chantico: (Painting)
I. I have been *Doing Things*. Many of them, actually. Where on earth do I start?

First, I should say OMHIGOD CONGRATS to [ profile] swantower and [ profile] kniedzw for their wedding. I saw the pictures, or at least some pictures, and they all look exceptionally lovely and romantic and wonderful. It sounds like you all had a marvelous time; I'm very very sad I couldn't be there. I'm not going to write to much more on the subject, because I already walked into Italian class all teary after lookign at the pictures and if I start wibbling now I will never get my errands done.

Classes are not intense, but there are a lot of them. Most unpleasantly, they are on an American schedule, which flabbergasts me and makes it very difficult to get used to an Italian schedule (i.e. everything being closed whenever we have a break for food/errands or all fun stuff that goes late happening the day before we have early classes). I love all of my teachers, however. The art teacher, Raffaela, is AMAZING. Mostly because she's *harsh*. Not mean, just very, very unforgiving. If you're doing it wrong, she'll lay it on you like a cat macro, and if you're doing it right she'll be pleased and point out everything that's still wrong about it. And we are not, NOT allowed to call ourselves artists. Sellable, maybe. Not artists.

Whether I agree or not, I have improved leaps and bounds under her tutelage, happy to let someone else criticize my work instead of constantly obsessing about it on my own. It makes me yearn for some kind of artists circle in Bloomington who can look at what I do and tell me. "This is fucked up. Here's how you fix it." And likewise I can do the same.

My italian is also improving, though usually only in specific phrases, like "Where is ____?" "What is this bizarre thing on the menu?" and "No, I do not want to 'make friendly' with you!" Also, my bargaining skills are rapidly becoming leet. I bought my first big present to myself (a sparkly of great magnitude) and I brought it down from 100 euro to 50.

In life, I have been CLEANING UP after myself, doing the dishes, making my bed and doing my laundry. This I take more than anything as successfully upkeeping The Ritual of self-evaluation/change that I began in coming over here. I am most pleased.

Also, I have been travelling. Descriptions under the cuts, as they are long. Since I am very lazy and very busy, they are cut and pasted from e-mails I have sent out earlier.

Capri, Sorrento and Pompeii )
San Gimignano and Siena )
Non Traveling Bad Parts )

As if this wasn't long enough, I have finished my first piece of painting in months: a piece that's actually very important for my spiritually, as it's the first one done out of a series of Oracle cards I am making just for me, and represents the stage I was in when I first traveled here. I am very, very proud of it.

ART! )
chantico: (Refreshed)
Walking past the rope barriers and into airport security was one of the hardest things I have ever done. I feel like I left a part of myself waiting in the airport terminal, engaging in conversation with strangers just so that my mouth was moving and something like terror, but more subtle and lost, did not overwhelm me. I lost sight of me/her as I stepped through the boarding gate, and unto that plane. It looked from the inside like the gullet of some beast, ribbed like a throat and about as comfortable. The night before I left for the first leg of my trip I woke up haunted with the name of a poem I read once upon a time and one time through— Luke Havergal. It was— is— appropriate. By passing across the sea, I stepped, not unwittingly, through my own western gate, eastern though the direction might have been. Now, I feel suspended between, a thread pulled taut and about to be released.

Florence and Tuscany feel like homes I’ve never had, but also alien and very frightening. There’ve been some hang-ups that have contributed to the feeling of being helpless, washed in one direction or another by an ocean of unfamiliarity. Somehow, my jewelry disappeared from my luggage—I’m sad about that one, because I had a locket in there from my young childhood, and a gold necklace my grandfather gave me when Grandma Kok died. At the very least, I remembered to carry my sparklies directly with me, though some of them were damaged in transit . . . nothing a little superglue won’t cure. Food is very cheap here, which is good, because the exchange rate is worse than I thought. I can’t take my watercolor class, because it overlaps with all of my classes I actually need the credits for, but I’m hoping to sit in sometimes, and this means my paints, which I could not directly bring because of flight risk or something, can be sent without fear of too much time passing.

