Drawing Myself

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August 29, Joy Murray

People often ask what’s wrong with me, or more rudely, “What happened to you?!?”  I try to give as short of an answer as possible because my story is complex and I know most people don’t want to hear all that.  “I have a degenerative disorder,” is my standard answer.

But terms and words jangle around people, and I caught myself wondering about these things, how to describe myself and others with dignity — you know short of just calling them by their name.  I usually don’t ask about a person’s physical make-up, unless I see someone in a cast or with stitches that weren’t there before.  And I know them and care for them.

Anyway, I had to go three places yesterday where using a wheelchair wasn’t an option.  I wonder sometimes when I’m in a wheelchair permanently, how I’ll get places.  I’m working on it, checking out medical transport and the Memphis PLUS bus.  But for now, I can still hobble a bit.  So sometimes I do — but only when others are with me, in case I fall and can’t get back up.

When I got settled and rested, I drew myself with a handy cap.

It cheered me considerably.

~~

Thanks for reading my post.  If you like it share it.  If you find a typo, please let me know and I’ll send you a thank-you postcard.  

You can get prints and cards of some of my work on Redbubble.  They also print my work on lots of other items, including phone skins, tote bags, shirts and journals:

https://www.redbubble.com/people/JoyMurray?asc=u

If you’d like to support my art and writing, please consider becoming a donor on Patreon.  If I get enough supporters, I can make this blog ad-free!  Here’s a link to my Patreon page:

https://www.patreon.com/user?u=8001665

If you prefer to make a one time donation, you can do so at paypal.com  Please email me at joyzmailbox@gmail.com if you’d like details.

Dog Days Drawings

Yesterday, I thought about how the nights are getting shorter, which is why my moonflowers are blooming.  But it’s still summer — hot days, but pleasant evenings, made more so by the blooming that continues around me.

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Moonflower, Moon, and Sirius, the dog star of summer’s heat

Today, while I had my morning coffee on the porch, I watched the crepe myrtle across the street release its blossoms, warm pink snow.  Soon it’ll lose all its flowers and its summer work will be done.  I sketched it quickly with watercolor pencils then released the lines with a water brush.

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I’m not sure I’m happy with the way the watercolor pencils worked.  I may try again with watercolors or acrylic.

I’ve seen golden leaves here and there, but we have at least a month of hot weather and sweet sultry mornings and flowers and vibrant nature.  I hope you are enjoying these last days of August, in spite of all that may be distracting us from the thread of beauty that weaves together life.

~~

Thanks for reading my post.  If you like it share it.  If you find a typo, please let me know and I’ll send you a thank-you postcard.  

You can get prints and cards of some of my work on Redbubble.  They also print my work on lots of other items, including phone skins, tote bags, shirts and journals:

https://www.redbubble.com/people/JoyMurray?asc=u

If you’d like to support my art and writing, please consider becoming a donor on Patreon.  If I get enough supporters, I can make this blog ad-free!  Here’s a link to my Patreon page:

https://www.patreon.com/user?u=8001665

If you prefer to make a one time donation, you can do so at paypal.com  Please email me at joyzmailbox@gmail.com if you’d like details.

Drawing, painting, planning

Some of the visual journal pieces I do, I do in an hour or so.  Some, though, take days or weeks.  It depends on how the idea develops.  Sometimes, I need to sketch something quick and jot down a thought I may paint later.

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Elephant ears in pall point pen

Other times I have a story to tell.

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And sometimes, what I think is going to be a sketch becomes a study for a larger painting.   This one I’ve started over a month ago, after the children were separated  from their families as the Mexican border.  The next day, by chance, in the lobby of the Crosstown concourse, there was a photography exhibit put on by World Refugee Memphis, showing successful integration of refugee families into American culture.  I began a sketch, then left it alone, then inked it in, then left it alone.  Today I painted it.

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Refugee girl, ink and watercolor

I may use it later in my Saints Among Us series:

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St Foster Keeper of Stolen Wisdom
remember the future
Remember the Future
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Holding Space

Because I keep the visual journal, I don’t lose ideas.  It may take months to get around to finishing them, but art can be a slow process.  The journals though fill up quickly, and that gives me a sense of accomplishment if I get mired in depression.  It also greatly improves my chance of having a successful painting later.  It helps me practice, find new ways of using color, and it helps me remember so much I’d otherwise lose sight of.

~~

Thanks for reading my post.  If you like it share it.  If you find a typo, please let me know and I’ll send you a thank-you postcard.  

You can get prints and cards of some of my work on Redbubble.  They also print my work on lots of other items, including phone skins, tote bags, shirts and journals:

https://www.redbubble.com/people/JoyMurray?asc=u

If you’d like to support my art and writing, please consider becoming a donor on Patreon.  If I get enough supporters, I can make this blog ad-free!  Here’s a link to my Patreon page:

https://www.patreon.com/user?u=8001665

If you prefer to make a one time donation, you can do so at paypal.com  Please email me at joyzmailbox@gmail.com if you’d like details.

 

 

Visual Journal: Hat Fun

It’s full on summer here in Memphis — sunny days and days in the 90s.  A dear friend took me to get a summer hat, to protect my neck and face from burning and also from frying my brain while I waited on buses or took excursions around the neighborhood.  I was dressed in red and I found a wonderful hat with a wide brim that was red and white.

I planned to do a simple ink and wash self-portrait with my Uniball Vision Elite pen with a lovely brownish red ink, but it turned out to be waterproof.

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So I got out my Acryla gouache red, white and blue, and did a limited palette portrait.  I have become quite attached to Acryla gouache.  It can behave like watercolor when thinned down, but because it’s acrylic, the layers stay put and I don’t muddy up colors.

So the result is this Hat Fun in the Summer Time selfie:

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Hat fun in the summer time by Joy Murray

Bring it on summer, I’ve got a hat big enough for that.

~~~

Thanks for reading my post.  If you like it share it.  

You can get prints and cards of some of my work on Redbubble.  They also print my work on lots of other items, including phone skins, tote bags, shirts and journals:

https://www.redbubble.com/people/JoyMurray?asc=u

If you’d like to support my art and writing, please consider becoming a donor on Patreon.  If I get enough supporters, I can make this blog ad-free!  Here’s a link to my Patreon page:

https://www.patreon.com/user?u=8001665

If you prefer to make a one time donation, you can do so at paypal.com  Please email me at joyzmailbox@gmail.com if you’d like details.