Saturday, January 28, 2012

Slacking or Sliding

Good Evening All!
Hope everyone has had a fruitful week....actually, I guess it's two weeks. It doesn't seem possible but here we are fifteen days later. I feel like I've been slacking off. The first week after my daughter went back to California was a total blur. And a total waste....didn't get anything done. Well, I guess that's not completely true.....I did do some more research. Just now getting back into things.

Last week I got absolutely nothing done on Forrest. Just couldn't find the 'energy' to be creative. That seems to be passing now. I did go out last weekend and pick up some WED Clay (from Laguna Clay). I've decided that I'm going to try something different with Forrest. I've used WED clay before and I really like the way it flows. If you've never used it...all I can say is try it! You'll like it! "Hey Mikey, He likes it!" (just gave my age away LOL).
Some of the research I was doing, as you know, was for the RenFest and DragonCon. I have come across many, many ideas, techniques and web pages....too many! The internet is wonderful but it sure can cause sensory overload. Anyway, I came across some mask makers that use Neoprene to create their masks (some artists use it for props and such, too). I have experimented with latex before and was really pleased with the outcome. Neoprene is a commercial, industrial strength rubber (think latex on steroids). Unlike latex, neoprene 'hardens' as it dries. Making it perfect for masks and things along those lines. I have also discovered that it comes in white (dries to a creamy yellow) and black....that could make for some interesting projects. :)  It also accepts all kinds of paints... lacquers, enamels and acrylics.
So I have decided to sculpt Forrest's face in WED clay and cast him in neoprene. I haven't decided if I'm going to cast more than one or if I will do a single 'pull'. That one is still floating around my head.
I did manage to get some sculpting done today (yes, I know, I'm jumping all over my timeline). So far he looks fantastic and I am extremely happy with his 'flow'.
a peek at Forrest's face

The creative ideas for DragonCon are still swirling around my head ~ like a freaking whirlpool. Still having issues deciding on a fluid concept. Actually, on one fluid concept. I have several that are taking shape but none of them have become concrete yet. It's becoming annoying...every time I see something I think 'wow, that would really go with my costume'.....but then I realize 'in order to use that I would have to remove this piece or that piece'. I guess that' what I get for having an "artist's brain". Some times it's really hard to turn off the creative process and just see things for what they are. I've given myself until the end of the month to finalize a costume....guess what? it's the end of the month. Got to get focused and make a choice in the next couple of days.....stay tuned for the final decision. 
On the plus side I did go out and pick up the material for my doublet for the RenFest. YAY! I had some material that I bought ( two years ago) to use for a doublet. Now I can actually put it all together. So my dear readers, be focus will shift back and forth between dolls / sculpting / molding / casting and now sewing and patterns. Some times I think I need to clone myself so I can do more projects. :)  
Wanna see the material? Aw, come on now, you know you do...
the one of the left is the original fabric i bought a while back

I've been slacking off on my exercising as well.....sort of. Last week I started P90 again as well as going to the gym. I've been using the tread mill at the gym. I'm doing about 3 miles in 45 minutes. I watch people get on the machines next to me and run. The whole time I'm thinking 'wow, I must be moving slow'. Well, I got a look at the screen on the machines around me.....I'm walking faster than most of them are running. It made me feel better about not running. I've gotten my speed up between 4 and 5. I have no idea what that compare to but it's fairly fast. I also work my incline up between 4 and 5 percent too. Which kicks my butt some days. I did both last week and the beginning of this week and then just....blah. No energy or desire to work out. I made myself a I just have to stick to it. I've got to get my butt in gear. I want to get in shape for the RenFest - I know, it's a goofy reason, but hey, it's a reason! Hosen fit fairly tightly, can't have a saggy butt or a big gut!! :)  My wife has been knocking it out of the park! She's down another two sizes! I'm so proud of her! I'll have to kick it into high gear...she can't have a chunky husband, right? LOL!

I don't watch a whole lot of television. I have a few things that I do watch, Castle on Mondays, I like Nathan Fillion - Firefly is one of my favorite shows, Face Off on Wednesdays and Merlin on Fridays. I did however manage to squeeze a movie in...last weekend, I think. It was Cowboys & Aliens. It was pretty good. Good story, good amount of action, the special effects were good too. However, it was 'James Bond' in a cowboy outfit. I think Mr. Craig has been type cast. Although I haven't seen The Girl With The Dragon Tatoo yet. Maybe that will be my next movie. Who knows when that will be though. I will have to say that I would love to look like Daniel. I could be happy with that body! LOL!! Too bad I'd have to use a chain saw to come anywhere close to looking like that. :)
pretty good movie

I guess that's about all for now. Hopefully I will have lots to tell you the next time around....which I will try very hard to do sooner than two weeks. I try to post every week but time just seems to slip away when you're not looking. 

