Tag reading

19 posts

On Books and Bees

I went to the library and found all the best fairy books in the kids section. I came home with one called the Faerie Door and I’m almost done with it. My favorite thing about libraries is that you can just sit there and read and no one bothers you and then you can bring the book home and continue to read it because you can’t pull yourself away. I think the kids section is the best part of the library because all the most fantastical stories are there – the authors don’t have to prove themselves to the adult world and they can be as imaginative and wondrous as they please, and this is why I mostly read YA books.

The kids section is the best part of the library

A photo posted by Kiery King (@kiery28) on


My particular library branch is small, and the dvd and adult sections don’t have a lot in my particular interests, but the teen section is what really stole my heart. They had so many resources – I can tell that my library actually cares about the youth that frequent it and I was trying hard not to cry even though I’m years removed from teenagehood. It would have meant so much to me if my library had emergency numbers, LGBTQ resources, and books dedicated to assuring me that I am indeed okay.
There’s this fiction book, called stronger than you know, about an abused homeschooled girl with PTSD who is rescued from her family, lives with her aunt and uncle and is trying to brave the world. I couldn’t bring myself to read more than the first page without being overcome and also wanting to leave it there for the inevitable person who’d need it after I left.

So I came home with a book I’ve barely been able to put down. I’ll probably finish it tonight and then drop it off at the library before going to explore a waterfall tomorrow. Yesterday I watched some bees pollinate lavender while waiting for the bus and taking in the breeze. I’m not sure how much I like being disconnected from twitter and facebook – half of me wishes I were all the time, and the other half knows it’s not good to be in a bubble cut off from the world forever, either – and the fact is, twitter is a better place for news than the news. I can also easily get lost in my head, and need a way out – sometimes it’s pleasant, a lot of times…..it’s not. I get lost in remembering things my parents said and did and I get upset with little to distract me.
I think the moral of the story is, I need to consciously remember to watch the bees, take in the air, take breaks, but also consciously live outside my head, and pay attention to the world.
Happier? no, less angry, maybe. Calmer? yes. More productive? somewhat. I just need to listen to myself.

Fantasy and SciFi Book List

To read or finish in no particular order:

Inheritance Circle: Eldest, Brisingr, Inheritance
Lord of The Rings (finish)
The Hobbit
Game of Thrones (finish)
Artemis Fowl
Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy
Enders Game
1984 (finish)
Name of the Wind
The Sandman
The Mists of Avalon
Rangers Apprentice
Inkheart
Leviathan Wakes
Faery Rebels

I’d like to complete this list by next year and maybe start reading some Vaginal Fantasy books with the club. 😉 I think that finishing the books I have on hand, and The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland In A Ship Of Her Own Making is the first order of business, and then more trips to the library! I haven’t been there in a long time and I miss it.

Future/Recommendations list:

Redshirts
Old Man’s War series
Snowcrash
Ready Player One

The Similarion
Dragonriders of Pern
Legend of Drizzt

brb reading
 

Well, you know, plans…

I had a list, right? I know it’s only been a week, but for some reason it seems to be a list of I’m-going-to-do-the-ones-that-involve-mail-but-maybe-not-anything-else instead. Which is great, actually, because I’ve accomplished several other big things since writing that list.

  • Launched the Freeport Creative Arts website! (check it out, it’s epic)
  • Delivered book to Library
  • Leveled to 83 in WoW and now I’m in the Maelstrom.
  • Posted “The Outbreak” weekly – writing each part as I go is really fun.
  • Discovered potential client(s) for websites
  • Wrote 10th Episode of KG (and filming today)
  • Primed warmachine army
  • Finished the red Art in Action book
  • Played with Javascript and a command-line environment via Codeacademy
  • Picked out paintings to send to my brother
  • Packaged the prize for the KieryGeek giveaway

Prize packaged!

