Showing posts from April 4, 2010

The Way Things Work

I use the things that I come across.... nuts, wires, hubcaps. T ake things and turn them around and let them suggest faces, characters, moments in time. This one happened when I came across this "Scales of Justice" tie tack.
It kind of looks like a Bandit's mask (if you look at it just right). I didn't really know what the mood of the piece was going to be until I put the little beads in to make the eyes. with just a little adjustment in the angle, the face went from deadpan and emotionless to terrified! A simple cut into the clay to make the quivering lip and I had the moment when it was time to face the music!

"The Way Things Work" is available in my Etsy store.

The International House Of Panic

Ideas really do just come out of thin air sometimes. I really should say sometimes they come right out of the atmosphere...

Here's how one happened... one step at a time.
One day I was driving past a stripmall near my house. 
It had the usual stuff, multiplex, market, Starbucks
and an IHOP. 
The International House Of Pancakes!
I can remember being a kid and being excited the first time I heard we would
be going there! It had to be fancy, right?

But this one wasn't one of those cool 60's style behemoths.
With the massive blue roof and the cathedral ceilings inside. Not even its own crowded parking lot. No... it was one of those crappy modern era ones that tries to hide its true nature behind beige wallpaper, squeezed in between an optician's office and a dry cleaners. The kind that always makes me think globalization was a raw deal for everyone involved.

I don't think I had even noticed it before. It seemed so shy and insecure, it practically  screamed "Eat somewhere …

Infinite Love... Limited Patience

Compassion is something I struggle with every day. How do you let go of anger when you feel you've been hurt by someone you care about? How do help someone who you'd much rather smack? How do you avoid seeing insults and slights in the callous behavior of strangers? And how do you step back and let people make their own mistakes...?

I like to create pieces about overworked angels... spirits that are doing important work that they love, but really could use a break.  I often do clown pieces that have the same feel to them.I'm sure there are days even Superman puts super plugs in his ears and says "Let Batman deal with this one".

"Infinite Love... Limited Patience" is available in
my Etsy Store

Click on any image to enlarge it.


"You have the right to remain happy" 

In the history of costume, has there ever been anyone as gleefully out there as Carmen Miranda?
I know Lady Gaga is going for the outlandish these days, but there's something really disturbing about her look sometimes.And Elton John in his prime went for the car, but he'd do the full body duck suit and other conceptual marvels. Ms. Miranda just needed a bunch of bananas and something to hold them to her head. She'd slap that fruit on, match it with a sexy dress and sell it all through the sheer force of her talent and personality.  I have to respect that.

"You have the right to remain happy" appears courtesy of The Douglass-Geer Collection.

the "S" word

Tonight, I'd like to talk about a different "piece"of my work.

(Look it's only been 5 days and already, he's doing fill in pieces!)

Nooo... when I decided to do this, I laid out an entire week's worth of subjects and pictures, so I could just grab one each day and go at it. But as a very wise artist once said to me, "Your sculpture is a conversation between you and the material". I take that to mean sometimes you have to let a thing tell you what it wants to be and help it get there. And after the last few days, I feel strangely happy and full of wonder at the way things work out.

So let me tell you about the kids.

After I got done with my regular trip to the Armadillo Christmas Bazaar in Austin (where I met the above mentioned artist, Mr. Tom Farr), I jetted home for a week to teach the kids of Edmonds Elementary to do what I do. I brought in clay, they brought in... Stuff , and we went to work.

13 classes in 3 days, an hour in each, anywhere from 5 to …

Really, who DOESN'T want rhinestone cat's eye glasses?

This piece is called "Remember Kids, Closets are for Hangers"- It owes equal parts to Bruce Springsteen, Dame Edna, and that kid on "Glee".

I'm not sure what started me on my fascination with rhinestone cat's eye glasses... I know that I first found a little tiny pair down in San Francisco at the gift center (this was in the days before I knew that every major city has a wholesale district where you can go and buy unbelievably tacky costume jewelry in bulk). As soon as I incorporated the glasses into a piece, I knew everything had changed. Silly, flashy, extravagant and somewhat conservative at the same time, they just made me HAPPY!

The image I get from them is one of a secret life, a person with a wild side just waiting to cut loose... the "Library Lady" after hours. A great big Australian dude can put them on and suddenly he's DAME EDNA! I don't know how... they must possess some magical properties.Not to create a different person so muc…

And there was much rejoicing!

I had another piece planned for today as well... but life happens. Today I was up at the crack of hell so that I could flyer a neighborhood on the far side of the Hill in my Quest for Betty. To make a long story short, yesterday I dropped into my favorite Seattle Lesbian Karaoke bar, the Wild Rose, to post a flyer, since so many folks there know Brenda and Betty. The Bartender was wonderful , helpful and caring. And I met a pet psychic at the bar. I'm so tired now, I can't be sure of her name (but her sister's name is Babs). I think it was Sam... I'll check. She put her hand over the picture of Betty and said "You're right, she was taken, by a boy. But she got away, now she's with a woman over on the far side of Capitol Hill and she's been injured... on the right side of her face."... When you're alone in the dark and someone strikes a match, you might as well use the light. I ran out, posted my last two flyers of the day over on the other …