Cash scrapped

Close up of mixed media piece featuring scrap of $20 bill

I often find scraps of bills in my outings, worn and torn, discarded to the elements. The detail in currency is amazing, a delicate balance between design and art. I like to incorporate found items into my art as it adds a bit of the unexpected to the pieces.

Artist trading card with the scrap of money from previous image.

Going like 60

Artist trading card in natural tones with black, gold and purple accents

Time is racing by me, I blink and the day is gone. I blink again and the month is half over. I wonder “Am I making progress?”, it can be hard to tell with so few events to differentiate the weeks. I have reached and passed my 60/100 mark, and am in that stretch where it is feeling like a bit of a slog to make something fresh every day. But I manage to get in the flow and do it, and generally like what I have made. Outside of creating these daily artist trading cards I find it harder to see progress. Work is work, chores are chores, and errands are errands. But spring is here and I can see progress in the garden, and that soothes me.

Blameless sameness

Artist trading card “grow your own way” text with vintage photo of young boy against muted patterned background

The halfway mark, which seems impossible, how can that many days have passed? Time still has that slippery quality which has persisted since March of 2020. I am aware that days are passing, yet they seem to add up to nothing in particular. There are few notable occasions with which to mark time. Thursday feels like Friday, Wednesday feels like Tuesday. The blameless sameness I guess it could be called. Here it is early April, yet I can call little of March beyond the routine of work, and even that has no specific days of mention I can recall unless I try really hard. It is good that I undertook the 100 day project so as to at least have something that is new each day even if small. At the end there will be tangible proof that I did something out of the ordinary each day.

As it is April, National Poetry Month, I am enjoying the creative efforts of my poet friends. My own poetry is in a lull right now, I guess I am in gathering mode for future writing. One friend writes prolifically, and asks for titles so as to tailor write poems to challenge himself. They cover the gamut as the titles come from people of all walks, in various situations and moods. I have always enjoyed poetry, and still have many of my childhood poetry books and the poems I scribbled, they are truly awful yet sweet in their childlike way.

As I head into these final 50 days, I am hoping to continue expanding my skills and curiosity to create so really great ATCs. Then I will have 100 of them to do something with, just what I am going to do I am not sure yet! I will likely still feel slightly unmoored, but I know other will feel the same way.

The cost

Mixed media close up with torn piece of $20 bill

Now that the calendar has turned to April there should be a bounce in everyone’s moods. Instead there is a weirdness, an uneven tempo that persists in our days. Let’s be honest, the last 6 years have been filled with enough strangeness to last a lifetime. The current state of affairs in Ukraine have just upped the ante. Today on NPR they had a great interview about a topic I had come across not to long ago about the oddness we seem mired in, the vibe shift that has impacted all of us.

The vibe shift might sound like psychobabble to many, yet another way for slackers to justify their lack of energy. To others it makes perfect sense, explaining the daily disorientation they see and feel. But the very same people who roll their eyes are exhibiting the same vibe shift in their own aggressive, blame laying behavior. Every regular person is experiencing seismic shifts in their lives, losses they didn’t see coming, and anxiety about what the next thing will be that upsets everything. Some respond by behaving immaturely and blaming anyone who doesn’t share their views, others pull back to protect themselves and loved ones, and others try to fight back with kindness and good deeds. it continues to be a tenuous time with no way around it, we have to get through it and hope that better days lie ahead, and that the cost isn’t too great.