Entertainment

Every so often art, technology, and entertainment are made to be some kind of new evil. Articles, emails, and teachings are produced – mocking and and devaluing the art and the industry that is a large part of our world. Many good things have fallen victim to this, and many people (myself included) have spent years being mislead by organizations with a specific agenda. Organizations that use lies, misinformation, and bad reporting to keep everyone from engaging in something they personally feel is not worth engaging in.
They want to live in a world where everything is monitored, judged, and valued on a scale of what messages a given story contains, how it fits into the company’s worldview, and if there is anything that could remotely be imperfect (or above G). A lot of parents seem to want this for their children too, and thus buy into the world that these organizations purport. It comes from a place of love, naturally – that weird protective instinct all parents seem to inherit and have to try very hard not to over-do.
The problem is, that so much focus is going into the “value” as rigidly defined by various organizations that the real value and the point of being entertained is lost. A large part, I believe, is due to the fact that the idea of entertainment ala Focus on the Family, The American Family Association, and others, is not really considered to have any value at all.
The idea of relaxing, and watching (or listening, or looking at, or playing) something for no reason other than it is interesting and appeals to you just doesn’t even compute. Because for something to have value in my ex-world, there has to be a higher reason. I had to learn to listen to music, because I thought the only value in song was lyrics. I learned to appreciate a good story, because I, like many others, was taught to believe that movies and books carried secret messages and we had to be careful to expose ourselves to only “the good ones” so we wouldn’t be influenced wrongly.
This adds a lot of work to being entertained that doesn’t need to be there. Being entertained is not a mental exercise, it’s a connection; the best things connect to you on a deeper level and that’s when art is created.
What attracts you, or what “messages” you find, may be the things that you were reaching for inside. Other people may not see that, or may find things they needed; more might just enjoy it for the quality of the sound, the stage, the storytelling, and find nothing deeper. Are any of these wrong?
Do people have to find the same thing that stirred within you when you read Lord of the Rings for it to count? I don’t think so, I don’t think anyone really thinks so.
This is what is so powerful about the art of entertainment: when done well, people from all walks of life can appreciate it on so many levels – each one just as valid as the next.
What did I do? I ever so reluctantly found good stories, and fell in love with them; not because of any scale of value, but because the stories were good. Which opened up a wonderful world that I had missed before. If you want to be a writer, an artist, or a storyteller, it helps to appreciate the art of being entertained, develop your unique taste,  and find the things that inspire you by exposing yourself to new things.
Read the kind of stories you want to write, watch the movies you hope to create, listen to the music you want compose – then expose yourself to the opposite. Be entertained for the sake of being entertained and appreciate the art and the effort that goes into it.

Keep Calm and Watch BBC
(From a tumblr that changed it's url - formerly hmbg.tumblr.com)

When the internet is boring

It’s time to do something else. I should do that more often really. Last night I got bored, and after staring blankly at my screen hoping for something interesting, I went into my [newly re-arranged, and significantly warmer – who knew keeping the bed off the baseboards would allow the heat to flow?] bedroom and drew some ideas to color my white space.

brainstorming ideas
Brainstorm

Now that I have…10 possibilites I can decide which one I’d like to paint and hang over our bed.
arrangement
Arrangement

The bed and the painting will end up being the focal point – the inspiration picture and the curtains on the window and over the closet will help tie everything together. And I’m going to refinish the nightstand that I temporarily put a scarf over. O:)
Anyway, after brainstorming I decided to finally just read. I started this book, Spellwright, a few months ago and got really busy and stopped reading it. Mostly because I can’t put books down very easily, so I stuck to reading comics while I was working so I wouldn’t stay up all night reading. I loved reading the comics too, but I’ve really really wanted to get back to Spellwright and just never got around to it…until last night. It was wonderful, and now I’m halfway through and can’t wait to get back into it.

Thanks Mr. Marketing Book

Yesterday I spent the afternoon reading the most boring (and it’s not that boring) of the books from my most recent library trip. Low Budget Marketing For Small Businesses which talked a lot about websites and the internet (obviously). The book is a little old (2003) but I figured some ideas would probably help. Although, I kind of smiled to the Generation Y references because well, that’s my generation, haha (as I was like, 12 at the time the book was published). #notveryold. Still it has ben helpful and even though I won’t be buying words and can tweak my website by myself for the most part (and what I can’t do, I can ask my husband or other friends to help with, because we’re all a bunch of geeks) it helped with some ideas on how to fix my current website.
Every so often I go on this completely re-do everything spree, and over the last 2 years I think I’ve alternated between blog-front and static pages multiple times (at the moment, I’m back to static page, but with blog posts featured). I’ve also wanted it to look a little bit more…me. I like clean websites but I also like artsy ones. I think the design I came up with last night works pretty well for the present and seems to balance the two. Light shades of polkadots with my balloon logo. I thought about adding a fairy, because that’s my etsy logo, but it looked too crowded.
This is all just a work in progress, so please stay patient, as I’ll probably be changing things more later. O:)
Anyway, the most helpful tidbit I’ve gotten so far from the book was the who’s-your-target-worksheet. And I haven’t filled it out yet, but I’ve been thinking on it, and launched an experiment yesterday also, which, you would have seen if you follow me on twitter (free shipping code). However, I conveniently added my twitter accounts (and other things) to my sidebar, if you’d like to follow and find the code and use it in my etsy store.
Anyway, this latest round of changes goes to the marketing book. Thanks, Mr. Book! I’ll go back to reading now.

Library l00t

I went to the library today and got on a book binge. I brought back so many books that I thought I was going to have to put some back, and bought a library bag when I realized that there probably wasn’t much of a book limit and my 6 (I really can count) books probably wasn’t the most they’d checked out at a time. I had the brilliant idea to leave my backpack at home and didn’t really want to carry all the (heavy) books in a plastic bag anyway.

