Sunday, August 31, 2008

catching up

Whew, lots going on!

It's not even three weeks now til Draft Horse Classic, I will not be accomplishing all I'd hoped to do by then. Yikes.

I spent Friday at State Fair. I got there around 7am for check-in, and got my one chicken all squared away. I debated napping in the car til opening time but it was already too hot so I wandered around and saw some of the livestock and horses before the fair opened. One of the horses that played Seabiscuit was there, he was a cutie! And the horse that played Shadowfax in LOTR was there too but I have to say he's not nearly as pretty in person. Then again I didn't get a very good view, there were ropes around the stall so I pretty much just saw his head and neck and the top of his backline.

I spent the day with a few poultry friends and wandered the fairgrounds. I may edit in some pics here later. I hardly took any but WL took some pics of me with my drawing on his camera and I think they are better than the ones on my camera (I took the coolpix, yeah the flash still doesn't work, I haven't done a darn thing about it). I had a great time catching up with friends. I had wanted to stay all day and see a lot of the shows but it was over 100 degrees so we all wimped out around 3:30 or so. I did get to see one horse race before I left (a quarter horse race, and had I gone with my initial impression my favorite would have been the winner, but I over-analyzed and picked the 3rd place horse instead. Darn, trust the initial impression! Oh well, I didn't bet anything anyway). And I got the trifecta of fair food: cinnamon roll, corn dog, frosty.

I did not go back in to see judging on Saturday. I heard I got best of class but beyond that I don't know who won what. I just wasn't up for spending more time there.

I hate painting. I don't mean art painting, I mean wall painting. We're painting the kitchen this weekend. Ugh! I think taping is the worst part.

Shylah was all cross canter tonight. Aaaarrrg! This is driving me up the wall. She's been very consistent (at times) under saddle as well as bareback, so I just can't figure out if there's any correlation to anything. Maybe I'll try bareback again tomorrow.

I still want to get the landscape drawing done by DHC. IF I am almost done by the end of the week I'll go ahead and order a frame. Probably the new graphite drawing is something I'll work on while I'm there. The Serama illustrations have been pushed back til after DHC (long story there). Lots of scrim ideas I could work on.

Speaking of scrim... about eight months ago or so, after deciding that if I wanted to be taken seriously I needed to scrim a knife, I bought one on ebay (yeah, jumping the gun a bit!). It was several hundred dollars, which I don't part with too easily, but I realized shortly after buying it that I shouldn't have done that. It's not made by someone who collectors are seeking (in fact it doesn't even have a maker's stamp) so basically it has no resale value. The value of my scrim would FAR exceed that of the knife, and it would be impossible to sell for what my work is worth. It's not a bad looking knife, but it's also not really all that elegant either. I'm in a pickle as to what to do with it:

1) I could resell it as-is (having nothing done to it). I probably would not get what I paid for it. But knowing that if I scrim it I could never sell it anyway, maybe I ought to just unload it.

2) I could go ahead and scrim it. A GREAT idea came to me today. I could either keep it as a sample of what I can do (then again it may not be a good "canvas" for my work as far as showing it to high-end collectors) or I could give it to someone. It would give me the chance to work on mammoth ivory, which I have not yet tried. And then at least I could say I scrimmed a knife. I'd just have to go into it knowing I get NOTHING but personal satisfaction out of it. But do I want to use my great idea on this knife? Would this knife even work for it, hmmm, mammoth ivory is very dark, it might be hard to see the image. My great idea involves a tiny amount of metal engraving, something I have not done. I'd need to learn how to do that to pull this off.

It's going to be a busy week, again.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

pics from the Starbucks ride

Here's a bunch of pics from last Sunday. Thank you Alora and Suzie for taking pictures. :-)

"Hmm, do they have anything without coffee in it?"

Why yes, my horse is rather cute isn't she!

