Friday, November 30, 2007

Thursday, November 29, 2007

November 29 work in progress

Okeedoke, I finished re-emphasizing some of the black lines. Much improved, but I'd like to not have to do that again! Once I have color on there I don't like putting black ink on it again... (I'm still working on that lion, wait til you see that, it's not "correctly" done but it's sort of interesting). So... one more color to go on this dragon...another day or two I'm guessing.

To everyone who ordered Christmas cards: First off, thank you! Secondly, they should ship by Wednesday of next week, if not sooner. I'll have a few sets extra if anyone forgot how much they desperately want to order some before the deadline. ;-)

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

November 28 work in progress

Good news. It wasn't that expensive to get my car fixed. It got a new serpentine belt and a new pulley (lol, I wrote pullet, sorry inside joke for chicken people). My eternal gratitude goes to the Wilton Garage. :-) So that's a load off, I was afraid that was really the end of the road for the old car. *whew* Of course I do realize it DOES have problems but as long as I don't do any huge road trips I feel pretty okay about it.

I finished the red parts. I'm still learning this... I had applied a layer of wax when I finished the black took a lot of the black off (I thought people were crazy when they told me they are doing multicolor images with no wax barrier, but I see now why it has to be that way). Sooo, now I am going back in with black and *carefully* re-scrimming and re-inking some areas. After I do that I'll do one more color (yellow ochre). This is taking hugely long, it may be more of a show piece than anything else, since of course the price will reflect the time that's etched into its surface!

Back work on this one (JC, yeah, it looks the same as last time you saw it pretty much). You'll see changes starting now though. I have to photograph this one in the morning instead of late at night like usual!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

November 27 work in progress

So in other news... the car is making noise again. Arg! I had my neighbor take a look at it this evening, since he's a car whiz. He put belt dressing the belt and that stopped the squeak and he says the belt looks like it's in good shape. BUT, there's still this awful noise going on, and it's something related to the belt, a pulley or bearing or something. Crap-o. I know this car is on its last legs, so to speak, but I need it to hang on a little longer. It's going to the mechanic tomorrow morning so I can get a diagnosis and an estimate on how many of my limbs I'll have to cut off to pay for it. Waahhh. :-(

Between that and the other crap that's going on with the club politics I'm sort of on the verge of a meltdown. I need a hug. :-(

Sunday, November 25, 2007


I stewed for a while, and decided to finally express my opinions to the group.. the group about which I really can't say much. So I wrote a long email, a long pissed off email, but one on which I spent a lot of time and gave a lot of thought and spent a half an hour staring at before I finally had the nerve to hit the send button, and couldn't find any other way to say it. And I said how I feel, I said I am disgusted with how that group is being run and that I don't care who I piss off with what I have written. I don't care. What do I have to lose? Nothing. What can they do, kick me out? Do it, I'm already on the verge of resigning. I know there are people who share my thoughts and frustrations, and I hope they back me up. I know there are people who are mad at me right now (and in fact I already received a fairly rude reply from one of them) and I suspect someone will look for a way to smear me. People I used to be friends with are no longer friends. I hate that it came to this. Somebody had to say it, so I did.

"May the force be with you."

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Turkey Day everyone! In keeping with tradition, here is my first poultry art ever! In case you can't tell, I was rather young at the time. ;-) I hope you've had a good day and a belly full of good food. I actually had a pretty lazy day today, which was nice! And a wonderful dinner at the home of family friends.

I'm trying to start back in working on a horse portrait I started about a month ago, and dang it's hard to dive back in to something that I haven't touched for that long. Don't worry, I'll get it right, but it definitely reminds me why I don't like to stop part way through something.

Anyone wanting art or scrimshaw for Christmas, please get those orders in ASAP if not sooner. Hmm, looking at calendar, actually I'm not sure I can squeeze in more art, but there's a bit of room for scrimshaw.

