Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Silver Duckwing Old English Game Bantam

Approved! This'll go on the main website eventually, but I'm in the midst of a major update and that won't be done for a while. So it's here in the mean time. This is NOT a drawing for the Standard, though style-wise it's the same. SOP drawings are vertical though. And this is NOT the "same bird" as I have drawn for the OEGB pics in the Standard. This is the client's interpretation of the ideal.

"Silver Duckwing Old English Game Bantam"
10 x 8 inches
colored pencil, graphite, ink
on tan Stonehenge paper
November 2006

Monday, November 27, 2006

karma or something

Why does the printer never run out of ink BEFORE I go to a supply store? I went to Staples this morning to buy some brochure paper, didn't even think about getting ink (the warning lights weren't on), got home, printed the front side of all the brochures, and the printer ran out of ink. The warning light had gone on when I was about half way through (I only did 20! And they are not all that colorful!). ARG!!! I probably should have gone back this evening but I ran out of time so I'll have to go again in the morning, come home, and THEN set off to deliver the darn things. I'm taking some to a local kennel, some to a groomer in Sacramento, and some to a pet boutique (did I mention I'm TAKING COMMISSIONS again?). And I'm going to an art supply store to load up on items that I need for accomplishing this year's Christmas list. Can't really specify....

I am gallery hunting. Know the perfect place? Tell me. I've made a list of a few places in the greater Sacramento area that I need scope out, and find out what their submission policies are. Do any artists read this blog? If so, how does this work? Do you submit to more than one gallery at a time and then wait to see if any accept you, or do you go one at a time? That just seems like it could have a rather long turnaround time, particularly if they are wanting mailed-in submissions or only review them monthly or something.

Who reads this thing? Sometimes I wish you would all introduce yourselves. :-) Some bloggers write for themselves. In some ways I do that, it's a handy way to keep track of things, but generally I'm not writing this for me, I'm writing for anyone who wants to read it. Please feel free to leave comments!

I finished the Silver Duckwing Old English Game Bantam, and emailed a proof to the client. As soon as he approves it I can put it on line.

I haven't really posted many pics lately. I should do that. Haven't taken many. And the art stuff is all non-showable at the moment.

I know, I've always meant to show the figure drawings but never found the right time or place. Nudes don't seem to fit my website theme too well, but they are art after all, a rather classical form of it! I was a little weirded out the first few times I did figure drawing but it gets easier, and it's actually rather fun. I hope nobody gets offended by this. Remember, I'm an artist and this is an art blog (well, chickens and horses too!). Anyway, it's just parts. Actually, it's line and color and shading. These are all from Summer 2000 (college), I think only two people have seen them. :-)

Graphite, charcoal, chalk, pastel (they vary) on 18x24 inch paper. There are three models, but you'll probably figure that out.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

rainy day

Rainy days sometimes seem gloomy, but I was reminded the other day how it was always the rainy days that seemed to have the most birds show up when I used to go out bird-counting in college (yeah, it was a real class!). And sure enough all I have to do is look out the front window to see that indeed this rainy day has the yard teeming with little birds.

Hopefully the grass will grow in the pasture! I've closed two pastures off to give it a chance to grow, it doesn't stand a chance with three horses tromping around on it. The horses are wonderfully fuzzy. JJ came over yesterday and I learned I've not been riding Dusty the correct way. Correct for a western pleasure horse perhaps, but she says a gaited horse needs more contact with the bit, so that's a real switch for me. Feels like riding English! (actually, feels like I'm hanging on the reins...) I'm used to going around on a loose rein with my horses! I did accidentally get him to gait a bit that day and I'm looking forward to trying it again and figuring out just how to cue it. He is so much fun to ride at the canter, I haven't enjoyed cantering that much since Thunder was alive. She could turn on the speed! Thunder was a "racing bred" Quarter Horse (lots of Thoroughbred in her bloodlines) and not only did she love to run, but she was fast. One of the most memorable parts of our time together was me being about 14 years old, galloping full-speed into wind in the huge field across from our property, eyes streaming in the wind. What a rush. Gwen has never been one for speed, unless she's doing something naughty like running away from me. Under saddle she's a bit of a slug, with a tendency to buck at the canter, and these days I don't ask that much of her anyway because of her feet (truth is, I'm about ready to completely retire her-- no more riding, let her go barefoot). Shylah just has a really bouncy canter so I prefer to trot around on her. She's lazy too! Not Dusty though, he wants to go go go.

