Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Bunny Bowl

Today I get to start painting so I will be absent for a few days as I mix and apply paint on the new pieces. Before I get too deep into the paint, I thought I would show you the nightmare piece of my studio this month...the Bunny Bowl. I had this crazy idea of making a fastmache bowl instead of using the papier mache bowl I purchased to build on. (That would be the Virgo in me) It actually went pretty smoothly and I was pleased with the lack of shrinkage and warping.

What I hadn't figured out in my sketch was how I was going to translate that drawing into a three dimensional figure lounging in the bowl. I wanted him to look like he was in a round bath tub so he would be charming when the bowl was empty, as well as when it was filled with jelly beans so that he would look like he was bathing in them. It took some tweaking and a little grumbling, but I think he kind of got there. I'm happy with the hand dropping down off of the edge and the other hand looking like he is holding on to the surface. He seems content.

I don't think you will be seeing too many more of these figures in bowls. They are tough to create on a concave surface and I thank my friend (you know who you are!) for whining at me until I made at least one. I learned some new things on this piece and that is what it is all about so we will call it a good experience...even if it felt a bit like a nightmare.

Have a great day (we will be in the 60s....hooray!) and happy creating!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

I Received a Very Special Surprise!!

Wow, I just finished supper and I'm trying to figure out what happened to my day. I had a lot of errands to run this morning, came home and had some email problems (frustration), tried to finish a piece this afternoon I should have had done yesterday and all of a sudden it is almost 7:00 p.m. Ever had a day like that? Not exactly how I had expected the day to go, but I did just have a revelation regarding the piece I'm trying to finish so I am excited I finally have a visual solution to what was bothering me. Whew!!! Okay, enough about the crazy day.

Most of you reading my blog know that I have a love for all things Halloween, and one Halloween artist in particular that I think rocks is Chris Klingler. I just think Chris's work is off of the charts in originality and design and his hatching and cross-hatching techniques are just flawless. Chris is always coming up with something new and different and his repertoire of images range from what I would call spooky to the sublime in Halloween imagery. Recently Chris posted the image of "Narcisse", below, and I commented to him she was one of my new favorites of his work. Well, that silly Chris asked me for my mailing address and I knew he was updating his files so I sent it to him and look what I got in the mail. This is not a print...THIS IS THE ORIGINAL!!!!!! She is pen and ink, color pencil and acrylic paint and she is lovely. And the most wonderful part was he sent it to me, "just because." Awwwhhhh, is that not just the nicest thing . He not only is talented, he is generous to a fault!!

Now, if that wasn't enough, he sent me the limited edition print below, "Blue Moon Cats." This is so perfect for me and my Monkey-Cats Studio's cats! If you knew Elwood and Jake, the Monkey-Cats, you would think they had posed for CK for this work!! Those two are always together and sometimes I think they sleep with their tails wrapped around each other. When I saw this image I just thought how perfectly it captured them...even if CK didn't mean for me to read all of that into this delightful image.

Now, do you see what I mean about his work?!! He is a master of line, shape, value. color, texture, and composition wrapped in a unique style distinctly Chris's. To see more you need to go to his website where he has several slide shows displaying his work.

Give Chris a look...I promise you will not be disappointed!! I'll do another post of them after I get them framed.

Need to go finish my rabbit bowl!! Have a great evening and we will talk at you later!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Out Walking the Spider WIP

As most of you know the favorite pet of any good Skelly is a nice little spider that they can cuddle with or take out for walks by moonlight. The new little WIP for today is to immortalize this loving relationship between a spider and Skelly. The figure shows a little Skelly in a pointed Halloween cap with Yo-Yo springing up and down from his leash, I mean his spun thread, as the little Skelly takes him out for his evening exercise. They do scares together, crawl on things together and Yo-Yo is a master of doing spider tricks. (You know that little tickle you felt on your neck last night and you quickly felt the area and found nothing...that is a favorite spider trick performed for his Skelly owner to tease you!!) Oh how this little Skelly loves his spider!

