Tuesday, June 19, 2007

I Met Penelope Trunk! And she is the friendliest "antisocial" blogger-turned-book-author you'll ever meet.

Look her up here: http://blog.penelopetrunk.com/

I stumbled upon her blog about two weeks ago. Then, Monday, my friend Jenn pointed out that Penelope was visiting Tampa within a few hours for a book signing.

A number of people have complained about the fact that Penelope, who has ultimately achieved success by offering financial and career-related advice, has herself experienced plenty of difficulty in those very areas on her way up. I think her honesty is refreshing and inspiring, and I love her counter-intuitive (yet well-researched) advice. Just a few of my favorite items from Penelope Trunk:

You can put a number on happiness. It's a $40,000 annual salary.    (?!?!)

Perfectionism is completely at odds with achieving perfection.

Exercise boosts your IQ.

Also, she's funny. For more, you want to visit her website or blog, or buy her book! http://penelopetrunk.com/

What else can I tell you?

Well, I am really loving a new painting I've done in pastel.

This is a portrait of a house, rather than a person, but I feel like this house has all the personality of a human being.

I love how the trees' shadows work their way over everything. It unites every part of the picture.

And the composition pleases me, with its zigzagging lines drawing the eye all over the page. I can't wait to paint more homescapes!

Sunday, June 17, 2007

I know Blue Man Group has been around for years, but I just saw it again recently, and was reminded: this show is brilliant conceptual art. It covers sooo many ideas, and with such an entertaining delivery. People obsess over race, over black, white, yellow, etc, so let's make these people blue. No such thing as blue people? Fine, they can be aliens, or whatever you like, so long as you have no preconceived ideas of what it means to be blue.... So thought-provoking... What is art? What makes a thing valuable? What does it mean to be creative/productive? What does it mean to be a consumer? How are we all connected? Then there's the fascinating element of how people change behavior in the midst of large groups. Mob mentality, but used in a good way, to open minds rather than to close them. All of this, plus it looks and sounds and feels like a party. Actually, it feels like you are five years old, at a phenomenal birthday party.

I saw the show about a week ago in Orlando. I had seen the show before, but was excited to see it again, because this time around I knew one of the performers! Richard Cravens, whom you can find here, is a Blue Man now! It was great to say hello to him at the end and get him to make one of his rare breaks from character to say hello back. He also shook my hand and left me with a blue-paint-y palm. But no worries, I'm familiar with having paint on my hands. :)

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

New Wonderful TV Interview - Channel 10 (CBS) this time! Reporter David Leonard interviewed me. David is a one-man-band, performing the roles of camera-man, lighting manager, director, story-writer, etc, all at once, and I was seriously impressed by his professionalism! The video and story came out yesterday, so here's the link, and you can see for yourself:


I love it!! He even interviewed my mom!! Warm fuzzy feelings :)

And I am just really glad and grateful that David saw a story in me, a story that could potentially interest and inspire other people.

What's the story? I hope you'll check out the news channel's report. In short, I made a rather unconventional leap from a safe, professional path, into the wilds of the great artistic unknown. Lots of time and money were invested into moving me through Duke, the University of Florida, and the Florida Bar. And the idea of disappointing my parents and family... weighed on me, to say the least.
But ultimately, they respected the fact that I could not define financial reward alone as "success," and would not feel real happiness until I at least made a go at following my dreams. I had to prove I had the ability to back up my dreams. And that's where the hard work came in. If this inspires anyone, I am happy.

Come to think of it, David has a job that's similar to mine: telling people's stories. I bet I would enjoy being that sort of reporter! This gives me an idea... I'd love to do a new kind of portrait: one that is not only visual, but includes a written component, a written snapshot of the person's life. A bit of biography. And this could be in the form of paper or CD, which could be stored in a slot that is cut into the frame. Or the words could be written on the back of the frame itself, or on the back of the canvas... Hmmm, food for thought.

Also, I joined the Junior League of Tampa this week. Really looking forward to the next year...

Comic strip: Bill Watterson's "Calvin & Hobbes."