I am drawing a Silver Duckwing Old English Game Bantam right now. It makes me think of Twinkie..a bird I used to have. Poor Twinkie. :-( It's not a bird for the Standard, it's a private commission, which means I'll be able to show it on here once the client has seen it. Woo hoooo!!!!!!! Though not a Standard drawing, it's identical in style, so it'll give you a very good idea of what those look like.

Well, time to go feed the critters.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

ha ha, whoa!

I just happened to look at my profile. The other day I switched the blog over to their new service (supposed to be better). Well, there are apparently some glitches. For example..

I am not 250 years old, and I was not born in the year of the rat.

I shall now go fix that!!


have some for me!

I would do just about anything for some turkey and mashed potatoes and cranberries right now. Unfortunately I wasn't feeling good enough to go to Thanksgiving dinner, so please have something for me!

Instead I have spent the day working on my website (nowhere near done), putting stuff on ebay (note cards, done), taking a short nap with the cats (it helped), and generally being cranky about missing everything. It also would have been a lovely day to ride the horses, but I have the energy level of hibernating toad.

Needless to say I will not be hitting the stores at 5am tomorrow. (then again, nobody in their right mind would do that anyway!).

Anyway, Happy Thanksgiving, enjoy your time with friends and family!! :-)

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving! Once again here is my first poultry art, from preschool:

I finished a dog portrait today. I can't post it on line til after Christmas though. Durn! All this stuff I can't show off lately!

Still sick... might not make it to T-day dinner tomorrow unless I feel much better. :-(

Monday, November 20, 2006

it's good to be back

I was surprised to find that the pastures here had turned a little bit green while I was gone, and the horses seem to be even fuzzier! It's good to be back. I'm all jazzed up about poultry shows right now, so it's a little angst-producing that I don't get to attend one until mid January. I guess I'll just have to put my chicken energy into keeping some of the youngsters in good condition!

I had a great time in Indiana, and I am soooo glad that I went.

I left here around 8am Thursday, traveled with JJ. The flight to Denver was rather pleasant. I think that may have been the quietest airplane I've ever been on (plane itself was quiet, and the people were too!). The flight from Denver to Indiana left much to be desired. If there is anything worse than a screaming baby, it's a screaming toddler, and there was one sitting right behind us. I can sort of understand a baby being upset, but this kid was the age where the parents ought to have been able to get her to knock it off, and they didn't do a darn thing. I was feeling thoroughly unpleasant by the time we landed.

I am totally amazed by the view of looking down at clouds, it gets me every time.

I didn't manage to get much sleep that night or any other night. I don't know what it is about hotels but I just can't sleep. Well, that place was rather loud too, people running down the hallways, talking loud, herds of bison stampeding down the staircase, etc. It was hard to get up on Friday, and got increasingly difficult every day!

It seemed odd for the show to be three days long. Friday felt like Saturday, Saturday felt like it was confused, and Sunday just became a blur. It was amazingly huge. I heard someone say the show room was a quarter of a mile long from the front door to the back door, and if that's the case (I believe it!) I walked a LOT of miles. I went up and down every row, and made a point to see every bird this time. I still missed a few though, I missed some rows that were being judged and I don't think I ever made it through all of them. That seems strange, how can I be there for three days and not see everything? You'd have to see it to believe it! The sales area was huge, it was like some crazy bird market. There were soooo many birds! And so many things I'd never seen before. I kept finding birds that I had drawn for the Standard, and that was super exciting (White Faverolles, Buff Cornish, Blue Sumatras, oh my!) I took well over 300 photos, which ought to give me plenty of inspiration for upcoming projects.

