Day 310 – Situational Awareness

Art Apple - Day Three Hundred TenI am determined to be cheerful and happy in whatever situation I may find myself. For I have learned that the greater part of our misery or unhappiness is determined not by our circumstance but by our disposition. – Martha Washington

We all have a certain amount of situational awareness or (SA). I can predict some things with certainty. The cat will sit on top of the the dryer every night starting at about 8pm waiting for his evening meal, Doug will not put the salt & pepper shaker back in the cabinet but place them on the counter below, and if my Dad is in a waiting area in an airport with time before a flight – he WILL call me. I find it to be a crazy concept that we can predict much of anything in life but the concept of SA is “knowing what is going on around you so that you can decide what to do” is a given – having a concept for this makes me laugh. You can predict certain behaviors but you cannot possibly know everything that is going on – that is counter intuitive if you ask me. All we can do is decide what to do based on what we do know and are paying attention to. For all you scientists or philosophers or anyone who has an opinion on this please – tell me where I’m going wrong. And, Doug – explain it to us in terms of baseball… (check comments – he’s dying to explain to all of us SA in terms of baseball.)

Things that we feel are predictable help make life less chaotic. But, times come when we need to mix it up a bit. Change sides of the bed you sleep on, try a new hairstyle, or… purchase art supplies that you’ve always wanted to try but didn’t want to risk not liking. What I did today was unpredictable even to myself – I’m going to try it more often!

I went downtown this morning to meet my friend Nate and his new friend Justin for brunch and afterwards I was right around the corner from the art super store. I could have bought the same old, same old but I saw that they had some new watercolors. A brand that I’ve considered purchasing before but hadn’t because I would have had to order them online and I am very set in my watercolor ways. But, I bit the bullet and purchased 4 of the super expensive (Doug is now thinking – how super expensive) paints – just to see. I got home and started on my daily apple, excited to experiment with my new paints. And… well, I have mixed feelings. There was no way I could predict this – I just had to give it a go and although they didn’t “act” the way I expected I’m very glad I got them and I know that I will find a way to incorporate them in a way that works and is blessedly predictable. If that doesn’t end up happening at least I tried and know and can now make a situational decision.

I plan on looking for ways to break out of my usual and normal situation – I might not be able to predict the outcome but like Martha, I can feel confident that I’ll meet it with happiness no matter what because that circumstance I can determine!

Until tomorrow.


Day 310 was created in a mixture of Danial Smith watercolors and my “usual” pallet as well as prismacolor pencils, graphite, and a gold sharpie! FUN

In The Studio

1. Countdown – 55 days to The Big Apple Paint-A-Thon to raise money for AS Education!

2. In The Studio – So many colors too few days!

3. Apple Recipe of the Day – Pork belly with apple and celery salad.





Day 303 – An Experiment

Art Apple - Day Three Hundred ThreeEvery great inspiration is but an experiment. – Charles Ives

Lately on Saturdays I’ve been creating a “Saturday Apple” – an apple that is pretty but simply painted and that doesn’t include any post. It was a bit of a compromise with Doug because I was spending a lot of time on the weekends on my blog. And, it was a way to get a little break for myself too. Today I sat down around noon and instead of just pulling out the paint I was dying to try a technique I’ve been researching. It is a method to transfer printed images onto a surface. It allows the artist to incorporate images into the piece without using a college technique that can lead to deterioration (ha in about 100 years or so) but…

I have really wanted to try it – but when you experiment you have to be prepared for failure even when it is accompanied with inspiration. I knew it was going to take a lot more time than a Saturday Apple but it was really hot out today and after planting a couple of new $2 Lowe’s special salvias, I was ready to cool off.

I had a lot of fun making today’s apple. I used fabric, gesso, thread, paint, scrap paper, and the image of the apple you see is my Zentangle Apple from Day 151. Is that cheating??? I used my own apple to make another apple. Anyway – I used this transfer technique and then stitched and painted and beaded – oh my!

I’m lovin’ making art. And honestly I cannot wait to create without constraint!

Until tomorrow.


Day 303 was created in a bunch of stuff! See above 🙂

In The Studio

1. Countdown – 62 days to Apple-A-Thon!

2. In The Studio – Process pic of the day

3. Apple Recipe of the Day – Apple, Rhubarb, and Cardamom Ice Cream

4. Interesting Article Of The Day – Have you tried Dry Needling For Your AS? I have and it really works for me!



Day Six – Lines & Checks

I’m posting a bit early for today – on my way to Maine this afternoon.

I’m running around furiously pulling together all the necessary art supplies I’ll need.  I’m glad I’m going for a nice long visit because I have to check a bag anyway and vials of ink, tubes of paint and sharp scissors aren’t carry on friendly.  I’ll have some really great sketch time on the plane and hopefully soon I’ll get myself a wireless tablet for quick digital and tree friendly sketching!

Until tomorrow.


Day Five – Still a life

My friend Sandy made a great suggestion on Sunday for an Art Apple.   She had just finished her 10th Race For The Cure in Denver – her first as someone living and surviving with breast cancer.  Although my blog is to highlight Ankylosing Spondylitis awareness, it is also to thank people who support anyone living and dealing with health issues.  So her suggestion was perfect (thank you Sandy!)

A Pink Breast Cancer Awareness Apple!

I sat down this evening very excited to create her apple.  I had a clear idea of a hot pink apple with a chartreuse background painted in acrylics but, sometimes the creative process just happens and you don’t fight it.  So…. this isn’t Sandy’s apple – it will have to wait until another day (and I have a new vision for it now too – lol.)  Today’s apple sorta looks like a peach to me but – eh…. I’ll be my biggest critic I suppose.

Until tomorrow.


Day Four – Mosaic

Wow – I was delusional as to how long this would take.  Four hundred pieces of quarter inch cut outs from magazines – what was I thinking?  Doug got home around 10pm and sweet wonderful man that he is started searching for colors for me.  The edges were the most difficult.  But, I love the results.  Hope you all like it too!

Who knows what tomorrow will bring….


Day Two – Watercolor

Yea!  It’s day two and I got the watercolors out and dusted off.

I love my watercolors and the pallet I use when I paint with them.  I had a wonderful teacher in college who I learned so much from and she showed me how to set up a watercolor pallet.  You squeeze out the paints into the little wells and just leave theme there.  I thought it was so strange at the time – “won’t they dry up” I thought.  Duh.  The water revives them just like the crayola ones we get in kindergarten.  Paint has always seemed so precious to me (I’m trying to get over it) so I had a difficult time with the concept but it works and I love watching the color come to life when I add water after a long time away.

My plan this morning was to do a sort of old school watercolor apple, which is always the first thing you paint in watercolor 101.  And the plan was to get it done early and do some sketches and ideas for the coming week.  Well… my Saturday got away from me.  I’ve got the house to myself this weekend (miss you sweetie) and I puttered away.  And in terms of the old school look – that didn’t work out so well – not much old school left in me I guess.  Maybe one of these days!  But – what came out was fun, colorful and I loved every second of painting it.  Hope you like it too!