Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Oh the many TidBites of September!

September was crazy insanely busy.
So much so, that now it's  October. But that's okay. October is superior!
Shrimping was pretty much the same damn thing...over and over and over. I did receive a few reprieves.  Some baby rougheyes for example. When identifying a new species of rockfish, you look at the headspine count.  The photo below shows the headspines of a juvenile Rougheye Rockfish. The count is one of the first steps in narrowing down the ID. This photo you can see all eight spines which is unusual (for me off Oregon) since many species are lacking HS 6.
Nerd alert over.
Tidbit 1: Sketching with pencil on Rite in the Rain paper.
 It (Rite n Rain) doesn't take to erasing, much like pen. So I went about drawing in a zentangle type of fashion. I was pretty proud that I didn't get all eraser happy. My first trip I read the whole third novel of Diana Gabaldon's. This was my second week at sea.

It got a little morbid when I saw the eye balls, but I still really like it.
Tidbit2: Field sketching cont.
This is a shiner surf perch. It's scales were odd to attempt being more horizontal in layout then grid-like.


TidBite1Oceanic Advent Calendar. (fully lacking any actual religious affiliation.)
Last year I saw an awesome calendar on the Pinterest.(yep) Each day is an ornament; that is placed an a mini tree.  Their version was all white, and classic, and beautiful. My ornaments are all going to be beaded what-nots with a marine theme. Obviously.
I was making a frame to hang these loverly jute bags (a garland from Michael's from last season) (which will contain the ornaments) but then recently came across this fantastical wood frame instead. So the last frame is scrapped, hard. In the mean time, I'd made two said ornaments then moved my house and lost everything into packing. Well, shortly after I bought the frame, my bead pieces reappeared! So this morning, I made two more! ...only 21 days, worth of what equates to single earrings, to go. Gah.

TidBite2: Knitting!

Really this is making me look like I've got Christmas on the brain. I'm knitting a baby hat for a to-be-born-in-December fetus. Of which I know not the gender. Variegated grey for the win! It's father is a fisherman. It only made sense.

TidBite3: Stamp carving
I started working on some Halloween and Christmas stamps for my coming postcards! I'm way to stoked about the holidays...

Happy Tidbitting!

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Field sketching

Creature Feature Week.

I was out observing on a shrimp deck this week, and a bar in their grate excluder was busted out. As a result I got to see some larger critters for the first time in a few months. The monotony of seeing the same damn thing week after week gets old. I don't know how some people do that. BUT

Tidbit 1: Creature feature!
Above: Yellowtail Rockfish Represent. This is a an average size fish. Way the eF too large for a shrimp trawl when excluders are functioning properly.
Below: A middle sized Spiny dogfish shark. He was feeling picturesque.

Tidbit 2: Field sketching

Field sketches are the best kind of practice. You don't have all day, the critter is either moving or decaying (seriously, fish drying out is deeply irritating.) There is a need for speed, of which I am a work in progress.

Below is a Dwarf Wrymouth (which was ironically much harder to draw then the Pink shrimp below it). Notice my excessive erasing. Rite-in-the-rain paper doesn't take to erasing for crap. The dude looks a little cartoony, which is unfortunate. But, wrymouths are goofy anyway. I could see the striation of the muscle tissue beneath the skin, as these guys dont' have scales, which is what that weird cross hatching is about. They are actually very smooth and rubbery looking. My representation is...lacking.
Below, the second head sketch is a better representation of the extreme oddity that the wrymouth is.
These folks are drawn to size.  
Meet the Intact version of your tiny salad shrimps.
I've always wanted to try my hand at a little shrimpy. But I never think to save one aside. I found a strangely intact critter on the deck after we were done and cleaned up. Segmented bodies are easier to draw as there are a lot of separate pieces to tease apart which can be sized against each other . Unlike a smooth fish which is one Long piece. It causes a proportional nightmare ( in my world )when visually trying to down-size it, like the Pollock below, to get it on the blasted page.

The Pollock was drawn on Dura-rite "paper" which is actually the far superior version of Rite-in-the-rain. I was recently in Powell's in Portland and saw a miniscule Dura-rite pad to buy. It was dumbly small. Expensive too. So that didn't go down. It's straight-up smooth plastic that erases like a dream when wet. This is a NMFS Spp ID sheet, so I cut off the verbiage. But this "paper" is what we use on deck so as not to ruin our raw data while working.
Now if only I could get my hands on a ream of 8x12 blank Dura-rite. A lady can dream...

I'm going out on the same vessel tomorrow. Hopefully we'll see some more interesting kids.

Happy Tidbitting!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Tidbit Reboot!

Tibit Reboot!

