Showing posts from May 23, 2010

Long Live the Queen!

Have I told you I love mermaids? Maybe it's the idea of blending two different worlds, maybe it's fantasizing about being Aquaman when I was seven years old in the surf at Coney Island. But there's something wonderful about the idea of people living in a world beneath the sea. What do they used for furniture? Or telephones... well, there, at least, the answer's obvious...
So the above piece came about when I found some atrocious wall deco at TJ MAXX (how often do I say that?). It was a pair of copper colored scallop shell wall hangings. I immediately saw Elizabeth the First-style frilly colors, but from another dimension.
 I wanted to create that feel, but with a certain otherworldliness... if you look closely at the piece, you'll see pearls and green and brown glass gems in her hair... which isn't hair so much as flowing seaweed, with bits of gold and copper leaf pressed into the clay. I did her hair by taking leaf shapes I cut out with cookie cutters and stretc…

That's just how I roll

This post is about one of the other arts I practice. Since 1996, I've been studying martial arts at Quantum, first in Seattle and sometimes at our sister school in San Francisco. Like sculpture, it's something I came to later in my life (I didn't start until I was 36). And, like my other artwork, I hope I'm getting better the longer I do it. I think I am.
 This weekend, I and six of my friends participated in our Red Belt testing. I've been wearing the Red Belt for a couple of years now... but that just meant I got to learn the techniques for that level. On Saturday, I got to show off what I had learned.

The curriculum we have to know at this level is pretty insane... eight belt levels worth of kicks and blocks and punches, nine different kata (all performed in a sequence that runs almost a half hour in itself), grappling techniques, diving, rolling, defending ourselves against people swinging knives, stretching, breathing, TEACHING... not only do you have to kn…