Day 205: Alexis Krauss

Alexis Krauss Drawing

Sleigh Bells Spin CoverA while back I had a free subscription to Spin magazine, and I got an issue with a picture of Alexis Krauss from Sleigh Bells on the cover that I really liked. I saved the magazine so that I could draw her at some point, which I did last night.

It doesn’t look too much like her because I did it in less than 15 minutes and didn’t try too hard to measure out her face mentally, I guess because I wanted it to be more fluid. I think it worked out.

Day 204: Patagonia


Jim and I are currently in the process of planning a big trip to Patagonia and Buenos Aires. I think the plan is to fly down to El Calafate and make our way to Los Glaciares National Park to see the Perito Moreno Glacier. Then it’s off the El Chaltén, which will be our base for hiking and hopefully getting a glimpse Cerro Torre and Cerro Fitz Roy. During this part of the trip, we’ll basically be at the end of the Earth tramping through wild and beautiful landscapes. I’m both nervous and excited thinking about it.

After Patagonia, we’ll be flying back to Buenos Aires for a few nights, where we plan on touring the city and going dancing at a Tango club. We’re going to take eight weeks of lessons before we leave. With the experience we have with swing dancing, I’m hoping we’ll at least be good enough to dance a few songs.

I can’t wait for our trip!


Day 202: Alien


Alien Eyes

Alien Foot

Hand Covered in Pastels

Yesterday, I drew an alien on the sidewalk in front of my house and discovered that I really, really like working in pastels. I love the intense colors and how easy it is to create highlights with the lighter chalk.

Also, I managed to check something off my list of 32 things to do before I turn 33 since number 23 on the list was to draw on the sidewalk with chalk. Yay!

Day 201: Homemade Pickles with Reused Pickle Juice

Pickles with Reused Pickle Juice

How is it possible that I’ve lived this long without realizing that I could reuse pickle juice to make new pickles? How?

A few days ago, I finished a GIANT 64 ounce jar of pickles (thanks, Woodman’s!) and I had all this leftover pickle juice that I didn’t want to throw out so much so that I just left the jar in my refrigerator. Kinda weird, but whatever. Then, this afternoon I saw that they were selling some lovely pickling cucumbers for 99 cents a pound at the farmers’ market in downtown Chicago, and I was struck with the idea to re-use my pickle juice to make NEW pickles. I bought a bunch of baby cucumbers and got excited!

At home, here’s the recipe I made up for myself:

  1. Cut pickling cucumbers into strips and put them into a ball jar
  2. Boil old pickle juice
  3. Pour pickle juice over cucumbers in the ball jar
  4. Add a few fresh cloves of garlic for flavor and additional vinegar if necessary to cover the pickles
  5. Let sit until cool and then refrigerate for 24 hours or until the pickle juice has permeated the cucumbers.

Like most refrigerator pickles, I expect these to keep up to two or three weeks max, although in this apartment, I suspect they’ll last about two days.

UPDATE 6/23/12: These pickles are delicious! Can’t stop eating them!

Day 200: Yoshi


It’s day 200 of my 365 blog. How exciting! Thanks to all my friends and family who have been super supportive, provided me with lots of good ideas, and listened to me talk incessantly about what I make each night. It’s meant a lot!

After a lovely afternoon at the beach (I took the bus there after work by myself–it was great), tonight I used an amazing online drawing tool call Scribbler Too in order to make this little Yoshi sketch (for the uninitiated, Yoshi is a character from the Mario Bros. video games). Basically the tool makes even the simplest sketch look amazing. Yay!

Day 198: Rooms

Room 1

Room 2

Room 3

Back Cover

I have to admit something—I’m obsessed with vintage decorating books. Sometimes it’s because the decorating is hideously ugly and sometimes it’s because I love the colors and style of the vintage rooms.

Several months ago, I was fortunate enough to have found a copy of the book Creative Decorating on a Budget from Better Homes and Gardens, a great book from 1970. Flipping through the pages is an amazing experience that keeps me guessing. Why does that wallpaper match that couch? Why is there zebra print on everything? In some cases, the decorating also makes me happy. Several of the rooms look beautiful and use simple style and bold colors to make a statement.

On Sunday and Monday, I spent a lot of time scanning all of the pages of this book onto my computer and then, for a little fun, on Monday I loaded some of the pictures into Inkscape and played around.  The result is the top three colorful pieces.