May 30, 2010 - 7:00 PM
I hate drawing right now. There I said it. The artist is ranting now because after spending 5+ hours, the page has become a mess. Why do I feel so challenged? I think it's because I am having so much difficulty in letting my hand loose. I tend to try to perfect things, caring too much about each little line. This is a flaw I am still having trouble breaking as an artist. The subject matter in the end becomes stiff. The sense of the organic shape is lost. There is drawing and there is rendering. I believe I find more pleasure in rendering my images because I like drawing mirror images of what I see. Also, the reason my page is now a mess is because I kept adding too much. First I drew only in pencil, then I added charcoal and white chalk. Terrible combination if one does not plan out the final outcome. I just experimented with what I had and now I really regret it.
This also brings up another point that I have always contemplated, as an art student can our work really be graded? Experimentation is what many art students are supposed to do in order to develop their creativity and style. If the piece does not look good, but the effort is shown, how does one grade the piece? I am expecting to walk out with an A from my drawing class because that is what my drawing professor said to us. Over the many years he has taught, he realized that it is nearly impossible to grade art. Good art can be bad, and what can be considered bad may actually be good. Art is racking my brain as of now. What is desired by me? What is desired by the school? What is desired by society? What do I do? In this drawing class I've been taught to let go of my views, to lighten my grip on the pencil and let my arm glide over the page. Unfortunately, I am having difficulty grasping that.
My final drawing project is pretty open, just as long as we can incorporate the techniques learned from the class. The piece is not due till Wednesday, but I was hoping to finish it in order to start working on my videos effects project, and to study for my Chinese lit exam. Maybe after a day or two, I'll look at it again and fix it. Maybe I'll decide to scrap it and start a new piece. This is the love hate relationship all artists must deal with.
May 25, 2010 - 4:00 PM
I just looked in my bag of "warm fuzzies" from the HKSA beach retreat, and yes they actually do make you feel warm and fuzzy! I opened my bag to find 3 dozen little notes. They were all funny, and really sweet. I'm really glad we decided to do this and I hope many people liked it as well. In my previous blog, I mentioned that we had made each HKSA retreat guest a personalized paper bag with their photo and name on it. Over the weekend we encouraged everyone to write at least one nice note to everyone on this retreat.
I really love seeing everyone gather by the fireplace mantle as if it were Christmas, writing and stuffing notes into others, and peeking at their own bags as well. Most of my comments were about the success of the beach retreat, and my active role as president. I really loved each and every comment, and I wish I could have written more.
Here are a few of my favorite comments:
-Even if we couldn't light that fire on the beach, you always light the fire in our hearts, thanks for helping this trip turn out great!
-If you were a booger, I'd pick you!
-Hope you're having fun this weekend! Thanks for putting this together.
-There is so many things to say about how cool you are. If I had a chance I would probably write a book about you. The memories I have with you will always be priceless.
May 24, 2010 - 10:00 AM
Driving back last night from the Oregon coast was both a sigh of relief and a longing to turn around and go back to the sandy shores. HKSA's spring retreat had been planned since last year, and we finally were able to make it happen. The weather forecast predicted wrong, and we had a few warm sunny moments in Yachats, Oregon. A two hour drive from Eugene, the beaches there were not as windy, nor as cold as I thought it would be. This made my entire weekend since prior to the retreat I feared that the weather would prevent us from our outdoor activities.
There was a lot of work that had to be done, and it would not have been possible without everyones support. Thirty-six members attended this event. With the six being HKSA committee members. We stayed at a spacious house, with a gorgeous view of the Ocean. Everyone was able to sleep comfortably, with maybe 10 people on couches and sleeping bags. Our scheduled had been planned day by day, with assigned cooking and cleaning duties. As nervous as I was about running the whole trip, everything went smoothly and according to plan. Food was plentiful and good, despite a couple of black pancakes.
We left at 3:30, Friday, and spent the first day settling and playing ice breaker games. Our goal for this trip was to get the members to bond and name games are a must! On the fireplace mantle the committee also made personalized paper bags for each beach retreat guest with their name and photo on it. These are "warm fuzzies," and throughout the weekend we asked everyone to write at least one comment to each person in the house. At the end everyone was allowed to take their bags and read all the notes in it. We thought this would be a little something special to end the retreat, and it became a big success. I was so happy when people would stop occasionally to write a few note for someone they just met.
Another big activity we had was a group relay race. Saturday's beautiful weather made me so happy! After breakfast we packed everyone in the vans and headed for the beach. It was so gorgeous and the area was very clean. The sun was shining and everyone spent an hour roaming and enjoying the scenery as the committee team helped set up the relay course. There were 6 teams of 6, and we decided only 3 teams would go at once. This left the other half to help supervise the race.
The first station had a long wooden rod in the sand and the first person would spin their head around it three times and meet up with the next person at station 2. At station 2 there were two cups, and the two people there would have to run to the ocean and bring the water back to fill the entire bucket. When that was done, the person who was at station 2 would then meet up with the person at station 3 where each person had to finish 10 saltine crackers. After that the person who was at station 3 would run to station 4 where they would help build and fly a kite and run it to the next station. The final station is chugging half a litter bottle of water. Only the person who was waiting at station 5 had to drink it. After finishing that bottle the person who was at station 5 would meet the person at station at 6 where they have to dig under a flag for strips of colored cloth representing their team. The final part of the race is a leg race. The two people at station 5 would tie a strip of cloth around their legs and then meet up with the last person at each station until the entire team was tied together. The finishing line was at station one and by that time there was already a feet of water covering the area which made the relay course even more competitive.
