Friday, August 5, 2016

Most difficult post of all

Dear Patrons,
Everyone is probably aware of my surgery last December for a ruptured disc but you may not be aware that due to the stipulations put on me by my surgeon I will not be able to continue my sculpting.

This has been a long journey for me (twenty years) and probably the most difficult decision I have  had to make in my entire life. After my physical therapy and my post op visits I reviewed what was said and suggested and have changed a few things I do but it was not quite enough.

My surgeon has told me he does not want me back again and that back injuries are the most frequently abused just due to the fact no one does what they have to do...quite abusing our backs.
I promised him that I would not lift over 25# and that limits me to a lot of things.

My tent alone is over that limit even divided into four bags, even with the breakdown pedestals I purchased and wagon it is just too much. I am not whining I am just admitting that being an artist is not for injured backs.

Even when creating a miniature and my clay is put onto an armature and board that I have to transport to the foundry I am over my pounds much less a large piece. So it is not because I have not thought this out I am just trying to re-think what I want to do for the rest of my life and also stay healthy.

I have enjoyed creating these past twenty years and meeting all my patrons, that part I will miss the most. Also I have made friends of other artist all along the way which have been a family to me. I will go to each of the entities that have helped me in creating all my work and let them know how appreciative I am of their support and friendships...without them there would have been no "me".

I wish to thank Art Castings, Madd Castings and Josephs for being my foundries over the past twenty years, Ric Eighmy (best mold maker in the world) Jafe Parsons (best photographer in the world) and Deb Bakel (best patiner), Tom Love I will never forget you.

Currently I am selling everything that has to do with sculpture from tent to clay so wiping the slate clean as to begin again.

I do not know what life holds for me I just keep hoping that the old saying is true "when one door closes another one opens".

Happy Trails.....Peg

Monday, June 13, 2016

What is a "calling"?

I have heard "everyone has a calling" all my life. I used to worry for years that I did not know what my "calling was" until I began to see a pattern in my life.

My Mom used to tell the story about  me going to the hospital at five years old to have my tonsils removed, I promptly told the Doctor I had to hurry home and "take care of my little family".

Afterwards, growing up, even now, I love animals and humanity as well.  Having all kinds of pets as a child as well as giving my children all sorts of "critters" I also have enjoyed volunteering for numerous human endeavors.

I have on my website a statement that echoes my feelings about caring for animals being important for it speaks to the issue of our treatment of our land, air, water and mankind in general.

When you recycle, not use toxic products , care about the elderly and wish to pass something along to our children that isn't poisoned, destroyed or used up, that should be everyone's "calling".

Take care of our "little family" whether it has two feet or four they don't make more "Earths"!  How do you want to be remembered. Remember the old saying in the hippie days of the sixties? "If you aren't part of the solution you are part of the problem."

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Fun of Commissions (Gertie)

I realize that I have shared a few commissions with you but I am not sure that I have discussed them in length in the creation.

Commissions are gained either by being a request from a patron that has your work already or a patron that sees you at a show or online, I have a small sign in my booth at shows. Often they have an animal or even a business that they would like reflected as a desktop because of their love of a particular animal or wanting to depict  their business in their office.

The commission that I recently finished was for a couple that had a few of my pieces already so we had formed a relationship. This piece, "Gertie" was of a black and tan coonhound and it was easy to fall in love with the subject she was so sweet.

During the next seven months the journey from start to finish was interrupted slightly with my back surgery but usually commissions take that long anyway if not longer especially because there are other entities involved that take at least two months of that time. If you are an artist you always have to remember once your wax is poured and cleaned you have to draw an outline of the bronze for the base and show where pieces extend over like for instance the front feet or neck or tail then you can design the wooden base you are using to place under the subject. This particular one was of walnut but I have included stone in combination of larger pieces such as Refuge in the Wetlands...go to to check it out.

Naturally the first step is to view and acquaint yourself with the dog and take as many pictures as possible to give you accuracy and also see the dog move and interact. I took measurements to back up and reinforce the visual references that way you have two sources. I ended up taking over 200 pictures and even returned for more pictures when I got to details like the paws and nostrils and color pattern. A black and tan has a very distinct pattern all over their body and I fell in love with Gertie's ears.

When you begin your clay you need to make sure you are building on a solid armature that will not shift or move after mold is placed. As you work you want to allow patrons access to this piece (it is their piece) so that they can be a part of the creating, they become your best source for details as they love this animal and have lived with this animal 24/7 and know every little detail literally by heart. This is an area where you can not have a thin skin, listen to them not your ego.

This is what I meant as having very distinct markings typical of coonhounds.
 Even their faces are very defined.  Believe it or
not most of the markings were an echo of what the other side mirrored.
Beautiful markings!

This was the final position chosen by the patrons with the exception of my turning her head slightly as though she were looking to the left (one thing I have learned through the years is that you never want a piece of sculpture to look stiff and looking straight on, it ruins the piece and gives it an elongated look.) Turning head slightly gives it life.