Mid August I had the opportunity to attend the national American Fisheries Society conference. It was all pretty amazing. I met a pretty rad fellow observer from the north pacific who, by way of her awesomeness has spurred me on to reboot some art regularity. Her artistic fancies veer towards filmography and she mentioned she was conducting a clip a day as an exercise. Proof that any medium can have a one-a-day exercise to spur creativity.

In the spirit I've been doing some painting and graphite drawing. Alas the painting is not quite there yet...but paint is that way. I've been doing various things off and on

But I busted out the sketch book while I loitered on the Eddie and Rod while they repaired an alternator.

Tidbit Notebook rite-in-the-rain style
This is a ...rendition... of the E&R Shrimp starboard door system.


California sea lions. Heinous, loud, barking and brown. But the more the merrier when trying to draw and animal in action.
A really bad version of a boat sitting in dock. I don't ever draw...or try to draw boats. The Kylie Lynn is actually a really long and slender vessel. This, mmm...squatty version, is not the kylie lynn.
Tibit2: Creature feature! Flatfish edition

 Above from top to bottom is a Flathead sole, Slender sole, and Rex sole. These are all common bottom fish of the pacific northwest. Rex are a moderate part of the groundfish fishery while slender and typically flathead are just bycatch. 

Hopefully I'll have some paintings done soon. I've got one I've been working on for the last three weeks. Just today I painted fabric...sort of. Hand dyed fabric craft day with the ma in Eugene!
I lurv it!
happy tidbitting

Friday, August 29, 2014

From Boat too Bay too Stoop.

Good day 

Meet Mr. Octopus. He and I met on the 15th. We became long lost friends before he had to get back to his dark rock, at 70ish fathoms, to nap.
Tidbit: A day at Sunset Bay

This month I actually got some field drawing in. I need to force that more often. I'm so lazy though. I also discovered that the 360 degree option on my camera has a 120 degree suboption. Meet the left 120 degrees of Sunset bay in Charleston.

Part of my problems with field drawing is 'what do i freaking draw that's simple enough for me not to hang?'
This time, I just picked things and went for it. Que feather, flock of devil birds, and some anemones.
Drawing birds while they're in flock-mode is now officially the only way I can fathom to start sketching birds. They're  twitchy, but more then 5 and you'll find a different bird in the exact same position as the original. 

Secondly, I'm not really a landscape girl. But since I was tidepool deep, I figured why not go for the gold. Distance between objects left something to be desired. I guess that falls under practice.

 Tidbit: Experimentation
I saw a pic on the interweb and thought...drawing? Tattoo? Who knows. Yesterday's destractifications.

 And below is from today. I am over "Summer". Therefore, in my world I have declared it October. I'm pretty sure forest rolled his eyes over the phone at yesterday's decleration.
  Yesterday and today I concocted pumpkin spice coffee. Today I cleaned a corner in my living room to put up a fallish-halloweeny quilt and therefore had to dig/move/touch every piece of art supply that was in my way. Pastels (which I never know what i'm doing with) met a lovely pad of black Strathmore Artagain drawing paper which I've likely owned for 2 years and not tapped yet. I have an art hoarding condition.

Random Aside:
 Before I met Mr. octopus, there was a lovely sunset. What up. No filter. One of my favorite aspects to this job.

A juvenile YellowEye Rocfish (Sebastes ruberrimus) which I was equally super excited and sad to see. They are under the overfished category. But they're gorgeous fish. As babies they're bright red and orange and slowly change to bright yellow as they age, loosing their stripes and darkness in their fins. Almost all the rockfish species in our area don't have major changes in there physical markings like loosing stripes from juvi to adult sizes.
I might have gotten a little fancy with
TidBite: Hurray for scarf completion! My newest  favorite accessory. (which isn't much of a list)
...for a photo, it oddly looked best against my nasty cement steps. Yay grey. I guess.

Photo Bomb Post! 
Happy Tidbitting

Thursday, July 31, 2014

TidBite of Yarn

As intended. 
A TidBite of Yarn.

A few months (probably quite a few months now) I discovered the honeycomb knit pattern. I've perchance become obsessed since them. To claim that I purely read the pattern and whipped it out, and didn't watch every possible youtube video known to humanity to figure out said pattern, might be considered a lie. Really, I can't read. That is... I can't read Knitting patterns. The acronyms make me want to forcibly throw things.
Insert If you knit, you likely already know about this gem. I believe a friend of mine ran across the rainbow comb on the Pinterest where I first became infatuated. Know that this friend eats advanced patterns for breakfast. The glorious rainbow was tracked to Ravelry where I let the cosmos know that I needed to have a rainbow honeycomb...thing.
The pattern is for a baby blanket. Usually there is a red flag there. In this case the word "Blanket"(aka creation never to be finished ever.Never never ever.) But honestly, I didn't really care. The rainbow spoke to me. It told me to go to the yarn store immediately and spend an absurd amount of money on every color of it's existence. Obviously I couldn't refuse.