The red ribbon is used on a horse that kicks. Shylah unfortunately has a rather large personal space when it comes to other horses (thank you Gwen, ugh). She does NOT kick people. The red ribbon is a symbol that all riders know means to mind their distance. That's something everyone ought to do every horse anyway. I try to be REALLY careful with Shylah on a group ride and usually put her last (she's always the slowest anyway). On many rides there is a non-ribboned horse that kicks someone.

Shylah and Trog. They have met before.

The big red horse is Sampson, he lived here several years ago. He's a tank!

Uh oh, we're holding up the line! I got some chocolate minty iced thing, it was quite yummy.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

the bear cubs

"The Lookouts" (black bear cubs)
scrimshaw on paper micarta
1.5 x 4.75 inches

*whew done finally!*

I love it. :-)

I have been doing scrimshaw for one year now. Happy anniversary to me! May there be many more to come.

Thank you BK for the title (and the original idea). :-)

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

bear with me

I know you just can't bear to wait. The bear scrim is done. I finished tonight, it's pretty much all I've been doing the last couple days. But I'm still waffling on the title, so I'm not going to post it til I figure that out. :-) Hopefully that will be tomorrow.

I have no other WIP pics, sorry.

I should have pics from the Starbucks ride tomorrow or Friday.

Jessie the dog is doing okay. Not great, not awful, just okay. Leaning toward good. Better.

Monday, August 25, 2008

that's a no

Well, at least I have a definite answer now. I will not be showing at the engraving show in Reno in January. I am not eligible to exhibit as a member (since I am not a firearms engraver) and I am not able to apply as a commercial exhibitor for the 2009 show. However, I had to scoop up my jaw and eyeballs off the floor after seeing the commercial exhibitor booth fee, so needless to say I would not be interested in applying to that category anyway. Hmpf. This is most disappointing. I will still attend as a visitor for a day or two, as there are people there I need to meet. Heck, with all the money I'll save on booth fees and lodging maybe I ought to go see the Safari Club show while I'm in town....

Sunday, August 24, 2008

August 24 work in progress, etc.

Tonight I went on a very strange trail ride. :-) There is a "horse trail" (a multi-use trail, walkers, cyclists, dogs...horses I think are a rarity on this trail) that goes through part of Elk Grove. My friend WM (whee, she has new initials!) and some of her family and friends have this tradition of riding to Starbucks on Sundays. I was invited to go along, and so I did. It's maybe a 3 mile round trip. Shylah was pretty good, kinda grumpy today with a few spooky moments. It's way different than riding on the road where I live! It's pretty silly riding a horse through a drive-thru. :-) Several of my friends showed up with cameras, so I will have pics to post by the end of the week.

I definitely need to desensitize Shylah to "throwing things away" as she nearly unseated me when I tossed my empty cup into a trash can as we rode past. So I'll be taking trash cans and buckets out to the round pen and an armload of clanky things like empty pop cans to throw away. I have a few non-horse-owning friends who would actually like to go riding with me. There are two issues here. One is that I have only one rideable horse. I have access to an extra horse (Dusty!) but would not in a hundred million years put a newbie on Dusty, which means Shylah would need to be the sensible horse. She generally is, but I know some things that need work. The other problem is lack of a truck and trailer so I pretty much need to get a little group of totally sane dependable trail horses together so I can mooch rides anyway. :-)

So, in the world of art this weekend... did not work on the bear scrim, I wanted a few days off from that. Weekends tend to be kinda scattered and I want uninterrupted hours for that. I did sand down a Corian tile for an upcoming horse scrim. I still need to sketch the image though. It's a really extremely complicated image (two horses in harness).

I started Nude #4, which I think will be titled Beach Babe or something cheesy like that. Right now it looks like absolutely nothing, yeah!

I am disgruntled with the landscape drawing again. I'm tired of working on the sky, though sometimes I'm totally thrilled with it. It's just taking a lot more layers than I anticipated and kind of dragging on and on. The pink/orange parts are almost done, the reds and purples and blues still need a lot of work. I'm eager to get to the foreground! I need to get this at least pretty close to done early this week so I can order a frame.

