January in Review

A day late.

I do not have a good reason for not posting yesterday. I was creating art and time got away from me. There were a few other things I wanted to do yesterday as well, but I ended up doing them today.  All because of the art.TacomaStaryNight_Small

I am transferring the video files from my camera to my computer so I can edit video as well.  I hope to have something for you tonight.

Today is a good day to cover all the stuff I did in January.





  • A lot of it was work at my part-time job.
  • I also had 4 interviews for more stable
  • work (these take a lot of energy.)
  • I created three Valentine’s Day themed paintings, two ink wash and one gouache.
  • I created three Music themed Skull paintings, ink wash.
  • I did two small acrylic paintings.
  • Ordered postcard sized prints of the Valentine’s Day things.
  • Updated the e-shop and gallery.
  • The rest of my “free time” was spent streaming TV, reading manga and just avoiding working on art.

Looking at this list it feels like I did not do much.

I have to remind myself that I did not do anything much during the first two weeks of January, just streamed TV shows, read manga, and was generally unmotivated. I went from dealing with one frustration to the next and then trying to escape for a while.

Almost all of the art came from the last two weeks. Once I started on the Valentine’s Day art I just could not stop. I just kept going. I was inspired and the motivation to create just kept coming.

I created 7 new things in two weeks (one of the paintings was done in early January.)

February looks to be quite busy also.

I am trying to find events to vendor at.

I have made “dates” to have coffee with some new friends.

I should be starting a second art related part time job. I am super exited, I have been looking for an art related job for ages.

I am actually reading books! I am also taking a lot of old books to a second hand book store to see if I can get a few dollars for them. Any amount helps to turn things into art 😉

I also have a few ideas for other arty projects. I just have to figure out how to make the upcycling bit of the project work with the arty part of the project.


OMG! A Scheduled Blog Post!

A blog post on the scheduled day?  How could I!
In all seriousness I just did not have anything to write about.  It is challenging to come up with something to write about twice a week.
It would be awesome if you awesome readers could give me a hand.


I am not sure what to write on Mondays. I ran out of motivation for Motivation Monday, and my life is just not interesting enough for me to post about that weekly.

I was thinking about doing product reviews or some simple tutorials.

Maybe a random topic selected from a comment on a previous post, or from Facebook or Instagram?

Ask me a question or give me a suggestion so I can write about that on Mondays!

It gets better!

The person’s who question I choose to answer will get free art!

Questions should be art or business related.

Leave a comment or send me an email at carissa at artbycarissac dot com.

Emotion Overload

I just got off the phone with a great friend.  The brief glossy version for the reason for the call:

This person is dealing with an extremely bad time in his life.  Multiple things have gone wrong and they have been left to clean up the mess and resolve the remaining issues.  Not for the first time.  They needed an ear and some support, a friend.

I am a friend.  Even though they know I am terrible with the supportive words, I am still a friend that will listen, and offer what I can.  Mostly an ear and cliche words of support and honesty (usually the brutal kind.)

I am terrible with these things.  Really.  If you want someone to give you comfort and hope, do not call me.  I become factual and robotic when presented with these kinds of situations.

A reason I am terrible at this kind of thing, is because my life has been fairly easy so far.  I have not had any major problems such as a close relative die (horrifically or otherwise.)  I have not had my heart broken and no major betrayals.  I have no experience with these kinds of things.  I have lived a “charmed life” in those regards.

This does not mean I do not feel anything when people talk to me about their lives.  I get sad, scared, angry, worried, frustrated, and many other emotions that I cannot separate out.  I feel all kinds of emotions, they just never reach my face or my words, most of the time – not even my actions.

I think about the causes.  I think about how to visualize the feelings.  I think about how to keep it from happening again.  I think about how to help the person move forward.

Nothing a person in pain wants to hear about when they are in pain.

They want comfort and support and hugs.  They do not want to know that I visualize their feelings or that they can do x thing to keep it from happening in the future.  Nor do they want to know that xx thing is the next logical step.

