Art School: Break Week 2

Do you remember your school days? Remember how Summer was a great time, and you were always busy? How much fun you had every single day, and how you hated the very thought of going back to school?

Yeah, me neither.

There’s about one more week of my summer left, and I can’t wait to get back to class. I’m not sure if that is bad or good, but it is a thing.

Why good? Well, going back to school will be really interesting. I’ll have new projects to take on, new friends to make, and a chance to see some of my classmates again. I will be busy once again, and driving hard to get things done — and done well — for my instructors. It will be very good to get back to school for all the right reasons.

Why bad? The problem right now is that I am bored and not making progress on the big project I have in front of me. Well, not really bored, I guess. I have things to do to keep me entertained: I read and follow the news. (The clown car that is Republican politics in America is a constant source of horrific fascination these days, particularly this past week.) I have one large(ish) project here at the house that I should be working on, but it’s not simple, not all that interesting, and not fun. I’m still “admiring the problem” as I learned to say somewhere in the past, and I have no concrete plan for it yet. So it sits undone and nagging at me.

Beyond that I am not making any art. Why not? Well, until two weeks ago I was busy with classes, and then I was busy with other projects around the house. Now I am between projects and not full of things I have to get done, but I can’t bring myself to work on new art either. Partly that’s because the stuff I want to do takes space and materials and makes a mess. Can’t do those in this rental. (For example, I don’t think the outlets here will let me run my cheap-o welding rig. It wants 20 amps, not 15. The breakers are all 15 amps, and there are so few of them that the various loads and rooms must be combined in weird ways. As a result I have no clue what is on a given circuit. It’s a small miracle we can run our various computers and other electronics in this place. So no welding.) Besides, I’ll be making art again in just a week or so, once classes start up again.

So for another week I am either supposed to be working on the one big project — a floor fix in the guest bathroom — or, well… what, exactly? That is the problem. I haven’t got a great answer for that. I’d write something, but I have blank page syndrome whenever I think about writing fiction. (Writing these posts is simple. Writing an entirely made up story seems to be something else of late. Sad but true.)

Anyway, that’s how my week is going: little projects done, big project lurking, and no impetus to move forward.

In the grand scheme of things I have to solve this issue. Once I finish school I will not have that driving me for much of the year, and I will need other motivators. They could be art creation, or writing, or even a job I suppose. I’ve solved this issue in the past, and I will do so again. I just don’t think I am going to solve it this week, so right now school can’t get here quickly enough.

In other news…


The overall English course grade is in, and I did very well, as I expected after the final exam. And that wraps up the classes for the summer semester. Design, Art of Canada, and English were all good and interesting. Time well spent, it seems.

This section will be gone in next week’s post. A week later the new classes will make an appearance, so you have that to look forward to, I guess.


  • This week I was happy to learn that a black, female author — N. K. Jemisin — won the Hugo award for best novel for a third year in a row with The Stone Sky. She’s the first person ever to do that, regardless of race or gender. (To be clear — and head off potential pedantry — others have won Best Novel three times, but not three in a row.) The link below includes a video of her acceptance speech in it. It’s only a few minutes long and I recommend you watch it. The Hugo awards have had some weird things going on in the last few years, and despite them she achieved this amazing feat. Seeing her at that podium, telling it like it is, it’s so easy to realize just how much representation in all areas matters. People of colour need to see themselves on TV, in the movies, and — yes — winning awards for writing. It’s their world too, and I am happy to share it with them. Their success does not make my life any worse. Instead it makes everyone’s life greater. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go buy a book.
  • The usual index of art school posts and other things here on Medium, because Medium didn’t get the ordering right when I imported posts from somewhere else, and I can’t figure out how to fix it.


BC is smothered in smoke from wildland fires of late. The air quality is abominable, and every photo looks as if it was taken during a foggy day when in reality it’s smoke from far off fires mucking with the view. Between that and the fact that I haven’t had to get out much, I haven’t taken many pictures this past week. But I will share this one, taken at the convention centre downtown:

Digital Orca, by Douglas Coupeland.

I’ve heard this called the “pixelated orca” and the “eight bit orca”, but the real title is Digital Orca. It’s quite large, and it is in the same general area as the 2010 Olympic Cauldron in downtown.

And In Conclusion…

Idris Elba or Wallace Shawn?

Written by

Sculptor/Artist. Former programmer. Former volunteer firefighter. Former fencer. Weirdest resume on the planet, I suspect.

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