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Showing posts from October, 2007

Element #53

Element 53 #53/100
I believe this is a heating element. One of the finds from last week. The center ring is from the plow rig partsI found a few weeks ago. I personally love this one, something about the texture and colors on heat element coupled with the embedded steel coil things. (I wish I knew what things were called but I don't), just feels very satisfying visually.

dump find

I went to the dump today, I like to go to the little shed and drop off things for others as well as get some new used clothes and look for puzzles. Today I found a 1500 piece Pieter Bruegel Puzzle in perfect shape! The strange and fascinating thing about this is, someone has numbered the back of every piece. I want to put this together just to see the back side all numbered. There is also a printout of the puzzle telling what all 118 proverbs contained in the painting mean. Just never know what one will find out there!

blowing a fuse

I finally got up the courage to use the table saw and instead, it blew a fuse. Of course all of the other outlets in the garage work after re-tripping everything but not the one closest to where all my power tools plug in. So I got an extension cord out and blew that fuse. Re tripped that one and it works but not the one I need. Wonder why when the welder dude turned it on and showed me how to cut things it was fine? It is one of those days I feel like I will never have anything ever just work normally. This is how it goes, this is life...everything works just enough to keep me from exploding. So I have a table saw that doesn't work without blowing fuses. A huge radial arm saw that has nowhere to sit and needs adjusted but no clue how to do that. A drill press that is always getting stuck and having the chunk where the drill bit attaches fall out when I'm drilling something. A wobbly scroll saw. A sparky skil saw. A stereo that has speakers that tune in and out and drives me i…

more of the finds (gifts)

Today was much more enjoyable. Even with little to no sleep and all that worry. Writing about worrying made me realize I at least do something instead of just worry. I get off my ass, I break up the paralyzing thoughts and move on. Sometimes worry serves me well, when I just let the thought pass, feel some concern and then do what I can. Worry probably isn't even a good word to use. None-the-less, I have everything cleaned and tucked into it's new box, on a shelf, in it's new place along all my other scrap. I get initially freaked only because this isn't my house and it always feels like I have just made another bet in some life or death card game. Ultimately I die but in the meantime I would like to win a hand or two just once.

I won big time this week I guess. Look at the book the guy gave me! This will be invaluable even if I don't get it all. It has plenty of pictures and that works for me. Below are some cool rusty rings, also gotten that day. These are equall…


I have always been a worrier. I've given up trying to figure out where that came from. One of my earliest memories of worry is of being no more than five years old, if that, and becoming overly worried about going blind. I don't know if I had just seen a Helen Keller movie or what, but I was sick with worry. I was crying and my dad asked me what was wrong and after much coaxing on his part I ran to his lap, shaking I could barely spit it out as I sobbed that I was afraid I was going to go blind one day. He laughed out of stunned disbelief and relief I guess that it wasn't something more serious. I was inconsolable though.

My worrying grew as did I. I was sick a lot as a kid, always getting tonsillitis, mumps, chickenpox, strep throat, plagued with ear problems, headaches....on and on. Being highly energetic and sick a lot was a bad mix. While in bed, while on the sofa sipping 7up and eating crackers with cheese to sooth a fluish gut I would fixate and worry about the worst.…

the goods

What took me and Tod three + hours to get yesterday took twice as long for me to go through and clean. I vacuumed all the wood, washed every piece of scrap save for three boxes that I will do tomorrow. A seven hour day unloading and cleaning all my new materials. It's a good ritual: getting the goods, bathing them, holding them and getting a feel for their bulk, bendability, mountability. Somewhere in that small part of my functioning brain I will file this away and when the time is right pick it to use in an assemblage.

I also got a box of puzzles from a friend of my sisters'. She mailed a big box of beautiful puzzles last year, unexpectedly had another load for me.

There are just a few more rounds of going to get things. The person that let me have all this stuff has another place for me to get some interesting things if they are the kind of materials I think I could use. And believe it or not, I might try to get one more scrap yard trip in before winter. I've got 48 mor…

artist in a candy store

I don't have pictures right now, but tomorrow when I unload the dumpster with tod (the vw bus) I will snap a few. What is there to unload? A van full of stuff that someone gave to me to use for art. How cool is that????????????????

