As I look back over the last year I am surprised. I wouldn’t have guessed I would be able to record so many things. I suppose this is why I do this sort of reflection, to have a chance to look back and remember. This has been a difficult year in many ways. It has been a year of loss but also reunification. I lost my dad in March. I also gained unexpected time with loved ones. I have spent more time in reflection and oddly enough I spent a lot of time thinking about trees. I read about trees, drew trees, I even planted a tree. Trees span the generations and are used to mark the time. Maybe in 2023 I’ll write some words about that.
- I continued to tinker with site speed optimizations (with only marginal success) even though I told myself there were other things to do.
- I created an SVG illustration for the homepage of this site. I used Adobe Fresco to draw, Figma and VSCode to edit, and SVGO to optimize. Since it‘s an SVG and it’s rendered inline, colors can be applied to match the light or dark theme with CSS custom properties.
- I reworked the Art section of this site a few times to use the Cloudinary API and Zapier to publish images, later I added dedicated pages.
- Run Log: This site now outputs a page for each running activity with the help of Eleventy Permalinks. But, as of 12/17/2022 the feed provided by Garmin returns a 402 Payment Required response, so that’s annoying.
Tools & Setup
- Speaking of Eleventy, I am also a proud supporter.
- I use Obsidian for notes every day. I even use it as a makeshift CMS to compose notes and weeknotes on this site with the use of templates and daily notes. More than once this year it has come to my rescue when I needed to remember a conversation or something that happened months ago.
- Earlier this year I deleted Facebook, but that was the easy one, I only logged in a few times a year.
- I backed up my tweets, set my account to private and no longer log in.
- I created a Mastodon account as this is what others did but I would rather spend more time here, without all the distractions.
- I am using RSS again. There is far more signal and less noise than social. It feels a lot better.
- “Working software over comprehensive documentation” has helped remove massive barriers to getting work done.
- Since April or May I have worked furiously on a front-end component library to support a tech stack conversion.
- I really enjoy the ability to move quickly and help upgrade an unmanageable front-end codebase to a modern architecture. We are making big strides towards this end—something unimaginable just a year ago.
- I learned to author Web Components with StencilJS and Typescript.
- I spent more time with Storybook to document and publish the components.
- Since March of 2020 I have worked from home. My “home office” has moved several times, ultimately landing in a room previously used for storage. This year I have slowly relocated some of the items in that room and tried to make a more permanent place. In October I began to frame up walls and add lights to make this space more usable. In December the walls were finished and I moved into my new space.
- My home office is not as much as an office as a studio. I am not one to put a high emphasis on tools or spaces but I am excited to have a dedicated place for work (and messes).
- I have made more drawings this year but still not nearly what I would like. I am most pleased with a drawing called “Portrait of Louise-Antoinette Feuardent” Study rendered digitally with Adobe Fresco on my iPad.
- I spent some time reading about Jean-François Millet in a book called Peasant and Painter by his close friend Alfred Sensier. The book led to a few drawing studies of his work.
- I purchased Rendering In Pencil by Arthur L. Guptill, and Pencil Broadsides by Theodore Kautzky from the Trinidad Colorado Library Bookstore. I can’t believe my luck—to have found both in such a random place. Anything by Kautzky is difficult to find.
- Around Christmas I also bought Pencil Pictures and Painting Trees & Landscapes in Watercolor also by Kautzky. I look forward to these.
- I studied Drawing The Head and Hands by Andrew Loomis. I wish I’d been introduced to him 20 years ago.
- I made giclée prints of a drawing called “Cardinal.”
- I attended an auction of work by my dad’s good friend, Ray Frederick.
- Working from home helped with running again in 2022. I usually have enough time during lunch to run three or four miles.
- I added workouts in September, including hills and track work. That lasted about a month until the cold weather hit.
- I ran two races this year. The Grand Blue Mile in April and the local WHAMM 5K in September.
- Vertigo returned again in December so I took more time off.
- I averaged 13.6 miles per week for the year (6.4 miles/week in 2021). I ran 100 miles in June and September.