Who is Sue and what is Suelandia?

Sunday, July 17, 2011

The sweating like a pig days of summer

Hey people.  Do pigs even sweat?  I have no idea but this weather makes me feel like a potbellied, grimy, stained wifebeater wearing, trailer house dwelling southern guy, possibly chomping a cigar.  Not even sure why-- it just makes me feel dirty and gross, and this is the image that comes to mind.  And you have to admit, it kind of goes with the pig metaphor.

Here's what Dan rigged-up for me on our deck.  He says I can just dunk myself in it, or better yet stand in it and hose myself off when I just can't take the heat anymore.  He explained all this with sort of a devilish, pervy look on his face, but look-- he went to the trouble of finding a tarp to cover it with so gross things wouldn't get in the water (besides me), so really despite images flashing through his male brain that reality has no hope of matching, this was really sweet of him.   

I think he got the idea after seeing how disgusting I was when I returned from trailwork last night.  I spent all day at the trail clearing a spectator viewing area.  This involved mostly yanking out stubborn buckthorn & sweating my ass off.  Me and the other guys helping were soaked and dirt-caked by the end of the day.  Two guys did double-takes checking out my coal miner face on the drive home.  I actually had to hose off, fully clothed, before going inside.

It's baby deer time in Suelandia again.  Check this out--- 4 baby spotties!!  Apparently the moms sort of team-up and let all the kids play together.  Cows do this-- actually assign "nursemaid cows" to be baby sitters for the entire herd's calves so the moms can graze and nap.  All herd animals have formed societies as part of their survival strategies, and that involves cooperating etc.  People don't like to think of this because then we eat them.  But it is what it is.  They have families and relationships etc too.  And all babies (esp furry ones to me) are cute right? 

Meanwhile, work-wise, my deadline looms.  I have a big show at Season's in Hudson that opens Sept. 2nd.  I have so much to get done!  But I'm really determined that every piece for this show be one step above past work.  I may not have tons and tons of pieces, but I want them all to represent the best work I can do.

Here's the first thing I finished-- it's a chandelier.  I can imagine the cool shadows all those leaves will throw.  Right now it's hanging outside so it can rust more, and the breeze can fool with the fish line a bit so I can make sure it's sturdy enough.  Makes a heck of a pretty wind chime too.

Then a few days ago I started another little horse sculpture.  I had a new idea this time around for how to cover the framework.  But here's the frame. (Sorry it's a little blurry.)

I'm using paper-- tiny torn pieces, set in place with liquid starch, that I'll lacquer once enough layers have been built up.  I may or may not cover that with a network of threads when I'm finished.  The position/attitude I wanted to capture is of a young horse that has spotted something on the ground it isn't sure of.  He's sort of in pre-spooked mode-- fully alert, and at that split second when they decide whether to shy away or not-- front legs braced, haunches dropped a bit, back legs ready to spring backwards/to the side (more accurately-- preparing to un-weight his front end to dance away).  He's not sure yet, if this is a threat or not.  Intensely curious. 

So far I really like this process-- the way the frame still shows through of the metalwork, the coverage, the texture, and especially the way I'm able to finesse the details like the nostrils and the area around the eyes. 

For the final layer I may use another kind of handmade, possibly japanese paper instead of the inexpensive stuff I've been using, but I do really like how it reacts to the starch so far.  We'll see in a couple days.

I think I'll make a couple more horses, maybe two more like this (different poses) and a slightly larger one in blue, dappled like the one from the last show.  For some reason I'm picturing it dozing on it's feet.  I have so many ideas for this show and it will be a race with the clock to get them all completed, as usual!

This is going to be a tough week.  I'm going to just keep working, moving forward, and maybe dunking in and out of our fancy new pool.


b_elliott said...

OMG! Once again you've astonished me with your creativity. LOVE LOVE LOVE the work in this post. Damn, Sue you're good!

Maery Rose said...

I agree with Beth. What a great place to be, having so many ideas.

pseudosu said...

Thanks so much! I admire your work and eye so much it's a huge compliment coming from you. :)

Thanks! I thought the horse might appeal to you. Yeah, better place than "oh crap-- what will I make???!" Which is where I was about a month ago. for some reason the deadline gets the ideas cooking I guess.

Jill said...

Beautiful! Both pieces are fantastic. Love the line on the neck of the horse and the ears.

irishk said...

Wow Sue! The technique on the horse is even cooler than I had imagined ~ what an awesome idea. The leaf chime/chandelier is so stunning, although the work involved is mind boggling. Perseverance is a wonderful attribute:-) Really great stuff!

strugglingwriter said...

That horse is great. The things you create are so nice.