Thursday, October 30, 2008

a linking tag from jean yates

and this is her blog:

I was tagged on her blog to write seven things about myself that no one knows...

until now, of course.

1. I was an obsessive-compulsive child. I believed I had an invisible life string attached to the back of my foot and couldn't get it tangled up and other stupid stuff like that, but no particular habit lasted longer than a few months at a time. I had to turn on and off the lights a certain number of times and touch things with both hands in order to feel balanced.

2. I went to art school with Disney Animation in mind, but lost interest when I read the fine print and coincidentally discovered Prosthetic Makeup effects at the same time.

3. I really like stage theater. I love acting and would continue to if I had the time. My favorite role ever was Rosencrantz in Tom Stoppard's "Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead".

4. I hate talking on the phone, and always have. It makes my head hurt and my ears burn and my neck always gets sore. Most people don't know this about me, because I try to stay off the phone as much as possible.

5. My top 10 favorite films (in no particular order) are:

A. Amadeus
B. The Dark Crystal
C. The Fellowship of the Ring (if I can only consider one of the three)
D. The Seventh Seal (the 1957 film by Ingmar Bergman)
E. Little Big Man
F. The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
G. The Nightmare Before Christmas
H. The Ninth Configuration
I. The Exorcist
J. Raising Arizona

6. My top 10 favorite bands (in no particular order except for #1) are:

A. Pink Floyd
B. Mogwai
C. Explosions in the Sky
E. Grandaddy
F. Moby
G. Tycho
H. Phish
I. Tom Waits

7. I can play a mean ocarina.

the cartoon is really coming along...

i posted the picture of sally the squirrel six months ago and now I've got the sound done, almost all of the animation clips for every character, and 12.5 minutes of episode one completed.

I was able to get the unfinished work on my ipod to show around...

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

pride is prejudice

The supremacist is an individual who has failed to develop an understanding of the true power that is wisdom through humility, having formed a superficial sense of esteem by idealizing his/her own random discrepancies of physical characteristics over which no human being can wield control.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

back from minneapolis, on to pittsburgh

minneapolis was a good show. I always enjoy seeing Doris and Bruce, the Iontas from Spotted Moon and the Star of the North artists. For a few years now we've made a tradition out of Saturday night lousy Chinese buffet. It's fun to joke around about the food and laugh about the day's experiences with customers.

and now i'm going to pittsburgh on friday for Jane's Bead Mercantile show, which has always been great. i like the people in the show and I've even become quite familiar with the hotel staff over the last three years.

steve and sarah came over recently to record some music for my cartoon and it went really well. it sounds great considering my lousy recording equipment. i showed my cartoon in progress to several people at the show in minneapolis and received a wonderfully positive response. it was very reassuring to hear people laughing (especially one girl in particular who said she watched a lot of cartoon network and adult swim). so I'll be taking all the equipment with me this weekend and will be working on it every night I'm there.

then I return on Monday night and fly out on Tuesday for the Oakland, CA - BABE! show. Aveesh's birthday is on the 4th, so i'm going early and staying during the week before the show on the 8th and 9th. busy busy busy

but i miss cynthia and azalea when i'm gone.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

hard week

we crunched for days before Faeriecon and the turn out was sort of disappointing. no surprise, really... last year was slow and we signed up again for this year with the intention of making all sorts of costume pieces. we made a bunch of horns but that was about it. this past year has been too busy to prepare for such a small show.

now cynthia, azalea and andrew are in new york for the Soft Flex show this weekend. I have high hopes that it will turn out well. I will be here all week working on my cartoon and finishing some piano music after cleaning up the house and fixing up the mustang.

off to the auto parts store and sporting goods store. I started working out recently and really forced myself to do more than ever before... and for the first time in my life I felt great the next day. The pain I felt before now feels like a deep tissue massage. I love it.

office work is almost done for the day. time for fun with bob and steve.

Monday, September 08, 2008

A Study in Magic: It's Movement and Application

Part One: Wizardry
Section One: Identification and Transformation of Sorcery


Not far away, not long ago,
just after the sun left the sky;
a woman named Donna LeMar left her home,
concealing her bright, new black eye.