I've started looking at microscopes. I *really* want to get my own, and I'm definitely serious about doing scrimshaw long term in a big way, so at some point I will get my own, it just as always comes down to money. But I picked out what I would get... And then of course I'd need a table of some sort. I found a really nice compact corner desk that would be fabtastic but I'm not sure it would support the weight of a 40lb scope, so I'd have to go see it in store and find out. This is all still a ways off, but the more I do this the more I am aware of how much easier it would be with my own setup and how I could put in a lot more hours, particularly after dark. I did bring a heater next door to use in the shop when I'm in there and that helps a lot (it's been so cold in there the lenses fog up all the time). Of course as it gets colder and rainier it'll be less enjoyable to trudge over there and I'll be longing to spend my day in my own studio in flannel pants and slippers. :-)

Oh my car stopped squeaking. For now anyway. I put some stuff on the belt and it stopped the squeak, but I guess if it gets wet it'll do it again, so I really ought to keep that stuff with me in the car. Mind you I have had a mechanic take a look at it, and he did not feel the belt needed to be replaced. *sigh* It's always something.

There's some stuff I really want to rant about, but I can't get into it. Have you ever been a part of a group for a long time and then over time you get to see more and more of the politics and crappy back-handed stuff that goes on and you realize you aren't sure you want to be a part of it anymore because you cannot see eye to eye with these people and you aren't sure you want to be a part of a group that operates like this, and yet if you resign you feel like you're just caving in and allowing the things you don't agree with to go ahead and happen? It sucks. A rock and a hard place, and it's so incredibly stupid.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

November 21 work in progress

I finished the black parts of the dragon today. So now I need to let the black ink dry over the weekend before I start in with color. (cross your fingers!)

November 20 work in progress

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Christmas Cards!!!!!!!!! Hurry LIMITED TIME OFFER!!!!!!

DEADLINE EXTENDED!!! All orders and payment must be received by 5pm Monday November 26th. Come on now, you know you want these cards! :-)

Click here for more info!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

a different sort of show

Okay, I have now seen way too much of the south-of-Sacto stretch of hwy 99 too. No more traveling south for a while. In fact, I'd really just like to not travel anywhere for a while. Which is convenient, since the marathon of weekends away is finally over... at least for a few weeks. ;-)

I left Friday afternoon and headed down to Selma, where I stayed with my "chicken friends" JR and LR. They probably don't read this, but big THANK YOU anyway. That was loads of fun, and sure beak the heck out of staying a motel in a strange town full of nobody that I know. I left there early this morning (geez, that seems like yesterday) and drove down to Visalia for a game fowl convention (oh, and my car stayed outside overnight, and got wet again, and my stupid serpentine belt WON'T STOP SQUEAKING, yes this worries me, more than the transmission in fact, I'm going to put some squeak-stop stuff on it but if that doesn't solve the problem it's going to need a new belt, ugh ugh crapfurters, I love that car when it's running right but those times are getting to be fewer and and farther between and it's eating money and I can't afford a new one or even a crappy old one and waaaahhhhhh).

Anyway, onward with the story, game fowl, Visalia... I set up a little bit of art stuff (two originals, some prints and cards, the portfolio, no booth, just on a table, sorry I have no photos). I knew two people there early in the day but they left before lunch, so for most of the day I knew absolutely nobody. I had talked to two people on the phone but this was the first time I'd met them in person. I did meet lots of interesting people, seemed like a nice crowd except for the guy who walked off with my pen while I was talking to someone, just picked it up off the table and pocketed it, um hello!? (yeah right like I was going to say anything, it was just a cheap freebie pen anyway, I'll just fume about it). Very different group than the usual chicken functions that I attend. Note to self, next time bring a friend, I felt very alone. There were a lot of people there, several hundred I would say.