Today we went out of town to pick up many supplies from someone who visited that coop gallery I was in this summer. He and his wife saw my art and took my business card, found my blog and happened to have materials that a business no longer could use. Unbelievable! I have been putting off going to the lumber yard ALL SUMMER LONG. Not wanting to spend the money on luanne, strapping, MDF, and other things I don't even know what I need, and today I got bunches of it. I have to say, there is a double delight in knowing it isn't brand spanking new, it has been sitting around for god knows how long. I can't stand new. New hardware, new tools, new anything. And today was filled with hidden treasure and wonderful mixed media 'canvases'. This …

Asian Flair #52/100

Asian Flair #52/100

This is a chunky mottled gorgeous RR Plate. I felt like it had a kinship with something ancient and originally was attracted to the spotted leopardness of the plate. In my search for matching media, be it color texture or whatever, I came upon some jute that matched it perfectly. After a few days of looking at different round things to place in the center I got hit with inspiration for something Asian. These characters stand for: happiness, peace, tranquility, grace, prosperity, aspiration, constancy and harmony. Whomever owns this clock will be blessed with all.

nature photography

For your viewing entertainment this is a picture I took my first winter here a few years ago. There is a beach in Burlington along Lake Champlain that has some huge rocks and granite just sitting around. The snow had just begun falling, thick large wet flakes, darkness coming fast and I was giddy with excitement at the way the snow was leaving perfectly round circles on the stones. When I saw this rock I instantly thought of the title before even seeing the picture, "The Crying Indian". After all this time I still love this picture.

I got some good shots and spent every last drop of daylight and camera battery juice on them. I used to have all of my nature pictures on my website but over time have found that no one wants to buy my photographs as stand alone art. A few friends have, but everyone else buys the Mixed Media Assemblages. I just have my Industrial Photography on the website now and will probably remove that too, at least all the buying info. I've weeded a lot …

Clock #50 & #51

#50/100, Erosion
A few more clocks finally finished! Just got my next batch back from the welder, need to order more clocks and I'm good to go another 15 clocks. The clock below has probably been the most challenging one I've ever done, it's the heaviest too. I wonder should I tout these as possibly weapons? Hit an unsuspecting burglar on the head with one of these and burglar be gone.

#51, On the Grid

friend, mentor, muse

The post below I wrote that I was forever changed by the relationship with the guy I did the first pencil drawing of. Not in as many good ways as I would have hoped. The one thing that happened upon meeting him and being with him was I started drawing with a calligraphy pen and using pastel chalk to liven it up. I made my first large piece for him a few months after being with him and after having it up on the wall for awhile he rolled it up and put it in the closet. ROLLED IT UP, THICK WITH PASTEL CHALK. That sort of sums up the on and off again seven years. I must have had a thick skull. He didn't want his kids messing it up but still, I thought it extremely careless. I ended up going there when he was on vacation and taking it back. He didn't even know it. I later salvaged it and spent well over $300 to have it properly mounted and framed. (that was the precursor I'm sure to my mixed media works when I later actually started making art for real) I hated spending that m…


When I spent winter in MN a few years ago, again, I was in a one bedroom apartment with nothing. I did find a love seat on the side of a road in a wealthy neighborhood and found someone to help me drag it home. I had a tiny radio and a borrowed table and chair. That's it. I slept on my camping pad with sleeping bag/blankets. The six or seven months I was there I ran around the lakes all winter long for exercise, I worked on painting tiles and coffee mugs, and read scads of library books. The above pink 'painting' if you can call it that was the first thing I tried to paint. I ended up mailing it to my friend in Arizona because I didn't want to throw it away but didn't want to drag it around with me either when I hit the road again. I wish I had it now, but I did give it to her. She actually likes it and has it up on her walls.