Uncompleted sketch for upcoming 12x18" graphite drawing. I'd like to have this done by DHC but I'm not sure I can pull that off.

Ummm, I think that's about it. Oh! I took some hummingbird photos. These are both female Black Chinned Hummingbirds. Could be the same bird, who knows.

Friday, August 22, 2008


I got rid of 40 birds last weekend. That's always sort of nice. There are some promising youngsters out there, and there were some *really* bad ones too. One thing about hatching only a third as many birds as normal is I don't have much to pick from. Last year I was overrun with really nice BBRed cockerels. This year I kept only three (took a bunch to auction) and none of them impress me yet. There are only four black cockerels. Lots of pullets still, they need to mature more before I can really judge them. I likely will have very very very few showable birds for the fall shows. However I'm pretty certain I'm only going to Ventura in the fall, so it's not like I have much scheduled.

I am taking one bird to State Fair. How pathetic is that! :-) I entered three, but this is the season where they molt (lose and regrow feathers) so only one of them looks decent enough to show. Oh well.

I took a few pics this evening. And some video.

Video: "OMG Olin's walking past the pen, everyone crowd around!"

Video: a golden duckwing cockerel crowing

These GDW's have a few years to go, but you have to admit these are darn handsome!:

And I took a few pics of "It." It has a name, but I'm afraid I'll offend someone so I'm not going to say it. I'm pretty sure It's a girl, but that's sure not normal female coloration with those wing bows! It behaves like a female, but has the most comb and wattle development of any female out there (and is not the oldest). And It's tail seems to be coming in with some very curved and glossy green feathers. Hmmm. It is my favorite chicken out there, I have to admit! ;-)

Oh, if anyone wants to see something silly, be at the Starbucks on the corner of Bond and EG Florin around 7pm Sunday. ;-) You can meet Shylah... ;-) ;-) I hope to get pics.

August 22 work in progress

Gah! I totally love this piece! :-D I should finish in the next couple days.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

August 21 work in progress


I'm taking a little eyeball break from the microscope so I guess I'll sit down and try to write something. Things have been hectic.

I'm starting to plan out what will be going to Draft Horse Classic for my booth. I wish I had more new stuff to show. I will have several scrim pieces, the landscape drawing will be done, I may get another horse drawing done (ha ha?) and there are a few other items that crowd has not yet seen. I need to allow about two weeks for framing, and have everything ready to go a week beforehand, so that doesn't leave me much time.

Jessie the dog has taken a turn for the worse, again. This has happened many times over the last year. She's off feed (other than fried eggs, she gladly eats fried eggs) and not well. But she's still happy and perky and may come around again like before. I won't see an animal suffer though, and I'll know when the time is right.... Honestly both dogs are sort of in "hospice" now. Nellie has Cushing's disease, so her timeframe is also uncertain. It's tough when animals get old. :-(

JJ came over on Tuesday night and watched me ride Shylah. She cantered normally the entire time, other than occasionally picking up the wrong lead if I was working outside the round pen. No cross cantering though, so I guess she has that all figured out. The difference is astounding. I was riding in a bareback pad, and it wasn't long ago there would have been no way I could have stuck on there through that bouncy cross canter. Some observations though:

She barely lifts her feet off the ground at all (this may explain her whacking herself repeatedly on the poles the other night, and also some of her issue with rocky terrain, she's not paying attention to where her feet go, but having lived in land-of-flatness for 5 years that's understandable, the biggest protrusions off the ground out in the pasture are horse turds.) So when I was trotting, I was really surprised when JJ said "she's not trotting!" Huh? Yes she is, same as she always has! Well, in Shylah's world it's a trot but her front feet barely come up so it's more like she's walking in front and trotting behind. So we'll call this the Shylah Shuffle now, and it doesn't change whether she's trotting fast or slow (oh wait, she doesn't go fast). Whatever, it's quite comfy and she seems like she could do that all day.

