Saturday, January 31, 2009

Poppet Vision Saturday


we figured a few things out.

It was interesting.

It seems...

important, in a way that hasn't yet revealed itself.

But mostly it's a day

we're living,

cat, guinea pig and silly humans,

in the presence of poppets.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Quick and Important Note

I got an email from Jonathan (thanks Jonathan!) reminding me that tomorrow's David Letterman Show will air the edited-out routine that Bill Hicks taped for the October 9, 1993 show.

You may or not know I'm a fan (scroll down the sidebar--between Falling Down and Neil's Poppet Oracular Oracle). Like everyone else, I've never seen the edited routine, so can't really vouch for it. But I can vouch for Bill Hicks because, despite the fact that sometimes he went to places that made me grimace in discomfort, his work has influenced my work and my personal philosophy.

My appreciation for his work is constant and unshakable. If you watch this routine and don't see whatever it is you imagine I'm referring to, dig a little deeper. You'll see that this guy tried to help us, silly humans.

my mood? inspired. I'm off to the studio, with steaming coffee cup in hand and apron strings trailing behind.


Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Persistent Dreams of Flight

Mostly we were inspired by H. G. Wells. Well, we're always inspired by H. G. Wells. And we got this very cool plasma bulb. And madness ensued. Madness of the Most Excellent Poppet sort.

And that, dear friends and co-conspirators, was that.

This is our second bell jar. The first is Spencer's Brain and the third, which you'll see soon, belongs to David Kirkpatrick.

Yes, of course we noticed the video is sideways. We made coffee, then We pondered whether to fix the video or get right back into the studio...

Monday, January 26, 2009

Wide Awake...for a moment

Many years ago I was married to David Snellings (still a great friend) and we lived in a huge, drafty old house in Georgia that had once served as a school. We had some electrical problems and upon installing new wiring, discovered a staircase we didn't know existed. It had been walled up decades earlier. Apparently it was a service way for domestic help to access the upper floors without entering the main hall. Now it was an odd little nook, concealing another nook that was once either a closet or dumbwaiter. It lent itself perfectly to the concept of 'bigger inside than out.'
Spencer and I have a shared love of documentaries, and most recently we discovered Alan Berliner's Wide Awake. It's extremely well done on every level and among the many things to be gleaned from it, (we both have bouts of insomnia) was the fact that working relentlessly with no down time is not good for our brains---and not conducive to sleeping well.
So yesterday, we spent an afternoon listening to music, and playing guitar and flute. I hadn't picked up the flute in years, and playing was very much like discovering a hidden room, a bonus of space and resources I'd long forgotten. I was exercising a part of my brain left neglected for years. I was playing an instrument and listening, stimulating synapses and flipping old cobweb-covered switches.
The experience immediately brought to mind the excitement of discovering that hidden space in the old house.
This morning, Orion and I got to school extra early and once again I found myself doing something I haven't done in ages---playing basketball. The sensation of my fingers on the dry pebble skin of the ball on a chilly morning---how many files of that are in my brain---two thousand? twenty-thousand? Back to Alan Berliner and his rooms with thousands of reference photographs and sounds, filed neatly away---it's all in there. The muscle memory immediately awakened with hardly a yawn, so that the ball felt natural and easy under my hands, the arc of the shot was calculated subconsciously in my brain, the satisfaction of the swish of the net both familiar and refreshing. The surprised delight on Orion's face was like the sun.
I feel awake, in rare fashion, for today.

I'll take it.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Light Bearer

Ages ago, reading about the most excellent Madame Curie, I was inspired to make The Light Bearer.

I put together the armature and asked Spencer to add some lights.

A lot of things happened so that I didn't get to finish her. She sat on the shelf, patiently waiting to become more of herself.

Last week I was overcome by the urge to do a painting, but knew I should finish our dear Marie.

So I decided to take her into the Mysterious Steam Punk World Poppets love to visit. Perhaps the choice was a matter of communion with Poppets.

I thought you'd like to see her and I'll be happy to answer questions about how she is made.
And yes indeed, once I finally started, she took all the hours and hours I expected, and then a few more.
They were good hours though, and I gave this bit of my life to her willingly, and she shared with me her experience of coming to be. It's a good arrangement.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Pink. Sort of.

No need to talk about the inauguration. We're all watching, waiting, hoping.

No need to talk about change. Change comes on its own, when we least expect it.

No need to talk about love. It's all been said and better.

Poppet will speak for me, as usual.

Thank goodness for Poppet, watching over us, silly humans.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

The Most Honorable Doctor Byrd. And Rain

The artist begins to catch up photography...

We like the sky.

I am learning more about Poppets than I ever imagined. Am I beginning to understand them, just a little?

Very likely, not.

I'm okay with that.

Friday, January 16, 2009

The Magnificently Mysterious Master Blue

I'm going to be making a new something for the Mr. Gaiman. He tells me that the something should be happy and wise.

Smart fellow, he is. He understands that artists need room to stretch.
Happy and wise... bigger inside than out.

In the meantime, we're making new art for February---Valentines and Astronauts. How is it that they fit?
Honestly, I'm not sure yet how. But something tells me they will. I've learned to trust that something.