Although, there were so many more books that I could have checked out…but I figured I’d probably better wait to give myself a chance to get through all the others. Three weeks really isn’t that long. O:)

So those are my school books for the time being. A screenplay, a book on marketing, a book on Acrylic Technique (finally!) and 3 fantasy books to inspire me. I also did my very first inter-library loan (that I remember, anyway). iPhones are sooo handy, because I had the book on goodreads and all the information I needed about the book I wanted (100 things every designer should know about people) right there which made the librarian happy. So now all I need to do, is scan all my current library books into my to-read queue on the goodreads app on my phone, readjust to the yellow light of incandescent bulbs (we got some new lights in with daylight-esque fluorescents which I’m going to sit by all winter) and I’ll be good to go. 😀

Everyone Is An Artist

(or what I learned from The Everyday Work of Art)
I started thinking about this a while ago after reading The Everyday Work Of Art  and it kinda stuck out. I’ve heard a lot of people say “I’m just not artistic”, and I spent years telling myself the same thing. “I can’t draw”, “I’m not very artistic”, “I don’t have much artistic talent at all”, “I can’t sing” I can’t, I can’t, I don’t, I’m not. Years I told myself this, believed this, and only recently came to realize that all of it was lies. I *am* artistic, and even when I thought I wasn’t artistic, I was still making art.
Most people think that art only encompasses things like painting, theater, singing, music, dancing – these are the things that we leave to those with talent, we revere it and save our experience with it for special occasions. Art is something we visit on stage or at a museum when we’re on vacation or during the holidays.
Art is something that we play at in churches while volunteering in the children’s production or helping with the easter cantata (who invented that word anyway?). But it’s not something that most of us take seriously unless we’re one of the “few” with talent.
Art is for children, who run around putting on imaginary plays and believe their circles spread across a page are accurate depictions of people. Most of us leave art in childhood and admire those who figured out how to make it work for them.
The truth is, though, everyone is an artist regardless of how much talent we think we have – regardless of our ability or inability to draw or carry a tune.
Everyone is an artist because art is not a finished product; art is a verb and not a noun.
The passion and joy and wonder that you experience when you do something you love to do – that is art, even if you wouldn’t label it that way.
Writing, building, plumbing, making pizza, organizing, or mastering a game – art is not the end product, but the process and enjoyment and journey you take to get there. Art is not something that ends when the work is done, because it’s a way of living, of feeling, and viewing the world and life around you.
The yearning that we feel that compels us to create, and the excitement and passion we follow that with, is the work of art. When I finish my film or my next painting, my art will not be done, because art is made in journeying and it never really ends – even if you block it out or ignore it for years on end, it’s still there, and you’ll look back and realize that all this time you’ve been creative without realizing it. I did. 🙂

Ding!

Fun Stuff

I hit level 75 in WoW today, finally! I’ve been super super awful about playing lately, so today I decided to just do that instead of sitting at my computer debating about doing that, story boarding, or making the bed and spending the whole time flicking through facebook, etsy, pinterest, and random blogs until I came to a conclusion. Yeah, that’s usually what happens when I can’t decide what to do next.
Also, our new, bigger, muslin green-screen and clamps and lens cleaner came in today! so I expect that I’ll be spending the evening playing with the green screen and maybe doing some more storyboarding.

Etsy

Yesterday I launched the 2nd painting in my Thing-A-Week promo. So far it’s all watercolors that I’ve painted before and wasn’t sure about listing. I’ve been wanting to list them, but just didn’t know how to introduce them, but then I started the Thing-A-Week, and it just seemed perfect, so this weeks watercolor painting is Blue Shadows.

 New Look

You might have noticed, also, that I changed some things on the front page. I created a logo, favicon, and updated the banner. I also redesigned my etsy banner and profile images – finally. Last night I was finally able to get a copy of Fireworks CS3 running on my macbook pro. I’ve been trying for ages but it never actually worked – until last night. So I spent all evening updating my banners and such and enjoying playing with that again. It looks sooooo much better than before.

Reading

I finished Faerie Wars the other day and started The Last Unicorn. Faerie wars was amazing and I can’t wait to get the other books from the library. I’m a little over half-way through The Last Unicorn, and at first it wasn’t as interesting, but then I ended up spending all of yesterday afternoon glued to the pages. I have a lot of ideas and new images for when I start painting again. I’ve taken a break, unintentionally – moving furniture around has some of my painting-ness a little discombobulated. I need to find another corner for my easel.
 

Fairy Stories

It’s been a while since I’ve read a book that was incredibly hard to put down. I started reading Faerie Wars last night and read it after I woke up/ate lunch and have had a really hard time stopping. I’m really late to the discovery of fantasy as I never really had much of a taste or imagination for it growing up, but now I absolutely love it.
I was hoping that reading some fantasy books would help me get some visual ideas and some fairy lore and generally keep me involved and inspired and it has. It’s a great feeling to be reading a story again, immersed in another world. Sometimes I forget how much I miss it. My story-reading has sort of failed the last few years, but I think I might need to pick it back up again, because what’s life without taking a journey through pages?