??? Hours of Art!

It’s New Years Eve! Even though I failed to update regularly, I’m pleased to say that I definitely went over my goal of 100 hours of art this year. Well over. Here are some pictures of some of the stuff I accomplished this year!

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Autumn

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This was actually a project for work – hence the text. This is not something I would have ever done on my own!

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C25k Running Update!

True to form, I haven’t updated this blog since June 🙂

But, I wanted to write out the progress I have made since my original C25k post back in May. I was just getting ready to start the Couch to 5k interval training program. In reality, after that first jog, I didn’t actually start the running program until mid-June. I did it with a friend of mine. I would run the first two workouts of each week on my own, and we would run the third together on Thursday evenings. It was great, because in order to keep up with him, I really needed to do those other two workouts on my own – I couldn’t just wing it! So we did that for 9 weeks, and we “graduated” the program in August. That month, we both ran our very first 5k race!

It was hot, sticky, dusty and all around miserable, and took me around 40 minutes to finish. I was disappointed because in practice, I averaged about 11-12 minute miles, and I was convinced that I would have finished in under 35 minutes. Oh well! I decided that I wouldn’t be discouraged, and I was going to do at least one race every month as a motivator!

So in September, I signed up for another 5k in a park. This was a road race, rather than a trail race, which I am much more comfortable with. The temperature was around 60, which is pretty perfect, and I ran it in just over 31 minutes! I averaged about a 10 minute mile!

October came, and so did the race I was the most nervous about, but also the most excited. It was time for the Six Flags Zombie Fright Run 5k! For anyone who doesn’t know what that is, it’s a 5k run combined with an obstacle course and flag football. You start off with three flags, which zombies throughout the course chase you and try to steal. There aren’t just zombies chasing you though; there are zombies chasing you through water, over walls, under ropes, you name it! Unfortunately, a large stack of hay bales and one zombie claimed me as victim – I ended up re-injuring my knee. Luckily (and stupidly), it was cold enough out (around 30 degrees) and I was wading through waste-deep freezing water so that the swelling in my knee was kept to a minimum, and with the help of my friend and my knee brace I was able to finish the race and even keep jogging parts of it! I paid for the next couples days though when I discovered I could hardly walk.

That set me back, since I couldn’t run for at least two weeks after that incident. So I gave myself plenty of time, and my next race was a Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning! That was a cold one, but I ran it in about 32 minutes and didn’t feel too badly about stuffing my face later that day.

A week and a half later was a Hot Chocolate run, and the race sold out with 5500 participants! I ran it in just over 31 minutes and beat about 1200 people 🙂

To sum it up, running has been going well! For the first time in my life, I actually LIKE running, and I am already signed up for a St. Patrick’s Day 10k (6.2 miles). My goal in 2013 is to run a minimum of 500 miles, and potentially a lot more, and to get my 5k time down to 28 minutes. I am also signed up for Warrior Dash in September! Eek!

Onwards!

P.S. I did end up getting a pair of Vibram Bikilas – they’re WONDERFUL! Best shoes I have ever run in! I will be getting another pair in the spring since I’ve worn my current pair down pretty good!

My Top 15 Most Listened to Albums of Spring 2012

Yesterday was the first day of summer, and I realized how much music I have been listening to this year, especially with Spotify and the 10k miles of driving I’ve done. Here’s what I have been listening to this spring! No reasoning, no reviews, just a list.

15. NeedtoBreathe – The Reckoning

14. fun. – Some Nights

13. Sigur Ros – Valtari

I love this album artwork

12. Blitzen Trapper – American Goldwing

11. Caravan Palace – Caravan Palace

10. Imagine Dragons – Continued Silence EP

9. Andrew Bird – Break It Yourself

8. Bombay Bicycle Club – A Different Kind of Fix

7. The Naked and Famous – Passive Me, Aggressive You

6. Ben Rector – Into The Morning

5. mewithoutYou – Ten Stories

4. The Shins – Port of Morrow

3. M83 – Saturdays=Youth

2. M83 – Hurry Up We’re Dreaming

1. Of Monsters and Men – My Head is an Animal

I can't stop listening....

Who needs wallpaper when you’ve got a sharpie

Can’t decide on a paint color or wallpaper? Grab a marker and go to town. That’s what British artist Charlotte Mann does for a living – and it’s awesome.

Check it out!

Canvas shmanvis

I get tired of painting on canvas, drawing on paper, designing on my computer. You know, the types of things typical artists are expected to do. It takes serious creativity and even courage to venture beyond that.

Also, sometimes it’s illegal 🙂

So hats off to the awesome people who created these works of art!

Things my friends say

Those gears look like flowers! *cries*

Channels are stupid

They’re couchtons!

They can be really angsty if you do it right

There’s a bird n your head, there’s a bird on your head

Why are you so cute Harry Potter…I thought I was your girlfriend Harry Potter…your baby is so cute…*sings* Harry Potter is the best! Harry Potter! Harry Potter! Harry Potter has an egg on his head!

