Sunday, September 30, 2007

Mermaid Commercial

Check out this Mermaid video for Levi's Jeans.


Hi! We've been back since Tuesday and have worked ourselves into bent, hallowed eyed zombies. So today, we took a break, actually I couldn't get up. Hawaii was amazing, the show was outstanding, friends showed up and we ate loads of sushi. I'm happy in Hawaii. Maybe its my islander heritage (mama's filipino) but I'm one content girl when I'm standing at the waters edge, soaking up all the blue of the sea, the wind in my face carrying the scent of plumerias, coconuts and wild ginger.
Not to say I'm not happy now, because I am. I can remember a time when I was sad and lonesome, so much so that a nice lady sitting next to me at wedding reception told me "Your misery will end and you will be happy." Now that was about six years ago, it took another year before her prediction came true. I finally got the courage to actually look at my life for what it was and stop pretending all was great. That was hard. I was used to being sad, I thought it was my disposition to be eternally depressed. My family has carried sadness like a veil ever since my older brother disappeared. We didn't talk about it, we just lived our lives, secretive and crisp to one another, not really knowing or caring what was going on each others lives. That changed when Azalea was born, our family came together, we let our sadness go. So now I'm happier than I've ever been, working with my family, doing what I love. Sometimes a part of me can't believe my good fortune and wonders when it will end, but then I remember that I'm not that same girl, I'm a mama and a wife and I look out for others, not just myself.
One day I will build a retreat, where all my buddies and favorite people can come and stay with me. I think it will be in Hawaii, because I love kona coffee, the smell of coconuts and sea turtles. The atmosphere lends itself to creativity (I painted so much during the show, which would usually be hard to concentrate with people watching) and to relaxing while walking along the shore collecting treasures. Well, the shows in 11 days and I have much to do!

Mandrake Card

Hello! Here is a sneak preview of one of the Oracle cards. This one symbolizes magic and enchantment, so if this one's drawn it means breakthroughs or revelations. The mandrake plant (which is what this is,only anthrophomorhphized) was thought its roots resembled a person (they actually do look very much like a withered doll) and had powers to cure maladies and to cause visions. The plant is toxic and this poison in small amounts could cause hallucinations...or magic, if your a wizard in medieval europe. Andrew and I have slaved away at this project, researching symbols and folklore. It has been wonderful. We've learned so much about how tarot or runes work and how it really isn't some mysterious power, just a tool to guide you to the answers you already know, but maybe haven't examined closely. I like the idea. The process is fun too, after researching symbols we decide color palettes and Andrew weaves paper to form backgrounds, adding loads of layers, then I paint the figures,then the painting gets more layers and is sealed. They are quite luminous in person. Well, I don't think I will have the whole deck of 24 done by Faery Con, so we will make prints of the finished ones,or greeting cards (you know, to wish someone an enchanting day!).

Thursday, September 20, 2007


Spent the day getting ready for the show in Hawaii. I should pack some more, but I have this weird urge to make a set of alpabet dice so I can play crossword games on the plane. This happens frequently, I suddenly must make some random project before I leave, working well into the night to finish, only to discover I need another three hours. What does this impracticality say about me? Why am I rolling out polymer like its the most important thing in the world? I should be packing up necklaces, or these freshly painted pewter pieces. I think they look so good! Folks in Hawaii, come see them first! Well, I have to finish my dice, Im sure they will provide hours of entertainment. So, if your in Waikiki this weekend, stop by and say hello, maybe play a game or two!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

needful things

Hello! Busy day for us. We got up early to get some business done then after loads of java Andrew and I headed off for an antique store we spotted on the way to the taxidermy store in Hendersonville. Why were we headed to a taxidermy shop? For eyes, epoxy putty and resin! Strange all the wonderous products you can find for such a weird hobby. I think taidermy animals are creepy. Like mummies. So we saw this store called 'Needful Things' and I was intriguied. Asheville has a knack for inappropriate names for stores, like 'Bearly Edible' for a cafe or 'Yu Can Cut It' for a janitorial supply shop (what?). We had no choice but to find out why an antique store would be named after the devils shop in the Stephen King book 'Needful Things'. In that story everything was cursed and caused the victim to become wary and Gollum-like, treasuring the trinkets they found. I found these cute wooden animals, a dome and this set of jewels in a cool box. I fought Andrew for an owl and a crow, but he won, using trickery. I also found a neat chimenea made out of terracotta and shaped oddly like a face. thankfully, I don't think any of my goods are cursed, although I have been staring fondly at the animals for a long time. I leave for Hawaii on thursday (yay!) and I'm gathering up stuff to take. I'm notorious for over packing and agonizing over every object, considering how useful it will be, how much it weighs, will I cry if its lost, will I want it if I don't pack it,which we all know I WILL. So I pack like I'm leaving for a month. My sis gets so exasperated, she can pack a tiny back pack and live out of it for months (no exaggeration here) where as I get all uncomfortable just thinking about it. I don't like being unprepared. I like having my supplies near at hand, you never know when you might get the urge to,say, sculpt a new piece, or paint a watercolor. So I better get crackin', so much to pack! I'm looking forward to the show (looking forward to shopping the show-I am a bead junkie). Ok good night!

