I got some working thoughts in my head today. Or maybe they’re more like thoughts on working. The end of the year is always a hard time to get my own art done. I end up spending a lot of time making things for presents for my family plus there is all the holiday running around. Also with the new year starting there is a lot of “What’s going to happen this year?” stuff going on in everybody’s heads. Including mine. All that adds up to December being a tough month to get things done in terms of my own art. I end up doing a little of this and a little of that and thinking about things in general. Hence the thoughts about my work in my head right now.

The first thought in my head is never throw any of your bad photos away. My whole style of photo making developed from saving all of my photos that weren’t good enough to make it into my photo album and then cutting them into pieces and making a good photo out of the pieces. So back before the days of digital photography I had a box full of photos that I’d go through when I wanted to make a good photo. Now I just never delete my bad photos. They stay in my folder of raw pictures.

I mention this because one of the things I’ve been working on is my Little Red Sketchbook project. I’ve been working on it for a while now. Since 2012. That year I filled a little red sketchbook with drawings in red pen and I want to write something to accompany it and turn the whole thing into a book. I started the writing but have been having a tough time finishing up the whole visual concept. One of the things I ended up doing was using some of my street photos as material for a border around the sketchbook pages. The blurry and out of focus photos seem to work best. That sent me scrambling to find some more bad photos of mine. I found myself actually disappointed that most of my street photos were in focus. How is that for a weird reversal? You never know.

I knocked out another six of my “On the Rough” color drawings one day last week. They are to be my go-to project these days when I can’t concentrate and get anything done. They seem to be able to get me to stop fretting about other stuff and just draw for a little while. It helps that they only take a short time to make. Individually they’re not a long term project but put them all together and they might add up to something more. That’s a good feeling and it seems dependable for now.

Right this moment I remembered I had to count how many pages I have left in my ink-book. I want to get this one finished and start the new one in January and I was right on track last I checked but time has a way of slipping by. Especially when in comes to my ink-book. I fill about eight pages a month in it but often I will draw four pages in the first week or so and then forget for two weeks. I think I’m ahead of things but then time slips by. I now have three pages left in the book and four days left in the month. An easy to meet schedule since each page will take about an hour but where did the month go? That’s December for you.

There are some things I want to get back to. My large black marker drawings for one. It was October or November 2012 that I was making large black marker drawings. They were on 20×30 inch paper. They have a very graphic and stark style. I liked them. I thought they had something special about them. Then something derailed my momentum. I can’t even remember what. Just life I guess but I want to go back and make some more of them. That I’ll make happen.

One more thing I want to get done is some acrylic on canvas painting. Sometime in late 2012 I bought about eight to ten 18×24 inch pre-stretched canvases. I wanted them lying around the place so I could pick one up and start a painting anytime. No excuses. I think it was this past summer when I used the last one and I haven’t made a large painting like that since. I need to buy some more of those canvases. Unfortunately I haven’t been able to find a good deal on them lately. I squirrel away art supplies when I get the extra cash but haven’t been able to do that too much the second half of this year. Oh well, I still have plenty of paper and ink for those large black marker drawings.

On thing I had fun making this Christmas was stickers for my family. Way back in 2011 I bought a Polaroid Pogo printer that made these little stickers. I think the printer failed in the marketplace so I got it cheap. It was a little fun but I never found much use for it. This month I dug it out again and played around with it a bit. I seemed to like the stickers best when I used one of my Photoshop filter recipes to make a photo into a more graphic image. The little two by three inch stickers had more impact that way then as regular photos. That gave me the idea to make some stickers for my mother and sister out of some old family photos. They came out pretty neat. I’m going to have to get some more of that Polaroid Zink sticker paper and make some more stickers.

And that’s it of now. December has officially worn me out. All that running around and hubbub is tiring. It’s time for things to get normal again. Of course routine can wear me down too. But that’s a thought for another day.