Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Yesterday's show

Art of the Red River was back with a really good show yesterday.



For the first time we had a jewelry designer on the show.  Lynda Rasco was full of interesting stories about her work.  Which you can see more of here.



 Our second guest was Felipe Echevarria, internationally collected fine artist and graphic novelist, from Loveland, Colorado.

                          
And our last minute guest, Pat Ryan of "Drive Thru Bud" turned up on the show with some crazy stories!  Listen in to Art of The Red River!



Saturday, July 27, 2013

Phoebe goes to "Clay Camp"

Each morning this week I rolled out of bed as the sun rose.  After harnessing the dog we walked around the neighborhood through the warm steam of the early morning in a daze that only comes from gradually waking while actively doing something.  Then I began to wake Phoebe for her morning journey out to the desert.


I sipped my coffee and waited for her to get ready, (usually studying the random pictures of cats on Facebook).  And then we would drive, and drive to the Desert Dragon Studio in Deer Valley.


Every day they would spend some time working on the wheel, and she'd come home with clay on her jeans, even though she was wearing a huge apron.

These are some of the little pots the kids made one morning.

The studio itself was a place to explore.

Unfinished pots sat outside in the sun.

The very hot kiln sat out back.


Pottery was literally everywhere.  Some pieces beautiful and intact and others were shattered and litter the ground.

 It created a very inspiring atmosphere.

Phoebe learned to do a raku finish on these pots, which involves setting them on fire to create a beautiful kind of glaze.

This is a fountain she sculpted.  She'll go back in a couple weeks to glaze it.


Anyway it was a great week, but camp is over now and school is fast approaching.  This week I re registered Naomi and Phoebe for school. This must be done each year here in Arizona, I'm not sure why. I've been told it has something to do with getting reliable student lists and dealing with snowbirds (people who spend winters in Arizona, but summers in other parts of the US). As someone who's moved with kids many times, I can't imagine choosing to do that year after year, but I guess some people do.

This week is about school supply lists and getting ready for August 5th- the first day of school!!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Into the great wide open....

Wednesday morning was the day we left into the great wide open desert, towards San Diego.  Yes, like thousands of other people we flocked to San Diego for the big one....  No, not the earthquake, the biggest comic con in North America.

And it was really.... Huge.  Crowded. Busy. 

When people read about comic con in San Diego they usually show photos like this.  Where you can see the floor, and I don't mean you can see the exhibit floor, I mean here in this photo you can see the carpet, and there seems to be some personal space for these different individuals.

This is the "Ice King" (well, his head) from Adventure Time.  This is what comic con is really like.  People standing shoulder to shoulder, shuffling along.  I took this photo by holding my camera way up over my head.  There is no personal space, no where to sit, no where to decompress, unless you have a booth where you can hide for awhile.
Anyway, this is a dinosaur.


This is a dinosaur in line at the cafe.

The Creature from The Black Lagoon.

And these guys from the Monster's University movie that Mike and Naomi went to see a few weeks ago, when it premiered.

Anyway, my appearances were all at the Cartoon Art Museum booth where I drew for attendees, along with some other amazingly talented artists.  Mike was running around to signings, interviews, and panels, and also drawing at the Cartoon Art Museum.

When you visit a place that you once called home it becomes a marathon of driving around trying to see everyone, if only for an hour.

The girls made extensive plans with school friends.

   ...And all of us needed to spend some time with family. Oscar came along and met everyone, he also got  an afternoon on Dog Beach. Where he managed to avoid the waves and some of the dripping wet dogs by sitting at my feet with guarded excitement.  He didn't manage to avoid the fleas and I spent much of the next day running back and forth to Petsmart, getting him a flea dip and some flea drops.

    Sunday afternoon at 3pm we headed back to Phoenix. Crossing the desert at night means your windshield fills with the tiny corpses of flying insects. This time we were peering through a very small clear spot for miles before we reached a service area where we could clean it off and plow forward to start a new collection. We arrived in the city late last night with 3 tired kids, 2 exhausted adults, and 1 happy, but itchy dog.

  This morning I rolled out of bed at 6am and drove Phoebe to clay camp in Deer Valley. It's at a real artist's ceramic studio out in the desert with a big black cat weaving his way through the half finished sculptures and broken clay pots littering the floor. Outside under the trees you can see chickens running around, kicking up dust. I hope she makes something interesting.

