Monday, November 6, 2017

Sometimes you just need a little calm in your life

Autumn trees at our cabin-Julie Jacobsen 2017 copyright

While thinking of what I wanted to talk about tonight I thought about all the terrible violence that has happened within the last year in our country.  I really do despise guns and they are playing a starring role in my consternation lately.  Why, oh, why.  That's what I keep asking the space around me.  Why do we have to have something as destructive as guns?  In the hands of the wrong people they can ruin lives and not just the ones that are shot-not even just their direct family and friends-but all of us.  Are we going to have to start worrying about wherever we go?  Lately in my daily prayers I've been including a special one about our grandchildren.  Are they going to be in a place where they can be harmed by one of these maniacs that our society can't control?  Are the adults I love and care about so much going to be in a bad place where evil will strike again.

Is it worth it?  Worth ruining lives just so certain gun owners can have the novelty of shooting round after round in rapid succession?  When is this craziness going to end?  What will it take?  I remember when people were hijacking planes and we all were terrified that it could happen to any of us setting foot on a plane.  And we thought that could be the worst thing?  Not even.

So, today I choose to post a calm painting where we can pull ourselves in among the beauty of calming nature.  Wouldn't it be so lovely if we all could sit at a picnic table in this painting and open up a box of clay.  You know.  The kind that comes in 4 colors.  All we have to think about is whether we're going to make a turtle or a dog.  Or maybe what we're going to have for an afternoon snack afterwards.  I used to love to just take a blanket outside in the backyard when I was little and have my quiet time there.  One time I read an Oz book and had a big hunk of cold iceberg lettuce.  All I did was read about the land of Oz and munch on this crunchy wonder while I smelled the fresh grass, felt a warm breeze, and looked up every once in a while at our hawthorn tree that had little bouquets of pink flowers.  

Now that's what we all need right now.  Calm.  We loved spending a lot of our summer at our hillbilly cabin in the Uintah mountains.  It really is rough and not much to do in the way of city entertainment.  But we loved it so much!  It was so peaceful and we got to see lots of wildlife.  I can't wait for next summer when we can be back there to pause and know that life doesn't have to be scary all the time. 

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

A project that was supposed to be quick - STAIRS at the cabin

So, my project started out as a simple one.  The unfinished stairs at our cabin are almost the same color as the concrete floor and I missed the last step several times and almost killed myself!  I thought I would just paint a simple flower on the bottom step but, of course, I couldn't stop once I got started.  It was too much fun!


Of course I, now, had to do the next step.  I was on a roll!


I decided to paint the rest with the subject matter being what we love at our cabin in the Uintah Mountains in Utah.  So next came a moose because we see them there but it's usually quite rare.  This year we saw quite a few because we spent more time at our cabin than we ever have before.


Shocker's Pond is very close to it and we know that there can be black bears up there.  We actually have never seen one but our friends took a picture of one in front of our cabin when we weren't there and showed it to us.  Horrors!  Besides being eating by a shark-being eaten by a bear is one of my worst fears!  I know the likelihood of seeing one is so slim but I'm going to get some bear spray so I can feel a little better about walking around without someone else all the time.  Talk about a coward!


Trout is another thing that we see quite often.  We used to have albino trout that were planted by the Forest Service every year but they don't do it any more.  They were so beautiful-kind of a peachy color.   So now it's just regular trout.  Chris and I aren't lovers of fishing but Kip and our grandson, Brandon, really do.  Kip used to spend hours fishing happily by himself.  Our other kids feel too sorry for the fish and can't stand to hurt them. 

There are a total of 7 stairs and I have 3 more to go.  The cabin is pretty much closed for the winter now because it's a dirt road and, unless we had a snowmobile, we can't get to it.  They can't plow it.   Plus we don't have a fireplace or a furnace and it's freezing in the winter.  Long story made short-I'll have the rest of the winter and spring to paint the last 3 stairs.  I'll post those when I'm done.  

It's really fun!  By the way-there are layers of finish on top of the paintings to protect all my hard work.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

What started out as one cloud turned into the Cloud Congregation!

