25 July 2012

time to get arty



Before landing a corporate job and in turn, throwing all creative endeavors out the window, I actually did stuff other than photography. Hubster and I peddled our wares at local art fairs back in the last century (...um, millennium). This summer I had to supply a portfolio to the UW-Madison art department, so I got around to digging out some pieces to photograph them.

This is some work I created in polymer clay. The masks are done using the millefiori technique. Here's a pretty good video showing how it's done. I've got about 40 hours in to each mask.

The puppets have polymer molded heads and paws and were then attached to wooden dowels. I drilled little holes and stitched pieces together for joints, then sewed them some little cotton batting-filled outfits. Each puppet can be removed from its base for "performance".  ;o)

Did these pieces sell? No, because I still own them. I don't believe people understood the work involved here. Polymer was pretty new back then and almost everyone who looked at our stuff asked if we painted them. We ended up creating a little demo storyboard of the technique since we were asked so often. We did end up selling a lot of pins, magnets, picture frames and such. Enough small stuff to allow us to pay our booth costs. Not enough for me to turn down a corporate job.

I'm kind of excited about the prospect of losing six hours in a day because I'm hunched over some art project again. Only now, my back and eyes may think differently.

24 July 2012

just hangin' out

just hangin' out

The hubster was trimming a few trees in our backyard recently and saw his little fellow taking an afternoon nap. I got up on the ladder Hubs was using to get this shot, but it was hard to get a good angle on him without moving a branch and potentially disturbing him.

Due to our lack of rain, I haven't come across one mosquito all summer! Plenty of cicadas though. Maybe that's what our little bat is eating. He doesn't look under-nourished. It could be he's supplementing with the "meals on wings" program. *snort*

21 July 2012

rhinos, and camels, and bears. oh my.

goodnight, gracie

rhino butt


camel study

good side


p.b. no j.

Zoo images taken in June.

These were taken back when I posted about the loss of their female lion, Vilas. Since then, they've also lost their female rhino, Gracie. According to reports, she lived to a ripe old age, and they are currently looking for a new companion for George. Maybe he and Henry, the male lion, can bunk together and do some elderly, bachelor things. Watch sports, share a couple of beers, become mall walkers...

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14 July 2012

dick dale

dick dale

dick dale

dick dale

dick dale

dick dale

dick dale

The hubs and I went to see Dick Dale in concert Wednesday. He blew the doors off the dump! (Just kidding, High Noon Saloon. You are not a dump.) Dick is now 75 years old and he plays guitar as effortlessly as I butter toast. (I'm thinking of selling tickets to see that, btw.) It delights me that we are far from the oldest people in the audience at a Dick Dale concert. The fans there ranged from 14 to 80, and hubster said the smiles that swept over their faces when be began with his opening licks is a sight in itself. I hadn't noticed.

I mentioned in class earlier that day, that I was going to see him.
Student 1: "Dick Dale. Is he country?"
Me: "No. He's the king of surf guitar."
Student 2: "Oh, he's from Sponge Bob!"
Me: "God help us..."

This final capture is a scan from a film shot I took in 1995, the first time we saw him. And if you'd like to add a smile to your own face, I found this video of the song he ends his show with:

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08 July 2012

scenes from a scene

luke and cub

luke and tria

mini amp/mini alcohol

cub shotgunning it
 Cub, shotgunning a PBR

Eldest son had a birthday on Thursday. So, yesterday we had about twenty people over for a potluck. "Pot-Luke-tacular" as it was called. We supplied the brats and burgers and everyone else supplied all the sided. And I've got to say, we know some damn good cooks! They were kind enough to leave us with leftovers too! (I love you all...)

The weather cooled off too so we had only 92º to deal with. It's all perspective, isn't it?

There are some photos still in the camera but I haven't had the chance to look at them. The iphone was brought out sort of late in the game, but it takes all of twenty seconds to upload pix, so that's what I'm sharing.

I'm lazy like that.

Actually, I spent about six hours today getting a jump on homework, so no, not lazy. Prioritizing.

06 July 2012

hello, milwaukee

hello, milwaukee


Tuesday night, we fought the crowds and heat of Summerfest. An event, that as a Wisconsinite, I have oddly never attended. Crowds and heat are usually a good enough excuse to keep me away. But DeVotchKa was playing, and they were on my short list of "must see live" bands. Luckily, they didn't play until 10 pm so the temps were cooling off (down to the 90ºs), and I didn't have school the next day. AND only $16 a person! (Well, plus $10 for parking, plus I needed to have a t-shirt to commemorate it, naturally.) The show was fantastic!! We watched the fireworks just behind us over the lake before it started, and they hadn't stopped yet when DeVotchKa hit the stage! It was quite the light show.

We got to bed at 2 am. Then at 5, I woke up abruptly with a pain in my eye. It felt like someone plucked out my eye, sandpapered it a bit, then popped it back in. I flushed it with water for a while but that didn't help. It hurt to move it and I couldn't keep it open. By noon, I gave in and went to urgent care. It took them two hours to tell me my cornea was scratched. How one scratches their cornea in the middle of the night is anybody's guess. It might've been some tiny piece of summerfest flew in my eye, bidding it's time. Turning my head on the pillow might have been all it needed.

So, all in all, the fourth was a bust. But it didn't really affect our plans of sitting in front of the air conditioning all day.

It's all better now, btw. "Corneas heal quickly," I was told.

I can confirm.

04 July 2012

knee high by when?

knee high by when?

corn field

corn rows

Last weekend I had Hubster pull over so I could get of shot of him in the corn. To confirm that the corn around here is well beyond the "knee-high" height requirement. Many fields got an early start due to our extremely warm spring. Wisconsin just had the driest June on record, however, so all the local corn is looking mighty thirsty. For you city folk who know nothing about corn except how to open a can of it, the look of the stalks in the second image are all spiky-like and reaching for the sky (for rain). If they were happily hydrated, their leaves would be bowing down more, like a water fountain.

So, there is your "fun corn fact" of the day! One of...well, one because I don't foresee sharing too many corn facts...

when modeling, stay hydrated (with ice cream)

Here's an outtake of my "model" staying hydrated on the set with what I think was an Oreo shake. He refuses to preform without them.

Happy 4th of July everyone!

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Backtracking a bit to share on


01 July 2012

no appropriate title can possibly bring the amish and lions together

amish men

amish women

At the rate I'm going here, you're going to be looking at zoo photos until November... 

I can't give you any reason as to why these Amish folks were lined up along the side of the road. I think they were just waiting for the zoo to open and watching the dragon boat races from a distance. But I liked that they were standing in front of a "farm."

lioness memorial at the zoo

lioness memorial at the zoo

lioness memorial at the zoo

lioness memorial at the zoo

Inside the zoo, our first stop was the lion exhibit. I had read that the lioness, Vilas, had died of cancer a week prior, but I was not prepared for the memorial on display. As you can see, children filled the glass wall with notes saying their goodbyes. It was a sad and touching tribute. The last capture is an iphone shot since I was too lazy to switch lenses. According to their facebook page, they've since taken the notes down, so I'm glad we hit the zoo when we did.

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fly over country, United States
this blog is my "live" photo album of sorts. occasionally, i'll throw in some art i've done or some work of my husband's as he's an artist as well. we have a nice yard in a quiet neighborhood with two pugs and a cat, all black. which most of my photos will attest too. ;) i'd love to hear from you, but happy for you to just browse. hope you find something to make you smile. b.