She's a small horse, obviously (14.2ish). She has thick legs and big feet. She's not delicate by any means and would have no trouble packing me around all day, she's just... compact, and I'm rather tall so we're an odd combination. She doesn't have much front end. When you sit on her, you think "where's her shoulder?" There isn't much, and her strides are short and without extension. She wings out a little with her front feet. My saddle may put me a bit too forward on her, though I feel no difference in her movement whether she's bareback or saddled. She is without a doubt completely adorable though. She does not seem sore at all in any part, and JJ said she looked very relaxed at all gaits. (Half-asleep, probably). JJ said I should try her cutback English saddle. Hee hee, me in an English saddle, it's been 16 years!

Conformationally she ain't perfect. She'd never make it as an endurance horse, and she's sure no race horse! She's probably be best suited for having roses braided in her hair and pulling a cute cart down the road. Second best might be a short-legged rider. But instead she has me, and for the type of riding that I do (pretty mellow! I DO want to get out and hit the trail more, hint hint to anyone reading this) she'll be just fine, and despite her shortcomings don't think for a second that anything would change. I love that horse to pieces. I'm just becoming more aware that she'll have her limitations, and it seems more doubtful that I would ever have her bred. If I had the means, it would be nice to have more than one rideable horse, but right now that's out of the question, and even though Gwen is sound at the walk and usually trots around just fine, I just don't trust her enough on the trail not to do something completely idiotic like kill me. I really can only deal with owning two horses at once....soo...oh well.

It was fun going to the Fair last night. I'll be spending more time there when I take my bird(s?) in for show next week. It's a real trip down memory lane being there. I mean, I've been showing at State Fair since 1988 but it was definitely most fun as a kid. I didn't have much time to look at the art show but I walked quickly through just to see where my work is hanging. There is some amazing stuff there, and also some totally weird stuff. Sometimes I just don't understand art. It's a great place to people-watch. If you ever want to see some really good examples of what NOT to wear, look around a state fair. *shudder*

Well, I'd better get back to it.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

August 20 work in progress

I actually have a whole lot to say, I just keep running out of time to do it and am too tired to ramble on about stuff tonight.

Tonight was Avian Bowl at State Fair. Boy does it bring back memories. I've been helping with the competition ever since I stopped being part of it. My team won in 1993. Wow, that was a while ago!

Work in progress:

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

August 19 work in progress

Next up, background!:

Haven't worked on this for a couple days:

Draft Horse Classic is less than a month away, eeeek! There is so much I would like to get done between now and then.

Monday, August 18, 2008

night sky

Just some pics I took of the full moon the other night, I was experimenting with the camera.

With a slow enough shutter speed to pick up the really cool clouds, the moon looks too bright.

But if I went with a faster shutter speed in order to see "the man on the moon" I lost the clouds. Oh well! I'm sure I could have figured out the ideal setting at some point but I had to get back to watching the movie I'd paused. :-)

Friday, August 15, 2008

eight hundred!

Holy worn out keyboard Batman, this is my eight hundredth blog posting! Hmm, I should celebrate when I reach a thousand.

I was going to call this "August 15 work in progress"

La dee da...

Thursday, August 14, 2008

update - no way

Okay, having been in touch with the directors of both organizations that put on the show, it looks as if there is no way I can participate at the 2009 show. Apparently I would have needed to acquire approval from the show committee at the 2008 show itself. That's news to me, how is it that none of the other exhibitors there, who I all told of my plans to exhibit in 2009, mentioned anything about needing to track down the show committee right then and there?

It bothers me when shows are so nebulous about their requirements. Having looked into a few engraving shows (the rest were quite far away, and plane tickets/hotel/car were just not something I could handle this year) that seems to be the norm though. Art shows are so different, where it's all spelled out about what's required and how much it costs and when it's due, etc.

Sooooo, I'm still hugely frustrated about this, I'm really pissed off about the whole thing. I will attend the 2009 show, probably try to go for two days this time. I'm thinking very seriously of getting myself a t-shirt strategically emblazoned with the words "ask me to show you my scrimshaw" and make sure I parade around in front of the right people this time, whoever they are.


