Tag Archives: past

Dragon and the Whole Day of Collaborative Navel Gazing

Oh, my goodness, no, I did NOT go to the beach. This is still one of the cold places of the world. But I drove *past* the beach. And I *thought* about the beach.

Oh, my goodness, no, I did NOT go to the beach. This is still one of the cold places of the world. But I drove *past* the beach. And I *thought* about the beach.

Today I met up with an old friend and we somehow spent 10+ hours talking: past, present, future. When you have been friends with someone more or less continuously for decades, you have a lot of things you can talk about. You can talk about hilarious things you did in the past, and people you used to know, and you can talk about what you are doing now, and what other people are doing, and you can talk about what you want to do in the future. You can get really introspective and deconstructive. You can talk about what things meant, then and now, and what they might mean later. You can cast the eye of experience upon your own innocence, and you can laugh about things that were once terribly serious to you. You can parse out what’s important, and you can articulate why it’s important. You can compare and contrast past and present, and you can compare and contrast each others’ lives. You can visit places you used to visit regularly but haven’t seen in years. You can contact other old friends and repeat the entire process in a smaller space, either by video chatting them from a meaningful spot in the old neighborhood, or by meeting up with them someplace new in the neighborhood where they live now.

As a bonus, if you don’t visit the old neighborhood very often, and your friends are reasonably successful adults, and you are as cool as Dragon, your friends will insist on buying all your food and drinks, which is super nice when you are unemployed.

Of course, if you spent the entire day doing this, you will have very little time to do the things you usually do in a day, like draw comics and write blog posts. And you can come home and ask yourself how important it is that you honor your own commitment to yourself, particularly after you’ve spent the day explaining to your old friends why you quit your very lucrative job to start a project that ultimately pays about $1 a day. And you can realize that it’s really, really important. So you just do it.

Also today The Man was sad to be far away from Dragon and one of the Misseses Kitty had to go to the hospital but will hopefully be OK. So send love to The Man and Mrs. Kitty because Dragon cannot be there to take care of them.

The Trickster’s Hat Part 3

If you’re familiar with Nick Bantock’s work, you know that collage figures prominently. Collages are fun; throughout my life, I’ve often created them, not with the intention of producing a work of great art. They offer a method of self-expression, but they’ve never seemed to require any great amount of creativity.

Exercise 4, Part 1: early childhood. I was a bit of an alien.

Exercise 4, Part 1: early childhood. I was a bit of an alien.

Exercise 4 began with 3 cardboard squares and asked for an autobiographical triptych, complicated by the restriction that the images must all be black and white. In fact, in the 21st century, black and white printing isn’t terribly common. Color printing is so very cheap, and so much more eye catching. Even newspapers are printed in color, but I didn’t have much in the way of newspaper either, since it’s the 21st century.

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Exercise 4, Part 2: Adolescence. Dark and confusing, morbid and upside down, with moments of hope.

For the most part, the materials I had on hand were old National Geographic and Smithsonian magazines. I found a few usable images in the local free entertainment paper, The Tucson Weekly, and one or two bits in my husband’s trade magazines. Toward the end, as the squares began to fill up, I utterly ran out of useful black and white images and finished with a couple things printed in black on colored paper: the invitation to an annual volunteer breakfast I never attend, the map to the Arizona Renaissance Festival, the thank you notes we had custom printed for the wedding.

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Exercise 4, Part 3: The Present. My life is basically awesome. I am older and wiser, with a supportive life partner and plenty of experience. I know who I am.

I was pleased with the final product. These panels do represent my life, even if I don’t feel that collages require much talent or effort. Talking about these images is complicated, though; they’re very personal and meaningful, even with the limits set on the exercise. But collages are easy. I still wanted to learn to draw better.