I sold enough to cover expenses plus a little, so in other words not a whole lot. A bunch of people took fliers or business cards and asked about custom work, so as always "we'll see." I don't know if I would do it again. If there's any significant follow up then maybe, but otherwise probably only if I knew other people who would be there, I really didn't like being there all alone. I travel alone all the time and that's fine, but I normally know people when I get to wherever I'm going (plus I noticed that people came over and looked at my stuff more when I was talking to someone else who was looking at my stuff, particularly if that someone else was well known... hmm, must befriend someone well known)...

It feels like Sunday. It felt weird not to have birds in the car. You know what I've eaten today? Pancakes and bacon for breakfast, a chocolate muffin and a coke for lunch at the show (it was either that or chili and I don't like chili), an oreo milkshake in the car on the way home, a glass of iced tea for dinner, and a slice of nectarine pie for dessert. Geez, way to be healthy... I feel like I need to go to bed.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

November 14 work in progress

This is REALLY challenging. I am attempting to do this one properly and work dark to light (I tried to do the lion from light to dark, I'm still working on it but it didn't turn out as I had hoped). So this dragon will be in color. And I'm warning you now, it might not work. Color scrim is still new to me. But you get to either watch it turn out really cool or watch it not work. Hopefully not the latter. This is really hugely detailed, going to take a long time!

I met up with my college roomies tonight for dinner. It was great to see them. Funny how the years go by and yet we seem to just pick up where we left off. :-)

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

interesting things

I haven't done this for a while.

I can log into my website and see what keywords people have put into search engines that brought them to my site(s). Sometimes it's really obvious, like "chicken drawings" or "rosecomb bantams." But sometimes it's pretty darn funny, either because I can't figure out how it leads to my site, or it's just from some totally random thing I said, or why the heck would someone be searching for that anyway??

For example (these are real things put into seach engines that led to some part of or in the last few months):

"half onion" (recipe doesn't call for a whole one?)
"hairy spider" (the shaved ones are just creepy)
"really" (yeah, really)
"how long can chicken stay in the fridge" (!)
"lady cowboys" (I think we call those cowgirls)
"saw horse drawing" (I did too, but she wasn't very good at it)
"buff male" (umm, we talking chickens?)
"katherine of aragorn" (Aragorn from LOTR? Oh yeahhhh, bring it on ;-))
"history motorways too straight" (um, what?)
"other thing that margarine" (umm, butter? crisco?)
"plumers pot" (lol, no!)
"homemade items that sell like hot cakes" (this cracks me up! The answer is little cute things that take a hugely long time to make and you can never get enough money to make your time worth while so don't bother)
"chicken and rant" (some of my favorite things)
"lady horses" (mares or fillies I think would be the more correct terms here)

Streets of Bakersfield

It was another crazy weekend, but the last of the poultry shows for nearly two months (waaahhhh!). JJ and I headed down to Bakersfield on Friday afternoon in her car, me driving.. Wow what a pleasant change from the Taurus. ;-) It was unusual to spend most of the time in the fast lane....

This show seemed really hectic for some reason, I can't quite put my finger on it though. I didn't have anything to do. I didn't take art and I didn't clerk, but it seemed, well, just hectic. I had a good time though, I so enjoy spending time with my "poultry friends" and I met some new people, that's always fun. My birds didn't win anything major this time around, but that's okay. There's always next time.

The banquet was held at a Basque restaurant. It was really good, I did skip the pickled tongue though... Afterwards some of us went to Buck Owens' Crystal Palace. Sadly, it was closed for a reserved event, so we could only look around the lobby. I even wore my super duper western shirt in honor of being in Bakersfield... Here's me with statues of Buck Owens (behind me) and Bob Wills (next to me). Once again no parties, I was bummed.

So now it's back to the same ole. I started a new scrimshaw today. The first step is the transfer the outline onto the ivory. I did that today. It's darn near impossible to see it without the microscope, but it's a dragon.

I also received my order of Tagua Nut slices (aka "vegetable ivory"). It's... different. Looks like I need to polish it more. It'll be interesting. I wish it didn't have the cracked area in the middle. I'll give it a try but I think I'm going to prefer the ivory, just because it looks like a higher quality item, if nothing else.

