Once we get going on the arts & crafts, we are pure savage, flat out, no flies on us. No holds barred, I tell ya.
And we're there, just given'er for all she's wort'.
That's what happened on Monday, at Art Night #4:
I showed up a few minutes early but there were still people there before me - it's nice to know I'm not the only one excited about all of this.
So I busted out my tree, and waited for further instructions. Jeannette always tells me fancy art stuff and fancy art words, and I am sure she thinks I understand them. Sometimes I wish she would just turn away for half a second so I could whip out the online dictionary and look up what we are discussing. For example: 'tonal' and 'up and down brush strokes'. Seriously. Painting is hard, man.
So first, Jeannette told me that I needed to see the tree picture all the time. First I thought she meant my actual artwork, and I thought she was insulting me by saying in a nice way that my tree painting was so bad that I was obviously blind.
But she meant the original picture.
You might notice the tree picture taped to my canvas, below. Well, it's taped there because Jeannette does what she wants, and she just ripped the page right out of her picture book so she could tape it to my canvas. She said it was her book so she could rip it up if she wanted to.
Alright - I wasn't, in fact no one was trying to stop her, so maybe she was trying to convince herself. I don't know. But tear up the book she did. She was pure savage on Monday, too.
Then she started to show me various brush strokes to use. However, her painting looks awesome, of course, and my painting looks like a monkey just learned how to throw mud onto the wall in lines, after watering it down by adding blood, poo and spit to make various shades of brown.
Now, that's not necessarily a bad thing because if you look at my tree, I am mostly inside the lines AND it is in the shape of a tree, relatively. And a few weeks ago, I never painted a tree before in my life.
In fact, Jeannette told me that I had some Picasso thing going on. I don't know if that was an insult or not (do art people like Picasso? was he an art world outcast?), but he was pretty famous and his art is still hanging around (pun intended) so I think I'll just pretend I'm that awesome.
So, yeah, I'm pretty much Picasso. You may as well admit it, too, even of it's only to yourself. Look at that painting. I make art.
Actually, if you are 20 feet away, it's not too shabby. And in a picture, like above, it's pretty good, too. So maybe I'll keep it on a cathedral ceiling or something. So what if I have to find one first... I'm ambitious!
Maybe that's why the old art masters only painted on ceilings - they knew art secrets - keep everyone plenty of room away and your art looks amazingly fantastic.
Whatever. I love my tree. I love the antlers. I love the dancing men. I love the colours. I love the brush strokes. I love the tonal stuff (I assume that means different colours). I will also love that we are doing shading next week, after I finish the rest of this weeks work.
I love it because I am making it. It's mine. And if someone says it's ugly, I will hit them over the head with it. Just teasing - I don't want to wreck it!
Steph the giggling lunatic showed up and she busted out her letters, and she said she was tired and exhausted and all that jazz. Funny, because once she started on her letter T, she was hardcore.
It took her 3 weeks to get the first letter, B, under control, and she got her letter T to the same point in one night, night #4.
While barely noticeable in this picture, both the B and the T are both inked in black and foiled in silver and gold.
Her current level of speed makes no sense. She is starting her 3rd letter, U, now. She is all business.
She said now that she knows what she is doing, she can speed up. She then added that as soon as colour is ready to be added, everything will come to a screaming halt as she will have to decide what to do.
Then, we will have round-table discussions, I guess.
Time to bust out the old thinking caps, maybe have some voting cards and definitely some long talks about this. We need some of those paint strip colour cards so the discussions can really be informed. I have to go to a paint store so I can be ready for this. I cannot be unprepared.
When we do our little discussions about colour, Steph stares at the letters for a long time as if she is waiting for them to pop up and talk to her (I am assuming she is picturing them in bright Technicolour), and then she will turn to look at me in exactly the same way: kind of with her head tilted and a little bit of a vacant stare. That's because she is thinking (I hope) hard about her choices.
Otherwise, I don't know what that look is about. Maybe she looks like that all the time and I just didn't notice. Oh well, whatever. Then she turns back to her work, still with the same look: vacant, creepy eyes. It reminds me of monster movies, except creepier because it's not supposed to be scary.
Maybe she is waiting for me to say/do something else, but I am not really sure what else to do about the colour stuff. So I stand there, with my hands at my sides, holding a little paintbrush, until it's awkward. But I think it's only awkward for me. She doesn't seem to notice.
With my heart beating faster, I came up with a new idea in case the monster look came back: I think we have to do some colouring experiments.
Maybe we need to put aside the good copies of the letters once the foiling is done, and start practicing colouring the flowers with various shades of colours she likes, on extra photocopies of the letters. Then we will know what works for her and then we can apply it to the real thing.
Otherwise, I am afraid she will have to start over (eek!).
In that case, I suppose Jeannette could just rip some pages of letters out of one of her books to frame if it gets really out of control. She can also go no-holds-barred when she wants to. Not only does she do what she wants, she also makes us do what she wants.
In fact, she has already said the magic words to me, "I don't want to read about that in your blog!"
So, if you want to hear the really good stories, you have to be invited to Art Night, like my one-hundred-and-eleventeenth cousin, Ashleigh. She showed up with her art work and painted a bit, chatted a bit and generally had fun. She heard the stories.
I can only give you some stuff. Jeannette said so.