Monday, April 28, 2014

The Way It Was

A Grape Outfit

______My lady balls were more massive than ever when I took a chance on liking a guy. Liking a guy who wasn't a fictional character or one of my hottie biscotti teachers was personally one of the gutsiest decisions I've made, one of the farthest steps I could have taken from my comfy, comfy comfort zone. I liked this guy because his personality seemed genuine, he was humorous, he had artsy inclinations, and, well, he kind of seemed like a dork. I wasn't even physically attracted to him. I was drawn to the inside and thought it was astounding that a person could be so distinct and so persistent on touching base with me every day.

______But after the Pokemon kiss, his text messages became sparser and less energetic. No more "good morning! / good night!" notes accompanied by a plethora of cutesy emojis. No more spontaneous selfies and cringe-worthy puns. Just words and the occasional observation. I knew it was nearing the end of the semester and that he and many others were stressed and occupied with college work, and I understood that notion and ignored the lack of phone activity for a while, occupying my time with springy bike rides and painting. But on the inside, something didn't feel right. Something was very left.

A Grape OutfitA Grape Outfit
A Grape Outfit

______I encountered him two weeks later in the painting studio. He was speaking to another person so I momentarily tucked my lady balls away and remained non-intrusive. He noticed me and glanced up to say hello, and I greeted him casually as I prepared my painting space. I slid my current project onto an easel, scrapped together a shade of intense turquoise, and began smothering it on the paper before me. A few tense minutes later, he straightened up in preparation to leave, but before he passed through those doors to vanish for an indeterminate amount of time...

______Go go gadget: lady balls! I flicked my paintbrush into its jar, bristle side up, and shimmied on up to him. "Can I ask you something?" I said in the most normal tone I could manage. I did not want to make things weird. I just wanted to know where we stood. Is that okay? I feel like that's reasonable.

______He paused in his footsteps and his eyes locked with mine. I hesitated. All right, come on, let's get this over with. Be strong, child. Be a khaleesi. Blood of the dragon. 

______"I don't want to be weird about this, but are we... is there something going on between us relationship-wise? Whichever way it goes, I'm fine with the answer, but I'd just like a clear one." I think I said that. It was probably more choppy than that. More choppy and elucidated with much less grace, like a hastily hashed up Subway salad.

______He straightened his neck. "I... don't think so," he replied. Oh. Man. Crud. Ali, what have you dooooone.

______I half-smiled. I told him thanks for letting me know and that's what I thought, too. There were some other words exchanged, but they were mushed together like soggy alphabet cereal and essentially reconciliations of the above. He said if I wanted to talk about it we could, but he also had class soon so I told him nah, thanks again, and he exited the building. I don't know why I thanked him. I was relieved that I knew the truth, I suppose. Relieved that I welded myself a set of iron guts for this specific quest.

______Yay, guts. Sigh and ugh.

A Grape Outfit
A Grape OutfitA Grape Outfit

______I believe a kiss is special thing and I still do. I understand that not all people think the same thing and are more... charitable with them. Perhaps since it was my first one, I stuck it on a golden chariot and cherished it for too long. I'm sure he's kissed a few girls, maybe more than that, and perhaps I was simply a person who ended up not working out. I know it's about to be summer, too. I don't want to play blame games or wallow in self-pity but I was severely throw off by the notion that he wouldn't have just said something. We're adults here. Right? Adults can converse about these things. It's all right to talk plainly about such things and doesn't mean you're being obsessive or needy; it's just making things concrete and clear. I think it shows a lot of maturity.

______I guess on mostly caught up in the sudden drop of contact: it would be much less cryptic to just tell someone things didn't feel right, yeah? It's perplexing how something that seemed so precious can puddle into a gray mass of questions and re-analyzations so quickly. I don't feel a great sadness. I'm not hurt. There was just a lack of communication, which was more disappointing than being straight-up and hearing that no, there wasn't a spark, and no, things probably wouldn't work out. The fact that I had to decipher a few conversations over two weeks and ask him myself wrecked more havoc on my mind than it should have. He was the one who sparked the first conversation, initially asked for my number, and first touched my hand, yet he was the one to wiggle away from it all. And all I really would have liked was an explanation, a why behind the uncertainty.

______I digress. At least now I'll have more time for cultivating a herb garden and seizing small tropical islands. We're back to our regularly schedule programming, folks!