Mostly I’m lonely, overwhelmed and scared- and absolutely starstruck. The lonely part is pretty bad. My roommates are nice, but continents away from where I am and why I’m here. Apparently my Italian payphones doesn’t register on people’s cell phones, and so they don’t hear when I call, and I’m left wanting to talk to them more than before, having wistfully listened to their phone ring three or four times in hope they would pick up. My new phone card won’t let me leave messages either.

I’m sure things will get better, and quickly. The adjustment time is hard, especially when you’ve left someone behind who you miss very, very badly. Florence itself is *amazing*. I can hardly believe that I’ve seen the things I’ve seen just today—the Duomo, the Ponte Vecchio, the Uffizi, the Rape of the Sabine Women, and the million small streets, shops, markets and squares (and scooters!) that are everywhere. Ohhh, do I wish I had more money . . . the shopping! Dolce and Gabbana! Prada! Armani! Versace! Miu Miu! Guess! Downtown is the leathermarket, with shoes and bags for as little as 15 euros . . . that’s about 25 dollars. And the men . . . rowr. The city s surrounded by the Tuscan skyline: mountains sublimely beautiful, a deep blue sky that turns green-gold like the underside of a leaf in the evening. I know know what “Purple mountain’s majesty”, really means. Tuscany is a land of *warmth*. Everything is red and gold and dark green, purple and charcoal, all without appearing burned out like Bloomington does right now.

I feel bad about how very, very American the group I’m traveling with really is, with a few exceptions. As I said before, my roommates are sweet, but loud and kind of oblivious. Going to dinner with a large group the other night was kind of horrifying. They were so loud and obnoxious, and seemed to have no idea that they were being so. Classes started today, and they seem really good. Sunday I had a little time to get my bearings around the city, which is freaking Kafkaesque in it’s design sometimes.

Overall-- hangups aside, WOOOOO. I have to go now and catch my classes, but tomorrow there should be some more details on some of the specific sites, and some pictures, starting with my apartment and room WHICH IS SINGLE HAHAHAHA.
chantico: (Distractable)
Today I wore my Spring Dress. It is green, and flatters my shape, and soft. And it means warm weather and breezes and grass between my toes, and sunlight. Finally. I'm almost free, and while my mind is edging on panic because I'm really not writing my papers fast enough, I'm pleased with the world. My icon is appropriate, though . . . I have creativity, and it could not have come at a worse time because I'm world building instead of mucking through Nietzsche. I have Art in mind. It is driving me nuts that I shouldn't be painting. Baaahhhh!

But hey, at least there's some inspiration there, inconvenient as it might be.

So this week, I finish up Finals and some paperwork for the Italy trip, next week I take a brief breather and then move (Oh, yes, moving . . . I haven't packed at all . . .), and the week after that I hopefully start my third job. Aside from the GP, I'm also working at Howard's Bookstore, and will hopefully (oh, the irony) be working at Dial America, too. FLORENCE IS WORTH IT.

Other than that, I have nothing of substance to share. Just letting you know I live.
chantico: (Rushed)
Hmm. That looks like . . . no, it couldn't be . . . is that a tsunami? No . . . no, it looks like it's composed of little pieces of paper . . . oh, god help us.

It's homework. Run! Run for the hills!

And so it begins. Until the beginning of May, I will be mostly doing *nothing* but homework. The amount is is slightly exaggerated-- I have Italian finals, my philosophy paper, an anatomy notebook, 25 hands/heads/feet, sketchbook, and final take home test for my art history class-- but the quality of all has to be *excellent*. No half-assing finals this year.

Last night I was plagued by nightmares about missing deadlines, being unable to print, and forgetting homework/entire classes. Eek.

However, otherwise I feel good. Maybe this telling myself I'm happy thing is working.

