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18 in 18

I’ve enjoyed this challenge because it has made me move out of the usual rut; it has brought options to the front of my mind. Having said that, I was surprised at the progress I have made in some areas. So, this is what I have been up to:

Write 18 letters

I am up to 13. Only 5 more to the end of the year. Should be able to manage that.

Sketch Outdoors 17 times

Another 13. Luckily I got outdoors to sketch during the recent trip to Menindee, in the Grampians, at Balranald and at the camping ground in Copi Hollow. I must remember to pack my sketchbook next time I am out and about….and then take it out and sketch!

Visit 16 different places

This hasn’t pushed me in the way that I thought it would. I wanted to extend myself to move away from the usual. I can tick off 12, and most of the recent ones are from the trip to Brisbane (Brisbane Museum, the Town Hall) and the Balranald Discovery Centre (there’s a good coffee shop there too). I haven’t pushed myself in Melbourne. So the next few months need to be full of interesting adventures. The most interesting of the recent crop was to visit General McArthur’s suite of offices in Brisbane. It was his headquarters in WW2, and full of fascinating information about him, and Brisbane during the war. Worth a visit if you are headed that way.

Upload 15 paintings to Etsy

I was in a hiatus for quite a while with listing new things in the shop. I was making decisions about the website, and wondering whether I was going to keep the shop or sell via the website. There wasn’t a lot of activity, and so I wasn’t motivated to list. Of course we all know that activity begets activity, so not listing helped that spiral. But that’s a thought for another day. I made the decision, which maybe only medium term, to keep the store and link from the website to the shop.

Recently I have listed

and there are more in the pipeline. That’s 8 for the year.

[If you would like to keep up with what I am putting into the shop, and sometimes being the first to know, you can simply sign up for the letter from my studio. It’s free, and you even get a feather drawing.]

Walked in 14 different places

I walk every day, and even the familiar walks are interesting and constantly showing me new things. However I enjoy walking in different places too. So far I have chalked up 11 different places.

One of these was a bit of a mistake. The Fella recently bought a new car, with all the bells and whistles, including a sat nav. Not something we have used before. We were heading off to walk in the Werribee Gorge, so I put the info into the sat nav and followed instructions. We were bemused when it took us out along the Ballarat Road to Bacchus Marsh, quite a few kilometres away from Werribee. I had plunged in ‘West Werribee Gorge’, not realising I had other options. Not to worry, we still had a nice walk in the bush, and I am still to walk in the Werribee Gorge!

Go to watch 13 movies 

Up to 11! Yay!

Since I last wrote I have seen:

  • I am Tonya
  • Finding their feet
  • Death of Stalin
  • Eulogy
  • The seagull
  • and watched Brooklyn on TV

Visited 12 galleries

7 galleries so far, with a couple of ones in Brisbane. Their art gallery is a very fine one. They have ranged from a quilt exhibition in Lilydale, way out to the east of me in Melbourne, through an inner suburban one showing John Wolseley’s sublime work, to a small gallery in West Footscray (much closer to me!) exhibiting Jessie Deane’s meticulous tapestries.

Plant 11 native plants

Languishing, I am afraid. Only two planted for the year. Maybe this spring…….

Read 10 biographies or memoirs

Another one that is languishing ~ only 4. It’s not that I don’t read, it’s that I haven’t been thinking about choosing memoirs from the library. The last one was Ann Patchett’s “This is the story of a happy marriage”.

Find 9 different styles/pieces of music

6 out of 9…not bad.

Two of the latest ones are from concerts organised by my sister. (I often mention the upcoming concerts in the letter from my studio. 😉) Michael Kieran Harvey played some wonderful piano music, including a piece composed by Eve Duncan. I was delighted by the compositions of Calvin Bowman (who is playing at the next concert), especially the ones of Walter de la Mare’s poems. They touched a chord!

Bake 8 cakes or biscuits

This wasn’t the best choice, as I have been trying to keep away from sugary things! Only 2 cakes. Not sure if that is a good or a bad result! I’m going to bake this weekend….and give it away ☺️.

Paint with other people 7 times

Still sitting on 2 too. Life gets so busy for all of us.

Clean out 6 cupboards or drawers

I am slowly working my way through the boxes of books I had in storage. It’s a slow process, as I want to reread many of them before I make the decision to keep or throw! But, aside from that, which I am not counting, I have cleaned the mantlepiece in the studio, sorted out and organised my paintings and sorted my summer clothes. Halfway there, but sooooo much more I could attack!

Make 5 things for other people

Tick off 4!! Since last time I have made beeswax wraps with Mary, crocheted a rug to give to the old folks’ home and crocheted a rug for Gerry. I may even over-achieve on this one!

