inktober 20

i've been pretty faithful to inktober lately, even though i've not been posting on my fb/blog/insta. 

usually i draw something in ink right before i go to bed. as per inktober's rules, the things i make are always in ink.

but tonight, well...this morning, i'm opting to make something in digital ink...in words. i've forgotten that words and art are almost interchangeable and both necessary for me. 


recently i've worked a lot.
too much.
it comes with a high price of stress
so that today, when i was supposed to have a day off
(but worked 5.5 hours anyway),
i almost felt guilty for leaving to have fun.

and i recognized that as unhealthy.

so i specifically made sure i carried out all my "fun" plans today,
as more of a mental health requisite than a reckless day off.


it was a day of many outfits, including --

houndstooth tunic and black jeans,
a leather riding jacket with armor included,
double sweater combo with a leather jacket from mexico and boots
shiny skirt, and a mask from venice (and hair piece from mexico)

and a day of many activities, including --

a walk to sodalicious with coworkers to celebrate two deadlines accomplished
a journey up the canyon on one of my favorite modes of transportation
a trip into a corn field to wander around for an hour
a balloon-infested, cheesecake celebration: masquerade style

and some thoughts.
including --

there's something important about bonding over the small things. even if it is soda.
those mountains have secrets within their crevices. there are hidden views and secret vistas. some only visible for a split second when one or two are speeding by...and only if one is looking for them
fun can be made anywhere. also, even if you can't seem to find the end of a maze, at least you're building endurance and patience. maybe the end isn't as important as we think it is.
and that mask.

i miss the real one back in venice,
and that time my brother and i chased it.



playing with blocks again

it's been a long time since i've stood,
Girl Against Mountain.

it's been a long time since i've explored new roads
but only in a very literal way.

it's been a long time since i've written
well, like this.

it all feels new and vulnerable.
yet very familiar.

so tonight,
i wrote like this.

drove til successfully lost. hit a dead end, turned around,
was chagrined to stumble onto a familiar street (it meant i'd been here before)

and stood against the mountain.
and though the wind didn't threaten to push me over, the rain came.

9.30.14 // 


before it grows too late

the following: a facebook status i posted that i need to remember. with a few extras because this is my little corner. 

here’s a healthy dose of vulnerability and some truth.

i went to the relief society #womensmeeting preoccupied and anxiety-filled. not wanting to talk with anyone, i sat in the corner hoping not to be noticed. because of my stubborn and introverted mindset, i was a lot more focused on what was happening. i listened and felt. and as i sat there, it was like my cup drained of its worries and filled with hope and direction. my cheeks were completely wet and i was vaguely grateful i decided against makeup today. i still have all the same problems, but somehow things are manageable. i don’t know how that works, but i just know it does. with God, all things are possible.

we don’t earn His love; we couldn’t even if we tried. but it is there, just waiting for us to recognize it. and when we do, my…it’s a powerful feeling. i am important. you are important. we each have a work to do and it is important to God that we are successful. our victories are important to him, no matter how small they may be.

please, please—no matter who you are: make it a priority to watch LDS general conference this coming weekend. we have a good long week to prepare. he’s just waiting to give us what we need to hear, as long as we’re seeking for it with an open heart. i just want everyone to experience what i did tonight, because it felt so good. so personal.

“lead me, guide me, walk beside me…
help me find the way."


let the evening go

i was looking through old pictures a few nights ago. 

2007 //

~ 3.26.2008 //

11.22.08 // 
[honorable mention]

8.26.10 //

7.1.11 //

 11.11 //

9.11.13 // 5.22.14 // 6.8.14

9.17.14 // (etc, tbd)



i'm in a weird mood. 

and honestly, it's lasted for longer than a night or two. 
i think i'm just in a weird spot in life. 

sometimes i just feel sad about certain things. 
but these things are hard to put my finger on, hard to fix. 
and so, hard to feel. 
but when i do feel it, it's a specific and peculiar sort of Sad.

so then it's the battle of letting myself feel (somewhat irrationally, which annoys my logic) or becoming numb. 
usually vacillating between the two. 

enough of that vulnerability for now.  


today is september 11. 

i got up at 5:20 to go running with a friend. 
who knew that hour still even existed?! 

anyway. it does. 
that, with its accompanying happy little circumstances, started my day off well. 

