On 01.02.02, I was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer. Too late for surgery, I had chemotherapy, which failed. In May the chemotherapy was changed and I was soon in remission which was celebrated and welcome and lasted nine years - until October 2011. There was progression in 2011 so more treatment was indicated and I am now back in partial remission. But I'm not only a cancer patient - I also enjoy my family, walk my dogs and am learning to draw and paint. Life is good!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

The sunny side of the street

Nana's Art Camp is currently closed but will reopen next Wednesday.  For the final session I introduced Youngest Grandson to manga/anime and he really got into that.  Then he asked for a refresher of zentangling so I printed out some new patterns for him and got him started.  Along the way I taught him simple techniques - how to make crisp page edges and a reminder to check pens for water solubility (after my manga blurred because I didn't use a Sharpie).

During the heat of the day I gave him a stack of my sketchbooks to look through.  He spent hours on that one, totally absorbed.  I told him the purpose wasn't to compare skill levels, but to learn what can be put in his own sketchbook.  Mine are truly random - I use all sorts of materials and techniques - from black ink sketches to collage, watercolor and acrylic - I draw from photographs or from location.  When I was trying to lose weight I drew all my food!  (Chemotherapy was faster....)  Sometimes I added entire paragraphs of written journaling, other times the pages were only drawn.  I pasted in photographs and ticket stubs.  Truly, anything that filled up the pages was fine with me and that's what I was hoping to get across. I told him I try to add one page a day so the books would stack up and he made a resolution to keep his own pages coming.  Then, since we were scanning and shrinking his work into postcards to mail to Mom, he said he would send me one card each week.  I promised to reciprocate.

This morning, when I checked my messages he had sent me a link to his own blog that he started last night.  He must have been up 'til midnight to get that done because we didn't drop him off  at the meeting place until about 7:30 and he was still almost an hour from home.

He's coming back on Tuesday evening and will stay again until next Friday so I need to get my act together for Session Three of Nana's Art Camp, something that is as much fun for me as it seems to be for him.  Thank God for grandchildren, right?  (Or any kids you can borrow from your neighborhood or, in my case, from Juvenile Hall!)

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