Above: the tax day spread in my 2009 fake journal. I used Ziller acrylic ink and dip pen, with only a smidge of Schmincke Pan Watercolors.
A good friend wrote to me today and asked said, "Why fake journals, it doesn't compute for me?"
It was a serendipitus note because today was the day I was scheduled to put up the fifteenth page spread in my journal: April 15, 2009—Tax Day. (Even in the alternate Minneapolis that my journal author lives in there is of course death and taxes.)
I had tried to explain to my friend, "What's the point? Why? Why anything in art: because you're drawn to it, because you have to, because it's fun, because, just 'cause." And I went on to explain some of the other points I mentioned when I started this blog.
But one thing I omitted and didn't realize until I posted the April 15 page spread. I hate April because of taxes. I hate the paperwork, I hate everything about it. I'm the type of person who likes to finish things well in advance of deadlines yet I have learned to live with a man who likes to do taxes at the very last moment. In the past if you were to turn on the news April 15 you would typically see Dick right there at the post office at 10 p.m. in the video of people posting their envelopes. Happily, just as I have adjusted, he's adjusted a bit too and now he's typically done before dinner time.
Because of the stress of April (if you don't work for yourself with a business that has many many jobs through the course of the year, sale of artwork and books, and teaching, you cannot believe the paperwork and I keep current all year long) I have always had special projects in April so that I can move from work right into a very intense and demanding, yet fun and engaging project. One that can be interrupted often to answer questions as required, or provide additional copies of some receipt or other. (Interruptibility is key, but deeply engaging at the same time.)
One year I wrapped various body parts in sculpting wire and attached them to boards to make a series of self-portraits in 3-D. Other years I would do a daily series of paintings. But since 2001 it seemed simplest to just shift my fake journaling to April.
Some people might find that adding another task to your day makes this month even more stressful, but I find that the additional task helps me focus all my work better.
So there are many reasons I like to keep fake journals upon occasion, but April offered an additional appeal. And of course I love any excuse to have buttons and t-shirts.
There are nine days left for people containing their fake journals in April. I'm off to do today's entry. If you haven't started yet and want to give it one last sprint there's still time. Why? Just 'cause.
For people reading the text on my pages, the spread above reads:
Verso to Recto:
Another day close at the compound. Roger has been making assignments. Nothing yet for me, Chuck, and Fleck.
Funny how some things never change. Tax Day. The mood is subdued. I took advantage, before coming here, of the corps' accounting network. I'm filed. Several folks here were up late last night doing paperwork. And Chuck was one of them! In an unguarded moment he let slip that he has two sons (5 and 8) and a wife in Seattle. Why she doesn't file I don't know. The courier comes at 8 p.m.
Michelle said she'd baby sit me while I sketched so he'd have more time. Frankly she frightens me with her gung ho attitude. I sketched this bunny feeding—inside the compound. A good choice because it was obvious right [a]way she was impatient to be inside.
light hitting the side of the bunny making an edge of brilliantly light fur. This bunny has a split ear too but no myxomata!!?