Day 14: NotOurHouse Furniture

January 15, 2013

So I carved out some time today for a quick artist’s date. I was going to hit the Dairy Center for the Arts for a little visual soak. Went on lunch hour and when I arrived all the installations were completely down, they were preparing for new artists. I did find out the new artists will be doing a talk about their work on Friday, however, with an opening reception, so made a note of that for next week’s date.

In the meantime, I had to come up with something. So I parked the car and wondered over to a high priced furniture/home design store in the 29th Street Mall –  Arhaus Furniture. More like NotOurHouse Furniture because we are too poor. A lot of the pieces were made of reclaimed materials, or at least made to look like them. Old munitions carts that double as a charming kitchen buffet, stone fishing anchors from Thailand that make for bulky yuppie paperweights.

I really don’t like shopping, so not sure why I chose this place. I guess it was the best I could do at short notice, and maybe if I was able to ignore the price tags it could have been more inspirational. It beat most of the other shops in the vicinity (except maybe American Apparel), but why a store at all?

One reason was it was nose hair freezing cold out today, so I needed something close. Another was that nearly all of Julia’s suggestions involve going to a store of some sort for your date. An old clock store, a rug store, an exotic fabric store etc. Now maybe since she’s sold 3 million copies of the artist’s way this kind of shopping is appealing to her (I’d be interested to see what the suggestions were for the initial printing of artists way – probably a ramen store or the library) but it’s not my cup of earl grey.

I learned that a different attitude is in order for future dates. I am going to try and just take it in through the senses next time, not through the pocketbook. Ignore those price tags and try and find the intrinsic beauty below. And if I do decide to go to a store, make it an authentic one that can stimulate my senses.

After my initial plans were thwarted I entertained the idea of visiting EADS bookstore, the 100 year old treasure on the corner of 28th and Canyon. Alas, it closed last week after 100 years in business. Probably destined to become the next Buffalo Wild Wings or Shitburger.

I wanted to thumb through some long forgotten magazines, touch some old paper, connect to something dusty and tobacco stained. Instead a closed sign hung in the window, and I made my way to a store that sells new things and tries to make them look old, tries to capture the same nostalgia without any of the substance. Like so many others, a place that adds fake rust and produces hollow things that make somebody really rich and nobody really happy.

Categories: Daily Update.

Day 13: A Day of Rest

January 14, 2013

Oh Holy Sabbath. I wrote a song today and it felt good. Started with a piano riff and moved it’s way to guitar for a pretty standard but high flying chorus Still needs some work. I’ll put it up sometime.

Categories: Uncategorized.

Day 12: Chocolate Vegan Pancakes

January 13, 2013

I’m finding the weekends to be more difficult, less routines plus on Saturdays I’m often with Xa.Creativity crept in in the form of a new recipe. I wanted to make some vegan pancakes but realized we were out of almond milk after I had promised them. So I rooted through the pantry and fridge and found some chocolate coconut yogurt. I was able to throw some cakes together that were quite tasty. Here is my first recipe on the blog. It had to happen sometime.

Vegan Pancakes with Chocolate Yoghurt

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup coconut yoghurt (I used chocolate, I’m sure vanilla would be fine, as would an almond milk or soy yoghurt)
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 ripened banana
  • 2 Tbsp. ground flax
  • 1 tsp. Grapeseed Oil (canola or olive is fine too)
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat or white flour
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. Cinnamon
  •  Maple Syrup & Vegan Butter

How to:

1. Grease skillet. Mix together dry ingredients together, then add yoghurt, water and mashed banana to the dry ingredients, stirring until things are blended well but not over stirred.

2) Cook for a few minutes on a hot skillet and slather with some vegan butter, pure maple syrup and other accoutrements like fresh fruit, nuts etc

These would have been great with some pecans or carob chips as well. They turned out a little moist on the inside and pretty tasty!

I am usually a by the book cook if it comes to something that involves baking or complexities of any kind other than stirring in vegetables with pasta. So I was pleased to have invented my first recipe. A lot of the recipe was taken from other contexts, but I think it has enough of my own flair to call it mine.vegan_pancakes_bananas

vegan_chocolate_pancakesI even took a couple pictures, which seem to do it no justice at all. They almost look like sloppy nasty hamburgers in the pan. I showed them to my sister and she mentioned that taking pics of food from above is not that great, that it is better to take a side angles. So I’ll try that for my next creation. A quick search turned up these 5 food photography tips as well.

 

Categories: Uncategorized.

Day 11: Compatible Cataclysm

January 12, 2013

Not much to report today, I reclaimed the morning pages but did not incorporate much creativity into the day. I am feeling anxious about the Broncos game for whatever reason, and a cold front that is sinking in like an iceberg. For some reason this weekend seems off-kilter to me, so wondering if my intuition will bear itself out (manifested in a Broncos loss I guess, or some other compatible cataclysm).