Not enough hours in the day.
chantico: (Moody)
Yesterday was not as productive as I would have liked, but I did manage to spend the day *doing things* rather than sitting in front of my computer doing nothing at all except puttering around the internet and fidgeting with iTunes. As much as I like doing these things, when I get things done, no matter what they are, it always makes me feel like a better person-- I have accomplished something, therefore I am capable of accomplishing other things. Lo, I have left my mark on the world-- even if it is only because I did my laundry. Which is indeed what I spent yesterday doing, and some of monday. Laundry. ALL THE LAUNDRY. IN THE WORLD. For serious, yo. I also cleaned the upstairs, including nasty things like getting lint anf grime out of corners, scrubbing the shower and dusting the bedroom (no wonder my nose has bneen so stuffy for monthes-- it was like a bunch of dustbunnies rigged themselves with TNT in some kind of suicidal attack on the bookcases). I also did a little painting, and a LOT of studying for my Italian oral exams today. Those did not go well. Or, my teacher said they went well, but I don't trust my teacher, and I stuttered and mumbled and understood nothing, so they couldn't have.

Ahhh, Italian. You are a langauge I actually enjoy. it's a shame that I can't speak you at all because my head is like a sieve and my tongue like a dead slug.

I am subleasing my apartment for June/July. It is cheap (245-295 a month). Anyone looking?
chantico: (Default)
Holy crap, was it a nightmare trying to walk around this morning. My butt hurts from the ridiculous amount of pratt-falling I did. It did tickle my funny bone, at least, even if I missed my bus because I stpped out onto a parking lot/solid sheet of ice, went head over heels, and then fell over three more times trying to stand up. I have managed to ambulate around doing the ever useful penguin waddle-- that special side to side shuffle with itty bitty footsteps. I must have looked ridiculous.

That and music have been helping me combat that horrible, no good, very bad, absolutely fucking rotten feeling I woke up with this morning. I had an archetypical dream of realizing that I'd forgotten to study for something very important school wise-- except this very important thing was that my Painting class had decided to preform appendectomies this week on each other, and I was supposed to go under the knife tommorrow and then preform the same operation on a fellow student 4 hours later.

This speaks volumes about how I feel on the subject of oil painting/school in general at the moment. It also speaks volumes about my memry right now, which is CRAP. Even worse than usual. So if I forget anything important people, I'm very sorry . . . I'm not quite sure what's going on, though I have a feeling it's stress related. I know anxiety can eat up a good chunk of your memory processes, so maybe that's it.

Bah, I don't want to even get into that right now.

Um . . . yeah, that's all.

(PS: I cannot believe I spelled appendectomy right)
chantico: (Default)
I've finally come up with some viable plans for what I'm doing next year, which is reducing my anxiety at leats somewhat. Even if they're still flighty and nowhere near concrete, I have back-up plans no matter what happens (within the realm of foreseeable possibility of course).

Most of my worry stems from the uncertainty of living situation, let alone school. These are the options that I have been working with:

1. I go to Italy in the Fall, and temporarily store my stuff at my mother's, renting a place come January. This is complicated by the uncertinaity on whether I shall be:
a. Going to school full time the following semester
b. Going to school part time the following semester
c. Unable to afford school.
2. I go to Italy in the Spring. This still raises the other school questions, and adds another variable:
a. Find a short-term lease/sublease for August-Jan
b. Move back in with my mother.
c. Find a roomate who has someone else lined up to live with them come January.
3. I do not go to Italy, and things progress as normal.

I would be able to deal with most of this, if it wasn't for that fact that, really, in the situation I'll be in next fall, paying full rent for a place is going to be just *stupid*. I will be spending most of my time at Knightridge, since [ profile] deadmanwade, [ profile] moonartemis76, [ profile] oddsboy, [ profile] kniedzw, [ profile] swan_tower and a plethora of others will be living there. I will never be at home, and I am remiss to pay 400+ dollars a month for something I am not going to be using. On the other hand, I *hate* being homeless and without a space of my own. Splitting my time like I do now is bad enough, and has caused more than a little irritation on my part. At long last, I have established a space that is MINE, and going back to floating through other people's territories does not appeal in the least. I do not mind sharing my space with a roomate or housemates or whatever, but it still has to be invested as my home territory. Not having that is just uncomfortable.

