I’m collecting and arranging songs for a community theater Christmas show called Welcome Yule! It’s kept me from doing visual art, but here’s a look at my “studio” this past week:
I’m learning how to use Noteworthy to write scores, so I can set up recordings for cast members to practice with. Always feels good to learn new skills, despite the moments of aggravation!
In my study I have another cat-inspired piece that I made a couple of years ago, after the original cat tree was done.
I started with the crown of a bush that had a nest-like shape. Wove a platform for the cats to sleep on, then made little woven spots among the branches to keep the sense of peeking out from between leaves. I was trying to make something that the cats would like to use, and that I would like to have inside the house to look at.
It lives in my study, where the cats still use it for naps.
I’ve had a week that kept me too busy to put extra time into studio work. That’s my report for this week. But I’ll take the opportunity to report on some past work. This is the second full sized “cat tree” I’ve built, finally finished to my satisfaction over the summer.
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
The original cat tree was made from roots dug out from under the house we lived in, when we put in a basement. Wrack and Ruin were new kittens, and I wanted to keep them inside. The structure of wood and twine made a good play gym for them. It lived in the kitchen and I finished building it there.
When we moved, the new house didn’t have space for the old cat tree, so it now lives in my studio, next to my drawing table. The cats sometimes perch there to nap while I work. Meanwhile, I collected some mountain laurel branches from various woods that I love, and started tying them together.
So what makes a cat tree? It has to be big enough to climb, and balanced enough so that it doesn’t fall over with cats perched in it. There have to be places to snooze, and places to explore. Places to hang toys, and different ways to climb up and down. Finally, it has to look appealing enough that I’d want to live with it.
This is mid-way finished; the structure is pretty much set up and I’m working on the esthetic details. I love weaving and tying, and get annoyed by ends hanging out. The whole thing ends up being sort of a sampler of knots and wraps.
So now I have two of these things in my studio, which is more than I need. How do you find a home for something like this? Maybe I’ll put it in my Etsy shop just for grins, though I have no idea how much to charge and can’t imagine how to handle shipping….
At least now it’s been seen by a few more people; Thanks for looking!
Also, here are the drawings I posted in the past week.
I started posting my drawings as a way of keeping myself accountable for drawing something every day. Five years on, this is pretty much built into my routine. Even when I struggle with the blank paper, I still look forward to my (usually) evening drawing time and don’t feel the day is complete without it.
I want to expand on this foundation, spending more time in my studio doing other projects.
I’ve always struggled with the feeling that making art is self-indulgent, and there are many more useful and important things I could be doing with my time. That feeling is probably never going to go away, any more than the chorus of critics in my head whenever I make a drawing.
If I’ve learned anything from my drawing practice, it’s that the most important thing is just to do it, whatever it is. So here’s my declaration of commitment to doing other work in my studio and telling you about it about once a week.
Here are my daily drawings from the past week; they should link to the original posts.
Kind of fun to see a visual diary of the past week!
Until next time, happy autumnal equinox (if you’re in the northern hemisphere)
Some of the drawings look pretty OK as pictures on greeting cards. I’ve put a few assortments together and listed them in my Etsy shop, etsy.com/shop/Ayespider.
You can also see the assortments in the “greeting card gallery” that I added to the menu above this post. Of course, if there are any other pictures you’d really like to have as a card you can always contact me and say so.
Printing technology these days is so great, I’m amazed at how affordable it is to get really satisfying, pleasing reproductions. It’s also really fun to play with card-sized versions of the pictures and seeing how they go together, and what themes develop. Somehow I can see it better when it’s on paper than on a computer screen.
I have a few high quality prints of drawings that I liked very much at the time. They’ve become the very first listings on my very own Etsy shop, which is called “Ayespider“. Who could have predicted that?!?
I’m also trying to make it easy to find homes for original drawings, which are currently sitting in tidy, date-sorted stacks in a studio cabinet but would be much happier out where somebody could see them. Plus, the funds will help support my studio expenses and buy my materials.
Original art goes for $50 per drawing. They’re all on 9″x12” archival, heavy weight paper. If a drawing is claimed, it will say so on its post.
Soon I will also have blank greeting cards available for sale. Yikes!
I find it a little odd that I’m considering this work of sitting on my butt facing a computer screen to be “studio work”, but effectively that’s what it is.
In cleaning up the old blog and trying to restore access to the image archive, I found a whole bunch of posts that I apparently left as unpublished drafts.
Anyhow, rather than put these back in their proper date order just yet I’ll leave them as new posts. It was fun for me looking back and remembering some of the places I’ve been with drawings. Maybe you’ll enjoy it too!
Funny, this post really isn’t about studio work at all, but about making the space to show it on the Eyespider/Ayespider site.
Other stuff goes on besides the daily drawing. Lately it’s mostly involved tying sticks together with twine. This is a space to show some of that work. I want to keep the daily drawings separate and continuous, but add someplace parallel, to bring in more of my odd artsy projects.
So here’s a ‘cat basket’ for your viewing pleasure.
I’ve been working on updating and upgrading Eyespider…to show some of the projects I do aside from the daily drawings. I also want a simple way to sell original art, prints and greeting cards.
For starters, I upgraded my WordPress account to remove the ads you may have been seeing. I found that the domain “Eyespider.com” was not available, so I have claimed “Ayespider.com”. I’m feeling good about the change, I hope it’s not too jarring! The old address eyespider.wordpress.com should continue to work.I’m adding a “studio blog” category, for posting updates and pictures of projects. I’d like also to add a gallery of some recent projects. Taking my web presence more seriously has been a rather steep learning curve, so some of this might take a while!Meanwhile, here’s a picture of a ‘cat tree’ I’m almost done making.