Saturday, March 31, 2012

I actually am still alive

You wouldn't know it by the lack of blog postings for the last two weeks though, would you. Ummm yeah, sorry about that. I seem to have a lot on my plate right now. And then I was thinking well what's a blog without pictures, and that means walking over to the OLD computer to use my website software so I can upload stuff, and then I finally realized that oh yeah duh I can just log into my web host and upload pics that way. Sometimes I'm not the brightest bulb. ;-)

So the big question, which I think I was actually asked by three different people today, is when am I moving. The answer: I'm not quite sure. Soon. When it's ready... I was up there last weekend helping out with sheet rock (can I put that on my resume now?). There's still quite a lot to do, and the actual move process is going to take a while, what with the horses and birds and stuff and everything. I need to hire someone to help with chicken coop construction. Unfortunately my handy people here are, well, HERE. And there is nearly 200 miles away. Still pondering how that's all gonna work!

Anyway, it'll happen when it happens. I'm the obsessive sort who wants to make plans for EVERYTHING even though I know that doesn't usually work, so I'm trying to go with the flow even though I'm not good at that. There's no rush though, no deadline. I've started in on a cleaning/organizing spree though, and will start packing the non-essential stuff. There's nothing like thinking "do I really want to pack this, move it, unpack it, and find a place to put it?" to make a person get rid of stuff (or box it up and leave it behind, as the case may be!) ;-)

I have four batches of chicks hatched out, and three more on the way. Decided to do that as early as possible this season, and I'm glad I did, I think I'd be going nuts if I waited, and skipping a year would have really set the breeding program back (besides, my neighbors like to come over and play with the chicks!)

On the art front, I have a stack of sketches and price quotes underway. If you happen to be awaiting one of those two items, rest assured I will get to you as soon as I can... I'm way behind right now.

If I could kinda freeze time for a bit and catch up on some things, I totally would. Like, um, taxes. Copying my mom's recipes. Cutting out fifty billion squares of fabric and sewing the quilt that I FINALLY have enough fabric for (after years of collecting it!) and meant to make before Christmas.

Anyway! How bout some pics, just to get back into the swing of things!

Of course I still bake!

Aren't they cute?! The big one's not mine, the little one's a Rosecomb.

This is a couple miles down the road from where I'm moving to. These elk come onto the property sometimes. I only had my little camera with me...

Omar's getting really friendly! He comes right up to me now and always expecting treats! The girls are shy. Then again, he's not good about sharing.

Home Depot must hate indecisive people like me who take one of nearly every paint sample card. ;-)

Monday, March 19, 2012

"The Greatest Generation" Bowie knife

Hellooo, sorry for not blogging more... I'm back and forth between two computers, with no photo/website software on one and tempermental old software on the other, so blogging is kind of a giant pain in the you know what right now. I need to get all transferred over so I can resume normality here on the internet.

But, nevertheless, I finished second part of the "The Greatest Generation" project, the Bowie knife, a few days ago. This is has been an incredible project, and I SO honored to have been a part of it. So here's a big huge heartfelt THANK YOU to Dennis and to Mike!!!

I think I talked about this earlier, but I'll talk about it again... the theme of this piece. Originally there were some ideas kicked around that just weren't feasible for various reasons, so I started on the grips for the 1911 first (with Patton and MacArthur) while we all thought more about what to do with the knife. And I was reading one of my art magazines one day and found an article about a photographer of horses, and what really stuck in my mind was the dramatic clouds in the photos. And that got me thinking about the knife, and the long horizontal space... and airplanes! Iconic WWII airplanes! That idea was well received, and we were off and running. My client selected the types of planes (a F4U Corsair to represent the Pacific Theater, and a P-38 Lightning and two B-17s to represent the European Theater), the types of ships shown on the Pacific side (Essex, Gridley, Baltimore), and the general theme of each side, and I designed the layout. But I kept thinking back to the horse photos and the clouds, and I knew I wanted the background and the scenery to be just as important as the planes.

I'm not sure exactly how to explain this, but I think my biggest challenge here was trying to give these inanimate objects a sense of life. It's not like depicting a person's face, or an animal. I feel that I accomplished that goal. :-)

I am thrilled, THRILLED, with how this all turned out, I wouldn't change a thing on any of it. I can't wait to see it all finished, all the parts together. I know that Mike is still working on engraving the pistol, but the whole set will be shown at the Colt Collectors Association show this fall, and at the Firearms Engravers Guild of America show next January.