Until then....

Be Good, Be Safe, Be Happy!!

p.s.  Just in case you were wondering...ONLY 277 days left! (till Halloween, of course!)  :)

Friday, January 13, 2012

Sad little Friday....

Hi Everyone!
Hope this has been a good week for you.
It was a pretty decent one on my end. Til today anyway.....

My baby leaves for California tomorrow morning. 7:30 am.  :(
She's going to finish up school and get her license. I'm happy for her but I'm going to miss her a whole lot!
She's excited and I'm glad...but it doesn't make it any easier to know that she'll be on the west coast. One of my co-workers told me today that I should just get an apartment in California and be done with it. I wish I was in a position to do that. But alas, I am not.
My daughter told me today that this day was just dragging by.....I said no, it's flying. It'll be weird for a while, again. Until I get used to her not being in the house.
Okay, enough of that.....or I'm gonna be depressed.

Guess what we had last night? Give up? Snow! Well, flurries. Nothing stuck. But it was still really strange to see it. I was shocked. As were the dogs....they just looked at me like "what is this stuff?"  It's been really cold the last couple of days. Down to 25 last night. I know, some of you are thinking "that's cold?" Well, here in middle Georgia, it is! Considering that three days ago it was 68 degrees. The high today was 45. I've had enough winter now, someone can turn up the heat! :)  LOL

Did anyone watch Face Off? The new season started this past Wednesday. It was really good. Very inspirational. The new contestants seem very talented. I think that SyFy should change up the judges though. I mean, they are quite talented and very accomplished. But.....if they're gonna to have new contestants they should at least have some new judges. Ve Neill and Patrick Tatopoulos are both 'helpful'. They give great constructive criticism. Glenn Hetrick on the other hand is simply a jerk. He wants to rip everything apart and offers no insight. I'd be hard pressed not to hand it right back to him. This season looks like it's going to be good though. They started off with a boy versus girl contest. The women had their sh*t together right from the word go. The men struggled but managed to do some decent work. Ultimately, the women won. They reworked the Wizard of Oz characters. I really liked the witches from both teams. The women's scarecrow was awesome. The lion from both teams were really good too. The tin man...well, they both sucked. In fact, that's what got the first person sent home. If you like being should watch. There are some really great ideas and some fantastic artist.


here comes da judge....
Gleen, Ve, and Patrick

season 2 contestants

Speaking of creative (hows that for a segway?).....
Forrest is coming along fantastic! He's been extremely cooperative throughout the whole process (so far).
I have gotten his hooves sculpted, painted, glossed, attached and furred. I am thrilled with how they have come out. I'm getting really excited about beginning his face. I'm hoping that I can get out what I have in my head....there's a lot of jumbled up thoughts running wild about what he should look like. But I have a few definites that will be put in....
the hooves ~ sculpted, painted (flat black) and glossed

Forrest ~ waiting for his nails to dry   :)

waiting for the adhesive to dry on the 'fur'

side shot. look pretty good, don't they?

and a front shot

I picked up a new (new to me, anyway) magazine this week too. It's called Stuffed - the crafting of softies.
I've thumbed through it a few times and have been really impressed with what I've seen. I'm hoping to sit down and read it this weekend. I'll let you know if there's anything extremely interesting in it.

gotta read it!

Got me one more new follower too! YAY!
Hi Marijke!
I didn't see a blog from Marijke. So I guess at this point it's just HI!!  :)
Thanks for following along!

This happened this week too.....Tuesday, I think.....Can you guess what it is?

did you guess?
it looks like a picture of the moon that i took...
but it's not.
believe it or not, it's a street light that i can see 
from my back porch. the fog was so thick it
added an eerie glow to everything. 
i thought it was kind of cool looking. :)

I guess that's about it for this post. Wish me luck getting through tomorrow. Hopefully my wife and my daughter will keep the waterworks under control at the airport. Otherwise, they may get me going. *fingers crossed*

till then...
Be Good, Be Safe, Be Happy!


Saturday, January 07, 2012

NC 17 + Magic

Good Saturday Mornin' to y'all!
I hope that everyone has had an enjoyable (at least tolerable) week. It was a hectic and long one - especially since it was a four day week. I have been working on this, that and the other this past week. Some completed projects, some not. Many, many, many ideas running through my head for the up coming months. :)

So, I think I will start with the completed ones......
Harley is finished. YAY! He's quite adorable, even if I do say so myself! His face, wings, hat and hair are finished and he's sitting here looking very pleased with himself. Wanna see? Of course you do....
Harley's new hat (and hair)

Harley sitting with Forrest (who's head is now attached)

Isn't he cute? I am very happy with how he turned out. I think he is too. 