I do my best to offer what I can.  I warn people ahead of time when they tell me they need a friend.  I listen.  If I have no words, I will say so.  If all I have to offer is a cliche, I will say so.  Do not expect anything else of me… well maybe some weird art.

It comes out in my art.  All of it.

In the near future you will see some creepier than usual art related to the conversation I had today.

New Year and no Art … yet

Happy first blog post of 2018.
I was not sure what to right about.  The turn of the year was quite interesting…
There were some bad things that happened.  Mostly caused be the poor financial situation I am in right now.  They were expected, and I do not see one of them as being that bad.
I have been applying for creative type jobs.  I am extremely grateful for the job I have, but I would like something a bit more stable, higher pay, and better hours.  Food on the table is great, but I would like to be able to keep the roof over my head also.  Wish me luck!
I took a week off art and the blog (did you notice?)  I wanted to rest up and refresh my view point.  Maybe try to come up with something cool to write about (failed at that.)  I started four paintings, and set up a few small drawings, as experiments of sorts.
I need to come up with something for Valentines day… None of my current ideas get the fire burning so I keep kicking things around my head hoping that one will click and work.
I do not have any solid plans for events this year.  The cool ones that I did last year, have not put out anything for this year (yet) and money is tight.  I would like the creative jobs to help find out what events are available.  Some are hard to find if you do not know where to look.
I should have some art to share on Thursday.
Happy New Year!
May 2018 bring good things, or at the least be better than 2017 was.

The Rain Continues…2017 Review

This year has been… interesting.
January and February were stressful…  It was when I created “The Maw.”
My spouse was forced to resign from his position and he spent most of this time being (in my opinion) unproductive.  I had a lot of anger and frustration from my job also.  A lot of additional responsibilities with out additional pay or staffing.  Not that the pay would have made things better.  I was at my limit anyway, I needed extra man hours.
Either way, I was miserable at work and home.  If I was not painting I was sleeping.  I slept a lot.
March is when I put notice into my full time employer.  I can only stand so much misery.  Either leave my spouse (it was very bad) or leave the job.  Things are scary.  For the second time in my life I was “unemployed” but the first that it was my choice.  This was also the month I started looking for Art groups to be a part of.  Looking back I only did two major works this month.
April saw me excited at the prospect of being free.  It was still scary and stressful.  Trying to get things cleaned up at work for the new person and at home…  I also was getting ready for a show in May.  I did a full sized acrylic painting, the skull experiments and a farewell flower bouquet!  Busy girl!
May: All done at the job.  I never have to go back and work that thankless job ever again.  As crazy and desperate as things are right now, I am so glad I do not have to work there anymore.
I did my first vendor event!  Oddmall Tacoma.
I was a flurry of work to get things ready for the event.  Title pages for my portfolio, making sure I had to much to display, pricing, and color pages.  I even painted a set of cute birds that an awesome friend purchased. (I cannot find the photo of it.)
June and July were also a bit crazy.  I did that awesome jellyfish painting and an Octopus painting (sold.)  I did a few more ink wash paintings and geared up for Art on the Ave in Tacoma with the color-me puzzles and Music and Art in Wright Park.  I also started to work on “motivation Monday” stuff.  In July I also got two commissions!  It was so cool.  I will be working on another commission for the one of those people in 2018.
The worries of not having steady income and my spouse not having a job yet, is starting to bother me.  My spouse and I are selling icecream when we can for a local iceream maker, Viking Feast Icecream.
I also got a part time job at the end of July.  Gotta make ends meet.
PS. I was not happy about it.  I was “unemployed” for less than two months.  It still makes me angry to think about.  I could go on for days about the work balance in my relationship.
August and September is when the dread really set in.  I got a small commission in August and prepped a lot for Music and Art in Wright Park.
This is also the time frame where I had the awesome pleasure of working with a talented artist on a collaboration!  I had started with an idea for an abstract painting for a comic related piece and it just did not go well.
I did a small commission and started getting ready for events that I work. I sold icecream and got laid up because I hurt my back and could not work.
I created a bunch of nerd oriented art for Jet City Comic Show in November.
October… Should have been the best month ever.  Halloween, Inktober and a fun little Halloween event for me to vendor at, and a Friday the 13th.  My spouse was working steady hours, not full time, but steady.  All the makings for an excellent month.
Then my spouse’s best friend committed suicide… a few block from our house. Messed up the whole month.  We did what we had to.  My spouse got fired from his job and the whole emotional mess that comes with losing your best friend…  I think that it is worse than losing a family member.  You do not get to pick those, but you pick your friends (just try not to pick their noses *hahaha.*)
October and November were really just horrible, terrible, and no good.
In November and December I did not work much, just art.  The job that I work at has its slow time during the holidays.  I made enough to pay the utility bills.  I also did a few small events and sold some art that helped pay a few more small bills.
I had art on display at a restaurant in Fremont, Washington.  It was exciting to see my art on a wall that was not mine.  I also was at Jet City Comic Show as a guest of Terra Crux Games.
I spent most of the November and December coloring Inktober drawings and cursing my spouses best friend.
It has been a long time since $400 felt like a lot of money.  I was a teenager when that last happened.  My first pay check was $281.64 in the mid 90’s.  I felt so rich.
Now I hope I get that much so I can make sure we have light, food, and heat.
I am also frustrated with “the system.”  A person who has worked their butt off since they were old enough to work, cannot get help.  There is virtually no one who is around to help my family (no kids) keep the house and pay the bills, during this bad year we have had.
A person who has only worked long enough to ensure they get state and federal benefits can easily get “assistance” for housing, food, and bills.
I do not understand it.
This is the last post of the year.
A summary of what I have done.
I look toward 2018 with hope.
I am an eternal optimist.


