Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Right Brain Redux Crash Course: Projects 24-26

Still playing catch-up.  We have a few projects to post for you today. First up is a Wild Card project from Jessica. We put in a couple of blank pieces of paper so we could do whatever we wanted.

Jess's Challenge Projects for #24-26

#25 Create something using recycled materials

Sometimes you just feel like painting on a popsicle stick... well, I do. It's not perfect or my best work, but I'm okay with that. (That's definitely a big thing for me.) --Jess

#25 Random Photography 
This is Jess's favorite barn to photograph. She really has an eye for capturing it. It sits around 3,000 feet above sea level on a ridge forming the state line between WV and VA near the southern tip of WV (The road is the state line.) --Kev

#26 Art Based on Scripture
I draw while studying my Bible. God made me a creator, so I remember what I read better when I connect it with doodles and pictures. It's not about creating perfect pictures; it's about connecting with God on a level that resonates with both of us. --Jess

Hebrews 12:15- "See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many."

Kevin's Challenge Projects for #24-26

Today, I drew "Create and draw a new character". This bear will be the main character in a children's book I wrote with my son today. He is inspired by my son's teddy bear.

"Create a newspaper blackout poem". This one is pretty random as far as poems go. To tell you the truth, I had a hard time wrapping my head around this challenge. Don't know if it was the lack of sleep the night before or if I just didn't get it. I can write poems, but the challenge of picking out words from an article... I think I could do a lot better, I'd just need to take more time and be more alert. Not being allowed coffee until they straighten out my heart is maybe one of the worst things about what I'm dealing with.
Here is the text of my "Poem"

No Choice! Go Home!
Racing for the exits
Blasted cat, Outrage! Ridiculous!
Oh, get over it.
The day is so backward!
Grow up. Unless you like ice cream
Ice Cream? Terrible


Pulled a blank paper out today, so that's a Wild card. I got to pick what I wanted to do, so I decided to do my other idea for a t-shirt design based on a scripture verse. I do intend to put digital colors to this, maybe this weekend. The Verse(s) for this image are Ephesians 6:10-18, concerning the "Whole Armor of God".

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Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Right Brain Redux: Project 23 of 30: We're baaa-aaack!

Right Brain Redux: Project 23 of 30

We're baaa-aaack. Sorry for the gap between posts. Lots to do and colds to fight (life with kids. Someone ALWAYS has a cold to share). So, post number 23. 

For this challenge, Jessica pulled out the one-line challenge "Draw something using only one line" in which she had to draw a picture without lifting pen from paper. Kevin (that's me) drew "Write a one-page story based on a random dictionary word."

Kev: Well, I don't have a paper dictionary available, so I used a handy-dandy random word generator and got "Sloughed". For me, the challenge was writing a one page story. I just realized writing this that I missed the spirit of the challenge, sort of. I did USE the word in the story, but I was so focused on limiting myself to just one page that I forgot the story was supposed to be based on the word rather than just including it. But it is already written, so I submit to you:


Brannix cracked open the containment unit, raising the internal temperature by more than a degree. Working quickly, he shaved off a razor-thin sample from the specimen inside and hurriedly resealed the cap. Transferring the sample to a petri dish, he carried it over the high-powered  microscope manned by his colleague.
"Are you certain we shouldn't be working this under full containment, Ardon?" he asked nervously.
"What are you so worried about? This things dead for at least five thousand years. The only reason we keep it chilled is so it won't break down before we can study it."
The sample slid into place and Ardon adjusted the focus on the viewer as he continued "Something killed this thing outright, and it wasn't an EMP. The planet is covered with remains of them. Figuring out what kind of weapon did it will be a real boost in the fight, not to mention our bank... oh..."
Brannix looked up from stirring the noodles he was boiling in a beaker "Oh? What's Oh? Oh doesn't sound good. That was a bad Oh."
"Look here," Ardon tipped the screen around so Brannix could see "There's one nanite functioning. Barely. It looks like its eating one of the inert ones."
"Wow," he replied, slurping his noodles, "Guess after five k, he's pretty hungry. Why would it do that?"
"Reproduction cycle, you boneheaded idiots," boomed the voice of Professor Xedos through the intercom, "Who authorized you to open one of the alien samples?"
"Uh, we just thought we'd do some hands-on studying while we..."
"Look at the screen."
On the monitor, the first microscopic machine had already become more than two dozen. As they devoured the corpses of their ancient fellows, the number doubled every half-second. Then the screen went blank as a silvery mass surged up out of the dish and around the camera lens of the microscope. Within seconds, it was boiling out of the top of the cylinder. Plastic components sloughed off like dead skin as a form took shape in the center of the writhing mass.
"I'm sorry," the lab shuddered as Xedos explained, "Containment protocols have been activated. The lab has been sealed off and ejected from the station. You two... you knew better."