I then bought a bunch of canvas linen and tried painting on that instead of hard little canvases. I kept this abstract one because it could b…

Art Gallery Relationships

I went to a newish art gallery the other day to see if they wanted to have my clocks there. It is a newish place and more of a tourist shoppe gallery than what I would consider a real gallery. I.E. no art openings take place here and there are counters and nick knacks, albeit nicely done and not too kitschy. I told the lady I was an artist and wanted to check the place out, see if I thought my work was appropriate and she said yes, do have a look around.

It is a faux pas for sure to go into a gallery and do that, at least that is what gets pounded into your head, but some places feel easy and you know it is okay to just put it on the table. I liked some of the art but the woman seemed removed. I dunno, maybe I'm just paranoid, I wasn't looking my best that day and as is my want when I'm making a dash to the printer and hardware store I don't dress nicely. I told her about my website so she could check the work out, she asked me to write that info down and wanted to know…

#49 Oktan

Finished this piece in the wee hours. The last three days have been me editing photos, going back and forth to printer dudes, and banging my head against my clocks in progress. This piece feels great, I love the colors, Tod thinks it looks and feels very Asian which I find curious. He found the 'object' (fuel cover) and assumed I would use the other side as it was a blank canvas, I found this side irresistible. He got this last year when he went to MA, found it in an auto scrap yard.
I have a few more clocks been working on all week....I'm getting pickier and pickier about the color and design, and oddly I find it freeing to think I have a design only to tear it up over and peeling back the layers until the nugget is revealed.
I am still believe it or not, dealing with the whole back up thing. I thought I got the right program, as it was called 'shadow' but it didn't clone the image of my hard drive. Funny how many computer forums never answer my qu…


Went to the grocery store in Morrisville and noticed signs for free stuff/moving sale popping up all around a house. Looks like another farmer packing up and retiring to Florida. The sale had been going on for five days and now it was all free stuff. I saw these things and instantly thought table sculpture stands some day. The guy mumbled something about 'rings' and went and got me a horse shoe too. All of those silver rings on the right were on the pieces and came off easily. No clue what these things are but they are beautiful and another unique find for my collection of baubles. They are washed and drying, soon to be stuffed in the basement. *someone in the know emailed me and said that those things go on the bottom of a plow rig, the rings adjust the height otherwise the plow would dig in too much. thanks for the info!

back it up

I've come to depend on my computer for my livelihood. Who doesn't right? I left my computer in storage while travelling around and when I got that apartment in Waterbury I had my friend ship it, I knew it would be a long winter stuck in a studio apartment and by god I was going to have some form of contact with the world.

The computer was a Dell desktop; I had only been using computers for two years and was terrified of having problems. Prior to leaving Arizona I began obsessing about them and how they work and reading all I could, even revived the old crappy computer someone gave me by installing a heat sink fan. whoohoo! At the time it felt like performing surgery. But hard drives and reformatting things seemed daunting. Sure enough, it didn't take long to get a virus and a few trojans (I had let my virus program expire and had yet to learn about AVG, Sygate and various other spy ware freeware) and I spent more time trying to deal with all of that than being online havin…


I'm not sure I am so easy to live with. Tod is my roommate. We share a bedroom. We share a small apartment in the basement of the home we care take for. Up until he started driving a cab this Spring, we both were here 24/7. For almost three years. Day in and Day out. Lately I have been moaning about wanting to be alone. Wanting my own place, space. The fantasy would be to have a space big enough that we could each have our own bedroom, our own office or place to hang out. It's not so much I want to live by myself as much as I need more space for me.

We are a strange pair. I met Tod when I was still homeless. I had been camping in the Green Mountains and decided I liked it here. I met some people who owned a pottery school and when they saw my drawings and tiles I had painted in MN the year prior, they insisted I stay. (ironically they are the place that last week I noticed a 'for lease' sign up and thought wow I could rent this and have my own studio/gallery!) They let …

Sunday Scribblings: #80 First Job, Worst Job, Dream Job

I haven't written a Sunday Scribblings in awhile, so here it goes:

