Thursday, January 27, 2011

Fall Shows and Rush,..Part One!

From about August through then end of October I was without a computer except for my cell, hence the late postings here. During that time, I was in a mad rush to make pieces for Halloween and Vine in California in September, and for the September SpookyTime Jingles Soiree in N.J.
During those final summer days, I could be found sanding, carving, and dremmeling up a storm, and I lived in my dust mask and apron! I worked around the clock except for sleep, and my hands had the small cuts, occasional burns, and calluses on top of callusses to prove it! I worked every waking hour on multiple large pieces. I made mostly moons, devils, and cats, turning them into lamps, and lived on my big back deck, happily trashing it in the sun with music blaring!

At night I would bring all the pieces inside, and this is what a small section of my studio area looked like,...
And on the deck, here is where I sit and dremmel and carve, small table was covered in mache slop, dust, and trashed and discarded parts from cutting up plastic and metal pieces and cobbling things together,...

My sister Dusti helped me in so many ways, many a day, and we would laugh so hard and have so much fun working together. We have our own language and sayings, and can crack each other up with the mention of one phrase. How lucky am I to have a sister and best friend rolled up in one? I would never have made it all without her! And, it wouldn't have been half as fun. She would run out and get things I needed, sand, sand, and sand some more, and together we would cobble together lamps faster than you can say "Shazam!!"

Here Dusti is on task,..

Sisters, Dusti had just arrived unexpectedly in the heat of the last week before the show,...

Here is my hand, mere days before time to ship, painting a large moon,..

My good friend, work out partner, and neighbor Teresa helped us pack and ship the 9 large boxes going to California! I never would have gotten in packed in time without her! (Which was literally by the skin of my teeth!)

When my flight landed in California, Dani Nelson, Wendy Leaumont, and Pat Dean picked me up in the rental and we crossed the Golden Gate and headed to the sweet little town of Petaluma. I met Pat for the first time,...and just adored her right away! The four of us had a whirliwind few days where we only stopped it seems, to crash and crash hard! I kept waking up everyday at 4am, as I was still on EST time. Somehow, shame on me, I hardly took any pictures except with my phone, and most weren't so great.

Below, one of my two tables,...
I could not send any large and heavy props, so I sent a light weight urn and we picked a craggy branch and plastered it in there to hang ornaments, was hilarious as Wendy Pat and I drove through the country jumping out to break branches off,..then racing with GPS to a Home Depot for plaster that was no longer there,....madness! Somehow we pulled it all off. I believe Wendy and Danny actually anchored the branch in the plaster while I had run back to the cottage to do some quick repairs. In the end it all panned out,...see pics below,...

Here I am with Wendy, who was the best chauffer ever, and kept us all in Starbucks and laughs,..
Thanks Wendy for all your help and moral support! Isn't she adorable in her Halloween ensemble? I love this Louisiana girl!

Here is a detailed shot of one of the many lamps I sold.....

Moons peeking out,..
One of my Warty Jacks,..I sold each lantern with a light strand and flicker bulb and a crow perched on top!
Lots of color and various sizes,...

Dani was a genius in helping me set up and she even brought flowers to dress up the big moon table,..
I was next to Sweet B's incredible table, see one of her lolli's poking out....
I never even had time to look around before the people swarmed us,...

Three lovely ladies who are all friends together and are Halloween folk art lovers and collectors came to the show and are seen below! Celeste and I, and further down, Janean and Ramona,...
All fabulous gals who it was great to finally meet in person!
With Dani and Wendy,...

See Sweet B's table beyond mine!

I sold almost every single lamp I took, so I know what to make more of for next year, now!

We had a fantastic time, the show was a huge success, I got to meet so many artists and collectors! We had a fantastic after party at the local pumpkin farm, where we had dinner, and got a tour of the awesome haunt after! Wendy, William Bezek, and myself below all aglow in the blacklight!

More blacklight fun!!

and the next day we hit the antique outdoor event in Petaluma, and then still fit in a trip to the Redwoods! The hike through the redwoods was the most amazing part of the whole trip. I hope to return to this amazing forest again,...

