26 August, 2018

Who the hell are you?

It struck me that I don't really know who you are. (except you, Mom. Hi!) I write to you but  probably not as often as I should.  The reason for my tardy attention to correspondence lies in that first sentence . I don't know who I am writing to!!

So, who the are you?!
I'd love to know!

I know the comments section suck and the hoops you have to jump through make you feel like a circus lion( pissed of and dangerous, right?! Also, with amazing hair). So , here's the thing, just email me directly.  jennie@jenniedegroot.com

I write and tell you all about my work, the kids, my travels and workshop experiences, some mad things that happen and studio life, but I don't know who you are. Tell me who you are and why you read this blog. If I know, then I write.

Ok, today I shall write to Mom and Barb( because I know you two!) and others.

Spring it itching to burst forth and I am looking forward to warmer , brighter days . All my painting have been rather dark recently and I have let them be dark. Today I mixed a batch of bright green. It sat like a blob of snot( this is Pulitzer prize describing) on the palette, but I left it there.  I had made it and that meant that my sub-conscious may be trying to tell me something. Maybe lighten up a little? maybe spring is almost here? maybe green is the colour of jealousy( it is! Old Green eyes!) and the colour of the land around me at the moment? Whatever, chartreuse green snot blob. I will work it out eventually.

I am listening to art podcasts at the moment.
My favourite is a New Zealand podcast called Breaking Art .....you can also find it on iTunes....It's my fave at the moment because it's specifically about NZ artists and our environment in NZ. The other is John Dalton, an irishman who has the gift of the gab and interviews wonderful artists, international artists (and a few of my heroes.) He's a good laugh and has a wonderful accent.

It's exam times for the boys, which translates into a hilarious combinations of stress, ordinary teenage- ring behaviour and moments of profound insight and clarity that make me feel like I am in an emotional pinball game(yes, I am the ball).
All my life, my father would say "read the questions" prior to every exam....and it's good advice. So today, as I was dropping Lucien at school for his physics exam, I rolled the car window down and bellowed" READ THE QUESTIONS" and drove away laughing as he stared daggers after me . I broke the rule of " Don't speak to me when I am at school because your very presence is embarrassing" but also, it appeared my fathers voice was coming out of my mouth! Or at least, that's what I heard.

Back to the painting.

Oh look. A Mondrian landscape with a green line. It seems I have become a town planner.

Time to go pick the kid up from his physics exam. I hope he read the question.

Here's mine

Who are you?

12 August, 2018

Runaway brain syndrome and Spark

My brain needs constant attention as it has this overactive curiosity gland that gets me into a lot of trouble if it is allows free reign .Runaway brain syndrome. We all know a curiosity gland is a real thing, don't we? (It's not) .
I know I need to direct my curiosity and I have a list as long as my arm , pinned on my noticeboard,  of topics I can investigate if  and when I need to. I need to do this often as I am easily distracted into tangential internet discussions that end up with me ordering welding kits online or trying to knit scandinavian jerseys or learning how to cure animals skins  etc This list needs curating because it must be

  • interesting...fascinating, in fact
  • relevant to being creative
  • non-dangerous( see above)
  • keep me on task
  • inexpensive(see ordering of welding gear)
  • keep me out of trouble
In the medical professions, Continued Medical Education (CME) is sometimes even built into budgets and timetables.  I envy Charles this opportunity. Last week, Wintec hosted SPARK and this is a local convention that I consider to be  MY Continued Professional Education.Spark international Festival of Music, Media, Arts and Design is in it's 20th year and is always worth a look see.I loved being a physical part of something. So different from my solitary routine in the studio.  This year the lectures were streamed live and I am still watching some I missed ,online. It was a lineup I enjoyed although there were not the numbers of visual artists I would like to see and listen to....... but I am biased. Angela Tiatia, Sara r Radin, Ant Donovan, Bob Jahnke, Jason Naylor, Pecha Kucha, Weasel Gallery opening of telly Tuita and Rachel Hope Peary's final Honours critique were just a few I got to see. All were worth it in ways I did not expect and am grateful for. Go look them up on Facebook or Instagram.

I added so much to my list of things to research, people to look at, work to consider and theories to ponder. I shall be busy for a while .
So, my Trade Me shopping has taken a back seat and I've shelved the scandinavian knitting patterns and put google translator away. I'm on to learning some new skills and hopefully can share more about those in the near future.

Curiosity is a wondrous thing. I am an autodidact. I am always wanting to learn new things and I direct most of my own learning (with the help of others when I ask). I love a good workshop, I read voraciously, my art library is growing  and and I never worry about spending money on books. Clothes, yes. Books, no. The internet is slightly dangerous as it is so monetised these days, but I manage to look and learn (Thanks YOUTube).

So, the curiosity gland has a prescription that can be filled from the list for the next while.

Thank you, Dr Spark.

Me, in green, orange shoes, having an out of body experience.

Jason Naylors VW Combi

Bob Jahnke's talk on some of the technical aspects of his sculpture creations. 

I stole all these off the SPARK Facebook page. 

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