The Bus to Work
Another weekend has come and gone on the Bug project. More bits are on the way here and many bruises and scratches later we survived.
I required help this weekend that will extend through some of the week as we get ready for the arrival of my orders. First we pulled the engine and the one of the heads.
While he cut pieces of remaining floorplans out, I cleaned the head. I used kerosene for a lot of it and it works remarkably well. First you carefully scrape dirt and oils and accumulated gunk off, pick it out of holes, and check mating surfaces. Then you get the brushes to it. After that you can get to the kerosene with not too harsh scubbies and cotton balls. A razor blade is useful if you avoid mating surfaces.
The valves are rusted but not bad. I will need a valve cover and rods. As I already knew, the most work will be interior. I have to rebuild some mating surfaces for the floor pans to seal. I have a plan and what I need on the way.
The most entertaining aspect this weekend was lifting the body off the frame to get better access and view. It is remarkably easy on a bug and really helped access. Pulling the motor was easy too which is a nice change.
o…it’s coming but is slow. I have a lot of hurry up and wait since I order parts when I get paid and prep and evaluate in between.
The process of restoration always fascinates me. The stages of cleaning and evaluation that move into collection of starting needs and price lists. From there you fix parts, clean parts, replace parts, restore finishes, and test things hopefully one at a time.
What I fail at is doing one task at a time. So, in typical fashion I am restoring 2 vintage sewing machines at the same time as my car. Both are Singer, one is a treadle and one us a single stitch electric from the 40’s.
But back to why you came here…the bug is ongoing. I have stripped the interior except the headliner. The fuel tank is out. The engine is stripped and loose but not out. I have new floorplans to install but need to remove the jack points first. So there is progress both mechanical and aesthetic. Having performed extensive rust treatment inside, I still must treat the exterior of the tank. The interior is pretty clean.
I am preparing to order exhaust and probably a wiring harness so you know what the next updates will likely be.
Recently I have completed several sewing projects I am quite proud of, a digital painting I really like, some writing, and a few other things. Today however, I started a new project… restoring my 69 bug.
My sewing and art room is full of parts and I will start sanding and priming after I get stuff soaking in oil or the cleaning bath. The seats and fenders are in the shed but I have them. I need new floorplans…nite the grass under the car.
It has been a while since I restored a vehicle and I still have my job and online shop to run but this is happening as quickly as possible.
If you know me at all, you know I love cars, motorcycles, engines, and anything related. I love the feel of a powerful engine, the unique sound of an unusual engine, the special quirks of rare mechanical and the function of a well engineered machine. I love the art, the style, the engineering, the mechanics, and the the dirty details. I work on them, caress them, listen to them, admire them, and covet them. From Ducati to Norton, Bugatti to Edsel I love good design and quality work.
This past week my husband and I, who is a fellow admirer went to the Houston Fine Arts Museum to visit an exhibit of Art Deco cars. These were taken with my Fire phone, not the good camera from work.
If you have played Metal Gear Solid III you know her name is not Eve, but you never get her actual name. This painting was done based on the Abstract art in the manual that comes with the game not the actual character. My husband has played through this game to get every badge and recommended this pair of paintings. This is a stretched canvas, oil painting.
Eve is on Etsy here.
The other is of Snake:
Snake is on Etsy here.
I need to get back to posting things as I do them 🙂
In the meantime, let me share some of my more recent work over the next couple of weeks. Several of them are posted on my new Etsy store, which was one of my current projects.
The above mini painting is a 4×4 canvas acrylic based on a close up photo I took some time ago. the initial sketch on the canvas was only the barest approximation to get me started. the piece developed from there into one of my favorite of my mini paintings. I hope you enjoy it also.
Another new direction today. the female form is the basis of this piece. I have been contemplating this one for a while, I got the image off Facebook but to be honest I am unsure who she is. I will try to look into it, it was on the tattooed females page. With that foundation, I took a shot of an old Honda Superhawk engine open and clean. My husband is building one right now, so I keep seeing great things in it to work with. I used that as a beginning for the female steampunk cyborg. The background is completly changed from original.
This has been a day of ups and downs and extremes. In keeping with that, I did another supercar. a Bugatti Veyron turned Steampunk heavy on the Victorian accents.
Also, I am represented on the http://makesomething365.blogspot.com/ today!
In relation to that I did a quick review of my projects to see which ones followed the ideas in the book on the days they were suggested and which I put off or did not use.
- Day 1 was small as suggested – jewelry
- started from the idea given but strayed – GIMP
- Suggestion 3 I saved for other days – paper
- a little related in the concept – pencil and essay
- collection related – Motorcycles and books
- day 8 – I will not cut up a book
- day 17 saved the eye idea for a later series still going
- day 21 – not a love story but my husband was heavily involved in this one
- day 22 somewhat related – modular gearing shelves stack to desired shape, a bridge is an idea
- day 26 is almost opposite
- day 27 is inspired by a dream as suggested, many are
- day 28 fits but in a very personal not obvious way, all the images were from my Alma Mater or trips taken there
- day 31 is not a path, it is the first of the eye series
- 32 is almost ephemeral, it is a computer image
- 33 is pens related – drawing of eye
- day 34 working with wire does not fit that day but I use copper wire frequently
- 35 almost fits it is an essay about steampunk development
- 36 kinda fits, redid a project from another day
- day 43 I did learn new techniques but in GIMP
As promised, here is the other Passport Steampunk mod I was thinking about yesterday. This one is a c70 Passport. I began with a very simple black and white image and built up all of it. The basic form is I think a 60s model, they really haven’t changed much so I am unsure. I am trying techniques and ideas in GIMP this week to improve my skill with the program and my ability to transfer ideas to the image. I am getting faster with the program also, for things that took much longer previously I can now focus on trying things or details of the image.