"Cloud Congregation" by Julie Jacobsen

One day when I was having a chemo treatment I pulled out my sketch book and decided to play around with my new colored pencils.  I was going to do a little landscape with some cheery fluffy clouds but the cloud aspect got away from me.  Then, as in almost all my sketches nowadays, more and more cloud creatures appeared.  I actually think it's even better than what I had originally planned.  Definitely more interesting.  I've learned to let go and trust my instincts more.  It's like my brain has gone back in time to my creative days in high school and before.  How did I ever lose this drive?  I guess I felt like I had to plan everything out in a drawing, etc.  That's a real creativity squelcher!  I had to become a total adult and had forgotten that art can be just for fun.

It has taken me quitting my job and being in a non stress environment with not much to do to get me to this wonderful point.  I'm still doing planned out paintings but I'm doing all this creative stuff.  It's like my brain has burst and shooting stars are spraying out.  I keep thinking of all sorts of things.  I have even thought of 3D ideas and I have not been interested in that for years and years-except my broken china mosaics.  

Let the party continue (without any more illness.......oh please!!!!!)!!!!!!!

Friday, October 20, 2017

Yay!!! I'm back! Lots of progress!


********I'm starting this blog entry with the caveat that of course all of these images are copyrighted and can not be copied in any way for further use******************************************

Well, it's probably been more than 2 years that I've been working on this but I got a lot done on the Christmas painting.  I was at our cabin for a good deal of the summer and I was determined to paint!  So I did!  I'm still working out the Mary, Joseph, and Jesus vignette and my son, Kip, does not look right but at least the boy's hair isn't green any more.  I'm redoing Aren's face in the Christmas tree ornament because I didn't like it before.  But it's moving along!

I've been doing tons of sketching withing the last year and at times my sketches got pretty bizarre as you can well imagine since it was during my chemo treatments. When I had to take steroids for 3 days after each treatment it was like entering The Twilight Zone!  But I've really let my imagination stretch to almost the outer limits.

I've always been told by my teachers growing up that I should illustrate and I never followed that path but now that inclination is manifesting itself more and more.




I start out with light scribbles (that's why you can see sketchy lines) and as I keep doing it things pop out that I never would have been able to think of by just drawing.



Now, I'm thinking it will be very fun to write a story about each of these and personalize them for my grandchildren's Christmas.



There's plenty of good story material in each one.  I'm not a writer but I might try my hand.  I've been trying to get my son, Kip, to write about these.  He's a gifted writer!



When I look at my beginning sketch books I can't believe how much I've been able to extend my imagination through my pen.



I use a pen because then I can't erase.  Erasing would be a big mistake because a lot of times I come back to these and see more hidden creatures.    How in the world it happens, I have no idea, but I'm glad it does!

To further my recovery from my treatments I've decided I really need to get back to blogging more because it is such a good exercise for the brain and it's a great way to be in touch with the rest of the world.  I have one really fun friend now that I met through clicking on the "next blog" button.  We have so much in common.  So good or bad you're going to hear a lot more from me now!

Monday, March 27, 2017

Everyone "JOIN" Monday is Artday


This is my entry for "Join" and I hope it conveys the message that all artists are welcome and will make this blog a successful platform to display our art.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

My new entry for Monday Art Day!

"The Paint Mines"

Last week's theme for Monday Art Day was "desert".  I chose to do a muted drawing of the Paint Mines in Colorado that I visited years ago.  It's a beautiful place with colors of yellow ochre, pinks, purples, and red contrasted with a chalky white.  I don't know if it's possible to go there now because it was on private land back in the early 1990's.  It's definitely worth a visit.


Thursday, March 2, 2017

More progress on the Christmas painting-Yay!



More work on the Christmas painting. I'm trying to bring each vignette to the same stage. If you look closely at the one with Mary, Joseph, and Jesus in the background you'll see angels. I changed the view of the kitty. Redrew Gracie. She was too big for her age in the photo I'm using. Darkened the Christmas tree scene background. Just noticed a mistake I need to fix!  Ha ha!  So much more to do!!!! It's a very dark painting right now but that will really change.
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