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Sunday, November 14, 2010

Placeholder Post. What?

I've not been feeling motivated to write anything lately.  It's been kinda depressing, actually, but at least I've managed to keep some projects in the air, even if I haven't been in any sort of mood to write about them.

The embroidery project – remember that one, from so long ago? – yeah,  it's been almost two years and I'm in the home stretch, finally.  Filling in the blue background and probably 3/4 done with that.  I need to get pictures up soon so you can see where I embroidered graph paper on the fabric.  I wanted a checkerboard pattern, I needed a guide, I stitched lines in place to use – and they are graph paper.

This may be a new level of obsessive for me.

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The painting project on the milk canister is finished, and I have photos for that as well, and simply need to upload them.

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And finally, since cold weather is coming and I want something that will keep me from getting cabin fever during the months spent indoors (well, okay, I should say "will permit me to focus my cabin fever maniacal leanings and use my powers for Good"), I've gotten back to my mosaic project. 

Remember that one? I'm casting stepping stones, planning to use them around an outdoor fire pit or something, with  each one looking as medieval and awesome as I can pull off given my level of expertise (low) and nitpicky tendencies (high).  The third stone didn't set right when I cast it – the mortar mix was off – and it broke into pieces when I tried to show it off at my kid's preschool. 

Yeah, that kinda sucked.

It's been probably two years, and now I'm getting around to the repair work that I knew I'd need to take care of eventually.  I get to basically play archeologist and lift each glass tile out of the stepping stone block, which involves chipping and scraping at the mortar around each and every one of those fiddly little pieces of hand-nipped glass, sharp edges and all.  Then I get to clean off the dust and bits of mortar still stuck to it, and place it on my work board as close to its original position as possible.

My work board is a cookie sheet with modeling clay rolled out on it to the exact size and shape of my stepping stone mold.  I can press stones into it, pull them out, rearrange, and all that good stuff as much as I want without having to worry about anything becoming permanent before I'm ready for it.  Once all the pieces are in place the way I want them, I lay strips of duct tape over the entire image and carefully peel it out of the clay.  After that it's just mix up some cement and go.  Once the stone has set for a couple of days, I can pull the duct tape off and the image stays where it belongs, and looks awesome.

The funniest part is that this is the exact method that the ancient Romans and such used – only the tools have been updated.  Instead of modeling clay they used quicklime, which is basically mortar that you deliberately mix wrong so it won't set; and instead of duct tape they used several layers of  fabric soaked in glue.  Apart from that, though, the process is identical.

And yes, I need to get some photos up of that, too.  Beloved child will be five in December and she's taken the most recent batch of pictures for me.  Did a good job, too!

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So yeah. I've been working a sucky day job, but I've also been pursuing some projects, which are the only things keeping me from going nuts at the day job.  I have pictures, I just don't have a lot of motivation to upload them right now.  Not to whine overmuch, but it is hard to muster up the energy when I'm not sure more than two people actually read these posts anyway.  If I don't have an audience, writing for myself is still valuable, but I don't need photo evidence of what I'm doing – I have my memory, for as long as that lasts.

2 comments:

  1. I'm still reading. You need to get yourself one of those Seasonal Affective Disorder lamps. I have one if you want to try it before you buy it. I can't be the only person who has noticed that you get into a funk this time of year. So, Eeyore, give me a call and I'll dig it out of the abyss for you.

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  2. I'm kind of in a funk year-round, Amy, but yes, anytime the days are shorter tends to be worse. If you want to loan me the lamp, that would be great! Do you use yours, or would you be willing to sell?

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