Tuesday, October 13, 2015

The Bad, The Good, The In Between

The Bad:

  • Today I woke up and vomited, but I still managed to hold down a cup of coffee and drag my queasy self in to teach my class.  I hope I wasn't contagious.
  • My dog needs an operation I can't afford. At least it's not that urgent, so maybe next month.

  • Brought my 2 youngest kids to a "real" haunted house since they're now old enough. It was a disaster. Naomi dropped her phone in a corn maze in a panicked attempt to outrun the "zombies". I went wandering back to find it, and started asking people if they'd seen it. Had a chat with a "zombie" which killed the scary effect, then Naomi found it. We continued on through the maze and a monster/zombie jumped at Mike and Naomi. Naomi pushed towards Mike and they both fell over a log. Mike injured his arm. We spent the rest of the evening getting checked by a medic and waiting for a refund.

The Good:

Chloe and her Aunt Kristin
  • Chloe returned home from an excellent visit to Seattle to see her Aunt Kristin and Uncle Duncan.
Chloe at the Space Needle
  • She also landed a huge role in her schools fall play!

  • I dropped off my duplicate bird at his new home (the other one is still on display at the gallery).

  • The same client has commissioned me to make another version of this sculpture which sold out of my show.
  • Phoebe and her theatre group put on an amazing improv show last week that had us all rolling in the aisles!

The In Between:

  • My show comes down at the end of next weekend, so I have to coordinate getting art to buyers and repairing any damages to the work from being on display.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

A weekend of Lovecraft in Portland

    Friday morning after dropping the kids at school Mike and I flew out of Phoenix and headed to Portland for the H.P. Lovecraft festival. It's been 5 years since I flew anywhere so it was all a bit disorienting. Coach has clearly lost another inch and a half of leg room (inches that I didn't think were there to eliminate). Also it was strange to sit at our gate for Salt Lake City, when the gate next to us was leaving for Paris, (not sure when they put domestic flights in the same branch of the airport as international flights). This is a photo from the window as we flew over Utah.

Flying over Mount Hood.

Arriving in Portland was fantastic. When we left Phoenix it was over 100ºF and the weather in Oregon was well like autumn. This was the fountain by our hotel.

Tree People sculpture near our hotel.

Mike in the city.

We headed straight over to the Hollywood theater for the festival, Mike was on a panel first thing.

This guy was perched in the lobby.

 Us in the lobby.

Chtulu lurked in the corner during the panel.

The next day was the Pickman's Apprentice Art Contest.

The art challenge was to draw the deep ones at a science fair.

John Carlucci drawing during the contest. 90 minutes later they were all done

John Carlucci's finished drawing.

Karen Hudson's finished art.

And this is Mike's finished art. During the festival attendees were invited to bid on them and vote for the best one. We just heard that Mike won!

   The festival was full of odd moments like when the HP Lovecraft impersonator began a strange exchange with the HP Lovecraft puppet. Overall we had a great time and Sunday afternoon we were back in airports. First we flew to Seattle (which was annoying being it was in the opposite direction). Then we waited around in Seattle for a LONG TIME! 

This was an incredible art exhibit near our gate.

More images from the exhibit.

One more crazy, shaky flight and we were back in Phoenix (which, by the way is an amazing light show coming in at night by plane).

Anyway this morning we were back at the airport. Chloe flew off to Seattle to spend her fall break with my brother Duncan and my sister-in-law Kristin... She just landed.

Monday, September 28, 2015

The Eclipse of the Super Blood Moon

Last night we rounded up the kids (which only seems to get more and more challenging as they get older, even though they now don't need help with shoes, don't need to even wear jackets here and have no particular reason for taking forever!) we also brought Oscar, and headed away from the city lights out to Goodyear to watch the eclipse.

We headed out to the Estrella Star Tower.

The Star Tower is is 50 feet high and excellent for sky viewing. It's surrounded by a park and some waterfalls and is really quite nice. It also sparkles when the sun sets.

This is a glowing sign on the side of the building. The place was full of people last night.

They aren't in this photo though. In fact our photos are kind of lame.

Night photos are just not so great with our camera.

This is the view from the top of the tower.

So our pictures of the eclipse are not so great.

©Kelly Clark Moncure
But, my good friend Kelly Clark Moncure in San Diego captured some amazing images. Of course she's a professional photographer and an awesome one!

After standing for an hour on the stone tower we all felt pretty hot and hungry. (Yes, it's still pretty hot after night fall) We headed over to a pizza shop and watched it from there. Over all though it was pretty amazing though.

Last week Phoebe made this incredible cheesecake for Mike's birthday. It was quite delicious. 