Epic personal recreation below.
I know! 
The pattern is so easy once you memorize it. Which takes exactly 4 combs to do. Cakesauce.
Apparently I'm not one of those people who hates changing colors every 30 seconds. It's what kept me going. Especially after the dumb amount of blues and purples that i bought. WHICH I LOVE.

Anyway, it's not done. It's fate is to become a bag. A relatively large bag. I intend to line the beast with fabric to give it some body then sport it. Boom. This could take another  year or two. No rush. 
TidBite. -deep breath-
But I heart the pattern so much, partially due to it's semi monotonousness and partially because it looks freaking hard and isn't! 
Therefore I obviously needed a scarf too. 
TidBite 2: Infinity scarf.
I started this at the beginning of the month. Really i'm almost done! (Which is insane.) In between work, there was a Star Trek Voyager marathon going on. The, um, predictability of the show (which was still epic) enabled me to multitask with extreme ease.
The blue is a touch misleading to the variegation in the ball. It's more of a grey, brick, purple, lime, chartreuse colored ball. With some random ass turquoise snuck in. It's going to be a round, endless scarf OR infinity as the young kids call it. I've got a friend who gave me yarn to knit her an infinity scarf. I'm thinking honeycomb. So the cats out of the bag on that one lindsey. heh

Also during my epic voyage through Voyager I finished my TidBite of Dresser!

I Know! It all very exciting and promising.

 I Loves it So Much! For those just tuning in. Yes, that's algae you see there silhouetted all over a dresser.

 The lighting in my house has left something to be desired. But I have my Tv stand back. Rather, my entire house. The kitchen is kitchen sized again as is my floor, floor sized. The chaos the lack of tv stand had created was starting to cause a serious twitch in my soul.

Until the Tid-verse returns I leave you with a recently ID'd "Squat Lobster".
Mr. Pinch Bug
I like that name better anyway.

Happy Tidbitting

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Steps in the Evolution of the Tid-verse

Oh July...

I noticed that it's been three months. Truthfully it's been in the back of my mind that I've not been meeting the goals of this blog for awhile. Had I gone on a hiatus of the goal or just simply fallen off the train? This month I've pondered that perhaps this blog is no longer meeting my goals. This revelation has come to attention while in the throws of my artistically cyclical behavior. I now know that it's time to refresh and the blog, it's goals and the ideals I have for it.
But how? I suck at all  this recreation crap.

While drawing more pen flowers this spring,

I found myself less inclined to revert back to zendoodling while feeling the bumpy road. Basically I was getting bored of the zendoodle. Not to say it doesn't have a purpose or a time and a place. But it's been time to move beyond simple little drawing I can do super quick just so I have something to post on this blog. As that was the original point of the blog, I came in mild conflict. Although it wasn't something tangible just yet.

Then I started large more labor intensive and challenging projects. The kind that tends to get me in serious ruts because of the challenge or the laborious amount of time to finish, effectively throwing me off the wagon. Without an inflicted deadline, I am very unreliable. Also, a flower in 15 minutes is gratifying. Quick high.
 Repainting a piece of furniture with layers of drying and designing a graphic to paint on it is so much more of a task and therefore rut inducing. OR starting a painting on a Large canvas and getting stuck because i was able to draw the creature once but not a second time because What If I screw it up the second time. OR starting a large knit project (all knit projects are large to me. I am slow.) I am lazy. It's very aggravating.

For example, when you naturally get an A-, it's much harder to strive for the A+. After all, i already got a top score and praise. (The story of my life in one analogy. Personally? Unimpressed.) However, when a project is in half done phases, I am unwilling to show my work. So when i fail to finish, I then feel like I've wasted even more time (blog or no blog). One of my many cyclical issues.

The point!
My conclusion was that I hadn't fallen off any wagon. I'd just gotten the wagon stuck in a ditch. A deep one full of colorful projects. I didn't fall off jack.
Since I wanted to take on excitingly scary, Large projects I needn't abandon the blog. But adapt the blog.
With over 1 hour of determining a new title for this new layering of the Tid-verse. (Terms including Persnickety, Titanic and Labyrinth, all in for for follow-up interviews.) The fellow with the new job: The TidBite. As the Tid-verse is in a state of flux and evolution, I didn't want to get to carried away just yet.
TidBite of dresser:
This week is my Ode to the Large furniture project:

Step 1: Getting all the crap out and sanding the beast.
The filthy white and lavender dresser of my high school days. In North Bend it has been my TV stand and constant eyesore. It matches nothing, including the would-be "white" walls. It was lovely once. No longer.

Step 2: Picking out paint chips...then actually buying them. It's crazy.
Ehem: Balmy Night and European Linen for the interior and silhouettes. 

