Talking to some of my best friends yesterday must’ve inspired me #freelance #artist & #designer

I’ve been industrious all morning in a true Virgo rising, list making fashion. I didn’t feel like getting right to drawing, after finishing with my meditation & hermetics practices. Instead I planned, and worked on self promotion.

  1. Organized a new set of images for a Craig’s List ad.
  2. Made new image of the spec work I’ve been doing for a local bike group’s “kit”.
  3. Posted on: my design blog, my online portfolio, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter & Pinterest. Also updated the dropbox folder I made for this collaboration.
  4. While updating portfolio I decided it’s time for a new character design sample, and I’d already been planning on drawing Charlie again soon. I’m going to combine that with my drawing a day series (more like every two weeks) AND playing around with tarot card illustrations. We’d already decided he’s going to be the King of Cups. Rocco will be part of the illustration too, because I’ve got pet portraits floating about in the back of my mind. Plus all those mythical kings have dogs, and she’s his companion animal. Set up a drawing session with him for tomorrow. I need to do quick portrait studies: front, three quarters and profile. First you create the character, and then the composition.
  5. Wrote new copy for the CL ad, this time with ranges  of piece prices and hourly rates listed. Posted the ad.
  6. Set up a recurring weekly event in iCal to run an ad every week. I don’t have to re-do every time. I can just hit repost for awhile.
  7. Updated (organized) the categories for the design blog.

And now… trying to decide if I want to work out this afternoon or if I’ll take a “real” rest day, whether I should go downtown, walk the cat, work on the latest landscape / lifestyle piece…

Writing & studying in the morning is relaxing / my latest read

On my creative slacker existence & a little on my personal artistic process

Another late start today! I did a NB¹ yesterday. Despite that I wasn’t out of bed in time to see Ch off for work. I was gathering up my stuff for coffee time (glasses, phone, laptop, snot rag) and saw him drive off in the van. I waved. Toodles! So what will the renunciate hermit occupy herself with today? I’ll sit. I’ll repeat my mantra. I’ll work on The Deck, the latest thing.

I drag my heels when it comes to the “finishing”. I don’t want to commit. It’s not as fraught with danger as it used to be, when I was in art school and would sometimes “kill” a piece. I’d be going along and the composition would be balanced and healthy, and then I’d over work, realize things had gone wrong, keep working (with increasing desperation) until it was truly dead and then continue to flog it for some time.

Now it’s different. For one I’m not doing anything for approval or validation (“winning” the group critique, the solid As I pursued so vigorously). Now that I’m older and somewhat wiser I see all of the marks as valid in a way. I’m not so much making something as I am forming a record of my observances and actions. I’m also mixing media at will. Hardly anything I do is just one media. This is very new. There are no rules! This is because nothing really matters, anyone can see…

I’m finally ok-again with really working on something. After an intense session, it’s best to put it away, and not look at it at ALL, for a week. Even just 24 hours is hugely beneficial though, if your deadline doesn’t permit such a leisurely pace.


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I did make it to Powell’s yesterday, after having stopped for a vegan high school lunch at Veggie Grill and a new hoodie at Gap. I was looking for another historical, non fiction title actually, but this is about another student of Hermes Trismegestus, named and translated (saved) by the Greeks in 2 or 3rd century BC / also known as the ancient Egyptian god Thoth.

The star of our biography: Acarat, Count Cagliostro, otherwise known as Joseph Balsamo to the French, lived 1743 – 1795. Sentenced to life in prison at the end, by the good, old Inquisition. I’m pretty sure Franz Bardon got harassed by the god police at the end as well, but I haven’t found a bio of him yet.

Whatever you call him, our Count Cagliostro lead an amazing life. He seems both highly shady, and spiritually talented, in healing and other occult arts like very accurate psychic predictions. (I’m only on page 30 but I’m taking notes. When I read to study, I require physical books, as well as a pen and highlighter, lol.)


¹ no booze

Annoyances can be like games, tests of your powers of mental avoidance

Blocking shit out is a VIRTUE in hermetics.

You want to be able to focus on shit you want to attract and foster, and extremely honed focus is a skill that requires constant practice. I never heard of anyone really working on that in Astanga. In my experience, and observance of that world when I was in it, The Cult seems to mostly produce more obsessiveness and attachment. Useful tools though, the asana, when not fixated upon.

Super late start today! Granted I was hiding in my room from like 7pm on last night, avoiding jam night, indulging in a Magicians & tequila binge until midnight. Pretty sure my next episode is #11, and I’d started on 3 or 4. (Read & enjoyed all 3 of the books and I don’t much mind the made-for-TV elements of the show.) Since I can, I slept in until 9:30, not including temporary feline interruptions.