slowly, my body started to rebel and my latent knee injury awoke and reared it's angry, groggy head. and then my head felt like it was a good day to get a migraine, probably because it's most wonderfully inconvenient when i have a pretty intense deadline (which i miraculously hit today). 

this isn't supposed to be a log of my daily events. 

point is, i ended up more subdued than i was this morning. 
still in a good mood, just physically not feeling great. 

now i'm just sitting here (i cancelled my plans tonight due to said migraine), 
and i decided i'd like a new cover photo for facebook. 

i started looking through my italy pictures...
then through my mexico pictures. 

with a spotify playlist on shuffle, 
music gently filled my head as i perused. 
it had been a while since i've looked through either of these sets of photos.
and slowly, i started to feel the Sad creep in. 

it's not necessarily a depressed sort of sad. 
it's just a sad sort of Sad. 
it could definitely lead to the depressed sort of ad, but innately, it's just its own Sad. 
a more flavorful sort of melancholy maybe? 
a respectful slow ache aching for the past. 

and i thought again of september 11.

i saw the hashtag trending today, #neverforget. 

i think that's really powerful. 

september 11 was and is incredibly important to me. 

but i also realized that sometimes we only intentionally take time to remember the more obvious events in history, and we usually wait for holidays to remind us. 

looking through these photos, it just hit me that it's necessary, sometimes vital--to reflect and remember the really September Elevens of our personal lives. and also to remember our own Independence Days. our deepest heartbreaks and our greatest victories, because they're part of the same experience. 

it's easier to remember the good things, but sometimes we don't intentionally reflect on them. i think maybe i should, more. and then also the times that have been really hard. and by hard, i mean Hard. it's really important to understand where our growth has come from, and also where our calluses and scars lay, so we're at least aware of them and can start to help them heal if they/we need to. 

last night i went to a meditation class and our teacher just had us sit there for 30 minutes, just breathing in silence, observing our thoughts at a distance. we really had to just sit and face ourselves. it was...hard.  

as we remember our personal gethsemenes and our greatest victories, we more fully realize who we are and where we came from. and hopefully that can steer us into where we're going. the past is a part of us and always will be, though it doesn't have to define the future. 

i'm not trying to say live in the past, but out of respect for what these experiences have done for us and how they've shaped us -- those lessons we must #neverforget. 


empty rooms with dense air

so looks like i word vomited. 
like....five times. 
last month, on this blog.
that's pretty good, right? 


right now i'm listening to my own voice croon songs (really, bits of songs) i've "written" --made up in the car and recorded-- and it's sort of soothing rather than insecurity-filling, which it has been in the past.

and some of these songs? from a few months ago? they are heart-breaking.
it almost makes me want to cry.
and there are journal entries mixed in.
i am letting them play as well.
and also writing down the lyrics of the songs.

and surprisingly, i really like some of the songs.
a lot more than i thought.

i want to do something with them.
but i also want to keep them a secret.
they *are* my journal entries.
sort of like this blog.

but like this blog, they are my secrets that i feel the need to share.


this outfit worked

a continuation from the last....

tonight, on the other hand,
i felt so very alive.

it started out with a really good night drive to a music night, 
and discovered so many friends there that i just really like a whole bunch. 

and it ended with a dance after-party. 
a really, really good dance after-party. 

and i felt so very much myself, 
dancing with those people down in that happy basement. 

i have no idea what i looked like, 
(in fact, i feel i may have looked ridiculous at times 
and potentially physically terrible by the end) 
but that's what fit me best tonight.

and i wouldn't have worn anything different.


fitting & blowing

ah, a morning post. these don't often occur....

it took me an extra long time to get ready this morning.
see, fridays are a little different for my schedule.
and on this particular day, i am going to go to work, work on things, work on freelance things, head to my mentorship, and maybe do a really great art project (film/photography) tonight in a really cool location.

so naturally, my mind is already skipping over the first four things and it's in that art project;
it's at that location.
which is completely dissonant with the sunny day that seems to be unfolding outside.
the location, the thoughts, the concept, the look and feel--are all more pensive.
not depressed, but contemplative.

and because of that, nothing fit today as i was hurriedly putting on an outfit.
not because my clothes didn't physically fit.
but nothing fit how i was feeling.
and my hair, too.
i couldn't really do it in a way that reflected how i want it to be.
i don't really know how i want it to be.