The husband had gone after punching his wife
for late night delivery driving,
where he'd gather around with his friends and tell lies:
how his marriage was healthy and thriving.

Not far from Donna's, a neighborhood block,
as the moon slowly started to climb;
a young man named David McKay raced the clock
to deliver a pizza on time.

He punched at the wheel and he cursed everything,
his adjectives rather absurd.
As he sped by, our friend Donna was watching
and promptly showed David her bird.

She had mistaken young David for Alex,
her husband who drove the same car:
usually pizza in their neighborhood
was delivered by Mr. LeMar.

The lady in waiting for pizza that evening
was one Ms. Melinda Millay,
who never had once ordered food in her life
and happily cooked every day.

Now Ms. Melinda sat rocking in silence,
her eyes back and forth between crying.
Some hours before, she had learned of the violence
her son suffered as he lay dying.

When David saw Donna with finger held high,
his tender, young heart split in two:
he had been seeing his friend's wife for years
and believed her love for him was true.

Enraged and distraught, Dave squeeled to a stop
and revved the gas loud as he could,
conveying to Donna the sound of his pain
with the screaming from under the hood.

David let go the brake, leaving behind
a gust of foul smoke in his wake,
and put the scenario out of his mind
for a moment, for Ms. Millay's sake.

The screech in the street gave Melinda a start
and she jumped up and down in her joy,
convinced in the depths of her fragile, old heart
that someone brought news of her boy.

David was out of the car in a flash
with the pizza and garlic cheese dip,
and jumped up the steps to the porch in a dash
with the hopes of still earning a tip.

Melinda Millay turned on the porch light
and quickly threw open the door,
where there, at the steps, stood a ghost of her son
from only a few years before.

She beckoned him in with her arms in the air,
longing to feel his embrace,
and batted the tufts of her wispy, white hair
away from the tears on her face.

But all that young David could see in her eyes
and all he believed her to be
was a crazy, old woman deprived of her prize;
resolved that her meal should be free.

Exhausted, frustrated, annoyed and convinced
that Melinda would claim she was cheated,
David set down all the food he'd brought in
and said words that will not be repeated.

All of the hatred from all of the people
that led down this chain of events
gathered as one in a moment of evil
and spit out a virulent offense.

Then black turned to white and the dark became light
and the power of love ran it's course
when Melinda Millay played the angel that day
and a sponge for that negative force... all of the memories haunting her nights
from the years that she spent with her son;
the arguments, gripes, disagreements and fights
were finally coming undone.

Melinda then realized that anger was merely
a sign of an impatient mind
as the face of her son slowly faded away
and young David's creeped in from behind.

She reached for her wallet that lay on the table
and David's eyes followed her hand,
where the Balance of Goodness showed David the truth
in a way that he could understand.

He saw in a mirror-- or was it a photo?
A boy who could pass as his twin!--
-and all in a moment, young Dave was exposed
to a glimpse of the pain she was in.

He glanced at Melinda and covered his face,
then left without taking his pay,
and hoped Ms. Millay would forgive this disgrace--
for David had nothing to say.

He ran from her house and rammed on the gas,
sped along Ms. Millay's road,
jumped from his car and up onto the grass
of his girlfriend's humble abode.

All he could say when she opened the door
was simply, "Forgive me", and then
he turned to his car and returned to the store
and never saw Donna again.

He hung up his keys, changed from his clothes
and told all his friends he was leaving;
then gave back his polo, his nametag and hat
and the money that he had been thieving.

Later that evening, when Alex went home,
he found his packed bags in the yard.
He begged and he pleaded, but Donna repeated
that splitting up wasn't so hard.

Kindly, she waved as her husband departed
and gave him a hug on the lawn,
then proudly, defiantly lifted her finger--
discreetly, though, after he'd gone.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

nice time last night here at the house

Cynthia and Andrew went to visit our friend Anne in Atlanta. They left around 3 and then Steve and his new wife Sarah hung around for most of the evening. After a hamburger cookout we played some music. Sarah is really good at sight-reading for piano and played some of my old compositions. I never finished any of them, but hearing her play the beginnings so well brought them back to life for me.

