Tuesday, April 28, 2009

34 in 30 Day: I love you.

Sometimes I have sooo much love inside me to share that all I can do is say it out loud to whomever and whatever is listening. Sounds crazy since I am alone often, but it makes perfect sense because I AM alone so often. After all, what can it hurt? Or I can say it via here, online, text. Today my world was full in a very humbling and human way. I am enlightened, awake, aware, tired and loved.
My art for today was not "art" at all. But it was for me. I am going to get all hippy on your booty now and say this: "Art is Love" and "Love is Art".
To unconditionally love takes a skill of sort, a talent. Love. What it means to everyone is different. Regardless, we all want to be loved. I love helping people, I love being helped. I love sharing, growing, healing, feeling and believing. I could go on and on and on with this stuff today, trust me, so I best get to my point.

Today I went to work for a woman I met via Craigslist not long ago. She was looking for a vegetarian chef to cook in her home a few times a month. She is fighting an illness called "CMT":


She is trying to improve her health through healthy eating. I had the honor of working for her last month once. Let me just tell you, she is the sweetest woman ever. Just being around her makes you feel warm and welcome. She is one of the nicest people I have met since moving to Astoria. After cooking for her, the one time, I went out of town and returned only to be sick with the flu for 2 weeks. In that time she was diagnosed with breast cancer.
I hadn't really heard from her, so I assumed that right now with everything going on, having a cook wasn't really a priority, which I completely understood. Because I had only cooked for her once, I was a little nervous about calling her to see how she was. I knew she had a lot of family and supportive friends around, and figured sending her thoughtful messages now and then would be good enough. I didn't want to be a bother.
A few days ago, I got a message from her asking if I would be interested in cleaning and shopping for her, as well as cooking twice a week. Of course I was very happy about this not only for my financial sake, but also because working for her makes work something to look forward to. Today was my 'first' day. It was soooo nice. My body is tired, but my heart is full. This woman is a true fighter and such an inspiration to be around. I can't explain it, but I leave her home feeling better about life.

She hasn't cried at all since finding out she has breast cancer. She's been busy arranging, planning, making appointments....the list goes on. She is going into surgery next week to have the lump removed and there are so many precautions she has to take before and after. Because of the CMT, the procedure will be more difficult, to a very scary level. Today was a "bad" day for her, which I was humbled by with how much she was getting done and how positive she was. I could tell that she was in "fight or flight" mode. She wakes up and goes goes goes and does does does.... She hasn't given herself a chance to cry and really let go.

Today when I was prepping some tempeh for her she came in and said "Can I have a hug?" I immediately gave her the biggest hug I could without hurting her. My eyes welled up and I was totally touched. I was flattered and honored to be able to be there for her. And she repeatedly said how grateful she was to have me there. She mentioned she needed a good cry. I hope I was able to help her release some of what she is storing. I needed that hug, too.

To love unconditionally is amazing. It seems like this world has lost it's touch. We are all so skeptical and paranoid, not to mention the lack of trust we have with others. The world needs more hugs.
Random hugs.

Today my art was something not seen with the eyes but something shared and felt.

I feel really glad to be alive today, to be able to help someone and feel some sort of purpose to where I am right now. It's been rough since having West Nile and the last few weeks with new freaky symptoms, my energy has been low and my mood even lower.
I am lucky to know this woman and to share a small part of her life in any way I can.

I know my blogs have been kind of crappy. Quickly written, typos, poor grammar... I am sorry. You have to understand my brain goes much faster than my little hands can type at 45 words per minute.
After all, I am an artist.
And I am positive you've heard about us "artist types".
Something up for discussion another time.)
It's not that I only care a half-assed amount, it's that my brain cares about too many things at once. Adult ADD? Hormones? Caffeine? Who knows, but it's just one more little bit of the grab bag of personality traits that makes up Amy M. Willis.

Ok, I need to wash thine face and breathe a while.

