Saturday, January 31, 2009
Friday, January 30, 2009
Thursday, January 29, 2009
Balancing on one foot to strengthen my bad ankle. Can also be done with eyes closed, intentionally shifting weight, looking in different directions, on a destabilizing object like a pillow or deweighting the heel of the load-bearing foot.
PT (and tracking down some newly persistent pain) seems to be uncovering weaknesses in other joints and muscle groups as well. Hoping that things will be better in the long run, but kind of disheartening at the moment.
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
I took a bunch of self-portraits to try and catch my new "hip" look, but the whole exercise kind of left me kind of down 'cause I could see the old. (this is actually one of the more benign ones.) It's creeping in from the edges. Trying to sneak up on me. But I can see it. I can see it in my face. I can see where it's going.
I look old. Or I feel like I look old. (And tired, too. Old and tired.) And paradoxically, I feel old, and yet I feel like I look older than I feel. Parse that one.
Anyway, it's all kind of a drag. This was actually going to be my photo for the day, but in the end I discovered that I liked how one of the other photos looked. Admittedly, because to some extent, I didn't like seeing the aging in myself.
And, of course, I should be working right now (not to mention doing a little drawing), so perhaps I'll just leave it at that.
Yep, more pictures of icicles and sheets of ice.
I originally took the picture because I love the texture and shapes of the icicles as the water sublimates in the cold dry air.
I ended up liking the end result more because of the way it refracts the light of the blue sky while also reflecting it onto the brown tarp.
Monday, January 26, 2009
The Boiler had shut off because the water level had gotten too low.
Unfortunately, we seem to have a leak in one of the radiators, so the boiler loses water over time. When the water level gets too low, a failsafe shuts the boiler off -- which is good, or it'd probably burn the house down.
Of course, if you're not paying attention and don't check up on things on a regular basis (which happens a lot in our house), it gets REALLY COLD before you notice things are amiss and then takes a while for things to warm back up again.
On the other hand, at least it gave me something interesting to use as a photo subject for an otherwise uninspiring day.
Sunday, January 25, 2009
Played with some caricatures of myself and the SOOTTAD today. Actually some improvement over past efforts, but still not quite where I want them to be.
Not the most interesting photos today, mostly because the others that I took either were redundant or didn't frame or focus the way I wanted them to. Oh well. I guess that's part of the process.
Weekend went fast -- not even remotely ready to get back to work tomorrow. Blargh.
Oh, and gong xi fa cai!
Saturday, January 24, 2009
Friday, January 23, 2009
I may have mentioned that 2008 was a pretty mixed year... although my current theory is that the awesomest part of 2008 was actually just the tail end of the mostly super-awesome 2007, or perhaps to reframe, we had a glorious year of the boar, and the year of the rat mostly sucked balls.
Anyway, here we go.
- 3 weeks in Hawai'i. (January -- tail of year of the Boar) Totally ruled.
- All-Balboa weekend in Cleveland -- great fun.
- Completed the Cape Cod marathon in 4:08:30
- New President! w00t!
- a week in Italy with my parents. A little rushed, but overall good.
- ankle injury that has put me out of commission 6 weeks and counting.
- saying goodbye to our cat in December after he went through the final stages of kidney failure. He'd been my buddy for 16 of the 17 years that I've lived in New England. We are still sad.
- Total days sick: 38 (Two spans, including combo bronchitis/sinusitis in July and most of the entire month of my birthday and up to the day of the marathon.)
- Birthdays of consequence: 1 (Let's just say that I am no longer in my 30s, and that this has not proven to be a good thing to date.)
- Cities visited: Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Chicago, Cleveland, Raleigh, Florence, Venice, Rome, Honolulu, Hilo, Lihue, Manhattan, Fergus, Buffalo, Kansas City
- States Visited: 9 (CA, HI, IL, KS, NC, NH, NV, NY, OH)
- Countries Visited: 2 (Canada, Italy)
- Airplane legs: 31
- Concerts attended: 3 (80s punk bands: 1)
- Miles run: 806 (in 6 states)
- Weddings attended: 3
- Dance workshops attended: 2
- Ultimate frisbee tournaments: 4
- Ultimate frisbee tournaments (>200mi away): 2
- Ultimate Frisbee tournament injuries: 1
- (tournaments >200mi away, lifetime: 6)
- (injuries at tournaments >200mi away, lifetime: 3)
- Awesome people to be married to: 1 (makes it all better.)
