aqua fortis

Thursday, June 30, 2005

Sportin' a 'Do

So I'm driving to work this morning and I see a guy in a do-rag walking along the sidewalk. At first it looks like your normal do-rag in basic black, but as I cruise past and get a closer glimpse, I'm almost positive that what I'm seeing seems, in fact, to be an elastic do-rag.

An elastic do-rag. This bothers me. It reminds me of those pre-made Saran Wrap container covers with the stretch-to-fit edges. Or a shower cap. I mean, isn't the whole point of the do-rag (besides, possibly, hiding a bad hair day) to make you look cooler via your expert ability to tie a scarf-like object around your head in a particularly tight and tidy fashion? If you're not even really tying it on there, what's the point? It's like the headwear equivalent of a clip-on tie.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005


Busy. All the time. No rest for Sarah. Except for tonight--some enforced rest watching The Royal Tenenbaums is forthcoming.

Now, please excuse me while I go buy an mp3 player (see below).

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Need Audio Help!

The volume control on our aging Sony Discman recently pooped out. It now plays at one volume only--slightly too loud. Therefore, we are finally thinking about jumping into this century in terms of portable audio and buying an mp3 player.

The only restriction is, we'd really like one which we can use to store digital camera photos without having to buy the pricey new iPod Photo. I've noticed that there is a component one can purchase that allows the downloading of photos from a digital camera. Does anybody have experience with such a component? Does anyone have any recommendations with respect to mp3 players which are, preferably, under $200? Any help appreciated. I'm tired of trying to wade through cNET reviews.

To Create or Not To Create...

I am, once again, guilty of failing to blog as often as I would like. Actually, I did do some blogging this weekend, but it was all on my other blogs. I often neglect my Welsh blog, so I posted something there; and both the YA blogs were calling my name. But despite the writing-related blogging, some other creativity-related issues have been nagging at me. Fearing that this line of inquiry would be too much of a downer for the writing blogs, I saved it for aquafortis, which leaves very little territory uncharted. I prefer to post more encouraging things on the writing blogs, like conference musings or book reviews. Benign, happy thoughts.

Anyway, I can't seem to help coming back to a sort of perfectionism issue that I've always struggled with to some degree, both in my visual art and in my writing. I know (firsthand, and not in a good way) how difficult it is to even make a living in a creative career, let alone enjoy more visible forms of success. I see examples of work by successful or no-doubt-soon-to-be-successful writers and artists, and I feel left in the dust. It makes me unbearably depressed about my own work. I decided to take a closer look at this, and I realized that it's because it seems very apparent that in order to succeed in a creative profession you have to be exceptionally good at what you do. The assumption in my head--the thing the evil little voices keep telling me--is that if I can't come up with exceptional work that measures up to or surpasses the successful work I see around me, then I might as well not even bother. It's not worth trying, because my work won't ever be that good. And I'm not satisfied with the idea of my work merely being passable or mediocre.

So I suppose what it comes down to is fear of, and inability to accept, mediocrity. The other thing that's hard for me to accept is that improvement takes time if you're not some kind of prodigy. (To quote Homer Simpson, "30 seconds? But I want it now!") I don't like putting huge amounts of hours into a large project that is ultimately useless because it's "practice." This is a bad thing not to like if you're a creative person. But I am truly, in my soul, appalled at the idea of, say, writing a novel and having it be a "practice novel." Who wants to write a practice novel?

Anyway, I think I'm done ranting about all that now. This was brought on because over the past few days I encountered two examples of creative work--in media I normally enjoy using--done in a far more talented and polished manner than I could ever hope to achieve in a lifetime of practice. This does not bother me when I'm in, like, a museum, or reading my latest choice of library book. But somehow when it encroaches on the everyday world, I am crushed. I contemplate quitting forever and pursuing a more practical career like my dad always told me to.

But then again, who wants to base their life around doing what their parents tell them to?

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Bad Sarah! No Bloggie

Just a quick post--cool article about Miyazaki and his new movie (which I can't wait to see), Howl's Moving Castle.

Sorry, I promise I'll post more one of these days. However, I seem to manage to fill every spare second of my day with non-blogging.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Everybody's Workin' for the Weekend

Name that band! Just kidding. Every time I hear that song now, all I can think of is the SNL skit in which Patrick Swayze and Chris Farley were auditioning to be Chippendales dancers.

Yes, I'm loafing at work. Taking a break. I had a hard day yesterday, so I need frequent breaks today. Yesterday I got up at 6:50 a.m., which I dislike, went to work for 4 hours, had lunch, then went to Rob's class and spent 2 and a half hours stippling on part of my design project (only finishing about half of the stipple portion, which forms 1/4 of the actual image area--you can do the math). Then, I went to the chiropractor, where my back popped remarkably little for having been hunched over tiny ink dots all afternoon; then to the grocery store; then home, where I did a few chores before working on my freelance project for four more hours; then I spent two more hours finishing my stipple drawing before finally giving up and going to bed.

That is many, many hours of work. Too many, if you ask me. And now I'm attempting to come up with a tactful way to translate "you lucky bastard" into business-ese for a form letter. That is some serious creative writing. "We congratulate you on your good fortune....this time." Uh, no.

On the other hand, Rob ran across the Mr. Picasso Head website this morning. It's a nice break from stippling, typing, or whatever you happen to be doing.