However, so is officially moving back in with my mother, being there regularly or not. Besides, I vowed I wouldn't be the type of student who gets to the end of school and moves back in with their parents; I've been self-sufficent since I was 17, barring a half-semester of hell when I temporarily needed shelter.

More important than that, I need a space where I can work. Not having access to my shinies and my books is one thing; not having access to my art supplies and a place to create is another.

So in short: I need a space where I can crash if I need to but won't feel obligated to, where I will not being paying stupid rent, where I can work, and that I can make mine. I need a studio.

I talked it over with my mom last night, and she agreed that for a hundred bucks a month I could establish a small space in either her basement or upstairs room. This avoids the problems of actually living with her, and allows me a place to go so I'm not just a freeloader at whomever's house. Anya can stay there but I will still see her regularly, and I will have space uncluttered by furniture and 'house stuff' where I can set up an art space.

I still have to figure out the Italy thing, which I waver back and forth on whether I want to bother pursuing and be dissapointed, or try anyway because I will never forgive myself if I just give up. I don't think I'm going- I'm just too poor and have nothing to fall back on for help-- but with luck and hardwork there is a SLIM chance that I can scrape together enough funds for it. The cost for one semester is more than an entire years of living expenses and tuition for IU, but because I am finally claiming myself as an independant on my taxes and FAFSA (despite living on my own for forever), I think a lot more money will be available to me.
chantico: (Default)
I finally started the long and involved process of applying for overseas study, and might get shut down at the gate. I have no idea at all how I could cover afford it, unless I went to school for *one* semester next year and took the maxium amount of loans I am allowed to get in a year. That means I would have to wait a whole other year to graduate, and have a job where I could actually pay rent starting that January. And even then, it wouldn't cover it, and I would still have to scrape together the money for emergencies, spending money, supplies and a passport (not to mention vaccinations!).

Wow. I'm starting to realize how much of a pipe dream this really is.

This semester is going to kick my ass. Aside from taking Advanced Oil Painting (bleh), I'm enrolled in Italian, my intensive writing course ( Religious Philosophy, a 400 level Philosophy course-- I have hithero taken Intro to Philosophy), a 400 level art history, and Anatomy for the Artist, absolutely the most intensive art class IU offers.

I'm going to DIE.
chantico: (Bizarre)
I am sitting in my 8AM class the the teacher still hasn't shown up yet. Today she is supposed to teach my some basic functions of flash that she had to go home last class the teach herself first. I am expecting a couple hours of bumbling.

But! I am still cheerful. Because I have nothing pressing due. or, well, I do, but it's stuff I like and I have a Plan.

*shifty eyes* And, uh, don't tell anyone, but I have a ton of Changeling glamour right now too.

Soooo . . . meme!

EDIT: She finally came in at 8:39

Seduction! )
chantico: (Emo)

So I've finally finished my homework for this round (not counting what I have due for tommorrow). Next, the eight or nine watercolors I have due nect wednesday, my final to study for the week after that, a comparison of obscure Japanese movies, a Flash movie, and (to interrupt my bitching) what has to be the coolest final project EVER, wherein I have to draw four-five pictures/write a four-five page story about Tokyo of the Future.

Out of all of that, the thing I'm worried about the most (other than the watercolors, but those are fun) is the Flash movie, mostly because I do not in any way know how to use Flash, and the teacher in my T230 class knows jack shit. Seriously, nothing at all. She tried to show me how to execute a (supposedly) simple move in the program today and spent the entire THREE HOURS of class fucking up and finally admitting at the end she didn't know what she was doing. I warned her that she might just get a final project that consists of a ball bouncing around on the screen, since that is all she was capable to teaching. Not quite so rudely, of course. This is the same teacher that shows up for class an hour late most of the time and half of those times cancels the class altogether.

You know, I'm not looking forward to growing up an being an adult, but it has got to be a damn sight easier than this shit.