Almost Christmas!

Christmas is three days away!
I bet the young and young at heart are excited.
The Holiday season is hard for lots of people.  We remember friends and family that have past.  You might be one of the many that are in a seasonal relationship or not in a relationship.
Make sure everyone feels the love of the season, so give your Scroogy friends a big hug and invite them over (if you can.)  The invitation means a lot even if you are sure they will decline.  Who knows, they might surprise you!
Today I have lots of art to share.
First it is Time-Lapse Thursday.  A new video is available to watch on my Youtube channel, or you can watch it below.  Santa has come to town!
Next up is these two Christmas wreaths I did.
One is creepy and the other less so.
The first one has metallic gold paint for the background.  It looks very nice in person.  It has a good feeling of depth.
The second has a gold leaf background.  It also looks better in person.  The gold leaf does take over the image though.  I will not be using it as a background anytime soon.  It is definitely better as an accent.  It is extremely shiny though.
I will not be making prints of the second one.  The gold leaf just does not photograph or scan very well (as you can see.)  The creepy wreath will be available next year.  Maybe I can do a Christmas in July thing. hmmmm….
I am already starting to plan new things for 2018 and trying to figure out what shows and events I want to do. (Gotta get a new business licences first.)
Merry Christmas!

An Anime List

I was not sure what to write about today, so I thought I would write about something I enjoy that is NOT art related.  I do like things other than art.  I love books, movies (OK horror movies,) cartoons, tea, games, new socks, baths, and anime.

I enjoy anime quite a lot.

I was first exposed to it when I lived in Alaska in my early teens. Even then I liked to stay up quite late and I would end up watching some crazy things on TV at 2am. It was super cool! Spaceships, crazy hair, new stories and drawing styles that I had never seen. I was seeing images Sci-Fi book gave me on TV! So cool.

I do not remember the name of the first one I saw, I remember it took place in space and the people were very elongated (tall and skinny.) It made a huge impression on me.

I have three criteria that I judge almost all visual entertainment by.