On Pinterest (heh)  I saw a lovely dresser with a giant plant silhouette painted on the front. I thought it was genius and beautiful. AND not outside the realms of impossible. (Challenge excepted)
Enter nerd angle.
Step 3: Algae. The Tidbits in the TidBite

 I don't do crap the easy way. I have no idea why. Nor can I give myself a break. It's infuriating.
Fucus: A brown Algae who resides in the desiccated upper intertidal zone. 

 So I found a lovely silhouetted algal print (which was the first bit of cheating I allowed myself) and slapped a one inch grid on it, blewdrew up my grid to 300% and proceeded to draw me up some algae. I was going to just do one.  I liked them both. So in the spirit of biting off more then I can chew, I went full throttle per usual.

After cutting them out with an x-acto blade (which was more the a little gut wrenching), I taped them to the dresser. Also known as step 4.

Now comes the TidBite factor.
 I'm not done.

 BUT all the algae hullabaloo went down in the last week giving me hope, as it was the rut inducing step.

The final steps include tracing my drawing onto the beast which lies smack in the middle of EVERYTHING in my house and then paint in the lines. Both activities falling under the old category of cheating, which i am beginning to relax. Age, enlightenment or inter-dementional mermaids? No matter the cause, I seem to be less hard on myself. Perfection tends to lead me to ruts. Eh.

Next entry: A TidBite of Yarn. Perhaps I'll have an update on the dresser. No promises, since a TidBite allows for more timetable leniency.
I leave you with this Nudibranch.
Happy Tidbitting.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Watercolor is for flowers, spring is for motion.

April has sprung.
 The last two weeks looked at me, blinked and flit away. I find this to be an unfortunate pattern of this job. Or maybe it's just the world indicating that I'm an adult and this is how time actually passes. (dislike)
I love being at sea, but when it eats so many consecutive days, you feel like you've not been gone at all, yet time has moved on, blatantly. More flowers are blooming and dying. I'm pretty sure the yard maintenance crew visits my house more often then I do. The months slip away. It's April. What the hell.

BUT on the April flip side, I get to plant my hoarded seeds (which a friend accidentally reminded me of yesterday while steaming in)! When I plant things, leave then come back to sprouts, it's probably one of my favorite bits of being gone. For example, today I noticed that a potted plant was Not dead (sprout!), and that my gladiolas from last year are alive!!!! and three inches tall.
Small victories.

Any who...
I've been on the tidbit train but not having an SD card slot on my computer is a blog killer.
SO to my excitement, when my new weatherproof YELLOW camera arrived, I noticed it came with a delightful bit of app convenience. The beast has WiFi. Oh glorious day.

I've started a new contract! New boats, new fishing efforts and therefore new species!
Meet yander hatchetfish on the left, and mr. pacific tomcod on the right.
The part of my job I love. New things.
Tidbits: Let the pen-bits continue!
 Pen sketch technique applied, real life attempt, uno.
My first attempt at "squiggle pines". I received a compliment from a woman standing behind me. She must have thought I was touched in the head in the hour preceding. Her compliment came from surprise when she realized I was scribbling the trees in the distance. Proof that they looked like trees. Success.
(Yes it might have taken an hour to draw pen trees in one corner of a 9x12 but
I was attempting to cheer.)
 In the brief but dense time that was the last two weeks, I watched a soccer game in a huge field of halflings. They call them 8 year olds. So just imagine little kids scurrying around in maroon and black uniforms in the lower blank space.  Also, while I fear children and their encroachment on my life via friends and all social medias, I realized that I missed being out at sports events. To my list of supposedly misplaced phobias, add: interest in being a soccer mom.      

Pen "techniques" attempt two, on a group of watercolor cards. With watercolor overlay.
Tonight I got my watercolor on. Hard. Not saturating everything in bright color negating dimension, is Hard.
 Mer fav is the lower left tulip. I don't know how I feel about the tree thing, before and after paint. Trees are hard. They have lots of pieces and dimension. rude.
 I visited my local botanical gardens earlier in the month. I learned a lesson attempting some quick flower sketches. Apparently I'm old and crouching in order to stay dry for the time I need to draw a tulip, it's boarder line life ending. As though my tendons and ligaments in my legs all seized at once. Grace failed me the following 10 minutes. Now I know why middle aged ladies sit in camp chairs while sketching their majestic fields. (I've seen this. It's real.)

Subject change!
New purchase: "Identify and Paint Butterflies: A field guild for the artist and naturalist"
I don't usually buy art books. But it seems I've been on a roll.
It's like the book went into my mind and steered me to the crap book table in Walmart. You know, the table where concerning compilations of Justine Bieber, cookbooks and bibles go to die. And there it was all askew and alone. I'm pretty sure it called to me. Well, now it's adopted and lives in my home. butterflies!

Finally, and completely unrelated to everything.
 I also bought a freaking Hula Hoop of green spangly GLORY.

Happy Tidbitting,
Hula hoop on my people, hula hoop on.