Sunburst Painting

Remember that general feeling of malaise I was telling you about? It’s still kicking around, but I’m working really hard to shake it. This weekend, I tried bibimbap for the first time (in an authentic stone bowl, in a tiny Korean restaurant that looked like someone’s wood-panelled basement) and fell in love. I ran a race that made me into a rainbow! I shared a few good bottles of wine with good friends (after finding out that good wine can be bought on the cheap, I’ve been making an effort). I baked cookies at a party. I read my book, and got caught up in its magic, whimsy, and sadness. I had a long shift at work, punctuated by watching that crazy guy jump out of space on a customer’s iPad. I had some nice talks. I found out about an awesome knitting store in the area. And I made this painting.

Practicing gratitude like that always makes me feel a million times better. All of those things, at the time, may not have felt like much – but they truly were all special and it’s nice to recognize that.

This painting was inspired by this photo and this version, though I liked the colour scheme of the first much better than the second. I’m all about bright, happy primary colours after all! I read in the comments on one of those two posts, someone suggesting an off centre midpoint, and I instantly loved the idea. I immediately saw a picture in my head of the way I wanted it to be laid out, and got the stuff later that day. I already had some paint leftover from this project, but I bought some orange and pink to go along with them. The canvas was a 12×14 canvas I got on sale. I used regular painter’s tape, but I had some problems with it. It didn’t like to stick down to the surface of the canvas, so not all of my lines were as clean as I would have liked them to be. Boo!

These projects always seem to be an exercise in patience, calm, and letting go. I always get into a “flow” state, where the time is passing and all I’m thinking about is how to solve the problems that are arising. It’s so calming to see a project take shape, regardless of how frustrating the process might have been. And I am always reminded to let go of the need for perfection. This painting is nowhere near perfect. The lines aren’t all clean, the colours aren’t all exactly what I wanted, some of the painting turned out a little patchy, the center where all the points meet is a bit messy.

But guess what? That’s not the point of this painting. The point is that I needed something fun to do. The point is that it’s bright and cheerful and lightens up my space. The point is it will only be seen from across the room, and from there it looks perfect.

I taped out the triangles one at a time. I mixed paint colours (on a pad of paper) using turquoise, yellow, orange, pink and white. (Creativity was needed, and I was happy about that). I went back and touched up sections. I learned a quarter of the way through to paint much thinner layers of paint, so it dries faster. I also learned to press the tape down very carefully. By the end I think I mastered it!

It fits absolutely perfectly into that space on my wall that looked unfinished. The colours look dull in this photo, because I took the picture late at night, but trust me it is stunning, and brightening up my whole space. Easy, simple, happy.

Happy Monday!

1/10: “Follow Your Bliss” Art

Okay, so I technically did most of this project on December 30th, but since I still did some touch-ups, re-sizing, and framing in 2012, I’m counting it towards my 2012 projects! Besides, I need some momentum on this goal, otherwise I’ll lose hope and fall behind. And with that, I give you my very first DIY project of 2012: a painted poster!

I got my inspiration for this project from Elise Blaha (don’t click the link unless you feel like falling down the rabbit hole of her blog for a few hours) who did a larger, more elegant version that used song lyrics and a real canvas. I’d had this saying/motto/phrase of “follow your bliss” floating around in my head for a few days, so one quiet, snowy afternoon I decided to make a print of it.

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Writing: Inspiration & Motivation

Since my last post about writing, I’ve been trying to incorporate writing into my day-to-day life. I think I’m making some progress, and that makes me feel so happy. As I said in the last article, writing is something I want to practice, improve and enjoy. I want to make it more of a priority! And I think I’m being successful so far, so I wanted to share some of the things that have been helping me with my goals.


I’ve been really drawing inspiration from the world of writing over the past week! I’ve written out about a dozen cards, filled with great quotes about writing. There are some great resources for quotes here and here. The cards are scattered around my workspace, and my eyes tend to fall on them while I’m spacing out from work. Great system so far!

I’ve read some great articles about the art of writing! My favourite is a piece from The Guardian about various writers’ top 10 rules for writing. There are some contradictions, definitely, but it’s so interesting.

I watched Finding Forrester a few days ago, and definitely got some inspiration! It was wonderful to take a look inside (albeit a fictional) writer’s life, see how they work and what they suggest. His line: “write your first draft with your heart, re-write with your head” is a great one that will stick with me for some time. I hope to watch some other films about writers, like those listed here.

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