My first job was a paper route. I was thrilled to be delivering newspapers, I had a large route and it took quite awhile on my bike to get them all delivered. In the winter I believe I pulled them on a sled, it took hours but the tips were great then. I will never forget a house I had to deliver to, it was the furthest point from my delivery start. Raymond. Raymond was one of the fattest little boys I've ever seen. I must have been in 5th grade and he was either a year younger or older, either way he was the meanest ugliest kid I'd ever seen. He was out of my school district so in real life I never had to deal with him. But every day after school I would dread having to ride past his house. Him and his posse would chase me on their bikes and the boys would all scream 'kill her Raymond, kill her!' I was terrorized to say the least. It was bad enough that a few houses before his I had to deal with the …

#47/100 Two Coils

It feels damn good to be making clocks again! This is #47/100, the fifth clock I've made recently. I have splurged and given the welder fourteen more plates to put back brackets on, and I still have four blank ones here at the house to work on in the meantime. It usually takes me two to five days to come up with an idea and put it together. Lots of cutting, buffing, painting, varnishing and drying of things. If I use adhesives I always clamp the thing being mounted for 12-24 hr. I love it when they are done and I take pictures, put a battery in and 'test' it on the wall.

Right now I still have 'Painted' up, I haven't even tested the other four clocks yet because this one is probably my favorite at the moment. But this is a close second. Originally I was going to put the coil as a ring on its side, making a circle. It looked cool from the side but ultimately the surface needed more so I took a deep breath and cut it. (I really do have problems when it comes to m…


Just because I feel like I write too much and don't have enough pictures, here is another drawing I did a few years ago. I like this one, I call it 'Another Woman'.

I still can't decide what to do with my drawings. Frankly I think they are a little boring as black and white. I like pen and ink, (isn't that redundant? why do they call it that) I've tried some colored pencils and that doesn't flow and feel good. Some of my abstract pen and inks have thick pastel chalk livening things up, those are in storage in Arizona.

Speaking of which, after yesterday's job debacle (two for two this year) I called my friend in Arizona and asked if she wanted to buy everything in my storage closet to do as she pleased. I have that big red round chair in storage as well as the best of the best of what I owned and kept in a 5 x 10 storage unit. I'm starting to feel I will never get back there let alone unload my stuff someday in my own place so it's time. I will ne…

twisted relief

An hour and a half and a headache later, I leave the interview knowing I will not be the one. The first ten minutes I knew. I sat there listening and observing the person in me that moves around and does things while sitting perfectly still and looking normal...I observed that person standing up and announcing there is no way I can do this and leaving. Instead I sit and pretend and listen to the other voice that says just give it a chance ~ sit and listen and find out more.

I wanted to like this person and this job but I am not up for giving a three year commitment to helping them with the tasks they have at hand. I am also a different creature, this person is very serious. Too serious for me. And there is much seriousness in the job, much documentation of a lifetime of stuff and frankly that just isn't something I can stand to think about doing. Nor can I imagine or fathom celebrating Christmas for as long as this person does...I would be the poor sod wrapping presents the next fe…


Today is the 2nd interview for the personal assistant job. I have mixed feelings about this. No amount of confidence is going to pay my bills. Even if it did, depending on the day I would go hungry if that were the case. I read my friend's blogs and notice most, not all, but most people have day jobs and they would much rather be doing what they want instead. Finding how to do that seems to be the biggest conundrum of them all.

When I quit working for myself in 2003 I had saved about 38K, the most I ever had in my life. As I drove off into the desert sun with my maps and gear I felt nervous mostly about money. Camping could be free or cheap if done right but winter would be a time of concrete living. Gas, food and bills cost me about 1,000 a month. Money wasn't going to last long if I wasn't careful. The apartment I rented in MN was $650 plus utilities. I ended up working, again, as a massage therapist for five months, just enough to pay bills and save a little for when I l…


Painted #44/100 Finished a clock last night, I found this paint can lid on the RR Tracks in Morrisville, VT. I love that I found it there, it was meant to be part of the Limited Ed. RR Clock Series!

drill bit delight

WHO KNEW? not me. No one ever told me that there was such a thing as a pilot drill bit. In fact, when my old bit was getting dull and I bought a new one to drill through my RR Plates I bought the one on the right without even knowing it was different. Notice the bit on the right sticks out more in the middle. It has changed my life! I used to have to put in a small bit to make a start hole in the plate, constantly switching bits to get the holes drilled, some of the RR Plates are ungodly thick and seemingly undrillable. Now I use one bit and it goes through like a knife in warm butter.