Be well and make sure to randomly say "I love you" out loud.
It will be your art assignment for the day.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

34 in 30 are we there yet? Part 2

Just another drawing to add to today's forecast.

34 in 30 are we there yet?

April has been one intense month! What a ride, that's for sure. From birthdays to never ending flu bugs, sunburns to freezing, wet toes. April has been something.
Which is always better than nothing, I always say.
I had hoped to get a lot more painting done this month.
But dang it if I am not happiest doodling right now! I found Pandora and I have loved my coffee, never ending great music and doodling my heart out. Taking a break to give loves to my fluffy doggy and taking trips out to the garden spot for a little digging in the soil action.
It's just the way it's worked.
I really need new paint, I think that's the big part of the non painting status.
I have painted a little, but I just don't have the paint I need for the ideas I have. I have to wait a few more days until I can "re-up". So doodling and drawing has been my thing as of late and I am really happy with what I have been doing.

The lady in the ship is called "Ship Away" and I am not sure if I am going to cut the image out and paste on to fabric or if I will use it as a painting idear, but I love it. The other image of the 3 small doodles: (from L-R) "Involuntary" "Good day, Bad day" and "Magic Cloak". Pretty much sums up how I felt this weekend...? Which means I have use my art as therapy and it feels like it's working. :)

Enjoy the last of April. It only gets sunnier and brighter from here. Buckle up.

Amy :)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

34 in 30 day 22

Happy Earth Day!

I hope you have had as much fun as I have in the recent Spring-like weather. I wore a skirt yesterday, without long socks or tights and it was nice to go out in my skirt and work in the garden, Sun beaming away at my pale legs. It was nice.
My garden space is a lot of work-as it turns out.
We had to clear out a few really sick bamboo trees. I hated to do that, but they were basically dead and dying. The soil will benefit greatly from plants that will thrive better in this certain location. After clearing out the bamboo, then there is the picking through all of the nasty old soil filled with garbage and broken glass. It's just awful how badly this place has been neglected. The landlord keeps hinting that we should buy it...nope. I can see daylight through the basement walls and there are plants growing through the basement flooring. It really does have a lot of potential, but with that potential comes a lot of moolah. Cold hard cash that this booty just doesn't have right now. So now we are at the stage where we can start planting starts and seeds. I am going to have a nice, raised bed with wildflowers and herbs surrounding it. Simple. That's been my art for the last few days. I counted that the week prior I created 15 new illustrations. Not bad not, bad!

I took some photos this weekend of this really pretty place in Washington, located off of Willapa Bay. There was a tiny park and a boat ramp, next to a few docks and a handful of boats. It was quiet, sunny, blue and beautiful. I seriously could have existed there allll day. I was able to take a few photos before my batteries died. :( Boooo.
We continued our drive South on the 103 and along the way, every now and then, there were these huge rusty gates with ginormous sculpted lions perched on both sides of the gates! It was so bizarre. We were in the middle of a huge nature reserve, but there were all of these gates to mysterious houses. It was very Lion, Witch and Wardrobe-ish.
Monday, on 4/20/09, we spent the sunny day on Indian Beach, with is off of Ecola. It's the area where Louis and Clark's expedition ended. This area is rich with history. I took quite a few photos. One photo in particular shoud ring a bell for all of you "Goonies" fans.

That's all I have to offer for today. :) Be well!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

34 in 30 day 18

I have no idea what the date really is. :) I will just go with what I feel is the date in order to keep some form of chronological list of sorts.

So here are some more doodles. I am sorry for the crappy images your eyes have to look at, I have shaky hands. I need a scanner, that's for certain.

I am going out to the beach for some time in the sun, listening to the waves and getting some much needed cabin fever releasing exercise. Okay, I know I am reposting a few of these, I will change my redundant ways when I get home. I am out tha doooooor!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

34 in 30 day 17 part 2!

I've got the doodlebug.

