Friday, September 26, 2014

What Influences Your Dreams

      What exactly makes your heart rate go up and your body tingle and no I am not talking about your partner either. Though my partner does this to me, I am talking about you personally. When I was a child a really good book could hold me enthralled until I finished the book, it did not matter what chores or friends were around. I had to finish that book, this often lead to me getting into trouble of course, but I didn't care because the book was that good. I still enjoy a good book today, however, it does not make my heart rate go up anymore and unless I am at the end of the book I can put it down today. What makes my heart rate go up is the process of a new project!

     Yep, I actually dream about my projects in great depth. Sometimes my dreams are so detailed that I can literally see how something came about. A television show or a movie could prompt a thought on a project especially if it is about something that was a book when I was a child. Many things have changed since I was a child and the things I remember most vividly are those things that I loved to do. Although I may not do those same things today, being reminded of those activities can still bring a smile to me, as well as, a warmth something akin to a hug from within.

     I remember watching birds fluttering about and wanting to be able to have wings to fly and the grace and agility that they had. I did not want to be a bird I just wanted to have wings. Even today, birds are still something that catch my eye and make me smile. Birds inspire me and influence my work. Butterflies will also inspire me, I remember thinking once that butterflies were lil fairies, they were the remnants of the fey folk that I read about. It was a very sad day for me when I was taught that butterflies were truly caterpillars. Aw well, there are some dreams that even against facts or opinions you must cling to and butterflies being part fairy is one I still hold onto.

     So for me I have a bird feeder and a bird bath and lots of bushes for the birds to hide in so that I can have a daily influence around me. So where I live I have Swallows, and Red Headed Finches and a Mountain Blue Jay, Morning Doves, Crows that seem rather big, so they may be considered Ravens I am not sure. And there are Rose bushes and an Orange tree and Grapefruit tree in our yard that attracts butterflies. Now I didn't plan our yard it was already created when we bought the house and yet when looking for our home it was the birds and flowers that attracted me it as well. What else influences me well, holidays will influence me.

     And my most favorite holiday is coming up and I have been very busy with a project that I am immensely happy with. Yep, Halloween is next month and the past few years I have been adding to my Halloween decorations and this year is no different. My husband and I have been wanting to find a life size body to put out in our yard for a few years. We never really found one we liked though and now I know exactly how to make one. I enrolled in a mixed media class this semester, and the very first project was to create a form using gesture as our thesis. We needed to create the forms skeleton out of chicken wire and then we would use paper mache and paper clay to create the body of the form. I knew immediately what I wanted to make as soon as the professor told us about the project. I still need to finish adding my glow in the dark paint to my brain, and add the blood, build the tombstone and lay it all out in the yard but yep I have the first body for my yard. Below are some of the pictures of my chicken man in various stages of construction, the wire frame, the paper mache, the paper clay and the near completion.

So what influences your dreams and what do you do to bring your dreams to life.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Whatever, Have I Been Up To

I love the last few months of the year, I always have the amount of holidays that come in at this time use to fill my mind with thoughts of family, warmth, and cheer. As it was those were often illusions, however, in the last 15 years I have been able to have just that. This year, I have begun to add to my Halloween collection. I must say that I absolutely love Halloween I am not so fond of the cutesy but hey you can't have everything.

Halloween is known in every culture, in every nation only it isn't always meant to go door to door asking for candy. It is a holiday meant to honor ancestors and those that passed. To celebrate the harvest and the end of one season and the start of another. It is a a celebration to honor what has passed and what is to come. This is why I love Halloween, though I do love the stories and the Horror that America has added to the holiday as well, lol. So for my collection of Holiday decoration that I began awhile back I am going to add my yard man and here he is in his beginning stages, and in his papered stage and now in his paper clay stage. and there is a close up of his hands so far his hands have been the most difficult part of doing him.

I am finding that this has been a fun class so far and I am enjoying it greatly. Creating the skeleton from chicken wire was not as difficult as I would have thought it would be and making the paper clay is a great way to recycle. All in all so far my Mixed Media Class has been a fun learning class.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Sticking With Your Dreams Even When

As I continue to try to define my dream, I find that I often get distracted with other things. Even though my dream is still lurking around it just seems so much harder at times to actually begin working on it. My dragon has all the material ready, the outline is drawn, the thread and fabric are there waiting for me, and yet I still have not been able to sit down and start it. So many things are happening right now and its all about living life.

We finally finished the tile in the dining room and kitchen and I must say it looks pretty good. The counter tops arrived and the wood for the new faces of our kitchen cabinets. We decided to go with Knotty Alder. For the most part on the remodeling home front that is, my part is there but it is now on the back burner. So I do have a bit of a break in that department. So below is a picture of knotty Alder wood and a cabinet that has been made from Knotty Alder. It isn't a picture of my cabinets, but it gives the general idea of what Knotty Alder can look like in a cabinet.
Kitchen tile

Knotty Alder Wood
Cabinet built with Knotty Alder

However, I still have many other projects that are in the incomplete stage and other projects that I have been working on. As for some of those projects, they too shall stay on the back burner as classes have so far completely captured my attention. Attending three class and each class being three hours long is not typical of me, taking three classes is typical just not the length of those classes. However, I am thoroughly enjoying each one, they all present a challenge to me in different ways. At the moment in my mixed media class I am currently working on a life size torso of a human being it is to show gesture. To create the form we are using chicken wire, armature wire (which is really a 16 gauge wire that has a bit of strength to it but it is still flexible enough to bend and re-bar wire which is very flexible. My greatest challenge at the moment is creating the hands and as the hands are really the main focus of this particular gesture piece I have to get them right, the hands will give the piece some of the more realistic gesture of the piece I am trying to capture.
My life size skeleton using a denim shirt to add some focus to the piece.

one hand experiment in progress still need to add the pinky though that is today's job.
And so my dream of Smaug once again must wait to be fulfilled, I do know that with each new project and the completion of other projects that Smaug is very important to me and I will begin soon. Oh yes, I almost forgot I have also been working on crocheting a valance for my kitchen window and one half of the valance is almost complete. 
Detail of the stitching of the kitchen valance.

view of the kitchen valance with the progress so far.

I have been quite busy and am still working towards my dream of creating the images that I see in my mind and making them into real and tangible items. I have met a few challenges along the way my ability to not be able to draw does hinder me, however, that is where the Photoshop class comes in because by being able to manipulate photo's I will better be able to make a model of what I see in my mind. The graphic arts class will give me a better understanding of how to lay my work out in a straight forward and sequential manner as well as teach me depth and perception abilities. And the mixed media class introduces me to new techniques. Therefore, though I have not reached my dream yet, I continue the journey to my dreams. After all life is about the journey not the destination, So I think I will continue my journey.