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Month: July 2017

Thursday links

  • NPR tweeted the Declaration of Independence. Ignorami and snowflakes were offended.
  • Finding the spiritual meaning in Harry Potter. Um. Okay. I can see Rowling put it in there (return from the dead, guardian figures from the beyond, immortal evil, perseverence against overwhelming darkness, etc.), but … um.
  • Utah. Strange place. But at least the “Zion curtain” between restaurant patrons and bartenders is finally falling. 8 Comments
  • Brandy (aka that black dog I keep mentioning)

    Well, there she is, that black dog I’ve been going on about. Brandy. I’ve wanted to draw or paint a dog resting on colorful cushions. I have photos of Ava and the late, lamented Robbie to work from, but the project always daunted me. Then a friend took me up on a longstanding offer to do a portrait of his dog (in thanks for many favors over the years) and when he sent pix, among all the poses of her standing and sitting and roaming his yard, there was this: Not only complicated cushions, but (ulp!) a black dog. As…


    On black dogs and blacker political reality

    The black dog I finished the black-dog art yesterday. Well, not finished. I’ll be putzing with it for the next week, darkening this color and refining that line. But I got through it. Now it’s just polishing. It was the hardest piece I’ve ever done. Took about as long to do as the icon from last month’s monastery workshop. But the icon was basically a sophisticated version of paint-by-numbers. The black dog was … whew. Flying by seat of pants. Plus I had to get myself out of a couple of self-caused scrapes. Until the last I was on edge:…


    Happy Independence Day

    Enjoy the fireworks, to whatever extent your local government allows. Raise a glass to the spirit of freedom, as long as you don’t get on the wrong side of the law for public intoxication. Celebrate the freest country in the world, while being careful not to say anything that might attract the attention of the NSA, FBI, IRS, CIA, or other surveillance agency whose existence is currently being kept secret. Create some joyful booms and bangs of your own, subject of course to those 20,000+ federal, state, and local laws (which surely you’ve memorized), and the completely scrupulously fair and…


    The joys of goofing off

    I sometimes do nothing useful. I rarely ever goof off. The perils of being self-employed and working at home. With nothing to distinguish on-duty hours from off-duty, work becomes a preoccupation even (and sometimes especially) when I’m not doing it. Thursday I mentioned a project I had been Not Doing but thinking about. A lot. It’s a portrait of a black dog. I don’t know of anything harder to portray than black fur, especially when using an inherently matte and thin medium like colored pencil. Thursday afternoon and Friday, I finally sat down to do it. As so often happens,…