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Friday, July 25, 2014

Mr. Squirrel and his problem with the Gathering.

Mr. Squirrel and his problem with the Gathering.
Catinka Knoth

Mr. Squirrel came home very frustrated from a gathering he had been at. Not a gathering of nuts. 
Though one could say it was possibly close to a gathering of nuts.

After he came home he kept replaying his arguments in his head over and over and over again. These were arguments over issues that had been going on over the past year - not just that evening. He wanted to give up his role in the gathering because he was not satisfied with this state of affairs. He could see no resolution to how he would solve his problem. The problem had gone on so long and  it seemed as if anything he ever tried had no effect on it. 

It was somewhat a communication problem. The gathering operated under the illusion or the assumption that one of them was in charge. They had never really considered that they were all in charge. Or, they had never really clarified how they wanted to operate with each other in their gatherings. 

It always seemed to be a mess.
Information stayed between small groups of members rather than being completely shared with everyone. Everyone assumed that everyone else just knew about things. The more Mr. Squirrel thought about this the more frustrated he got.

He felt as if all his thinking was just bringing up more unpleasant thinking. It was making him much nastier than he liked being. He did not like being this way. 

He wanted everyone to have a good time with each other. He wanted everyone to know what was going on. He wanted everyone to be part of the whole decision-making. But he felt the decisions needed to be made quickly so that action could be taken.

He felt very sad that he thought he would most likely have to disengage from his involvement completely. 
It had caused him just too much inner  turmoil that just disrupted his happiness. He wanted to feel peaceful.

Was feeling peaceful something one just decided to do, no matter what the circumstances? Or, was it a matter of finding a solution to whatever was disrupting the peacefulness? Was it really a matter of resolving the conflict? After all this did not seem to be a conflict for the others. They did not seem to have a problem with these questions. None of this seemed to matter for them. Of course he could not be sure about that because none of this had ever really been discussed with the others. He had no idea what the  others thought of this, whether they thought of it, whether it tickled their awareness at all, whether it was of any concern to them. He had no idea.

Should he try to find out how the others saw this?

He had almost been up all night tossing and turning about this. Luckily he had a book that he was reading just for falling asleep. But he woke up early and got up early. Had an early breakfast and then found himself going round and round with the problem again. Now he was not like a squirrel with a nut but like a dog with a bone.

Mr. Squirrel got out his little writing book and began to scratch away in it with his pen. At least he would write about his situation, about the things that were bothering him.

The only solution that he could see was to leave his involvement  with the gathering. He was having a hard time choosing to do that. It usually hurt to leave others.

On the one hand one felt as if one was all alone. One felt as if one was cutting oneself off. One felt as if one was abandoning others. One was not made to abandon each other. That went so against the grain for a body.

He asked himself over and over again had he done everything he could to make things work in a way that he would be happy with.

Whether or not he had, he felt that he had tried long enough that it was now time  to stop trying. That too made him sad - to feel as if he was giving up. Persistence was very important to him.

Of course he did not need to decide now. But he did not know how much more of this turmoil he could take.
He felt that such turmoil was just not good to have. It was unhealthy to have it for so long. He also felt like it was breaking his heart to have to cut himself off. Would he have the inner  strength to do it?

Mr. Squirrel had no answers yet. He had only just chewed on his problem some more. But he at least had given it another form, by writing about it in his book, rather then it's just being in his head as something to think about. He had given it a form in the physical world where it was something he could look at outside of himself and not just inside himself. This  meant that he could share that form with others. The others did not need to be the others in the gathering. It could be anyone. It could even be himself later on.

He closed his book and put away his pen, making sure to clean off the ink so that the pen  would be nice and clean for the next time he sat down to write. He felt a little bit better about his problem. His writing in the book had made something that existed as a thing of itself in the world. It had its own life. Anyone might come and read it at any time. And they might think about it. Maybe they'd find an answer to the question. Or they would maybe find that they had the same problem and feel good to know that somebody shared that problem with them. They would not feel alone. They would feel connected again even if just a little bit.

Until Mr. Squirrel had written in his little book this problem was just something floating around in the air or in his head or between the members of the gathering. Now it could be looked at a little bit better. It could go into the collection of what everyone knew. Others could use it. Yes, he felt a lot better already.

Catinka Knoth
241 Broadway, Apt. B
Rockland, Maine 04841
207-596-0069, 207-691-5544



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Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Beach roses over bridge railing, Spruce Head, Maine, 2010; ref pic for w/c studies, 7/15/14,


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Monday, July 14, 2014

Beach roses scenes inventions - demo drawings & exercises, adult art class, 7/14/14.

Draw lines of repeated marks.
Draw two waving lines like paths - of varying paths. Place the marks, one kind to a line, on the lines like a necklace.
Re-create those lines, those necklaces without the guidelines.
Make two largish organic shapes, with an outline, and fill them in with one of your marks - a different mark for each shape. Re-create those shapes using the marks, but no outline, and no outlining with marks either.
Re-create those shapes again coloring them in with green, leaving white spaces where there would be flowers, so you're really just filling in the background - and again no outlines.
Final drawing: draw a margin around the edge of the paper so that you stay off the edges. Do a very quick continuous line drawing of an imaginary landscape. Color it in quickly - use marks if you like, symbol marks, calligraphic marks.


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