Latest Posts

Life Gets In the Way, or, Fiddling While Rome Burns

Today I am trying to figure out how to draw in spite of my crazy anxiety about how much I have to do in my life and for the business (www.sundialwire.com).  And after I typed that sentence I thought, “To hell with that!” and went into the sunroom (studio, such as it is) and finished the picture I’d started at the last Sundial Still Life Sunday.   Here’s what I got done during that Sunday session:

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Dr. Sketchy’s

One reads a lot about how going out of your comfort zone boosts your creativity.  I don’t know if that’s the case with the activity described here.

A few years ago a friend told me about Dr. Sketchy’s.  It is themed drawing sessions in a bar with the models whittling down their costumes to nearly nothing as the evening winds down.  Burlesque, purposely strange and amusing.  You can see how it all started (in NYC), and why, at the Dr. Sketchy’s FAQ.  Note that the Northampton branch is not nearly as snazzy as the pictures on the official Sketchy’s page would indicate that at least some of the other branches are.  Dr. Sketchy’s Northampton is decidedly funky, but that’s a compliment.

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Elusive Creativity, Valentine’s Day

I think about creativity, or more often, the lack thereof, all the time.  Especially because it is a thing that I desperately want in spades and that I’m desperately afraid I don’t have in any really good way.  I mostly think I have some creativity, but it’s the mediocre kind at best.  But I have also not given up on the idea that I’ve got it, buried somewhere.  I just have to keep trying to find it.

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the expected and the unexpected

Last Sunday I finally held the first “Sundial Still Life Sunday”.  (Sundial is part of the name because Sundial Wire is the name of the business Jim and I run –see www.sundialwire.com — and because it is the venue for the group since my “studio” is the sunroom at home, about 8′ x 10′ and doubling as the home paperwork-processing center as well — not even big enough for one.)

It has taken me over a year to go from having the idea to actually sending out an email and inviting people.  There were four of us, including one who hadn’t drawn in ages and one who whips lovely paintings out in a flash with seemingly no effort.

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Amsterdam, Day 9, Haarlem and Droog

We went to out Waterlooplein Metro stop this morning, near the “Stopera”, combination state house and opera. Jim had read about this line in the sidewalk outlining the perimeter of an orphanage for Jewish children, which was emptied by the Nazis, all the children sent to camps.  Another sobering reminder.  When we were in Paris in 2007, there were many plaques showing where people had been killed during the war.  While sad and disturbing, it is good to see these kinds of commemorations and reminders.

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Enlarge any picture by clicking.

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Amsterdam, Day 8, Van Gogh Museum and Concert Gebouw

We spent from 10:00 to 3:30 at the Van Gogh Museum. It is very nicely laid out, with his work going chonologically. There were sufficient descriptions, but not too many. What’s really lovely is that no photography is allowed (and we saw only two people taking illegal pictures). So there are people listening to their audio tours who will stand in a prime viewing spot for a painting for what seems way too long, but no jockeying for position for the best angle to take a photo, no selfie sticks, and while it was crowded, not nearly as crowded as New York museums seem to be without exception all the time now.

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