Thursday, December 21, 2006

Rocky Balboa! - 4 Tissues!

We went to see Rocky Balboa last night. I loved it!

I don't want to ruin some of the happy surprises for anyone that plans to go see it, so I will keep this general. If you have watched Rocky throughout the series, you will discover a lot of full circle style closure in this movie. If you are a Rocky fan, everything you love about Rocky is brought to life in this movie. If you are not such a big fan of Rocky, you might discover a new respect for the old champion. The only prerequisite is that you have seen at least the first movie. Otherwise the full circle effect will not have the impact.

This story line had the potential of getting very unrealistic and cheesy. Rocky is faced with the difficult challenge of preparing for a fight. It is even more challenging, since he has been retired for years. Without spoiling everything, I will tell you that Stalone does not try to pretend that Rocky has not aged or felt the effects of aging. In fact the movie is focused on the effects of age and the challenges you face as you get older. You will see Rocky walking a little slower, thinking a little more and lot more reminiscent of his better days.

Parts of this movie are comfortably predictable. This is Rocky I was watching after all. A couple of times, I thought the story was going to lead into an uncomfortable direction, but Stalone pulled it around to prove that this was the Rocky I loved and adored.

My only nit pick about the movie is that I did not care for the way a couple of the scenes were shot. The fight had some effects that I could have lived without.

If you are looking for an inspirational movie to end the year, this is the one! This movie was inspiring and full of important messages without being over run with mush. Stalone did a wonderful job of writing this. This is the way any Rocky fan wants to see their champion go out. My favorite line in the movie is "You'll get there." I won't tell you why. You will have to go see it for yourself.

This movie gets 4 Tissues from me!

View the trailers
Sylvester Stallone
Metro Mix Interview

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

New Palette!

My wonderful hubby came bursting through the door with a new palette, a palette knife and some ink last night!

William Whitaker has some notes on oil painting materials on Concept Art. I found his section on palettes to be very informative.

My palette was prefinished, so I didn't need to do any finishing. After sanding the thumbhole to a comfortable roundness, I taped batteries to serve as weights on the back. On the front, I taped a spice lid to hold my linseed oil. It may be a bit cheesy, but it works!

Monday, December 11, 2006


David Rourke has me thinking about goals.

First off, let me explain my goal making process. For Pagans, the year ended October 31st. (I claim no religion, I simply know about a few) As it pertains to goal making, this makes much more sense than starting in January. Starting November, the holidays begin to sneak away at your time and the next thing you know, that last thing(s) on your list goes undone because you run out of time. However, if you start your goals in November, you start slow, but get an opportunity to catch up later. While some may argue that the holidays will short your beginning momentum, about the time you need to kick it into gear and get back into a normal routine the rest of our society is talking about making progress and doing the same thing. It is like a booster shot of goal adrenaline.

    The current projects I am working on are
  • Woman with a Lute
  • Because I Miss Her
  • The Structure of Man.
  • I would like to finish those up, of course.

    Some of my other goals are:
  • Learn to use composition rules effectively.
  • Learn to use color effectively.
  • Fill my small pocket sized sketchbook.
  • Do at least one Silverpoint drawing.
  • Complete enough paintings/drawings to participate in at least one of the local art shows.
  • Complete at least one contemporary/surreal piece.
  • Complete at least one real self portrait
  • Get in the practice of reviewing my goals monthly and mark my progress.
  • Produce a portfolio/body of work so I can make more goals

These are not nearly as lofty as some goals I have seen. I will struggle with a few of them. I am so fearful of putting my work in Art Shows it is ridiculous. The thought of it has paralyzed me into creative block and complete lack of motivation. I actually quit going to the studio right after putting work in a show. I felt absolutely unqualified. I am going to concentrate on producing the work. When that is done, I will tackle the fear of the show seperately. I have 10 canvases and several full sheets of paper to get completed.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Selective Mutism and Yadda Yadda Yadda

Not much posting lately, I know. I am coming close to blowing my 3 times a week goal, so here is some Yadda Yadda Yadda.

My youngest daughter has Selective Mutism. She is silent in school and several public places. I have been busy getting her acedemic life on a plan. If you know of a child that is extremely shy you might want to look into it.

Here are some very helpful websites:

Being the parent of a Selective Mute child is challenging. It isn't so much the child that presents the problems, but the people that they come in contact with that must be educated. It is very hard for people to believe that a child goes into complete silence without having been abused in some way. It is very hard for people to believe that a child can be silent for 5 years at school and talk like there is no tomorrow at home. I suppose had I not lived it, I would have a tough time believing this as well.

I am, however, getting weary of the ones that I talk to year after year, repeating myself, restating the obvious, requesting the same requests, to be put off. This is her 5th year at this school and it was referred to, yet again, as an emotional disorder. That is frustrating. I am going to assume that this particular person does not understand the differences between an anxiety and emotional disorder. To do otherwise would just make me furious and I don't want to go there.

Ok enough potential ranting..

The good news is that life inside the walls of my home are going well. It looks like my oldest daughter is going to get to come home for quite a while over Christmas break. I do love to have her home. There is a warmth that swooshes over the house when she arrives. The other kids seem to be like metal to a magnet when she comes through the door. For a brief time, the house feels full and complete. If anyone asked me what I thought my most creative success is in life, I would have to say it is her. I reserve the right to claim more successes as the rest of the kids grow into adults and move out on their own. That seems to be the signature on the masterpiece.

I am just feeling thankful, I guess. I have more joy in a moment than some have in a lifetime. It is no wonder I am constantly trying to create beauty when I am surrounded by the most beautiful people I have ever met. (I know that is biased and I don't really care.) I live an inspired life. I am so very fortunate.