The business continues to flounder, it’s interesting how much momentum is there. One client jumps ship and the rest smell it or something. I mean why now? I guess the ones that did profit from our work are now sensing the downward spiral, and those that didn’t are oblivious to the changes. Or maybe they were waiting until the new year as I was, or any other number of writings on the wall.

Either way, there is a shift in the air, and it is happening rapidly. Becky is freaking out, I am rolling with the punches, but my expectations (and repercussions of failure) are considerably less. “It is what it is”, to quote some famous illiterate athlete douchebag, so make of it what you will. But “the times they are a changin” to quote some brilliant soothsaying songwriter, so you either have to go or resist. Either way it is happening.

With a successful babysitters rehearsal I do feel more creatively entrenched. But this day to day business, it’s probably like the stock market. Ups and downs, Gains and Crashes. I’m in it now and I’m sure some days there will be sure growth and others monumental failure. That’s the deal.

 

 

Categories: Uncategorized.

Day 10: Fiddlesticks

January 11, 2013

I don’t know what to say about the babysitters.

This is my good friends Maureen and Greg’s band and they’ve asked me to play with them at an upcoming show (singing harmonies and doing some percussion). Today was the first rehearsal for me, and I was a bit nervous. It’s always weird going into a new situation like that and trying to make things better. They are looking to mix things up and asked me if I would sit in. It was tough at first – felt like I was in the spotlight and not wanting to step on any toes. I felt timid and awkward.

The anxiety dissipated after a a bit and I surrounded myself with a bass drum and a couple of congas, fiddle sticks, tambo and a bunch of percussion that helped me feel enclosed.

I need to figure out parts for each of the songs I think, what instruments I will play and tighten down the hatches quite a bit. But I should be able to do that by then (Feb 18). Just need to spend some time on it, maybe practice on a drum or borrow theirs for a bit.

I’ve actually always wanted to play drums since I was a kid, so this is a fun opportunity to unleash my inner animal. I wonder if I could find a shitty base drum on craigslist to practice on, I’m sure I could. It was cool for them to ask me to do the show, and will be a great chance to get back on a stage of sorts and do a little rocking.

This is their future hit:

Categories: Uncategorized.

Day 9: A Closet Painter?

January 10, 2013

Well my first slip up this morning, I had conveniently forgotten a car appointment and by the time I had my senses about me I had to rush out the door, a cracker for breakfast and 3 blank pages in my journal. What ensued was a progressively stressful day full of  a car appointment, another lost client, a multi-hour conversation with my business partner trying to disentangle myself from the business, lots of driving, and general technical head banging, hand wringing and unproductivity.

An angry dad painting a closet – from http://www.angryjuliemonday.com

Blah.I don’t feel very good right now and I’m wondering if there is a causation or merely a correlation happening here. Anyway, it is interesting to note. I am going to do a quick task from chapter 2 of Walking in This World to try and soothe my troubled soul.

Identify Your Identity:

Answer the following questions as rapidly as you can (answers in italics)

1) When I was a small child, I dreamed of growing up to be rich (or an fbi agent possibly, can’t really remember so just going off what people have told me I said to them.)

2) In my childhood, my interest in what art was encouraged? Music

3) In my childhood, my interest in what art was discouraged? Visual Arts – Drawing, painting etc

4) If I had had more encouragement, I would have probably tried painting

5) The teacher who helped me see my gifts was Duane Wolfe & AP English Teachers who I can’t remember the name at the moment because I was too stoned.

6) The childhood friends who helped my see my gifts were Shawn & Erin

7) If I had another life, the art form I would start exploring early is painting

8) The reason it is too late for me in this lifetime is the length of time and patience towards mastery seems completely unattainable, plus I’m not very gifted imho so it would be lots of hard work that I’m not ready or patient enough to undertake.

9) One action I can take in the direction of my childhood love is to buy a couple of canvasses and see what happens

10) I now commit to this dream by painting something during the 3 month journey of this course

I don’t know if this is really a love, a childhood love to paint. But it is something worth exploring. I think it might inform me of some things I need. In college my favorite course was actually an intro to painting course – one where I felt like I made real progress and learned how to bring something out from the inside, and leave some inhibitions behind. So, maybe it wasn’t so far off base.

Not sure this will lead me to my childhood dream of being rich, however, but is this really a worthy dream at this point? It seems to have gotten me into a lot of unfulfiling situations thus far. When it is the point, it hasn’t worked.

So maybe I need to reconsider the point, and shift towards doing what I love, and trust that some money will be the byproduct rather than the goal. Not planning on painting bringing home the tempeh just yet, but it might be fun!

Categories: Uncategorized.

Day 8: Elephant

January 9, 2013

The Elephant – coming into our creative beings as a larger self. A more complex being with a trunk and a tail and a big body. Chapter 2 seems to suit me now, this coming out process as a creative which is frought with self doubt and days of feeling strong and days of feeling week and unworthy. I can relate to Julia’s stuggle of finding music at 45 – a new creative calling that rocked her identity as a writer.

