Thursday, January 20, 2022

Rain's Thursday Art Date: Winter Sports


It's Thursday, which means it's time to join Rain's Thursday Art Date, which this week is Winter Sports.  I can think of lots of winter sports.  After all, the Olympics will be here in a few weeks.  But for me, the only winter sport I actually LOVE is basketball.  Every year during the All Star Game, I make art while watching the game.

This is what I wrote for 2012:

Let me walk you through my weekend, as I describe it and the book made from ATC sized pages (2.5 X 3.5 inches).

On Thursday, I watched the Wheelchair Challenge. I was quite impressed with the men (yep, all men) who used their basketball skills while negotiating their wheelchairs. Says something for and about the disabled!

On Friday, I started with the All-Star Celebrity Game, which had no time outs, except for quarters and commercials. The time clock continued even when free throws were shot. It just goes to show, "Celebs" get preferential treatment.
Continuing on Friday night, I watched the All-Star Rising Star Challenge. I admit, I love the fast break, and this game was full of them. It was non-stop and very fast paced from beginning to end, so none of this standing around, passing the ball around the perimeter for 24 seconds like in some boring basketball games.  This was the front cover from that 2012 weekend.
This is the back.  I used all my "E's" on the front and had to turn an extra "F" into an "E" on the back. I also used all my "2s." And even though they don't look it, the stars on both the front and back are shiny gold.

I'll share one final entry and the words I wrote from 2020:

Many of you know that I'm a basketball freak fan.  My team of choice has always been, and will always be, the Lakers.  I also realize many of you are going to say you don't watch sports or you don't watch basketball, but please bear with me through this post.  It's a tribute that I hope will help heal.

Having said all that, I have two pages today for you.  I always create something during the All-Star Weekend that runs from Friday through Sunday every year in February.  Players on each of the 30 teams receive fan votes.  Those best-of-the-best players with the most votes are picked to be in the All-Star Game on Sunday.  This year was special for several reasons.  It was about tributes, including two very important people who influenced the NBA (National Basketball Association).  One of course, was Kobe Bryant.  The other was David Stern, shown in the lower photo, preparing to hand Kobe Bryant the MVP award one year.

For this spread, I started with a page on which I originally painted a black heart.  I wanted this page to appear solemn, sober, and dark, with lots of black to signify mourning.  The gold stars gave the only hint of color and decoration.  This page was definitely a tribute to losing Kobe and David.

The second spread was the bright and colorful tributes given to these greats.  It also honored the All-Star Weekend.  The purple and yellow reflect the colors of the Lakers uniforms.

Friday evening was the All-Star Celebrity Game.   This year was all about Chicago.  It was mostly rappers, but there were a few celebs, a few actors (one from Chicago PD tv show), two WNBA players, and one team owner (Milwaukee Bucks).  Needless to say, the home team won.

The Rising Stars Challenge features a group of standout first-year players or Rookies, against a group of standout second-year players known as Sophomores.  Since 2015, the game is now divided among players from the USA versus players from around the world.  What that means is, if the chosen player was born in the states, he will be on Team USA, whether he's a rookie or a sophomore.  If the player was born outside the USA, he is on Team World.  Regardless, all players are members of NBA teams and are selected through voting by the NBA’s assistant coaches.

Many of us aren't fond of the new "us" versus "them" format and prefer to pit the rookies against the sophomores.  This year the final score was Team USA 151, Team World 131.

Now to explain the teams and the scores of the All-Star Game, the final event of the three day celebration.

The new format was a little confusing on paper, but made sense once I saw it in action. The score was reset after each quarter, and the team that won each quarter received a $100,000 charity bonus. Team LeBron won the first quarter, Team Giannis took the second, and the third ended in an out-of-our-seats thrilling tie.
I was amazed at the amount of fouls called, free throws taken, and even several challenges and reviews of plays.  This was unheard of in previous All Star games.  Usually, the referees are there as mere courtesy, like to hand the ball to the player for inbounding.  Not so this game.  This was like the seventh game of a world championship and the game was played with the same intensity.   
The total score of the game at the end of three quarters was 133-124 in favor of Team Giannis. Rather than having a traditional 12-minute game clock, the two teams played to 157, which was 24 more points than the leading team, a tribute to Kobe Bryant (and his jersey number).  At first, I wasn't sure this idea would work.

Then pure magic took over.  Instead of seeing a lot of player grandstanding, the crowd (and I) loved it.  We saw the world’s best basketball players actually compete and play defense against each other.  This was 10 alpha males who are usually the leaders of their respective teams, playing together and against their opponents.  It brought excitement to an event that many believe usually grows old in the opening 10 minutes. For once players cared.  So did the crowd.  So did I.  Now that I've seen how the system works, I hope they keep this same format in the future.  It was a nail biter till the final second.  The final score? Team LeBron 157, Team Giannis 155.