The lights went out as the lab was disconnected from the station's power, leaving only the red glowing eyes of the fully formed alien robot standing amid the ruins of the microscope.

Jess: Jessica's task for today was a true challenge for her: Draw using only one line. My love is a perfectionist, and using the single line means you can't fix mistakes. She is trying hard to embrace the imperfection, but it drives her nuts at the same time. I think she did great. Here are a few of her pieces.

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Friday, September 18, 2015

Right Brain Redux: Update

Right Brain Redux: Update Hey everybody, I know we haven't posted any updates in a couple of days. We will be getting the challenge back on track over the weekend. The reason for the lack of activity is our preparation for a big event this weekend. We are the Children's Pastors at our church, and this Sunday, Kids' Church is taking over "Big Church". We are going to be conducting the service in the main sanctuary, but leading the adults through the service along with the kids. It's been some extra work, but it's going to be awesome. More project posts coming on the other side! Kevin & Jessica Rose

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Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Right Brain Redux: Day 22 of 30-day Creativity Challenge

Right Brain Redux Day 22: Beware Robots Bearing Gifts... Hey, is that ice cream?

Challenges for today include: 
Kev "Draw a friendly robot" 
Jess "Create a newspaper blackout poem".

Robots. You can't trust em. Except for Optimus Prime. Totally trustworthy. Now, this little guy here, he looks right friendly. He's smiling. He's got ice cream. Real cute fella. But note the red eyes. The control panel on his chest looks like it's up to no good. That big grin... is it just his neck plates? Run. He's coming for you...

Pen & ink on 2.5"x3.5 Strathmore vellum finish Bristol

Jess: A newspaper blackout poem... pretty simple concept, blackout words and create something entirely new, a poem in this case. I can't get through it without laughing...

by Jessica Rose

Water is good for you,
But water in your wallet
Instead, invest in a reusable glass.
Cheers to savings!

Ever use a tie?
Did you know they are reusable?
You can reopen a tie
Release the tie.
Once it's open, it's like new.
Since ties recycle.

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Monday, September 14, 2015

Right Brain Redux: Day 21 of 30-day Creativity Challenge

Right Brain Redux Day 21: 3 Weeks In, and They Don't Suspect a Thing

Jessica's project at this milestone: "Make something for someone else". 

Kevin's was "Post a picture of the most interesting thing you saw today".

Kevin: Now, I may be fudging a bit here, because I didn't actually take this photo today. I took it a couple of days ago. But I did not actually SEE it until today. It's a straight-down shot of a little two-prong ginseng plant my mother found when she, I, and mini-me were in the woods the other day (we didn't dig it, but we did plant the berries it had). Besides the fact that ginseng is, to me, the most beautiful plant in the woods, the way the picture turned out was very intriguing to me. To my eye, it almost seems as if the little 'seng leaves are floating above a printed paper backdrop of fallen leaves rather than an unruly pile on the forest floor.

Jess: My task: Make something for someone
I enjoyed making the Zentangles so much that I decided to do a bookmark for Kevin. It was small enough that I figured I'd be able to finish it. (Zendoodles take longer than I thought they would!) Also, he really loved my first attempt. He enjoyed finding all the little symbols and guessing what each thing was based on. I put the bookmark on a page of my notebook to take a pic of it. 

Psalm 121:1-2 "I lift my eyes up to the hills- where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth." 

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Right Brain Redux: Day 20 of 30-day Creativity Challenge

Right Brain Redux Day 20: Blind Man's Bluff

At the 2/3 mark, Kevin had to draw while blindfolded and Jessica was challenged with "Draw Zentangles".

Kevin: "Draw without looking at the paper". That's what the challenge slip I pulled out of the jar for today said. Without looking? I knew that was impossible. So I grabbed a blindfold. Because I knew, jest knew I wouldn't be able to resist looking.
For my subject matter, I chose three characters that I have drawn before.  Two of them very frequently and for years. I used a Pilot G2 gel pen on plain printer paper. I spent about 5 minutes on each drawing. Overall a fun little experiment. I used the fingers of my left hand as placeholders to give me an idea where I had drawn what, but it was still tricky, as Hulk's puny left arm and Warhawk's skinny legs attest. Here are the drawings.
First up is Marvel's Hulk.

Second was Optimus Prime.

And thirdly I drew one of my original characters that I've been drawing over and over since creating him about 25 years ago, Warhawk. Since most of you will have never seen Warhawk, I included a quick sketch of how he's supposed to look.

