when i was a girl

when i was a girl
i started writing books
books about girls on adventures
girls escaping from their evil mothers
(my father–a violent alcoholic
never appeared
in my stories…
i simply erased him.)
when i was a girl
i started taking long walks
walks through fields
& woods
just thinking
& feeling
the world around me
trying to make sense of it
when i was a girl
i would sit & stare
stare at the horizon
imagine breaching
the walls of the valley
surrounding me
escaping
the warm sun on my face
the massive clouds
eluding me
& i would wish i were
braver….

this is the second version of this i did. i don’t usually re-do these; they are quick sketches done in ink with no revisions. that’s me. that’s my technique.

however!
yuck. i did a representative picture of myself as a girl. bleah. it just was awful. i’m not even going to show it to you. in fact i burned it in my kitchen sink, saying a spell for my art to listen to the whispers in my head rather than depending on what my eyes see….

recently someone was nice enough to compare some of my journal pages to the pages of william blake. so i checked out some books from the library so i could see what he manifested. when my first drawing failed, i cracked open one of the books and looked at a few of his drawings. this second one was inspired by what i saw there–and the feelings of my heart rather than the what may or may not have been more true.

this is not what i looked like as a girl. i actually had bangs.
but, you know what? fuck bangs.
so this is what i looked like in my heart.
as i rise up over the mackinaw river valley
escaping into the clouds.

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healing

i don’t believe in physical ailments
i always suspect
nausea
headaches
pulled muscles
the flu
warts, even
of being disgruntled messages
from my self-conscious

i once had a horrible, terrible, no-good, very bad boyfriend whom i had trouble leaving. i got sick with a cold that lasted over a month.
i once was in a relationship that was not a relationship although i had not been told by the one i thought was my boyfriend, and i started sleepwalking.
with dusty, dear dear dusty, i got plantar warts that live far longer than a plantar wart should live and are actually colonizing my right foot. i have tried every remedy, and every remedy has failed. i will know i have learned my lesson, when those warts go away.

i pulled a muscle in my back almost two weeks ago. i was way too vigorously digging yams. so many yams! like almost a hundred pounds? no joke. if nothing else, we will have enough yams to last us all winter.
however!
i yernked a muscle.
and being me, i ignored it and went on with my life. building a small hoop house, pushing a dead tractor, wrestling goats, lifting small children, balancing my whole world in one hand while doing everything else with the other hand.
several days later, i was in excruciating pain.
my back was all, “i am outta here.”

so who do i call for help? three guesses…fuck. i call dusty. and as soon as he gets here i know what a mistake i have made.
so now i am irritated. frustrated. bitter.

and my back still hurts like fuck.

what is the lesson here?
(please, seriously, besides actually doing yoga and taking better care of myself…what? does that include my self-self? not just my physical self? i’m supposed to take care of my whole for real-real self? that’s it, isn’t it? well, crap….)

i look for messages everywhere…because they are there.

inktober 10th & 11th…ish

there’s a story behind this. but i don’t know what it is.

that was the 11th. for the 10th i phoned it in once more with a half done inking.

inktober10

and it is still not finished.
my life is overwhelming.
i am very angry about being alone. about doing this alone. so angry. and depressed. and feeling like this is it. this is the rest of my life. i am essentially alone–but! i am also stuck with dusty in my life. i am stuck with raising four kids mostly by myself while their dad complains that he wants to be more involved and i have to remind myself that it is a trick. their dad is an angler fish dangling “normal family” in front of me and hoping i will take a nibble. because he never actually gets involved even when he can be involved. he doesn’t. and i have to keep reminding myself of that.
which is a lot of fun.

fuck.

so i’m grumpy and moody and do not feel like doing anything even though i know that doing something would help me to feel better.

just putting pen to paper makes me feel better.

pages 18 & 19 AND INKtober 1st

i am pretty happy with the last two pages.
and they were a lot of fun.

i’m not sure about my first INKtober contribution. it was a doodle. no plans. that’s just what came out.
hmmm.
whimsy.
i am hoping to do some experimenting with just using a brush. it might be difficult for me. i do love my pen lines….
i am in a group of INKtoberists on facebook. it is awesome seeing all the different ideas and uses of ink. i have to keep reminding myself that it is not a competition–and that i am not the other artists.
i am me.
and this is what i do….

pages 10 & 11 and a do-over

page 10

two new pages…and then i had to do another version of this page:

page 7

for a laundry list of reasons that i put already in another blog.

page 7(2)

and i like the new version better. i do. but i wish i could stop hating my work. i try really really hard to look at it like someone would who isn’t noticing every little mistake. i try to look at it like i would if it weren’t mine.

that’s the trick, isn’t it?

this has been a difficult project for me for that reason. knowing that it is for someone else and that i can’t just squirrel it away and say, “well nevermind” is difficult for me. if it is a picture only the artist can love–fine. but since i am going to be putting this out in the world, i have that added vulnerability of knowing someone else is going to be looking at it–judging it.

moses jones once received a review from some comic blog. it was not a good review. but i was able to brush it off because i didn’t care what the review said and moses is my baby so who cares what other people think?

do i sometimes care what other people think?
no. i really really don’t.
i mean, i want people to like it…but if they don’t, it’s no big deal.
just like i want people to like me
but i really don’t care what people think of me.
however, i’m still aware of what people might be thinking….
i mean, i don’t live in a vacuum
no matter how hard my shell is
or how tall my walls are
criticism still hurts…

and compliments still confuse me….

my mom liked to tell me, “no man is an island.”
and i would answer her that i was a peninsula.

bunny moon

part of my process
when i am getting familiar with a character
is to draw that character over & over
until i have gotten to know her.

i really like this character
i am excited about being part of her story

i also started another ink stain drawing

IMG_3673

it’s kind of chaotic, but i think i can pull it off
that’s part of the fun for me
making cohesion
out of chaos
that is actually my life
gluing together the good bits
arranging the parts that work
filling in the blanks and drawing out the whimsy
to make a perfect picture…
or something like that.

i mustache you…

does this make me look silly?

i also thought of naming this one “matti-rex” because of a family joke. we know this man named matti who is somewhat flamboyant in his appearance, and one time we hadn’t seen him in awhile and when we did see him, he had a very impressive handlebar mustache. after we left him again, my minions started grabbing anything they could find to use as a mustache and proclaiming, “i am matti!”

it has, of course, become a running joke. even my three year old does it–not having any idea why he does it–just knowing it will get a laugh.

so, matti-rex.

this is one of the inkings i have done–like quite a few others–where overall i am not sure i like it, but certain elements of it really appeal to me. it’s kind of a goof-off drawing. but i did have fun with it. i mean i decided, laying in bed this morning, that the ink stain most looked like a mustache (after a few days of wondering what it was.) then i looked for the face and found a t-rex.

mattirex1

okay…i am going to name it matti-rex. because, why the fuck not?