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...

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Back in the Studio

Remember how I used to actually create art?  The only studio time I've spent for quite a while is for jewelry, and not much of that. And of course the grand distraction of a canned ham, Miss Lil Stella, didn't help.  But I spent most of last weekend in the studio (too hot to go outside, that helped).  I gave myself a motivational kick in the butt by committing to participate in a Vintage show in November called Noel that I did a few years ago. I can sell vintage items, on their own or re-purposed, and vintage art. 

The piece above is the back half of an old studio reel box. I've had it for a long time, but it had never occurred to me until now that I can do something with the bottom and the top separately, that I didn't have to keep them together. I've never gotten myself to do anything with the top because it's covered in wonderful old stickers and stamps from being mailed around so I haven't had the heart to cover them with anything.  These are image transfers from copies of my originals, which I then repainted with the white glossy paint. I had a lot of fun with these.

The other items I finished I'm really excited about. I had found a couple of old metal receipt pad holders, I think that's what they are anyway. I didn't know what I was going to do with them, but I just liked them. Once I finally figured out how to open them up (leverage and some muscle!) I immediately thought refillable art journals!  

I did an image transfer on the front and back of this one as the metal was really pitted, and added the rusty trim. I'm not sure I'm going to be able to sell this one.

I filled it with really beautiful watercolor paper that I tore into pieces from a large sheet.

This is the back of it.

This one is larger and the metal was in better shape. And I really liked those raised ridges so I decided not to cover it. But I had this old rusty leaf that I've saved for years that fit it perfectly, and added some metal trim and doo dads at the side.

This is a necklace I made that I realized I had never posted a picture of. 

Earlier in August we took Lil Stella camping to Santa Cruz for 4 days. Here she is in action.

This is the famous tree at Big Sur, I've probably posted a picture of this before.

Hubby and Guinness at one of our favorite little restaurants in Bodega Bay.

 The view from a house we stayed at with family at Dillon Beach, later in the week. 

Looking at these pictures is making me long for those cool ocean breezes!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

A Final Canned Ham Post

I'm a terrible photographer, I forgot to take pictures while we were camping, except for this messy one. But you get the idea.... It was a lovely mountain spot, hotter than one wants to be while camping, but still fun. 

I took some inside shots after we got back, these'll be the last I subject you to!

Below is the French piece that was my color inspiration for the whole project.

My friend Val just made me some pillows for the trailer for my birthday, aren't they gorgeous?  The canvas fabric is made from the original hammocks that were used for she and her brother to sleep on when they were little. One was over the main bed and one over the table and they slid in and out. The fabric has aged wonderfully into a creamy yellow.

I needed to do something with the inside of the door, the wood had some water staining and I really didn't like the color. I was going to re-stain it and maybe stencil the same pattern from the pillows onto it somewhere, maybe in a bottom corner.

However Mario felt strongly that he would rather NOT have it stenciled, and we liked it so much better after it was just re-stained that I gave up that fight.

I did do some painting on the reclaimed wood step he'd made though, so that satisfied the urge to paint somewhat.

I also finished a couple of necklaces that I'd started a while back.

This one has a favorite picture of my Claymore, it's somehow comforting to wear him around my neck. I had done something to the picture in Photoshop called posterizing, and I loved how it came out.

 This one I made for my friend Val for HER birthday (we like to make each other gifts), from a copy of a painting I had made for her of her beloved dog that she had lost. I've made one of these for my Mom as well, I seem to be specializing in lost pet memorial necklaces lately.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Meet Lil Stella

Well, almost 6 weeks later, we got her back and it was worth the wait. They did such great work, made us a custom rock guard and some other things that were really above and beyond. Her name is Lil Stella, which is my two Grandmothers names, both of whom gave me such wonderful camping memories growing up. I thought I'd share a few pictures from my camping youth in dedication to them.

This is Grandma Stella fishing, which she loved so much (once my Grandpa managed to talk her into trying it!).  We usually camped at Eagle Lake, which has amazing trout. My younger brother and sister and I are below in our tent there.

 This is my Grandma Lil, with me and my sister Michelle in front of the Prowler.  So many happy memories camping all over California in that 5th Wheel with she and our Grandpa.

We're going camping next weekend, I'll post my final "after" pics then as I haven't had a chance to get the inside back in order. It's been well over a hundred degrees here for the last few days - it was like an oven in there.

I have almost no art to show for myself, although I did complete one necklace, below, and started more this past weekend. I used to make mosaics, and still have tubs of broken vintage dishes, and I had the idea to do a tiny mosaic inside of a bezel. 

We also were doing yard work in preparation for getting the trailer back, as our backyard had become a construction zone.

Here's the yard spruced up and ready for Lil Stella to come home.

And lastly, I'd been very focused on caring for our 11 year old Basset Hound Claymore, who most of you have seen before in prior posts.  He'd been rapidly declining for a while and we lost him a couple of weeks ago.  I don't need to say more about how hard it's been, any of you dog lovers out there understand, but I wanted to post a last picture of my precious boy, doing one of his favorite things.