Now, who knew that Forrest was into bondage. Got your attention now, didn't I? :)  I was prepping Forrest for his paperclay work and it made me laugh when I thought of this little guy 'tied' up. He's not happy about it but is being very cooperative about the whole ordeal. I have also managed to get the base for his hooves and eyes cut from styrofoam. That way they're not heavy but sturdy. And I don't have to use a butt load of paperclay or wait weeks for it to completely dry. I'm including some shots so you can continue to see his progress....
Forrest all wrapped up for some fun ;)

basic shapes for his hooves and eyes

Forrest totally wrapped ~ head to toe

Last night (Friday) was the season premiere of MERLIN! It seems like it's been forever since the last season. I am thrilled that it's back on! Yes, I geeky-ness is showing. I don't care...I like the show and it was worth waiting for. Who knows, maybe I'll even pick up some ideas for costuming for the RenFest or DragonCon. I mean, even in the first show of the season they have attempted to kill off Merlin ~ Now, of course, we all know that's not gonna fly. But we'll have to wait and see how they're going to get out of this one.  :)  I love the locations they shoot at and the costumes (speaking of which, a whole 'nother subjet. See below). I think I should have been born in the 'Camelot' period (wait....maybe I was...hhhmmmmm). Can you imagine living then? I know it wasn't easy, but it just seems so much simpler and much more laid back. I mean, who wouldn't want to live in a castle? LOL!
Camelot (I could spend a week just wandering around this place)

Merlin ~ played by Colin Morgan

Arthur ~ played by Bradley James

Merlin is a Syfy channel import from England. So they are always behind in the shows. I do believe season 4 (the new one) has already shown, or is episodes ahead over there. I know that some of the fans were getting  quite restless about when Syfy would begin the new season. Can't wait for more... :P

In my quest for a pattern for a doublet / jerkin I have come across some absolutely stunning ones. Some are very simplistic and others are totally over the top. I've been trying to keep my head about what I want to make. I'm afraid that if I go too 'fancy' I will never get it completed in time. But I don't want to go too basic either.....all these dilemmas. Wouldn't things be so much easier if all we had to worry about was what we were going to wear? I think I just heard a collective sigh from all the women out there. LOL!
Anyway, after searching and searching, and being overwhelmed by all the beautiful work, I came across this guy...Rober in Ojai. His work is stunning! His costumes make me extremely jealous. He also does sculptures, baking and wonderful masks. His jerkins have filled my head with many ideas. Hopefully, I can pull them off. Ha! I've included his flickr page (above) so you can see more of what he does. And (below) I've added some of the photos that I really like.

aren't these freakin' fantastic?

this mask has truly inspired me ~ maybe for the RenFest

this is one that he custom made for a customer

Makes me want to run out and start buying material to use. I can't quite tell what his masks are made first I thought they were leather. But after a closer look they appear to be more 'material'. I think I'm going to send him an email and tell him how much I like his masks and jerkins. Who knows, maybe he'll share some secrets with me. :)

I got an email this week from Costumes and Trim. I get the newsletter from them and I am always amazed at what they have to share. You should go and check them out when you get a chance. Anyway, in the latest newsletter they are gearing up for a trip / class. OMFG! I want to go to this so badly. But, alas, it is too far out of my reach (by my latest financial calculations). They are having their class in Cortona, Tuscany, Italy. I would love to be there! They will be there during the Archidado Festival. It's a medieval festival. I'm sure it will be simply amazing. They are using it as a backdrop for costume making for dolls. I can only imagine the inspiration that will come out of this setting. Anyone want to send me to Italy? I'm open to donations and charity. And I am not above begging. LOL! I've posted the link to Adele's page. You will have to go and look for yourselves as I am not sure about the 'sharing' thing. You have to be a member to get the newsletter so I don't want to step on any toes. But, it's worth the time to go and look! 

this is a shot from one of the classes
(I don't think this will hurt - it's on the
'classes' page of the main site)  :)

I see I have two new followers....YAY!
Hi Mary Ann! I love your blogs! The mice are so cute! And Russell is adorable!
Hi Perdita!
So glad you all could join me!!

I guess that's all for now.
Be Good, Be Safe and Be Happy!


