Friday, April 12, 2013

Retirement...What to do, what to do.

Okay, I am twelve days into retirement.  How's it going, you may ask.  It's going very well, thank you very much.  What do  you do all day, you may ask.  Whatever I want, thank you very much.  Some people seem to believe that they absolutely must be just as busy during retirement as they were during their working years, otherwise they must be wasting their time.  The truth is, you are free to waste a little time if you choose.  You can pursue interests that you didn't have the time to pursue while you were working.  One thing I intend to to is to pursue drawing and sketching.  As an architect, I had some basic drawing skills, but nothing to really brag about.  The introduction of computerized drawing, including 3D renderings has all but made the hand drawn sketch a lost art.  I never really mastered CAD, since I was already in management when it became a necessity in our profession.  I haven't drawn or sketched much of anything in years.  Retirement will allow me to return to some of those roots.  Trust me, I'm going to start pretty simple, and will probably never graduate to anything too complex.

While I was never very good at placing people, cars, and other entourage in my design sketches, I could always add enough landscape material to make the design interesting.  This sketch took about thirty minutes and is a mix of color pencils and markers.  Right now, the pencils and the markers are cheap.  When I get better, I'll purchase better tools.  You just have to understand, this activity is for my own personal enjoyment, so I don't really care if I have the highest quality tools.  However, there is a distinct difference between the Crayola pencils that you can buy 50 assorted colors for $4.99 at Walmart, and the Prismacolor pencils at Hobby Lobby that are $12.99 for 18 colors.  The same is true for markers.  You get what you pay for.
Recently I have discovered an new-to-me art form.  It's called Zentangle.  Basically, it's controlled doodling.  That's right up my alley.  I have been a doodler since I was a kid.  I always had a note pad next to the phone, not for taking messages, but for doodling while I was talking.  Zentangle has gotten me to return to the idea of thinking about design, shape, pattern, etc.  I did my first Zentangle a week ago.  It looked like this.
It's a pretty crude attempt at being creative, but it was a start and it was something that I really like doing.  You can do one square, or one circle.  You can freestyle the shape, it really doesn't matter.  I now spend about an hour each morning in this activity.  Over the past week my sketches have gotten more complex and hopefully more interesting.

Right now I am only working in black and white.  I have purchased some higher quality pens for this work.  You don't want to use a Sharpie because it will bleed through the paper and a Flair will bleed on you.  Sooner or later I will probably start using some color, but I really find the black and white designs fun.  If you want to know more about this art form you can simply Google "Zentangles".  If you have a Pinterest account, just search Zentangles and you will find some amazing examples.  That's all for now.  Have a blessed week-end.


  1. I knew you would embrace retirement. It's just they way you roll. I've been retired for over 10 years and I can't imagine having to go back to work. I'm busy, but busy with things I love to do. Hubby says he's getting tired of all his volunteering and he is. He needs to back off, but I don't see how he can do that.

    I love all your drawings. I'm not interested in doing this type of thing, but I'll enjoy what you do.

    Have a blessed weekend too. :)

  2. Thanx for sharing your drawings - they all look pretty good to me! You talented people make me sick... ;)

  3. A little wasting time after hustling bustling sounds good to me. I'm going to have to check out this Zentangle thing.

  4. My folks seem to be as busy in retirement as they were when they were still working. They like it that way for now. But they also know when to turn off the world and relax. Looks like you have that skill also.

  5. I love that you accept that you are free to "waste" your time in any way you please now that you are retired. It is great that you are finding these artistic ways to express your specific talents.

  6. Good for you. Your passions will make you so much more than you ever knew you could be.

    May God Bless your life

  7. Really beautiful!
    And I'm glad to see that you have changed your Header photo from The Recliner Chair to a Boat!
    Happy Retirement!
    Lea's Menagerie