Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Finally...Introducing Rocky Mountain Thunder (bighorns)

I can finally post a picture of the new Rocky Mountain Thunder, depicting two bighorn rams fighting on a rocky ledge trying to gain the rights to breed the females.

This was fun to do and I loved the research as this is one of my favorite animals to watch (if you missed the post where I created this one go back a few  months) it was actually November 21st.



Creating new work...Whitetail Deer

I had so many people checking out the post on armatures that I thought I would take you from the start of the piece as I did in the beginning of this blog.

This will be a large piece of work and hopefully it will be clear, I used a standard armature for a sculpture around 15 inches high.

 You will notice all the wire coming off the pipe and T for legs, neck

This shows where I have measured for all my leg joints which is very important to do before adding any muscle or movement to the figure.

Book that I could not do without during research as to the position I want my animal and whether he be standing, running, walking etc. Muybridge was fantastic

Here I am actually beginning to see the form, notice I have marked major muscle in rear and shoulder, the head is just stuck on to give me something to visualize while I get the "sneak" or following a doe look.

Antlers have always been a problem because you have to have flexibility, strength, and strong hands to wrap the tiny wires (or unwrap if you are not lucky to get it the first time) and I always have to play with this so that I get what I want. I always run into the fact that my wrap ends up being wider than I want the clay to be so it gets unwound and rewound many times. I make my antlers separate from the animal just where they do not have to be cut off in the mold process. I place a small clear tube (Home Depot) in the head so that I can insert the antlers as I work to make sure they look correct.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

New Website

Dear Friends I am so excited to be able to announce a new website. I have been wanting to do this for a  long time so now I have

I am so proud of this site and it has been needed for a long time but you know that is something that I have just procrastinated about.

So go and browse and enjoy.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Muddling through the "Good Life"

I picked up the other day "The Creative Spirit" by Daniel Goleman and found one of my favorite people Chuck Jones had added a few of his cartoons being my favorite Wile E Coyote.

Chuck Jones "fearing the dragon of anxiety is the necessary springboard to creativity."

Concentrate on what truly matters and don't get caught up in the banter of life, tv, computers, all are distractions.  Go for a long walk when needing refreshing  or to clean out the trials of the day.  Who doesn't think of great ideas or solve problems while showering or driving or on a leisurely walk.

"Four powerful tools for developing creativity.
Faith in your own creativity, absence of judgment, precise observation and penetrating questions. Remember the only dumb question is the one you do not ask."

Which brings me to add a note that I have declared 2015 to be the year of learning by asking dumb questions. If it saves me time or money I want to inquire as to "how" and learn.  Humbling yourself by asking advice (something a lot of us have problems doing) is as it should be an adventure in learning.

"Interpersonal intelligence is knowing oneself". You know where you have doubts and fears or where you fall in your day to day creating journey so you know what needs to be worked on or supported.  Everyone needs to embrace and cultivate this self knowledge.

"Life is, after all, not a question with an answer-it is a project to be lived." Eric Maisel

Listen to your inner thoughts more than the chatter of everyday demands, just remember to delete the negative. Mindless chatter does not benefit you, try to recognize beneficial ideas.

I wish I could watch Wile E Coyote cartoons in my studio all day as I work...I think it would add to my "joy", enjoy your creating.

"If one advances in the direction of his dreams, one will meet with success unexpected in common hours."  Henry David Thoreau

Friday, March 13, 2015


I know you are wondering where the Big Horns are and where in the process they are...they are being placed on a walnut base at the moment and will not have any photographs until April (first week) so must be patient which is always hard for me to be, have already had a gentleman look at it and make an offer but it was just a shy short of where practicality steps into the picture. Never rip yourself off trying to make that piece start moving right away before you even have it public there will always be people watching a piece that are familiar with the foundry and process.

Always remember until you have all your figures and expenses and can know exactly what you should charge not to cheat yourself you can not allow that piece out of your possession even if and especially if you have not even taken it home yet or to its first showing.