Sunday, January 01, 2012


I hope that everyone had a splendid New Years last evening. I hope that you celebrated it with family and friends.
It's time to put the old aside and begin anew. All the possibilities of things to come! My wish for you is to be healthy, happy and prosperous. May All You've Wished For Come True.....
and now for something to ponder throughout the day and for the rest of the year...
"If you like what the past can do, just think what tomorrow will do....Don't Stop Believing" (Fleetwood Mac).

Where shall we begin...hhhmmmmmm.
I think I shall begin with the festivities. Our neighbors invited us for dinner last night. Around 11 or 12 I saw Barry out back building a fire.....That's noon, not midnight. He built it up and stoked it, got it nice and hot (all the while Pixie is barking at him like a fool). Then suddenly there was a big pot over top of the flames. Hhhhmmmm, I wonder what he's cooking. It cooked all day while he babysat it.
open fire roast

 Turns out it was a deer roast. It was yummy. Lots of vegetables. I was very impressed. I'm not a big venison eater. But this was very good, very tender and not at all 'gamey'. Amy made two loaves of bread to go with it, which was tasty all by itself. Ate entirely too much. Had margaritas too! Only had one, before we ate, because I knew I would be driving to the Gold Nugget Drop. My daughter did my wife's makeup while we were waiting for the roast to finish.....she's really good with the makeup.

And for dessert...I made (yes, I bake too) a double layered white cake with vanilla frosting and three fruit marmalade. While this was not one of my 'fancier' cakes (I can do all the piping and roses, my mother's doing) it was very tasty and perfectly acceptable as a dessert cake. :)
a layer of 3 fruit marmalade(a whole jar)

quick and simple vanilla frosting

After dinner we sat by the fire for a while. I was glad Barry made the got cold really fast after the sun went down. I had to run home and get our was so nice when we came over that we didn't bring them. 
Around 9:30 we all packed up in the car and went to the Gold Nugget Drop in Villa Rica. There were quite a few people there - they said that this was the largest crowd they've had since the start of the Mill two years ago. This was also the inaugural Gold Nugget Drop. So I can now say that I was at the first drop of this big ugly rock. LOL. There was a band called 7 Sharp 9. They were very good. They did a lot of cover tunes as well as some of their own.  
Around 11:50 they started all the hoopla about the count down and people moved to get a better view of the big fake gold rock (Gold Nugget). We counted down 3...2...1 - Happy New Year! There were fireworks - which I will have to admit were 100% better than the show that was put on for July 4th. People danced around and hollered and screamed, hugged and kissed. I'm glad we went. Of course by this time my feet and hands were frozen solid. It was 38-40 degrees, which wasn't bad at first, but we were sitting on a brick wall which didn't help. We hung around and listened to the band until about 12:30 and then left. It was nice, cause everyone was pretty much gone by then, so traffic was a breeze. 
sevensharpnine (bad picture, i know)

the Gold Nugget

I got some more work done on Harley too. He's coming along wonderfully. Just a couple more minor additions and he will be ready...
Harley's new face

In a couple of weeks my daughter, Jenifer, will be going back to California. I miss her already! She's excited to be going back. She finished her schooling, now she's going after her license. It's going to be weird not having her around the house (again). 

And on the Big Arse Front....Carma took a couple pics for me. It's coming along slowly but I can definately see the difference. What do think? Will I ever be 'skinny'? Not likely, but hopefully more so than now. :) 
Just gotta keep at it
the before (the after from  the last time)

the after (now) goofy face and all :)

I noticed my Kale yesterday when I had the dogs out....I'm not sure if it likes the cold (or should I say cold, hot, cold, hot) or if the poor thing is just confused. Either way, it looks really good. I really like the dark purples of the leaves. :)
two of the Kale out along side of my house. pretty aren't they?

It appears that I have a new follower too! Hi Le Coffre D'Emile! Welcome to my blog. I love the 'old tyme' look of your blog!

Oh hell! I almost forgot......
Usually before I do a post I look at the blogs I follow to see what's going on and who's doing what....
well, my last post I did backwards, I posted then read the others. Stupid move, I discovered after the fact that Ms. Susie did a wonderful little post about me (you can see it here). I was very touched (that's what my friends say too). Then I saw the picture of Lord Cucurbita....I was blown away that Susie had put him on her tree. After the excitement settled a dawned on me.....Wow, that must be a huge tree, cause he is not tiny. He's 12 inches seated. Susie - I want to see a photo of the whole tree. My curiosity is running wild now. My mother used to get giant trees (floor to ceiling, 18 foot ceilings). Thanks for the post Susie, I really appreciate it! 
Lord Cucurbita in the tree.
I so stole this from Susie's blog!

I hope you all have a wonderful day and a fantastic year! 
Be Good, Be Safe and most of all Be Happy!!