04 July 2007

Excessive Heat Warning!

It's official -- it's hot. Only 109 today. Tomorrow is suppose to be over 112! In fact, I'm in an area with an excessive heat warning. This is what I get for living in a desert. So, no strenuous outdoor activity, lots of water, and a big bowl of ice cream. Okay, the last one is my own idea, but I'm willing to see if it works to make me cooler.

Actually, 109 isn't so bad with a breeze and no humidity. Well, there's a breeze, but.... Unlike normal heat waves, this one came with clouds. Not the big thunderstorms but high wispy clouds. Well, clouds means humidity otherwise the clouds evaporate over the mountains. So, this 109 is like walking out into a sauna. I doubt that this humidity is enough to lower the fire danger, so all it's doing is making life miserable outside. (Hey, even the cactus wrens are walking around with their mouths open.)

While my house does have air-conditioning, my studio still gets plenty warm. If I turned the a/c to cooler, it would be better in here, but then the rest of the house would be too cool. (I keep it about 82-85, so I'm not sweating but I still adjust to the heat.) So, I adjust my schedule. I now am painting in the morning, knitting or reading in the afternoon (in a cooler room), and then back in here at night to work on my web site or draw (doing colors under artificial light is frustrating to me). I can work with this, except for one minor annoyance. There's nothing interesting on the radio at night. (Hey, I said it was minor!) Flexibility is key to an artistic life.

So, what am I working on? There's a dog portrait, a short-eared owl, a warbler, and an alpaca print. The last item I have done, but I just need time to print it. If it ever gets cooler outside, I'll get back to working on a couple of sculptures, but not when it's 105+! If I can get my web site updated, then I'll have even more time to do art.

And now, I think it's time for that bowl of ice cream.

02 July 2007

Too much???

Yes, I know it's been literally weeks since I last wrote anything. The fact of the matter is that I'm just too tired to do everything I want to do so some things, such as this blog, get left behind.

So here's a few of the things I've been upto lately:
  • I've been dealing with a sick cat and 2 cats with food-issues. This means special food and medication at various times throughout the day. I never realised how nice it was when I had 3 cats and they all ate the same food without any other problems.

  • I've had to deal with various troubles with my husband's truck and his business. While this doesn't take up much time, it's an emotional nightmare. A few hours in the shop and he racks up a bill for $3000! There's only so much money, so I have to juggle bills to pay everything.

  • I'm revamping my web site thanks to a friend talking to a big-name decorator. She wants to show him my work, but I'm insisting that she hold off for a week so I can redo some of my web site. (Like this blog, updating my web site is one of those things that I keep putting off.) I probably have 10 portraits and a dozen botanicals to put up!

  • I've just finished a couple of portraits, but I still have 3 or 4 more to do! Every time I think maybe I've caught up, I get further behind.

  • I decided that come Sept, I will get rid of the garbage service, so I've had to work on starting a compost pile. A compost pile in the desert requires almost daily maintenance.

  • I'm trying to get some bookcases built in my studio so I can actually find books. One thing about doing wildlife art is that you need reference material -- books and photos. But if the reference material is hidden away in boxes or piles, it's really frustrating.

  • I am now back to 'professionally' knitting for 2 different people. One contacted me and we settled on terms. Then another lady contacted me and, since we have had a long-term working relationship, I agreed to do some for her. (If I didn't need the money to cover the vet bills, I'd say 'no'.) I guess I will have something useful to do while sitting in front of the fan when it's 106F outside!

  • And finally, I'm desperately trying to get new work done both to sell now and to have ready for the fall.

I know I'm a bit unrealistic, expecting to be able to do everything, but I don't know what to cut. I keep thinking if I could just work a bit longer or figure out how to do something faster, then it all would fit in a day. Maybe, maybe not. I'm just glad that most of my clients understand and are patient with me!