Here is a close up of the little spider, Yo-Yo, smiling back at you. The figure is made with fastmache, wood and wire. I can hardly wait to get this dry so that I can put some paint on the two of them. I have hopes that this will paint up nicely.

I'm working on another piece today that I need you to cross your fingers for me that it works. It is one of those things that I think should work, but since I haven't tried it before I'm a little uncertain if how I want to do it will work or not. I think experimentation is a good thing that keeps us from becoming too repetitious so if it doesn't come together, I will have at least learned from the experience. It's good either way. I need to mix papier mache now for working after lunch so wish me luck!!!

Oh, I have an evening presentation to do tonight on my work too. I plan on taking mixed papier mache, a few WIPs and a few finished pieces to talk about what I have been doing and where I am currently selling my work. I know, I'm crazy!!

Have a great day and happy creating!!

Friday, February 20, 2009

A New Bunny WIP

I hadn't planned on making another bunny, but the darn thing was in my head, then I put it in my sketchbook, and then those darn fingers of mine started producing him in papier mache clay. Here he is. He is on an egg shaped body with thin little arms and big paws holding an egg in one hand and an Easter basket in the other. I decided since Easter was in April this year it allowed me time to get him dried, painted and ready for adoption.

The top photo makes the basket look like it sits on the table top, but it doesn't. It is actually about 1/2" higher than the base of the bunny torso.

Here is a close up of the little guy.

Well, I need to get to it so I better pick Jake up and move him onto another chair so that I have a place to sit and work. Recently he has decided the studio chair is the "best" seat in the house so I have put another chair by the table, but he still prefers to sit in mine. He is a cat, so go figure!!

Have a great day and happy creating!!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

New February WIPs

Sorry I didn't get a post up earlier this week, but once I realized my deadlines were approaching a few days earlier due to February having only 28 days (yes, I guess I depend on those 2 to 3 extra days per month) I thought I had better get moving on the sculpting to allow time for them to dry.

Below are 2 of the pieces I'm working on for a March debut. The little pumpkin boy has a sucker in his hand that needs to be a little bit bigger so I will add some clay to that candy delight today, and the skelly figure to his side will have a bucket in his hand holding some goodies.

I have a few more works in progress I will post later this week. One item is new for me and the initial stage has dried successfully so I have my fingers crossed, twirled twice and if I had some sage I would try burning it to keep the evil spirits out of my studio space. Wish me luck!!

Have a great day, mix some paint, clay, ink or whatever you use, and happy creating!!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Valentine's Owl

We had the neatest surprise on Saturday...I looked up in our grape vine covered in the new snow and there sat this little owl. He was only about 12" long, so according to my "Sibley bird guide," what we thought was a Screech owl was more probably a Pygmy owl. He spent the entire day with us napping under the snow covered vine. At about 6:30 p.m., just after sunset, he hopped out to an outer branch and flew away. More than likely the snow had covered the opening to his home so we were a substitute for 12 hours.

I swear, that grape vine brings in more animals. It is a jungle-gym for squirrels, opossums and raccoons, a diner for birds and now it has also served as a roost. Hope your Valentine's Day was as special!!

Off to mix clay and get some sculpting done. I just remembered yesterday that February only has 28 days this year, which shortens the time to get the sculpting and painting done before the next deadline here in the studio. Oh boy!!!

Have a great day and happy creating!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Happy Birthday Chris, Snow, new PFATT blog, STJ Update

A few things today. First I want to wish Mr. Chris Klinger, Designs by CK , a happy "30th" birthday! Chris is this talented Halloween artist that inspires us and is the most prolific blogger I know. He is always good for a laugh and his blog entertains me daily, plus his newly revised website and a rocking new paper doll, Marie, (current auction.) Chris is "good people," as a family member use to say, and he encourages and promotes the rest of us in this blogging world we write and show our work in. He does the most exquisite line work and with the addition of watercolor in some of his pieces has just made a niche for himself nobody else can even approach. Have a great day and weekend big guy!! By the way, Joycee, Enchanted Productions, really did a great job on that Michael Jackson doll she sent the birthday boy. Go give his work a look and drool on the gifts he has received. Once you do, you will know why we love him and his work!!

