My Attempt at Linocut Printing… & a Life Lesson

THIS WAS FUN!

So a few years ago I purchased a mounted linocut and the speedball cutters but quickly realized that my original idea wasn’t going to work. But when I drew the above design, it reminded me of the kind of designs I want to eventually print to fabric for purse designs and such.

I finally had a day off last Sunday and decided to drag my self out to Michael’s, JoAnn’s, the Art Store (Blick) and Barnes and Noble for a little sun (I worked all weekend and needed to get out even though I had no intentions in purchasing anything,) and inspiration.

While walking around the art store I remembered I wanted to try to transfer my drawing to a lino. So I chose an unmounted piece of lino simply because it was #CheapCheapGangGang and quickly realized that it is extremely difficult to cut. I would love to try the soft stuff but until the price comes down, I’m good.

TIP: While watching tons of youtube videos someone said you can take a blow dryer to unmounted lino and it will soften (I will have to try that next time).

And I probably shouldn’t have chosen a super complicated image as my first lino cut but like usual I tend to just jump into the deep end. WHICH REMINDS ME: While on my Sunday adventure I came across a book called, Make it Mighty Ugly, which I will be doing a review on once it arrives. But I love the idea, as my teacher use to say it takes a 100 bad drawings before you get one good one. So I kept faith that even if it turned out like garbage that the experience would be worth it.

WHICH… MIND BLOWN…

As this concepts correlates with my purse making. Which I invested in a book about that too… (One more thing, am I the only one that goes to the book store to just look them up on your phone and order them used online. I may be aiding to the end of bookstores but in my world, they would be open regardless of profit, like libraries.) But back to my mind being blown… I was supposed to update you guys on starting again with my sewing, and I had begun again, but another mistake was made and it threw everything off and there I was again, staring my disappointment and doubt in the mirror again. Like a punch in the chest; I felt defeated.

I need to extend this concept to my sewing. I’m wanting so bad for it to all be perfect and pretty and be evident that I’m getting closer to eventually opening a store. But if I don’t allow my self to make mistakes I’ll never grow. It will just sit in the middle of the floor. I JUST NEED TO MAKE THAT SHIT UGLY! Get over it. I also think it would be wise to invest in some muslin so that I can freely work out my designs without wasting more expensive fabric. I need to just practice, practice, practice with out pressuring my self that everything needs to be perfect. EXHALE…

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So yea… I chipped away, sliced and diced for three days (after work), and had a lot of fun. It reminds me of working with clay, just very hard clay. My only advice is to be patient and move the tool away from your body as I initiated my self with a slice to the finger. I will say this… Even though it is extremely time-consuming, it is so intimate, like when molding clay, and though I haven’t had the opportunity to try screen printing, I think there is nothing like lino cutting and just might be my choice of method as I move forward.

So yea, I’m feeling good again… excited, happy. I’ll never learn if I’m not willing to make mistakes and be open to the learning experience.

So WOOSAAA, Don’t take yourelf to seriously, have some fun, who gives a f, and just be yourself.

Go Confidiently & BEautifulyODD

xoxoxoxo

Olisa Rachele

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A Project List for your Bullet Journal

I find making this project list helpful on a monthly basis or when ever I start to feel lost, confused or am suffering from a momentarily lapse of amnesia. It can be helpful to refer to it and remind myself of the many things I am working on and what small steps I need to take to achieve my goal. It can be updated any time by simply creating a new list and be implemented into your weekly layout in your bullet journal.

Depending on how much space you’ll need and how many task you need to do for one particular project, you can choose to create a page for each individual project. Now is also the time to list on a scratch piece of paper how many projects you may actually have and want to work on. Don’t choose too many. You may have ten projects like my self that you want to work on but perhaps your focus needs to only be on 3 to 5 things. Or you only have time for one special project; Perhaps some are easier than others or take priority. I find that most of us know what are goals are but struggle to break them down in simple steps to help us achieve them.027

So for an example lets use blogging as my first project:

BLOG

A.) In your 1st column list all the task that you WANT OR NEED TO DO for your blog:

  1. Blog content exercise
  2. Finish all 4 blogs for the Month of January
  3. 4 Images
  4. Read Blog Inc.

B.) In the 2nd column list WHEN you need to achieve these things. I find it easier to break down my task by whether they need to be done daily, weekly or by providing an actual deadline date. (you can choose to leave an explanation):

  1. by 1/31
  2. weekly
  3. weekly
  4. daily

C. HOW, In the 3rd column list how you will achieve this.

  1. List 10 possible blog ideas by end of month.
  2. Finish one post a week.
  3. Create one image a week.
  4. Read 15 minutes a day

For some of my other projects maybe I just need to spend an hour a week working on it. I’ve attached pictures that show how I break down my list and then transfer it to my weekly project layout in my bullet journal.029

Remember that you can draw this or type this up; however you choose, the idea is to break down your goals and define how you can achieve them by taking simple, easy steps without stressing about the overall goal.
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I really hope this makes sense… Let me know if you find this helpful or have any questions.