This one reminds me of the really early single person cars and bullet cars. The lines really fit the period and hint at hidden things in the bike. Swooping levers and curves are so rarely seen now, it is a detail and style out of the past.
We bought a moped for me to take to work today. A Honda c70 Passport, also known as the Cub in other countries. In commemoration of that, I did a mod of a cub today. The image is actually a c50 from a Hell For Leather Magazine article. I am thinking I need to contact the Moped Army local chapter now 🙂
At any rate, I quite like the steampunk mod for this one and I have another planned with a very different panel style. I tried something new and turned the shadow into a reflective pool. Getting it to do that without messing up the motor was a challenge, but I’m fairly pleased with it.
I find cars much easier on the computer and bikes by hand or when actually working on one. The Ducati frame gives me a particular challenge in getting the texture and color right without losing the depth. that and the seats. I will have to consider a few options on my days off and try some things, maybe I can fix that. I love their frame design, it was one of the things that first drew my attention years ago, but it’s a beast in GIMP and Photoshop. Nice for drawings though. I want to paint some, but too big and detailed for a one day project, that will have to wait. I also find it interesting that most of my added gearing and linkage just blended into the design and is hardly noticeable now.
Frankly, too tired to make a judgement, but 🙂 I know it’s a bit odd, but hey, so am I.
I want to redo this and some of my others when I have a way of making good rivets that allow functioning gears and precise placement. However, I like this one using a Triumph pin my husband gave me when I had my Bonneville some years ago. The magnifying glass is free enough to be used on things if needed and focuses on the Coin. It swings a bit more than I would like, I would fix that if I redid this one with the riveting. All connections are copper, as is the back gear. The others are brass and bronze. The pin is silver. Not sure what the stone is. I also like triumph cars, so the gear on the left serves duel purposes for me. Setting the gears so they fit together and spin was a challenge lacking the rivets, they are held motionless for the picture.
Steampunk Drink Automaton
Having a lot of time to think when training dogs or walking them around the lakes, I have a lot to discuss. However, extreme lack of sleep is beginning to tell on me and I am not certain I could be truly coherent. Tomorrow will most likely be a repeat of same automaton nature of my brain. I will briefly say I was thinking of people I have known and their diets through part of the day. Both lifestyle diets and those frequently on one diet or another. a trend is apparent showing two basic approaches to diet, regardless of details. One, is the deprivation, denial, and restriction approach. The other is a fulfillment of need, desire, or an attempt of similar.
Deprivation eating restricts some portion and often most of a persons eating, often to excess. Observation says this often leads to drastic deviations from restrictions and shortage of a sort that must be corrected by other means such as drinks or vitamins. This however, is not my point. My thought was how quite unhealthy this seems; not merely from a physical standpoint but from a mental and emotional standpoint. How does this constant focus of restriction, deprivation, and avoiding the things you crave or are interested in impact your other portions of self?
Personally, I do not diet. I have eaten fairly restricted dies, such as vegetarian, at times. But for me it is not a matter of restricting my intake, it is a result of paying attention to my system, my body, my activity, my environment, and my health to know what I need and what cravings are indicating. A craving for sugar is quite specific if you have learned to pay attention to the differences. Is it ice cream, soda, sweet tea, fruit, candy, what are you craving. What is going on in your life or system that is causing this. Now you should know what you really need. For me those particular cravings usually indicate a need for potassium, calcium, C, or a couple other things. Environment and local climate alters cravings and needs.
Anyway…back to the matter at hand. I drew a steampunk drink automaton in pencil very old using motorcycle parts as a base. I then uploaded into GIMP and added color. I made a decision to leave it partially shaded to highlight the feel of the drawing and the sketch quality. I hope you enjoy. I am also uploading a slightly different version of my color work. He runs on leather tracks set in wood and brass fittings and has an extendable, bi-rotational tray arm to maintain balance of drink tray.
Hey, it’s cool to actually see improvement in a skill. I did another GIMP project today. Started with another motorcycle but after 2 discards, went with a Mini Cooper. I drive a Mini and have been wanting to do this.
I’m actually pretty pleased with this one. Still some things to work on in how to use the program and details, but I’m definitely learning.
Working on the 363 day project, the blog, and actually putting my work out public however it resolves has really made me think of my mother. I would not be doing this without her input, direction, pushing, faith, and support. I miss her, but will continue to listen to her and the words she left behind. It seems simple to say nothing will happen with my art until I really focus on it and do it or until I show it to others, but in practice that is rather like pulling teeth.
I don’t think I have mentioned, probably should add it to the about, but all work on this site is property of the artist, namely me, and is not for open distribution without credit and notification. Please do not use my work for monetary gain without both crediting and allowing the artist commission. Thank you. See the official stuff is done for now.
Today I downloaded the GIMP program. I used it a lot years ago, but am ridiculously out of practice.
I’m not actually thrilled with the results, but got a lot done in setting up GIMP and remembering how to use it. This is definitely a skill I will be working on over this year to improve. But it is a start, and I have the program ready to use now.
I have been reading 365: A Daily Creativity Journal (http://amzn.com/B00BQ1RF3W) as I mentioned yesterday. This project started from the day 2 suggestion, though not everyone would readily see that. It is for a favorite animal 🙂 we have cats and motorcycles at our house, one current restoration project is a 1967 Benelli. I wanted to do a Steampunk design for it. I’ll try again later. I may actually hand draw it, or I’ll use it as another learning day for GIMP.
There are a couple of fonts used in the image today. I don’t have the names on me but will before I use them again.
This piece took much longer than I expected, I could have done it faster by hand and probably liked it better. But, it is good practice. It has some elements I really like. Tell me what you think and what your suggestions are.