There was very little "down time." I was somewhat concerned I'd end up sitting around twiddling my thumbs but that was certainly not the case. I seemed to be on the move all the time, I kept running into people that I knew, etc. It was really fun to catch up with people I hadn't seen for a while, meet a bunch of new ones (lots of new Rosecomb exhibitors, met a few of the sponsors I've sent drawings to, etc.) I think that was a big difference from how I felt when I was in Ohio in 98 and 02... I just know so many more people! Oh and wearing my name on me seemed to help too! ;-)

I didn't catch everyone though. There were some people who I know were there who I either never saw or just never managed to talk to because they were involved in something else at the time. That building is so big it's impossible to find anyone, and I kept losing track of which birds I'd seen and which I hadn't!

I had brought the whole portfolio of finished drawings (printouts, not originals) and I left that at the APA booth Saturday and Sunday. That turned out to be a very good move, a lot of people saw it there and hopefully a lot of people picked up business cards or info. I received a lot of nice compliments on the work that I've done, and from some pretty big-time people!, and that of course gives me the warm fuzzies. :-)

So I'm really glad I went. It would have been nice to take birds, and it would have been REALLY nice to take the art booth, but neither was going to work with my budget.

It's good to be back though, I feel like I've done a lot of airline travel lately! No more airplanes for...oh crud, only a month. :-/ I think I'm coming down with another cold. Great....

Here's a bunch of pics!! I wasn't going to post this many but I sorta went nuts with it this afternoon:

The show hall:

Part of the sales area:

Brown African Goose, this bird won Best in Show:

Ancona Duck, never seen one of these in real life:

Black Breasted Red Cubalaya Bantam, never seen one of these before:

Black Breasted Red Shamo Bantams, never seen these before:

Large Blue Andalusian:

Blue Golden Duckwing American Game Bantam, this bird was so pretty!

Large Blue Sumatra:

Large Buff Cornish, never seen these before:

Buff Silkie Showgirl, you could not pay me to raise these things, I find them quite horrible:

Chamois Sebright:

Crested White Call, how cute! Never seen one before:

Didn't write down the name but I've never seen this breed of goose before:

Best looking Magpie Call I have ever seen:

Large Malagache, never seen or heard of. I don't find him very pretty!:

Large Spangled Orloff, I'd seen these in England!

Pied Call Ducks:

Rose Comb Nankin Bantam:

Serama Bantam, cute color:

Large Silver Duckwing Cubalaya:

Spangled Cornish Bantam:

Large Tolbunt Polish:

A turkey!

Vorwerk Bantam, never seen one of these before:

White Chantecler Bantam:

Large White Cornish (pearl colored eyes):

Large White Cubalaya:

Sunday, November 19, 2006

what a show!

WOW! I had an absolutely wonderful time in Indiana, but I'm way too tired to even think straight, so I won't try. I took several hundred photos, I may post a few, another day...

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Eastward ho!

Hey poultry people, look me up at the big Indiana show! It's gonna be fun! :-)

I got my jacket back today, holy smokes it looks good! The logo looks like it belongs there! So for anyone in the Sacramento area, I hereby heartily endorse Ethan Wade Graphics for all your embroidery and screen printing needs.

I photoshopped this last night (part of a gift basket that's being donated at the show):

Over and out!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

finally rode Dusty

I just got in from riding Dusty for the first time. That's probably one of those things I shouldn't do when nobody's around, but... what choice did I have. He was fine, other than an extreme desire to scrape me off on the panels. Egads I hate riding in a round pen!! He's pretty light on the bit and turns very well with hardly any cue...while he's walking. But get him going faster and it's really tough to keep him off the rail, and I mean literally off the rail. I try to stay relaxed and loose but when he repeatedly mashes me into the wall I start to think it's deliberate and it's hard not to tense up. He did get better by the end though, we had a few conversations about how I would be the one deciding which direction to go.

There is no doubt that the saddle is sufficiently well oiled. Gross. I'll need to make a point to wear my most foul old jeans for a while when I use it.

His trot is not a lot of fun, it's very bouncy, definitely a posting trot! He doesn't naturally fall into any sort of gait (he's a Tennessee Walker). He walks, trots, canters, and sometimes throws in a few steps or something else but I haven't gotten him to sustain the something else yet..(that may be easier when riding). Anyway, the trot doesn't compare to Shylah's! I wasn't going to do any more than that but while giving him some leg to get him OFF the rail he started to canter. It was like "ooh, what's this, we're floating!" So nice! In that department he has Shylah beat for sure! So that was a pleasant discovery.

