Thursday, February 28, 2008

I'm always taken aback - a constant state for me - when someone tells me they downloaded and framed one of my images. Images I hope to sell. Geezemcrow. I'm not talking Thomas Kincaide -"the painter of light" (hmm, I thought that was caravaggio, or vermeer or somebody) or even PIno - no I'm talking chump change -- enough for validation -- enough for printer ink, for God's sake.

I even have an embedded watermark - i must be doing something wrong with, because it has never appeared anyway.

The worst is when someone just rips it off as their own. I believe one of my images is used as the avatar for someone in India who goes by the name santa banta. This is hardly surprising, when i was in Indonesia, i was amazed to learn that the telephone was invented by an Indonesian, as was radio and television. More rants later...

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

The Sun Worshiper

Well, I finished Clytie for now. I wanted a litho feel to the way the print looked and I got it. I really like the viewer's eye to do the blending. For me i like the old stone litho look - where colors are layered. Nowadays, the rage is to get a glass smooth blend. Maybe, I'm just lazy or don't know how to do it. No, I really prefer the 1920's.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

westminster reminds me

i am currently working on a concept that has been heretofore out of reach - i have done several version of clytie over the years and never happy. If i get this one done i will post it. Incidentally, I am thrilled to announce that a relative of Buckley's has won best terrier at Westminster Kennel Club. My Dad was a beagler so I am happy for Uno - who, like his name was #1. I am sure that Dad and his old beagle - Diane's Bess of Shanbrook(a Christmas present when I was 5) are reunited in the happy hunting ground - Nary a rabbit will they chase because Dad never killed one and bess was never taught to kill. She was kept purely as a musical instrument to augment a good days' tromp through the bracken and brush - a romantic gesture between the Voice of Bugle Ann and "Ol' Blue." I can attest that when she died "she died so hard, it shook the ground in my back yard." And if he had one,he would have "dug her grave with a silver spade, and lowered her down with a golden chain."

Monday, February 11, 2008

The Rabbits

Please visit the website and blog of Margaret Dyer. She is a great artist who has a wonderful sense of line and color.

I wrote this poem and illustrated it but was not very good at arranging the elements on the page. Margaret walked me through indesign- yikes and then helped me to get it on the page in a readable manner.

I am submitting it to any children's publications I can think of with the view to getting it published.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Buckley, natal and ascendant

This is Buckley atop his two brothers. Even at birth he was going for the sunshine. Never content with the bottom position. It is an original oil - details on my store.

Back to Buck and the adventure of the silk ribbon. I left my doings on the coffee table - all sorted out. I turned on the news to see if, indeed, man had bitten dog, and toddled away to brew a strengthening cup of coffee or 6. I failed to realize the significance of Buck remaining at the coffee table.

Buckley has a cheerful and hopeful nature, and where hope of getting some foodstuff or other in his belly, a tenacity unparalleled. I don't know whether other sealyham terriers are made of the stuff that Buckley is. He is a
descendant of a breed invented by a Captain Edwardes, a sporting gentleman and owner of the Sealyham estate in Pembrokeshire, Wales.

Captain Edwardes purpose in conjuring up this wonderful breed was to have a compact terrier, white in color (so as to be easily distinguished from a fox or badger in the excitement of the hunt.) He wanted a fearless, tenacious dog who would be used to engage fox, otter and badger in their dens until such time that the Edwardes bird could blast away.

To achieve this temperament, a sealy pup was pitted against a pole cat when the pup was 10 months old. If he was fearful or reluctant to engage the polecat and dispatch him, the pup was shot. I must insert here that Buck would have been in doggy heaven tout suite if the old Captain was still around to wage war on anything furred and fanged.

Maybe circumstances in Buck's well ordered life have not triggered the determined hunter lurking in the gene pool. Yes, I have seen steely determination, but that is more food related than not. He occasionally has a good natured go at the cat but she is entirely humorless and soon gives him to know that she is not to be disturbed as she sits in mystic contemplation on the kitchen window sill. Squirrels are legion in our backyard. Buck takes no notice.

He is hell on moles. Winkling them out of their tunnels in Savannah's sandy soil, is the work of a moment for him. He soon has the yard looking like the battle of Verdun and eventually produces the corpse of Mr. Mole for my approval. I never approve. It's the little hands that get me. Of course, I always think of "The Wind In The Willows", so there you are. Who, in the context of Mr. Mole, would not be saddened?

Another component in Captain Edwardes' test tube, was the ability to hunt with a pack and get along with other dogs. He also had to be amenable to humans and obey commands. Here we are in dicey realms with Buck. He does get along with everyone and mostly every thing. He is friendliness writ large. Sadly, he's big on bon homme, but listening and obeying are low on his list.

He and I went through obedience classes together. I really tried. Buck simply loved meeting all the dogs. He leapt in the car with great glee every Wednesday. He was the smallest dog in class but by far, the most active. His class was comprised of five labs, two mastifs, two standard poodles and two cockers. He could hardly contain his pleasure at all the different smells his new friends gave off. Smelling faces and fanny's was why he thought we were all assembled. Sitting, staying, dropping, coming to his owner on command, were all mere distractions to the real business at hand. As a team we got a C. We repeated the class and got C-.

My fault more then his, I suppose. At any rate, we are far from ready to take intermediate obedience. Buck is happiest setting his own schedule. He checks the laundry room two or three times a day. Before, I knew his fiendish proclivities, I never gave a thought to leaving the laundry basket on the floor next to the washer. But an incident occured, the memory of which, still makes me blush. The cable man arrived to work on some problem or other with the TV connection.

Buck had been going through the laundry looking for lady's underwear. Upon hearing a strange male voice he anticipated meeting a new friend. But why forgo one pleasure for another. He emerged with a pair of my (sad to say) large white cotton undies hanging rakishly from the side of his mouth and sat in his best obedience school manner at the man's feet. Henceforth, the laundry basket is out of his reach. This does not prevent him living in hope.

Another favorite pursuit is to check on the regularity of the cat. This disgusting habit has forced me to move the kitty litter in some out of the way place known but to the cat and God. it is practically impossible to anticipate what he will get into. Once when he was a pup, a teenagish pup, he jumped onto the open oven door while my back was turned. i was doing the dishes and turned around to find that Buck had nimbly stripped the insulation strip from around the oven glass window. He was busily dealing with it like a strand of spaghetti. After screaming, which caused him to drop the strip and look at me like I was revealing a side of myself he had never seen, I was able to stuff it back and never have to tell my husband.

He has been in the dishwasher twice, so why i thought some sewing project was safe, speaks to my delusion that Buckley has matured into a quiet companion. In the twinkling of an eye - or at least in the span of time it takes to brew a pot of coffee, Buck had seized all. I could just hear him say in doggy speak -"oh, pooh! no food!" He tore into the skeins of silk and the ribbons. I threw all the chewed on things away and am still awaiting the emergence of a particularly lovely lavender and green bias silk ribbon. Not of course that i could salvage it. No just because I know he swallowed it when I screamed (again, and oft). A week has gone by and i assume the ribbon has passed without complication. Buck has never skipped a beat. What with checking the laundry room and searching for cat doings, and of course, the mole problems, he keeps himself busy.