Tag Archives: creativity

Kauai.

16 Apr

Having a difficult week here… Everything out of sorts…

Baldguy is in Kauai for Winner’s Circle (Gartner’s sales award)…It’s an all expenses paid vacation… He took our old friend Kim (Kim is a dude, by the way…Of course now I realize why so many people were confused about how I was ok with baldguy taking another chickie with him. But yeah, Kim is a guy. A really awesome guy who we have known from way back in Baldguy’s days moonlighting in a video store up north.)

Everyone keeps asking why I didn’t go. The truth is, I really wanted to go. My hip isn’t as bad as it was when he received confirmation that he had qualified for the trip- and the hip was a worry as I wanted to explore Kauai as actively as I possible could. I’d still need some modifications to handle my physical issues, but we would have had some serious fun. After all, the last time we took a vacation was the year after we were married. We drove from Boston to Burlington, VT. We were gone for 2 days. We stayed in a hotel we found on priceline… I think it was $50/night. We felt so decadent.

Imagine how we would feel in Kauai, at a very expensive resort with every expense paid… Wow.

But someone needed to stay with kiddo. We don’t have anyone that will watch him and keep him safe, not here. And we are making little bits of progress here and there… Leaving him (yes, for the first time in almost 5 years…not because I don’t recognize the need for time apart, but because the logistics are insurmountable) would have set us back so far in regards to progress, and taking him wasn’t an option (no comment). I let baldguy work on the logistics of possibly going as a family (baldguy’s idea) and was told that it couldn’t happen. I think it could have happened with some planning, but I have been focusing on the day to day with the kiddo, so I delegated and these were the results..

Hopefully, baldguy comes back refreshed and rested and ready to help tackle this beast that is our family life. Because I’m having a hard time holding onto the little bit of me that I finally found again after so long (my need to create) and managing the day to day things and staying on the various regimens that everyone tells us boy needs and that I see are helping him make progress. I can hope, right?

Huge hugs… Tough morning…Tough day yesterday with kiddo.

b

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Scottie…

15 Apr

Scottie…

Originally uploaded by CleverGirlBek

Finally finished this piece….

This spirited little guy took awhile- I made the setting (which was a bit more challenging than simple round settings, I admit) and then let him run about my computer for a bit (he has been resting against the screen)… Finally, eureka!

Vintage bakelite/catalin in a sterling silver setting (bezel and solid backing)….

Two types of chain (one for the collar, one for the leash/chain for your neck)….

Every few pieces I wind up with one that I don’t finish and share right away…. Usually, to someone else’s eye, the piece appears done and usually just needs some sort of length of chain to finish it….But not for me. When pieces are truly complete I get this amazing feeling inside- this sparkle… I feel like I’m sitting on one of those carnival attractions- where the person (or teacher-sometimes they are rented to schools) is sitting above a vat of water and the participants throw baseballs at a target-when they hit it just right the person plunges into the water….But in my version the water is a slightly cool temperature, and it’s seltzer water.

That’s how I feel when I piece is reaching completion and then ready to really share with the world.

There’s a little nervous anticipation, a little bit of a panic, and I feel so joyful- like I’m surrounded by millions of tiny little bubbles and laughter.

Ok. Now I sound a little more nuts than usual.

But that really is the only way I can describe it….

Hugs all around,

B

Labelmaker

12 Mar

Off the deep end….

Originally uploaded by CleverGirlBek

Ok. So I was talking to someone yesterday and I was explaining the steps I have been taking, or attempting to take, in reorganizing the household so there are less distractions to send boy and me into our personal ADD spirals…. So my side of the conversation went something like this:

“I bought small plastic containers”

“They stack”

“I bought a bunch of them. Everytime I go to the store they have more in the same color. I’m not even a big green person- more into blue, which they had…Anyway. I bought a bunch”

“And I bought a label maker”

“This project has been going on for a month. I have a tower of plastic containers with green latches in my living room. I’m going to put everything in plastic containers and label it so it’s out of sight but I can still find stuff” (note: true to a life of ADD and being the creative sort I tend to leave things out because for me, out of sight=out of mind and leaving things out typically means I do eventually finish them but it also means that we have tons of visual clutter which would be distracting for a person without ADD/ADHD….Hence the reorganization)

At this point I confess the following.

“The label maker is put away. I made a label for it that says ‘LABEL MAKER’.”

And it is at that point that we both start laughing, hard.

The truth is that I have been having a hard time with my ADD and fatigue and a whole host of health issues…

And of course, boyo comes first- always. So now I’m staring at a pile of information about how to help him, how to help me help him, how to help the teacher help him, how to explain all of this stuff to his grandparents, and a sizable pile of how to help me. Because if I can’t focus at all, I can’t very well help him.

So today I went in and dug around and found some more suggestions on being a productive adult with ADD.

