Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Cadbury: A Bun on the Run

Cadbury climbed to the top floor of the castle, 
there's good view up there!

As you may or may not know, our friend Cadbury, a spotted bunny from Houston, Texas, was left at the vet while his people went on VACATION. He had been told it was a spa. And it seems it did have many spa-like qualities: nail care being one of them.  Well, Cadbury escaped from the vet, resourceful fellow that he is, and made his way to Houseful of Rabbits where he was able to visit with all ten of his lagomorphic buds. 

Tyler and Cadbury share some bun to bun boy time over a bowl of greens.

Not wanting to be selfish with the gift of his presence young Cadbury hopped on the train and has been visiting with Tyler and Sydney, also Spots, here in Santa Cruz, California. Our little town boasts many sights. We have a lovely coast line, there is a Boardwalk, and the redwoods are a hop away. After much discussion Cadbury and the Spots decided they were all mostly interested the Spots'  greens plantation. 

No title needed for this photo.....

Much time was spent admiring each lettuce, radicchio and frisee. Cadbury was particularly impressed that the Spots had found a spotted Romaine, Freckles, seemingly named after another spotted bunny blogger. All bunnies were puzzled about the inclusion of a red lettuce in the greens plantation until I gave them a little nibble and they declared it most desirable. Cadbury is off tonight, and the Spots already miss their spotty friend.  We are not sure where he is going, it could be here, or here or here. Where will he pop up next????

Monday, May 25, 2009

Monday Bunday

Tyler sees how the new domicile measures up.

Sydney shows off her contribution to the remodel; 
a rounded edge on the heart cut-out.

Curtain call.

Have a great week everybun.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Moku Hanga High School

What a lot of fun it has been teaching Moku Hanga to the 9th graders at Santa Cruz Waldorf High School. At SCWHS all the students have to take art so there is a broad range of skill and experience, but all have taken to the printmaking with a certain enthusiasm. 

I have been given NO money for supplies because there simply isn't any and so been raiding my own stash and buying blocks, paper, and ink. We were given new lino cutting tools, which only just work, because of the less than adequate tools I have done some carving on the students blocks, clearing large areas with my big chisel and cleaning up blocks here and there. As for brushes I am letting them use mine and some simply have to make do with painting brushes from the school. 
For printing we have 4 barens of varying degrees of quality which are shared about the tables. This can be a bit chaotic. I tried to introduce the use of a wooden spoon, but alas they would not accept this mode of printing despite my quite decent demonstration. 

When the class is going going full steam ahead, snippets of ambient conversations heard can sound something like this: 
Miss Moll Miss Moll I need help 
this one's a keeper
I can't do this
 where's the bamboo thingy? 

it's called a baren
 i know i like to call it the bamboo thingy
Miss Moll look at my print!
can I take this one home?

this looks crappy
 you're pressing way too hard 
you need to keep the baren flat
why can't i do this?
it takes some practice, like a sport

whoa, that's too much ink, it's not ketchup
this one looks pretty good
who has the brush for the black?
where's the baren? 

You get the idea. 

The hour and 50 minutes we have twice a week flashes by as I share in both the printing problems and the triumphs. The look on a teenagers face with when they pull their first print is priceless. And to hear at the end of the day the grouchiest of students saying that printing so much fun......I tell them, yes, you are right, printing is so much fun........ Did you clean up your table?

For me this is the best class that I have taught at the school, and the last since my position has been cut next year. 

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Happy 2nd Birthday to The Spots

It was the Tyler and Sydney's birthday yesterday. First we would like to thank the mom from My Little Furry Babes for sending a Fabulous two story castle cottage. I find it well made with nice thick cardboard that fits together using a sturdy design. The Spots think it is good for chewing and going in and out of. I don't have any good pictures of them in it yet. However I did get some of  a special breakfast salad party to which they invite, now that it is over, all their bloggy friends. Please join the celebration.

