Subway Sketches Part VII

Originally uploaded by Iam2814sGL.

Since starting to sketch on a more consistent basis I have of course also begun to observe people more closely. This girl had spilled a bottle of water in one seat, and then moved across the aisle, leaving the water behind. Then she ate two packs of Pop-Tarts (she shared with the dog to be fair) and then moved AGAIN leaving her wrappers and some rather large crumbs behind, rendering two more seats unusable. She was like some animal, destroying its habitat and then moving on to leave everyone else to deal with it.

Subway Sketches Part VI

Originally uploaded by Iam2814sGL.

This man had one of the most interesting faces that I have ever seen, there was something beyond age or wear. He looked as if his skull had shrunk but his skin was still its original size. I didn't come close to capturing him properly.

The End of an Era

Hell week has ended. Let's just look at this by the numbers:

850: Dollars I lost because I wasn't able to work the graphic design job I was offered.
300: Dollars I actually made from the theatre design job.
14: Average number of hours I spent at the theatre on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.
4: Average number of hours of sleep I got per day.
3: Apartments worth of furniture and belongings we moved.
3: Days that K spent sleeping in the new apartment with no electricity.
2: Shows I opened.

Subway Sketches Part V

Originally uploaded by Iam2814sGL.
This one prompted a long conversation with the young female dancer who was seated beside me on the train. We shared a personal envy for the other's skills, her for my sketching abilities, and me for her ability to keep a beat well enough to dance. Turns out that she was from Conyers, GA, just a few miles from my hometown of Savannah. I love meeting people on the train!

Subway Sketches Part IV

Originally uploaded by Iam2814sGL.
I'm always amazed at the positions that people will contort themselves into in order to comfortably sleep on the train. It keeps them still and in interesting poses for my sketching though.

Subway Sketches Part III

Originally uploaded by Iam2814sGL.
The A Train was local today, and it was cold out, and I had three meetings spaced out along my day, so I spent a LOT of time sitting on the train. Bad news for me, but good news for blog fodder.

The New Apartment

Originally uploaded by Iam2814sGL.
Though you might like a peek at the new apartment. This is just the front stoop, not too awfully different from thousands of others in NYC, but I like it.

Why I Hate Books

Yesterday I spent the day doing one of my absolute favorite activities in the history of favorite activities: Carrying cardboard boxes full of books up stairs. >AH!< Smell the sarcasm?

I HATE moving. Every time I move I rant about how much I hate books, and how stupid I am to buy and own so damned many of them, and I usually spend a few months afterwards re-reading books I already own rather than buying anything new... but eventually I come back when they release a new Harry Potter or a new chapter in the Wheel of Time, and my book buying returns. When I moved to NYC I pared down my collection of books quite a bit, and I was pretty sure that I had gotten it down to the essentials, but as I began packing up for this move I made some deeper cuts. Those hard back copies of the Winnie The Pooh books that I bought years ago when I was in art school... GONE! Some books that I bought at dollar tables because they might have some research in them that I might use for a future show that I might design... GONE!

Those were the hardest. I am a research junky when it comes to my shows. I owned a book that chronicled the history of state fairs with tons of photos, on the off chance that I would ever be asked to design State Fair. Now, keep in mind that I HATE musicals, especially the "classic" musicals like State Fair. But I know that they are often a young designer's bread and butter (ask me what I'll be designing all summer... go ahead... ask...) and I know that there are lots of corn-fed mid-westerners and blue haired old ladies and show queens that LOVE these shows, and that sooner or later someone will do a revival of State Fair. Now, I'll admit... I am not even sure that they actually VISIT the state fair in the show... they may just talk about it the whole time... I have no idea having never read the show, or seen it. But there were some cool photos, and it only cost me a $1 at the time, so I picked it up.

Still, even with the cuts, and the reduction of books that I own I ended up with 10+ boxes of just books. Now, let's talk about the OTHER paper products that I own... files full of research, envelopes, random scraps of paper and cardboard and foam-core and balsa wood that I own for model building.... trees must hate me!

If You Can't Laugh...

Moving always seems to be a comedy of errors, but this move seems to be turning out to be the largest one I have ever experienced. The apartment is gut renovated, so in it's own way it's brand new. This means that none of our appliances are connected to their respective fuel sources, and in fact there is no gas meter in the apartment, or radiators in some of the rooms. We were told that the apartment would be ready by the 20th. When we went to pick up keys, the super seemed surprised that we were there, but gave us the keys. That should have tipped us off. When my new roommate K went there today to wait for Con-Ed and the cable company we discovered that the appliances remained unhooked, the radiators missing. The management office claims that they cannot install the meter until Con-Ed signs off on some odd piece of paperwork. Con-Ed refuses to do anything in the apartment until the appliances are in place and the meter is connected. Management says Con-Ed is responsible for placing the meter. They of course say that this is not the case. Management did however provide us someone to hook up the appliances, who does not speak a single word of English. Meanwhile the cable company shows up and says that THEY can't do anything until the electricity is on. We have arranged for a truck to move on Saturday, and of course we discovered today that it is supposed to be pouring rain all day. The final out come of all this? We will be moving, come hell or high water. The management office claims that the electricity is on and will stay on... on their dime, to compensate us somewhat for the trouble... until we can get Con-Ed in, probably sometime late next week. In the meantime they will be providing us with a hot-plate to prepare whatever food we can. I'm pretty much thinking that anything consumed by us in the next week will either be take-out or microwavable.