So, yeah. Cranky. Stressed. Depressed. Volitile.

And hungry.
chantico: (Default)
Now that the intial numbness has worn off, I'm pretty sure I broke my pinky and ring toes on my left foot. Walking around on them is a holy *bitch*, and they throb with pain constantly. I've never broke anything, including toes, and this feels nastier than sprained digits, which I've had before. Taking a peek at them (as much as I could, it hurt too much to try and pry the bandages off right now) they are mighty swollen.

I should develop a remarkably pretty (and large) bruise on my left hip, too. I shall be sad if it doesn't show up, because it sure feels like it will, and I haven't had a note worthy bruise in a long time. I hope to take pictures of it for later painting reference. I want to do the same with my toes, because broken or not, rhey are still pretty mangled. I think I'm going to lose the pinkie nail. It shall be gloriously disgusting.

Midterms went okay. My watercolors turned out well, and my essays weren't as hard as I feared. now I hunker down to write a six page paper on a topic for I which I can find *no* references that are in English. Tears!
chantico: (Default)
The first part of my financial aid *finally* arrived, leaving the 'mind-numbing panic' reflex of coming rent lost, lonely and confused, surrounded by cheering throngs of the 'spend money', 'eat real food', 'feel human again' reflexes.

I have purchased a new sketch book, as I've filled all my others, and began it by doodling whatever I could see in front of me. Lots of tiny, thumbnail sized sketches came out of it. Scary bus people have to be the best subjects ever, as long as they don't notice you staring at them, because then they get *really* creepy and/or crazy.

The next things I need to purchase are a harddrive and Window's discs, so that I may revive my poor dead computers and begin anew. I have tried my wacom on other systems, but either it is finally giving out or it despises any computer that is not christened by me, characterized by it randomly deciding to draw lines where I didn't want them/not draw at all. I mean, I really hope it isn't dead, but that thing has had a very long and fruitful life for hardware-- it'll be 7-8 years old this december.

I bought myself a few presents yesterday for not completely dying and losing my mind at the horrible setbacks in my lack of money, leaving me with two new artbooks. I have one of the Pre-Raphaelites, focusing more on the advent of the school and its predecessors than others I've seen; I also have required a giant book full of Norman Rockwell, who has to be one of my favorite artists EVER, up there with Mucha, Waterhouse and Leonardo. His expressions! His body language! His light! His sense of humor! Ah!

Good books. Avery am pleased.

Um . . . not much else, other than some links:

First up, we have some fantastic and fascinating resources that detail all the different types of humans and how to break them down proportionally. Great for artists, but an interesting purusal for anyone else, too:

Secondly, this article disturbed me quite a bit. Dunno why . . .

And third, I posted this in the comments to my last post, but this is the rant which kicked off my ponderings. it's a good read, if long. It's interesting . . . right after I finished this, I stumbled into a debate over whether or not its right and 'honest' for an artist to use photo references for their works. I'm not sure how I feel about it . . . on one hand, I really, really hate people like Greg Land and that guy who does the Punisher MAX covers whose name I cannot remember at the moment who simply trace over photos (PORN STILLS, in Greg Land's case). The end result is pretty, and the craft takes some discipline, but I don't know if I would rightly call it 'art', or even good (more so in Land's case-- the other guy manages some pretty neat effects with his tracings). on the other hand, even the masters used refernces and sometimes projectors to get their effects, and models are considered a necessity in most college art courses.

I think I lie somewhere in the middle . . . I think it's good to have a reference, but you can't rely on it fully. You need to make a new and interetsing peice, not a copy of a photograph. it's good to be able to understand things like light and texture and anatomy, but if you can't elaborate on them and change them some to suit your needs, you're shit out of luck.

Uh, anyway . . . here's the link.