Wednesday, August 13, 2008


I don't really feel like talking about art tonight, so how bout some turkey pics. The local flock of 10 babies and 2 adult females is in the front yard almost every afternoon, and in the evening they head down the road to the creek. Some of these pics were taken a few days ago. The babies are almost as big as the adults, and have about half their adult feathers in now.

The one on the right is one of the adult females:

What's that in front of the turkey on the right?

Why it's a dragonfly! Ha! That was unexpected.

I canned peaches this morning. It's this total onslaught of fruit now. Jam it, can it, freeze it, give it away, eat it... and in a week it'll all be gone and then we miss it like crazy.

Is this a great pic or what!

big setback

I'd been hoping to attend an engraving show in Reno as an exhibitor in January 2009. I'd been a bit misinformed about the application process, I had no idea that it was invitation only, and evidently I did not manage to show my work to the right people when I went to visit last year. So I just found out today that I'm not eligible to show there. This is totally heartbreaking, I'd been counting on that being my first engraving show and really helping me get my scrim out there in front of the right crowd.

I'm at a loss again. Why must everything I'm so sure about go kablooie lately??

Aaaarrrrg. Pep talks welcome, I'm wondering if the people who tell me to give it up are right. :-(

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

August 12 work in progress

*yawn* When I was a kid, I used to sleep outside relatively often. My brother J usually got dibs on the hammock and I'd get stuck with the lounge chair, which is right at wet-cold-dog-nose-in-sleeping-bag height. But I always slept so well outside as a kid, I'd wake up early, feeling all refreshed. Yeah that must have worn off quite some years ago. I did see some really impressive meteors last night but dang, refreshed? I've been groggy all day. Napping in the hammock is one thing, attempting a whole night without falling off is another. (no I did not fall off). And there's nothing like being almost asleep, all peaceful listening to crickets with suddenly OOMPF the combined weight of 23 pounds of cats lands on my midsection and leaps off the other side. Yay, so nice to be an obstacle course for the boys. Go around? Nooo. They did both grace with me with their presence for some sleep time too, awww. And Shylah stood at the fence and looked at me in the moonlight.

The serama male sketch is pending approval. When it's a drawing in progress I'll start posting it here. And I have to do the female sketch too but I'm waiting to get word on the male.

I did some framing today, and I'll be picking up the frame for the percheron scrim ("Sunday Morning") later this week.

I know this doesn't look like much but you would not believe how incredibly long this takes:

Monday, August 11, 2008

August 11 work in progress

Today I redid the sketch for the Serama illustration project (those are some very strangely assembled chickens if you ask me.) In order to figure out how to draw the exterior, I have to understand the anatomy. Hopefully I am on the right track. Can't show these yet.

I also sketched out what will be scrimshaw nude #4, a blonde on the beach, very "pinup" style. Not going to show you this either til it's a scrim in progress.

I am starting sketches for two 12x18ish graphite horse drawings, and just barely starting to figure out the composition of my next fine art scrim (draft horses).

I think this is probably too many things to work on at once. I found myself setting the timer for an hour at a time today, and when it rang I'd change art pieces. Hectic.

A little progress on the bear cub scrim today (I need to come up with a title):

And a little progress on the landscape (I assume you've all figured out that's what this is). ;-) I know, a real leap for me.

Ooh, I do need to start on a painting too, whee that'll add another thing to work on!

I hope you all watch the meteor shower tonight. I'm going to sleep in the hammock in the yard, at least until the mosquitoes drive me insane.

Probably won't be riding much this week, it's hotter than heck again. 102 today.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

done jamming I hope!

Woo wee, sometimes the weekends where I "don't have much of anything planned" turn out to be the busiest. There were a lot of things I would have liked to do this weekend but I just flat ran out of time.

