One young Catholic family on a Journey towards Intentional and Communal Sustainability. One Artist, one full time Mama and two babies, we'll tell you about all our successes, and failures, as we try to make it in our overly Consumeristic society on just the bare necessities.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Everyday Art for Art Every Day

Joey is a working artist.  Maybe you haven't heard me say that enough?  (haha, just kidding!)

Joey working with a student during one of this ClayShops

Dancing Bunny by Joey

But what you don't know yet is that we are both artists.  Actually, we are all artists in this house.  Why?  Well, besides the fact that I dabble in creativeness whenever possible, however possible, and besides the fact that Charlotte is a coloring fiend, and besides the fact that Beatrice knows just how to Jackson Pollack up her diaper?  We make art a priority.

Joey and I were talking about priorities the other night.  Every person, every family, has them.  Whether you know it or not.  Are you the kind of person who lives for that 10 minute run at the end of the day and dreams of the day that it could last forever "if only you didn't have the dishes and laundry to do".  Well, then dishes and laundry are your priority- over running.  You've said so, it's true. 

Charlotte and Clay
If you walk into our house, you won't find clean counters or immaculate floors.  Those only exist if my in-laws are coming or I'm having a house party.  Or maybe if I'm having a crazy day.  Or I'm 2 weeks overdue with a baby.  Anyway, you'll almost never find that.  What will you find?

A Perpetual Art Table in the family room for Charlotte to color however, whenever she wants.  Often, you'll find Joey or I drawing here as well.  And we save the butcher block style paper to make cards and wrap presents in. 

Charlotte with her Godmother at the art table

Clay.  Everywhere in every state imaginable.  There is ceramic art hanging from every wall, on every shelf, and in every cupboard.  There's often a little ball of clay rolling around on my carpet (way easier to get out then playdough I might add) and there's always clay dust footprints leading up from the studio in the basement where Joey works all day.  And if you go down those stairs?  Heaven forbid, it's ALL clay!

A finished Yarn project by Britt
Yarn.  From projects in process or never to be completed.  I'm ok with those.  I like to think that I'll finish them someday, but I know I won't.  I like to look at the "Octopus blanket" I started to make when I first learned how to crochet and think about how much fun I had, and how much yarn it took!  I'll never finish it, this I know for a fact, but I still like it.  And if it's ruined, I don't care.  Too much.

Fabric.  Again in different states of progress.  I like things that way.  Besides, I have babies.  By the way, I'm not much of a pattern follower as I am a pattern maker-upper.  I think I drive people crazy sometimes because of this.  I often drive myself crazy because of this.
Bea's Baptismal gown made by Britt

Digital Cartoon Britt by Britt
The Camera.  I try to keep the battery up and the lens clean(ish) and the whole thing as accessible as possible.  I love photography.  My Dad taught me everything I know on a Minolta (which I still proudly own, and sometimes use) growing up, and then I learned how to manipulate digitally on the computer when I got my Nikon as a wedding present.  Although I don't do that much any more since we don't have any good programs and I don't have any large amount of time to devote to small details.
Digital Cartoon Joey by Britt

"Deady Bear" by Joey- magnet
Ideas.  We have 3 dry erase boards in the kitchen, a corkboard in the "office/sewing/movie room", a chalkboard in the studio and ideas on slips of paper everywhere.  Joey used to carry a tiny notebook, but since he's home more, I find drawing and sketches of future projects everywhere.

Art Museum pamphlets, Gallery Opening Cards, our friend's paintings and drawings and doodles, magazine clippings of words and colors, homemade magnets, cartoon stickers drawn onto package labels.  If it's artable, we art it.

Oh, and then there's the kitchen "art" of course.  I have been having a lot of fun with that lately since my sewing machine requires a clear lap-most of the time.

We have Fun!
So anyway, Joey and I make art a priority.  Everyday.  Maybe we don't always have matching clothes because I forgot to start the dryer, and more than likely if you come to my house I'll have to clear the counters in order to make you a cup of tea. But we're happy. Our children are happy.  And our family knows where our priorities lie.  Art is just one of them, of course, and yes our dishes and laundry do (usually) get done.  But I can't preach that everybody should have a spotless house and a perfect loaf of bread every day because I don't think everybody should.  That's not how God made us.  We are not Carbon Copies of the same 1950's housewife, and I'm happy for that.

Zombie Turtle Cartoon by Joey
Every Saturday we will be bringing  you Every Day Art.  This will be a recap of how we brought art into our home that week, with suggestions and projects for you to help you bring it into yours. Art is not always paint on a canvas or clay on a wheel. And sometimes it's not the end result itself, but the process that brings you beauty and peace into your home.  I hope you enjoy it.  I also hope you jump in and tell us how you bring art into your lives, or better yet, how you incorporate your own family priorities into your everyday life.

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