This place had better be worth it.

Subway Sketches Part II

Originally uploaded by Iam2814sGL.

Subway Sketches Part I

Originally uploaded by Iam2814sGL.
Since moving to New York I have been trying to build the habit of using my subway time for sketching. Unfortunately the subway is also prime reading time, or even work time some days so sketching gets put to the side. With summer coming I've been reading a TON of scripts lately so sketching has become a very welcome diversion from that. It's made my sketching pretty prolific, so I've decided to share a few of them, Who knows, if this keeps up, I may make these postings a regular feature.

Spoke Too Soon...

Easy come, easy go I guess.... as quickly as I was offered the job, I've lost it. I mentioned that next week was going to be a rocky start, with lots of things to get done... well, it turns out that it was too much for my potential employer. He needs the project he was hiring me for to be well underway by next weekend, and me not being in his offices for three days next week sort of ruined all that. On the plus side I'm told that there may be future projects that I would be considered for, just not this one. Frankly that infusion of cash would have been an ENORMOUS help to me right now... but I guess it is not to be at the moment. I've uttered the word "fuck" more than every David Mamet play combined since I received that phone call, I'll tell you that!

Off the Ledge, Pt. II

Today the second part of my diverging path became a little clearer. My former prof called me today and officially offered me the position that we had discussed last week. Of course it comes at one of the worst possible times, considering that I am in the middle of moving, and I have a show that I have been patently ignoring opening next week. I have a LOT of work to do, so the next two weeks are going to be hellish, but I have to get through them. This weekend is going to be particularly hard I think, moving saturday, building the set on Sunday (I HOPE!)... I guess I've figured out where these paths lead... straight into a rocky patch!

Off the ledge, Pt. I

Well, it's official. The apartment is ours! We are still a few days away from being able to move in, and have not been given official word about apartment numbers... but the landlords approved our application, and we have an appointment to sign the lease. 50 blocks closer to Midtown! No more drunken roommate! No more clogged toilets and 40 layers of paint on the kitchen cabinets! Ah.... life is good.

On the verge

My favorite moments in life are those where I can clearly see my path diverging. Everyone knows that the daily choices you make push your life off in different directions, no matter how small those choices seem at the time. Hell, they even make movies about it. But there are times when you can clearly see that your life is about to change. It is a little like standing on a precipice that is at once an enormous drop, and a gently sloping path to a new place.

Yesterday I made my way to one of those places. I am currently waiting on two decisions to be made, both from outside sources, that will decide how my new life will be structured. The first I was expecting, a new apartment, with one of my friends from back in Savannah who has recently moved to the city, and one of my new friends from here. The applications and credit checks have been made, and we are waiting on final approval from the landlord. It's a lovely three bedroom walk up in West Harlem, in a building that was gutted and completely renovated, so we'll be the first people to live there in its new state.

The second was completely unexpected. I have been doing a little temping to help ends meet, (the theatre is pretty slow right now) and have done a couple days of work for a lighting designer who taught a couple of my classes in grad school. Since then he has transformed himself into a new form of design, a cross between an interactive media designer and an amusement park designer. (Which doesn't even come close to describing all he actually does). Last night he approached me with the possibility of making it a semi-permanent posting. We both realize that it isn't EXACTLY what I want to do with the rest of my life, but I realize that this is an opportunity for me to learn a wide array of new skills, and he realizes that the skills I already have would be beneficial to him. He's asked me to take a few days to think about the position, though I'd be a fool to turn it down, so I get to stand on my precipice for a while and stare down the path.

I wonder where it will lead?

33 1/3

Yes... I'm going to attempt this again. I've started this blog three times, and failed each time to keep more than a day or three worth of posts, all of which I delete when I start again, hoping that this time it will be different somehow.

So what's changed since the last time I started this? Not much really. I expect I always start this at the same point in my life, when some big change has occurred, or when I feel the need to vent over a particular topic. Reading the posts that I deleted before, the last time it was men (are you surprised?) I'm afraid that not much has changed in that regard. I've managed to make it in the world of New York City dating for over a year now, and what do I have to show for it? Two "Let's be friends," two break-ups by email, two guys who seem to have mysteriously disappeared from the planet with no word as to why or where, and a handful of first dates that seemed to go somewhere, and in fact didn't. Pretty typical I guess.

On the upside my professional life seems to be in MUCH better shape. In the same vein, I have lived in NYC for a year now and have paid my rent and lived entirely on the profits of my chosen freelance career. I have NOT waited table, I have NOT worked at Starbucks, I have not sold pints of blood, or any other bodily fluids. I feel pretty proud of that frankly.

Now I just have to get everything else in line.