In Which My Rational Self Delivers A Well-Intentioned Slap To My Artistic Self And Is Applauded By My (Daunted) Emotional Self

For reasons too tedious to relate, we all have to take 10 days leave between now and Christmas. Which has me in rather a tizz.

I find it hard to take holidays for two reasons: firstly because there never seems to be a ‘downtime’ here as I work across all our projects and their deadlines overlap into a fairly constant state of pre-press crisis, and secondly because it is teeth-gnashingly irritating trying to book holidays as a single person. Most places are designed and priced for twin-share or couples.

This is aggravated by the fact that there are SO MANY things I want to do and places I want to see here in Australia, that I simply do not know where to start.

Ferrinstance:
1. The Ghan. A 3 day train trip from Adelaide on the south coast up through the red centre at Alice Springs and on to Darwin on the north coast.
2. Kakadu National Park
3. Uluru and Kata Tjuta
4. Scuba diving on the Great Barrier Reef
5. I’d like to find out more about the various types of Aboriginal art from the practitioners themselves
6. Seeing cassowaries in the remains of Australia’s rainforest on the north east coast. They are the most dinosaur-like creatures.
7. Scuba diving with whale sharks on the Ningaloo reef, west coast
8. Visiting the interior and the desert
9. Going to Melbourne. I know, I know, its only a short plane hop away from Sydney and I’ve been here two years…
10. snowboarding and cross-country skiing

So, what have I booked for part of my obligatory ten days? Well, actually, an intensive week’s oil painting course, here in Sydney.

The only trouble with the creative input of this job is that it is just enough to take the edge off my usual constant craving to draw and paint. Each day I do a little sketching of concepts for spreads in new books, as well as a little ‘tweaking’ of artworks from other illustrators; its as though this art snacking has ruined my appetite.

This course should push me beyond the boundaries of what feels comfortable (by which I mean, what I know I’ll be good at), because the emphasis is on classical teaching of techniques and use of the various media, about which I know very little.

~~~~~

Read this, from the Australian Department of Trade’s archives, if you want a shocking glimpse back into 1963…
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minute-p2-large_tcm2-2533

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6 Responses to In Which My Rational Self Delivers A Well-Intentioned Slap To My Artistic Self And Is Applauded By My (Daunted) Emotional Self

  1. Colm says:

    Tends to become a battleaxe.. I nearly choked on my cereal! Holy cow, it shows clearly what the attitude was like.

    Sounds like you have quite a list to get through there Trucie. Go for it if you can!

  2. Desert trips can be almost as stressful as work – – –

  3. OMFG. I like how he kept referring to the women as marrying within 5 years. As if they couldn’t keep on working after that.

    I have to say that that attitude, especially the part about taking the place of a man, was one of the major reasons my mother did not divorce my father when we were young. (I would have been 10 when this paper was written.) She was well aware of how difficult it would be for her to get work that would support her and four children, because of the prevailing attitude that men needed jobs more than women because the men had families to support.

    The oil painting class sounds really wonderful. I’ll be you enjoy it immensely.

  4. woo says:

    Colm – yes, that phrase has stuck in mind rather forcibly, too…

    Archie – good point. Preparation is clearly the key.

    healingmagichands – exactly. I think that must have been a major contributing factor to many marriages not ending in divorce in those days of such prejudice against women in the workplace. No other options available. And didn’t you love how they writer says that having young attractive women in subordinate roles woulc be good, but that they won’t stay young and attractive for long which could then become a problem!!!! Honestly, it makes my blood boil.

  5. David says:

    I haven’t really noticed that men mellow with age, as the paper asserts. I know I certainly haven’t. 🙂

  6. OmbudsBen says:

    Honestly, it doesn’t surprise me. This was all so pervasive that it took quite a heculean effort by “2nd wave” feminists to get past it. This weekend we watched a Bette Davis interview from 1971 where she at one point holds forth on why she is “not women’s lib.”

    I knew people who called it “women’s lip.”

    There also is something innate in us to look out for our own, if you’ll permit me a quick vignette from when I worked in publishing. Up and coming manager A apparently had a private chat with new manager B and told her than hiring another woman as manager would be good because she would “fit in better.” B was dumb enough to repeat the comment among the editors including my friend C; A got wind of it and called B into her office. Soon thereafter B called C in to her office and told her “I never said that.”

    C, of course, wasn’t going to contradict her own boss. But B had said it to at least 2 people, so we all *knew* it had happened. That was in 1997, in the SF area, which likes to think of itself as enlightened. But it was sexist, and it happened among well-educated people who should have known better. It is intrinsic to look out for our own — I think you have to learn to empathize outside your own tribe.

    David, I’m so mellow now, my wife considers me ripe.

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