I think we'll pretty quickly be moving our work sessions into the arena (pasture) though I do want keep working on not having him scrape me off, because that's not fun and I don't appreciate it.

JJ, he needs a curb strap on that bit to keep it in place.. I may have an extra somewhere, I'll see if I can find it. Otherwise I'll pick one up at the feed store next time I go, unless you get there first! :-)

Sunday, November 12, 2006

a typical weekend

Nothing much exciting going on. Sounds like I missed a fun show. Darn it.

The art show reception last night was nice, I'm glad I went. I don't venture downtown all that often but it's not so bad. Although every single time I seem to catch a red light at Capitol and 43rd, right there at the East Lawn sign. And there's NEVER anyone who needs to get through the other way... just a random red light, must be on a timer or something. It can be greeeeeeeen and not a car in sight but as soon as I get close to that intersection it turns red! Weird.

I did a lot of drawing this weekend. I'm working on the pair of Wheaten Old English Game Bantams. I've never given Wheatens too much thought but the female color is really fairly complicated to draw, there's so much subtlety there. But I'm also not sure how much of that is supposed to be there... the real live birds seem to have a lot of pale lacing, and the description doesn't mention it, so I'm pretty sure it's not supposed to be there. Hopefully I'm on the right track! Should be done tomorrow I think. That was going to be the last pair... I was going to be done... and then the phoenix got added. *SIGH* I still hope to be done by Christmas. I am bummed out that I won't be totally done by the Indiana show though, that irks me.

I also spent a bunch of time working on fixing up Dusty's saddle. He's ready to ride (finally, yes, I've been a slacker) but doesn't fit all that well in either of mine (he's narrower through the withers than my horses) so the saddle that came with him is 50+ years old and was dry as a bone. Well... one quart of neatsfoot oil and six hours later (plus leather cleaner before oiling, and a final coating of conditioner) it's clean and shiny. I am kicking myself for not photographing it before I started, it looks a lot better. If the weather is decent tomorrow I'll saddle him up and see what happens. Otherwise maybe Tuesday.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

art show

I'll be there tonight, not sure about the other receptions yet.

I regret not going to Bakersfield for the poultry show this weekend. Partly it was a money issue, but one of the main reasons I didn't go is we were supposed to do a bunch more coop painting this weekend, but then it rained and it'll be too wet to paint. Darn it. Should have just sucked it up and gone. :-(

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

busy last few days

The chicken show in San Francisco was on Monday. JJ and I left here a little before noon, and I think it only took about 2 hours to get there. Not a bad drive, though I must say I was grateful not to have to be the one driving! :-) Unfortunately when I printed out a google map I'd put in the wrong address...oops! But we found it. It was in a gallery at the California College of the Arts. It was a nice location other than being really hot. It was a warm day there, I can't imagine what that would be like in the summer with no air conditioning in there! There were I think 10 chicken people there, 20something birds, and art. And it got so crowded!!! The birds were photographed by so many people. It was really a lot of fun. I took my rooster out for a while and people really enjoyed petting him or getting to hold him, and I heard a lot of people exclaiming they had no idea chickens could be so pretty. So that was pretty cool. As far as art sales go..not so hot. I'd somehow managed to overlook the fact that most people who attended the show were probably students, so not exactly rolling in dough. But at least I can say I've had an art show in SF! It was a quirky little show but a lot of fun.

I took a few pics during setup but didn't manage to get any of how crowded it was.

My bird getting photographed.

My bird! Thanks AR for the photo. :-)

We got back here shortly before 11:30pm that night. It was just a one-evening show.

The next morning it took all my willpower to get out of bed at 6:45am. I left around 8:15 and headed off to Napa for a day of chickening at REJ's. I got there in about two hours. AR was there too, so we got the grand tour of the birds and took zillions of photographs. It was really neat, I had a good time there. Thanks REJ. :-) I will give you a CD with all the pics, maybe bring them to Indy and you can see them there and let me know which ones you want printed. Gotta warn you they didn't all turn out great..

The drive home was exhausting.

Speaking of which, I have to be up early tomorrow too for a farrier appointment at 8am (time to meet the new guy...), I'd best hit the hay.