  1.  Story content
  2. Telling style
  3. Visuals

If you blow me away on two of the three I will consider the video good. There are very few are 3 for 3 and these are the ones that I remember and want to keep.

For example Rojan: the Robbers Daughter. Cute story and told okay, but OMG the visuals drove me bananas. Bouncing between 2d and 3d and the hair.. .what the heck. I thought the hair was bad, but then they bust out fur shawls and the details on those were really distracting. It was still OK, 2 of 3 is good.  I only remember it because I just watched it and my spouse and I had some conversations about the animation.

Here is a list of anime that made an impression on me. Most are older, some are new, some are popular and some are obscure, so obscure they are hard to find.  I have not seen some of these since I first watched them.  I watched Chobits while in the military, 14-16 years ago…  And it still sticks with me.

They are not in any order, more as I remember them.

  1. Chobits – really interesting and trippy. It is slow so buckle down.
  2. Fruits Basket – another slow one, but it gets you in the feels.
  3. Paranoid Agent – weird. Watch the whole thing. I was watching this as it was released on TV and I missed a few episodes, this made it really confusing.
  4. Paprika – this is a movie, hard to get as it is out of print (so to speak.) Another weird one (do you see a theme developing yet?) This movie was the inspiration for the Cell and Inception movies.
  5. Perfect Blue – while thinking about movies, this one is really cool. A up and coming actress gets her first stalker. I love way the story was told, you get so caught up in the girl’s life that you end up as confused as she is.
  6. Mushishi – I love this. The stories are excellent and the animation is gorgeous. I wish there was more as I want to know more about the protagonist.
  7. Mahoutsukai no Yome (the Magnus’ Bride) – This one is so exciting, and it is new! I have a hard time finding new stuff I like. They all seem to be shallow action flicks. Not this one.
  8. Mardock Scramble – another hard to find one. It is actually three movies (first, second and third exhaust.) I saw the first in 2014 and had to search for the second (they started release in 2013.) I had to wait a whole year for the last installment.  I remembered to keep looking for that whole year, that is how awesome it is.
  9. Gankutsuou: The Count of Monte Cristo – The story for this one is fairly well known, but the animation designs are so cool. They add a totally different level to the visuals of the story. Almost everything is moving. I have watched it several times and I get hypnotized every time.
  10. Metropolis: This movie blew my mind. I was crying and just amazed. The animation style was in such contrast with the heavy subject matter. Since I have watched two versions of the black and white live action movie, but the anime will always be the one that blows my mind.
  11. Ghost in the Shell – This movie should not be a surprise to anyone. The theme on my list is either amazing visuals or existentialist. Ghost in the Shell is defiantly both. The animation is so clean and interesting and the story makes you question who you are.
  12. Lupin the 3rd – This is a TV show, manga, AND a series of movies. This has been going since 1967! It is 50 years old this year. I was amazed. The older movies (The Mystery of Mamo and Castle of Cagliostro) were done in the 1970’s and you would be hard pressed to tell, based off the story. The animation tells you, but you would still not think 70’s. I really enjoy all the interesting cultural differences that show up in this. Watching all the movies kind of tell you what was important during the generation they were created in. In the latest one, Goemon Ishikawa’s Spray of Blood Lupin and the gang get drunk and stoned, in the past all they did was smoke cigarettes.

The are so many more that I cannot remember the names of. I hunt down new anime from time to time. I am about to check out Inuyaskiki (apparently an older man gets turned into a combat robot. This should be neat.)

I have watched all the “classics” Cowboy Bebop, Vampire Hunter D, Macross, Bubble Gum Crisis, Hellsing, Full Metal Alchemist, D. Gray Man, .Hack, Howl’s Moving Castle, almost everything from Studio Ghibli plus hundreds of others. I have many of the full length anime on DVD or on a hard drive some where.

I am always looking for more anime to watch (or manga to read) so leave your suggestions!