Tuesday, 16 September 2014

sam and the fly

I've had the pleasure lately to be working with a really talented young man called Sam. I work with Sam as an art tutor and we do wire work together. He lives in supported accommodation and my Junkyard Dog sculptures inspired his house manager to contact me in the hopes that Sam would like to try something new.

I love working with Sam. He has a great work ethic and gets so intense when he concentrates.

This is the first project we worked on together. I've named it Louie the Fly after the famous Mortein commercial.

Sam had never worked with wire before, so this is a little wonky in some ways, but beautiful in the randomness of the wire work.

Louie has been filled with broken and discarded items, mostly plastic - junk really... kind of perfect for a fly.

Basically I showed Sam how to work with the wire, we made the body of the fly first. At that stage it was just a roundish shape made of wire. I looked at it, thought about what it could be and formed the frame for the head. From there I did the structural/shape and Sam did the fine wire weaving work.

The current project is looking amazing.

Sometimes I love my job!


PS. Do you have any idea how hard it is to take photos of wire sculptures?

Thursday, 11 September 2014

an outdoor firebox

This last weekend I did a little work in the garden.

Actually, I've been doing a little work in the garden for a couple of weeks now. The emphasis is on little... I've had a friend helping me and he's been doing the heavy lifting. I've had him help me move some plants, put in new plants and prepare the vegetable patch for planting.

We have a cement slab in our yard which used to hold a water tank many years before we bought the place. Its just a useless concrete slab in between the house and the Hill Hoist (Australian icon, aka clothes line) which tends to collect 'stuff'. You know the stuff I mean, the kind of stuff you think "I can't be bothered taking that back to the right shed now, I'll just leave it here..."

When we first moved here I asked Wayne to build a trellis there to block the view of the clothes line and water tanks. I had visions that the clematis and banksia roses I planted in front of it covering the trellis and providing a gorgeous screen.

Here are a couple of photos of the trellis from two years ago. First a view of from the clothes line towards the house.

Looking towards the corner of the casita - you can see the clothes line and one of the water tanks.

And looking back towards the house from the other side. The plants are more than double in size since then, but still nowhere near the gorgeous screen I envisaged.

Here are some pics taken on the weekend of the same area. In this one you can see the clothesline behind the trellis. You'll also see the copper artwork I distressed to get the green patina. Its now garden art.

This spot is great for sitting and relaxing in the afternoons, once the sun heads down behind the trellis. You look over the middle paddock towards the hill, the dam and stable, back up the valley behind the house, and all the front yard. So, when Wayne decided to get rid of the big wood stove he had in the garage and asked if I wanted it as a garden ornament, I jumped at it.  Its perfect for my little outdoor relaxing area.

What would an outdoor post from me be without horses and a gratuitous poodle in the shot?

The wood stove is heavy and very rusty. Just gorgeous. Wayne removed the door and side panels so you can see the rusty metal sides in all their glory. I put some potting mix in the box itself and put in some succulents. They'll get full morning sun there but shade in the afternoon. I added some of my favourite pots: a once red bucket, a once red biscuit tin and an old jam pan. They're filled with succulents as well. Only succulents will survive that position in pots in summer as it gets full sun almost all day long.

While I was at potting up succulents, I did a few more. Here's another favourite of mine. The old mop bucket!

Oh boy, I used to hate those things when I was growing up.

I love spring. I love looking at the garden and seeing the flowers bloom and what new flowers pop up that I don't remember putting in.


Friday, 5 September 2014

the tooth fairy isn't happy

Update on the tooth saga.

I still have it.

Ok - here's the story.

Since I last posted I've continued to pop pills on a regular basis. Sometimes I'd not take them for a while cause I'd be thinking 'Hey, I feel ok. I'm just imagining it. I don't have a problem with my tooth'. Then the pain would hit and I'd be popping pills like Ben Johnson popping steroids.

I made an appointment with the dentist on Thursday at 2.15pm. I don't think I really wanted to go... I've been working up a pretty good dentist phobia. I wrote 2.45pm in my diary and as a result, I missed my appointment.

Luckily (or unluckily?) they managed to squeeze me in today.

Lucky I guess, cause it woke me up again last night. Ouch.

The dentist took another xray. All looked fine. Still.

The dentist discussed options... pull out the tooth. Its right at the back, not really necessary for eating as its not meeting the top tooth or something like that, do a root canal, but then maybe its not worth it, the tooth seems a bit loose... maybe its unstable... maybe we could try removing the filling, packing it with antibiotic & sedative and see how it goes. If it works, great. I go back in and have a real filling put in. If it doesn't work, I go in and either have the tooth pulled or extend the problem by having a root canal.

Uhmmm. One quick procedure, one (smaller) bill. One long procedure, one (huge) bill, followed up with another procedure and another (huger) bill.

Tough decision.

If I'm going to crown (and bridge) anything, I think I'll go for the upper, further forward gap in my mouth.

The dentist gave me an injection, waited a while, then started drilling. He successfully ducked my punch. Good reflexes. I guess dentist's need those.

He gave me another injection and waited some more. Filling removed and replaced by balm for angry teeth.

All was going well. The numbness wore off. I felt fine... for about four hours. Then the pain came back, like a long lost friend.

I now have a pain killer problem. I'm running out of them.

Dentures are looking pretty good right now. If they hurt you just take them out and plunk them in a glass of water on the bedside table.