Happy Friday everyone,
A bit of a varied collection this week:
First, the coupon code OCTOBER is still effective on my Etsy store though the lowered pricing has ended.
We have been trying to finish projects around the house this week and next so I have one of those to show.
It is a cat tree built into the corner using a favorite branch of a couple of the cats. There is a small red shelf midway up for them to play on. I left short branches for them to grab and hang from since they love that.
Also there are several drawings from my notebook. These are pencil.
Jewelry and furniture are the major pieces in process this week. I also have a 5 painting set in a single wood frame I am working on, and a larger canvas acrylic I started. Painting and mosaic have been the major focus this week.
My first wearable art original painting pendant is now finished and posted.
Initially, I began 2 oil paintings on canvas to use for this project, but the humidity recently has prevented my first layer from drying for over a week and I cannot proceed on those yet. So, I did an acrylic. Big Bend National Park is a favorite place for my husband and I; the image I painted is a sunset there. I love the colors in the sky and desert there.
Mosaic work was on the wormy wood desk I started last weekend. I laid the tile, though it is not grouted yet. I also decided to cut a piece of heavy tempered glass to cover the top when complete and that will be framed in.
The painting series is a 5 part set sunrise to evening, each of a different tree around Texas. I have finished the sunrise and started another. I also have the frame and matting ready for the 5 postcard size paintings in acrylic.
Though I am still working on what day each week I will post, or if I want to specify that, I have been working on a couple of new projects that will be available in my Etsy store when I am finished. I enjoy working with raw wood and discarded wood to create furniture. I love the back-and-forth development of design and creation as you go through the wood to find the right pieces then update or redo the design to work with your primary pieces then the other parts as you find and prepare them. I began this type of work years ago, my mother had several of my pieces that I had offers for but designed for her.
Currently, I am working on a Wormy Wood Laptop Desk or end table with shelf and mosaic tile, and on another one that will either be a coffee table or another small desk, I have not chosen all of the wood yet and am still developing that one.
The base piece of wood has perfect branching for a drink shelf and for a paper shelf.
the base for the tile is also a reclaimed piece, but from a remodel job not raw wood.
The other piece I am working on is not a pedestal style and has smaller legs as you see above. I am cleaning the wood and prepping it by hand. I use as many old, often antique, hand tools as I can because I not only enjoy them, I respect the tools and the quality of work.
Working all day and then coming home to do stuff here before I can start my project makes working on painting a tad difficult to finish in one day. Given that I must be up at 4 am, I am going to stop this project for a part two, to be continued tomorrow. I am posting the work as it stands now. I finished the drawing, if I had considered, I would have done more detail in pencil and made it 2 separate projects. Live and learn today, I shall remember next time. Another point is that I really need to find the rest of my brushes before I can continue the details and repair what the wrong brushes blurred.
This is done in Acrylic only because I forgot to prep the canvas before drawing. I am also considering how to make oil one day projects, because I do not like the wet on wet technique. When completed, this will be a 2 aspect piece. It is a Steampunk cat corner and a Steampunk art display with Alice influence. I find Alice and Dr. Who both go remarkably well in Steampunk design, a fortuitous discovery for a Whovian. I am fascinated to see what other subjects and themes go well in the Steampunk genre.
Today I also realized that although I am fine with them on the computer and in physical art, I actually hate drawing many basic gears. I love them in art though. I am testing to see the ones I actually like to draw, and began to see differences.
The colors obviously will be different as layers go on, but you can see I went with a fairly basic color scheme, there will be some obvious touches like purple on the hat and red in the cards. Wood floor and details also. I do not have metallic paint so am working on the gears. Victorian aesthetic is great, the lines are excellent, but I like Edwardian better because there is a better color sense to the actual period design. Too many colors at a time in Victorian, although most Steampunk design does seem to lessen that. Also, too many patterns for my taste. It is part of the overdone feel but for me detracts from the design. I prefer use of luxurious materials, and excess detail or functions to excess colors and patterns. Somewhere in there is a line in Steampunk, but as I have previously discussed, that depends on the sub-genre of Steampunk. I find myself working in several of the sub-genre as I go. I like different tones for different things and days.
This desk was a remarkable pain, GIMP crashed 5 times and my file was lost each time. Working on this version, I saved steps and am going to upload them as I talk also. I began with a sketch as I usually do of a steampunk desk with places for cats to play and sleep. The enclosed area is designed to open for them or storage as needed. The following is the original sketch I worked from.
I have Photoshop installed but no plugins and having never used it, I was to tired to use it instead of GIMP…GIMP was not friendly.I began the color stages with simple materials.The brass desk was too bare so I began to work. This is where things went bad. I did 5 versions beyond this, each entirely different, and I was each time unable to recreate what I had done. I had separated floor and wall, redrawn the entire sketch in GIMP with the trackball and was finishing up when I lost my first one. The following was my next step that survived. As you can see, I am patterning the desk and attempting to add shadows and depth. This was my third one that survived but my 4th design. After the next crash, I quickly did another and decided the program was shutting down, I was too tired to focus and the day is over.I like the idea and the base concept. I really liked my first and third pieces today, and am honestly too tired to judge the final one that I began the post with. I did leave a little Alice influence in with the clock and red carpeting but might add more if I did another version…not sure.
I may go in sometime tomorrow and add captions to the images, but I need sleep.
Today at work I was working with the dogs (I’m an assistant trainer at a pet resort, and I take care of the guests as requested) and considering the difference between varies breeds, categories, and pet types. I have cats personally and don’t really want dogs, but I enjoy working with them. It is interesting the things you can consistently expect from various types of dogs. Some examples I thought of: All retrievers have shared traits, and labs have some that most other retrievers may not have. One thing retrievers do constantly, many breeds don’t, is eat dirt and rocks. All bulldogs have some similarities and I really blame people for the miss-categorization of their personalities. I find them great to work with, they are fun to train. Their personality tendencies, mix of intelligence and plain denseness, loyalty pushing overprotective zeal, and their strength make a nice do but one you have to watch their triggers and know what they react to. That is a key with all breads though – what do they react to without thought. You can see in their eye the moment the brain kicks back in after a reaction. It is unfair to punish them for a reaction to something they should not have been exposed to, it seems to me.
Anyway, this is all very unrelated to my piece…actually it’s not really. I drew, in pencil, a cat climbing thing. I am planning on taking a wall or two and the tops of a few others in our house and making them a cat place. This stemmed from that idea, but is only a beginning. I had a whole other section for the piece but really don’t have time today. Maybe when I do a computer version, I’ll add a couple sections. I should also mention that I am slowly making the house over in a steampunk Alice general concept inspired by the video game Alice. As you can see in this piece, it is often subtle, though the entire kitchen/ dining area is dark red. I build furniture when I have a place to work and like to design pieces whether I make them or not – they inspire me when I do start to build. My actual pieces tend to develop rather organically as I build and the plan I so painstakingly drew is left behind as a lovely fiction. Mother always said I saw the world from a different perspective than everyone else, thus why my drawings are always at odd perspectives not used by others, often impossible ones to actually view the object or scene from in life.