Jess: Draw a Zentangle

So what's a zentangle? "The Zentangle Method is an easy-to-learn, relaxing, and fun way to create beautiful images by drawing structured patterns." I think mine probably turned out more doodle than zentangle. Here are my results before I had to stop because my hands hurt too badly. I really didn't want to quit. These are a lot of fun actually.

Can't wait to finish it.

I love to create to music. Here's what I'm listening to tonight:

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Friday, September 11, 2015

Right Brain Redux: Day 19 of 30-Day Creativity Challenge (Thursday)

Right Brain Redux Day 19: Day late and More than a Dollar Short

For day 19, we both had photography assignments: 

Jess: Post a picture of the most interesting thing you saw today

We had a long day ahead of us. I had an appointment for testing, and Kevin had a doctor's appointment. Afterwards, we headed to Sam's which about another half an hour away from our doctors' offices. While waiting for Kevin, the boys and I napped in the van. I noticed the parking lot had a lot of trees with these pink, spikey-looking fruits on them. I'd never seen anything like them. They were slightly larger than cherries, but not quite golf ball sized. The diameter was probably close to the size of a half-dollar. (It's weird that those aren't really a common reference anymore.) After Kevin got back, I stepped over to the tree and snapped some pictures. I also took pictures of them smashed all on the sidewalk. The pulp inside was yellowish and very hmm... gushy. (A very technical term there, I know.) 

When we got back home, it was pretty late. Everyone was exhausted, so we just put the boys to bed and crashed. I couldn't go to bed without first looking up what kind of trees these might be though. Thanks to Google,, and the blog Eat The Weeds, I found out these were Kousa Dogwood (Japanese Dogwood) trees. It's a cousin to the Flowering Dogwood, (definitely a tree this Georgia girl is more familiar with!) and their fruit is edible! (I thought about trying one when I found them, but logical adult-me won that argument. She's no fun sometimes.) Just to see, I looked up recipes too. They don't have a lot of yield, so mostly I found jam recipes. To me, learning or discovering something new is really interesting, so those were my photographs for this particular challenge. Fun!

Kevin- Find the letters of his name in everyday objects and nature

Finding the letters of my name wasn't as easy as I thought it would be, but it was fun. I couldn't set up the letters or create them. I had to find them already there. Taking letters from signs didn't count either. The "K" was in the gate of a dog lot. I found the "E" in mossy logs deep in the woods halfway up the side of a mountain while hunting ginseng with mini-me. The "I" is a porch post. "V" showed up in a pair of Pex waterline crimpers leaning against the wall. Finally, I discovered "N" in a fence line.

This was a pretty cool project, and I had to stretch my imagination a bit to find them all, even though there were only five. I put them together so you can see how they turned out. Here it is in both color and black & white.

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Thursday, September 10, 2015

Right Brain Redux: Day 18 of 30-day Creativity Challenge

Right Brain Redux Day 18: T-Shirt 2-4-1!

As luck would have it, today we both pulled T-Shirt assignments. Jessica has "Design a T-Shirt based on a verse of Scripture". I drew "Create a T-shirt that a 'Dr Who' fan will recognize without using any character's face or name".

Inspired by my favorite character from the 11th Doctor's tenure, I submit to you this heavily armed potato.


The verse Jessica chose as inspiration for her design was 2 Timothy 1:6 "Therefore, I remind you to keep ablaze the gift of God that is in you through the laying on of my hands." (HSCB) Especially focusing on the line "Keep ABLAZE the Gift of God that is in you". The idea behind this shirt is to create a piece that fulfills the challenge while also being a design that could be used for a potential future youth ministry.

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Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Right Brain Redux: Day 17 of 30-day Creativity Challenge

