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As I discover more and more mixed media applications, I continue to jump from project to project! This year I have added woodwork including carving to my repertoire.. now I'm back to painting!

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Two years later ……

How interesting that I find this blog on a day when I feel like writing.  It’s a hassle on a mobile keyboard with long fingernails.

But so many events have come and gone since my last post here.  I have spent a bit more time on Facebook and the Blogger site.

I am now visiting my dad where he is in a nursing home, and has been for a year now.  I have watched his slow decline and become aware that I somehow felt he was indestructible and would live forever.  He is now in his 96th year, and although he still could outlive me, he is definitely on the wane.  I miss being able to discuss current events with him as I have all my life, but he can’t hear.  I notice that he still does read the newspaper he doesn’t retain much and really doesn’t care…and this was a man who had his own radio show for 20 years and was glued to CNN every day.

So I’ve brought my paints this time and while I’m alone in his house, I attempt to express some of my thoughts about the life cycle of all of us in a desperate effort to accept the inevitable.

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Grandmother’s House

This latest creation is based on the last home my grandparents lived in.  Boy, did I learn a lot making this one.   It is 5″ wide by 7″ deep, and is scaled at 1″=4′.  It has a “composition” roof and is pier and beam. It even has a porch with wood stain.  There are more windows on the other side, not shown.

 Lots of mistakes, lots of “I should have done this first” events, and it still needs some touches before I could ever offer it for sale.  The next one will be a lot easier.  (She says.)  But at my age, I am so slow at anything.

My grandmother loved this house, because it was the only one she ever owned.  My grandfather had been a tenant farmer all his life, therefore they had lived in other people’s houses although they only had to move twice. She died in 1985, I think, and the house was sold for $10,000.

Mother’s Day 2014

I’ve been a mother for quite some time now, and the thing I most want every year — and every day, actually — is peace and quiet.  I so enjoy time to create, and I do best in total solitude.  I do entertain myself with podcasts and I subscribe to three.  I’ve been behind in listening to them and have three more to listen to before I’m caught up!  This I will do today, as I put the finishing touches on the first little house I have ever made that isn’t a square or rectangle.  This one has a porch, and looks much like the last house my grandparents lived in.

I’m also working on a self-portrait, trying out some new clay, and would like some time just to experiment with some inks I’ve had for some time.  It seems to me that everything takes me three times as long as it used to… for instance, yesterday it took all day just to miter and glue frames to the house I’m working on.  Somehow I will develop a system for that.

Pictures to come!

What am I creating today?

Today the only thing I am creating is coordination somewhat of Google accounts. Don’t have time to search out the help section. We have a major thunderstorm today, and I actually have an appointment and have to get out there on the road. Yaay.

But yesterday I finished two major projects: a “room box” for my granddaughter, which is basically a partial dollhouse. I made it from an old drawer that I got from Canton some years ago. I discovered that repainting, and adding a shelf in the middle, then standing it on end (the front of the drawer is the base) it was easy to do. I added patterned paper for wallpaper, and some craft felt for carpet. I furnished it with some dollhouse furniture, and I have more packed away somewhere but I’ll have to dig through the garage to find it.

I also decided what to do with a painting I am doing of a Buddhist meditating, and am winding up a new self-portrait that I will use as profile photo as soon as it is finished. I’m fairly pleased with it.
I am also in the process of switching to a new email address. I am on way too many lists and get distracted easily by whatever Ikea or Jerry’s Artarama is trying to sell me. I’m an old lady and gotta stick to the budget!Today the only thing I am creating is coordination somewhat of Google accounts. Don’t have time to search out the help section. We have a major thunderstorm today, and I actually have an appointment and have to get out there on the road. Yaay.

But yesterday I finished two major projects: a “room box” for my granddaughter, which is basically a partial dollhouse. I made it from an old drawer that I got from Canton some years ago. I discovered that repainting, and adding a shelf in the middle, then standing it on end (the front of the drawer is the base) it was easy to do. I added patterned paper for wallpaper, and some craft felt for carpet. I furnished it with some dollhouse furniture, and I have more packed away somewhere but I’ll have to dig through the garage to find it.

I also decided what to do with a painting I am doing of a Buddhist meditating, and am winding up a new self-portrait that I will use as profile photo as soon as it is finished. I’m fairly pleased with it.

I am also in the process of switching to a new email address. I am on way too many lists and get distracted easily by whatever Ikea or Jerry’s Artarama is trying to sell me. I’m an old lady and gotta stick to the budget!

Paint, Saw and Sand?

4.25×4.25 handmade house from basswood

Since all I have been doing this year so far is woodworking, first with the Craftsman scroll saw and the new Dremel Moto-Saw I gave myself for Christmas, maybe I should change the name of this blog!  However, I am still painting too.  Right now, I have three paintings in the works while I work on all the little houses I am making for a marketplace, and it really is a great way to satisfy my ADD tendencies; while glazes on the paintings are drying, I go do something with wood.  And vice-versa.

In February I began learning wood carving.  First, I bought a set of carving tools from Woodcraft, but because that aggravated the arthritis in my hands, I bought carving bits to use with my old Dremel and began to learn power carving.   I bought a Wecheer power carver on sale at Woodcraft, and one of the handpieces went bad within a month.  Annoying.  However, after an extended correspondence with somebody in China, they finally replaced it at no cost to me.  Great, since a handpiece can cost $50 alone!

And lo and behold, now Dremel has come out with its own power carver called the Fortiflex, and I love it!  It takes all the same bits as the original Dremel.  So I keep sanding bits on the Wecheer, and change out the Dremels for carving or cutting.  I started making little houses in April and so far have made about half a dozen.  I have trivet frames left over from my engraving/sublimation business and am carving 4.5×4.5 pieces to fit inside them, to add to my market inventory.

Oh, and because I am fascinated with routers, I found a refurbished Dremel Trio which can do things I have learned how to do yet.  I made my own mini miter box for my little houses, but I found one on eBay which I am anxious to receive.  And I have promised myself NO MORE PURCHASES.  We’ll see how long that lasts. (Just saw that Dremel now has another new product!)  I got tiny hinges from Christina at Sky Blue Pink where I always can find tiny stuff, and found an eBay store that sells construction items for dollhouses that I can use on my own houses.  Mine tend to be perhaps 1:24 scale, but usually not any particular scale.  They only open at the front door, so they really are not toys.  No point in putting furniture in there, in other words.  They can be lighted with battery-powered tea lights, so I have decided to put patterned paper inside all the subsequent ones I make.

Okay.  So that’s my update for now.  And yesterday, I learned about a mixed-media postcard swap, so off I go to make a bunch of those….. but first I have to finish the house I am working on now.  Really!

Woodworking

Now I am learning the scroll saw.
I was just about to sell mine and one night I was watching YouTube and literally stumbled upon a site from scrollsaw workshops and found myself watching four hours of instruction. Hey, I have enough wood filler and glue to do this, I say to myself.
So, I am learning. Lord knows I have enough wood that I hung onto from my laser engraving. I went through all my storage bins and found lots and lots of material. I will get back to you with photos as soon as I can. And so far I have only broken two blades!

Albums and journals

Now that my last art festival of the year is done and over, I have decided to clear out my collection of card stock and chipboard making albums and books for journals or whatever. I must have made two dozen by now!

Of course now I need to order a new binding machine and a bit more paper and tape…..
But I love little books!

 

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