Friday, September 14, 2007

New gold vermeil pieces.

Colored resin coated beads.

Yesterday Anne and Lynn drove up from Atlanta for a visit. We prepared a lasagne dinner and Andrew made a custard with a strawberry, peach and lavender sauce (so yummy!). Anne, Lynn, Tony and Lisa came by for lunch and to teach us some new techniques in resin that Anne had learned. We applied colored resins to the surface of beads, which gave them an enameled look. I had a great time chatting while we tried out different surfaces. It was so much fun brainstorming! Later in the evening Andrew and I made dinner with asparagus, blackeyed peas, onions, mushrooms, chicken or fish, all neatly tucked into a parchement envelope and baked till steamed. We followed that with key lime pie and good conversation. I can't wait to use the new techniques to add colors to my beads. I'm not thinking of doing loads for production, but maybe a few to bring to the shows. Speaking of shows, the Hawaii Show is coming up next week! I hope to have some painted by then.
We recieved our new vermeil beads, I think they would look really nice with swarovsky crystals.
Hopefully, I'll have a chance to make some samples soon. Tomorrow is a casting day to make some Luna Fairy pendants, I will post pics of them in shibuichi. Have a good night!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The Dreaded Chore

Azalea at the chocolate counter at Dean and Deluca, Charlotte, NC.

New supplies gotten cheap at Artists and Craftsmen Supply (who are sadly going out of business).

Root babies embedded in resin and some new shapes with mica and foil mixed in the resin.

New doll parts for fun.

What a week! No blogging for me, I was too busy enjoying the company of my dear friend Jessica Wiesel. She left yesterday, so I was sad and miserable for most of the day, I made little hands for my doll to cheer myself up. We had so much fun! We went to Charlotte earlier in the week to take Tony Blackwell to the airport (for the Tucson Show). We visited Dean and Deluca (purveyors of fine and fancy food that no one has ever heard of), Trader Joes (which i love with all my heart and wish one would come to Asheville) and lastly to the Artists and Craftsmen Supply. The shop was closing its doors forever and selling the merchandise at half off, so of course we stocked up on paints and clay and paper. It was fairly intense, all the concentration focused on the most important supplies to get (because I couldn't get it all). We walked around our charming downtown and ate at Mamacitas and the Chocolate Fetish (the basil and pistachio truffle is superb). We devised secret plans, drew pictures of forgotten beasts, ate funky cheeses and taught Azalea songs to sing. I miss her!
Today I said 'good morning' to my brother who arrived late last night after a harrowing day of travel and we planned our day over coffee. We all decided it was time to do The Dreaded Chore. The most put off, least desirable, un-fun thing to do...clean the space known as the garage (aka the workshop). This behemoth of a task includes unpacking boxes that haven't seen daylight in 6 years, giving away loads of baby clothes, unearthing things we thought long lost. Tony and Lisa came over to lend a hand and curb our pack rat sensibilities. I have too much stuff. I need to purge all the junk and make it easy to work. We finish up tomorrow, then I tackle my studio, the second clutter magnet. I have to make it nice, Anne Choi and her friend Lynn are coming to Asheville for a visit! Yay! I'm beat, but I'm happy, our workspace is looking great and more friends are coming.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Weasel is here!

Yay! Jessica Wiesel (aka Weasel) is visiting for a week! She arrived yesterday afternoon, so we made a nice dinner of a dish I call Bacon Rice (which includes bacon, caramelized onions, roasted peppers, portabella mushrooms an basil...simple and delicious) and a salad of heirloom tomatoes. We spent the rest of the evening catching up and telling stories, a nice way to spend Andrew's last evening with us before heading back to NY. Today we took it pretty easy, I gave Jess a quick wax working lesson and she picked it up remarkably fast. See the antlers she made for her dollhouse animal trophies? So good! I will show finished pieces soon. The top picture is of my new garden castle in progress, its almost done! I can't wait to cast it. It feels good to relax and get back to work chatting with my best buddy after an action packed weekend with my folks. I think the whole goal of the weekend was to spoil Azalea rotten! We threw her another party, with all her friends and the whole family, balloons, cake, presents and an exciting trip to Fun Depot. Everyone had a good time. I think I'm still tired. Well, I'm going to get back to my castle!