Saturday, April 05, 2008

The Discipline of Getting Brain to Paper

I'm working on keeping a better notebook. I love notebooks, blank journals, sketch books, but I've never been good at sticking with one from start to finish. I tend to scribble like a mad scientist when I'm visualizing. Possibly I'm afraid to let details escape before I can capture them on paper. It's a discipline, I'm learning, to keep a good one. Bent's notebook is beautiful, archival, filled with drawings and the ultra neat notes of a serial killer.

But, I'm gaining on it. I remind myself to slow down, take time to write things out. I've pre-numbered my pages, so I won't be tempted to tear any out. And I've noticed that I'm developing a decent habit of reaching for this notebook---instead of whatever scrap of paper is nearest.

The other part is always knowing where the notebook is.

Anyway, if these things don't work, my next plan is to reach into my 'other' life, when I did keep crazy-meticulous notes, in the laboratory. I found a great place to order lab books (they have great sketch books and project books too.) The Book Factory Their site/service and books are great.

Here's a weird little bit that likely belongs in the Nuts and Bolts Forum. Bent was watching a program on one of the science channels called "Mystery Dinosaur." The paleontologist needed to make a mold of some of the fossils, and instead of building a molding box from wood or paper, he used Lego blocks. They're tight fitting, don't stick to mold rubber and can be configured into any shape he needs. Super-Maker smart!!! We ordered two big base panels (Amazon stores)and a pile of blocks. We'll use one in the studio for molds, the other will be mounted in the wall of Orion's room, so he can build 'sideways.' Let him learn a bit about gravity.


I've been really deep into working on "Strange Machines" and "Strange Light." The machine is moving along nicely---thanks to the puzzle panels! It's going to be all mechanical, no electricity.

And I have the first image for "Strange Light" partially finished.

That said, I'll get the "Strange Roads" signed copies and "Spook" Poppets in the store this weekend. Please forgive me! I've had a great week of studio and geek out, totally immersing myself into book projects.

But today is Saturday, and I promised Orion we'd check out the pool today. We may need wetsuits, or we may brave the cold or we may wait another day. The mercury will decide for us.

Have a great weekend.


K said...

I have the same problem with notebooks. I've started keeping two - one at home, one at the office for lunchbreaks - but I'm still scribbling things on Post-Its and then losing them. (And I'm an archivist. Sad, isn't it?)

The Lego is a great idea. I'm a big fan of Lego for whatever purpose, though.

mordicai said...

I used to be a start-scribbler, but then I just decided to abandon "order." Which is to say, rather than say "no, no, this notebook is only for ____" & not jot a thought in it, I sort of made them a lot more grab-bag.

Also, is that an intellect devourer?

lisa said...

K: I've started attaching things---like photos, sketches on random paper and post it notes--with glue or tape. At least there in there.

mordicai: right. the notebook I'm using currently has headers. I use one notebook for everything. I could never keep up with more.
Nope it's not. Is that from MTG?

lisa said...

Yikes! at least (they're) in there.

hmmm....maybe they are intellect devourers

oh, and on Lego---I didn't realize it, but there's a whole culture of people who make art and super clever functional pieces from lego blocks. Some actually reshape the blocks (grinders? I'm unsure of the term) and others take a more purist approach and work with them as they are. I got the impression the two groups believe the distinction is important. I'd like to have big blocks to make furniture with.

mordicai said...

Naw, it is one of the (sillier/awesome) monsters from DnD's "psionic" bestiary.

K said...

I've been an intermittent spectator of the Lego-art people since about 2002, when I stumbled across this website:

I can't for the life of me think what I can have been looking for, but it probably had something to do with Escher. And the combination of Escher, maths and Lego... hard to beat!

The site hasn't been updated since 2005, I notice, which is a shame.

Anonymous said...

Yay for notebooks! I turned mine into my website:

Can't Backspace

I have just been given a new notebook with really pretty paper. I'm still trying to work out what to do with it. My main notebook is A4 and thick so easy to keep track of.

Carl V. Anderson said...

No need to apologize for working hard on the creative end. That has to be the hardest thing to balance for an artist, I imagine, having to deal with the business end of selling your product--the un-fun things like packaging, etc.