Wednesday, May 30, 2012

ode to Angus

Most people think Angus is my dog.  Technically speaking, he's not.  Technically speaking, he's my mother's dog.  But I do refer to him as "my dog" and I am well aware that he has chosen me as his person.  As much as he can sometimes drive me nuts by wanting to be everywhere with me, all the time (I refer to that as the "all Angus, all the time" show), I am obviously going to miss the big lug... a lot.

No, he isn't going with me when I move.  Like I said, he's Mom's dog, and she's going to need him.  But perhaps more than that, it would be impractical for me to have him there.

But for the past two years and three months, he's been my faithful buddy pretty much all the time.  He inspired me to walk.  I figure he and I have logged about 1700 miles.  I wore out some shoes in that time.  I learned the interesting dynamics of the people who drive up and down the road... who waves and who doesn't, who moves over and who doesn't.  I saw a lot of the same people every day, and I wish I could tell them all that I won't see them again.  Well, most of them.

I met (as in, talked to, not just waved at) 19 new people because I was out walking [almost] every day for the last two years and three months.  Maybe they don't all remember my name, but they remember Angus.  A few have become good friends, a few it's hard to say goodbye to, a few I will miss SO much... and one I hope I never see again.

So thank you, Angus, for getting me out there and bringing new people into my world.  Be good to Mom, don't wear a hole in the yard waiting for me to come back, and I know the Dog Biscuit Fairy will still come see you.  And to my neighbors, I'll tell you where I keep the leash... you're welcome to walk him, he already loves you.  :-)  Just don't let him pee on everything or you'll be out there all day.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

because who doesn't love cute baby animals?!

First I have to give you the update on moving. The ball is rolling, quickly. Like "OMG how am I going to get all this stuff packed up now that it's finally time to pack it up." I remember very little of moving here to this property in Wilton. I don't remember doing all this packing. Maybe because when I was 18 I just didn't have this much "stuff" (and by that I mean the entire studio, loads of reference books, supplies, etc). And I think I also don't remember it because that was not exactly a bright and sunny time in my life, to put it mildly. Moving now is entirely different than that was... now is good and adventure and new and exciting, but packing is still a giant pain in the you know what. ;-) I'm trying to be good and sort stuff BEFORE it goes into boxes, but it's only a matter of time until I reach the "screw it, box it all up and deal with it later" stage!

 Anyway, the furniture's moving this weekend, and then I'm off to Blade Show in Georgia next week, and there will be a lot of back and forth in the next month between Wilton and Oak Run, but hopefully within about a month I'll be able to move the birds up there.

On Friday, on short notice but on an opportunity that I could not pass up, my horse Shylah moved up to Oak Run. So that morning while moving the last of the hay out of the barn and into the horse trailer, lo and behold I found a baby cottontail rabbit. OMG cutest thing EVER. Not the least bit scared, totally healthy, and just barely old enough to be on its own. But... my sweet darling cat Olin has been proudly presenting me with a lot of dead bunnies lately (to my absolute horror) and I really didn't want this one to be his next victim. So I had a day to adore it and take photos and then it went home with my friend Jan, to a nice cat-free yard where it will be released when it's a little older and the scaredy instincts kick in a little more.

Here's some pics! All together, now, awwwwwww! :-)

Monday, May 21, 2012


In case you didn't know, there was a solar eclipse on Sunday evening.  It was an "annular eclipse" meaning that although the moon would be directly between the sun and earth, the moon would be far enough away from earth that it would not entirely cover the sun, and a "ring of fire" would be visible.  I happened to be up in Oak Run over the weekend bringing up a load of furniture and working on a few items, and that just happened to be right under the central viewing line for the eclipse.  Couldn't have planned that any better!

It was really neat to see, and fun to share the experience with a few friends:

I'm one of those people who can get totally mind-boggled looking up at the sky and pondering the universe, and it really was a rather moving experience to stand there and watch this happen (with appropriate eye protection of course!)  Made me feel like a tiny speck in a great big universe.

I wish I had a better grasp on how to use my camera, but I did manage to get some decent photos.  Here's a link to the album I just posted:

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

"Romeo" scrimshaw Pomeranian dog finished!

