Friday, October 31, 2008

my own new year

Well. Another Halloween has come and gone and I've gotta say I'm not feeling very poppety. On the other hand, I'm fairly certain I turned the proverbial corner today. It can be a subtle thing, that. Impossible to describe, yet unmistakable. Like deja vu, or a hunch. I've always thought of Halloween as 'my christmas.' Possibly I should consider the beginning of November my new year. It often feels that way.
I wanted to say Happy Halloween to all of you. Since I started this blog, you've been shiny spots on even the darkest days. Very Poppety, you are.

So now I experience the last moments of Halloween. I sit in this big empty room. Soon the carpets will be ripped out and replaced with wood. The walls will get a fresh new color and the things that go in here will be thought out and cherished. Anything less will fall away. The drapes are coming down to let in the mountain views by day and stars at night.
Am I talking about a room or describing a metaphor?

Possibly it's the day. Or walking around tonight amongst such good spirited ghouls. I'm thinking that tomorrow, when I wake, I'm going to feel a bit better. Dunno why. But it seems quiet and sure. No fanfare. Just a subtle change in timbre. I hope so.

thank you. g'night

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Return of the Dead....... FORUMS!

Hey guys! Ravyn again, and, just in time for Halloween, the Poppet Planet Forums have been brought back from the dead. And, appropriately for Halloween, the forums have come back mutated somewhat. Muah hah hah hah.

The user table, you know, the piece that holds all the user names, got corrupted and/or deleted. It has been partially reconstructed, with 'dummy names' in place of the original names. But since they are still linked with the posts, if you remember a topic that you posted about, or a comment you made, you can locate your 'dummy name' which will be "Sadly Lost User #X", email me (nora at ravyn dot com) with the dummy name and the ID name you want, and your email address. i will update your ID name and give you a temporary password so you can log in and change it yourself.

Another of the mutations is that the number of posts made by each user has been lost, which will be confusing i guess but we'll manage. ALL the posts are intact, you can go to the forums and view all the discussions. For those of you who are recent arrivals, there is a LOT of good information in those forums, i urge you to check them out!

Thanks very much Michael and DanGuy for your input. You ROCK!

So let's get back to the forums, and get back to sharing our experience and knowledge, and making PoppetPlanet our community again.

- ravyn

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

HALP! I can haz database???

Hi folks, Ravyn here, with a plea for help of the database kind. Earlier this summer the forums broke somehow, i hadn't done anything to them and wasn't watching every day like usual, so i have no clue as to how it happened.

We are using phpBB (2.0 i believe) for our forums, and if you go to the page you will see a table missing error. i know nothing about databases, and i didn't know that simply copying the contents of the forums folders on the server wasn't enough to save a backup of it. So while it looks to me that the database is mostly intact, i don't know for sure how all the data, more than a year's worth of postings, can be salvaged.

Any database-savvy folks out there, please contact me here or email me at nora at ravyn dot com. i'd love to get the forums back up and running so we can get this part of the community going again.


- Ravyn

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Slow, but here. And there. We move forward.

We've had some internet problems and are a week from installation for the new service. So....I'm stuck with dial up until then. Yes....I remember dial up.
How quickly we adjust to high speed. How quickly we take it for granted. sheesh.

On Friday I did an art presentation at Cielo Vista Elementary School for Orion's first grade class. I'm looking forward to more of these and some
workshops. I truly enjoy teaching art. I've always enjoyed the process of creating as much as the creations. And yes, of course, we talked about brains, and thinking, and all the kinds of thinking (like math) that are part of creating art.

We're still in sort of a state of flux. Lots of orders to be shipped out, lots of moving large objects around. Lots of logistical considerations with two studios and more artists.
Still, these are exciting times in many ways. I sense a whole new growh phase artistically.
When the work is good, everything else follows. In my universe, this is true.
Have a good Sunday.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

more poppets pretending to be cats, Zorcon

Today was mostly all day in studio, with a bit of sitting Zorcon, (belongs to Aubrey) He tells me he inherited his name from Jordan's late kitty. Then he ate carrots and the corner of my book, very quickly, when I turned my attention away for a moment.
note: book chewing can sound a lot like carrot chewing, if the chewer is a Guinea pig.

I am now extremely tired. Time for food and no shoes.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Poppets in Fake Pants, Alison and Logan, My Favorite Novel, again and Poppets on Neil Gaiman

POPPETS in FAKE PANTS have arrived for Halloween.

Here's the first line up. More will join us in the next couple of days.

Poppets in Fake Pants are a collaboration of joyful abandon with Alison Tawney and Ben Warren.
I love rubbing brains with these two!

Alison, who is also my daughter, hopes to have her own for-real-bricks-and-mortar-Poppet-emporium one day. I can imagine it. Then again, I can imagine a lot when it comes to Alison. She is, well, of the magical sort.

