The Sixth Annual Contest of Whatever!

A Tale of Two City Animals…

A squirrel walks into a bar – well it was actually a discarded scaffolding bar some idiot had left propped up awkwardly against a wall, unsecured and off balance. The clumsy squirrel thinks – whatever, I still walked into it! The loosened scaffolding bar clatters unceremoniously to the ground with a resounding clang, hitting a passing scavenging fox on the head on the way down. The freaked-out squirrel takes full advantage of the fox’s obvious disorientation and distress and scarpers up the nearest tree to escape retribution. The poor old fox slinks home in pain muttering to himself and curls up in his den with a bad headache and two eyes even blacker than usual… 🙂

The end.

Created for my first ever entry to Evil Squirrel’s Sixth Annual Contest of Whatever 🙂

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Stream of Consciousness Saturday: Ad/Add/AD

My brain’s feeling a bit addled today so I’m sticking to something simple for my Stream of Consciousness post.

It was really fun to add a couple of new doodles to my mini art journal this morning…

I’m finding it’s actually really good to have my little doodles all kept in one place, my journal feels colourful and comfortably creative without any pressure of perfection in my performance.

I know I’m clearly an adult in 2019 AD but I still like to doodle like I did as a kid, then colour it in with coloured pencils, and I feel playfully adventurous in a very small but surprisingly satisfactory way… 🙂

Brighter Tomorrows

I’ve not been feeling in the brightest of moods over the last couple of days, and life has altogether felt quite onerous, but I woke up feeling much lighter this morning and the sun is shining and somehow everything just looks and feels different, as if my whole world has suddenly lit up again.

In spite of having been a bit of a cranky misery guts lately I’ve still managed to add a few little doodles to my mini art journal, playing about with different ideas to see what works and what doesn’t really do it for me – and yes, the therapuetic value of being creative definitely kicked in, helping me a bit feel less… antagonistic towards the world, I guess, for a little while at least…

The ‘listen attentively, reassure gently, love generously’ phrase came from Sunday night’s episode of ‘Call the Midwife’ as Dr Turner was advising Sister Julienne on how best to care for Sister Monica Joan, who clearly shows signs of dementia. I think it particularly touched me because my dad is in the early stages of vascular dementia and I think it’s really helpful advice, so I wanted to be able to remember it in the future ❤

The flowers and curvy swirls felt good to do, the sharp-angled geometric boxes less so – I think I perhaps felt like I needed to soften my sharp mood, not highlight and accentuate it…

My mini colouring in pages may not be overly complicated or delicate or intricately designed, but I’m happy enough with them and doing them certainly made me smile again for a little while, even while life felt bleak for a day or two, so that has to be worth something?

Oh, and after almost two weeks the deep cut on my pinkie finger is healing well – a huge relief and a very grateful reason to smile 🙂

Weekly Smile : 14 Jan 2019

Fandango’s One Word Challenge: Onerous

Keep Calm and Doodle On

Yesterday I made a silly schoolboy error while doodling in my art journal, and immediately I rebuked myself, irritated and upset at my clumsy foolishness, and initially I just wanted to tear out the offending page and start again. But I rebuked myself for my rebuke, and reminded myself that perhaps my pathetic pursuit of perfection is getting in the way of my desire for creativity. I do want to be creative, but want to be good at it, always and immediately, straight out the box.

I mean, ok, so I made a mistake. Big deal. Suck it up, buttercup. Seriously, get over yourself and get on with it girl, because its only a silly little smear of ball-point pen ink rubbed across part of the page accidentally. And it’s not like the paperwork is anything of consequence, anyway – it’s just my personal, private art journal, no reason to create such a fuss. No wonder I struggle to achieve creative aims if I give up at the first flaw, seeing it as I do as a sign of abject failure.

So feeling duly reprimanded by myself for my apparent arrogance and conceit at being so non-accepting of the realities of my human nature, of acknowledging the distinct possibility of infinite errors and obstacles occurring within my journey towards my goal, I looked at it in a less dramatic light. I mean, in the grander scheme of things it hardly matters that there is a flaw in my doodle, and yet still it triggers that old ‘not good enough’ message in my head…

Hmmm… I think that before I can learn to succeed in life, I first need to learn to fail with dignity. So after my initial moment of madness I calmed myself down and carried on with my doodle anyway – and here it is in all its ink-smeared imperfection, for all the world to see. Ta-da! 🙂

Fandango’s One Word Challenge: Rebuke

My Mini Art Journal

Having formed the decision yesterday to create myself an art journal, I took my first steps straight away and have started off as planned with the simple art-form I feel most comfortable with at the moment – doodling and colouring in. I don’t want to make it into a formal sketch book, but to me doodling isn’t so much drawing as designing informally, and that playful feeling of creativity is what I’m aiming for 🙂

So I picked up my empty five and a half by three and a half inch (14 x 9cm) plain Moleskine notebook and doodled an initial design on the flyleaf to set the scene…

And for my first ‘real’ page I chose a doodle to represent a little aide memoire to remind me what works in an art journal…

And for good measure, I added another doodle to remind me of what I’m actually doing in my own art journal…

I’m feeling really happy with what I’ve done so far – it was great fun to do! And while I was designing my doodles I’ve decided my mini art journal will be a small defined space for me to visualise whatever is in my head at any given time and commit it to paper. Some may have words, some may not, but hopefully all will create an image-based indication of my thoughts and feelings in the moment.

I’m not necessarily going to stick to this basic mini-format long-term, or even share every page I doodle (otherwise it becomes something I do publically for you as an audience rather than journalled for me privately), but having made a start is enough for me for now – I’ll simply let it grow organically from now on as the mood takes me… 🙂