Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Evolution

Every day for the past week or so I've been struck with that elusive and magical and completely wonderful creative energy that sometimes I'm convinced has taken a permanent leave of absence. Lately when I catch it, it's to make photos or a drawing...but beautifully, miraculously, it's been writing this time. Two days in a row I woke up and wrote a new poem. I've been pulling out my my ideas book a few times every day, jotting down a line or I think of and revisit it later. I haven't done that since high school, but here I am! For now, on my days off between graduation (!) and when I start working, I'm relaxing, watching bad comedy after bad comedy, reading The Hour I First Believed (Wally Lamb) and making time for hashing out my creative ideas. Vacation couldn't be better.

Just a freewrite on my creativity

Something changed in me. I used to fear the worse, dread the inevitable, shake my head and swear on a daily basis that my craziness was going to be the death of me. I’d look in private at my journals and drawings, which more often than resulted in my sinking feelings. There was too much competition, I’d think. Everyone else is so talented, what on earth is going to make me stand out? How can I even call myself an artist when my pencil marks are showing and I can’t draw a human face to save my life? How can I put that label on myself if I’m so unsure? I tore myself down, thought up two bad things for every good, drowned occasionally in my anxiety and pulled myself out struggling. And I can’t say what changed. Maybe it’s that I’m graduating, or had a recent life turnaround, or maybe I’m just growing up. Maybe it’s because I stopped taking all those pills I thought I needed. But suddenly, the world is clearer. I feel better. I’ve never felt so pleased with myself. I find myself looking through my portfolios or my drawing books and smiling. I want to show people! The other night my roommate and I had his friends over for a night of movies and drinks, and I found myself pulling out portraits I’ve drawn, pointing to my photos on the fridge, and beaming like my own proud parent. Maybe that’s it: now that my parents and I are no longer inextricable, I’ve finally figured out how to be proud for myself. I don’t want to have a big ego, or to annoy the people around me by gushing about myself, but I don’t want to apologize for my inadequacies, either. Those days are over. I like my pencil marks! Why on earth was I apologizing in the first place?
Some days I feel like a floodgate’s been opened in my mind and the creative ideas are overflowing. Those days are good. But there are also the days that nothing comes to me; my creativity has taken a leave of absence. My old self would have wallowed on those days, thought, “this is it, it’s gone forever, I’ve got to rearrange myself and swallow everything.” My newer self can deal with it. I’ve been really off and on lately- it feels like I’m all or nothing. And those days when it’s nothing? Well, I’m kissing my little creative elf goodbye in the morning, sending her off to school with a packed lunch and thinking, “I’ll see her this evening.” And weirdly, it’s been true. When I just accept that today isn’t my day and my drawings look uninspired or my texts are contrived, I settle into something else and wait for her to come back. She always does.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Stadium Love

I need to work on my Senior Evaluation and my children's book...
but I am writing this instead and blasting the new Metric CD.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Groundwork

Things are new, drastic.
Did you know that I'm single now? Long story.
Did you know that I got a new job? It's at a catering company, and I'm basically a prep chef. I'm a little scared of losing a finger, but so far all I've got is a puncture wound in my palm from a dull paring knife.
Did you know that I'm graduating in a month?
I'm supposed to save my tax check for necessities like car insurance and you know, food, but I'm thinking instead of a new tattoo. That seems much more appropriate. I'm reeling lately! My whole world is slightly askew! I sometimes feel like I'm looking through a stereoscope; the depths are all off, the picture's a little blurry. But I'm excited, and my prospects are all over the place. I'm spending a lot of time reconnecting with some of my favorite people, frantically checking things off my to-do list, and waiting for my senior project to be over with (FRIDAY. OMG).
Since I'm couch surfing I'm without a computer, which is easy but inconvenient. And even though I really want to upload photos I've been taking, I can't. Instead, I check out laptops for two-hour intervals on campus and plug in my headphones, trying to cram all my work into an awkward amount of time. I've been listening to The Wrens a lot (time-machine to junior year of highschool? Sure, why not), as well as Stars, The Stills, TV on the Radio, Radiohead, and a Beirut album I can't figure out the name of. Times like these call for comfort music, all the old favorites and albums I never get tired of. But god, I wish I had some extra money for a few new CDs.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Concert madness

I never really go to show anymore, but this month I've been a fiend for bar concerts and house shows of local artists. Here's a list of who I've seen in the past few weeks:

Adam's (my platonic soulmate) band, Order of the Crimson Wizards (show here). They pretty much melted my face off.
Crossfox: I don't know these guys but their show was incredible. I'm going to another of theirs on Tuesday for free.
Queen Amina: Arlo's band
Ten Killing Hands: Chris' band, who I somehow never saw before
Yogoman Burning Band: holy jesus, this was danceable.
Apollo Ghost: don't know these guys either but they ruled the hosue show
Police Teeth: definitely worth it
Addition: always a good show.
Nicole Zapel at Three Trees Coffeehouse. This was especially rad because I didn't even know my dear friend was a musician until recently. AND SHE IS INCREDIBLE.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Desert and the Polar Opposite


DSC_0233, originally uploaded by Little Box.

Maybe it's not exactly polar opposite, but coming back to Bellingham after 8 days in Moab wasn't exactly pleasant. I was desperately in need of some new scenery, some fresh thoughts and a chance to come back to a place I missed instead of hated. As much as Bellingham is impossible to be in sometimes, it felt good to come home (even amongst the soggy skies and bad drivers). But my trip gave me exactly what I hoped it would, and now I'm working on some journals channelling Maira Kalman to try and put words and pictures to the task of describing the dreamscape I woke up in for a week.

The trip was bizarre, mostly because it was so foreign and I was constantly learning new things about the landscape. The scale of the mountains and cliffs were impossible to judge since you could see miles in every direction. Distances looked dwarfed, trees stunted, rock faces undaunting (until you found yourself at their foothills). Inclines I wouldn't dream of climbing were surprisingly easy to shimmy up, sandstone was warm and welcoming. The rock structures seemed like celebrity houses- surprise succulent gardens grew zenlike out of rock that looks inhabitable, natural staircases and handrails weave luxuriously through the terrain. Caves and natural rock sculptures dot the landscape and art is everywhere; hundreds of differently textured rock slabs lay haphazardly along the ground, recalling the days that this desert was an ocean and ripples and waterdrops etched permanent into sandstone.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

WHAT

How am I 21 already?

Also, tonight is going to rule.