Archive for May, 2013

Thursday, May 30th, 2013

umbrella tree

Little Limbs

Tuesday, May 28th, 2013

little limbs

Tree and Stump

Friday, May 24th, 2013

Wednesday, May 22nd, 2013


happily sauntering across our yard a school of quails, so cute. I tried to catch a photo but they were so face and I could not get close enough, for fear of frightening them, they hoped up the 8 foot fence and disappeared ๐Ÿ™

How to make a papier mache Norwhal whale

Monday, May 20th, 2013

Or, the things you do for your niece’s homework assignment…

First gather your supplies: flour, white glue, newspaper, tin foil, masking tape, card board or white tag board, celluclay, piece of heavy wire. Also have a picture of a Norwhal whale ready to reference as needed.

In a small pan, pour some water and put on the stove top burner with a low flame, heat the water and slowy add the amount of flour you guess you will need for the project. for this project I used about a cup of water and about a cup of flour, adding the flour and whisking to be rid of any lumps. When your paste is a smooth and not watery consistency take it off the burner and put into a bowl where you will be dipping your newspaper strips into. save left over paste in a plastic container and put into the fridge for later projects.

Tear your newspaper into strips ( I prefer smaller strips to bigger or wider strips)

Make your small batch of pulp ahead of time and have a spatula or butter knife handy for applying. I use celluclay rather than making pulp from scratch usually because I am lazy that way. Celluclay can be purchased at your local craft store and in comes in both white and grey. I prefer the grey because it seems to be more sticky. Experiment for your own preference.

Determine how big you want your whale and form the simple shape using aluminum foil. Insert a piece of wire (I used coat hanger wire) where the cork screw sword like nose will be, mold the foil around it, put it in deep so you won’t risk it falling off.

Cut out left and right fins and tail fins and tape to your foil form. Cover the entire form with masking tape because the paper strips will adhere easier to the tape than to the foil. It is also the first step in smoothing out the natural bumps and valleys which inherently occur with tin foil.

Dip your newspaper strips into the paste, pull the strips between two fingers to take off excessive amounts and layer the strips across the entire form three times with even applications varying the direction. At this point one could continue on or the piece could be put into the oven to dry at 200 degrees or set outside in the sun until it dries. Or continue on with the application of pulp which is what I did because of the simplicity of the form.

At this point the form still has a lumpy body with dents and crevices from the foil. Now take a knife and smooth in the uneven areas. Take outside till it is completely dry and then begin the second phase for its completion.

After you have covered the entire body with pulp and let dry, use some string or clay wrapped around the wire to create a corkscrew look. I used apoxie sculpt, an air dry clay.

your whale is ready to be lightly sanded, primed and painted.

My gigantic romaine

Sunday, May 19th, 2013

thrills ๐Ÿ˜€

Sweet surprise!

Tuesday, May 14th, 2013

the past three mornings when I have watered my chinese lantern plant a little bird flies out. So this morning I took a look inside.

birdie eggs

thrills! A nest! They are about the size of jelly beans. ๐Ÿ˜€

Happy Mother’s Day to Mommas Everywhere

Sunday, May 12th, 2013

Delma Joy Temple: Bio Mom

Cecilia Ramirez: Mom

Mother in law: June Anders with her Momma, “Toots”

Open Studios

Sunday, May 5th, 2013

Yesterday I made visit to a couple of open studios in Ojai. One of which was Dianne Bennett.

Dianne’s colorful paintings and assemblages are pure eye candy.

“In 2008 I began a series of retablos dedicated to species of birds, trees and plants
whose existence is threatened by loss of habitat and climate change.

The retablos are painted on salvaged metal, old advertising and traffic signs. Many of the series are on portions
of an old metal sign that had been used to advertise a housing development (on what had once been a meadow)
in Ojai of the 1960รขโ‚ฌโ„ขs.”

Serious whimsey on various surfaces, made for a striking display in her meandering back yard. Paintings interact with plants, cacti and Ojai cobble. Chartreuse, fusia, cobalt blue, lavendar, canary yellow, and OOOrange, be still my eyes!

Valerie Buess

Sunday, May 5th, 2013

Loving work by Valerie Buess