Monday, September 24, 2018

Halloween!


Two posts within days from me, Blogger won't know what to think!  But I said I was heading off after my last post to decorate for Halloween, and indeed I did.




I love transforming my house at this time of year - I think I love it even more than Christmas, just because the time of year itself is such a huge relief at the end of a hot summer, and this year particularly when my family not far away were repeatedly threatened with evacuation (and once, actually evacuated) due to fires from record-breaking heat. 

My friend Val made me these felted wool gourd guys - aren't they fantastic? I was so excited to get them out this year for the first time. I should have taken a picture of the back of the green one too - he's got the cutest butt crack!




And speak of being excited to get something out, this papier-mache jack o lantern at the top was a Christmas present from my Mom last year - it's the real thing, very old, which is hard to find since most got destroyed over the years, especially since they didn't have battery powered candles back in the day!




My husband surprised me with this transformation, below. This guy normally has a lovely face and is carrying a crusade flag (the piece is titled "Personal Crusade"), so he put a black hood over his face and made an ax for him - I couldn't figure out what on earth he was doing that he needed to borrow red paint. He's pretty proud, and deservedly so!



This is a cabinet in my bathroom.



I love the old beat up wind-up lion below, but he's in such bad shape that I think he's only appropriate for Halloween!



Sunday, September 23, 2018

I painted something!



I thought I'd forgotten how. To make a long story short, I wasn't feeling well for many months, I just focused on making it through work, then came home and laid on the couch. Even when I started feeling better, I'd somehow lost the habit and the confidence to go into my studio and create. And when I thought about it, I had no idea what I would even want to create, where to begin. I just kept putting it off.  

But my sister, who loves the ocean so much, and her husband recently got a used motor home so that they can go camping at the ocean, and I wanted to make her a "trailer-warming" gift for it, so I finally had the motivation I needed to make something. And you know what, I really enjoyed it. All it took was deciding to make something, and just starting. Hopefully I'll start creating more, although I do have some very busy weekends ahead, so I'm not quite sure when.

We did do some camping this summer in the canned ham (otherwise known as Lil Stella), the longest being a week at Big Sur. Such a gorgeous area of the California coast. 





There's a waterfall falling directly onto this beach, it's kind of hidden in the shade. It's just stunning in person, I didn't touch the colors in this pic at all.




Okay, now I'm off to decorate for Halloween, because Hallelujah, it's Fall! It's still warm right now, but Fall is definitely in the air, and there's no time of year I love more...

Monday, December 18, 2017

Where did it go?

I just saw that my last post was Nov. 3rd, and now it's a week until Christmas. Not sure how that happened. Well, I kind of do. Nov. 17th was the Christmas vintage show I'd been working on, and preparing for that was consuming all my spare time, not to mention my mental energy. I just don't do them often enough to be casual about them. Here are some pics I took before the show started and the chaos began!








It went well, but what a relief to have it over with!  

After that my focus turned to waiting for, and then being in San Francisco for a scary surgery my sister had to have. I'm so grateful that it went well, we couldn't have received a better Christmas present. It's so good to be home again, and it looks like my sister will be home in time for Christmas as well, and I couldn't be more grateful. Things like this certainly put things in perspective, even more so at this time of year.

I hope you all have a happy and healthy Christmas with your loved ones!






Friday, November 3, 2017

Busy busy....

Nothing like a deadline to ramp up the Studio time!  It would be nice if I could maintain a regular studio habit rather than my long periods of drought followed by a deluge of sudden productivity. But having a reason to create, a goal to get my butt in gear seems to make the difference for me.  

I had the hardest time getting a decent picture of this, it's kind of a shadow box, with little doors that open and close over the front glass. I've had it for a few years, it was a gift and I was always saving it for something special. I've also been hoarding the little sheep, they're very old and wonderful, but when I experimentally put them in there I suddenly saw a manger scene, or creche, and there was no going back.



I've also been making jewelry to try and sell at the upcoming show. 
This one below is a mosaic made from the stamp on the back of a plate like the one shown with it. Sometimes I like the back of old dishes better than the front.


This one is kind of  hard to see but there's an old St. Nick image there.




This is an image transfer of a copy of an earlier piece of mine onto an old ledger page, with encaustic wax over it.



We went camping last weekend, and I actually used my little art kit I made to keep in the trailer, for the first time. I thought ahead and brought a copy of an old French document that I have (I briefly considered using the original, but just couldn't do it), and spent hours drawing and painting and shading. It was very relaxing.


I love this beautiful old writing.


Here was the view from the table at our campsite as I was drawing.  Ah the smell of pine trees!








Wednesday, October 18, 2017

It may be Halloween in the rest of my house...






But in my studio it's Christmas!




Working to prepare for a show called Noel meant diving into Christmas before my mind was ready to go there, but I started having fun.



  I bore out an old little wood buoy for this one (well, in all honesty I had my husband do it).





Fortunately everything for the show doesn't have to be Christmas themed...



Lastly we went to an event called Pumpkin Nights last night, where you walk through themed displays with thousands of carved pumpkins. Below are some of my favorites:

Huge snake in the Chinese themed area, with hundreds of chinese lanterns made from pumpkins as well


 A Pirates of the Caribbean theme below

I loved the detail of this underwater sea diver


Leaves in the garden themed area


Loved this fox


Monday, September 25, 2017

Ah, Halloween



Fall is in the air - my favorite time of year.  And as soon as I sense it, cooler mornings, a falling leaf or two, I'm ready to decorate for Halloween.  So yes, my house is all decked out inside, and I had a spot where I wanted something Halloweeny to hang, so I decided to make something.



The two pieces are attached to make one long piece. I had a lot of fun putting these together, and even got out my encaustic wax equipment - I forgot how much I love transforming things with wax.




My Mom bought me this crow (pre-hardware) with something like this in mind for me to sort of steampunk him up. She'd seen one done and knew I had enough of a collection of bits and bobs to give it a go. My studio was a mess after going through everything trying to find just the right pieces, not to mention unearthing my hot glue gun, but he was worth it.


This is a much smaller version of a film cannister mailing container like the one from my last post, this time it's the front side. I loved how it's mailing address label looks like a frame.


I've been playing some more with image transfers of my previous work. This one is done on a piece of birch bark, and then glued into an old grater.


Another image transfer, on this old clipboard I found.


And last but not least, my new studio desk lamp. I've been desperately in need of one, but just couldn't seem to pull the trigger on any new ones I'd seen. Then when I saw this one I knew what I'd been waiting for. Old, full of character, completely positionable with a really small footprint, incredibly heavy so it won't knock over - it's perfect!  Well, as long as I don't accidentally touch the metal shade when it's on, surface of the sun is about what I'd compare it to...