December 5, 2010

A Beautiful Day

We finally had a semi-free day, and took the dogs for a walk. Although it was still a bit chilly, we had a great time. The dogs were so excited that they pulled and strained almost the whole way, and they are so worn out from the walk and run that they spent the next few hours out cold on the couch.

October 27, 2010


We captured this unicorn running around in our garden last night. We didn't have a princess to lure her in, but she was hungry and walked into our trap for candy glitter.

October 7, 2010


I had made plans to work through all the half-finished projects laying around on my worktable, but got distracted by the all Halloween projects online. I found some nice small plastic skeletons at Michael's, so I got to make a mummified elf corpse. I had tried one last year, but the skeletons available weren't very good. I think he turned out OK, although I'm not too sure I like his clothing. I may have to play with it a bit to get it to look more natural.
I also made a few blood jars. I found some battery-operated tea lights, and they look really nice and warm in these jars (although it doesn't look like it - I don't really know how to take pictures in the dark, and these lose their creepy quality in the light.

September 12, 2010

Encaustics and stitches

A few years ago, I was reading a book about Galileo, and it mentioned a book he wrote called A Discourse on Floating Bodies. I loved the title, and thought about what the cover of such a book would look like. This is the first attempt:

A Discourse on Things that Float, I
encaustic on board
This is the second attempt:
A Discourse on Things that Float II
Encaustic on Clayboard

Rhaynie and Igor were playing around in the yard last night, and Rhaynie crashed into a bush. A branch stabbed her in the side, and cut a hole about 1 inch long. We had to take her in to get three stitches:

I think it probably looks a lot worse than it is, but it sure looks gross. She is very tolerant, and hasn't complained at all.

September 9, 2010


Hallowween got me thinking about vampire and werewolf hunting kits again, and I decided I would tackle one this year. I was trying to find just the right antique container, but I could wait forever for that, so I am going to make one and age it myself.

I made this basilisk tooth a while ago, but I think it will work quite well as a werewolf tooth. I have it stored in a small wooden tea box, with a bit of raffia for padding. The tea boxes seem like something that would be used to store specimens in a museum. They are made from very soft wood like balsa, so it is easy to sand off the label, and they have a sliding cover.


I have been playing with the encaustics again as well. I bought a new iron (my old one caught on fire) so I finally managed to get back to learning how to use the medium. I haven't quite got the hang of making it smooth or rough where I want it, and of course I am going to blame it on not having the right equipment, but it is getting closer to what I am aiming for. This is a mountain view by where we go camping (between Banff and Jasper). It is a 5x7.

September 8, 2010


It has been a rough spring and summer, but I think life is gradually returning to normal. Our house still needs some furniture, my organized studio is a mess, and the dogs leave the house covered in mud every day, but those are relatively normal events that are easy to deal with, given enough time.
Now that fall is here, with cooler weather, earlier dusk and Halloween just around the corner, I am also feeling much more inspired to play. Not that I have a lot to show for it, what with all the cleaning (I shampooed the carpets twice on the weekend!), but I got a bit of time to play with some polymer clay, and made a bunch of tiny jack-o-lanterns. They are about an inch and a half including the stems.

July 3, 2010

Reborn Jaden

I finally decided to try making a reborn doll. I don't usually like to do kits, and this one was more than $200, but she is a really beautiful doll. I am really happy with the painting, and she looks so lifelike it is almost creepy - I feel like I am neglecting her if I leave her alone in a room. However, I was really not happy with the hair. I couldn't get it rooted so it looks natural, although that may have been caused by using dark hair instaed of light. I think I will try a very light alpaca hair on the next one (yes, I was happy enough with the results that I think I will do another one). And maybe I can find some blond eyelashes as well - all I could find was black, and it didn't look very realistic.

I put in real hair eyebrows too, and they ended up a bit scruffy, and the hairs are too thick, so the alpaca might be just the right texture for the next one. I chose Jaden because she looks like Gwen, but of course Gwen's hair was very short and she more bald than anything, so adding hair made Jaden look quite a bit different.

July 2, 2010

I was making a captured fairy for my sister as a birthday present, and got into a bit of a rush to finish. I put it in the oven before it was fully heated, and the broiler came on and burned the hands and feet. I am going to have to start all over, and won't be able to deliver it as planned.
He kind of looks like he was digging in the dirt. Or maybe an oil slick off the gulf coast....

April 22, 2010

Best in Breed!

Rhaynie won best in breed at the show on the weekend, despite my inept handling! Woohoo!
Now I just need to learn how to do this properly so she can place in the group again!

March 14, 2010


I seem to have hit a creative block, and can't get past it. I think it is this art doll I have been working on - I made the head, hands and feet at Christmas, and then put it all together in January, but now I can't decide how to finish it. I made the body using a technique recommended online, and it has resulted in ridges all around the body that will show if the clothing material is too thin. I wanted to dress her in something mossy, with black hair with white steaks so she looks very earthy, but I'm having trouble finding the right material. I think perhaps she has become too precious, and I am getting too stressed about getting it right. I guess I need to make the clothing removable so I can change it later.

I put all my art supplies away over the Christmas break when I cleaned up the studio (I use my art table to serve Christmas dinner because it is the only table large enough to seat that many people). I thought that a bit of a change might help me get back into the creative mood, so I dragged all my encaustic materials out of storage and made this encaustic landscape. Of course, my iron caught fire before I got halfway through and I had to find alternative tools to get it done, but I think it worked out OK in the end. The little encaustic iron is such a vital tool, and I had become a bit dependent on it, so it helped stretch my skills a bit to be forced to work with a different set of tools. Encaustic Landscape
cradled 8x10 Claybord

February 3, 2010

self portrait

I apologise for being absent for such a long while, but it is mostly because I have been so very busy with my new job that I am exhausted at the end of the day, and can't summon the energy to do much. However, I was surfing on the weekend, and got inspired by an image on a website, which of course, I didn't record so I can't give credit where it is due.

This started with a plaster cast of my face. It was going to be mostly white, with some aging techniques to make it look like old marble. It was a bit boring, and I thought that a bit of color might make it look like an earth goddess image. It ended up looking more like a moldy cadaver (it isn't quite a pretty in real life). So I guess this is a self-portrait as a zombie. ;-))