BEautifullyODD

 

 

Frozen in the Face of Fear

So it has been like forever since I sewed something; I think it was around March. OMG. To my defense I had A LOT going on. Things were just spiraling out of control and by the time I resurfaced, the end of the year was on the horizon. I remember the last time quite vividly; I had made a mistake… again. And I had just about had it.

Here I am spending all this money on fabric and batting and I’m over here making silly mistakes, wasting exceptional fabric. It hadn’t mattered how successful I had been. Or that it felt so second nature that I was convinced my ancestors were seamstress or I was at least one in a previous life time.

I left everything in the middle of the floor with intentions in returning but idk… day after day passed. Then there was a death in the family which resulted in a family member crashing on the couch and the mess I had left in the middle of my living room floor needed to be picked up.

I packed it away; Knowing I needed to jump back up on the horse like Tom Cruise hopping back into his fighter jet but feeling and still feeling, frightened. Is it fear? it can only be fear. Fear of wasting money, fear that my ambitions are out of control, fear that I’ll never meet my goal, fear that I’m just a fraud.

So 10 months later, I sat here this past weekend determined to start again. Which duh, doesn’t result in just jumping on to the sewing machine. It takes about 27 steps before that, before you can even sit down, you have to put all the puzzle pieces together.

I had already had the idea of replicating a Kenneth Cole Tote bag I purchased a while ago. I started drawing and checking the measurements, choosing fabric and drawing out a pattern, all while drinking some liquid courage. But the next morning, everything just sat there. I couldn’t move. I was frozen in fear. I watched the tv as intently as possible while I ignored everything in the middle of the floor; only getting up for food and trips to the restroom.

“Before deciding to take flight or fight, most mammals freeze for a few milliseconds to assess the situation before making a next move.” (psychologytoday)

Eager to understand why I felt so paralyzed I came across the above quote and was astonished by the simplistic understanding as to why we freeze when we are afraid. Granted I sat there for more than a few milliseconds and perhaps I could have just walked over there and started anywhere, as long as I started. But perhaps freezing isn’t so bad. It’s ok to assess the situation before moving on. And it was exactly what I needed to do; I needed to develop my sketches and patterns before I rushed off to my machine.

Sewing is this extremely complex task where each step is integral and paramount to the overall finished product.

Anyway… I haven’t given up, you’re suppose to do the things you fear most. Plus, I learned that if I’m frozen in fear, it’s probably because I feel the need to assess the situation before moving on.

“The art of the game is embracing the fear tucking the doubt under your arm running and willing your way to personal freedom.” -Natasha Munson

Fuck fear, Let your ambitions run rampant,

BEautifullyODD

 

 

Creating an Interactive Vision Board

Hey Guys!

So for the past couple of months I’ve been sorta going through a “transition”. I guess that’s what you call a job change, tending to family matters, feeling stuck artistically, and watching television and hiding peacefully under the covers.

But it’s my 32nd birthday this weekend and I am so glad that I took the time to create, what I’m calling, an Interactive Vision Board.

Creating vision boards have been all the craze this past year but I already had two big ones hanging in my bedroom, above my work space; So I hadn’t really felt the need to create another one. But because I decided to have a low-key birthday weekend, I figured wth let’s give it a go.

All I knew, was that I wanted to change-up the vibe. I’ve created plenty of vision boards with images of what I want my future to look like but I wanted to make this one theme specific. I decided to center it around my “Art Business“.

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Now mind you, I was feeling pretty silly walking around michales trying to find stuff that inspired me. It had been a long time since I went out and searched for papers and cute scrapbook accessories (love them). I already had cork board in possession and was trying to refurbish, but if your “cheap / frugal” like me, spending hella money on a project that may not come out, that I didn’t even have a concept for, was sorta starting to bum me out.

Especially when I of course picked out the most expensive two dollar decorative paper they had. I had over 4 feet of surface to cover and it was starting to add up. But once I committed to the paper and started walking around, I found stickers with awesomly designed motivational quotes and figured if I got a few sheets of black paper, a white pen and an old school shake it up gold paint pen; I could make do with what I already had.

So I came home, started going through piles of stuff I had already collected over the years and before I knew it, it was starting to come together. It’s funny how certain craft items, stickers or scrapbook pieces will linger around for years. You pick them up, considering them for your projects and cherish them but put them back; knowing it isn’t quite right. So many things I had been saving, seemed ready to jump on to the board, waiting for this exact moment.

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I have Gemini brain which means I have like 10 projects going on at once. (It is utter chaos but I adore it.) So I made a list of projects and created four action columns. One for ideas, goals, to do (action steps), and achieved. I didn’t just want this vision board to motivate me but help me organize my thoughts, plans and keep me accountable.

I created a little box for my posted notes to hang in, added fabric swatches for my purses, a space to add sketches and tons of motivational stickers. I adore it. It really was a lot of fun and I am so glad I spent part of my birthday weekend creating it. I enjoyed taking the time to assess my goals and breathe new life into them.

Onward,

BEautifullyODD

 

When Everything Seems Fucked Up

I can’t believe I haven’t posted since February 3rd. And it’s now a week from May.