and then i was like,
oh man.
i'm turning into THAT kind of artist.

but at the same time,
i knew i'm not that incredibly finicky,
so i tried to get to the root of it.

i had a good phone conversation with my sister last night.
one of those heart-to-hearts,
a cleansing, tearful, grateful conversation.
i think it opened a lot of things up in me.
possibilities that i had shut out were open again
and fears i had held up in front of me were torn down.

so this morning, i just really couldn't get over my outfit dilemma for a solid few minutes:
why didn't anything feel right today?
why didn't any of the clothes i wear...make sense?
then i had a subtle uncomfortable realization:
perhaps i don't feel comfortable in my own skin.
a little bit.

and no outfit in my closet will fix that.

so i just realized that i'm really antsy with some aspects of my life.
i feel like the winds of change are coming.
or they want to come, but are sort of suspended on their course, in mid-air,
waiting for me to beckon them in.

so if they aren't coming,
perhaps i'll blow my own wind and make them come.



my brain is usually buzzing with thoughts.
but tonight, i'm just sitting on my porch.

the thoughts are definitely there, but the faucet is turned off.
and i don't think i really want to turn it on.

just wanted to stop in and say hi, because i have started to make this space mine again.
i like that feeling.

i also wanted an excuse to stay on my porch a bit longer
and feel the breeze--much stronger tonight--tousle my hair and play with my clothes.

i like feeling my strength against it,
(even if my strength is nothing more than simply being a solid mass doing nothing other than sitting)
just to test it.


feel the cold rush over me again

preoccupied, i drove home tonight.
it had been a good night, but left alone with my thoughts,
my mind reverted back into troubling situations and unanswered questions.

my window was down and my left arm was characteristically hanging out the window;
a favorite local band was humming through my speakers.
i was on auto-pilot; i hardly noticed as i maneuvered the stoplights on the near-empty streets.

about halfway home, i noticed the breeze.
it was creeping over my left forearm, soft and warm as it danced across my arm into the car.
and then in noticed the song playing from the cd.
i loved this song.

then i realized that i wasn't fully appreciating the amazingly warm air this night had to offer:
it had tried, but i had pushed it aside. i specifically noticed it now, and it felt amazing.
i even opened the sunroof and let more in.
gosh, i love feeling warm summer nights.

that's when i realized: these are all things i enjoy.
things i really enjoy.

night driving. summer nights. warm breeze. this song. singing.

...singing. i wasn't doing that, but i could.
i turned up the music and i remedied that.
and i sang loudly. from my soul, it seemed.

and i wondered how many perfect moments like that slip by without me noticing.
so i passed my street and took a long way home.
almost to apologize to a few of those moments,
and perhaps to make something up to them in some small way in promising to notice more of them.
starting now.



it's been so long since i've written consistently here.

i want to reclaim it.

i feel like i've scattered my thoughts across the minds of others recently.
i'm guessing you could bet: i'm a very open person.
but in some ways it's terrifying.

i still need this space,
to gather my thoughts like cards--
scoop them all up and deal them out
just to see what hand i have.

(which is funny because i rarely play card games)

but it's true because when you're dealt cards, you know you have cards. you see them physically in your hands. they're tangible. but only when you really turn your cards over do you see what's revealed.

thoughts can be thick and at times almost palpable.
and recently i've had a good amount of them.

but instead of writing,
i've dealt them to others.

and not just one person
and actually, not just a few trusted best friends.

recently, i've been talking with new friends as well.
new people i've let into my life,
and given some of my most favorite thoughts,
my cards.

i hope they hold them close.


i guess that's another aspect of vulnerability i'm discovering.

in vulnerability you open up, yes.
but being vulnerable here on my blog, at least i can sign my name to it.
i can go back and reference anything i've written or released.
i can even delete if i want to
(which i don't think i've really ever done, but it's a safety blanket knowing i can).

in conversations, i can't.
in conversations, it's out in the open air, never to be reclaimed
unless i later intentionally reclaim it.

but then again, i don't even remember all that i've released to someone else's ears...

it's a tricky thing, connecting with people.

but then again, that's the whole point.
so i guess i'm okay, having spoken
and not written
for so long.

but still,
i miss this space.

