My lovely friend Cislyn and I embarked on our year-long project… nearly a year ago. CC:Otherworlds has been an amazing, fulfilling, challenging, and rewarding project. No, seriously. I know those are silly buzz words, but they’re also all super true.
We drew a prompt out of a hat every 2 weeks for an entire year. For an entire year, we each took that prompt and went off (sometimes collaborating, sometimes not) and made Things. Cislyn is a fantastic, fun, and weird writer who finds amazing twists on the world. She produced some incredible short fiction and a few lovely poems. And I go off and make an illustration. Or, in one case, a flip book. And in another case, a tiny coloring book.
Our very last prompt draw was last Friday… which means in a week and a half, our project will be complete.
I’ve never done a year long project before, or anything longer, and it’s amazing both how shockingly fast it went (holy crap an entire YEAR has gone by??) but also how truly challenging it was to do this project on top of all my other commitments, and not lose steam on anything. I’m going to miss CC:Otherworlds. A lot. It’s been our baby, and I couldn’t have asked for a better creative partner.
Do you want to see what we’re up to and support us? This will be your very last chance on this project. If you ever thought to yourself, “Hm, maybe… but I don’t want to commit!” then this is your chance. It’s the last one!
Come check us out! I promise we do good work. 🙂
Now that I’ve gotten the taste for plein air painting, I’m starting to refine my technique for going on the adventures themselves. The first time I went out, two weekends ago, I had to stuff my entire pochade box into my backpack– it worked, but it wasn’t elegant, and it made biking a bit uncomfortable as the whole thing was knobby.
This past weekend I went out on Saturday, and I got a little smarter about it. I borrowed my roommate’s fancier bike side-bag– one of those lovely clip-on types. The entire pochade box fits in, which means I don’t have to bring a backpack at all– much more pleasant biking!
This was in Tenny Park in Madison. I hunkered down in the dwindling shade to paint a neat stone bridge. The painting itself wasn’t a particularly amazing result, but every time I go out, I feel like I learn something. And if that’s not fantastic, I don’t know what is.
Do I plan on going back out next weekend? Why yes, yes I do. 🙂
Do you know what’s great? The outside. Know what’s even better? Doing art in it.
Plein air painting is new to me, but I’m just behind the curve ball by several hundred (thousand??) years– it’s a well honed and time honored tradition among artists. Take your fancy art box, take your paints, and go sit somewhere for a while. Preferably while putting the paints onto a surface of some sort and calling it a painting at the end of the day.
It’s something tremendously pleasing and exciting… and also something I need to practice a lot more before it becomes a proper skill. Good news: practicing means going outside on adventures and making art!
This past weekend I took my fancy pochade box and my tripod and a set of acrylics and I headed out by bike to the local botanical gardens to plunk down and get some real-life practice in painting. I didn’t take a huge number of pictures, but here’s my basic set up– I already know a few things I’ll tweak next go around.
And here’s a slightly better (if over-exposed) picture of the painting itself.
I learned a ton from my first foray, and I’m deeply excited to head out again. I’ve got Sunday of this coming weekend earmarked for my second plein air painting adventure….