Things were going well for a while… I had been reading books about blogging, sewing on my machine and working on some graphic design pieces. Granted, I was  intimidated by my goals for the blog, and still am.  But then random deaths, and visitors, work crap, and interviews, and doubts and fears started to take over and everything just stopped.

Regardless of my reasons for stopping… I did. I even think I remember the exact moment. I was in the middle of sewing a purse when another failed attempt struck me kind of hard. Plus I was slightly intimidated by what a psychic had told me. (I’ll get back to that.) But I remember wanting to finish it, knowing I needed to jump back on the horse and just keep pushing despite the fail.

But instead of pushing on I let it sit there on the floor and found my self having to clean it all up and put it away till a more suitable time. Of course I’ve had plenty of opportunities since then but instead, I’ve talked myself out of every opportunity… Thinking that I wasn’t ready to give it the time it needed.

And even now the time doesn’t feel right. I’ve been poking at my sketch book here and there, tucking quotes away, going through bins of paper, trying to find some sort of motivation. But truth be told, it ain’t there.

And my life still feels like a tornado whipped through it. Even now, when my heart aches I admit I don’t want to, even though I know I should, even though I know I need to. Art has always been a healing thing for me and I’ve just been hiding from it… intimidated… not wanting my artistic attempts to hurt me either.

When I started this blog, my intentions were to be honest. Even when I can’t move, when I don’t know how to push forward and believe in myself: My intentions are to be able to freely express that and push past all of it, in hopes of inspiring us all to find the strength to push pass these types of debilitating moments.

I’m always so intimidated in pursuing this whole blogging thing, setting goals and then feeling like I can’t keep them. It’s not that I want to set the bar low or anything but I’m trying to find my own unique way to make this work for me. And the only way I know how to do that is by being my self. By being completely honest and raw with you. Because honestly this is the only place I do feel comfortable being my self.

So right now, when everything in my life “seems” pretty fucked up, I’m choosing to begin again.

I sorta have to at this point. At 32 years old I don’t have kids or a husband to tend to. I don’t even have a great body of work to stand behind, I just have my hopes and dreams and everything I’ve learned throughout the years. Out of all the times I could have given up, in high school, in my early twenties chasing after worthless boys, or when i nearly dropped out of college. I pushed through it all and chose to never give up. And that’s why now, when everything seems pretty shity and my heart is beating through my chest, and my anxiety takes my breath away, I choose to begin again. No one can take that away from you no matter how hard they try.

With much love,

BEautifullyODD

 

Hope Before the New Year: 7 Ways to Start the NY’s off Right!

I have seen this quote floating around recently, “If you haven’t started working on 2017 by now you’re already behind.”

I don’t know how everyone else is feeling, but man I feel it.

Up until a few months ago; I was feeling a bit stuck. To be honest I’m still trying to fully dislodge my self from the iky-ness I have experienced. Not only this year but the previous too. It seems like these past two years have weighed heavily on my heart. Despite my challenges, I have been able to grow in a sense; Mainly in part because I launched the blog.

And for all of it I am grateful because in spite of it, I keep trudging along. There is still so much I want to do with the blog and I am so excited about its potenital and the arrival of my sewing machine. It has re-sparked my flame. Trudging isn’t always feeling so depressive now; I’m actually starting to skip again. I still have my bad days. But boy it’s BeautifullyODD when I have my moments of peace and creativity.

All I want is more of those sweet moments in 2017.

I do feel like there is a shift happening in the world and that if you haven’t already jumped now is the time to do so. (Check out Steve Harvey’s Book: Jump)

Ways To Start The New Year Off Right!

  1. Clean! Remove anything of no use. Get Rid of it. No clutter. Amazing, clean, organized workspace. A clean environment leaves room for inspiration.
  2. REFLECT: I encourage anyone and everyone to sit down and seriously reflect over the past year. What did you accomplish, what did you struggle with. Take the time to be honest and ask your self some questions to help better guide you in the new year. Google: year-end reflection journal prompts to help get you started.
  3. Go WithIn: With all the reflection I feel the need to sorta meditate and even do some yoga this weekend to just focus on what I want to manifest for the new year. To open myself to the peace and harmony I want for the new year and making peace with the past!
  4. CELEBRATE! I love to crack open a bottle of champagne! I’m actually partying this year. But whatever you want to do… do it. Get a masage, burn some candles and sit in the tub. Go to dinner by yourself. Just find some way to celebrate the ringing in of a new year and all of its possibilities.
  5. Intentions: Goals are always important and after all the reflecting you did in#2, you should have a better idea, of some of the things you want to change, improve upon, try and or enjoy in the new year.
  6. Don’t Be Fooled. Yes, every day is a chance to start your life. Hence the reason people are like if you haven’t started then you are behind. But don’t let that discourage you, let it be the reason to proceed. With the power of the winter solstice upon us, we come full circle when the year ends and there is something magical in that moment. Something formidable. It may only last for a second. But it’s within that second you have communed with the universe. All your hopes and dreams are wrapped up in that very moment. Which leads to…
  7. Get to WORK! It’s up to you to make it happen. If you have to, take small steps by making a plan or schedule and then stick to it. Just do the work and before you know it… your garden will be in full bloom.

BEautifullyODD

Olisa Rachele