34 in 30 day 17

Something for today:

"The Bird Whisperer"

Mixed Media (fabric, glue, colored pencil, ink)
2 inches x 3 inches

I am going to frame this little pretty pretty and it will be available on my Etsy page, soooooon.

Have a lovely weekend!

Friday, April 17, 2009

34 in 30 day 16

I have these small frames I found at a thrift store a while back. They are a little beat up, and that quality seems to add to their charm. Also a while back, Casey gave me a package of Bristol artist trading cards, which just so happen to fit the frames nicely.

What o' what will I do with these things?

Happy Weekend!

34 in 30 day 16

Joy Springs Eternal WIP

So this pose, this odd "what is she doing?" pose is taken from a dancing magazine. When the painting is done, I will give you more of a detailed description of what, where and who... in short, for curiosities sake, the idea was taken from a photo of dancer. In the photo, she is dancing in a yellow, youthful springtime dress with these cute purple and red socks. I loved it and wanted to interpret it in my painting. I hope to start a series of paintings inspired by these absurdly beautiful photos of these dancers striking remarkable poses. Each painting will give the photographer credit and also give the background of the dancer. I have changed the color of the hair, and the background to suit my interpretation. And, being that I am not great or even remotely confident with life drawing, my renditions will stay true to my style.

I am at the part of this painting where I look at it and say, "...oh what have I done. I hate this!". In the beginning, when it's just a sketch and looks simple and raw... I almost want to leave it at that. Completely minimal. But in my head, I picture it much differently and I love color. So I keep pushing forward. It's a lot like making a soup from scratch. When you just decide to make soup, no recipe. A little of this, a little of that. In your mind, you have an idea of what you want it to taste like, complete.
Add the wrong ingredient, and it throws the entire pot off. So you then have to compensate by adding other ingredients.... and on and on until you get the combination of flavor you were originally looking for.
I will be working on it all day again oday and hope to see it blossom in the direction my personal recipe requires.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

34 in 30 day 15

Joy Springs Eternal WIP Rough Draft.
I will blurb more later skater.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

34 in 30 day 12

Ok, so this whole "art a day" thing is wayyyy harder than I anticipated and I have the right to blame at least half of it on the gray weather.
O'the plight of the Sun in Spring!

Anyhow, I feel it is my duty to show proof of my creative spirit, even if it is not in paint form.

It's all coming together nicely. I will be excited to complete a few projects that have been swimming in my head.

Oh yeah, it was my 34th birthday on Friday. I spent it alone for the most part, it was low key and fine. Next year, I want to go dancing.

Birthday in a nutshell.

I wholeheartedly promise more from myself this next week. Now that the flu from hell has left my body, I can focus and get back on track.

Happy day to you!

Thursday, April 09, 2009

34 in 30 day 9!

Just wanted to upload a few photos from today :)
Also, I loaded my first contribution to www.postcrossing.com (the cartoonishy fish). That little fish has a key in it's belly, on their way to Finland! I can't wait to get my first postcard. Spreading good vibes!

Today I get my juicer and that is freaking fantabulous.
Mmmmmm.... Fresssshhh Juuuuuice.

Busy day, the sun breaks are nice. I don't mind if it's rainy and a little cold still, it's supposed to be. It's very nice to have the sun breaks.

Ta ta!

34 in 30 days ?day 9?

Hey, it's 5:ish in the morning. I can't be expected to remember anything. I know it is the 9th, so day 9.

Well, I think I am done with the bug. At least the worst parts... ugh. I hope so. Either I am getting a new cold, or it's allergy time. My poor nose. Boo!

With that said, I am still on top of my game. That's right, Willis is on it.
I've got my raw and ready to stretch canvas out and my gesso is FRESH! Tight.
I also have 12 little frames I purchased at the thrift store that I a going to fill with my artsy goodness. I am thinking birds for those little frames. They are roughly 2x3 inches. Super cute.