A Grape Outfit

Blazer: JC Penny (similar)
Maxi dress: Kohl's (similar)
Sandals: Franco Sarto (similar)
Anchor belt: via Lotus Boutique
Necklace: Charming Charlie

Monday, April 21, 2014

BFA Juried Exhibition 2014

Microchroma
Microchroma, Fall 2013
Chalk pastel on paper

______As a Bachlor of Fine Arts major, I have the opportunity to enter my work into a juried competition among other BFAs for being displayed in an off-campus gallery for a few weeks. I was pleased as a pokey pineapple to discover that two of my pieces ended up being selected! Both are installation floor pieces that were done last semester for a Drawing Concepts class. I had to set them up one early morning alongside faculty and other BFA majors as we all figured out the proper placements for the works; I believe a true gallery environment with hardwood floors and controlled lighting really makes the work pop compared to a classroom setting, so I was sure to snap a ton of pictures, which is why you all haven't seen these before!

______The first piece I'll show you is a floor piece comprised of a multitude of pieces that I hand cut from thick Bristol paper. I then made drawings that were cellular or body-like in nature using chalk pastel on those pieces. As you move from the outer pieces to the center, the image "zooms in" on the one above it, thus rendering it more abstract. It was very time-consuming, but working with a buttload of smaller pieces instead of one large entity made it more adventurous and bearable. I feel this piece opened a whole new world for me; I'm hoping to push similar ideas further in my coming years.

MicrochromaMicrochromaMicrochromaMicrochroma

______My next piece was lucky enough to claim the famed "glass floor" on the second floor of the gallery. I was delighted it fit so perfectly there--I was afraid I would have to leave some strips out or have an uneven placement of them, but everything fit snug as a tiny cactus in a tiny cactus holder. For this one, I snipped a (clean!) white bed sheet into squares, stacked the squares in groupings of ten, inked minimalistic drawings on the top square, and used alcohol to bleed its memory through the layers.

______It was entertaining observing people get so close to both of my works to point and try to figure out what was going on. As I was taking pictures, one guy asked, "Is this yours?" and I nodded yes and he said, "It took me a while to realize what was happening. And then I grasped it and had an 'aha!' moment." He told me it was neat how even very similar marks ended up producing different results, and he and many others told me which their favorite "row" was, which was delightful to me!

Wash Out, Quiet SquaresWash Out, Quiet SquaresWash Out, Quiet SquaresWash Out, Quiet SquaresBFA Juried Exhibition 2014
Wash Out, Quiet Squares, Fall 2013
Ink, alcohol, fabric, glass

______The event itself couldn't have gone smoother--I was sure to make myself as frilly as possible, donning a confectionary, twirl-worthy dress and my geek-chic Triforce earrings. There was a full gallery of people: fellow art students, faculty, and family members made up a hearty chunk of the attendees, but there were many others beside that. I also spoke to a few polite strangers about my own art on display and I really think it helped my own confidence--it's flooring (ha) to see that people are interested in what you're making and how you're thinking!

______(sighs deeply) Yep, I'm gonna miss all my senior art friends who are graduating in just two weeks. Two weeks! What even happened to the semester?


BFA Juried Exhibition 2014BFA Juried Exhibition 2014BFA Juried Exhibition 2014BFA Juried Exhibition 2014BFA Juried Exhibition 2014BFA Juried Exhibition 2014
(first group photo above taken by Greg Randall)

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Come Sail Away + LoopsWay

LoopswayLoopswayLoopswayLoopsway
Loopsway

______I'll keep this post short since my last two posts were practically-basically-sorrynotsorry novels. I've probably exhausted your reading meters, so I'll give you guys a week or two to refill them. I'm quite relieved you all are spiz-spazzin' out with me--it's fun reading all the little stories you guys have to share, too, and I solemnly swear I will keep you updated. It's a strange thing, this liking a dude thing is, but we'll see how it goes.

______Any who, onto LoopsWay: they're an online jewelry boutique that offers a snazzy range of shiny accessories to sport on your big, bad self, from necklaces to bracelets to earrings. They sent me over this dainty gold rudder necklace and I believe it's the perfect size--not to big, not too small, but noticeable enough so that your friends and neighbors will know you're a fearsome sea pirate and water wrangler. Plus, it came in the mail in under a week and their staff was very kind and quick to reply to my e-mails. Excellent customer service combined with speedy shipping on a cute item is a triple win in my book!

Loopsway
LoopswayLoopsway

______You can find more of their darling necklaces here, and if you spend over $35, you can earn free shipping. Ch-check 'em out!

______Stay sane this week, friends!

Loopsway

Dress: Cynthia Rowley via TJ Maxx (similar)
Anchor necklace: c/o LoopsWay
Anchor belt: Lotus Boutique
Earrings: c/o JoJo Loves You
Closure bracelet: Charming Charlie