Tuesday, January 22, 2008


Argh. In drawing class today I found that I do not like drawing. It's just for now. In another three weeks I will be happy again. At the start of summer, the kids and I will be going on walks and I will want to go back to the car after twenty minutes on the trail. By the end of summer I will be thinking that I am capable of walking to the North Pole and my kids will be running up mountain sides and not even thinking they are steep. (They turn into mountain goats over the summer.) Right now I am in this phase artistically. I so badly want to give up drawing and never draw again. Going to class right now is painful. I do not want to stay in it. It is too late to change; I have to "buck up" and hold on.

I have no depth perception. My eyes do not work together, so my vision is not stereoscopic. It happened when I was a baby-- something about a so-called lazy eye that literally drifted way out of range. My parents paid for three or four operations to correct it as best as they could get it. This problem or condition affects how I see things. Both eyes see slightly different things and at a bit of a different angle. They switch off at different times. I cannot shoot consistently, raquet ball is impossible and drawing is a challenge. This being said, my vision had not gotten worse since I was 9 years old probably because they don't get overworked. One gets tired and the other takes over.

Today we had to draw perspective. I turned into a whiny baby. I was literally on the verge of tears-- no, I started to tear up more than once. I want my work to look like it is supposed to look. My teacher is very encouraging and said to me, "I am glad that you have this condition because I want to emphasize to everyone about their own style. You don't chose a style-- you have it because of a U-Haul of experiences and conditions. This will follow you as an artist. You will learn techniques to enhance your style, but this is your artistic fingerprint." She said that I have to do the exercises even though I am not rendering them like they look when drawn by other people. I did want to get out of the lessons. They feel useless but she said that in a couple of classes we will draw the statue that we drew in the first class and we will see a huge change. My style of drawing is thick with chiaroscuro, a heavy combination of lights and darks. I will be drawing my church, a tiny chapel that is dark with light, as my next week's projects which I will post here. My professor says that I have to learn to do what lends itself to my style and smiled when we were discussing ideas and I described it. She said, "Tea will be the artist of light!" My mood lightened considerably. I still shed a few tears. Drawing class was not fun. I was grateful to my professor for saying nice things to me each time she passed my easel. She said that the interesting thing with my use of chiaroscuro is that it adds depth just because it is chiaroscuro.

I'm pretty good at drawing people. I like to draw people. I love to draw birds and plants, too, but they are more up close studies.

When I was in high school I did a lot of public speaking. I was terrible at drama. I was not allowed to cry as a child and this affected me-- not badly, but it made how I delivered acting pieces. I was great at humor and it shocked my teacher when she handed me a very deep piece of work and I read it and had the class laughing. I did not know why I made it sound funny, but it was my dryness. I was very good at humor and got the timing immediately. Of course had you known who my father was, you would know that it was natural. I was invited to direct a play. My family who raised me did not fight; we avoided fights (so ill feelings just got worse!) The play was about a couple fighting. The only thing was, my couple did not fight. They were saying words but I did the blocking so that the audience knew they were fighting, but the couple seemed unaware of it. Every night the whole audience laughed quite hard. The whole, the entire audience-- except for the night that my parents came and they sat in silence, furious with me. Their friends who joined them were laughing. It was obvious that I did not have my fellow actors on that stage-- it was my parents! I didn't know it until my mom's friend mentioned a gesture and said it was my dad when he was mad, and that I'd taught the actress to walk like my mother. It was what I knew. My parents did not speak to me for three days, and when they did, my dad said, "If I say anything will you put it on stage next week?" They were ticked! As it was then with me learning how to act and portray what I knew and choosing what I was good at, I am still doing this in other art forms!

Oh- something that I am happy about! My hair is growing out! My hair since I started having babies in 1996 has been scraggly. Last week I had it permed and colored and my hair stylist didn't need to take off any length. For the first time in 12 years, it is at my shoulders. This may sound like no big deal, but it is. It is getting thicker. My stylist said it's what 2 years of no pregnancies and a good diet does to a woman. I also weigh 150 pound on my 5'6" frame-- but it's curvy, not fat. I'll take the curves and hair in place of the emaciated look that I had going for so many years!

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