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  • Angela Micheli Otwell

The Rest of 2022

A lot of my organizational ideas and plans got set aside because I got very, very busy with "real" work (i.e., not the things that should be done when things are slower), but it lasted so long that maybe I should reevaluate my priorities. I'm familiar with the concept of the "tyranny of the urgent," but I also don't want to spend so much time on planning/organization that I don't get any real work done. I suspect the balance is as illusory as a work/life balance seems to be. I do have a few things to share.

I made up my own rules for Inktober and completed it. My only aim was to complete 31 pen drawings by the end of October, and I did. I didn't use a predetermined prompt list, but I did use Scavenger Hunt prompts. So all of my drawings were from life for the Scavenger Hunt. Also, I didn't pre-sketch with a pencil, just went straight in with a pen. So these drawings were good practice because they were from life (encouraging good observational skills), because I didn't use pencil/eraser (encouraging accurate drawing), and for practicing values, since they're monochromatic. They're not all worth sharing necessarily. I drew a kitchen timer, ink bottle, paper clip, etc., just the things around me and nothing very exciting.

In September, I did my first little oil painting attempts, and I found the medium pretty frustrating. I didn't get back to it to try again until November. I'm not sure I can say which of my paintings are finished. I guess there are two I'm ready to share as "complete." I'm intrigued, and I plan to keep painting. (These are snapshots of the oil paintings; I'll get higher quality images as needed. I'll probably upload the traffic cone and nuts and bolts as stock images.)

I kept playing with AI since the last time I posted. It's become really controversial, which I think is unfortunate. It's no longer a conversation I want to participate in, although I'm happy to answer questions. I will keep using AI as a tool when it is useful to me, but really traditional art materials are infinitely more versatile and interesting.

I do find AI to be "useful" when I'm itching to make something, and I just don't have the time. I can work on non-art work on one monitor and generate images on the other, just experimenting with ideas. It doesn't make a mess, and it's easier than switching back and forth between computer and easel. In addition, I have fractal software that I play with the same way. Both are quick ways to generate tons of images, and they scratch that creative itch that I get after a few days of not making anything. (Actually, it's closer to misery than an itch. Creative activity seems to be essential to my well being.) Also, I can use AI and fractal software more easily when I'm traveling.

I put a few of those images (one fractal and three AI images) on Redbubble products recently.

I think that's about all I have to share for 2022. I got some art-related Christmas presents already, and I look forward to making more art in 2023!

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I'm still making changes to this website. I'm aware there are some problems with the new gallery page, but I have to move on to other projects right now. I'll try to get back to it soon. In other news

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