Now, I gotta tell you I'm not set up AT ALL for photographing metal. I took about 987498745 pictures and they all sucked, so I got fed up and scanned the darn thing. Unfortunately this doesn't do justice to the beautiful blade or to the engraving, so I've put in some of the closeup shots as well. I'm sure this will be professionally photographed at some point when the whole project is completed.

Knife made by Larry Downing
Engraved by Michael Dubber
Scrimshaw by me, obviously ;-)
Total length of knife: 11 inches
Length of ivory handle: 3-5/8 inches (at the longest point)

If you click on the pics you can see them bigger!

This should give you a sense of size:

Sunday, March 11, 2012

March somethingorother work in progress

This was from a few days ago. This is the last WIP pic that you will see. It's soooo close to done right now (right now being much farther along than what you see here). :-)

the new arrivals

Like I don't have enough going on... I'm really kind of starting to freak out about moving. There is so much to do, I have no idea where to start, blah blah blah, etc, and so forth. I don't want to get into that today.

But in the midst of all the craziness, I went and got more birds. Peafowl. Am I insane?!?! It's quite possible, I admit it.

Friends of mine who live about a half mile down the road have a pretty large flock of peafowl. I've house-sat on numerous occasions, and became increasingly charmed by these birds. I know they're loud. Really, I know. But I got to thinking that having a few when I move might be kind of fun. They'd have plenty of room to roam, trees to sleep in at night, they'd keep the grasshopper population down, they're supposed to be pretty wicked snake-hunters, and well, they're really pretty! And besides, I'm moving to a place where there are horses, cows, dogs, chickens, geese, ducks, turkeys, guinea fowl... really what's another loud animal?

So when my neighbors offered me a deal on a trio if I would help them sell off a bunch of their other ones, I agreed to make that trade. I took photos, posted ads, and the within a few days the birds were nearly all sold. I wasn't planning on getting mine til I was moved and settled in, like maybe in May, but they asked if I'd take them now so that they wouldn't accidentally sell the ones I wanted.

Eeek! Well, I have an empty 12x30ish aviary, so I went ahead and picked them up last night. They will have to stay cooped up here, and then they'll have to stay cooped up on the new place for at least a month before I can let them out to free range. The two females are totally calm already, but the male is still endlessly pacing. Oh well...

Anyway, I now have peafowl. My brother says this cements my white trash reputation. Here I am sticking my tongue out at him: :-P I really hope I haven't made some big mistake, I hope they don't become totally obnoxious.

I opted to give them names that would represent their Indian heritage. So the male is Omar. He's a two-year-old India Blue. He won't get the really long feathers til next year. The females are Nara and Jovita. Nara is a one-year-old India Blue, named after my beautiful bellydance teacher. Jovita (pronounce the J, it means joy) is a one-year-old Black Shoulder peahen. I'm excited about them... I hope I stay that way! :-)

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

March 6 work in progress

The end is in sight! I say that not out of relief, but just excitement. :-)

I spent some time last night figuring out what to do with the background, and looking at lots of photographs of skies and clouds and landscapes. I've got it all planned out now, so in about a gazillion more dots I'll be done. (That's how I should start measuring time, dots, as in "sure, I'd love to go out to dinner, just give me 4500 dots and I'll be ready, okay?")

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

eggs for sale this spring

Want to buy eggs this spring? Here's what you need to know:
1) I am only listing them on ebay, so go sign up for ebay
2) I only accept payment from PayPal, so go sign up for PayPal. It's free, and everyone uses it. Make sure you have enough $ in your PayPal account to pay for the eggs, otherwise shipping gets delayed and... they don't hatch!
3) Quantities will be VERY limited. I should be listing some through early/mid April, but beyond that who knows... just depends how long it takes to get settled in, coops built, birds relocated. By then it may be just too stinkin' hot, so if you see something you want, bid on it!
4) The Random Rosecombs web page and Facebook page will stay up to date with whatever's available.

Friday, March 02, 2012

March 1 work in progress

This was supposed to be posted yesterday, but I'm having software problems up the wazoo. I recently bought a brand new shiny iMac (yes I'm very proud of that) but I have not moved all my stuff from this ancient iMac over there yet, and the ancient iMac (on which I have photo editing software and other magical things, and on which I am currently writing this) is having issues. Things might get all complicated here for a while in my world as I attempt to switch over in the next few weeks. Oh how I hate computer problems!


No scrimshaw today, I tweaked my wrist pretty bad somehow yesterday and it said I needed to work on some other stuff today.