Another book recommendation

Howdy!
I just finished reading “The Compound Effect” by Darren Hardy and it is truly inspiring and motivating. So much so, that I wanted to share it here. I am going to read it again, just to reinforce anything that I may have missed.

The idea is that if you are determined to change your habits and behavior, or improve your skills, or want to get physically fit or see any kind of improvement in your life, you need to be consistent. That’s all. Just keep making that effort to improve and stay consistent, and when you hit a plateau, just push the effort a little harder, and you will become that dream person you’ve always wanted to be!

You can reduce your own bad habits with this method, too. If you decide to, every day, cut your calorie intake by 250 cal., after a year you will see a significant change! It’s the effect that compounding brings. I’ve heard of this idea when it comes to finance and investing, but never really thought of the concept of how it can apply to every day life.

Just like that video I shared here, probably a year ago, that I found to be so inspiring. The guy said that he would draw every day. It didn’t have to be a good drawing, and to get himself started on the days he didn’t feel like drawing he would tell himself to just draw one line, but he did it every day. At the end of the video, his drawing improved by so much!! Can you imagine the improvement over a year, or 5 years, or 20 years?? It’s the compound effect of working at something consistently.

Anyway, this is the book, hope you feel inspired to read it too:

Clean Slate, and Happy New Year!

Happy New Year, everyone!!

Here we are, now it’s 2018. Hopefully you are all feeling inspired to get some creative ideas out there on paper, canvas, computer, on a recording, or any other creative expression!

I believe that we, as humans, are meant to create things. We are supposed to create. Do you believe this too? It makes sense, if you look at all the different forms of life here on Earth. So, why aren’t you creating something now??? And if you already are doing something, are you working to make it better and better?

I only ask this, because I struggle with this question for myself all the time. And still, I procrastinate getting anything done. The only way to get really good at something is to just do it, and get some practice, so what does it matter that it is shitty? (this is exactly what I struggle with myself. Of course, I want everything I create to be perfect right off the bat, LOL)

I keep looking at a blank wall in our kitchen at home and every time I see it, I am reminded that I haven’t done anything to begin my ‘great work of art’ to go on that wall. The thing is, whenever I go to places like Urban Home I see wall coverings that to me, looks like I can do it, but better. And I can personalize it too! But I still procrastinate and put it low in my priority list. But, why? If I know I can do this, why don’t I do it??? I’m hoping I’m not alone with this. Sigh.

So, today, on Jan. 2, 2018, I have finally begun to paint a large canvas that hopefully will be good enough to go on our kitchen wall. I’ve been researching feng shui ideas for the position in our kitchen (southwest = yellow, orange, red… like fire) and since I’m fascinated with doing more landscapes, I am attempting to do a Fall scene. Doesn’t matter if I fail at this point. Why not just do it, and learn from any mistakes???

So, here I go!!

I hope that any of this has resonated with you, whether you are an artist or writer, or just venturing out into your desire, whatever it may be.

Happy New Year, I sincerely mean it!!!

Works in Progress

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Hey everyone!

I’m finally getting back into painting in acrylics again. I’m forever fascinated by landscapes so I figure I will try out a few. I also did a little sunflower piece too.

Just getting back into it, practice makes perfect, right?

It’s good to just do some little studies, because my real plan is to make some large paintings for the house. We’ve had our house for 8 years now and still there are some bare walls. Every time I go to places that sell decorations and I get to the prints/paintings section, I think that I can do these much better. So why haven’t I done anything? (with the exception of a few paintings I did a couple years ago) Am I being lazy? I think it’s just fear of hating what I paint. It’s fear of the unknown, maybe? Also, finding the time seems to be difficult. My husband has been wonderful- encouraging me to paint all the time. But I keep doing other tasks, making this a lower priority.

It’s time to put creativity into a higher bracket. Being creative really is a gift that we all have as humans, why don’t we shine like we’re supposed to?

Anyway, I hope everyone has a beautiful and happy holiday season!!!

Mastery

Hello again, I’m back!

I’ve been working on “A Star Is Born” for a small vfx company, since last September and wrapping up on it tomorrow. It’s on the Warner Brothers Lot in Burbank, and it’s been so fun getting to work at that location! I love how everything is different every day, when you walk around the different stages and backlot areas.

Anyway, I’ve been listening to a great audiobook that I wanted to share here: “Mastery” by Robert Greene. I’ve been meaning to read this for some time now, and only recently have been seeing some serendipitous reminders of it. It was coming up on my YouTube recommendations, for instance. So, I decided to give it a go.