Now for the second thing...well, it was forecast and they were pretty much on target with this forecast so I guess it wasn't that BIG of a surprise. This is the view out of our front door...there is a street there. This is just since a little before 7:00 this morning. They are thinking we will have about 7" by the end of this and I'm not going out in my little car today. I will try to ship out tomorrow to any of you that made a recent purchase.

And...taadaaaa, the PFATT-ies have started a new blog!! Very exciting stuff for all of us. It gives us a new format to keep you updated on what new items are available from this fabulous group of artist on eBay, and links to each members blog. Be sure to sign up as a follower so that as updates occur you can keep track of the new posts and ...giveaways. Yes, I said it, giveaways!!! I will be providing a piece this year as will all of the wonderful PFATT members so don't miss out!!

That's it for today!!!

Oh no it isn't...oopy, if you have not been over to SpookyTime Jingles make the move now. The updates came up last night at midnight, and "my oh my" is there some talent in this group I am privileged to be associated with!! This is a fabulous online marketplace of holiday whimsical art and the artists really outdid themselves this month. Go peek, you will be glad you did!!

Have a great Valentine's Day and happy creating!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Bopper Peek

I created another Pumpkin bunny, this one is named "Bopper". Do you remember that song when you were little about a little rabbit hopping through the forest that scooped up field mice and bopped them on the head? Well, it really wasn't a "real" rabbit, it was our boy Bopper. He always enjoyed dressing up as a rabbit, even as a tiny pumpkin boy, and he also liked chasing poor little field mice through the underbrush and bopping them. Now he didn't bop them to really hurt them, he just liked watching them circle in a daze from their bopping buzz. That is the "Halloween" in this little fellow.

Bopper is also a delivery Pumpkin Bunny for the Easter Rabbit. He has a twin brother, Chopper and the two of them have a younger brother, smaller in frame, named Hopper. (You saw Hopper last month) Their mother had this rhyme thing going on when she named her boys.

Bopper is shown here wearing a lovely aqua German glass glitter bow tie, and giving us a lovely bunny type can actually see he blacked out his other teeth to make his upper incisors look more rabbit-like.

Tonight, just after midnight it turns to Friday the 13th (happy birthday Mr. CK!!), and SpookyTime Jingles opens it doors for another month of creative offerings from a group of artist I feel honored to be associated with!! I have seen some of the sneak peeks and my, oh my, does it look like another great month!!

Speaking of Friday the 13th (again, happy birthday Chris!!), our forecast here is for 7 to 11 inches of snow. No joke!!! This is the time of year that if we get a big snow storm, it can be nasty. They are giving us a 100% chance of snow with 30 mph winds and temps falling during the day down to 8 degrees overnight. We were in the 50s just a few days ago so the yo-yo has started into the spring months. Keep your fingers crossed for us that we miss the heaviest of the snow!
I'm off to the grocery to get a few things just incase!

Have a great day and happy creating!!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Skelly Rabbit

Another peek at the SpookyTime Jingles works coming up this month. This is Skelly Rabbit...he likes bling so he has on his pinkish German glass glitter bow tie (thank you Annie for getting the glitter out to me so fast) and matching button covers. He has icy blue eyes, ears and vampire bunny slippers, and carries a basket full of eggs. A creature attracted to anything sparkly you must hide your jewelry, flashy attire or even your aluminum foil from this little guy when he makes delivery on Easter morning. He has this bizarre idea that if he leaves an egg, it is okay to put something shiny back in his basket to take home for his personal enjoyment. Okay, he is a bit of a kleptomaniac...he is a skelly after all.