Strength as many learned from this race, was not what led to the winning team. Team work and communication is what's most important. Failed communication was also one thing that brought my team to place 5th place. I apparently I cannot build a kite and when I was told to tie the string to the kite, I tied it wrong. Our group also fell over in the legged race because we couldn't get ourselves coordinated. It was all in good fun though and I'm pretty sure everyone enjoyed the race from all the smiles and laughter that came out of it. So who were the winners and what did they get? Team yellow won first place, and they all got small water guns with the privilege of squirting us for all for the entire weekend. It didn't become such a great idea when they started playing in the house, and I had to take up my maternal roles and told them to play outside.
I tried to get everyone to spend as much time together outdoors. The beach was a 10 minute drive from the house so whenever we did anything together it was mostly outside. On our last day there, we saw a deceased whale that had washed up on shore overnight. It is interesting to see how this one death would gather so many people to one spot. I also got to see a dried up sturgeon and a molting seal. The seal was alive but looked uncomfortable. There was a sign that was picketed right in front of it stating that people should stand 50 ft away from the animal. I guess this is a natural process, so I didn't worry too much about it. The whale was a sad incident, but I soon forgot all about it when we attempted to build a fire! The night before, we drove a bunch of people at night to look at the stores. We attempted to make a fire but unfortunately failed. This time though we succeeded with the firewood we had bought in the morning. Everyone got the opportunity to make smores before they left.
One of the vans took those who needed to get back by 5, and the van I was driving were the ones who didn't mind staying. We stayed till 7:30 to tidy up the house and ate dinner before we left. By the time I got home, it was almost 10. I was so exhausted from cleaning and driving that I fell into a deep sleep and forgot to finish my blogs regarding this weekend. Opps!!! Supposedly due yesterday, I had decided that I would take a quick nap, and wake up at 4 to write and submit my entires before the deadline, which was at 8am:( I woke up instead running to my 9am digital animations class. This is why next year, I will not be continuing my title as the president of HKSA. There is just so much work in running a club, and its about time that I start focusing on my career and studies for my senior year.
May 17, 2010 - 3:30 AM
As I look back on this past beautiful weekend, I can hear the raindrops hitting the window. My weekend was filled with sunbathing and long walks near the river. Yesterday, my friend, Monica and I took a walk from campus to the Valley River Mall. A nice three mile walk from campus, the weather was very warm, but the breeze from the rushing river kept us cool. I love walking along the river path. To get to VRC, one must walk past Alton Park. The main attraction is the pond there. Usually inhabited by ducks and geese's, I only saw a handful of the usually gathering. Perhaps spring season has pushed the animals away from their usual hang out. I've seen quite a few ducklings and goslings in Eugene recently, which is probably why many are in hiding.
OR, could it be that Nutria???? Lurking in the waters, a dark brown furry animal swam up to us and climbed on shore while we were there. It looked like a hybrid of a beaver and a giant rat. I've seen them all the time in the river, but never have I seen them so close. Apparently they have become a pest, and it is now encouraged for people to hunt and eat them. I don't know if I would though. The nutria had the most creepiest face, and its tail looked exactly like a rats. An over grown one that probably has inhabited the sewers....
In total I think I spent 5 hours outside, and walked 6miles, to and from the mall. I got a chance to chit chat on a rock and dipped my feet in the cold rushing waters. What a relaxing and comfortable day! Now we only have rain to look forward to all week. Fingers crossed that it stops before the HKSA beach retreat!
May 16, 2010 - 8:00 PM
I just finished a drawing for an art auction hosted by the University of Oregon Amnesty International Chapter. Scheduled for May 22nd, the event is to help raise money for victims of the genocide in Darfur. I am not too familiar with this group, but one of their goals is to raise awareness regarding international human rights issues. I was approached by Karissa, who I know through a mutual friend to make a piece. This happened probably a month ago, and I kept pushing my work back further and further. I ended up not having enough time, which was bad on my part. I wanted to make something spectacular. A painting or sculpture perhaps. My creative juices were flowing, but unfortunately I never got around to initiating them.
Even though the artworks could be of any theme, I thought it would be really great if I did something that related to the people and culture of Darfur. The purpose of the auction is to support a specific cause, and a lasting memory of the specific area that the donor chose to help would've been perfect. Unfortunately it slipped my mind for awhile, and had to pull something together tonight. I drew a picture of two cranes, an important symbol for peace and longevity. I thought that this would also be appropriate for the idea behind the auction. The drawing was done with an ink pen and a red ballpoint pen. Yup! the kind of pen that a teacher would use to grade papers :)
Ever since I majored in digital arts, I left all my fine arts supplies at home. I made use with what I had in my room and drew something that I enjoyed. Hopefully a bidder will find interest in my piece. I wish I started a little bit earlier today, so that I could actually plan out the composition, but I'm at a point where I really am at the end of the time line. Lesson learned.