Thursday, January 22, 2009
Taken while icing during physical therapy. A quieter moment, feeling pretty good about the session, before the day took a dive into the shitter.
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Actually, it was still pretty cold today, but it warmed up enough mid-day for the icicles that had formed on one of the office mill buildings to crumble.
I wasn't really happy with today's photos in general; this was the best of the bunch that wasn't overly redundant (already had some pictures of the Pho restaurant that I frequent. The ones in the office just didn't come out the way I wanted them to.)
With work as it is, this project is going to get tricky. Not sure how I'm going to find things that are interesting. As far as CED goes, I might take a sketch break after I eat, but most of tonight needs to be devoted to work. Which kinda sucks, especially given the big deal that went on today.
Monday, January 19, 2009
It's been a mildly frustrating day -- just little things, but enough to have me a bit on edge. Tai Chi class was a good counter-balance, even if part of the reason I was so rattled was from fighting traffic and looking for parking to get there. And, I seem to have lost my art journal in the process.
I'm not sure what the universe is trying to tell me. But I'm trying to will myself to take a breather and get a little perspective.
Still squeezing in time to do some sketching; more portraits... speaking of which, I find that as soon as I've picked a subject in the wild, they move or switch positions. And I'm just not fast/good enough yet to deal. Not sure if part of my problem is that I'm doing these journal drawings in pen. (that just happens to be a constraint I've put on myself, at least for now -- trying to manage shading, contours and textures with this unforgiving medium to see if I can learn how to work with and/or around it. I did do some sketching in another sketchbook with a drafting pencil.) Anyway, I'd welcome suggestions and/or perspectives on dealing with this.
Sunday, January 18, 2009
Saturday, January 17, 2009
Friday, January 16, 2009
Thursday, January 15, 2009
We're still finding cat hairs on our clothes -- even things that we've acquired since we had to say goodbye to our kitties. Case in point, the orange-ish hairs I've found on the new black fleece jacket I got for Christmas.
He's gone, but still with us, in ways.
We miss him.
My brain continues to place expectation in strange places when I'm walking around the house.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Playing with the loupe magnifier; taken with 15x magnification with the macro setting enabled on the camera.
I'm definitely finding it difficult to get decent lighting and have been noticing that focusing is very sensitive to offset and angle between the lens and the loupe.
Not much else to report. Went to PT for my ankle this morning. Work is busy. It's cold. Just taking a few photos and doing a few little sketches because there isn't much time or opportunity to do much else.
That's pretty much it. See ya tomorrow.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Was hoping to play with the loupe today or at least get a picture of the icicles outside the office, but I caught a glimpse of the shrub underneath our broken downspout, covered with snow and a thick coating of ice, so there you go.
Good thing, too, since the icicles I wanted to capture had fallen under their own weight last night and I didn't physically leave the building (not even for lunch) until well after dark. Oh well. I'm a little worried that these ice and snow pictures are going to get old real soon, but they'll do for now.
Monday, January 12, 2009
So my loupe magnifier showed up in the mail today, so I'm looking forward to playing with my macro photography. I got the idea to order one after admiring the macro photos taken my tanakawho, who explains how she gets her amazing images with simple a point-and-shoot and a selection of loupes.
Good thing, too, since I got out of the office late tonight and all of my photos of the icicles outside the building looked like crap.
Sunday, January 11, 2009
Still trying to capture some element from the day, although starting to doodle a little bit on the side as well. Did some sketching elsewhere, and will probably integrate some of Leah's cool suggestions for adding other stuff into the journal.
Saturday, January 10, 2009
Friday, January 09, 2009
Thursday, January 08, 2009
Wednesday, January 07, 2009
Snow, freezing rain and ice pellets last night followed by freezing rain throughout the day leads to one slushy mess.
I shoveled the walks and driveway this afternoon (and cleared off the car) because I was worried that it would freeze tonight and be even more of a pain to deal with tomorrow morning, but I often stop and wonder whether I'm doin' it wrong.
Although I've been here for almost 20 years, I'm not from around here originally. Was I supposed to just let it melt? It *was* raining after all, and I didn't really see anybody else bothering. Although it's hard to gauge from the neighbors who drive buhgiant trucks that just drive over the mess.