I’m going to take the bus downtown on a field trip today! Need a new hoodie FFS. I finally retired my beloved, worn to DEATH Aeropostale. Try as I might, I could never find a satisfactorily form fitting and heavy replacement. I’m pretty sure I only paid about $30, during one post Christmas sale about 10 years ago. I’d go there every winter and order up a ton of stuff. Charlie googled up an okay looking example at Gap this morning though, so I reserved one and I’ll go see. Maybe I’ll have lunch at Veggie Grill too…

I’m planning on “plein air” as soon as it gets into at least 50-degree weather.

Seriously WTF is up with all this New England weather in Portland this year? Le sigh. Too cold. But… look what’s on its way.

I know I just got my huge, studio easel back after 20 years, but the thing is I want to do more outside drawings and water media, including watercolor, watercolor, watercolor. I now have a shit ton of paint!¹ My old easel is mostly suited for oil painting, or acrylic if you can deal that. You also can’t lug it down to the waterfront to work on a touristy kind of promotional piece. I need to be doing more architecture. I should toss in some government buildings. I want to be downtown more again, and this is the kind of work I want to produce so…

I did a little bit of that last year – link 1, link 2, link 3 –  when I was tentatively getting going on spending longer amounts of time on drawings and making more of a commitment to a level of finish above “doodle”. These were volunteer illustrations for the cool, though unorganized Sustainable Today. It could’ve gone further, but then they wanted something on the level that should be billed for at least $5,000, and they waited too long to ask. Fall and winter last year I was still working frantically toward anything that could cover my second apartment, but all those efforts were not quite right. (At least she tried.)

Maybe all I need, eventually, is studio space downtown

I’ve got my doubts about oil painting working out downstairs in the dining room. It’s not a dedicated space and there would be ventilation and clean-up issues. Working in oil is also SO MUCH MORE EXPENSIVE. I’ve decided that the universe needs to pony up significantly first. All of my spiritual practices of the past six months are pointed in this direction, like an army of missiles. That’s what it’s all in service of, so we’ll see.


Maybe I’ll exercise tonight, maybe I won’t.


¹ Since I’ve started working in traditional media again, out here in Portland, I’ve decided that Utrecht is my favorite brand. Other companies make interesting novelty colors. I like some of the metallics and “shimmers”. But overall the consistency and spread is best in Utrecht. You don’t get all this oily goop that spits out.

 

 

Adversity can be good for your #meditation and thought control practices!

It gives you extra incentive to direct your thoughts elsewhere. It was really hard to settle today but I did and the art thoughts and joy bubbled through here and there.

I missed a day of meditation yesterday for the first time in over a month. I kind of wanted to just have coffee and chill out before I left for my new part-time job, and I totally meant to sit in the afternoon, but all the drama over the easel sort of negated that. At least I didn’t flip out and have a crying fit! I took action, and also an advil for the inevitable headache, helped Ch in the War Room for a little bit and went to bed early. 

Today I will draw. I’m working on “Her” a little bit and I want to rough out the beginning of a new idea that popped up during meditation. (If thoughts insist on popping up, which they will, artistic inspiration are the ones you want.) It’ll be an interior scene with at least one person and one pet (preferably both) in it.

I’ve got some good friends…

I’ve been so isolated sometimes I’m convinced I don’t have any at all, but then… I have been really letting it hang out on Facebook. I’ve got nothing to lose. I think it was either that or a complete freak out and I’m more interested in keeping my shit together.

Today was emotionally draining though

After two more equally lengthy & vicious nastygrams and several ignored calls, I got a comment from my NH friend who’d previously offered to go pick up the easel. It turns out she’s got both a corporate discount and an amenable shipping department at work. My last estimate from UPS was $600. Cathy thinks she can get it down to about half that.

I’d asked UPS to wait until tomorrow for my decision, but called them back immediately to tell them to hold it until Saturday. Apparently my mother had suddenly shown up, as they were preparing to close, saying she wanted to ship after all. These poor people stuck in the middle! They’d all been informed. Oh mam you don’t need to ask for anyone in particular. We all know about it. I then had to call her back & have an inane argument over the fact that she is not not allowed to pay for it. She’s to leave it. She’s out of the equation. End of story.

Hopefully I’ll be able to get it back together! I just couldn’t let it go. I’ve owned very little in life and I’ve been willing to let most of it go, but this was different. Part of me wonders if they gave such an inflated price because there was someone working there who was interested in taking it. Betty was trying to give it away!

The easel is symbolic of coming full circle

Whatever the fuck happens, I will get the bones of that easel out here to Portland. I never thought I’d do this. I don’t even have any oil or acrylic paints, not to mention all the other pile of supplies I’d need. I’m just going to give all the fight I’ve got left remaining into really, finally, being an artist. It won’t last long if the universe doesn’t throw me a goddamn bone already, hence the magical assistance I’ve been preparing.

