And the work continues, or maybe making small figures two is just pleasure! Anyway there is indeed more progress and more figures are nearing completion. I have two Sentinels, two completed Walkers, and another Walker under way.
I have been doing a bit artwork between walks and garden chores, I have been making small figures. But I just got to posting my recent work due to this busy time of year. Despite all the mowing, watering, weeding and more, these figures have happened in my studio. I see these as the beginning of a new series: Walkers & Sentinels.
You can probably guess which one is the prototype Sentinel, and which are the first two Walkers!
Some day soon I hope to start work on a larger “Walker”.
I decided to update an tastefully shabby earthen toned artwork: The Red Box of Beetles. It is mostly unloved, and maybe in need of some glamor and flamboyance. I think I achieved this with the addition of more color, more detailing, and the (tasteful?) use of gold metallic paint!
I have to admit that the beetles in this box are not my most lovely beetles. They are a bit ugly, with strong personalities. People may be put off or even horrified by these particular beetles. I love them, but then they are mine!
And now they have more color, more eye appeal, and a bit more charm. At least I do hope so!
Several older small Beetle People have joined my two new Beetles in the House . My two recently made tiny beetles have returned to the house, and they brought several friends. I have eleven tiny beetle people in the house, now permanently affixed to my shower wall. They seem fairly happy to be there.
Look at the first photo to see a strictly unnecessary decorative beetle track. I placed this above the niche used for shampoo and soap so it will mostly be high and dry out of the primary shower area. Eight beetles, all less than 1.5 inches, enjoy this curving branched track. I do not want the beetles to collect water and grow mildew. I won’t be cleaning tiny beetles all the time!
As of today there are three new beetles in the house. Perhaps they multiply on their own!
The three latest beetles follow a long repair track above the built-in seating bench so these will also be out of the normal shower spray area. I think these will be the final additions. The two beetles created from extra repair material have brought enough friends to the house.
Afterwards I decided to sign my work, since I am both the artist and the repair person. It seems good to give myself the credit. And I did this most properly, by using the same sculptural “clay” material I used for the repairs. In order to sign the repair I placed a single “S” at the end of the three beetle track. I formed the “S” with a handy seal designed for use with sealing wax. Remember sealing wax, anyone?
Oh no, I have beetles in the house! But this is actually a good thing. And anyway I coerced them to move to my studio. Two new beetles joined my other Beetle People.
I have been using Apoxie Fixit to repair a few fine line cracks in a Milestone Cement finish in our house bathroom. Milestone cement is a custom blend of acrylics and cement with colors, probably no longer available. It is applied in a very thin layers to provide an attractive water resistant finish.
It was used as the finish for our large walk-in shower. Years ago fine cracks appeared in lines over the breaks between sections of cement board underlayment. Possibly these should have been better prepared. Or maybe the wood blocking underneath was poorly done. Anyway some were wider than hairline and we decided that these needed to be repaired.
I found this to be finicky work that did not leave me a lot of energy for art! I had to experiment and find the right tool to open up the cracks before they could be filled. Inspired by the tradition of Kintsugi, I made no attempt to disguise the repairs as you can see in the photo.
Each time I worked I had a bit of leftover material. Of course I don’t throw away scraps if they might be useful. So I found a way to combine a tedious home repair task with a tiny bit of art! I just played with the first little scraps, but then these two tiny beetles happened along so I had beetles in the house!
Every walk is an art walk for me, for some years now, but it is wonderful to take an art walk at the beach! Here are a sampling of my photos and artistic manipulations from my most recent beach walk.
We have plenty of nearby beaches here in Port Townsend, and these are great for a low tide walk in May, and many more on into the summer. Our lovely low “minus” tides come in spring and summer, and we can explore much farther into the intertidal zone to see many more living sea creatures waiting for the sea to return.
Only a few of the photos from the first low tide walk in May: a -3.2 tide at the Indian Island County Park.
In springtime photos shine: reflecting sunlight, holding the rain, or just shining with the color of new growth. Who can resist this? And I cannot resist adding more shine. I return home to tweak, crop, adjust and I hope enhance many of my photos. Of course I am photo mad any time of year, but it is springtime now and the sunshine is so much brighter! The birdsong coaxes me out for longer walks, and there is more to see and photograph.
Above are just a few photos taken in the woods, some enhanced, others not so much. But the opportunities for shine and color are everywhere! Most of my walks are close to home, in the surrounding neighborhoods, but I find new things to catch my eye every day, on every walk. And If I venture downtown, or to the boatyard, the opportunities are boundless.
Digital alterations sometimes make those springtime photos shine more, or sometimes just distract from the original beauty. The viewer must be the judge. I am not sure about the emerald sky, but there it is. And springtime greenery can turn to violent violet purple with one of my favorite digital alterations. I spend far to long “fixing” the digital shine I want to have enhance my photos, rather than overwhelm them.
Sometimes my artworks on paper (drawings, paintings, prints) languish in my flat file drawers, while the scans of the items find homes elsewhere. Scans or photos of my work can be resized, cropped, and recombined, then printed for new uses. These can be incorporated in new collage artworks, or they can be put to more crafty uses for art.
I don’t mind at all when my art is part of a functional object; this is so much more rewarding for me than having it hidden away unseen! And I do “apply” original art directly to furniture, boxes, and more, sometimes.
I love boxes, and I have used my art to transform many containers over the years. This new box is presumably designed as a portable vanity/toiletry box, as it has a hinged mirror inside that props up nicely. It is large enough to hold a hairbrush and assorted related items. Or it could be used as a make up box, for those who use such things…
Here are a few other art boxes I have worked on and gifted away over the years. Some have practical uses, others not so much!
Other crafty uses for art include light fixtures and furniture. Here are a few samples from my household & yard furniture:
Yes, oh! Phone cameras are such a radical shift for the casual photographer. So many possible photos at every step… how can I walk fast enough to get any exercise? And how can deal with all those photos, when I take six just to make sure there are one or two in focus? Stop! Move more slowly: no, not walk more slowly, just stop walking, focus, and take only two photos! Or put that phone in your pocket and walk briskly on by a few fabulous photo opportunities!
Oh! phone cameras make it just to easy: always there a click away! Of course I really love it, yes I love taking photos as a walk around town finding amazing large or tiny scenes.