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2006-05-21 @ 10:27 p.m.
toes in search of love


After two 8 hour days of art conference I really crashed today. I slept until almost 11 a.m. and then laid around and watched DVDs until almost 3 before I went out to the store. But those two days of art were so worth it.

Saturday was alot easier than Friday. There were a lot less people registering. And I had gotten more sleep, so I was lot less “Land of the Zombie-ish”. Plus things went smoother speaker-wise. Everyone showed up.

I also went to more of our speakers. The first day I hung out with my art buddies for a good part of the day, but then I thought, how stupid. I can hang out with them anytime, but how often do I get to hear lectures by excellent Ivy League art teachers? I certainly never had that luxury when I went to school. I wasn’t allowed to take art classes and I just barely squeaked by with my writing classes. I told my Dad I was studying Journalism in college and I was, but I was also taking as many creative writing courses as I could, since I was way better at creative things than factual things.

I think perhaps the lecture I enjoyed the most was by our local political cartoonist. Besides doing a daily cartoon for our newspaper, his work has been seen in the New Yorker, the Village Voice, Time, Newsweek. My enjoyment was two-fold because not only was he very funny and engaging (always big bonus points in witty’s book -- humorous!)...he was also a cutie! Tall. Dark hair. Dark eyes. He said that whenever people try to draw him as a cartoon character, he always ends up looking like mafia hit man, Jimmy the Mook.

Anyways, he ended up using Charlemagne as the subject for one of his cartoons. And yes, it was soooo incredibly hard to get Charlemagne to volunteer for something like that....NOT! He practically left tire marks on my head. The cartoon turned out pretty funny and since Charlemagne is practically a cartoon character anyway...heh....just kidding “C”. And then he was even trying to get me to volunteer to go up in front of 20 people and have the Cute Cartoonist draw an exaggerated picture of how funny I actually look. Yeah right, like that’s going to happen. I finally had to turn around and give him the death-ray look, so he got our little high school intern girl to go and she giggled throughout the entire thing.

I then had lunch with three of the most unlikely people. I mean we’re all artist in our group, but we don’t normally socialize together, at the same time. I went to lunch with “L” the hippie chick, JS and then “D” a quiet artist guy who does very whimsical artwork. He ended up buying me a soda. Not sure why. But we all couldn’t be more different. We did manage to come up with stuff to talk about. I was in a giggle mood. It was right after the cartoon guy and I was being major-silly. Plus I was angsting about something I can’t reveal. Fortunately Married Guy’s wifie didn’t go on Saturday. It was a relief not having to bump into her every hour or so.

After lunch I did skip one session and chatted with some of my art buddies, all of whom evidently had fixations with fire as kids. One guy said him and his buddies used to put gas into containers, set them ablaze and then kick them down hills. They had to make sure they kicked them before they exploded. He said their Dad couldn’t figure out why there were large burn spots on the lawn. Charlemagne then mentioned his talent for taking flammable liquids into his mouth, spitting them out and setting them aflame as it hit the air in a big burst of flames. Our little 17 year old intern then asked if any of us had ever lit the lint on our socks on fire. She said you just put a match near your sock and there’s a small whoosh as the flame travels up your sock burning off excess lint noogies. They briefly looked to me for a pyromaniac confessional moment, but sadly, I’m afraid of nearly everything, especially if it involves burning and imminent death.

I did take the final class which taught the drawing of feet and hands, something I’m not particularly good at. The teacher was really good and funny. He made it seem really easy, but then he said something that really struck fear into my heart (what doesn’t witty?). He said when he was done lecturing we would....get naked....as in, our feet were going to get naked so we could draw each other’s feet. I mean, I love my feet and think they’re one of my best features and let’s face it, I have a bit of a foot fetish, as in “Be nice to my feet, I’ll be nice to you (wink, wink).” But to show my nekkid feet to a total stranger?? Gulp.

I anxiously waited for the moment for him to say, “Drop those sandals, baby.” because I was sitting amid about 4-5 middle-aged women and for some reason that seemed worse than sitting amid men. I’m not really sure why, and yet when the moment came, I was the first person out of my shoes. Of course I was only wearing sandals. And one woman commented that she was surprised I had nail polish on so early in the season. Like WTF? So I told her I normally go directly from snow boots to sandals and bare feet, because I don’t like shoes, but I do like my toe nails to look pretty. And then I suddenly felt like a total geek saying, “Oh, I like my toe nails to look pretty”, because when I looked down I saw the fugliest collection of angry toes I ever saw. Gah! No wonder they were all wearing shoes and socks. Talk about feeling like a pearl among the swine. I’d definitely want to keep that collection of gnarly, crooked fuglies under wraps too. eep!

So we all set to work drawing each other’s feet. And unfortunately I was still under the influence of the cartoon guy from earlier in the day, so my foot looks like the giant foot from the opening sequence in “Monty Python’s Flying Circus”...



....you know, the one that comes down out of nowhere and squashes everything. And if you really want to have fun, like I did when I was putting color in this in Photoshop, you can even softly hum the music from “Monty Python” and toggle the image up and down and pretend like the giant foot is really animated a’la Terry Gilliam. Its really fun. Go ahead, try it. I can wait....Wasn't that fun?

Anyways, I got bored drawing ladies toes, so I went over to a bunch of men who were drawing each other’s feet, including my animation buddy from Friday. Almost instanteously I felt a sudden dramatic shift in the toe drawing continuum. Because suddenly everyone stopped drawing each other’s feet and looked over and started drawing mine. And what did that do to someone who is turned on when someone gives attention to their feet? Extreme warmth, baby, extreme warmth! Some young Black lad even kindly asked if I could lift up my dress so he could see better. Lawdy! I don’t think I’ve heard that since....like (cough)ever!!!

So it was a little overwhelming and afterwards when I went into the bathroom I was bright red. Sheesh! Guess my engine light came kind of unexpectedly. Anyways, the event ended shortly after that. Our Fearless Art Leader gave a little proclamation thanking everyone who came and then members of the Board. I had to run upstairs and get my artwork off the wall. Our Art Leader had told me that yesterday, during a critique, people had complimented my use of vivid color on the Lennon/Ono painting. I didn’t realize they were going to critique the work hanging on the walls. I’m not really strong enough to hear criticism of my work quite yet though.

Charlemagne did help me carry stuff out to my car, which I thought was nice. At first I was walking and he was yacking and I was loaded down with two paintings, my bag of art supplies and my purse which is heavier than three bowling bags. He finally got a clue that a little short Irish person, who was openly struggling with like 3-4 things might need help. When we got to my car, he gave me the Frenchman’s double kiss. I then asked him if he would take a picture of me with my artwork. Usually I like to get a picture taken with my artwork whenever its hanging in a show, but I never had anyone to take my picture over the two days. So here I am out in the college parking lot with my artwork. The light isn’t really flattering for the artwork, but damn, look at those cute feet peeking out from under my dress!






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