For this page, I wanted color and brightness, unlike the previous page which implied mourning.  I began by laying down yellow and purple watercolor pencils on a substrate of 110 lb card stock.   I created the yellow and purple hearts using acrylic craft paint.  From there all images came from the internet.  Since I only have black ink (inkjet printer) and black toner (laser printer), I knew it would be foolish to try to color in the uniforms.  Instead, I added dye ink around each of the computer generated sentiments.  To pull both spreads together, I added three gifted stars (thanks Jeanie) to the mix.

I have one final entry I called We were the champions.  Here's what I wrote back in 2017:

If you've visited my blog for any length of time at all, you know I'm a HUGE fan of the Lakers, a basketball team in the Western Conference in the U.S.  If you are new to my blog, the fact they were once the champions, but now are in the bottom of the barrel, makes no difference to me.  I will still love them forever.

This story is fairly self explanatory.  This is a photo I took in Los Angeles one year back in the late 1980s when they truly were the champions. 

I'm not quite sure which year this was taken, but I was either working in or visiting Los Angeles for several years in the mid to late 1980s when

the Lakers were at the top of their game.  As you can see, this was taken in LA at the Forum, their old home.

For this spread, I began by spritzing some of my handmade shimmering mists onto a used file folder.  While the file folder was drying, I dyed two bits of lace purple and yellow.  I sewed those to a piece of my left over sun dyed fabric.  I glued the lace to the file folder, then added the real photograph I found as I was cleaning my basement.  To that, I added the words and the three plastic embellishments.

The Lakers will always be my champions, and I have a great deal of memorabilia and many of their autographs to prove it, too.  I even have a purple and gold striped authentic NBA Lakers jacket that I no longer wear.

All art was created by me and the photo was taken by me at a basketball game back in the late 1980s.

Thank you beyond belief for stopping by.  I am truly grateful to you, my dear friends, followers, readers, and lurkers for visiting.  Please also join Bleubeard and me at Rain's Thursday Art Date.   Bleubeard wants me to teach Squiggles the rules of basketball so he can be benched for fouling out.

13 thoughtful remarks:

Iris Flavia said...

Braunschweig is in first league in Basketball as well and their training place is just around the corner.
Think you would love it. Always funny. Most have sponsored VW+ cars and they still seem not to fit into those ;-)
I once trained with some of them in a fitness studio - I am small, it was crazy. Nice guys and wow, to play this from wheelchairs... respect.

I have to admit... American Football is rather my thing, I haven´t seen a game of our basketball guys,also I don´t know the rules - you sure do know, LOL!
Yes, you are a huge fan!
And you stick to them, they need people you you and maybe they become the Champions again!

Dirk Nowitzki made basketball a bit better known here and he still pops up in funny TV-ads. A very nice guy.

Great homages you created!

Elephant's Child said...

I am not a sport fan (of virtually any flavour). I am always blown away by the passion and skill that people with disabilities bring to the game though.

Divers and Sundry said...

I'm a big fan of the Olympics. I don't watch much basketball, but I do enjoy it when I do. Right now I'm focused on the current Sumo tournament ;)

Jeanie said...

This is really interesting to me, especially because I do like basketball far more than any of the other big team sports. I've always liked two teams most -- the Boston Celtics and the L.A. Lakers. (I had a mega-crush on Larry Bird and still have a lot of memorabilia from those times.) But I was very conflicted because Lansing's own Magic Johnson, whom I followed since his days at Michigan State, and Bird were rivals!

Magic used to conduct summer basketball camps in town and they would have an all-star game as a fundraiser. I remember sitting on the courtside floor watching people like Shaquille O'Neal, Charles Barclay and Isiah Thomas fight it out on the court. I think I might still have photos somewhere but I haven't been able to find them yet. Good days! (I like your art pieces, too!)

EricaSta said...

I couldn't say something to sports... but I like your artwork.

Have a wonderful week.

Christine said...

I didn't know you were a basketball fan!

My name is Erika. said...

I know you love basketball, and if I didn't know you did, I would now. Smile. It is a fast paced game and good for some winter viewing, that's for sure. I went to a school basketball game a few years ago, and it was very tight at the end so it made for a exciting time. It seems so long ago with covid though. Nice art today and I enjoyed your photo too. Hope your week is going well. Hugs-Erika

Gillena Cox said...

Enjoy your share today.
Happy you dropped by my blog. Sorry you couldnt view the you tube video from my post

Much love...

Caty said...

Great post Elizabeth ! Love the atcs design, and your art journaling is amazing. I´ve learnt a lot about basketball.
I wish you a very nice Friday, and send big hugs

Leigh said...

Definitely a winter sport. I love your collages! And thank you for taking the time to visit both of my blogs!

DVArtist said...

A fabulous post and you nailed the theme perfectly. Have a wonderful day today.

NatureFootstep said...

yes, you like that sport :)

Rain said...

Hi Elizabeth! Your love of basketball sounds like my former love of hockey! I was such a fan for so many years. I guess I lost interest around the time I didn't replace my television! Great pieces dedicated to the sport that brings you so much joy!! ♥