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Bald Eagle

Dear readers,

It would seem as if I’ve dropped off the planet in these past two months.  Despite the long break from blogging, I assure you that I have been busy creating artwork.  I have also been devoting a lot of time to building a website at last.

In honor of the 4th of July, I decided to share with you my newest drawing.  I haven’t drawn a bald eagle for years, and it has been on my to-do list for quite some time.  I don’t usually enjoy drawing birds, but I was so pleased by how much I enjoyed this drawing.  It made the process pure fun.

Bald Eagle

– 8×10 inch Ampersand scratchboard.

– I used mostly a #11 X-Acto Blade for this, and used two sizes of fiberglass brush to really whiten the light areas.  I also used Faber-Castel Pitt Artist pens for adding depth of value and also to correct mistakes.

Bald Eagle CR

A few close-ups.

Thank you for looking, and happy Independence Day!

 
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Posted by on July 3, 2016 in All Artwork, Scratchboard

 

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The Junk Thief

Meet the Junk Thief. I call him that because I made another crow similar to this one last year. He is wearing fancy, (fake) diamond encrusted wings and a jewel tail, and I named him the Jewel Thief.  Remember him?

Sculptures 104CR

Look at him, hogging this post that doesn’t belong to him!  He’s shameless.

I more recently make this poor thing in the pictures below. I knew he was ugly and unfortunate from the moment I called him finished. He was kind of sad and strange, and I just had to laugh, because he is sort of the opposite of my Jewel Thief. Thus, he is the Junk Thief.

Junk Thief

-Measures 2 1/2 inches tall by 4 1/2 inches long by 1 3/4 inches wide.

-Made with mostly 19 gauge dark annealed wire, as well as some silver wire for the feet. The tail is some random piece of old jewelry I had, and the wings are from a metal flower pin that I took apart to “build” wings. The beak is a cone-shaped bead from an art store. Like I said, he’s sort of homely, but that’s just how it goes sometimes.

But don’t despair, the Junk Thief has just as much dignity and self-esteem as his rival, Jewel Thief. 😉

Thank you for looking.

 
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Posted by on March 19, 2016 in All Artwork, Sculpture & Mixed Media

 

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Squirrel

If you were to explore my embellishment boxes, you would find many feather-esque pieces.  I’ve used them for “doo-dads” in horse’s manes, I’ve used them for animal ears, I’ve even used them for – you guessed it – feathers on my bird sculptures.

Last fall at Junk Bonanza, I spotted a feather-shaped pin.  This was no ordinary pin.  Picture a feather that you might see being used for a quill pen.  Large and a bit droopy in its shape.  The very moment I spotted this feather, I saw a squirrel tail.  A perfect, bushy squirrel tail.  So I bought it.

Here is the result.

Squirrel

– Measures 5 inches long by 3 & 1/2 inches tall by 2 inches wide.

– This piece is made with…I believe it was some 19 gauge, 22 gauge, 26 gauge, and 30 gauge steel wire.  I’m not completely certain, as it’s been a little while since I made this piece.  The tail is that cool feather pin, and the ears are tiny leaf-shaped pieces that I had on hand.  The squirrel is holding tightly to an acorn, which is an embellishment I purchased at a card-making shop.

I am happy to say that this little fellow sold at my art show earlier this month. 🙂

Thank you for looking!

 
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Posted by on February 15, 2016 in All Artwork, Sculpture & Mixed Media

 

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The King’s Horse

Dear readers, brace yourselves for a lengthy post!  I’m sharing my latest sculpture, though I have several other new ones to post in the next couple of weeks as well, so stay tuned.

Late one night, I was unable to sleep.  When it’s late and I cannot sleep, my mind tends to wander…often to the topics of art or writing.  It was a night like this that got me thinking.  With all of my broken jewelry, found items, and metal junk, what if I made a horse decked out in elaborate medieval armor?

I was so excited by the idea that I nearly got up right then to start sifting through my collection of found items.  But it was 3:00 AM and I hadn’t slept at all, so I stayed put and eventually got to sleep…probably with a smile on my face.

The very next day, I got to work looking through my embellishments, picking out pieces and items that struck a chord with me.  Within a couple of days, I was building the horse itself.  The horse is among my larger pieces, and with all the embellishments, it took me quite a while to complete this piece.