I think the first painting I am going to start is my Spring woman. I am thinking big. A nice pig painting. I want lots of colors and lots of texture.

Today I am going art supply shopping. My living room has been rearranged to accommodate whatever crazy needs I want. Space. Now if I could only get my apartment dog hair free without having to shave my very sweet doggy. Hmmmm..... I guess I will have to be neurotic about vacuuming for a while. Yay.

I am working on a little postcard I am making for www.postcrossing.com. This will be my first contribution and I can't wait to receive my first postcard. I love the idea of sending something handcrafted to someone I will probably never meet on the opposite side of the planet. In a sense, I am delivering peace between strangers from different countries at a time when peace is needed desperately. Love. It's all about unconditional love. I can totes do that. Oh crap. I said 'totes'...

So I had a dream the other night that there was this big, black spider in one of my black SAS shoes. I needed to put my shoes on, but this spider had really webbed the inside of my (i think) right shoe something good. It really wanted me to put my foot in my shoe, webbed and all. I didn't- are you kidding? It was super condensed webbing. Like, filled with cotton type webbing. There were other parts to the dream, but I don't remember anything but the spidery webbed shoe! Ewe! I just got the chills.

So sit tight my 4 followers and randoms that might actually read this. I hope to blow your freaking mind. Just not right now.


*Rough draft for Shoshone Falls painting. I am still finding my niche with landscape. Yikes!

Monday, April 06, 2009

34 in 30 days 5 and 6

Okay... almost done with this bug. I have been creating, I swear it. I have been sketching like mad, but haven't been documenting it. I am picky about documenting my sketches. I know what the end result should look like, you don't, and from most of my sketches you wouldn't know. :) Yay for lack of drawing skills!
I have to make this short again, because it's been a long day, I had a pre-birthday meltdown and I am still sick. I need to get well soon, so I can kick some canvas brush!

Today I am going to add a little doodle that I drew recently for a painting idea. It's called "The Bird who wanted to be an Astronaut.

I guess the idea is that even birds wish to be more. So many people have wanted to fly. To spread wings and take off through the air, swooping down, joining in formation with other birds... to be free. But birds, I imagine if this one wanted more.
Make sense? I don't know if my theraflu and special tea will allow me to make sense right now. My doggy is snoring, I am in my pj's, in bed and that ambiance alone is making my eyes droop.

I feel like that bird.

Be well,


Saturday, April 04, 2009

34 in 30 days 3 and 4

Poop. What can I say? I am pretty freaking sick, and it's slowly working its way out of my delicate system. I haven't been "normal" sick in years. I have been "West Nile" sick, but not just "flu" or "cold" sick. I almost welcome having something that is easily remedied. ALMOST.
I am certain I will be extending my 34 in 30 to accommodate my initial goal. I would like to think that I am strong enough to gesso, prep and paint while I am sick, but honestly, I am not. I feel beat. It's a bummer, but I am not going to dwell on it. I will just keep jotting down ideas and the moment I am well enough to produce, watch out!

Anyhoo, that's all I have for today.

Be well.


Thursday, April 02, 2009

34 in 30 day 2

Well, I was able to get up and get some things done today, even though my glands are a'swollen and my head is achin. It's all perspective, and mostly I was just tired of being in bed. So, a friend who is having a bout of bad luck stopped by and I was inspired to make some very soothing tea and a berry tart. It felt good to be in the warm kitchen. After he left I was inspired to mess with the camera a bit. So that is what I did and that is what I am offering today. My contribution to the creative world. In the end of this 30 days, I hope to pick 5 photos/digital art and make prints to frame. I am also going to make prints of original artwork (painting, mixed media, etc...) So while these photos may not feel like more than just photos, imagine them much larger, framed and nicely matted. It's all perspective and what one is open to believing in. Imagination. I have tons of imagination. A million and one pretty good ideas. I will share them with you one day at a time for the next 28 days.

Be well!


PS: See you soon Idaho o o o o o o o o o