Gotta go feed critters...

Thursday, November 08, 2007

love it when that happens!

I finished something early! Woo hoo! That's a big load off my shoulders. I had two drawings that needed to be done by the end of the day today and I was fairly concerned it would take me that long. But.. I knew I had a gazillion other things to do too so I put in long hours (12 hours on Tuesday!) and finished them LATE Tuesday night (err, Wednesday morning?) Yay! These are two drawings that were done to be used as holiday cards by the client who commissioned the originals.

"Winter Window #1" (Buff Cochin)
6x8 inches
colored pencil and graphite on gray paper

"Winter Window #2" (American Game)
6x8 inches
colored pencil and graphite on gray paper

And in other news, well there was my own Christmas card (which y'all need to order, hint hint!) and washing chickens and more cleaning around here and starting the next scrimshaw image. It's going to be a Chinese dragon, in color. If it turns out half as cool as I think it might, well that'll be darn cool.

Oh geez, I gotta go to bed!

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Christmas Cards!!!!!!!!! Hurry LIMITED TIME OFFER!!!!!!

At laaaaaast! Some people have been pestering me for years, so here it is, voila, a holiday card!

"December on the Farm"
digital mixed media based on original colored pencil drawing

The catch is that it's a VERY limited time offer, I need to have all orders in by 5pm November 19th. So don't wait, get it while you can! All info and order form HERE.

Please tell your friends, cross-post, etc. Help me get these cards out there. Thanks! :-)

Saturday, November 03, 2007

upcoming stuff

Okay, I am trying *really* hard to finish up a Christmas/holiday/end-of-year card that I can market and sell for this season. Granted, it's way late to be doing this but I'm trying... If I can get that done this weekend, then I will be releasing ONE card image this year for sale (a chicken in a winter barn scene, no this is not the same image(s) that I am doing for the commissioned stuff if anyone who's in on that is reading this). OMG, talk about time crunch.

This is the next pendant up for scrimshaw:

It's 1-1/8 by 1-5/8 inches at its widest points, and 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick (it tapers). So it's a chunky one. The front side is flat. The back side is the outer part of the tusk, so it's curved and stained and scratched, but polished smooth. Very cool little piece. Pre-ban elephant ivory. Do I need to explain what that means? It means it's from a tusk that was imported before the 1972 ban. This does not harm any elephants that are in existance now.

If anyone's up for a custom image do let me know right away. Most images will be somewhere in the $200-$300 range (this includes sterling silver bail and chain, sorry no gold for this one). Extremely dark images will be more. If nobody urgently wants this done custom it's probably going to have a dragon on it, maybe even in color, hmmmm.

Okay, stay tuned for Christmas cards, I hope. I'm tryin....

Friday, November 02, 2007

wolf scrimshaw necklace pendant

*Finally* finished today. Dang skippy, that took a lot longer than I anticipated.... The price will increase on this if someone doesn't snag it right away. Remember, a scrimshaw piece is a one of a kind item, entirely created by hand by making thousands of dots or lines in the ivory and filling those lines with pigment (in this case it's etching ink, and this is entirely stippled..dots, no lines.). Incredibly time consuming and eyeball straining. I can't even begin to explain how much work that background was!

white wolf scrimshaw
18x25mm pre-ban elephant ivory cabochon
back is inscribed "original scrimshaw by Katherine Plumer 2007"
$185 + $10 shipping/insurance
+ 7.75% sales tax (CA residents)
INCLUDES your choice of sterling silver or gold filled mount, and your choice of sterling silver chain, 14/20 gold filled chain, or black leather cord

It felt weird not to pack up and leave today. This is the first weekend since late August that I haven't had a show or some other thing going on. It's kind of nice, but of course it means I have gobs of work to do. I have to finish two drawings by the end of next week. Eek!

I am taking the last of the cull chickens to auction this weekend.

Gotta go draw...