Sunday, August 1, 2010

New Show at The Seen

Hey! Another show coming up soon at the Seen Gallery in Decatur. I'll have lots of new pieces that are sadder and crustier than ever before! Travis Smith is also showing his work, which is a lot of fun collage pieces with robots and things. Please come out to the Seen and feed our egos on the 21st.

Monday, July 5, 2010

The Set-Up

This one really reminds me of a picture from an Aesop's Fable. I wanted to have that kind of look to it, with a ominous tone. The fox, who is typically seen as a sly and devious character, is having some ethical dilemmas while the little mouse on his shoulder sways him toward the more sinister option. The set of keys and the bundle of bones are about to be utilized somehow, or maybe they already have.
I enjoy the challenge of pulling a viewer into a story already begun and letting them fill in the blanks. These two guys were pretty fun to make, especially the expressions. I love how the fox's face came out, I think it really shows some internal conflict. One thing I notice while looking back at this thing now is that his face looks more like my dog than a real fox. Oh well.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Kind, In Your Own Way

This watchful old owl is the caretaker for these smaller birds. He looks on with a judgmental gaze as they eat from the broken pocketwatch he has brought for them.

Sometimes it's smart to question the wisdom of your mentors.

Here are some recovered images from my last post. The top one was during a group show at the Woodruff Art Center, and shows the contents of the cart a little bit better. The lower two are obviously in my studio, and show some great angles of her back and side.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Going Home

This was a piece that sold over the Halloween show, but I wanted to post it and talk about it a little bit. It is a departure from the last posting because, with that one, I knew the concept and the look I wanted to achieve from start to finish. But with this rabbit, I wasn't quite sure what she was going to look like until I was almost done. I knew I liked this quizzical pose, with the body turned sort of awkwardly, but as I was working one night, the clay was a little too wet to support the weight I was adding on top, and she started to sag downward. Hence the big butt and pregnant belly, which I had no idea that she would have, but once I saw it, that became a great element to her story. (More the belly than the butt.) After that her story took shape around this element. I decided she needed a strong, erect posture, hinting towards some pride and determination. The ear pose reflects this as well. Her eyes convey nothing of her inward emotions, just looking back at her wagon to make sure everything is as it should be.
Now, the wagon... I wasn't sure what she should be pulling until after she was completely done, but I settled on this as a way to convey her fortitude and emotional capacity. The wagon itself is a slapped together vessel with weird 'wooden' slats of all shapes and sizes, and rickety wheels helping it to teeter along. But the contents are all manner of little treasures I had collected while growing up, and I borrowed a few from friends who had done the same thing as kids. This was stuff like part of a honeycomb, a skeleton key to nothing, a cartoon character plastic ring, a broken light bulb, etc. To me, these things say, yes, this rabbit is a little crazy, but she also, for whatever reason, holds these things very dear and has plans for them in her (and the baby's) future.
I wish I had a few more detail shots to show you inside the wagon and some other views of momma rabbit, but this one is no longer mine so you'll just have to settle for my description.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

They'll Be Lining Up

Here finally, is the finished sad dog piece. This guy went through a number of changes before I settled on what you see here. First was a minor catastrophe when I took him out of the kiln for what I thought would be the last time, and I looked on in horror as his "skin" was popping off in large flecks before my eyes. So the really crusty, kind of amazing surface treatment you see on this guy now is a result of me frantically rubbing off all the slip that was going to shed, and hitting the bare spots with an iron oxide stain, and throwing him back into the kiln one day before he was supposed to be shown. Luckily, that all worked out and he serendipitously looks better than I had hoped!
The second change was a departure from my original idea, which was to have malicious little puppies chewing on his house while he sat stoically. So he was displayed a few times on a large wooden platform with these puppies rolling around and bits of glass and "wood" from the house around them. But it was just too much and the puppies were goofy looking. Finally I decided that his pained expression, sturdy posture, and the decay of the house told the same story without the pups. I have a picture from one of those early showings so I'll post that and see what you think, but I'm afraid I won't be able to do much about it if you think I'm wrong since those pups are now somewhere in the garbage.

And here's the back view. Here you can really see the straining of the house on his muscles and skin, and the broken roof and beams. This is where the puppies were chewing and playing, but it just looked silly.