Thursday, April 10, 2008

Technicalities and Disciplines


Lots of project work going on. This is a good thing for me, pushing limits. I stretch out, working on large scale pieces. This "operating on the narrow edge of failure" is part of the curriculum for artistic growth and possibly as important to my own psyche as salt.
As I write, Orion steadily bounces a balloon against my head. Of course I could tell him to stop, but I don't. I enjoy the challenge (yes, I'm a kid with wrinkles) and, after all, I did interrupt a perfectly good game of throwing balloons at the ceiling fan to get a sudden idea down on paper.
Orion gets it. I get it. I'll be back to balloons in a minute. The older kids have agreed that "Hang On While I Jot Something Down" will be on my gravestone.
I'm fine with that.
Luckily, at this stage in my career, I've met experts in many different fields who are happy to help me in my pursuit of near failure.
I needed to create a tiny star field, so turned to the expertise of astronomical artist Joe Bergeron and used a toothbrush to create near microscopic points of light on black. The first couple of tries produced amazing results, on my glasses. I'll be picking stars out of my hair for days.
But eventually, I got what I wanted.
I'm making good use of the jigsaw panels. I didn't expect to be working on Strange Light as well as Strange Machines, but this is what happens when I hang out with brilliant author types like Larry Niven. We started this thing and now it's rolling along on its own momentum. Nothing to do but roll with it.
In between, Orion and I have tentatively begun swimming again, in our wetsuits. Just in time too. With all this project work, it provides a good balance.
Have a good Thursday.

8 comments:

Rubius said...

Kristina jumps around in glee at the new yellow poppets!!!!!

Have fun Lisa. Sudden ideas are the best. Let them run rampant over you. Let your spangled glasses show you starscapes you didn't know were there. Listen to the boink of the balloon and know that sound brings smiles to the faces of children everywhere... everywhere that there are adults who can still appreciate a good balloon game and laugh like kids.

Keep working, keep playing... as a reader I am honoured to be able to share in your creative process and mindset. Thank you.

lisa said...

rubius: you might be interested to know that the thing I stopped to write was a balloon game that might be played at VCon with either kids or adults. It's in my notebook (yes THE notebook) under "VCon program notes.")

Rubius said...

I am delighted. It will be such a pleasure to see you again.

I love balloons.. it must be said. One of my boss's children had a big yellow punch balloon last month... the type that has a handle and you can punch and punch and punch it and it always bounces back. I had forgotten how much fun it was. It was terribly sad to see it in the garbage last week.

Holly said...

did you rescue it from the garbage or was it broken? I LOVE punch balloons! the sound that they make is one of the happiest things I can think of.

sylvia said...

I've lurked awhile but wanted to comment on this post - it really made me think. I'm still thinking about it, actually.

http://backspace.blog.me.uk/on-the-edge-of-failure

Rubius said...

sadly twas a dead Punch balloon... I suppose Judy got to it first.

If twas alive I wouldn't have hesitated to retrieve it but I think the 5-year old punch it's lights out.

lisa said...

sylvia: I read your post and appreciate your thoughts. I'll be the first to admit that 'operating on the edge of failure' is a form of mental thrill-seeking for me. On the other hand, it is how I grow as an artist, writer and human being. By pushing past the level of work I'm comfident of I usually end up succeeding and that's how I grow. Thanks! Cool format on your blog---takes a little more work to read the handwriting, but has a very personal feel---like Nick Bantock's Griffin and Sabine. nice work

sylvia said...

Oh I'd forgotten about Griffin and Sabine - what a wonderful book (and how thrilling to even be peripherally compared to it).

I definitely need to work on writing neater. Thanks for the kind words. :)