I don’t think I’ll actually bother reading a book on narcissistic mothers. Not immediately anyway. I’d rather think about what I’m working on: the next illustration, the servitor, the next area of study in hermetics.

My #heartchakra got SERIOUSLY flooded today #meditation #masoniccompass #graveyards

I’m starting to get the hang of meditation, me thinks.

1/2 bhekasana, need to do yoga, old-fashioned magic & meditation journal, grimoire, leek pizza. I need to be an artist!! thoughtform. I’m already practicing further than the first exercise.

I haven’t added any practice from the hermetics book yet after all, except to try to make thoughts sort of solid, before returning to my focal point. I wanted to remember them later. So I’m starting off further out of the gate because it’s a 22min, formal sit in padmasana and then I go do some stuff (like putting in contacts) before getting to the remembering. I should add another session at night but the discipline is harder after beer 🙂


I did a little painting but… I think I need a bigger watercolor palette and also I’m not good at watercolor landscapes. I went a little nuts with it & had to put it away and have breakfast. I think it might look like a Rorschach test with colors.

It’d be GREAT to get my old easel from NH, but I’m not sure mom would be up to the task & it wouldn’t be cheap.


Still practicing the Lesser Banishing Ritual daily. I’m getting better at it, and the visualizations.

Yesterday Ch and I went to Riverview Cemetery and I gathered 3 different dirt samples for future years. The country’s first female cop is buried there, and she lived to be 97. Her energy would be perfect for reversals! But it was raining, at times pretty hard, and so we just wandered randomly. Didn’t find Lola but we didn’t really try all that hard.

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Took a particular liking to this tree, for some reason

I took one by a big, rough hewn monument whose name plate had fallen off without replacement. The wild card! I took a second by a huge sequoia and the last by a random guy’s marker with a Masonic compass on it. #YouReallyDOLearnSomethingEveryDay

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g

masonic-compass-copy

Therefore, the letter ‘G’ in Freemasonry signifies Gnosis, Generation and the Grand Architect.Gnosis (Greek for knowledge) in its simplest form is “knowledge of thyself” or the Great Arcanum, Daath (Da’ath – Hebrew for knowledge). Philo also refers to the “knowledge” (gnosis) and “wisdom” (sophia) of God. This fact we find in the biblical passage Proverbs 2.6; “The Lord gives wisdom (sophia), from his face come knowledge (gnosis) and understanding (sunesis).”

The single most identifiable symbol of Freemasonry. Both the square and compasses are architect‘s tools and are used in Masonic ritual as emblems to teach symbolic lessons.

The SQUARE is an instrument adapted for plane surfaces only, and therefore appropriate to Geometry, or measurement of the Earth, which appears to be, and was by the Ancients supposed to be, a plane. The COMPASS is an instrument that has relation to spheres and spherical surfaces, and is adapted to spherical trigonometry, or that branch of mathematics which deals with the Heavens and the orbits of the planetary bodies.

The SQUARE, therefore, is a natural and appropriate Symbol of this Earth and the things that belong to it, are of it, or concern it. The Compass is an equally natural and appropriate Symbol of the Heavens, and of all celestial things and celestial natures.

Oh and then we stopped for lunch at a small but very charming McMenamins (Fulton Pub) that we hadn’t been to before and when I saw this I knew I had to try it. (Was delicious. I got a pint.)

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That was a difficult #meditation! Good thing I took a look in there though

I should really be doing that every day again, but 22-minutes is hard. There’s a lot of energy in there I do my best to ignore… I couldn’t do 40-min right now. No way. It’d be so torturous it’d be counter reinforcement, you know, like a relentless barrage of constant petty criticisms.

I’m going to try to sit first thing every day, just the 22-min. Good old padmasana!! It really IS the best posture for meditation, if you’re set up for it. I guess I absorbed some of the ashtanga well. I’ve been thinking about it again! That’s some samskara going.

I’d done my cards, a 3-card spread of the Mary-El, but decided not to blog it. I don’t retain anything copying & pasting anyway! Charlie asked me for help yesterday, using his deck for the first time. I looked at the cards, thought about it & realized I only remember the broadest, vaguest ideas about them, hard to put into soundbites.

I was always an excellent student but 1) I cared and 2) I took hand written notes, then I re wrote them! So ya, copying & pasting is robot mode; I won’t remember it and it takes too much time. I say as I type this. This is different. #thoughts


Took a look at the latest goddesses. They are so almost done. No problem finishing today. Half the secret in watercolor is not doing. You do a little work and then you put it away to let the perception rest.