Julia… In Concert!

So Julia’s Spring Band Concert was held at her school Thursday, and for the first time in – well, years – I was able to attend. Julia continued the tradition of Kyle and Erik, who both played for the school band. Kyle played trombone and Erik played drums.

Julia followed Erik with drums, and she is rather good at it.

It’s amazing how she can juggle so many activities – band, karate, dance, teaching herself to play guitar – and be pretty impressive at them all.

Princess P was very happy that I was able to attend, and she played out of her mind. Besides drums, she also played the triangle and the cymbal.

The band played four songs, including the Jurassic Park theme and Danny Boy. I posted the other two songs below, because she liked how she played the drum better than the others.

Continue reading “Julia… In Concert!”

It’s Rock Opera Sunday

So, as I mentioned a few days ago, Julia was given an acoustic guitar by my brother-in-law about two months ago. Julia went wild for it, and since she already plays the drums in the school band, figuring out the chords was not very difficult. It makes me very happy because my mother was a piano player, and it’s nice to see Julia continuing with music.

For the last two months, she has been sitting in her room, practicing online. There are a few internet sites which will show you how to play almost any song. Julia’s favorite band is Queen, but lately she has been drawn to rock, heavy metal and grunge. She has been tinkering with many songs, but Julia believes her best work is Master of Puppets from Metallica.

I’ve been begging her to play something on camera for the blog, and yesterday she agreed. Obviously, Master of Puppets sounds better on an electric guitar, but I think she does a great job. The song is eight minutes long, so I stopped her at four minutes.

I know this is not a big Metallica crowd, but the original song is above the video. Enjoy!

Two months. All self-taught, with some help from Uncle Mike.

Mortal Kanvas

It’s been a while since I posted any of Julia’s art, mostly because she is too busy with school, Krav Maga – her junior black belt test is coming up – dance, and drum practice to take some time to create amazing things. You may remember a while ago when Julia’s sensei sent the actor/martial artist who played Scorpion in the original Mortal Kombat film a drawing of his character. He sent Julia a bunch of swag afterward.

Julia finally watched the film in full – and watches it at every opportunity. She decided Johnny Cage – played by Linden Ashby – is her second favorite character, and she decided to paint a screenshot of Cage/Ashby standing in a forest before meeting Scorpion.

This is the screenshot she decided to paint… (Click the photo to embiggen.)

This is how it turned out…

The shadow on the left is the back of Scorpion’s head.

I’m obviously biased, but I think this is her best painting yet. The shadowing is very good, the scale isn’t too off, and the only thing which bothered her were Cage’s eyes. She couldn’t get them as perfect as she wanted.

Not bad for a 12-year old. I’m really very proud of her.

No Business Like Snow Business

So you may have heard the northeast got hit with some snow this week. It was a three-day thriller of snow, wind, and… snow. In the end, my garbage city earned about eight inches – Phrasing! – and most of the people here lost their ability to drive a car. And they needed a car so they could make French toast. Everyone in PA runs to the store at the first flake to buy bread, eggs, and milk.

Any hoo, Kevin and Julia decided to make the best of things, and after shoveling – Dad can’t because of this stupid shoulder – they created some pretty cool lawn ornaments. At the far left is the Roman Coliseum. Julia’s teacher students would get extra credit if they made snow replicas of ancient historic places. In the center is Kevin and Julia’s snowman, which stands at least five feet tall. Finally, on the right is their snow pillar, which is pushing six feet tall. Julia wants to make it taller with the leftover snow.

Below is Julia’s giant snowball. She made it in the backyard, and decided Daddy should move it out front so she can make another snowman. The route I would have had to take is close to thirty yards, and this thing weighed a ton. I eventually got it onto a plank, but I wasn’t able to drag it across the snow. Julia wants me to try again tomorrow, but it ain’t happening.

Her young, strong brothers also gave this a hard pass, so it’ll likely be outside until June.

Clay More

The majority of Princess P’s Christmas can be summarized as such: the bulk of her gifts were Bob Ross t-shirts and a comforter, a crap ton of art supplies – including canvasses and brushes, clay, etc. What she did not receive – yet – is her Jazza’s Jazzy Art Box. The box was supposed to be here by Christmas, but it’s being shipped by the USPS; so naturally, it’s three weeks late and counting.

