Saturday, October 31, 2009

Sometimes, often in October, more on weekends than weekdays, i feel like a gerbil trapped in a man's body.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

pearl pod ring

Over a year past due, and millions of dollars over-budget, the pearl pod ring is now a reality. I wanted this to match the pod pendant and earrings as close as possible. It took coming up with several new techniques, and a few molds to get to where I wanted to be. The overall look is about what I imagined.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

onyx pod earrings

Onyx pod earrings are done now. The naked stones had been sitting at my computer desk, staring at me for some time. It is nice to have an actual socket to poke them into. The earrings turned out very close to what I had initially imagined. I had originally intended for the upper part to have a larger loop, but became concerned about structural problems and the ever-present weight issue with earrings. I estimated they would be just over 3 grams when finished, they came in under that at 2.6 grams, which is better than expected.

I was also concerned about being able to clean up the sprue connection. (That is the stick of metal attached to the earring once it has been cast.) The sprue was connected on the left side where the earring begins to loop. Using a couple of specialized hammer setting attachments, I was able to duplicate the texture of the metal enough so it does not look like a patch job.

The onyx bullets taper from the very top, so the silver setting has a grip on the stone. This satisfied my 'never rely on glue to hold a stone in place' policy.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

whisper of the heart

Watched Whisper of the Heart (Mimi wo sumaseba) this evening.

I have watched more than my share of movies targeting a young audience, but this movie was the first I can recall that dealt seriously and accurately with the creative process. It is a gentle, moderately paced story about first love, and first honest looks at oneself.

a woolf's thoughts on dostoevsky

"The novels of Dostoevsky are seething whirlpools, gyrating sandstorms, waterspouts which hiss and boil and suck us in. They are composed purely and wholly of the stuff of the soul. Against our wills we are drawn in, whirled round, blinded, suffocated, and at the same time filled with a giddy rapture. Out of Shakespeare there is no more exciting reading."

From the essay 'The Russian Point of View' by Virginia Woolf (The Common Reader)

Monday, October 26, 2009

framing a better tomorrow through social change

I convinced the Eugene Public Library to acknowledge the existence in Robert Walser's book, Jakob Von Gunten. They have not yet purchased the book, nor have they promised to, nor are they likely to do so, but they have acknowledged in their database that the book exists. This is my greatest, most profound effect on society to date. I feel more powerful than I have ever felt before.


"One learns very little here, there is a shortage of teachers, and none of us boys of the Institute Benjamenta will come to anything, that is to say, we shall all be something very small and subordinate later in life. The instruction we enjoy consists mainly in impressing patience and obedience upon ourselves, two qualities that promise little success, or none at all."

from 'Jakob Von Gunten' by Robert Walser

Sunday, October 25, 2009

embracing chaos

I spent the better part of a pointless Friday lamenting flaws in a sterling silver jewelry pour.
(Several days are spent producing the wax models, then the wax is replaced with molten silver, thus the term 'lost wax' casting.)

This reluctance to 'accept' - the inability to follow the logical path from where I am, to where I want to be - is possibly my most obvious character flaw. With this work it is difficult at times to discern between success and failure. Relinquishing control and letting the work 'happen' is the most difficult thing I have ever attempted. Each time I over-estimate my control over the metal, it makes a complete fool of me.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

sheets of empty canvas
untouched sheets of clay
were laid spread out before me

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

i found something

A rhythm.

That is what is lost so easily in the shop. Too many directions and papers, and need five of this and five of that - leering and pulling the strength from my limbs.

So I toss stems and pieces, collect at least three types of wax that attract and repulse each other, draw a hot blade over the surface - the wax pours warm - time disappears, all is OK.

Friday, October 2, 2009

dialog on the mind of lynch

A: So...   wait,...   does John Merrick go to the doctor's house before or after he was kidnapped?

M: Before,... I think... I don't remember... I don't think it would have mattered. Maybe Lynch is less interested in telling a story from start to finish than he is at showing these scenes that he has sketched out in his mind. With Inland Empire he finally chooses to do what he does best: reality, fantasy, perspective, past, present, future, curve back on each other as he lays out these individual 'mind scenes', manipulating the audience, allowing the viewer to connect the reading a blog.

Thursday, October 1, 2009


Helen tried to conceal her strain at keeping pace as we walked down the river path. To slow to a more manageable pace, I concentrated on the rhythmic crunch of our footsteps on the path's layer of wood chips.

"I broke my arm playing with my father - twice - in the same place," she said, using her finger to gesture where, and at what angle the breaks had occurred, "we were really poor, and the farm was too far from the hospital. The first time my father braced my arm himself.'

"That must have really hurt," unable to come up with anything less obvious, or more comforting to say.

"It did," she said, "but that was over fifty years ago. You didn't complain about that kinda thing back then. Times were hard, and daddy had a lot on his mind with the farm."

Looking ahead, I could see our larger group ahead on the footpath.

"I really want you and your wife to come over for dinner as soon as the kitchen has been painted," she said, "Do you like baked chicken? I would like you to come see my...", she paused in mid-sentence when she noticed the group approaching us. She resumed an earlier conversation we were having with the larger group, "...yes, I hope they keep this side of the river up, now that they have fixed it," pointing with a tired finger at the recently mowed lawn.


The Anatomy of Desire
the Architects of Fear
Sketches For My Sweetheart - The Drunk