Then Steve and I got guitars and Sarah got out her mandolin and we played some other songs we've written. Sarah has a great voice and I have some other folk songs I wrote years ago that I never performed in public because I thought they would sound better sung by a woman. I'll be bringing those out next time!

Sheila went to a party at one of our friends' house. About an hour passed between Steve and Sarah's departure and Sheila's return. During that time, Azalea and I played Butterfly Memory on the coffee table... and she was amazing! I used 8 pairs of 16 cards and scattered them around before lining them up in a perfect 4x4 pattern. I could tell if she was going to get one if she hesitated at all after seeing the first card. When she was successful, it was instant! She would look at the first card for just a fraction of a second and then drop her body weight onto the card with both hands.... and they were always cards she had seen within the last 2 attempts. So today we will practice more and improve those odds!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

good times in california

having a lot of fun out here in california...
first at the ISGB show in Oakland,
then in Pasadena for the Bead and Design show.
heading home soon next tuesday night so I can unpack and repack in time for the Interweave BeadFest in Philadelphia. crammed schedule! I hope I have time to finish some office work and clean things up around the shop.

first picture here is Kira from Saki Silver holding Carter Seibels' display for ISGB. It was very well done; the beads looked like delicate little flowers atop the thin wire stems:

second picture is Sak, Kira and Aveesh (the shadows are Micky and me). before flying kites we played with the remote control porsche for awhile and chased Finn around for some good laughs....

third picture is a white pickup truck on fire on our way to the show on thursday morning in pasadena. never saw anything like this even when i lived here for three years...

last picture is a view of the city at night from our balcony. again, nothing like i saw when i lived here.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Quite a crowd at Bele Chere

Nice festival! There was a lot of great art there, like a clay flute maker and a couple ladies who made amazing orchid sculptures out of polymer (we bought a few).
I couldn't believe how hot it was. I don't ever remember it getting that hot before. But the crowds showed up, as you can see. It was fun.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

A Game

Contents: 1 universe, incl. solar system and planet Earth.

No. of Players: 1 to Everyone

Ages: All

Setup: Survive early life long enough to construct substantial moral, social and psychological foundations. Become capable of self-sufficiency and knowledgable of basic scientific laws.

Object of the game: To break down the concept of time and understand it's use as a language, a series of words (i.e. hour, era, generation) and symbols (i.e. a clock, the stages of sunlight from dawn to dusk) created to enable order within society.

Hints: Imagine if the world never turned on it's axle and it was bright all day, every day... and organic life was free of the need to sleep. The surface of the Earth would appear to bubble with creative instances; each life would swell into adulthood and fade into deterioration without the nighttimes to distance us from our pasts. Our minds would be free to experience the purity of moments, to embrace them as attributes of ourselves instead of shadows of the people we once were.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Two Observations

The Purpose:
To transform oneself into a compassionate being whose actions, intentions and contributions to the advancement and enhancement of the entire human organism shine as an example of good's triumph over evil and love's necessary role in the creative process.

The Secret:
Every particle of matter,
molecule of gas,
human emotion and thought
is Magnetic,
with a polar opposite that is positive or negative
in accordance with relativity.

The hatred we feel for the things we onced loved is as intense as that love we once felt.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

a step up in production

Amazing job by Tony on this Rumi Bird Pendant wax tree... 99 pieces on there. We used to think that 32 was pushing it on the small centrifugal flasks, but now we've got this huge perforated vacuum flask that puts us on a whole new level. It's burning out as I write this. The moment of truth is upon us.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

getting ready for denver, co show

tony has been working hard in the garage, doing an awesome job on wax trees in preparation for the rocky mountain bead bazaar. we'll probably be casting on Monday night or Tuesday morning. Cynthia is hard at work on her book proposal for Interweave, as my meeting with them in denver is friday before the show.... and I've been hard at work on my new cartoon!

I now have the vocal tracks for the elephant, squirrel, acorn and bumblebee. I still need the carrot, jackalope, peanut, turtle and incidental characters. It's a lot of fun! But I need to complete the entire soundtrack with music and everything before I can start animating over it.

