Sunday, July 25, 2010

Kitsch Attack!

Every now and then, one must do some kitsch! I did some things I call Fairy Houses a couple of years ago, and I still get requests for them, so last week I decided to make a few more. They are very easy but are time-consuming to decorate. I worked at the 15 of them all one day, and got rather bored! As I was doing them, their price, in my head, kept going up!

Once they were in the kiln I got some pink styrofoam, the high-density kind, and Super Helper and I spent a morning cutting, gluing and spray-painting to make a display thingie for the Houses. It turned out fairly good, and I am impressed by how easy it is to make stuff out of styrofoam. A whole new world of display opportunities!

Take a look at the finished Houses, displayed at the Carp Farmers' Market yesterday:

Two questions I got about them: first, why didn't the doors open?, to which I replied that Fairies are magical and don't need the doors to open; and, secondly, why the ladders? I was stuck on the ladders question until it came to me: the Fairies have lots of friends, and they need the ladders!

I put some grasses and branches behind the styro thing to give more of a garden 'feel'. It worked pretty well, and I sold quite a few of the houses. The picture doesn't look very good, but remember, this is just a small corner of a cramped 8' by 19' booth.

The Market overall was pretty good this week. Several of the produce vendors sold out and I did well. It has been a slow Market so far this year, so this is encouraging. Hot, though. It was well over 30C in my booth and the humidity..... oy.

Friday, July 9, 2010

The Last Chicken Died At Noon

Sad, but true.

I decided last fall not to get any more egg-laying chickens until I had a better chicken house for them. Between the raccoons, which just chewed through the wooden walls (or door) to get in, and the squirrels which ate more chicken feed than the chickens, it just wasn't worth the wear and tear on either me or the chickens. By this spring there was only one chicken left. All the rest basically died of old age. I'd come in in the morning and one would be flat on the ground and that would be that. Very considerate of them, I thought, to expire so simply.

Anyway, the last chicken soon became Chicken and I let her run around outside the chicken yard. She had a fine time pecking at bugs and eating bird seed and became quite good friends with Kip the dog and Pepper the cat. It wasn't unusual for all three of them to be settled down on the front porch looking out at the world. And like the other pets, Chicken soon got into the habit of wandering into the Studio. I didn't worry about it because the concrete floor was easy to clean up, although.I did draw the line at her coming into the house. I told my friends and anyone else who came by that she was retired.

So on Tuesday, which was the almost-hottest day of the summer so far, Chicken came into the Studio and poked around as usual, but I looked at her and thought she didn't look as bright-eyed as she should have. She drank some of the dog's water, clucked a few times, and went back outside.

At noon I found her lying in her usual spot on the porch, but no longer watching the world.

I'm thinking a small series of tiles, about a Little Red Hen, will be a good way to remember my Last Chicken.