Murphy's (and TallAsianDude's) Law would suggest that if I didn't shovel, it would freeze tomorrow and the mailman, and half the neighbors would slip on the resulting ice and sue my sorry ass.
Sometimes, it's better to be safe (if a little foolish) than sorry.
Tuesday, January 06, 2009
[Photo taken playing with motion and a slightly longer exposure]
We put up Christmas lights in the living room tonight.
Yes, on January 6th. (We found the lights in the attic last week, and thought it would be a nice touch for a going-away party this weekend.)
The SOOTTAD actually wanted to put up some lights outside too (lights that we bought just before Christmas). She says that outside holiday lights should be up for the whole winter. I'm not adamantly against it, but I'm feeling a bit too lazy to want to deal with it, and thankfully, she was ok with dropping the idea after she was reminded that we don't have an outside outlet.
Monday, January 05, 2009
So this is part of my plan to keep up with my drawing for this challenge -- a small dayplanner calendar. It addresses a bunch of things that I found to be difficult the first time I tried to do one of these art every day things.
Because I can carry it around with me, I always have something that I can draw in. I also like having a record of things all in one place. I understand that some of the fun of this challenge (and of exploring creativity) can be to find new and unusual places to create art -- business cards, notebooks, napkins... you name it. (And other ways of thinking about what is art and what it is to be creative.) And I need to stop worrying about how things will turn out, and one of the easiest ways to do that is to draw on stuff that I know will be thrown away. But when I drew in different sketchbooks and journals, it felt less like a consolidated project, which somehow didn't feel as satisfying to me. I should probably just get over it. I think I will. But I think I'll do that in addition to the calendar.
Anyway, the calendar also a physical object that reminds me that I want to be drawing. I'm hoping that it will help get me into the right headspace to draw. And the smaller space and lines makes me worry less about drawing something "worthwhile." I'm hoping it'll let me play a bit.
I've noticed I've already turned it into something of a journal, recounting something that happened or something I did during the day. Hopefully I won't fall into a pattern and feel obligated to keep it up, although it's kind of fun to treat it that way right now.
So... so far, so good. Although I realize that the first few days have been easy -- a holiday, only one work day, and a weekend. I haven't had to balance this with my usual juggernaut of other activities. When everything else kicks in, that's where the real challenge will start. Hopefully it will be the break from the chaos rather than a burden or chore that's taking away from other things that I want to be doing.
Fortunately, the ice was already melting when I left the house this morning, so there was no scraping required. I did, however, almost slip and fall on my ass on the way out of the house.
Sunday, January 04, 2009
Yep, another picture of food. Good thing I could break the pattern yesterday, or I'd feel an increasing pressure to make this 365 days of photos of food.
Saturday, January 03, 2009
So you may have noticed all the posts recently with the weird titles. It's probably obvious, but I kinda decided to try this whole "Project 365" thing that's been bouncing around the interwebs -- basically, take a photo a day for a whole year. Anyway, I'm going to try to take pictures every day and plan on posting a daily photo. As some of you may have already noticed, there will be some fudging of posting dates, mainly because I've got some latent OCD and want the posting date to match the photo date. But really, it'll be just the posting date. We'll see how THAT goes.
But wait, there's more!
Just to relive my overachieving college days, I'm also going to try to do some drawing every day. (which will maybe evolve into some bigger creative projects) A few years ago, I participated in a thing called Art Every Day Month that was started by my friend Leah. She's gone on to inspire a great many people to express their creativity and now has started a creative every day challenge. Basically, do something creative every day, and recognize the creativity in the things you are doing.
I suppose I'd already have my bases covered taking daily photos, so I'd get credit or something without having to do the extra work... but the whole point is that I want to work on my drawing, so... I guess there you go.
It feels like I'm making New Year's Resolutions, and I guess I sort of am, even though me and Resolutions parted ways a long time ago... and I was happier for it. But 2008 really went sour towards the end there, and it's still left a bad taste in my mouth. (To start with, I'm still broken, and the lack of activity isn't helping.) Anyway, it seemed like a good thing to give myself some goals, keep myself occupied, focus my energy... and maybe some good will come of it.
We'll see how it goes.
And maybe I'll try running another marathon in the fall.
[still to come... 2008 year in review.]