Here is a picture of sally in development:

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

day 4 of a 5 day fast

I've been fasting for the past four days while using an herbal cleanse, and I suggest it to anyone who has thought of doing it. Sure I miss food, but the herbal drink is substantial enough to give you that "feeling" of being full.... and you take it 5 times a day, so it really isn't so bad. My skin has completely cleared up and changed in color from grayish to pink-orange, and I feel lighter on my feet than I have in several years. Kudos to Blessed Herbs Co.!

On another note, I'm far along on my cartoon. The script is done, the characters are designed and most of the voices are locked down. I want a different actor for every voice, so it doesn't seem so cheap. My friend Melissa is coming over tonight to record the main character. Hopefully I'll have my own voices and Cynthia's done by then so I can start putting some of the audio together for the first scene. I'll be gone this weekend in Philadelphia for a three-day show, so I should be able to get a lot done at night after each day. The animation will take a while, but if I am able to get onto a network, it will be worth it.... and then I'll have to come up with 12 more episodes! I can't wait!!!

Monday, March 24, 2008

been in cincinnati for a week

I haven't blogged in a long time. I can't just tell everything on here, so sometimes I delay writing an entry in the hopes that I will think of something that isn't either deeply personal or terribly boring... and so what results is a blog that isn't updated with sometimes a month or more between entries. I enjoy writing on here when I have the opportunity, and (for a while) was even trying to force myself to update as often as possible, such as the wizard story (which I plan to continue, but trade shows abound and I usually only have three days at home and four away.) Creative writing is a psychological escape, one I enjoy doing most when at home. It's hard to write at home because I'm always either working or spending time with the family.... so I am forced to do it when away, when time permits and the countless distractions subside.

I've been visiting my mother for a week and I've had a nice time. Cynthia has been working on some awesome projects and wanted some quiet time to finish them up so I took the opportunity to come visit some of my family with Azalea. We got to see my sister Jenny, my grandparents on my father's side and my uncle Steve.

Played some games at Steve's house and had a great time! I swear, everytime I go over there he has some game I always dreamed of seeing or wanted to create myself. I find it very entertaining to escape into a fantasy world through games.... it takes a lot more brain power than just crashing in front of the TV for a movie. You have to interact with it directly and your decisions determine the outcome (like the climax in a movie), only the outcome is different everytime and you learn a lot about how your own brain works when putting it through such tests. It's great to play a game when socializing and catching up with someone, because it keeps you seated and settled and provides a justifiable distraction when the conversation idles.

I also got to see my old elementary and high school best friend Bryan Edwards. We were inseparable back then, and all the sudden we completely fell out of contact when I started college. It's been twelve years, so he looks different and sounds different and that's a little wierd, but we had a great time reminiscing and catching up. I hope to do more of that when I visit my mother next time.

I'm going home tomorrow so Azalea can be back in time for a slumber party with her friends Nathea and Cassie over at Tony and Lisa's.... and so I can catch up on work and get a casting done before the Interweave show in King of Prussia, PA. I'm looking forward to that show. Miami is the week after that and Denver is two weeks later, followed by San Fransisco the week after that when Bob Burkett will be flying back with me to prepare for Bead and Button in Milwaukee in June. So the schedule is looking full but all is well and the future looks bright. I will try to find time to blog as much as possible.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

back from tucson and cleaning up

we just got back from tucson and most of us have healed from the annual sickness. seems like we get sick everytime we go.
i got to see a lot of people i haven't seen in a long time and met a lot of new friends! especially wendy, jess and todd from vintaj... we've known each other for a while but i really got to know them this week... and we're talking about making some collaborative pieces and maybe even our own trade show some day!
it was a good time all around. our most successful tucson yet!

i just started working on a new cartoon idea. and i won't say anything about it except that the main character is an elephant who considers herself an agnostic theist. she is very kind and considerate toward her arch-nemesis, an angry athiest peanut who is always weary of ellie's intentions.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Leaving for Tucson in five days!

and it's crazy around here... but it's also a lot of fun to cast such a large variety of things! Bob and Tony & Lisa and I are all taking turns on the torch and managing the equipment so everyone gets everything done. It will be nice to relax on the road after all this work for the past few weeks.
We just cast some bronze a few days ago, and it looks great.... even though 2/3 of them didn't come out. What we did get is cool... I'm excited about experimenting with ammonia and copper-topper on it.
so we just put a deposit down on a little 8-day old Shiba Inu puppy! A year ago Cynthia told me she never wanted a dog, but the right one can change anybody!
And we're going to name her Kitsune (Japanese for "fox").... she's red and looks just like one!