Hope you like the little fellow!! Another something tomorrow!!

Have a great day and happy creating!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Just A Peek

Here is a sneak peek at another one of the SpookyTime Jingles offerings for February. This is the little Skelly figure you saw earlier in clay wearing the oversized top hat with bunny ears. He is in lavender, green, cream with overtones of orange blushing his face. I didn't show you the whole figure, just enough to let you get an idea of whether you need to get on SpookyTime Jingles just after midnight in the wee hours on the 13th.

Again, this figure has another set of beautiful see, one of my sisters works in a dentist office and she commented to me about my poor pumpkin boys and skelly figures having missing teeth. I told her there was no dental insurance available for these little guys, which was very sad, so I decided in 2009 there would be a dental program. Not to worry for those of you that like the less than perfect smiles, some of the figures will still have missing teeth in the upcoming months as I get more and more into the Halloween groups.

Such a dapper little guy holding that egg. Oh, since he is a Skelly, I wouldn't advise anyone actually eat that Easter egg...he either licked it, put something in it or dug it up from somewhere. Skelly boys do those kind of things you know.

Have a great day and happy creating!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Last Valentine Piece

I have some great buyers and collectors, and one of them asked me to consider doing a Pumpkin boy piece for Valentine's Day. Well, here he is, "Valentino Lumina". Valentino is the most dashing of the Lumina family brothers, having a full set of teeth courtesy of a great dental program.

He has lovely green eyes, a great smile and he holds his heart to give to his beloved...hmmmm, who will that be?

He wears a fashionable little vest, white shirt and tie and carries an additional heart pendant over his arm. He even has tiny little hearts in the black border on his base.

Hope you like him!
Have a great day and happy creating!

I Think I Made a Mistake

In trying to update my blog this morning I added the gadget for showing when my links update. Is there an easier way of transferring links into this other than one by one? Well, I didn't discover it and I think I have lost some addresses, and so I have stopped. PLEASE, if I had you linked and you disappeared let me know so that I get you back in the address links. Joycee, I caught yours and Carolee's, but that is when I discovered upon opening my existing window your addresses weren't in either list--AHHHHH!!! I figure if I didn't save and reopened a window that eliminated those two, I must have eliminated others. I am so sorry! :-(

Don't be shy about this, I didn't remove anyone on purpose, I'm not that smart!!

Thank you all.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Belly Bunny

I hadn't done a silly bunny yet this year so I thought I'd better correct that by creating a new bunny for 2009. This is "Belly Bunny," a distant relative of The Easter Rabbit. Unfortunately for this little guy, he has a sweet tooth for all things chocolate and loves those fabulous little Jelly Belly jelly beans. Originally they gave him the nickname, "Jelly", but as his tummy got larger and larger as he worked in quality control overseeing Easter treats, they changed his nickname to "Belly." He doesn't mind, he just tops his round little belly with a beautiful bow tie (covered in German glass glitter of course) and he is off to work to find a new jelly bean or chocolate to start his day.

His body is painted like an Easter egg and he has a little tail popping out the back.
"Belly Bunny" no longer delivers confections on Easter morning...he lets the Pumpkin Bunnies handle that now while he lounges and enjoys a Peep.

Have a great day and happy creating!!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Need Some Input

Okay, I need some input. I finished painting this little Halloween egg over the weekend and I am torn. I originally had intended to make him an ornament, but as I continued to paint and sit him on the egg base to dry, I began thinking maybe he would be fine sitting on the base. The egg is 4.5" high without the base. What do you think? Now, if you don't have a blog to leave a comment, send me an email at to give me your thoughts.

The figure is on the front and wraps around the surface and the back has.....

a pattern similar to an Easter egg with a Halloween twist.

Hanging or on an egg base? That is the question.

Have a great day and happy creating!!