on his adventures with his human companions and his determination to never stop seeing what needs to be seen. He has a motto of “Never cruel nor cowardly” and no matter what situation he finds himself in, he always finds a way out of it, no matter the odds. The Doctor never goes where he wants to go, only to where he needs to go. Each time the Doctor dies he regenerates into a new face, making him just as infinite as the universe itself. I chose this because the show is very much a part of who I am. I turn to it during emotionally dark times as it helps me get through many of my depressive moments. Also, the show is kind of a family thing as all of my family members watch the show and it is one of the few things that we bond over. Hence, the show itself is home.

The map and icons are imagery from the series representing specific spots for the two cities I’ve come to call home. The two shapes are the silhouettes of each of my two favorite doctors. On the left is 11, played by Matt Smith, with the map of the Bay Area in his shape. On the right is 10, played by David Tennant, with the map of the San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles in his shape. I placed them within a nebula of space as the image is strikingly beautiful in how it demonstrates the fairy-tale quality that is the universe he travels in. The icons represent locations of favorite places to eat, schools I’ve attended, homes I’ve in, the animal shelter I got my dog from, the church I was married in, and the flea market held at a former navy base that I find most of art projects at.

The Doctor once said that, “the least important things lead to the greatest discoveries.” (1st Doctor)

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