Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Show Time

It's show time, or at least preparing for my upcoming Shows has put me in full-on production and deadline mode. I've been reading about several other artist's who are in the same boat. In addition to a few upcoming shows, I also needed to fill wholesale orders (with packaging and shipping being my least favorite thing to do -glazing follows a close second!). I've been a little whiny-fussy-sassy because of this -and there is really no good reason for my disagreeable mood, so I forced myself to SNAP OUT OF IT! I think creative types are particularly susceptible to mood swings and my fussiness is the counterpart to bursts of my much needed inspiration. One of the best things I can do to snap out of a fussy mood (besides going out for Mexican Food) is to create something I WANT to create and not feel I HAVE to create. For my upcoming annual Show at Half Moon Creek Gallery I worked on one of the feature outdoor sculptures I've been thinking about for a while now... a Praying Mantis that will hold a small pot of flowers. Here are a couple of photos of Mr. Mantis in production. I used different size of rebar for his frame, because it's less expensive that the smooth cold rolled round stock I normally use. The sculpture is over 6' tall and his leg span is about 6' wide as well! I needed the hubby to help me get him out of the Shop and in the garden area to patina (I call it the weathering pen). We were laughing the whole time because we're not sure he is going to fit through the Gallery doors -ha! This is soooo me, I NEVER, EVER measure ANYTHING! Oh well. I'm not sure the finish I want to use, but I know I won't rust him. I'm thinking of trying a new patina that will give him a verdigris greenish finish but I need to talk to my friend Marieke about some cool metal patinas  she uses and has offered to share with me. This would be the perfect project to try those out on. I was also thinking of slumping some large, fused glass eyes and weld them in place with little brackets or clips. How cool would that look?! 

For Mr. Mantis, I was inspired by a lovely little book I bought in Seattle years ago called "Backyard Bugs" by Robin Kittrell Laughlin. This book also partly inspired the name for my Show at Half Moon Creek Gallery. "IMBY -In My Back Yard" opens Friday, June 5th in Anchorage at Half Moon Creek and will feature sculptural works for the home and garden. I'm going to start on a Grasshopper sculpture tomorrow that I did a little graphite drawing of. I was thinking, if the Praying Mantis doesn't fit through the Gallery doors I'll put him in the Annual Alaska Botanical Garden Fair Outdoor Art Show & Sale June 20th and 21st. There is a wonderful, special Gala event the Thursday prior to the Fair on June 18th, that features the Outdoor Art Ex
hibit, music in the garden and a outdoor buffet with a wine and beer bar. Usually 75% of the works in the Outdoor Art Exhibit sell the night of the Gala, with 50% of the proceeds benefiting the Garden and 50% to the artists. I volunteer coordinate the Outdoor Art Exhibit and LOVE this event
 because of the incredible venue and opportunity that artists have to create larger, outdoor works that are featured with a beautiful backdrop that only can be found at the Alaska Botanical Gardens.


Linda Starr said...

Oh I just love praying mantis, one of my favorite beneficial insects. He is going to be so cool - six feet tall, wow how wonderful. I once had a tour of second grade kids to my gardens and one of them pointed out a praying mantis crysalis to me and now I see them all the time. I hope I get up to Alaska one day to see some of your beautiful sculptures in person.

cookingwithgas said...

How wonderful! I wish I could see your work in person. I love the bugs and praying mantis are a favorite here. I will stop and watch one as long as they let me. Good luck with the show and I am waiting to see the grasshopper!

Dolores said...

Your description of the praying mantis made me really want to see it in person. Huge! I hope you can get a shot of it with someone standing next to it. Can't wait to see the grasshopper.

ang said...

weheeeeey, thats it, manti's coming to my place maybe??

cindy shake said...

Hi All! Thank you for your posts and kind words. I'm sooo glad to hear the Mr. Mantis isn't too creepy -I was a bit worried that folks wouldn't like the whole Bug thing -but you've reassured me. I like what Linda says about Praying Mantis being a "beneficial insect" that's a great way to put it. I'll start on the Grasshopper today BUT boy-oh-boy are my muscles sore today!!

I'll try and get a good picture -it's hard to get him all in one image without a cluttered background. That's another great thing about having work at the Botanical gArdens -the photo opportunities are excellent.

Ang -I'm not sure he's even going to fit in the truck (I'll need to borrow the middle son's open bed truck -I'll buy him some gas!) but I think a bit of your sunshine would make him very happy ;o))

Cynthia said...

I LOVE your super sized mantis - very cool! I wish I could see this one in person too... I just might have to check out Backyard Bugs - I have a thing for any kind of insect, must go back to my childhood or something.

I'm relieved my show date has arrived - I'm exhausted, but also very relaxed now. I'm working the show today, but feel like I can sit back and enjoy talking with people etc. vs. cramming to get things done. I plan to do nothing at all except enjoy my family on Sunday.

PS - I hate shipping and packaging items - that's when I wish I could hire someone.

Pots 'n Prims said...

Well, I just had to post & say that I thought I was the only potter in the world who hated to glaze! LoL Packaging & shipping is #1 least for me too ~ closed my online shopping site for that very reason! I got all moody & cranky at the thought of having to pack up an order (though I was grateful for the order)..
Keep on creatin'! :)