Always remember also that you have no photos of that piece and in the beginning it is so important to not sell a piece of work without pictures. It is your most important marketing tool. You can not sell Ed. #2 without pictures of Ed. #1 to use in marketing while the other is still in the foundry process.

Public Art

I wish I had nice things to say about public art but....

My few experiences with public art have been tragic and very disturbing and I have decided that they are not worth the time it takes to get nervous, get your own bids, write up the proposal and submit in the hopes that you will be picked.

About two months ago I received an email from a woman handling the prospects of rounding up bids for a project acknowledging therapy dogs....she contacted me due to the referral of a friend and business associate. This journey began on a Wednesday, she did not give many details except that it would entail a donation that had been given for that purpose. I informed her that I would love to hear the details.

Friday she emailed me that it concerned therapy dogs and wanted to show the relationship and interaction with patients or humans. Said she would get back to me as soon as she had more information due to the fact that they just started.

Monday I noticed that four different artist were receiving the same email and inquiry rather than me personally so I knew there would be competition. The lady sent pictures involving the site located and how it should relate to the existing sculpture of two children playing.

Tuesday I inquired as to where the proposal should be sent and whether there was a budget of any kind or cap on the project....no response.

Wednesday morning I received an address and told to just send my proposal as long as they had it by March 31, which is when they would present it to the board........two hours later I received an email saying thanks for participating that the artist had been chosen and that they could move forward. I was blown away by the nerve, rudeness and assault on my being. They should at least give other artist an opportunity to open their minds with new ideas, fresh, exciting thoughts. Even though it is legal it is still soooooo awful.

Later I read on sculpture.net that that is the case quite often where they have already picked the piece and artist but legally have to make it public and offer it to other artist.

Another case in point, I heard on the news that they were attempting to pass the city legal red tape to build a new stadium where my children went to school and I thought "ah, another chance" so since they had not made it public yet for 1% and the budget was 220,000,000 that I could sure get my bid in and began again to come up with the paper work involved and bids. This time would be a little different because I had a maquette that would fit the plan.....a week later I find the layout of the budget online for the stadium and the piece of sculpture is already allotted for and described as half football player and half Ram.

So I admire anyone that has been able to break into that realm of business because unless you finance a piece yourself (which I am talking 50,000 or more depending on how large you are talking)  to have on hand or donate a piece (which believe it or not artist do) just to be able to break into that side of the business and say they have one out there it is a tough road. I have met artist that have said they have tried for 20 years and never made it, yet I have other friends that do nothing but outdoor monuments or outdoor installations and it is like asking the "great big secret" to find out how they began. I do not need that kind of frustration, art is difficult to get correct enough as it is.

So I guess I will forever do just desk top pieces and be proud of those and love my patrons as I do..

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Creating with Fearless Abandon

If you read me often you know I love books...well here is one to read." Coaching the Artist Within" by Eric Maisel

"Creating should come first thing every morning before the "mental chatter" begins and chores are demanding." Negative self-talk is a creativity killer.

Effectively coach yourself- can you positively influence yourself, openly communicate with yourself, monitor yourself and chat with yourself. You birth someone who knows you, chids you, congratulates you and loves you when you need it.

Fearlessly acknowledge the problem.
Inquire as to why.

"When you can't step away from yourself to observe, when you are boxed into yourself, your sight is myopic and your thinking repetitive and stereotypic. You can't see answers in fact you can't even see questions."
If you don't think that you, your ideas, or your work matters you won't have the motivational juice to create.
"What I think and create matters."  (mantra)
"Act like you have an inner cheerleader."
Make your life meaningful to at least yourself.
Live authentically!

What is your real reason for living and the role you intend to play in life?
Fill your days with Love of Life! (and it will show in your work)

This is an older book but I still may invest in it to have to re-read often...great read.