I am just coming back home to my creativity. Songwriting seems like the natural fit, something that still has a lot of juice for me but might not be the thing. Maybe it is photography, I’ve really enjoyed taking pictures lately. Or maybe writing, I’ve always heard this faint voice from a long echo chamber saying “you should write”.  I don’t know, but it’s interesting to note the artist’s life is never quite settled. It is not linear, and involves a whole lot of faith. That is the place I still need to step into and embrace.

This week I did morning pages every day, which already seems to be helping tremendously. I did an artists date, which was fun. I did not do the walk, so will try to do that this week. The synchronicities are already happening, and a big opportunity will present itself this week (according to my fortune cookie anyway, which seems as good a compass as any in these turbulent times).

The elephant in the room is my creativity, and how this impacts my current financial, work, time, life situation. I am just waking up to him, he’s been there all along, slumped in the corner, whinnying for some peanuts or a belly scratch.

Elephant, nice to see you.again.

YouTube Preview Image

Categories: Uncategorized.

Day 7: Robot Dildo

January 8, 2013

I had cordoned off some time for an artist’s date today, just me and ms artiste. Big plans to hit the Boulder History Museum and learn about Chief Niwot’s curse and why I can’t get the hell out of this town (supposedly he put a curse on all Boulderites that they can never leave, but I guess I’ll have to learn about it another time. I’ll be here for a while so it shouldn’t be a problem).

I arrived, all decked out in my artist flannel and mussed hair – sans beret – and alas they were closed Mondays. Of course, thwarted on my first attempt. That damn conspiring universe. So I had some time to kill. I briefly considered counting the trip to Liquor Mart as a date, since I did venture into the scotch and gin isles, but ultimately decided that I would have needed to visit the schnapps isle and probably bought my artist some mad dog for it to be official, so I ventured out to somewhere familiar and fun, like an old worn out brown musty couch… Savers!

butterfly mask

“I taste with my feet” – Iphone photo of mask with a little fireworks cs4 embelishment.

I wasn’t sure what I was looking for, and I wanted to get something I normally wouldn’t, so started out in the knick knacks area. Low and behold, a trippy butterfly mask appeared. This seems appropriate with the whole transformation theme these days, plus we had been to the butterfly museum yesterday, so it made sense. Here is an artists rendition of the mask.

Another score was this robot dildo (please someone let me know if you stumble upon this post searching for robot dildo and know what this might really be used for). I am officially rave ready except for my tendency to be in bed by 10:30, my distaste for techno and a complete lack of access to any good drugs.

The real find however, was a little craft table that needs some paint. So I am going to paint it and set it up for Xavier. Me and my artist. I’ve never really done something like that so I’m looking forward to it. It was nice to go in without expectations or plans and leave with some pretty good finds. All and all a successful date, and I think we might try it again next week, is she calls me back.

Categories: Daily Update.

Day 6: A Day Off

January 7, 2013

I realized in this process I probably need a day off, or at least a day where I don’t expect myself to do anything (Except of course morning pages, those will stay everyday for now). So Sundays will be that day. It is the only day where Jacey and I don’t have other regular commitments so family comes first on Sundays. Very old school, but it’s important for us all.

So if something does happen I’ll report it, and if not, no sweat. That being said I did have a tarantula walk across my hand for the first time today, so that’s gotta count for something.

Categories: Daily Update.

Day 5: Beet Juice Playdoh

January 6, 2013

I feel my creativity awakening slightly, I think this is mostly from the morning pages and just shifting my focus and filter towards being more creative. A couple of ideas have come up from my adventures playing with Xavier. There is always room for more childrens books, songs, activities, foods etc. (a case in point are those fruit/vegetable pouches that sold 53 million dollars worth last year compared to $4800 when they first came out in 2008).

1) Organic Playdoh. Made with all organic ingredients. We made some homemade playdoh and it is very soft and works better than the toxic stuff from the store. What if it was made with all organic ingredients and the food coloring was beet juice, kale juice etc. If people are willing to buy everything else organic, why not this? Maybe it could even be edible. (of course a quick internet search shows it’s already been done – back to the drawing board)

Organic Playdoh Alligators

Organic Playdoh Alligators by Xa & Dad – photo artistically enhanced by the ArtistaOil app

2) Ipad Book Matcher: An App that matches up with a book to give more info, or have some little animations, or time markers so you could match up a book with a movie. So you are reading a book with your kid and there are little things on the pages that you look up on the app. Of course you could just have all of this in the app but it’s fun to incorporate several mediums at the same time.

Got this idea because we were watching bits and pieces of finding nemo and trying to find things from the finding nemo book in the movie. It would have been much easier if there were time markers next to some of the images so we could find them – and skip the scary barricuda!

Now these are nothing like brain flashes I used to have (caffeinated soap anyone) but do reflect where I’m at at the moment. Raising a 2 year old allows you to see a whole different world, with lots of potential product tie ins I guess……?

 

 

Categories: Daily Update.

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