Friday evening I went to the wedding of friends W and B. Congratulations you two! Had I known the horses weren't there just for photographic purposes I would have stuck around the church long enough to see you ride off into the sunset (crazy people rode a few miles all the way from the church to the reception, lol!)

I made six batches of jam this weekend (21 jars of peach, 21 jars of nectarine). UGH, that's a lot to do. I finished most on Saturday but had to do two batches today. It's a very long process: pick it, peel it, slice it, mash it, boil it, can it, label it. All together I probably spent about eight hours making jam. Unless I get another big order in the next day or two, I am done for the season! (As in, if you want to order, DO IT NOW). Let's see, I think I made about 30 jars of strawberry, 40 jars of apricot (or was it 50? I forget), 20 jars of plum, 21 peach, and 21 nectarine, good grief!!!)

I did not go to the mounted shooting thing in Dunnigan. If I'd had more time I would have driven up there this morning but it just wasn't in the cards for now. Maybe next time.

So at the age of five years, Shylah is finally finding her canter. I've been riding her for two years now (I started her under saddle at age 3). Her canter was awful from the start, so it's not something I've asked of her as much as I would a smooth horse. Within the last few months it started to improve a little here and there, probably not coincidental that within the last few months it's something I've been working with a LOT more with her. I think the turning point may have been the day that she was an awful b*tch on the road and I made her canter way more laps around the round pen then I'd ever had her do before, and by the end I was thinking "you know, this isn't half bad". Then last time I rode I remarked that she'd found a lope in there somewhere.

People asked me from time to time if she's cross cantering. A really simplified definition for non-horsey folks is that the feet hit the ground in the wrong order, so the horse is unbalanced and it makes for an awkward ride.

I wasn't sure, I can't see her feet when I'm riding. Why I never made a point to check her on the longe line, I don't know. I guess I thought a cross canter was something that a horse would occasionally do, but not all the dang time every time, and I'm the sort of person who can overlook what's right in front of me unless I specifically know to look for it. This evening I saddled her up and took her out to the round pen and watched her canter around me. Normal, normal, cross-canter! She switches back and forth. Sometimes she immediately goes into cross canter, and sometimes she'll be normal and then switch in the hind end without breaking stride in front. Hmmm. I have a horse that does spontaneous flying lead changes of the back end, great...

I asked my mom to come out there for a minute and watch (ha ha, she's not a horse person). I pointed out what to watch for with the back feet, and then I hopped on and cantered around and she confirmed that Shylah will switch back and forth, and it was REALLY interesting to have someone pointing this out on the ground because most of the time Shylah was cantering normally tonight and it felt pretty darn good, but then there would be a few strides of the old "ugh this sucks" and Mom confirmed that's when Shylah would cross canter, and then she'd switch again.

Horsey friends, any idea what's up with this? On the bright side, she's improving by leaps and bounds right now, the difference within the last month is incredible, I think she had never properly cantered (at least not under saddle) until very recently. Anyone know any particular exercises that will help continue to improve this? I know this can be a result of back pain, I just don't see her as a likely candidate for that, particularly given that she's probably been doing this all along. She shows no signs of discomfort anywhere along her back, she doesn't buck, she doesn't toss her head, she's doesn't have any qualms about being saddled or cinched up, she stands for mounting, etc. I really think this is more of a development/strength thing. It would be interesting to have someone who knows about horses watch her (JJ?)

I hardly had any art time at all this weekend but oooh baby now we're cookin'! This is getting drastically better as the color gets more saturated. Looks prettier in person. I'm definitely taking some liberties with this piece and using my artistic license, but hey, it's not a portrait, it's not a commission, and only one person knows what this really looked like so I think I can alter things however I see fit. ;-)

9x20 inches
colored pencil on cream Stonehenge paper

Can you catch a mouse bare-handed? I've been told this is not a skill I should brag about ("it makes you sound like a weirdo") but hey, isn't it nice to know that if a mouse ever runs through the room I'm not going to jump up on a chair? It's not like a make a habit of this, but if I'm out collecting eggs or something and don't have a pair of gloves handy and suddenly there's a mouse, well NO I'm not going to get it get away, I'm going to catch the little bugger. It's not hard, just takes some finesse, I have yet to get bitten (mind you these wild mice would be more than happy to chomp me). Anyway, I actually caught two this weekend... I had to get photographic proof. So if you didn't already think I'm weird, now you do. :-) I won't be mentioning this particular skill on my personal ads. ;-) And no I would never ever try this with a rat, they are pure evil.