Pomeranian Dog
full-color scrimshaw on Corian (TM) tile
2 by 2 inches
custom commission, sold

Isn't he cute?!  :-)  I love how this turned out!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

May 12 work in progress

I know I know, super creepy with no eyeballs!  It's just that there are some real subtle colors in the reflections on the eyes and I didn't want to risk muddying that area with all surrounding black ink, so that's why the eyes ended up being last.  So what still needs to be done: eyes, probably adjust the shadows a little, and signature.  And don't think that'll happen in a few minutes, ha ha nooooo.

Anyway, now that you can see what my scratching is turning into, I'll tell you about the image.  This is Romeo.  He's a Pomeranian and a therapy dog, not to mention obviously extremely cute!  He is definitely the apple of his owners' eyes.  :-)

I have to say I loooove scrimshawing furry critters!

I think it's pretty safe to say this'll be the last thing finished before the big move.  Unfortunately that means I won't get a knife done for Blade Show, but life goes on.  I need to start packing.  You're thinking "wait, I thought you did start."  True, I did.  And then I stopped.  But now that the ball is really rolling and it's getting down to the last minute, I need to resume in a big way.  Clock's a-tickin'.

Well, I think I'll call it a day in the studio, I've been scratching lines since this morning and there's a couch and a television and a DVD and a cat calling me from the other room.  Typical Saturday night, woo wee. I thought really hard about going to Reno today for the Californios Ranch Roping competition.  I went years ago when it was still up in Red Bluff and it was pretty cool to see, it would be a great place to shoot some photos, and I'd found out that one of my favorite people in the world was going to be there but unfortunately it's enough of a drive that I'd pretty much lose an entire day, and there's just too much to do right now.  I need to put that on my calendar for next year though!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

May 10 work in progress

Scrimshaw, as you surely know from reading this blog for a while (right?) is a form of engraving.  What gives it the color to stand out against the (usually light colored) surface is ink.  So before it's inked, it doesn't look like much:

In fact, it requires some strategic positioning under the microscope in order to get enough reflected light to see what one is actually doing.

Progress as of tonight...  A lot of what might look like white highlights is actually reflection.  Quick point-and-shoot photos under the fluorescent light is not the way to take good photos.  I'll do good photos when I'm done!  :-)

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

May 9 work in progress

To clarify, the Corian is not actually a weird greenish color in real life.  When photographed under the fluorescent light of the microscope it looks that way, but it's really just an off-white color.

Let me just say it takes a LOT of lines to get an image that dark!  This image will be a mix of dots and lines (dots more so when I get to the non-black areas).

Monday, May 07, 2012

May 7 work in progress

This will be done in color, but it's almost entirely a black and white image.  Actually, it's almost entirely a black image.  The furry areas there around the muzzle will end up MUCH darker than they are right now, this is just the "first coat" so to speak.  But since it is a very dark image, I will end up doing all the black areas first.  Long way to go... gonna look a little spooky without eyes for a while!

Friday, May 04, 2012

a new scrimshaw piece in progress

I've just started a scrimshaw piece, I'll just let you watch and see what develops, without saying too much about it yet.  The material (because I know someone will ask) is Corian.  This is a custom piece.  And I need to get it done before the time comes to pack up the studio.

Looks like I'll officially be moving at the very end of May or very beginning of June, depending on how people's schedules work out.  No doubt there will be at least one or two trips up and back in the mean time though.  I painted the inside of the loft last weekend, and I like how it looks, really gives it character. Still needs flooring and plumbing and all that good stuff, and I'm still not entirely sure about the chicken coop situation, but things are coming together well.  If I had the ability to teleport back and forth that would sure simplify things.  ;-)  I know it's going to take a while after I move to get into a routine and feel like life is back to normal!  But I really really look forward to that time, when I'm settled in, know what I'm doing, and can really dig into the ever increasing backlog of work.  I'm one of those people who needs a routine, I (obviously) don't handle change and uncertainly particularly well.  ;-)

Oh yeah and I'm going to Blade Show again in June!

This year is nuts!  :-)

ps- Jan, the new blogger settings have me all messed up too, took me a while to find stuff, and to remember to title my posts!

pps- MAY THE FOURTH BE WITH YOU!!!!!!!!!  (I know I should have said that to you all at the beginning of the day rather than the end, oh well, I did plaster it all over Facebook this morning though!)