Tyler: Yumm, what have we here, I love Honeysuckles. Oh, hello Syd, I think we are having a salad party.
Sydney: Oh, here's a Borage flower. I think we have guests, will you greet while I continue to eat?
Tyler: Welcome, welcome, so happy to see you. Have a bump from me, Tyler. Please help yourself. There's two kinds of lettuce, Romaine and red and some edible Chrysanthemum greens from the garden.
Sydney: There's roses too!!!
Tyler: And oat groats!!!
Sydney: Does anyone mind if I step on the plate?

Sydney: I thought we had guests, I don't see anybun except you, Tyler.

Tyler: More for us. But it's not a party without some friends. 
Let's make some space at the dish.

Tyler: Crunch, munch, scrunch, I hope you got enough, I know I did.

Tyler: Just a few more bites.
Sydney: I think our guests are ready to go, they have many other parties to attend today.
Tyler: Oh, bye then, come by for salad anytime. If there  is any left after my sister and I have had at it you are welcome to it! Please accept this nose bump as a token of our esteem for you, our good friend!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

TigerTake 2

Actual colors on this one are less grey, it has a nice range of secondary and tertiary tones.

Had another go at the tiger after doing some cutting and tinkering. I'm getting closer, the tail needs a bit more work and the face too. I am doing two passes on the body to get the color and this seems to be compromising the registration on the eyes and elsewhere.  Tried some different background approaches, the colors are a bit brighter than what seems to showing on my screen....The more light parts on Mr. Tiger seems to be better and his foot no longer bothers me unless I fixate on it. I bring these proofs to my "client" today and see what he thinks. 

Trying just blue in the background with more lighter bits on the tiger

Once again the actual purple is brighter, the paint bottle said Magenta!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Monday Bunday and Haiku Festival

Today's Monday Bunday offering features Tyler looking for the exact perfect piece of hay.

I although I consider myself by no means a poet, on a whim I joined the Haiku Festival. See more here at About New York and here at Pink Purl.

This first one is about the foothills that overlook the farm where we have a cow share from which we get raw milk once a week. Recall that the form of Haiku is 5, 7, 5 syllables.

hills roll with green air
moist and warm, breathes me in
such joy to melt now

And here is one written by the Spots.

roses sweet and pink
spotted rabbits they do meet
happy rabbits BINK

Have a good Bunweek.

Tiger Proof

So impatient/eager was I to proof the tiger that I didn't even finish clearing the blocks properly. You can see some extra orange smudges here and there. There will be some wrestling with this one. The tail is not lining up right, whether I can change that or I have to carve new block(s), remains to be seen. 

And I am not happy with the black foot. It looked OK in the sketch, but now it sticks out like a sore thumb, I think it should have a similar treatment to the front grayish leg. And I'm not so sure about the ruff on the far side coming out of the black side of his face. The ruff may just have to go, although it makes it more graphically interesting, I think it is too visually confusing.

 And I'm not even quite happy with the colors, the tiger might be too orange and real tigers have a bit of white. I am wondering about the green foreground, some Japanese prints use a gorgeous red earth tone and I am wondering what the would look like....Wouldn't this all be easier if I would just learn Illustrator or PhotoShop? That's a long answer, perhaps another time. I am just a bit under the gun because this tiger is to be used as a label for Kung Fu Teas, a tea line marketed by my Ba Gua teacher. I don't want to be the one holding things up...........

Monday, May 04, 2009

Bunday Still Monday

As you may have surmised  from previous blurry photos I am very interested in movement. It is something that fascinates me, how people and animals move, how function creates form and vice versa,  you can tell so much just by watching movement and such like. I won't go on and on. Only to say we all love to see rabbits hop, really one can't get enough of it,  and Sydney  has provided me with some nice hopping pics.

The preparation, Sydney gathers her haunches, only her head moves a little bit.

Mid-spring, hind and fore paws are gathered in the middle of the bun trajectory.

 After the fore legs move forward they are still and hind legs catch up.

 In all movement there is stillness and in stillness there is movement 
and so it is with every bun. Tyler demonstrates stillness with movement.