(sorry no, this doesn't end well for the mouse, rodents are not welcome here)

Thursday, August 07, 2008

speaking of Dusty

These are a few pics that JJ took last week when I was there. Dusty's an 11 year old (right?) Tennessee Walking Horse. His color is called Champagne. It looks a lot like Buckskin, which is what most people think he is.

I did some groundwork before I hopped on:

Worked on gaiting some, just going up and down the fenceline. It doesn't come easily to him. He naturally tends to trot rather than gait, so it's a matter of keeping contact with the reins and urging him forward at the same time. Feels strange to me. He's got a lousy trot though. Great canter! Unfortunately the pic caught him with his nose in the air looking like I'm really hauling back on him... I'm not!

horsey things

Anyone have any experience with horse "boots" (like EasyBoots and whatnot). Shylah has hard feet but she's ouchy on rocky terrain, and she's going to be in very rocky terrain for a week or so this fall. Get her shod? Try boots? Any ideas?

She actually loped last night in the round pen. It was amazing. Her canter, in addition to being rough, has always seemed a bit frantic. I'm not sure where she found a lope, but there it was. Still a little bouncy, but it is improving for sure. I suppose it's conformation that gives her an odd gait but she's a lot more level than she used to be, and I think perhaps that's making the difference. I wish I had a big open space to go run her around in. *envies those with open fields to ride in*

I've been thinking more about the mounted shooting that I saw at Horse Expo. They have practices here and there around the area. There are numerous reasons I can't participate at this point (no trailer or truck, no gun, crappy aim, slow horse) but it does sound fun. I'm toying with the idea of going to watch and photograph an event this weekend (anyone want to go to Dunnigan with me? Why do my horsey friends all live so darn far away!?) I'd need a fast smooth horse if I was ever going to do this, and then it dawned on me... Dusty! He's quick, he's all go go go, he might be decent at it.

I forgot to say this but when I rode Dusty last week I was struck by how the way he walks felt just like the way that a mule walks, with that forward and back motion. Very different than a normal horse.

Any Sacto area people members of any local horse clubs? I need to meet horse people (yes, you know what I'm getting at).

August 6 work in progress

I had to do a secret project today, so no time for scrim. I also started sketches for a new poultry illustration project (Standard-like, but just two of them for now). Can't show any of that til they get approved, but of course I have to finish the sketches before I can do that.

I'm totally not happy with this drawing but I keep telling myself when I get more color on there and it actually gets some saturation it'll be sooo much better. Cross your fingers. I do have a reference photo but I am not following it exactly (there's no need to). I've been there, but didn't take the picture. :-)

Listening to my ipod on shuffle mode can be very interesting, there are some jarring transitions. Nothing like soaring along with the cast of Cats singing "Memory" and then suddenly the Charlie Daniels Band cranking out "Uneasy Rider '88" Whoa. My tastes are eclectic.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

August 5 work in progress

Remember, this is one dot at a time... *egads*

I'm not super thrilled with the drawing I'm working on, which is why I haven't been working on it much. I still think at some point it'll just click but it's sort of a rebellion until that happens. There are still, um, oh heck I don't know, at least 4 more color layers to go in that top portion... I can see why some artists do their Work In Progress blogs after the fact, but wouldn't you rather suffer through the angst along with me rather than be presented with some tidy pre-packaged thing when I'm done. ;-)

(photographed in daylight):

(photographed at night, with more stuff done obviously):

9x20 inches
colored pencil