New school year, teaching and grants....

I never mean to let this much time pass between entries, but where did the summer go?  It seems like I spent all summer applying to things, and now I am starting to hear back.  I sent off my proposal to the MAEP program, and after talking with the program administrator, I think I am getting closer.  I've got some adjustments to make for the 10/31 deadline, and I think I am hopeful.  I've been rejected for a Juried Exhibition that looked like a good opportunity, and two academic residencies...and I am still waiting on a lot.  I did have my SEMAC grant proposal accepted for support of new work I intend to exhibit next summer!  $5000!  I am so thrilled.  My friend MaryBeth also got one for $2500!  We both just got our paperwork in and should receive a check on 9/1/17.  I am actually going to get paid to make work....a large piece I posted planning pictures of earlier this summer.  I can't wait.  

acceptance letter grant

And it turns out if you just keep applying to stuff, the rejections start to sting way less.  

I just found out last week that I have a Drawing 1 class at RCTC, so I have been in planning mode for a couple of days.  Luckily, Drawing is one of my favorite things to teach, and I can do it without much trouble, so I am not worried about prep.  

And finally, my son is about two weeks off of his own school starting.  Fifth grade.  He will be walking himself home in the afternoons as I won't be home.  Missing out on the walk makes me a little sad; that was one of my favorite parts of the day.  And about the only time he tells me anything of significance.  I guess I should be getting used to that.  


and dust bunnies and cob webs around these parts.  There was the holiday, which was lovely, and then school prep, which was rushed, and then getting back to school.  I am teaching Drawing 1 and 3-D Design at RCTC this semester, and 2-D Design at Winona State University.  It feels like a lot of classes crammed into four days.  So far, so good, but it is only the second week.  I pulled out my million year old copy of Art Fundamentals as my textbook for 2-D...but I have to admit there is another book I am more excited about and wanted desperately to use as a textbook.  I just couldn't bring myself to do it.  When my husband and I were looking for Christmas gifts for my son and Barnes and Noble, we found it:  The School of Art, by Teal Triggs and illustrated by Daniel Frost.  It is a children's book, but it is brilliant.  There is a Professor of Ideas, of Form, of Senses, of Making and of the Planet.  There is a team on what basic elements we need to make art and one on what design principles help us make art.  The illustrations are whimsical, the book is full of activities, and it makes the academic business of art so much fun.  My husband got it for me.  If you are a maker, check it out, I think you will love it too.  

First day....

of Drawing 1 at RCTC.  26 students.  New easels, tables and supplies. We spent the morning reading the syllabus.... hopefully the big art words didn't scare them off. I have spent many years as the teacher, but I still remember my first drawing class at RISD with Michael Yefko.  He smelled like coffee and cigarettes and wore his hair in a ponytail.  It was a seven hour studio once a week.  It was heaven.  He gave us our supply list at the beginning of class, and sent us to the RISD Store to purchase everything.  We had an hour, and the bookstore was the world's best playground.  I bought tools I knew nothing about and had never used.  We came back up to class, and Michael had set up a still life of pots and bones.  We had a 24x36 inch pad of newsprint, and we started drawing.  I had never drawn that big, and it was the smallest size I drew on all year.  We came back the next week to draw the model....another first for me.  I don't remember much about the model, but I remember making a gesture drawing of the model with compressed charcoal and it was a revelation.  I loved gesture drawings.  Longer drawings found me getting fussy and caught up in particulars while I lost sight of the whole.  Gesture drawings were this wonderful process of discovery every single time.  I still think there is nothing more beautiful than that feather-like mark of compressed charcoal swooping across the page.  I hope I can help my students find what excites them about their own drawing.  Discovering my drawing during that freshman year was one of the best moments of my artistic life.