The King’s Horse

– Measures 10 & 1/2 inches long by 9 inches tall by 3 & 3/4 inches wide.

– Made with some 16 gauge dark annealed wire, but primarily with 18 gauge dark annealed wire.  The 18 gauge is just the right balance of sturdiness and softness.  I can bend and shape it pretty easily, yet it’s strong enough to hold up.  I also used very fine black wire for attaching embellishments.  The process of attaching my found items is somewhat like sewing.  Take the thin wire, weave it into the bands of heavier wire numerous times until everything holds tightly.  This is my favorite part of building sculptures.

– Embellishments.  Oh, where to begin?  I guess it all started with the stirrups.  I found a pair of sort of square-shaped earrings at a flea market last year, and I knew from the moment I saw them that I wanted them to be stirrups for a horse sculpture.  And here we are.  The “straps” of the stirrups are a matched pair of earrings, too, I believe.  Put together, these two pairs of earrings made ideal stirrups.  The band of looped chains/coins around the entire body of the horse is, in fact, part of a belt.  You know how it is…you’re out shopping with some friends, you’re a teenager, you see a weird, jangling, unusual belt and buy it, convinced that you will wear it all the time.  You will.

…That was me back in my teens.  I never wore the belt once in my life, but I have never regretted buying it, because it made for some priceless embellishments for my wire sculptures.  You might also remember pieces of this very belt from my Aluminum Horse a few years ago, https://thecozyred.wordpress.com/2012/11/07/the-aluminum-horse/ .  The King’s Horse took up all but a few scraps of this belt, and what I had left happened to be just the right amount to wrap around the horse’s body.  It was meant to be.  Of course, I had to repair some parts of the belt and rebuilt it a little to get it to look like a complete loop and not just a scrap length of chain.  The saddle is an ornate necklace part that has five hinged sections.  I loved that because it drapes so nicely across the horse’s back.  It was bright gold when I bought it, but I painted it with metallic acrylic paints until the piece had the same patina and feel of the rest of the embellishments.  The rump of the horse is draped with a necklace piece, also hinged, that I found at a thrift store.  That, too, had to be painted to suit the rest of the sculpture.  The horse’s tail is a thick cluster of various chains.  The horse’s mane is part of a necklace.  The ears were fun to construct.  I had found small metal embellishments at an art store that reminded me of a tiny phonograph or gramophone horns in their shape.  I couldn’t resist the strange shape.  But for this sculpture, I ended up turning these pieces upside down so the wide, ruffled ends were against the horse’s head.  The pointed ends of these embellishments were a great suggestion of armored pieces the shape of a horse’s ears.  So I wired two of these embellishments together and reshaped the open ends to set nicely on the horse’s head, and then wired them down.  The face shield is a pendant I had on hand, which also needed to be painted.  And finally, the reins are a simple chain, held by the mouth of the horse with jump rings, which are wired in place.

If you’re still reading this, thank you.  I appreciate your interest.  Let’s look at the photos at last. 🙂

There will be a lot of photos, too, so bear with me.

Thank you very much for looking!  Please feel free to leave comments if you wish – I love hearing from you! 🙂

 
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Posted by on February 11, 2016 in All Artwork, Sculpture & Mixed Media

 

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Checotah

With an art show coming up in less than a month, things have been busy around here!  This will be my first indoor art show, and I am really looking forward to it!  It’s called the Banbury Art Crawl, and you can read up on it at banburyartcrawl.org if you’re curious.  It sounds like a fun show.  I attended it once just as a visitor and I was so inspired by the fresh, unique artwork that was on display by many talented artists.  I am so looking forward to being a part of the show!

So aside from working on my drawing of Norman, I’ve also been trying to get more sculptures going.  Here is one of my recent pieces.  Last fall, there was a clearance sale with all sorts of fall-colored items, including wire.  I snatched up some spools of orange wire (it is not copper…just orange colored).  When I bought them, I was thinking of bird legs and beaks, but the more I looked at it, the more I saw a bay colored horse.  So this is my result.