I write curses in my code sometimes

I love Steve Urkel too

Pencil would be easier because this has four points instead of one

He’s such a sexual twelve year old! Waving his wand around all the time! Gosh man! Ridin’ the broom like whaaaaaaaaat

DL you have no toes on

I still have your painting….it keeps falling off my wall

What the heck is density?!

Let’s influence each other positively!! Do you have anymore coffee?!

 

95 Hours of Art

I spent the first 5 hours of my 100 Hours of Art learning a completely new art form: needle felting!

My friend’s mom hosted a felting class at her house in Vermont, so we both thought that sounded like a fun thing to learn. Basically, you start with a poof of clean, undyed wool, like these:

This wool makes up the bulk of the shape, and you can add dyed wool to it later. Dyed wool tends to be more expensive, so it makes sense to use this as the ‘filling’.

The needles, like the ones shown here, have little tiny, barely visible barbs along the sides. For quick work, you’d want more barbs, for meticulous detail work, less. And these needles are VERY sharp! Every single one of the seven ladies doing the class, myself included, drew blood at least once. Here’s a close up of a couple of needles:

See the barbs? Scary little things.

Anyway, you start with a ball of wool, and every time you stab the needle into it, it tangles up the wool fibers more and more until it becomes a firm mass of knots in the shape of your choosing. In our case, we made sheep! I won’t bore you with all of the details, but the process basically looks like this (only much slower).

Unfortunately, I don’t have any pictures of the process, but here is the final product!

Now that I know how to do it, I am dying to make this little guy. Too ambitious, maybe?

Remember Domino Rally?

Domino Rally was one of my favorite toys as a kid. I use the term ‘kid’ loosely, because I’m pretty sure I played with it until I was fifteen. It was that awesome.

I realized a long time ago that my mind makes really strange, disjointed chain of connections that usually results with me making a comment that probably seems like a non sequitur to everyone except for me. I will give you an example of one chain of thought that I had today, that led me to think about Domino Rally.

On the way into work this morning, I was listening to Florence + the Machine. This is somewhat out of character for me because I so rarely find a female artist that I like, but I’m mildly obsessed with Florence. Anyway, Drumming Song was playing, which is a catchy song but doesn’t have much lyrical depth.

“I swallow the sound and it swallows me whole
Till there’s nothing left inside my soul
As empty as that beating drum
But the sound has just begun

As I move my feet towards your body
I can hear this beat it fills my head up
And gets louder and louder
It fills my head up and gets louder and louder

There’s a drumming noise inside my head
That starts when you’re around
I swear that you could hear it
It makes such an all mighty sound”

Since a good chunk of connections that I make relate back to Doctor Who, I naturally started to think about The Master and the drumming he perpetually heard in his head that drove him to madness. 1234  1234  1234…

This led me to think of my favorite movie, Ink. (Ink is on Netflix streaming, watch it IMMEDIATELY! Please excuse the first few words of the movie, though) In the movie, there is a pathfinder, Jacob, who can hear the beat of the universe. 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4. (SPOILER ALERT – don’t watch the video I’m linking to and skip the rest of this paragraph if you plan on watching the movie, which I know of course you will because it’s awesome) He can hear the rhythm of life around him, and because of that, he can then figure out exactly how to change the path  of someone’s life, by interrupting its flow. Jacob causes a chain reaction of events that eventually cause John’s car crash, which lands him in the same hospital where his daughter is lying in a coma, and they are finally reunited.

So then I start thinking about chain reactions and how awesome the Rube Goldberg machine was in OK Go’s music video “This Too Shall Pass”.

Which logically led me right to Domino Rally.

Of course, this progression probably only took a couple of seconds in my head. But I think someone would probably have been pretty confused if they asked me “Do you know Florence + the Machine?” and I responded with “Yeah! And wasn’t Domino Rally AWESOME??”

100 Hours of Art

I’ve made more New Years Resolutions this year than ever, which in a couple months will probably seem like a really stupid idea. Create/stick to a budget (and oh, what a sexy spreadsheet I created for that one!), stop using chemicals on my body (more on that later),  read the Bible in a year (my whole house church is doing this one…so far so good!)…

I think the resolution I am most excited about is what I am calling 100 Hours of Art. This year, I want to spend at least 100 of my hours on artwork of some form or another. It doesn’t matter when or where I use these hours, or what I use them on. It can be on that Eat a Peach painting I owe my Parrain (sorry sorry!! It’s  SO close!) or just random doodling, or photography or crocheting. It just has to be something creative.

It will be well documented. I am creating a spreadsheet (no surprise there) for the hours used/hours left and I hope to take a picture after every hour used, which I will post here with a description of the project. So 100 hours, 100 pictures!

 

 

I think I use parenthesis too much.

Scribble art

I know I’ve posted this before, but it’s just too fun not to share again! It’s a simple site by Mario Klingemann where you draw and the lines make connections with one another. It’s a really cool effect.

I'll have to try this using my new graphics tablet, because I'm awful with a mouse