The most difficult part of this entire piece was the patina and getting the look that patrons wanted.


This is a close up showing some of the detail of Gertie even down to bone structure, collar, nose whiskers. You may not be able to show detail such as whisker hair but you leave the impression of the deep marking that give a distinct design to her muzzle.

This was an eight inch piece and perfect size, not too small to show details not too large for carrying or desktop


Thank you Art Castings and Deb Bakel for doing a great job.

Thank you Adam and Diana for giving me the opportunity to work with you and your family and hopefully if there is another artist or patron reading this they have a pet or animal they love and will give me the opportunity to work with them.

What Animal do You Love!

Wednesday, April 20, 2016


This was my first time to pack, travel and show by myself and it was not that bad thanks to being an inside venue and also thanks to my ProPanel pedestals I could stuff everything in my Subaru Forrester.

I traveled around thirteen hundred miles and gone five days and considering the back surgery I had recently I was proud of myself.  Another big help with setting up was a newly purchased wagon which with wheels off fit just fine also.

The weather was overcast and there were tornado warnings all around but the eleven and a half hours included breaks every two hours in an antique shop or local eatery. Speaking of, if you are ever through Dumas, Texas be sure to stop for a meal at Alberts, had best homemade burger (they list them separate on the menus rather than the frozen patty burger. Also homemade pies, I had coconut cream pie that was delicious.

Always if you are an artist keep your travels an adventure and if you are a patron enjoy those shows, artist have worked hard to be there, we even had an artist from Michigan.
One of the joys of traveling is meeting other artist, thanks Jim Clements fantastic oil painter of western scenes and animals, Katy and Don Scroggins, amazing jewelry, and the funniest guy that kept me laughing Terrell Powell with his three-d type of comical art.

Must get back to work, see you on down the road.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Year 2016 Schedule

So far shows are taking their time as usual in letting you know for sure whether or not you are accepted.

Until April 15th I will be in the Old West Museum Show in Cheyenne, Wy.
Then the 14th of April I will leave for Lubbock, Tx for the Lubbock Civic Center Arts Festival through  the 17th
Then I will journey to Jackson Hole, Wy for the July Arts Festival
Also I will be in the Golden Arts Festival.
Other than those I will be playing it by ear and waiting for acceptances.

Appreciate you keeping up with me....

Friday, March 18, 2016

Artist Friend Information

Not too long ago I had another artist friend (Thanks Doug Moomey) let me in on a conversation that he had with artist Burneta Venosdel .

They were discussing the difference in animal anatomy considering what part of the country they were from. The discussion being about buffalo but it pertained to all animals. They adapt to the area that they developed in whether it be in the heat of the desert or the cold of Antarctica .

The discussion brought up the point that you had better know the environment from which you are depicting whatever animal you are doing in something as little noticed as the ears.

Think of the Elephant and those large sweeping ears or the water buffalo then think of the pika or tiny white arctic fox (those two are probably the exception because of the intensity of their hearing necessary for hunting in those extreme areas or the fact that they have to rely on their hearing for predators. Another thing to consider, what has developed in order to survive predators or provide food.

The entire subject was concerning the modern day buffalo and the fact that they were almost completed destroyed but thanks to people like the Goodnight family they survived. The southern herd developed around the Fort Sill area and the northern herd that survived and the buffalo you see in the Yellow Stone area were imported in from the Alberta area. Therefore you are looking at adaptation  of the same animal in different ways due to the cold or heat. The southern herd having larger ears and the northern having smaller ears in order that the body heat not escape.

So not only do you have to make sure your animal is a particular age or sex you have to take into consideration the area that you are depicting that animal in...for instance the moose are fairly small below the 65th parallel but above they can stand almost 8 feet at the shoulder.

Thanks for dropping in...........

Friday, February 12, 2016

"Feisty Visitor"

This was a fun quick piece also because of not only the size but of the nature of this cute little wren. I really want people to feel the energy that this little guy puts forth in all his daily struggles.

This is not to say that I did not have trials with this tiny piece but it did have its challenges. In the beginning I was pre-fabing the branches and the foundry was cutting them exactly where the bird had to be welded therefore re-welding in exactly the same area that was already weakened by the heat. So after several hours of "holding, welding, falling apart" this became foolish.

In the end I molded the three branches so that they could stay in tact so then it was just a matter of holding the three branches while the wren was balanced correctly with the attitude that I was trying to capture while it was welded.
Feisty Visitor

When the branches were created and molded I went ahead and placed the feet onto the limbs so that created a problem in getting the feet to line up with the body each and every time. So basically this is a sweet piece that has already sold Ed. 1,2, and 3 but in other ways it has been the piece from H*ll because of not anticipating all the problems created in the welding process.

I originally created this piece with my sister who lives in Georgia in mind, she and I were chatting and she mentioned that she had a wren off her deck that had an attitude, so therefore I just had to create this little guy.

Remember the popularity of the angry baby robin pictures well the wren is a great example of memorable attitudes.
Thanks for dropping in.