Wednesday, April 30, 2008
"You're going to check your email now, I guess."
"Mom, you're such a geek."
"Beachfront property. Any day now."
And, faithful as ever, a computer-generated Caltech Seismology Dept shake map was in my inbox, showing a 4.2 about 27 miles south.
The winds have been wicked all day. I took Orion to the park in the afternoon and the kids ducked and covered for blowing sand several times.
Then there were the devastating storms in Virginia this week. Now a bit of CNN ought to put me right in the mood to hide under the covers with my Poppets.
Funny how it doesn't quite work that way. Seems the more aware I become of the uncertainty and sadness the world is, the more I appreciate every good thing
here and now.
Create, live, play, learn.
But for now, sleep.
Take care out there, all of you, but don't forget the occasional joyful abandon. Find something that resonates and go hog-wild.
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Friday, April 25, 2008
Remember that thing I said about operating on the edge of failure? I'm living that one as I type this. I'm still deep into work on several projects, a couple of which are a bit beyond anything I've done before.
And stretch, and stretch and one and two....
It's a workout, difficult and satisfying.
Still, in between, the studio buzzes along. We're deep into spring now, with summer hell around the corner. Last night I listened to Pete listing reasons to move out of the desert. Among them were:
"Ow, I burned my butt on the carseat."
"Ow, I burned my hand on the shopping cart."
"Ow, I can't have a dog."
"Ow, I looked at the sky."
"Ow, my shoes are melting."
and so on.
Summers here are tough. Springs here are beautiful, with the dread of summer.
So we decided that about mid to late May we'll have a "Bug Out" sale in the honor of bees (live and dead) in the studio, summer outside and the general state of mind of your artist.
But here's the thing---when the work is good, everything is good. Summer dread or not.
Orion and I are still swimming in our rubber suits. It's another one of those mental challenges, to force oneself to jump into cold water.
The little old man was flying his kite yesterday. I met a man who picks up his son from school every day on a skateboard. He uses a pole, gondolier-style. I asked him yesterday if I could photograph them, and he said yes.Quick note about ebay: Rebecca (Jordan's Mom) brought to my attention that spammers are contacting some of my collectors with offers of 'second chance offers.' If you get one, it's bogus. I don't do second chance offers. If something doesn't sell, it goes into the store or to a convention or a family member claims it for his/her own.
If you do get one, let me know so I can follow up. Evil, evil spammers!
Ok. I'm off to work on projects, some Poppet and some not.
Have a great Friday
Sunday, April 20, 2008
I've had a great week working with Larry Niven on Strange Light. It's a mental workout on many levels, and a joyful eater of notebooks, pens and hours.
In addition, I finished the cover for the May edition of Electric Velocipede, an all-female edition that can be pre-ordered here. I've read some of the stories. Definitely worth getting. And, on the cover, Poppets!
Indeed, I built a set using a much-appreciated puzzle panel and yes, I set it on fire to create this image.
Such trickery. Such fun. It felt like play, but for the deadline and other deadlines that happened to converge this week.
This seems to be happening more often. Probably not a bad thing. Likely I need to be reminded occasionally that this stuff I do is a real job. You'd think I'd get that, given the hours I work. I don't, until I have to work hours when I don't want to work. This month has been particularly grueling. Luckily I have Pete, and now Angie, to help me remember to eat, make it to my dental appointments and not walk off cliffs.
Because when I do things that feel like play, I tend to forget things I shouldn't.
Oh yes, the dental appointments. And pain aplenty. I'm looking on the bright side of this one (ouch, even) deciding I'm happy to be at the dentist now, and not then, and that this is the price I pay for living so long. Ok, one more--- Owwwww. Then, in two weeks, more.
I put a few new things into the store. Some Little Pink's (the original 2 inch ones that no one has seen for ages) and some signed(by many authors), numbered limited edition copies of Strange Attraction.
Pete pointed me to this sweet circle of Poppets on Fond of Snape.
I like seeing photos of Poppet collections. It's sort of like working with authors. The work looks different, and more magical, out of the studio and into the worlds of others.
That's about it for now.
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
Thursday, April 10, 2008
Saturday, April 05, 2008
I'm working on keeping a better notebook. I love notebooks, blank journals, sketch books, but I've never been good at sticking with one from start to finish. I tend to scribble like a mad scientist when I'm visualizing. Possibly I'm afraid to let details escape before I can capture them on paper. It's a discipline, I'm learning, to keep a good one. Bent's notebook is beautiful, archival, filled with drawings and the ultra neat notes of a serial killer.
But, I'm gaining on it. I remind myself to slow down, take time to write things out. I've pre-numbered my pages, so I won't be tempted to tear any out. And I've noticed that I'm developing a decent habit of reaching for this notebook---instead of whatever scrap of paper is nearest.
The other part is always knowing where the notebook is.
Anyway, if these things don't work, my next plan is to reach into my 'other' life, when I did keep crazy-meticulous notes, in the laboratory. I found a great place to order lab books (they have great sketch books and project books too.) The Book Factory Their site/service and books are great.
Here's a weird little bit that likely belongs in the Nuts and Bolts Forum. Bent was watching a program on one of the science channels called "Mystery Dinosaur." The paleontologist needed to make a mold of some of the fossils, and instead of building a molding box from wood or paper, he used Lego blocks. They're tight fitting, don't stick to mold rubber and can be configured into any shape he needs. Super-Maker smart!!! We ordered two big base panels (Amazon stores)and a pile of blocks. We'll use one in the studio for molds, the other will be mounted in the wall of Orion's room, so he can build 'sideways.' Let him learn a bit about gravity.
I've been really deep into working on "Strange Machines" and "Strange Light." The machine is moving along nicely---thanks to the puzzle panels! It's going to be all mechanical, no electricity.
And I have the first image for "Strange Light" partially finished.
That said, I'll get the "Strange Roads" signed copies and "Spook" Poppets in the store this weekend. Please forgive me! I've had a great week of studio and geek out, totally immersing myself into book projects.
But today is Saturday, and I promised Orion we'd check out the pool today. We may need wetsuits, or we may brave the cold or we may wait another day. The mercury will decide for us.
Have a great weekend.
Thursday, April 03, 2008
Larry Niven! We went to lunch, where the food was terrible. Really. But the conversation was great. By the last half hour, we had the seed of a story idea for Strange Light and are continuing our discussion through emails.
It was great spending time with Peter. I'll put the signed copies with "Spook" Poppets in the store tomorrow. And we've made some extra "Spook" Poppets for the people who've already ordered books.