  

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

A journey to Cottonwood

On Sunday, the girls stepped off the bus from camp, full of exciting tales of making taffy out of marshmallows, night time antics of sneaking over to other cabins, and learning to ride a horse bareback.  Already they have big plans for next year, when they go back.

Then yesterday we loaded the kids into the car and drove them back into the mountains to meet up Mike's Uncle Ralph and family.



 It was cooler in Cottonwood, so we could sit outside at the diner.


Naomi showed Roy Peter her folding sunglasses.



Everyone got a chance to wear them.



Mike's Uncle Ralph spent part of his childhood living in Africa.  Each time we visit a tidbit of his life in Ethiopia emerges.  This time it was ants. The big red harvester ants busied themselves around the dusty ground near the diner while we ate lunch.  As we discussed their painful bite and the fire ants that make their home in Phoenix, Ralph began to tell us about the ants in Africa.  Huge pillars of nests appeared one day in their compound.  They poured boiling water into them, but it did little good.  The ants latched onto a litter of puppies they had and only one of the pups survived.  That was a darker tale, but I love to hear stories of his life abroad.

Tomorrow we leave for San Diego, to go to Comic Con of course.  I'm drawing at the Cartoon Art Museum booth on Thursday and Friday .    Mike's schedule is more elaborate....

Friday 10-11:30am Arcana Comics Booth 2415
Friday 2-3pm IDW Publishing Booth w/ Giant "IDW" sign

Saturday 12-1pm Cartoon Art Museum Booth 1930
Saturday "History of the Necronomicon" panel
8:30-9:30pm Room 8, upstairs

Sunday 12:30-1:30pm Arcana Comics Booth 2415
Sunday 2-3pm Cartoon Art Museum Booth 1930

And we'll be visiting with friends and family as well.  Anyway Happy Tuesday!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Getting out of the house....

Every few days we decide we just have to get out of here!  Weather be damned, we're going outside.... Sometimes it works out.

On Sunday, though, we were already out.  We'd just dropped Chloe and Naomi off for their buses to camp, and then decided to head over to Mesa to see the Museum of Natural History.

I know it looks lovely out in these photos, but it was 112ºF. 

The Mammoth!

Phoebe and I  with the mammoth, and my umbrella (yes, we walk around with an umbrella, for the sun.)

Hmmm.... I think it's a horse. A prehistoric horse.

It's me onscreen (and Phoebe's arm)!  In their exhibit about movies.

In the courtyard Phoebe panned for gold. She gave up quickly, though, the sun was intense!

Behind the gold panning was a dark winding mine shaft.  

For some reason it led to a collection of prison cells.


Mike inside a cell.  His hand is on one of the metal bunks.  It said that bedding was not supplied for prisoners, so they slept on the metal surface.
Back inside we found a waterfall with many dinosaurs, like this T-Rex that roared.
And this one that didn't.
Looking at stars.
I know it looks small but this is one of those giant Mayan heads.
Nearby sat a Native American yurt.

And last but not least a bear butt!

Anyway the museum was pretty cool, and the walk to the car was hot, hot hot!
 On Monday I spent the afternoon talking about writing and children's books on "Dellani's Tea Time" a talk radio show.  You can listen in here to the recorded version, and Mike has a review out about a book he's been working on all year, Zombies vs Robots from IDW. 
 Hopefully the girls are having a blast at camp right now.  Naomi's camp is all about star gazing and cooking outside (that kid loves to cook), and Chloe's learning to ride a horse (it's just about hanging on, right?) At least it's under 100º up in the mountains. :)




Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Painting and packing and my art on TV!



Next week Chloe and Naomi leave for summer camp. So this week is making lists, going shopping and trying not to panic that their camps are in Prescott, in the mountains, by that brush fire that's on the news lately. All my communications with the camps (there's 2 different ones) indicate business as usual.... so we're packing!  They are both so excited to get out of the city (because it's freakin' hot here).


This is a painting I finished 2 days ago.  My work's been selling steadily on eBay, so I keep painting!
Yesterday on TNT my art was in the background of an episode of "Perception".  They did a scene at a comic con and my work and Mike's was somewhere in that scene (I'm sure it was small and blurry, but I haven't seen it yet).

In other news my interview over at The Creative Artist's blog went live today.  In that they put up pictures and I'm totally showcased... So that's cool!  Also Mike's new logo design for Red River Radio is up and I happen to think it looks awesome. :)

"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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