I managed to finish my second glow worm this week for The Grand Ave. Festival.

Anyway this is his head.

He's now waiting for the festival in our closet.

I've also made great progress with the second bird I'm building.

Here's his body in progress.

In other news the show Mike is in at the Blue Wave Gallery was reviewed in Art Scope Magazine. They called him a "SciFi Michelanglo"!

Anyway last week was the first day of class at the Montessori school pre-k. One little boy was helping me tape his art work into the frame. I said to him "You're very good at this, do you help your Mommy wrap presents at Christmas or Hannukah?"
 "What's Monica?"
"It's a holiday like Christmas, where you wrap presents and give them to family." Then he got really quiet, but for the rest of the day he called me Miss Monica.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

My rainbow knee and an art update

Well, my knee is no longer swollen from last week's tumble, but it might make good reference for someone's Halloween make-up.  

head close-up
I've been pretty busy this week with work in the studio. My second Glow Worm is coming along for the Grand Avenue Festival....

He's getting there, but he still needs his legs before I can start painting. I've also begun work painting the chair for my commission....

As you can see the chair for the new bird is a different style than the original one from my show, it's also heavier and hurt like crazy when I dropped it on my feet (I have got to stop hurting myself!)

"An Intelligent Breed" from my show "Books of Whimsy" at the Central Gallery

Anyway this weekend Chloe went to Anaheim with her friend to visit Disneyland (lucky kid), so she's gone for a few days. Yesterday was the last day in the season to use our Big Surf water park tickets, so we sent Phoebe and Naomi and a friend. They were filming a movie while they were there. They managed to get some water bottles from the catering table and had a great time watching the film crew shoot the movie.

Mike has a new exhibit up in Amesbury, MA at the Blue Wave Fine Art Gallery, for anyone in the area, stop on by!!

Also I have some new paintings up for sale in my Etsy store....

And Scorpio.

Hope everyone's enjoying their weekend!

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Leaving Texas

 Our last night in our rented house was most fortunately uneventful. The only odd moment happened in the middle of the night, when I woke up and realized all the lights were on. I limped about on my gimp knee and shut them off. By morning when I woke up much of the swelling was down on my knee, so I got to packing.  I was too sore to help Mike load the car, but I did manage to clean up, pack some and wake our kids (which is no small task). We left town and headed west for our long drive home.
Chloe, Phoebe and Oscar in New Mexico

 There are travel centers and rest areas when you drive around in the west that embrace a theme. Usually it's dinosaurs or Indian Teepees. Our first stop in New Mexico had an old west theme.

  The whole place was like a movie set.

  Of course inside they sold the usual indian pottery, pieces of petrified wood and scorpion keychains sealed in plastic. The drive was long and dull, but early on in our trip we started seeing signs for The Thing....

  Seriously, they advertised their rest stop 200 miles down the road in New Mexico (the stop is in Arizona).  So we stopped, because at this point they'd been advertising to us all the way there and now on the way home.
  It cost a dollar to go to The Thing "museum"....

 We followed a footprint trail into a colorfully painted barn, that was pretty hot, and dusty. Inside were all these displays. Here you can see there's an old car.

A display of strange doll figures.

Some old fashioned phones.

A bizarre display that demonstrates torture devices.

Naomi studying some of the odd looking wood sculptures.

These strange wood sculptures were literally everywhere. On many shelves and hanging from the ceiling!

This was also in the "museum". As we followed the footprints we began to get impatient. What is this thing? Is it a rock? Where is it? Finally we turned a corner and faced this banner....

It was in the glass case in front of the sign.

So here it is.... The Thing.

They called it "The Mystery of the Desert"

 Anyway it was hard to photograph, but it's some kind of mummy. My kids were convinced it's the fake kind of mummy, but I don't know.  It wasn't the greatest museum, but it sure was nice to get out of the car! After this we didn't really drive that long before we just had to get out of the car again.

The sign said we were in Texas Canyon (which was for some reason in Arizona).

The canyon was surrounded by boulder encrusted mountains.

Chloe and Phoebe were nice enough to pose for the camera

Me leaning on the girls with my swollen knee.

A rather nice picture of Mike and I for once. :)

From here it was back to the car! We finally stumbled through our door in Phoenix by evening (or maybe it was just me who was doing the stumbling). Oh well, vacation's over...Back to real life!

"People are willing to take these extraordinary chances to become writers, musicians, or painters, and because of them, we have a culture. If this ever stops, our culture will die, because most of our culture, in fact, has been created by people that got paid nothing for it--people like Edgar Allan Poe, Vincent Van Gogh or Mozart."-Kurt Vonnegut


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