And of course, there had to be a third steam punk Poppet. For every reason, but mostly because my nature seems to abhor even numbers. It's just the way I'm made, I suppose. Lisa needs her primes.

(I was reminded that 2 is also a prime, by Zac, and rightly so. He removed his comment because I answered with the voracity of one persecuted--I was actually, but certainly not by Zac! Come back---we need you on our side, catching our foibles. Silly humans.)

This thought is inspired by Syd. I added the question mark on an impulse. There are several good ones up on the forums and I'll add some new photos to play with this weekend.

On that note---have a good one. I'll be back in the studio working on new stuff, except for tomorrow evening, when we take a car full of kids up to 'the hill' to get a non light-polluted view of the night sky that we hope will astound them, awaken new interests and open discussions about 'out there.'

Also, I wanted to tell you that I just finished making a mold for some of the individual crows sculpted for this piece called "Waiting."
I gave them little Doc's, so they can stand on their own. I'll be making some available in the store in the next few days, along with some seriously cool paper doll pieces.

Have a great weekend, and as always, thanks for checking in.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

This train brakes for burnout

Stealing from Homer (the other Homer) 'all work and no play makes Lisa somethin', somethin'."

Gurtie and I watched some television today, because I'm a bit burned out and my right arm is warning me to take a break or else.

I'm actually not that good at taking breaks.

Some people who know me would claim this as an understatement of a monumental sort.

Anyway. This is mostly how Gurtie looked. I didn't do a lot better.
But my brain still works fine, and I'm seeing more and even stranger birds and figured out a kinetic bit I've been mulling over.

Alieve, and sleep and hopefully tomorrow I'll be in my apron again.

I'm hearing it's cold all about. Here, it's 40's at night and low 70's during the day.

I should be outside enjoying it. I can see the deck chairs from here. But out there, I think way too much. Break time means distraction, so I don't think. I'll let you know how that works out.

Less coffee today. more milk.

Hope your Thursday is good.

Friday, January 09, 2009


Poppet pretends to be Neil Gaiman.

The Poppet pretending to be Neil stands contemplatively--as a Poppet pretending to be Neil would---and
being a Poppet,

Early Batman comics
Dr. Who and the Daleks by David Whitaker
Journey to the West.

The original sculpted Poppet Plays Neil is offered for auction to benefit the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund.


The first five of the numbered limited edition of 100 Poppet Plays Neil can be found in the Poppet Store on Ebay. Each is meticulously hand painted by Lisa on a hand- cast, hand - finished poppet sculpture with a certificate that says so.

AND many new Poppets and other works from Strange Studios and Strange Too.

It's a new year. A new palette. Now we are making art, for sure.

As I type I hear the Snuggie commercial for the 2111th time. Does it annoy me that Snuggie makes everyone look like Poppets? Or does it amuse me? Does it matter?
Not really. It sort of annoys me because Snuggie is terribly un-cool. (though I hear, quite warm) It sort of delights me that we could all have Poppet costumes quite easily.....

I'm getting a bunch of ideas...
a dozen or so Grinchy ones and one sort of sweet. That works.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Moe, Larry...

So. It's true that the studio work has been flowing freely. That finally I'm getting back to work on long-delayed projects. That soon I'll be visiting the Mr. Gaiman to work on Strange Machines (The Neil Poppet will present himself tomorrow, I'm told.) It's also true that the American Visionary Art Museum has taken possession of the first five of the Dark Caravan kinetic Pieces---and that the reality of that exhibit has begun to well, be real.

But don't get any delusions of grandeur. I'm not. Yesterday I brushed my teeth, but not my hair, not once. All of us have had colds in turn, the house looks like the studio has taken over in some mad scientist anarchy. The studio looks like the house has taken over in some strange mad, household kind of anarchy. We are looking more and more like the crew of the Nebucadnezzar.

A mountain of laundry looms reproachfully, growing more wrinkled by the hour.

I gained a couple of holiday pounds and have been eating fruit when I want sweets, and pickles or salad when I want salty. How that's working is like this---I want some CHEESE! sheesh

So. Life is life and art is art and still sometimes it's impossible to separate them.

So...why would I?

Hope you're having a good night and will have a good tomorrow.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

New Year, New Palette, New Universe and a Few Old Souls

Poppet has been a-wandering.
To places elsewhere and elsewhen.

Things are different in other places.

Little Red Poppet is different here, and known as The Extraordinary Doctor Poppet.

A bit of a bend in the light here. A bit of a hard edge. A place of copper, and clouds and crows, steam powered animals and singing brains.

And here, Poppets are more than watchers. Poppets are engineers. Mad engineers.

Poppet met up with Rebecca's Mad Gastronomer , and a couple of Strange Old Birds.

And some old friends too.

This is a Strange place indeed. Poppet promises to send lots of photos. I promise to share them with you.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Happy New Year

Hey guys,

Happy New Year, wherever you are, whatever you're doing. We roasted some marshmallows with the kids, shot off some fireworks, had some shots and Irish cream.
New Year. New palette. New vision.

Nine is a favorite of mine. Not a prime, no, but sweet in its own way.


Here we go happy you're going with me.