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  • a happy, ordinary, middle-aged, suburban woman who paints odd pictures, gardens in a straw hat, lives with the love of her life, is owned by one cat and the ghosts of several others, and walks a little funny 'cause she has a fake leg. She started this website because there's more to life than what we lose, and we need to let each other know what's possible, even if it's only a happy, ordinary life.

November 2011

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  • E-mail me at:

    sara at saraarts dot com

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  • I Took The Handmade Pledge!

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Sara, I actually like that painting-- and if you think of it not as a failure, but as a crystallization of lessons learned the hard way, maybe the perspective changes, as you so beautifully wrote?


Oh, don't worry, BLC. I don't think of it as a complete waste of paper and pigment. It just didn't fulfill my every need for that excursion.

Aesthetically, as with so many other things, it displeases me because of context more than anything else. As detail in a much larger painting (this one is 4" h x 6" w), or as a tole painting on some decorative object, it mightn't fail at all. As its own thing? It's both too little and too much. And also, the colors are inaccurate, as are the textures. Heavy, thick and obvious, they have nothing to do with my model. But then, it is very difficult to render light through rose gold in wax on paper.

The thing I was painting from was a curtain of rosy-golden leaves. I should have painted the curtain, and I would have if I'd given myself more time and paper, and may still try if I have time to go back there before they all fall off. Instead I chose one branch of interesting leaves, which also happened to be frostbitten and half-eaten so that seen by themselves they aren't quite as compelling, especially when rendered in fading light with half-frozen fingers by someone who needs new glasses. As part of the curtain, though, they were just so many more elements of intricacy and bedazzlement.

And I'm sure you can see how that connects to my points about failure. :) There is no crystallization, you know, just the rare illusion of it among choices and steps, choices and steps in an overall aggregation, the "true" shape or significance of which may not be immediately obvious.


"all rights reserved, even though it sucks" might be the funniest thing I've seen all day.


It's trash, but it's my trash. You want it? Go make your own! ;)


Yes, there will be questions. In the spring when Liz's next project is ready. Yay! See, now that I've mea culpa-ed my guilt, all is well, though I believe your process of not minding failure is better.


See? I knew it. :)

It's not that I never mind failure, you understand. I am certainly capable of gnashing my teeth in frustration and embarrassment in the instant when things don't go my way just like everyone else. (Ask my true love, for example, how many times I shrieked "I hate gravity! I'm f*cking sick of gravity!" just today.) It's that I rarely see failure as permanent or even important. It's just process, you know? And I accept it as such.


You may have noticed that my blog is functionally dead. I completely understand getting caught up in things and having plans go differently than expected.
It's wonderful to read about your escapades, tricycle, travel, etcetera. Thank you for sharing.


Functionally dead? I just thought it was sleeping. :)

And I have diligently been trying to find something just right to paint for you. I don't know if you read in an earlier post, but the freakin' Tibetan lily never bloomed. The leaves came up, and then they died back by August. Then we had the second-driest August on record for this area, and my whole garden shriveled and died because I slacked, so my secondary source of subject matter also didn't happen.

Yesterday I was going to try to paint the sweet peas that were my last garden flowers still going great guns on my balcony despite horrible neglect, but then I put it off until this morning, only we had a frost that kind of wrecked them last night.

I may have to resort to painting from one of the bazillion photos I snapped this summer of things actually in bloom while they were blooming. So, yeah, it's not going to be quite what I planned or promised, but dammit it will still be nice! :)

Thanks for your patience and understanding. I hope whatever you're doing instead of blogging your knitting life is lots and lots of fun.


I so feel your pain re: getting momentum up on a trike. I get to the end of my parents' driveway and try to get started...sometimes I have to scoot off the seat and waddle to get going.

If, optimally, the sidewalks are clear, I use those. My limitations are mainly in my neck, and I can't turn my head to see around me. As with my failed "handicapped" driving lessons, I can't make any sense of the mirrors and thus have no idea who's coming up behind me and too much to lose if I get socked by something.

Normally, it's a non-issue. If there's a walker or something, I cross onto the street and wait for her to pass, then get back on the sidewalk.

Unfortunately, the nether end of my street is densely populated by inconsiderate rednecks, who park their mud-crusted pickups across the sidewalk to leave the driveway free for meat-smokin' or some other git-'er-done pursuit. This means I either have to ride on the streets for longer than is safe, or cross back and forth every time I come upon one of these roadblocks.

Some neighborhoods have nice, tapered pieces of concrete between the end of the driveways and the gutters. Not ours. To get from the sidewalk to the street, I have to go down about 4' of sloped driveway-end and over a tall curb into the street, and then back again. It throws my balance all funny and there's always a sickening moment where it feels like my equilibrium is lost altogether.

I've been known to mutter "Oh, I hate you" under my breath when I see one of those damn pickup trucks. I feel like hissing at them.

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