Finally, we have the digital manips I did for my project in T230. I *very* much like "And on 'Til Morning", and shall probably have a poster made of it sometime.

chantico: (Gleeful)
On the verge of giving up and resigning myself to the fate of Sculpture class, I found, magically, a cool class meeting during the right time with plenty of openings, for the right credits, and it's an upper level class. I shall be taking H-300-- History of Edo/Tokyo. I keep wondering if there's a catch. . . but it didn't say anything about pre-requsites or anything, soooo . . . MINE!

Still plenty of openings for anyone else looking for bad class freedom.
chantico: (Refreshed)
Sculpture, it seems, is not going to be nearly as amusing as I hoped, for several reasons. Perhaps I'm just being oversensitive and suffering a flaring case of Intellectual Elitism, but I feel really fucking weird taking a class from a guy who can't spell sketch or syllabus (schtch and silabus, respectively) and can't put together a correct sentence either verbally or on paper. The worst part being, I think, that he didn't even bother to spellcheck. That just . . . that drives me insane. On a syllabus! I feel kinda bad because I know he's foriegn, but his accent is rather muted and he says he's lived in the states for a long time. I also wouldn't have as much grumpy trouble if could actually communicate effectively, and not break into giggling at innapropriate moments, stopping his sentences in the middle and never finishing them, or staring out into space for long periods of time. Perfectly acceptable behavior for an artist in their studio, but awful difficult to *learn* anything from. There are other issues, as well: we'll be working primarily in wood, which is the fussiest fucking material ever for sculpting; a 'C' is considered a *good* grade in his class, and, well, on the petty side, the classroom is ridiculous dank and grey (which is not out of the oridnary for the Fine Arts classrooms . . . don't ask me why, but the entire Fine Arts building is *ridiculously* boring and windowless).

Hopefully, I can find something else to transfer into, though I doubt anything will be available by now. Alas. I shall have to live with one bad class. Woe is me.

Feeling good. Feeling very good. Swear to God that there's something excruciatingly magical in the air right now. Maybe that's just me.

I am actually really, really excited for Chrysalis. I haven't been axcited to go to a party in about a year. The prospect of dancing all night is a very pleasing one.
chantico: (Optimistic)
*pokes head out of hidey hole*

Words have not been coming easily to me this summer, and so I have not been updating a whole lot. Things have rearranged themselves quite throughly in my life. I don't think I'm the same person at all that I was at the beginning of the summer, as uneventful as it seemed to be. So much happened, but all of it underneath the surface, like water working it's way through caves, carving new spaces.

I have something new, and something back, like a ball of energy and power in my solar plexus again.

In terms of daily life, my class schedule this year actually looks pleasing. There exists nothing on my plate that is not directly art or art history related, which pleases me, because if I actually do my wor this semester I should be earning good grades and enjoying myself. I'm not absolutely keen on the history of Public Art class, but it will be an interesting oppurtunity to explore things like grafitti and installation work, which has always piqued my curiosity. Likewise with Sculpture. I actually liked my 3D fundemental the best out of all of the Bootcamp Three (F100, F101, and F102), drawing included. There is something meditative about working very carefully with your hands on something artistic. I am hoping that I'll get to do some more work with clay and plaster, both of which I really liked. They're really tactile, and both substances feel good to work with. Maybe I'll get to do some metal working, too, which would be very very awesome.

I'm most exited about my digital art class, which is also a crash course in dreamweaver and website building; my drawing class, which this time around is actually going to focus on watercolors (whee!), and my Renaissance Florence art history course. SQUEE ITALY. I hope we get a good portion on architecture. I love me some architecture.

My new apartment is hella snazzy, even if it is very small. It looks *nice*. It looks *homey*. I have a *bed*. These are all such wonderful, foriegn things! I think I shall have a small get toegther/food thing/movie watching thing there sometime soon, once I have finished decorating it fully.
chantico: (Exausted)
*groans* I am just now leaving this damnable computer lab, but with the corpse of a thirteen page paper behind me. Joy and hallelujah! All I need to do now is write my bibliography and study for my last test. *swoons* So close!

No, a chilly walk home, and then SLEEEEEEEEEEPPPPP


chantico: (Default)

May 2014

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