Princess P is really upset about the delay, but she steered her frustration toward her new mounds of clay. The other day, she decided to create something with clay and molded up this clay gargoyle.

It took her a while, and there was some frustration, but I think it came out very well.

Head For The Mountains

So while me and the missus were at work Sunday morning, Julia decided to create another painting. She went with a mountain scene, similar to her first one from last December. She really liked that piece, and I thought it was amazing.

She does not like this one. At all.

She hates how the trees on the left came out, she doesn’t like the clouds, and said the paintbrushes she used were not conducive for good leaves. She was a complete wreck when I got home, so I reminded her we could always use her white paint, go over this painting and start anew.

But, because she’s Princess P, she said I could post it on the blog. It’s not her best work, but I think it’s not the worst thing she’s ever done. She is going to try to touch up the left side trees with some color, and see what happens.

The girl is only eleven and she’s already turning into an angsty artist.

Pearls Of Wisdom

So yesterday was busy at the Earp Ranch. I started the day work shift, Mrs. Earp took Erik to a lacrosse tournament in Maryland, so the house was occupied by a sleepy Kyle, Kevin, and Princess P. Princess P and Kevin are old enough to fend for themselves via lunch, etc., but you always the worst can happen. After a few hours with no phone calls, I assumed everything was fine.

It was.

When I came home, Julia ran out of the house to greet me. She was holding something behind her back, then she showed me what she was doing all day. She was watching a Bob Ross video on YouTube and painting The Girl with the Pearl Earring.

I have to admit, I think she really nailed it.

You can see the painting close up below the fold…

Continue reading “Pearls Of Wisdom”

Inktober Part Twelve

Well, it took a little over a month, but Julia has finally finished her Inktober challenge. There were thirty-one days of prompts and Princess P stepped up to the challenge.

Yes, there were days when she was less than enthusiastic, but overall she enjoyed the challenge and the work which came along with it.

So, without further ado, Princess P’s final two pieces.

Day Thirty’s prompt is “Onimous,” and I think Julia had a difficult time with this prompt because she wasn’t exactly sure what the word meant. She struggled to find an example for the challenge, and finally settled on an ominous storm.

Day Thirty-One’s prompt is “Crawl,” and Julia was stressing herself because she wanted the last prompt to be the best prompt. I told her it didn’t have to be perfect, just something she liked. She decided to go with the Halloween motif, and drew a legless zombie crawling after her.

The look on her face is priceless.

Thank you all for your patience with Inktober. I wanted to showcase Julia’s talent throughout the month because I think she has done some truly impressive work.

Inktober Part Eleven

Today is the official end to Inktober, the ink drawing challenge Julia joined, and after thirty-one days, she’s almost finished. She’ll have the final two pieces ready tomorrow, because a cold and homework slowed her down a little. And here we go..

Day Twenty-Seven’s prompt is “Music,” and she used a character from “The Greatest Showman” for this one. I think it’s her best work in this challenge and it made me very proud of her and her work.

I really think it’s her best work so far.

Day Twenty-Eight’s prompt is “Float,” and Julia imagined herself peacefully floating through space with Mother Earth by her side.

Day Twenty-Nine’s prompt is “Shoes,” and I think is her funniest piece yet. While looking for her shoes, both come to life, chase her down the hallway, trying to eat her feet.

The last two prompts will be posted tomorrow.

Inktober Part Ten

Julia’s Inktober challenge is almost finished, and while she’s a few days backed up, she created two pieces for us today.

Yesterday she had homework, band practice (over Zoom) and dance practice but was determined to get these done.

She wanted to do three, but I told her homework was more important. She should have three tomorrow and we should be able to finish up Sunday.

Day Twenty-Five’s prompt is “Buddy,” and Julia drew man’s best friend. While me and Mrs. Earp had dogs growing up, it wasn’t the best choice for us now since some of our kids are very allergic to dog hair.

I forgot to ask her what the “T” tag meant, but her teacher’s dog is named Teess.

Day Twenty-Six’s prompt is “Hide,” and Julia created a work of hide and seek starring herself and her brother Kevin. I thought this one came out looking great.