Tuesday, October 30, 2012

A Warrior in Green and a Thank You

I'd like to begin by saying Thank You to everyone who stopped by and commented on my post yesterday. That first post back with a figure was an important one for me and I am touched that you took the time to welcome me back and to encourage me to continue to paint. As a painter, a sense of shared community has come to mean a great deal to me.

Today I have another figure for my story "The Wyrm of Connemara". His name is Dez for my friend at The Hollywood Spy and his role in the story is Top Secret. I will reveal this much, he's on the Irish side of things.

He's from Dark Sword, is 32mm scale and was sculpted by Jeff Grace.

I remember my initial frustration with painting the folds on cloaks. The struggle to find the mid-point between the low points and the high points was a difficult thing for me.  I think I have finally achieved something I can be pleased with on this cloak.

I also tried to improve my freehand skills by painting a pattern on the hem. While not perfect, it is more complex than the last scrollwork I did.

Finally, this figure has a twin. I have painted this figure twice, one as you see here all light and bright and another, darker version.  I'll get around to posting his twin sometime in the future and will post them side-by-side.

Well folks it's Tuesday and in Bloggerland, that means a slow and quiet day. So kick back and enjoy the day. I know I will.

Monday, October 29, 2012

He's a Naz T. Habit

This is my fourth post for the month of October and I know that's a bit of overkill for me, but I thought I'd really push my blogging skills to the limit here.

This little guy is a 20mm sculpt from Dark Sword and he's going to be making an appearance along with a couple of his mates in my story "They Wyrm of Connemara"

His name is Naz T. Habit, a name loaned to me by The Laughing Ferret.  Now there's a reason for that, but as much as I'd like to share it with you, I can't because it's Top Secret.

The base won't be painted until I put him in the terrain I'm building. In the background you can see the mushrooms I sculpted and I think they'll go well with him.  I've also sculpted an oversized flower with a face to go into the scenery and I just need to paint it.

I've gotten 11 figures off the painting table this month and for me that's a record number. I'll be getting them posted as my life permits and will begin working in earnest on terrain shortly.

I'd like to take a moment and give my best wishes to those who are living on the East Coast of the United States as they prepare for Hurricane Sandy to make her arrival.  May you all be well as the storm passes.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

There and Back Again-A Drummers Tale

I've been asked a lot of questions about what it's like to play out and  I'm going to try to answer those questions.  But I can only do that from my perspective, that of a working drummer in a jazz band with no tales of drunken debauchery to tell.

I would like you all to get the image of rock band and a rock setting completely out of your head. Jazz clubs, jazz bands and jazz musicians are distinctly different from rock-the terms cannot be used interchangeably. I'm playing music written by people like Miles Davis and John ColtraneSidney Bechet and Charlie "Bird" Parker. This requires a particular set of skills and the music defines the experience. Click on the links and give some of these greats a listen so you can understand what I'm talking about.

So what's it like "out there"? It's not what most people think it is. As the drummer, I'm seated in the back, behind a row of cymbals and my view is the back of the horn players heads.  I don't see the audience, which is fine by me because I like to play with my head down and my eyes closed. Audience contact is something I'm not interested in. I'm interested in creating the musical bridge with the bass player that gives the other musicians the freedom to play what they want, whenever they want and to come back together in perfect time.

In a jazz club, the people are there to listen, they know the music and they want improvisation. They do not want a note for note rendition of something they heard on an album as that would be boring.  Also, it is not uncommon for other musicians to be in the audience and when a girl drummer blows into town more musicians have a way of turning up. Which leads to the best part of the night.

After the place closes all those musicians get together and play with no one but the bartender to listen. Even after 2 three hour sets, the energy is still there and the musical "conversation" that takes places is richer and more interesting than it was with a paying audience.  These other musicians also solve the pesky problem of "where are we going to sleep tonight".  They'll put you up for a few days and feed you as well.  Otherwise you're either sleeping in a van or your staying in a cheap roach motel, hardly a glamorous experience.

I want to address the question about what happens when a guy hits on me when I'm playing out. It rarely happens and for several reasons. I'm not personable when I'm playing, I don't accept drinks from men and I'm always within eyeshot of a bandmate.  Guys in a band don't like it when men approach their drummer and they don't really let people near me. I'm protected by four guys, I'm perfectly safe out there and the Hubby knows it.  My bandmates would never lay a hand on me as they respect me as a musician and I won't tolerate anything less than that.

Now enough of that business. You may have noticed that my blog has had a makeover. I'd like to thank my friend Dezz for making the banner and for helping me with the color scheme.

Next week I'll be back to posting figures as I've gotten 11 of them off the painting table and I'm keen to get them up here.

It's Sunday folks and that means the weekend isn't over yet. So if you haven't made merry, there's still time left for it.  Have yourselves a great day. I know I will.


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Late Nights And Bad Food

Being without income for the last year and a half has been difficult, but as Albert Einstein said "In adversity there is opportunity"  So in order to bring some income into the house I recently decided to start playing out again and am doing some pick up work with a jazz band.

It's only 3 nights a week and only till the end of the month. It involves a bit of travelling, but the money is good and so is the band.  The only negative aspects to playing out is setting up equipment and eating really bad road food. However, the change of pace is doing me some good and the sax player is fantastic. The Hubby is not with me as he can't travel anymore, but I do come home every other day.

I'll be around to make a few comments, then I've got to go as I'm at McDonalds eating really bad food.

Friday, October 5, 2012

At Peace While Painting

In this life it is rare to find such a thing as a peaceful place, a place where contentment rather than happiness holds sway.  Happy is a high emotion and can rarely be sustained for more than a few hours and as such is over rated. Contentment is the greater thing, for it is quieter and more constant a companion when it arrives.

Of late I have been at peace while painting and find myself content to live each moment as it occurs. And that is why I have been absent from blogger. For the hustle and bustle of posting, replying and commenting would steal time from me, time that I do not wish to part with as of yet.

Lost with the miniature, using the brush to tease out the character that lies within the sculpt is a fine thing indeed. This is a close-up of just one of the pieces I have completed in the last week. And I am not ready to post the figure just yet. Next week, perhaps.

Color aplenty remains in my gardens and while there are still pictures like this to take, I'll be there to take them.  I enjoy my time on blogger but right now, I'm enjoying my real life more.

I may post next week as I have completed figures and a product review to do. If my days remain as pleasant as they are right now, I won't be in next week.  But I'll be back, because nothing lasts forever.

All photographs are Digimarked. Please do not download my work without my permission.

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