Monday morning awoke to the sound of rain, as fog stretched thin before it dissolved. It is like
Christmas morning here, I worked on some RR Clocks last night and today I get to run in there to unleash one from the clamps I used to mount something onto it. I'm out of practice working on the clocks, I spent most of the day working on ideas and as is the case, I end up with four or five laid out as ideas pile up. I realize I need a mad dash to the scrap yard before it disappears under copious amounts of snow. There is a sense of last minute scrambling for materials and photographs before it's too cold to be out there.

One of my mini nightmares this fall was the realization that all of my RAW photographs that I took are not completely in focus. Up to this point I was taking most of my pictures in large jpeg format but now that I am printing larger pictures I need larger files. I took some TIFFS but last year I started taking RAWS. I would always have a copy made on the camera at t…


I'm glad I went to the opening last night. I enjoyed seeing all the new art and was relieved that my puzzle sculpture looked good in the show. I talked to a few people about it and while it is playful and not some substantial serious work compared to most of the art in there, at least people got it and commented on how creative it is. I wish it would have been placed somewhere else, sometimes I get locked into having my work all bunched together in a tight little corner, it frustrates me but I know that wall real estate is expensive and I'm glad to have a plot of wall.

Last night was also the first time I got it about my art. After having seen it the other night in Burlington in a really beautiful industrial building, surrounded by lovely brick and gold/dark blue walls, I know my work is worthy of being shown anywhere. I finally feel like I have just as much right as anyone else exhibiting my work. Interestingly on Friday night at the art walk, an art collector that I run into …

good night

Last night was the Art Walk in Burlington. It started at 6:30 and ended at 8:30. I almost didn't go, I imagined being there, sitting on the sofa in the clothing store, looking up at my art and feeling out of place physically (me, not my art). We showed up around 7 and I guess I missed the first 'tour'. Every half hour the Firehouse Gallery across the way had group walks and would show up to all of the nearby art walk places. I happened to miss the first one and after realizing only a few people were trickling in I rushed out to go look at art elsewhere. I missed the 2nd tour.

When I returned the girl working at the store said there was one more tour and people were coming through and looking so I knew I should stay for the last one. Tod and I sat on the sofa and watched someone trying on clothes. We looked at my art. At each other. Feeling as usual the surrealness of how every show I have done (other than the gallery in Stowe) always has an aire of bizarreness to it.

In walk…

hung up

Sunday night I was slated to go to Burlington to hang up my Mixed Media Assemblages for the First Friday Art Walk that takes place this coming Friday. I've decided to cast aside my fear of showing you all how incompetent I am and share with you how that all played out.

Let me start by sharing how my other few experiences in hanging art have gone. The first show I ever did was an Art Fair and I had a such and such sq. footage (like 5 x 12) to display. I borrowed some faux wall things to hang my work and brought a table. I didn't bring any lighting and was saved at the last minute by a worker who loaned me two clamp lights. All in all it looked fine considering the rural setting.

The next show was a huge art thing in Burlington and each artist was matched up with a business. I got a place where the owner said hang whatever you want wherever and even had a hammer for me to bang my own holes in the walls which is exactly what I did. That was easy enough.

I did that show again the nex…

The Warrior's Battle

I took my newly finished Puzzle Sculpture, The Warrior to the gallery yesterday. It may or not be in the show, depending on how it goes for them this week getting things hung and placed. What I find interesting and challenging for me is the fact that basically there are three people there that I have to please on some level. The two owners are married and then they have an assistant. On any given day one person will like, and even okay a piece but when someone else sees it they decline or need to be persuaded. I guess there is no right or wrong way to go about this process when each person comes from a totally different background in art. One person is a sculptor who works in gigantic slabs of granite. Another has 30 or 40 years painting on rice paper as a background. The other is twenty or more years younger than they with NY Gallery experience and art degrees. I think this is all probably a good thing in the end, sure it would be easier if it were just one person saying yeah or nay…