Right Brain Redux Day 17: You want Catch-Up on that?
Just to recap for those who have joined us recently: Jessica and myself are just over halfway through a 30-Day Creativity challenge. We randomly choose a single project for each of us daily. Each chooses from their own Challenge Jar. We call this Right Brain Redux, for the old saw that creativity is a function of the right brain, and Redux from the Latin meaning "to bring back, revived". If you have any suggestions for challenges, leave them in the comments and we might add our favorites to the jars.
Today we are still working on catching up. Catching up on sleep (a sick toddler will put you behind on it fast) and catching up on projects. Those of you keeping tally will realize we are actually a day behind, even though we made a post yesterday. I'm also feeling much better after the major surgery I had back in July, so I am also trying to finish the house now (as I have the energy. Better, but still not fully recovered). Our projects for today took us to some interesting places.
For today, Jessica pulled "Color a coloring sheet" while mine was "Draw a Superhero".
Kev: For my challenge to "Draw a Superhero", I decided to go outside of my box a bit. When I do superheroes, I prefer to draw my own characters. I rarely draw ones belonging to anyone else, except for maybe in a doodle. So I elected to draw someone else's character for today's project.
It took me a little while to decide who to draw. Right off, I knew I didn't want to draw a big time super-popular ten thousand pieces of fan art character. No Deadpool (sigh), no Wolverine, no Bats or Superman. I tried to think of an obscure character from Marvel or DC. Even looked at some lists. I couldn't make up my mind. Then I started thinking about that small stack of comics I had when I was a kid. Now, I'm not trying to tell a sad story, but up until I was about ten, we were let's say, less than affluent. I didn't get to go get comics all the time. Mostly, I read other peoples' comics. When I did get one of my own, it got read and reread until it fell apart.
One of those treasures was an issue of the 60's comic "Dr Solar, Man of the Atom". In this issue, Dr Solar is invited to some sort of scientific unveiling and realizes that the hi-tech floating city this guy has built is in fact a giant nuclear bomb. The villain turns out to be King Cybernoid, Solar's arch nemesis. They fight and the human face gets torn off cybernoid to show he is a robot underneath. Now, this was pre-Terminator, so my seven-year-old mind was blown at the thought that a human could be a robot under the skin.
I read this story so many times, I can't even begin to guess how many. But one thing about the comic is when it was handed down to me, it was sans cover. I used to draw covers for it all the time in those years. I still have the comic somewhere. And it hit me; I would, for the first time in probably twenty-five years, draw a cover for that issue of Solar.
Pencil on Canson Bristol Comic cover sheet. 11"x17"

Jessica, for her challenge of "Color a coloring sheet", chose a printable adult coloring sheet with a geometric pattern. She had heard from a number of people that these "Adult Coloring Books" were fun and relaxing. Not for Jessica. She found that while she might find it fun if she was already relaxed, coloring the sheet did nothing to relax her. Quite the opposite, in fact.
First, she had to choose between crayons, markers, and pencils. Then once she chose colored pencils, she had to choose between three set of those. Then, she started counting blocks in the pattern to decide on a sequence of colors. The set of pencils she is using is a 36-piece set. After several false starts that included reprinting the sheet at least four times and starting over, she finally narrowed the color palette down to eight pencils. Then she told me that she'd like to be painting some watercolors. She did finish the center of the pattern, but it definitely did not make her feel relaxed. She thinks that perhaps a new twist on something she already knows she enjoys would be more calming or relaxing after a long day of not feeling well following a night of little sleep. Something as rigid as the geometric pattern is more stressful than relaxing. She feels it might have been less so if she had chosen a less rigid, more organic design.

It wasn't a bad project. Turned out rather nice. I t just wasn't "relaxing".

Source: "Don't Eat the Paste" Blog  by Shala Kerrigan

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Monday, September 7, 2015

Right Brain Redux: Day 16 of 30-day Creativity Challenge

Right Brain Redux Day 16: Sunday Poets

Good Sunday, great Kids' Church, relaxing afternoon. Today, both of us drew writing assignments in the poetic vein. I have to write a Haiku about the last thing I watched on TV, while Jessica writes a poem on a random subject chosen by Mini-Me.

Kev: Write a Haiku about the last thing you watched on TV.
It was almost Ninja Turtles. But after mini-me went to bed, we watched Episode 8 of Top Chef: Texas - Season 9 (We have this on Amazon Prime and are rewatching it as we originally saw it not too long before Little arrived. Blur time.)

Top Chef Season Nine
She Serv'd Bigfoot To LaBelle
Yay Sarah's Gone Now

Jess: Write a poem on a random subject chosen by our oldest son. 
He chose "dump truck." 
I do have some experience with dump trucks. My dad drove one for many years, and when I was little I definitely spent a long time answering "what do you want to be when you grow up?" by quickly replying, "a dump truck driver like my Daddy!" So, here's a little tribute on his random topic that turned out to be a very emotional piece for me.

Dump Truck

by Jessica Paul Rose

Your boots are by the door
Waiting for tomorrow.
Caked in clay and trials
Their soles worn to the floor.

Go to sleep in apprehension
Praying I don't miss you.
Early hours are no matter
They've lived here long before.

Ice crashes in the cooler
Sends me running with a push.
Imploring eyes to greet you
Please... can I go with you today?

Excitement doesn't compare
To that familiar bounce and sway.
The smell of oil and laughter
Sometimes drifts too far away.

You take me on a journey
And how my world looks grand.
That dump truck is a carriage
For more than just the sand.

We eat
And drive.
Then suddenly,
It's time.

Kids line the fence to watch you leave.
Do I have to go, Daddy?
I love you.

Oh, wait!
Please bring me a mountain

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