and i am going to reclaim it,
for me, really.


plan b

sometimes life gets a little tricky.
so you plan to secretly take a little weekend trip.
just to run away for a minute to breathe.
then you realize that your niece has a dance recital that weekend.

so you go to that instead,
which is completely worth it.

but as you watch her,
(realizing that at one point she was a cute little girl dancer
and has since matured into a mature, beautiful, incredible dancer)
you ache for that dancer inside of you who never got recognized.
that one that was always there but never quite got her chance.

so later that night, after not having an outlet for so long,
you realize you probably danced when you were 2.
and again, probably, when you were 6.
and times between when you were 6 and now,
so then you think, why not when you are 26?

so then you don your old, worn jazz shoes,
and pretend that your toe isn't broken for a second,
or that your leg injuries aren't there for a minute.
and you turn the lights low
and you just dance.
probably to something like this.

cuz it just feels right.
you know?
i mean, hypothetically of course.


one sticker, please

my head is so achey and i don't know how i will conquer tomorrow.
then again, i didn't know how i was gonna conquer today,
but it happened.
so there.


in my basement

i have been dragging my feet on grading these midterms because i despise grading.
it's taken me pulling my own teeth to get me down to this basement. 

but now that i'm here, i'm just like, waaaaait a minute. 

i do you know what i love? 
i love figure drawing. 

and do you know what else i love? 

and do you know what else i love? 

i get to teach figure drawing to people. 

i get to inspire others and show them how to do one of the most difficult and complicated and foundational processes of art -- and i get to be the one to believe in them. i get to be the one to say, hey. you can do this. and here's how. and that's pretty freaking rad.

so you know what? i'm happy to be in my basement.



just when i think i have it all together,
i sorta lose it again. 

these next/last few days (weeks? months? time eludes me...) have been really crazy. 
and then i wonder, has there been a time in my life i haven't claimed that?
and under my jaunty smile, 
i frown a little. 
is that okay? 

i don't know. 

i was thinking about it just now as i'm late to sit in on another professor's figure drawing class
(have i told this blog that i'm teaching figure drawing this semester at my old university?)
and i was like...wow. i need to switch roles a lot faster these days. 
well, switch mindsets. 

yesterday i needed to be a full-time daughter. that isn't required often of my gracious mother but yesterday it needed to happen. and i'm grateful things are okay.
but today i'm a little stressed about beginning the anatomy unit in my figure drawing class. and my students' midterms are today. so today: full-time instructor. focus on that all day. til after class when i have another commitment. 
and then tomorrow, full-time instructor as i figure out how i'm going to teach the provo art club head drawing. 
and grade my students' midterms. 
and tomorrow night, i'll be a recipient of someone else's art. a concert attendee. hopefully. and hopefully that'll fill my well a bit....and won't leave me too sad. 

the next day? art instructor again. to teach the art club. 
and after that: photographer. photoshoot. stoked about that. but a tad rusty. hoping that the photoshoot i did a few weeks ago will energize that. 
and after that: another social commitment. 

and then monday: work on graphic design project. in fact, all week: toggle between roles of graphic designer for two graphic design projects and figure drawing instructor for again--hardest subject to simplify: anatomy. 

all of this, tring to clear my schedule so that i can be an "artist" -- the painting and drawing kind, since i have the privilege of being in the beehive bazaar and 75% of my stock needs to be original artwork ready to sell. most of which i have yet to  create. 

and um...i have carpal tunnel and tendinitis in both wrists. so i have to make sure i don't overdo it. 

and i'd really like to do music again. that's pulling at me. there's an opportunity to perform a little thing on march 21 (the same day i substitute teach a 6-hour long figure drawing class). 
also there are social things i flit between too. 
you know. 
that's normal, right? 

i'm feeling very incapable of being normal sometimes. 
and simplicity.
such a beautiful concept that somehow always eludes me.