It’s SUCH a great book, especially for aspiring artists! It doesn’t matter if you want to be an artist, a scientist, a businessperson, or musician or whatever… all of these (or whatever you wish to pursue) requires dedication and the courage to just dive in and do whatever it is you want to do! It talks about getting the necessary practice, finding mentors, believing in yourself, and sticking up for yourself too, when things get rough. I’m not finished with the book yet (only about 1/2 way so far) and I’m finding it to be so inspiring.
I know that I’ll be reading it a few more times.

What’s most interesting about the book is that there are many historical examples of famous people and what they went through to pursue their dreams, such as Benjamin Franklin, Charles Darwin and Leonardo da Vinci. I love biographies because I’ll remember that everyone is human and not some elevated amazing lucky person – everyone has to go through difficulties to become the master of their specialized skill.

I’ve been missing this blog, and thinking about how I can continue to write more consistently here. I feel strongly that I should just tell stories and when I have something new to share from my artwork, I’ll share that here as well.
I have a lot of stories, but what I really want is to share my progress as an artist.

Thank you for your time, and be sure to pick up “Mastery” as a truly inspirational book!

Mastery

Hello, again!

Hi everyone,

It’s the eve of my birthday, and I decided to work on some paintings for our house, starting tonight.

Of course, I’ve thought of doing this for probably a few years now and even focused on what to paint, but I haven’t executed my dreams yet.

I hear about how we need to just act on our ideas and not just keep thinking about it. So here I go, I will begin tonight. Although I felt inspired to write about it, tonight.

Last weekend my husband and I went to Blick Art supplies in Pasadena to pick up a bunch of supplies so now I am on the hook to produce some really great paintings for our home. I am looking forward to it, but I still worry about failure in getting it to look as nice as I imagine. Sigh. Maybe this is something a lot of artists go through.

I think about this blog a lot, too. I think that I should share all my stories here, for fun, and also to share any wisdom I have learned along the way. Not just in my career but in my life.

Oh by the way, I started a job a month ago. It is in Burbank, at the actual Warner Brothers studio lot. It’s great for me because the commute cuts my usual one by 1 hour each way every day. It’s fantastic!!! Plus, I love walking around the lot throughout the day so I see many interesting things I’d like to share here.

Okay, time for me to actually start on my paintings! I had this inspiration within the past year to do paintings that would be feng shui themed for each room. I’m interested in what comes up with this. I’m inspired, actually!
I want to start with our kitchen. I’m thinking yellows, reds and white to keep with the feng shui idea. It’s something that is interesting to me and I’ve been dabbling in studying this idea for a bit of time now. Time for me to get started!

Thank you for taking the time to read this. Cheers!
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Time off

Hey there,

I was so excited about getting time off about a month and a half ago, because I could finally have time to do all of the things I want to do, versus the things I have to do.

Well… I’ve spent most of that time enjoying sleeping in and when my husband also got the same time off, instead of going on vacation together we stayed home to work on projects. We also joined CrossFit together, which has proven to me to be a really really great thing and I know I want to stick with it- to get as fit and healthy as I possibly can.

Now, after all those weeks off so far, I am finally getting to working on some art. And once I got the ball rolling, I’m obsessed with it at this point, yay!

I want to share an excellent book, if you are a creative type who tends to procrastinate. Or, just someone who is looking for some inspiration with whatever you dream about making/creating/doing.  It’s called “The War of Art” by Steven Pressfield. I finished it a couple of days ago, and it’s inspired me tremendously!  Here is a picture:

I’ve also been working on painting a birdhouse, which is pretty fun!  I originally bought the unpainted birdhouse from Michael’s arts and crafts store, thinking I would paint it and put it up in our backyard. Then, as my lovely mother-in-law’s birthday is approaching, I decided she would love something like this as a present. I am really getting into working on this! I started applying things that I learned from the book such as: designing what I paint on it myself, from my heart/inspiration (as opposed to what I think she might like) which is fueling my creativity.  And, knowing that I’m doing this for someone I love, really inspires me to keep going with it and not stop until I think it is finished. So here is my WIP of this so far:

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Take care, everyone! Happy Summer to you, keep creating!

 

Diligence

Hey there,

At one point a few posts ago, I said I will be writing a new blog every day. Wow, I do admire those who stick to that task!  Some blog writers admit that they have nothing to say when they sit down to write sometimes, and some how the words just flow eventually.

