Drawings of everyday life

Posts tagged “postaweek2011

Some thoughts on challenges, drawing and blogging

M. February 12th
Since I am a member of the ‘blogging without obligation’ – tribe, I will not apologize that I didn’t blog for four months. I would like to share some thoughts, though, about not having blogged for a while.

In 2011 I committed myself to drawing every day, blogging every week and I challenged myself to draw my partner 100 times. I didn’t blog every week, bur I’m very satisfied with 43 posts in one year. Committing myself to drawing every day, made me draw about 2 till 5 times a week and I am very satisfied with that too. It resulted in a lot of JKPP-drawings and this pile of diaries.
My drawing diaries: July 2010 till January 2012

In January I reached my goal of drawing my partner 100 times, for 2012 I didn’t commit myself to blog every week. After January I didn’t post anymore and I almost stopped drawing. I said to myself: maybe it is good to stop for a while, to reflect on drawing. Why do I draw? Well, after ‘reflecting’ for four months I do not have a clue. My conclusion is that thinking about drawing without drawing is not very insightful. I do know that I need some activities in which I do not ‘think’. And I do know that I need a challenge, routine or whatever to keep me drawing. At the moment I can’t think of another challenge than to start blogging again every week. So…see you next week.

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Julia Kay’s Portrait Party

Barb Wright for JKPPDonna McMenamin for JKPPBlue Sky Day / Sandy for JKPPDalton de Luca for JKPPPenny Van Horn for JKPPNiyousha for JKPPDJDG by Barien & Grietje for JKPPAnnalucinka for JKPP by Grietje

One week ago Michael Nobbs tweeted: “Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful! @paulienmaria has been working little and often and produced 94 portraits http://ow.ly/7SGjA Michael promotes the Sustainably Creativite tool: the little and often mantra: “Little and often” is for me a gentle reminder to keep moving forward using small regular steps.”

I have seen his approach in two self-help books and it really helped me a lot. While writing my Master thesis in 2005, I sticked to the advice of Joan Bolker in her book Writing Your Dissertation in Fifteen Minutes a Day. Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy, or SARK as she is known, calls it “micromovement”: tiny steps that add up to a big difference. She writes about it in her book Make Your Creative Dreams Real.

Last weeks I mainly concentrated on drawing portraits for Julia Kay’s Portrait Party (JKPP) on Flickr: “This group is a virtual Portrait Party in which artists draw each other from photos posted for that purpose. All members of the group are therefore both subjects of portraits and creators of portraits.” I counted my JKPP portraits and found out I made 116 since I started one year ago. I didn’t make any goals and in JKPP there are no expectations: you can draw as much or as little as you want. Fellow JKPP’er Erica Smith wrote on Facebook when she passed the 100 JKPP portraits: “Drawing this many portraits really crept up on me, it wasn’t hard!” That’s exactly my experience.


Phd defense on Roma

Phd defense of Huub van Baar: The European Roma
Last Wednesday I visited the Phd defense of Huub van Baar at the University of Amsterdam. His dissertation is titled The European Roma: Minority Representation, Memory, and the Limits of Transnational Governmentality. I made a documentary film about a Roma (gipsy) family in 1998, so the topic interests me. His dissertation has more affinity with my interest in women’s and cultural studies though, and if I want to know more about the concept ‘governmentality’ his dissertation will probably the thing to read.


This is what my Mac harddisk looks like

Hard Disk
My computer didn’t work anymore properly since the beginning of August. I deleted everything, installed everything back. Then it worked for a few weeks. Then again I had to use the ‘disk utility’ program to ‘repair’ the disk. Then it worked for a few weeks, and then again the same troubles which took me some days to solve.

Last week I brought it to a shop where somebody replaced the hard disk. I drew the old hard disk, before I will throw it away. I paid a little more than 200 euro’s and I have 300 Gb’s more than on my old hard disk. Now it works perfectly for already a week 🙂


Blogging without obligation

Playground and portrait in my journal
I have the ‘blogging without obligation’ logo and the ‘post a week’ logo on this blog. Is this contradictory? Probably. They are both useful for me, though. ‘Blogging without obligation’ is an idea by tiffini elektra x: “After coming across what seemed to be the 4000th or so post on someone’s blog starting with “I’m sorry I haven’t posted in awhile.” I decided it is time to rethink what makes a good blog and the expectations that have come to be part of it. I am thinking that no one should utter those words again . . .and with that thought I give you Blogging Without Obligation.” I really agree with her idea. It is very difficult though to not start to talk about not having blogged.


My daughter asleep

Barien asleep in Brussels
I did draw my daughter while we were in a hotel room. When she is asleep I’m able to draw her while she is not moving.


Watercolor pencil and a wet finger

Anna Black for  JKPP
I bought for my 9-year-old daughter the dutch translation of the book ‘Drawing for the Artistically Undiscovered’ by Quentin Blake and John Cassidy. It is a fun book and my daughter loves to draw in it. Blake advises to use a watercolor pencil and then rub over it with a wet finger. I like the simplicity of it and used it in this drawing of Anna Black. It seems as a good starting point for me to discover the use of color.


View on the river Merwede

View at the river Merwede from my parent's attic
I somehow lost the habit of drawing every day. Well, I almost never drew every day, but the intention of drawing every day made me draw at least 3 or 4 times a week. The last weeks I forgot to draw even those 3 or 4 times though. Then I remembered Julia Kay and her habit of drawing every day. So I took my journal and didn’t think about what I could draw, didn’t look at Flickr, email, twitter, FB, newspapers and other digital and analog distractions, and started to draw the view I saw regularly the first 18 years of my life. It is the view from my parents house on the river the Merwede.


Travel journal

These are three pages from my travel journal this summer.
Pushkin statue in Sint Petersburg
Pushkin statue and my daughter
Boat from Sint Petersburg to Stockholm
The boat from Sint Petersburg to Stockholm
Sergstorg, Stockholm, August 2011
Stockholm.


What am I doing?

My brother Ianus working together with his friend / colleague Aldo
During our relaxed afternoon in the park, during the JKPP meetup in Brussels, Marga asked me how I do draw my drawings. Do I know in advance what I’m going to do?

Sometimes I have no idea at all and I just start somewhere. Most of the time I have some idea about what I want to draw and how I place on the page. During the drawing things always work out differently. Because people move. Because I planned to draw four people, but only three fit on the page. So mostly I just start somewhere and then find out where I will end up.

In this drawing I planned to draw both my brother and his friend, but during the drawing I realized that if I draw the real size of the space between the two, my brother’s friend will not fit on the page, so in the drawing I reduced the distance between them.