{via here}

...artist: amiright?

maybe i can simplify my artistic life at least. 
if not in the jobs, 
the job descriptions? 

so it's sort of like i switch between things, especially in the artistic sense so fast: artist/art instructor/different kind of art instructor/graphic designer/photographer/back to designer.....and i'm just thinking: perhaps i need to just start to consider myself as a "creator". with different mediums. would that simplify the thought process? 

lemme try.....

hey. i'm kristin.
i create things. 

some days with charcoal, some days with nupastel, others with paint....

yeah. that sounds good. 

so this week, up on the dock, starting today it goes like this:

i    w i l l    c r e a t e    w i t h :

thursday-- food (breakfast), written words (this post), conte (practice), the copy machine (lessonplan),  energy / spoken words / conte (my classroom)

friday-- conte (practice), creativity (lesson plan)

saturday-- spoken words / conte, colored pencils, (art club lesson), camera (photoshoot) 

monday-- lightroom (photo editing), adobe suite (junta project), adobe suite (bom zine project), etc etc....

see, even that is way more complicated than it needs to be. and this post went on a free ramble way longer than i originally intended. and i'm not even gonna go back up and read it before i publish. bad idea? probably. but hey, at least it's something. 

take that, perfectionism. 
simplicity...i'll get back to you later.



today was a self-date day. had a really good experience. then i headed up to the sprague branch library; this is the last week of my art show. i hadn't been there to see my art since my opening reception at the beginning of january. i arrived at the room as a meeting was getting out, and i quietly observed as a few people looked at my art. then i followed suit. it's been a while since i've really studied those pieces. the following experience happened and this is how i recorded it in my journal app on my phone--

just checked on my art. it was a weird feeling this time for some reason. like a parent checking on a kid in his college dorm or something.

i picked up the comment book and decided to only read one comment
(i'd read the rest when my show came down)--
it was a pretty negative one.
not terrible...but sort of negative.
so i put the book down. perplexed. it stung a bit.

then i picked it back up again and wrote a note to myself in there.
so i kept my rule, then i added more.

because today, i attempted to look at my art, as best as i could, from the eyes of someone who didn't create it. i figured i was entitled to write my opinion in there, too, even if it was the result of being slightly bruised from someone else's.

sometimes it's nice to make your own rules.


little un-valentines

dear headache: frankly, you were not the valentine i wanted to wake up to this morning. but that was cute of you to try.

dear motivation to get stuff done: you stood me up, man. were you today?

dear good intentions: thanks for being there--so many of you vying for my attention--though perhaps next time you and motivation could have a little chitchat so we could make something happen.

dear teen girl squad valentimes episode: i will always love you.

dear valentine cards: maybe i'll make you tomorrow. .. . ..but maybe not. i promise--it's me, not you.

dear valentine's day: usually i try to make you into something awesome and personal -- about loving people in general, regardless of whether or not i have a "valentine". well. there is a first time for everything and this year just wasn't our year. i sang a bunch and warmed my fingers up to those steel strings again but didn't really put smiles on the faces of anyone like i wanted to. my night was headed downhill--but i will have you know, i gussied myself up anyways, took a picture to prove it, marched to the grocery store, bought two ingredients and marched myself right back home again, probably passing most the social gatherings i was planning on attending. some years you just don't feel it. luckily, you're an annual sortofa holiday.

dear desiderata: you were the perfect read to end my wearisome night. you'll probably get your own post later for that.

believe it or not, this photo actually underwent fairly little editing. it was a great night for moodily lit self-portraits.


on holding mugs

i was just reading the scriptures while sipping some warm citrus water. i realized that because i'm cold, i was subconsciously clutching my oversized mug up to my chest in between sips so that it would help me stay warm. problem was, the more i drank, the less warm the mug got.

i remember this problem in mexico as well, as we were so cold all the time in our apartment and our best hope of heat at times was the warm drinks we would make. the key to warm drinks was to always keep the mug full because the mug didn't hold any inherent heat. it would only contain the heat brought on by the liquid inside. so the key was to both hold it close as well as drink it so that it our skin would be warm and so would our insides...but to always refill the mug. because if we didn't refill the mug, it was soon be empty and we would be holding something neither hot nor cold. it would do is no good without the warmth inside. however, if we held on for it too long without drinking it, it would become cold anyway.


you can't hold on to potential; you must do something about it. 

likewise, you always have to be refilling your [creative/spiritual/personal] container with new things for it to be most effective. water was good; warm water was helpful.


in 2013 i took my resolutions from luke 2:52

to be honest, some years i've been better about working to achieve my resolutions, and this was not one of them. a lot of unexpected things happened but a surprising amount of progress was made on these original resolutions. i think it's just because i wrote them down. so that's cool.