Have 4 short trips away

3 out of 4, so on track, but nothing since I wrote last.

Make 3 garments

1 out of the 3. In May I knitted a tunic top for myself. I was so determined to make it work that I pulled it out and reknitted it. Can I count it as two garments 😄 ?

And I have some material to make up a dress, which I am looking forward to creating next week. So next time I write I will have two made…..well, if all goes according to plan.

Go for 2 long trips

✔️ Big tick for this one, as I have been on two, to Brisbane with my Mum in August, and caravanning with the Fella over September. Go Me!!

Have one Exhibition Create a website

Yep, I changed this one. Both are designed to showcase my art, and to sell, of course. It made sense to me to change.

The website has been up and running for a month or two now. Jump over and check it out. Or jump over to let the Google bots know there is activity on the site 😘. The more clicks and searches the better. I am blogging there as well as here, but the posts are different. I’ll explain more in another post.

It’s a work in progress, and always be. Static sites are not good. But I can proclaim it as something that I have achieved this year.

What’s your biggest achievement so far?

So, overall scorecard? Going well, with a few more adventures to come over the next few months.

Remember, to find out more about my art work, sign up for the letter from my studio.

 

Categories
Odds and Ends

18 in 18

This year I am intending to broaden out my horizons by doing different things. You can check out the list in the original post. They are not wildly adventurous things ~ I am not intending to do 9 different types of extreme sports. In fact sport of any stripe doesn’t get a mention! The intention was to extend the range of activities that I already do, to make me think outside the box.

And that’s how it turned out in January. Here’s an update of what I have crossed off the list so far.

I’ve had one (out of four) short trips away, to stay at the delightful, but busy, seaside town of Lorne, along the Great Ocean Road. Magnificent views, and very steep hills!

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I’ve made one (out of five) things for other people. My friend Denise and I had a delightful afternoon making cushion covers for her dining chairs. My help was also her Christmas present 😊

It has been rather hot to have the oven on, but I did get a plum cake cooked. That’s one cake (out of 8) cooked. Looks fancy with the icing sugar, and it tasted okay too.

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Looking for music has made me aware of the music around me. I have found one and have leads I wish to follow up, to make up my nine for the year. I may even surpass my target. Any suggestions? Darlingside was the group I came upon. I love the fiddle mandolin they use. If you like them too, do read about them on their website. It made me smile.

I am a fifth of the way through reading ten biographies or memoirs. But that’s not surprising, I am an avid reader. (I am going to post about my favourite books from 2017, hopefully before 2018 ends!)

Woman on the mountain by Sharon Munro was one of those books you read at a holiday home. The title sums it up….she lives an isolated, sustainable life on a mountain in the Australian Alps. She writes charmingly about the wild life around her, including the snakes, about bushfires and solar panels and how she got to the mountain in the first place.

In Four quarters of light Brian Keenan was searching during his four months of travel through Alaska for an answer to how wilderness impacts on people, especially their inner life. What does wilderness teach us about ourselves?

My intention when I decided to visit 12 art galleries and exhibitions during the year was to extend my knowledge of galleries, with an eye to finding some that might want me to exhibit. The two that I have visited aren’t new ones, but, hey, I make the rules, I can break the rules. I went to the Incinerator Gallery to see an exhibition of quilts put on by the Essendon Quilters, a local quitting group. The was other Romancing the Skull at the Art Gallery of Ballarat. I blogged about it here.

I am on track for movies ~ two out of 13. 3 billboards outside Ebbing Missouri and The Post. Both highly recommended.

The hills in Lorne were certainly different places to walk, and I also walked around Carlton admiring the terrace houses and then to Royal Park. So two out of 14 done. Wth this category I want to explore new places, the places that I have thought “I must go and walk around there” but never quite made it. I hope to knock a few (well, 12 more!) off the list this year.

Visiting 16 different places is another one to make me go beyond what I know. So I took the 96 tram to St Kilda. Not a big adventure, but now I know what the houses that I see so often from the car look like from behind.

Sketching outdoors can make you feel rather exposed as passerbys can, and do, look and comment. Usually it’s positive, like the guy in the coffee shop who said “You’re an artist!” I hope I got the punctuation right and he wasn’t saying “You’re an artist???” So, to have sketched in public three times is an achievement. I did some sketches down at Lorne, once in a cafe and then with my friend Janey at the NGV, along with about 100 other people! They were all following the lead of the artist while Janey and I did our own thing. I found this imperious chap.

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Lastly, my letter writing. I sent off some postcards just before New Year, so I am not counting those. However, I have sent off 3 cards and letters, only 15 more to go. 💌

So, off to a good start. Now to keep up the moment and not let these things drown in the sea of ordinary life. How are your goals going? Still active or going under?!

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