Friday, January 25, 2008

a little reflection

I'm conflicting with emotion via silent contemplation,
as misery and apathy promote self-condemnation.
My heart reveals itself, so I approach with apprehension
to find a loss without reprieve and love without pretension.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

The Golden Key

In a far away land of kings and queens,
of jester’s tricks and courtly scenes,
when people carried bows and swords
the lands were ruled by dukes and lords.

There were no cars or telephones,
no diamond saws for cutting stones.
‘Twas flints they used to sharpen knives;
‘twas knives they used for ending lives.

No Haagan Daaz or Oreos,
no Lucky Charms or Cheerios.
No Cherry Coke or Mountain Dew;
just water, wine and veggie stew.

They lived content but shorter lives,
and rarely men outlived their wives.
To no surprise, death hindered birth
when war erupted on the Earth.

Then darkness fell across the land,
the hourglasses lost their sand.
“The sun set down one night,” they say,
“and did not rise the following day.”

The sun decided late one night
that men weren’t worthy of it’s light.
‘Twas locked behind a hidden door
when men were selfish, fighting war.

Diseases brought abundant tears,
some famines lasted fifty years.
The people lost all will to live
‘cause no one had strength left to give.


Late one night, like a singing bird,
a little child’s voice was heard.
“I know the answer!” was his call.
“I’ll bring light back to one and all!”

“The sun is locked away, you see,
confined, and feeling quite lonely!
I’ll seek him out and set him free
once I have found the Golden Key!”

“Hooray!” the people screamed with joy.
“Our hearts are with this young, brave boy!”
With food in his bag and a sword on his hip,
the boy set out on a foolish trip.

He searched among the white corn stalks
and looked beneath the river rocks.
He searched each house in all the land
and dug holes in the ocean sand.

He panned the lakes and climbed the trees,
he walked the woods and sailed the seas.
He searched, regardless of his fears,
which grew as months turned into years.

He looked above and underground,
but that Golden Key he never found,
until, at last, his thoughts consoled
the fear that he’d finally grown too old.

His bag he packed, his sword threw down,
the time had come to return to town.
His home was not a familiar sight:
his friends had long since taken flight!

He bought an old cabin and lived out his years
writing his story and crying his tears.
He’d spent his whole life in pursuit of that key,
and never quite realized it’s proximity!

The key had become to this man like the Grail,
and a legend was formed from his sorrowful tale.
He’d searched for the key just to bolster his pride,
while the answer was actually deep down inside.

The very last lines of his diary read,
“I’ve lived a full life, now it’s time to be dead.
We must all know the question is not ‘Where’s the key?’
The question is ‘Who?’ The answer is—“

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Bob Burkett is here!

and all is well. He arrived safely in Charlotte at 9:30pm.
So tomorrow we'll be working on wax and new molds for Tucson!
and our friend Jen will be helping out and learning the casting process with us!

Cynthia and Azalea arrived safely in Orlando. Cynthia will be representing at the Bead Mercantile show in Ft. Lauderdale this weekend... and then in Clearwater next weekend. It's good that Tony and Lisa from Zoa Art are doing these shows, too. They will be next to us at the Best Bead Show at the Kino Center this year as well.

thanks to my dear mother I acquired a nice lathe recently and Bob had the idea of creating bottles with it. So I'll be working on all sorts of exciting new things this week! and I've always dreamed of creating my own sweet chess set. I was thinking of spinning out some chunky basic posts and then hand-carving the faces and detail.... but that will have to wait until after we get back from arizona.... locking into bead mode now!