I am pleased to say that even though I was working on my inventory for the art show, this little guy has already sold.  At our family Christmas party, my aunt saw him and couldn’t resist, so she bought him as a Christmas gift to herself.  She promptly named him Checotah.  She and her husband once drove through Checotah, Oklahoma and she decided that if she ever had a horse, she’d call him Checotah.  Thanks, Jurine! 🙂

Checotah

-Made with some 19 gauge dark annealed wire and some 22 gauge paddle wire just for the “bones” of the horse.  Once the piece was secure with heavier wire, I added layers of finer black wire for the legs and muzzle, and the orange wire for the body.  Though the wire looked bright orange on the spool, it looks quite convincing as a bay color on the horse, don’t you think?  The tail is a tiny bit of very fine chain.  The mane is a piece of an old earring.  Those black and silver spear-like pieces on the earring looked like an interesting horse’s mane to me, so I went with it.

-I did not have a chance to measure this piece before it sold, so I’m guessing on the size.  It is approximately 3 inches long x 2 3/4 inches tall x 1 inch wide.  Yes, this guy is pretty tiny.  I wanted him to have the heavy build of a draft horse, so he’s pretty stocky.

I photographed him in a hurry on the day of our Christmas party, so the photos are not the greatest quality.  But here they are, anyway.

Thank you for looking. 🙂

 
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Posted by on January 10, 2016 in All Artwork, Sculpture & Mixed Media

 

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Big Ellie

You’ve met Little Ellie, now meet Big Ellie.  Larger, chunkier, and a little more flashy about her accessories, her ears a bit too large, her trunk a bit too long, Big Ellie is not to be outdone.  🙂

Big Ellie

-Measures approximately 7 inches long x 4 1/4 inches tall x 4 1/2 inches wide.

-Made with 17 gauge steel fencing wire (silver colored, which only shows in a couple of tiny areas…this was strictly the “skeleton” of the sculpture), 16 gauge dark annealed wire, 19 gauge dark annealed wire (I’m on a black wire kick, I guess! 🙂 ), and fine black wire for embellishment attachment and detail.  Her ears are a pair of large, heart-shaped earrings that I picked up recently, and her trunk is made with chain from the same necklace that I used for Little Ellie’s trunk.  Unlike Little Ellie, Big Ellie’s trunk swings freely so that you can move it around as you please.  In the photos, you can see that I had fun putting her trunk into different positions as I photographed her – it seems to alter her expressions.  Her tusks are made from a single hoop earring.  I only had the one earring (found in a lot of broken jewelry), but really liked the look of it.  For whatever reason, I decided to pull it sort of straight – I do a lot of random tinkering to see how a material holds up – and found that this earring was actually a hollow tube.  It twisted just so when I pulled it, and I liked the new shape of it.  I snipped it in half with my wire cutter, pinched the ends closed, and there you have it – tusks!  There is, as usual with my elephant sculptures, a bit of chain for the tuft of the tail.  And finally, Big Ellie is wearing a pretty green and pink flower on her head, which is a pin that I wired into place to doll her up a little.

Thank you for looking. 🙂

 
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Posted by on October 2, 2015 in All Artwork, Sculpture & Mixed Media

 

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Little Ellie

I’m on a bit of a roll posting my sculptures, so here’s another.  Little Ellie was my second elephant sculpture, after making one as a commission for a friend.  There is a third elephant sculpture that I’ll also be posting soon. 🙂

I call her Little Ellie because the third elephant I’ll be posting is larger, and thus, she is Big Ellie.  I thought I’d share the little one first.  She’s on the petite side, and her butterfly-wing ears seem to make her kind of girlish.

Little Ellie

-Measures 5 inches long x 3 inches tall x 2 1/4 inches wide.

-Made with 16 gauge dark annealed wire, 19 gauge dark annealed wire, and black fine wire for attaching embellishments and adding details.  The ears are made of a butterfly pendant that I clipped into two pieces.  The trunk is a heavy, thick chain from a necklace.  It is naturally a pretty stiff chain, so I curled it up to give Little Ellie a cheerful, happy pose.  Once happy with the placement of the trunk, I used fine wire and attached it to the head so it stays put.  The tusks are made from a single hoop earring which I broke into two pieces.  There is a bit of chain on her tail, as well.

Thank you for looking. 🙂

 
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Posted by on September 27, 2015 in All Artwork, Sculpture & Mixed Media

 

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