I also must especially thank both Nora Wright (AKA Ravyn) and Mimi Ko (AKA MimiKo.) I'm not sure anymore which contributed exactly what, but I do recall many ridiculously fun conversations about Poppets in fake pants, and that both of them had great ideas. Thank you!

Poppets in Fake Pants. The more fake, the better. All bets are off here---these are for fun.

Here is Alison, with Logan, who just turned One and who inspires her every day.

And, recently, in other parts of the world:


Photos of Neil and Poppets by Mimi Ko.

Titles by Lisa.

Evil Powers by Neil.

(no poppets were actually harmed.)
And lastly, we've sort of started this conversation in comments for the previous post. My question to you---What novel (or story) have you read and re-read at different points in your life and how do you think these perspectives affect the whole experience/meaning of the work?

Or, if you do revisit a favorite novel or story, why?

Hope you're enjoying your October.


Thursday, October 16, 2008

Mad Poppets, mashed digits, Willows...and Yaks

What was today like?
Dunno yet---it's still going.
So far, there's been an awful lot of yak shaving. It happens that way sometimes. It means that things are getting done, but not exactly the things that were on the list.
We got loads of photos of "Spencer's Brain" which showed itself at VCon.
There's so much going on in this one. It became one of those collaborations where the work happens in shifts and where the artists must be flexible and open minded and where the finished work is different and more than either imagined.
The piece is a bit over 15" tall, has lots of lighting and( of course) mad Poppets in weird glasses.
This morning I dropped a very heavy blender jar. I was sure it would shatter when it hit the tile counter, but fortunately, I broke its fall with my right index fingertip. Yes---my 'main' finger is out of commission, with a nail somewhere between black and purple.
Ben brought me a copy of Wind in the Willows before he even knew I would incorporate it into the Neil Rat piece. Now I'm reading bits of it to Orion every night at bedtime, attempting to end with a cliff hanger and resisting the temptation to read on long after he's sleeping.
It's always good, I believe, to read favorite books at different times in one's life. It can create a rich mosaic of memories and layers and understanding. It certainly has for me.
It's nearly eleven and the house is quiet. I'm heading back to the studio.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

'Tis the season for autumn leaves and rubber rats

Yesterday I bought 408 eyeballs and made art.

Other things happened too, but the eyeballs and the working particularly stand out.

Today Orion was extra clever. Ben and Joyce worked at the other location--Strange II?

Spencer and I went looking for thin solder and tiny LED's. We had Mexican food and bought rubber rats.

One could, possibly, own too many rubber rats. I haven't truly tested that theory yet. Then again, two of the rubber rats I purchased were for other people.

We've begun to put up art in the ebay store for Halloween. It is indeed the beginning of a sale to which more things will be added until Poppets decide Halloween is over, or we all run out of energy.

But for now, we are making.

Good enough.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Plane, Train, Sea Bus. Ben, Lisa and Poppet

Yesterday we saw a dog riding in the back seat of a convertible. The dog was wearing sun goggles. Yes, we are back in Palm Springs, but summer has gone away.

This is a good thing.
Here are some of the photos from Vancouver. Just getting started sorting them all out---we took about 300 photos---but thought instead of waiting I'd put up what I have so far. These are from the first day, before the convention actually started. Ben and I took the sky train and explored Vancouver a bit. I have to say, the people we encountered were some of the nicest and most polite I've ever met.
In some respects, I'm more sad than I've ever been. Even still, I'd rather be sad in October than August----do you get me? I sort of figure you do.

We're getting ready to put up lots of art in the store for the Halloween season. Likely by the 15th we'll have lots of Poppets in fake pants---they do love their costumes, don't they? Masks and brain o lanterns and such. Got a terrific Poppet Puppet from Robert Johnson Jr. I love collaborations with Robert. He always surprises me in wonderful ways.

I'm truly looking foward to the season. After all, Halloween is more than just a day---it's a lifestyle. On that one, I'm sure we agree.
more pics tomorrow. g'night

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Vancouver reset and Poppet's Vision

Ben and I have returned from VCon. It was a rich experience, challenging and inspiring. It was good to get back to work.

There seems to be about a million details that need my attention right now, so while I get to those, and while I upload the photographs from the convention, you can take a look at the visuals for my artist's program. I wanted to make something a bit more fun than a traditional slide show. David Kirkpatrick, who donated the laboratory glassware we used to create the program book cover, helped me create
POPPET'S VISION It's mostly the kinds of images I post here, but I did some sequencing, David and I both did some stop motion and he did a good job of putting it all together. (Lots of the images are Mimi Ko photographs---thanks to her.)
Thanks, David!

I wish you could have been there for VCon. It was a good convention on many levels and I met talented, smart people and came away with new friendships.