I wish I had taken more photos of the show itself,... looking back now it all went by in a crazed flash! A trip I will never forget!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

News To Smile About!
Exciting news! It's official, I have signed with ESC Trading Company licensing them to reproduce my work! The link to view their site is posted to the top right of my blog. (I am fairly sure my bio won't be listed on the site until my designs have been reproduced and hit the showrooms and catalogue in 2012.)

I will be designing new pieces for them year round for all the major holidays, and hope that this will be a fun new way to push myself creatively, too. The first deadline for samples coming up soon is for all holidays except Halloween and Christmas, so I am currently working on a series of rabbit head candy containers, ducklings and rabbits sitting atop eggs, and some moons for children's rooms, maybe a few Valentine pieces for good measure! After that it will be onto Halloween creations both for the next ESC deadline and for The National Halloween Convention with SpookyTime Jingles, both end of April/early May! Throw in a few commissions I have already taken and its no rest for the wicked here! In addition, I am traveling to Atlanta once monthly for my sister and I's other business and art venture. I will be posting a previously saved post I have been working on about that next. Thank you all for stopping by and I hope you will check back soon for works in progress posts and more updates!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Devils On My Mind,...
I have started back to the sculpting process and also thinking in terms of where I would like go this year, and looking back to a few of my favorite designs and pieces from last year,...
this Giant warty Jack,..

A few devil lamps,...
another shot of one of my favorite large Warty Jack O Lanterns,..

A wicked little spiral horned devil,..

Here he is brightly lit,..
and one of my huge Moon Floor Candelabra Lamps,..

This year, I am going to make lots of things,...but something I just can't quit thinking about is my huge Devil Floor Lamp. I may do a pair, one a Pan like Devil, and another traditonal Red Devil, spiral horns and wicked toothy Grins but the heads will be almost two feet tall,...and will be made to fit on the top of the antique floor lamps like in the above photo,..
and I am going to do more wicked pieces such as skulls, devil-horned skulls and jacks and many more Wicked Jacks! Oooh I can't wait!!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

New pieces for 2011!
Happy New Year! I have started this one out with a bang! I have been working with my sister making art mirrors and furniture for our business Harlan Mckenna Designs, and have been taking a once a month trip down to Atlanta to Scott's Market for that. Right after our first trip in November, I had a little accident on a woods trek and landed wrong on a steep jump and completely tore my ACL. Meaning, I now have only three ligaments in that knee instead of four. Of course I was immediately scheduled for surgery which would have been first thing in the morning, this day the 13th, had I not called today to cancel! Seems pretty crazy to cut myself up with holes drilled in both leg bones and a cadaver ligament, bone grafts and screws placed in when I have been able to run several miles, weight train as usual, and just about everything else I usually do with no pain or problems. The first month it did hurt and of course I did limp about the first couple of weeks. Believe you me, I took the injury very seriously and still do. I would not subject myself to a life of pain or a sedentary life, but I have really, miraculously, and perhaps abnormally, had little trouble with this knee. So, I can atleast continue strengthening it a few more months and see where I am then. I really have way too many irons in the fire to go through several weeks on crutches, with serious rehab time driving to and fro the Physical Therapist, and then full 12-18 months before I have a "normal" knee. It really seems "normal" to me now, barely two months since the injury! I am thrilled!
Here I am at our last atlanta trip,...displaying a moon I took for kicks in front of some of the pieces my sister and I make.
And for the STJ update today,..I pulled out some Valentine WIPS and finished them off, cute little ornies trimmed in feathers, them a warm and cozy look! Maybe all the recent snow here caused me to add the trims,....
Here is a moon shaker on STJ, actually, he is a moon on a stick as I usually do not make these hollow. He has different ribbons dangling from his vintage tinker toy wooden stick handle and a few bells and rusty stars.,..
Back to the biggest Valentine heart,..

A snowflake,...And Praise be to the Gods I can once again revel in a Halloween color palette! I really do not enjoy any other one, truth be told.

This black cat has a paper Dresden black cat embellishment on his hat from a trip to The Tinsel Trading Company in N.Y. back in October,...time to use all these little bits of this and that I have collected,...and a hand sewn crepe collar in purple orange and black!
Here, kitty kitty!!
Here are the pair together,..
I painted in some teeth,..
That's all for now! I have about four other posts saved in this blog that I need to finish and publish. Time has really gotten away from me and I hope to post more here soon.
Thanks for stopping by!!