Those of you that know me, know that I work my arse off and I always have and I always will, it’s my nature. I do, in fact, get things done.
But what I cannot do is focus. Have a conversation with me in person and you will find that my brain likes to take detours. Trying to complete a task as simple as getting a cup of coffee in the morning can often turn into a 2 hour event, if it happens at all. Most folks have blinders that they don’t even think about- that ability to get out of bed and get the cup of coffee. They can tune out the things that derail me in my attempt at having just a regular morning. Everything has a million steps and points at which I can be pulled off of my track. I do many things exactly when they occur to me and it takes every bit of strength not to be derailed from one tiny task, and then I’m wiped out if it gets done at all…I’ve had other artists ask to come hang out- to have fun and to learn from each other,  I’d love that, but I can’t function with more distraction, and I’m a little shy about my visual clutter and my mad scientist work style…  I did function, for years, in office situations.  Surprisingly, many of my jobs in the past have involved organizing other folks.  But that was before the many things that make my ADD more symptomatic… I do manage to get my orders out on time, but instead of completing them in one simple swoop I have been finding that having more of a schedule/to do list of every part is necessary and while it only takes me a few minutes to get an order out (ready to wear pieces) those few minutes are quite broken and scattered across the day…

But as long as the label maker box has a label that says label maker on it and the label maker is in the box, then everything will be A-O.K., don’t you think….

(hubby just came back in the room and said “what’s up kid?” and that’s all it takes for me to be knocked off the track….eeeeek. I’ll post this anyway, even though I’m pretty sure it didn’t go where I intended it to….)

*hugs*
b

This and that and Industrial Sunshine.

25 Jan

CitronOriginally uploaded by CleverGirlBek Eeep. None of my format is keeping…. So this looks like it came straight from my brain! (I’m the queen of the run-on… I had a prof in college tell me I was “comma-tose”….) Sorry :-)  My love of juxtaposing opposites is endless….Even when the differences are more subtle or cerebral…I love mixing natural and manmade materials (silver and plastics)…. Different textures…. Different colors and shades…. Old and new…. Most of my pieces have a marriage of opposites – it’s part of who I am and has always been a part of my art… I would say that less than a handfull of my pieces that have this dynamic were intentional at the get-go… Often the details that comprise the contrasts, are only revealed to me at the very end or close to the end. On occasion, I’ll have a piece that is technically finished but I’m not getting that giddy, goofy jumble of excitement fluttering around my belly. That lack of feeling is a sure sign that a piece is not done. Around a quarter of my more intensive pieces (those that demand bezel settings and handmade chain) are put in a tin to await additional inspiration….There’s no rush. These are typically not custom or made to order pieces.These are typically new designs and they just need a little push from me… I like to explore and I love the way this scenario works my brain. I also like to follow my pieces wherever they want to take me during “the build”… Often I’ll have a satin, semi-satin, brushed, or completely matte finish in mind when working on a piece but when I get to that point my gut pushes me on- I want to make sure I’ve made the best creative choice for a piece- so most piece in the finishes I’ve mentioned above have actually been brought to that finish and then painstakingly finished to a mirror shine- which for me acts as a blank canvas for whatever final finish I come to… I apply the tiny scratches and rub with sandpaper a little bit at a time- like a painter laying paint and pushing it around a canvas… The picture here is of my Citron earrings- which I also make in other colors…. This is one of those pieces of contrast- matte and shiny, light and dark, sunny and cloudy… A little industrial sunshine for all of you….This style is near and dear to my heart because it required a whole bunch of problem solving…The problem? How to make sterling silver chain where one link was glass and not have the glass shatter or become weak from thermal shock on the way up (torch soldering) or the way down (just cooling) without a kiln…. Hmmmm….Sure I could have just left the rings open- even a paper thin gap in the ring closures would have held the glass ring secure, but that would have been too easy… I’m in this to learn, to explore, so I pressed on…Tried a few different ideas (top secret, of course) and finally a durable answer (durable in regular wear…the yellow rings are glass after all…a sharp smack onto a marble floor is not considered regular wear…although I did drop my pair on tile and they were fine)…And I think the look is pretty fantastic… Links of hammered sterling silver (in a heavier gauge than usual- your lobes won’t notice the extra weight- it’s more visual than anything…Wires are still standard gauge) with a link of fabulous glass (yellow! green! cobalt! a milky carnelian that is just fabulous! gray! black!)…. Ok. Enough of my babble for today… Going to run to the store for some mini-ravioli’s for boy’s dinner…. (I put a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil in a pan, heat it a little bit, and then gently slide in some frozen mini raviolis (mini- seriously less than 1cm square) -carefully so there is no splatter…. then cook until they start to brown/toast….let cool slightly…. mmmm. yummy. it’s pretty much the one food boy requests aside from chocolate milk…) Oh and there are a few new pieces in the shop  Happy Friday!B 

The mind of a child….

11 Nov

Card for my dad

Originally uploaded by CleverGirlBek

When I was 5 or 6… My mom told me to make him a card and I should draw something that he likes….

and this is what I gave my dad (who was a little mortified)…

(my parents were very casual about nudity in our house and until I gave my dad this card there was a stack of playboy and penthouse in their bathroom…)

The part that really gets me is that it didn’t occur to me that this was an inappropriate picture for a kid my age to draw, especially for their dad, but that it did cross my mind to put a headband to visually explain how the bunny ears were held on…

Ok- so this one is a little goofy. Wait until you see my very surreal “holiday” card from the same year (I covered a couple of holiday traditions with a surprise ending)… Oh yes, it is coming soon to a blog near you…

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