I read a book about 20 yrs ago called, “If You Can Talk, You Can Write” and I still believe in the philosophy.  The book said, that you should just sit and write whatever is on your mind and would illustrate the following: “blah, blah, blah, blah… Gold!”  Meaning, eventually you will meander to an interesting story and then just focus upon that, and write about it.

What I have basically learned is, a writer is a storyteller. That’s all, nothing intimidating about that. What’s really intimidating (at least, to me) is that what you write and publish, is there forever in print. So you start thinking more seriously on what it is you want to share… thinking of your audience.  I like to do this for myself, to see my own progress but I have to admit that if you have anyone else reading you start to feel accountable and set goals to put something out there, consistently.

Which I think is a good thing, if you want to see any progress. So in other words, I do see the benefit in sticking with this blog- writing.

I thought about also including some stories about my past adventures, just for fun. Just to get them out there.  My rule for myself is that they have to be interesting or funny stories. That’s all.

Alright, with that said, I’m going back to my main theme of posting artistic and creative progress.

Here, I have a clip from the movie “Her”, where I was told to remove all of the Chinese writing on the buildings, since they shot this particular scene in Shanghai.  I asked if I could replace the sign on the left with the words “Rose”. I was given permission to do this, to my excitement. My usual job in visual effects is to remove things that the filmmaker doesn’t want shown, such as removing wires from stuntmen’s bodies, etc., and someone else replaces it if necessary to the shot.  I was thrilled I had a chance to replace it with something I created! “ROSE” is mine, yay!! The visual effects supervisor had me add the extra flair to the plain block letters I originally created.

I was working at Digital Domain and then, the facility was about to move from the Venice location to Playa Vista, CA. I thought “Rose” was fitting because it was located on Rose Ave. at that time.

A Few of my recent Landscape Paintings

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Hey there,

I’m making a point of it to write here every day, at least every day that I am not working my long hours. Maybe this will become a habit and I’ll want to write every day anyway. Or at least a few days a week.

So, a few months ago (maybe it’s been a year already! Time sure does fly..!) I created 3 little landscape paintings and then I framed them and put them up on a wall inside my home. I have felt inspired for a while now, to fill up my blank walls with paintings that I made.

Today, I plan on continuing with my matte painting online class. Soon, I will have something to show here… always a work in progress!

Keep painting and creating!

 

Looking through one of my old sketchbooks

Hey there, hello again!

I have this sketchbook that I carry around with me from time to time, but sadly, I don’t draw in nearly as much as I’d like.  I realized yesterday that it is time to retire it as there are only like 2 blank pages left.

Not that those blank pages couldn’t be filled! I just got uninspired with the content from the last few years of drawing in it. Basically, I think my work was starting to suck over the past maybe 8 yrs or so?  What’s interesting though, is that there was a window of time documented in the sketchbook where I was having a really good run and making some interesting art.

This was circa 2006. I remember I was working at Sony Imageworks at the time, living in Venice, CA., and what I think inspired me greatly was that my friend and coworker Len was getting an artists’ group together on a weeknight every week, to draw and talk about art. I learned so much back then! I also began to use these little art pens that have one fine tip at one end and the other end is like a paintbrush. It began this path of mine that led me to just let my mind wander and doodle and then refine my doodles until it made an interesting picture.

At that time in my life, since I lived in Venice, I decided to spend my weekends riding my bicycle down the beach bike path, bringing my sketchbook with me. So I’d ride along, exploring, and then make stops where I would draw, and comment on what I was drawing, and take in the scenery and then move on again. I spent a whole summer, maybe two, doing this and it was great!!!

Anyway.  I thought I’d share some of the best sketchbook entries from this time period. I thought it was fun to read some of the comments I’d made about people-watching and general observations on things at that time frame. (for instance, I had a crush on a guy at work that wasn’t panning out to what I wished it would be… if I only knew that only 4 years later I’d marry a wonderful guy that I hadn’t met yet!)  Also, it was REALLY fun to just scribble something down and then elaborate my artwork to whatever seemed fun to go with, as you will see in some of the color scans I’d made. It was fun to look at this stuff so I thought it might make a good inspirational post to want to create more art.

At some point after that, however, I just stopped drawing and creating as much interesting stuff, so when I returned to this sketchbook and drew anything, it discouraged me because it wasn’t coming out to be so interesting or even very good. So for years since, I drew in it from time to time but it wasn’t making me feel great about the content. That sucks! I resolve to start a new sketchbook and draw in it nearly every day that I can. Maybe even the stuff that sucks is okay. Just as long as I’m drawing/doodling/making art.

Okay, here goes… I’m posting many scans I just made tonight of my old sketchbook, for inspiration!

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