Tag Archives: Lewis Art

Fun in My Art Room

Yesterday afternoon I finished digging out the iris from the backyard planter. (I still need to make sure the planter is completely cleaned out, add more potting mix and  replant some of the iris, but I declared victory for the day.)

I rewarded myself with some time in my art room.

I’m working on some Christmas presents for my good friends from Lunch Bunch. (Shhhhh!  It’s a secret!) The time flies by while I’m up there, thinking of my friends and trying to make something I hope they’ll enjoy. I have quite a few things to make, so I’m hoping I can sneak up there a lot in the coming weeks.

I also have some refurbishing to do on some of our yard art. Our ‘box turtle”

needs an eye re-glued, plus some touch up on peeling pain on his back.

 

I found some orange “neon” paint. I repaint the orange on both sides of the jack-o-lantern, hoping the paint will make him pop when headlights hit him next year.

 

We have an 8 foot tall (with stem and leaves) metal flower attached to a power pole in the back yard. Some wasps figured out a way to get between the metal of the flower and the plastic saucer type thing we glued to the center and covered with glass beads. We think our spraying has finally at least caused the wasps to relocate, if not die outright – so we’ll bring this into the shop. I’ll remove the center piece, clean everything up, caulk the center back on and replace the glass pieces that have fallen off.

I’ll work my way around the yard, repairing things as best I can. We’re also looking to repair some other critters still in the shop so that we can attach them to the ham radio tower extra length part we stood in concrete recently.

We have a few things in the shop that need to be repaired or finished that we can hang on here, plus critters we make in the future. This will be our “Critter Tree.” :0)

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Lewis Halloween Mailbox Decoration # 2

We took the Jack-O-Lantern down this morning and took it back to the shop. I’ll clean it carefully and then use some really bright, neon orange paint to see if I can get it to show up better at night when car lights hit it.

 

We put our ghost up for the rest of the month. This is the back of the piece.

 

This is the front. It’s funny, but this is one of our most simple pieces. It shows up at night better than anything we’ve made before or since. I love his happy expression. I hope he brings a smile or two.

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Mailbox Decoration – Jack-O-Lantern

We just put this jack-o-lantern mailbox decoration up. This is the back of the piece.

 

And this is the front. I wish he glowed in the dark…

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Scarecrow Mailbox Decoration

This is the back of the scarecrow mailbox decoration. You can see where I tried to blend in the mounting hardware tube into his legs and the straw coming out of his jeans.

 

This is the front. This piece was fun to paint, trying to make his overalls look like denim.

He definitely makes it look as if fall has arrived, although we’re having two weeks of temps into the 90s in the afternoon with strong sun. They’re saying that by the end of next week, we could actually see some more reasonable fall-like temperatures. We’re really ready.

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Mailbox Decoration

Yesterday we changed our mailbox decoration on the way to Lunch Bunch. This is Wyle E. Coyote paying Sonic the Hedgehog to strangle the Roadrunner. This is the back of the piece. My husband is pleased with this one because we managed to add a bit of 3-dimenionsal quality to it with the legs welded onto the main piece.

 

Here’s the front of it.

The school bus goes by our driveway on week days. I hope that the kids get a kick out of seeing what we put on the mailbox.

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Steam Bath

It’s the chicken and the egg question – we’re not sure if WE brought back the hot weather by putting this up on the mailbox on the 15th, or if it would have come anyway. If it’s our fault for the 95 degree weather plus a heat index making it feel like 106, we apologize. It’s always hot in Arkansas in the summer, and particularly in August. This year has been so wonky, though, with the grass staying green all summer, rather than turning brown and crunchy, that we got spoiled. It’s like a steam bath out there now.  This is the back of the piece. I tried to blend the support bar into his feet.

 

Here’s the front.  We thought this decoration wouldn’t be appropriate in that we’ve had so much rain, but that won’t be a problem much longer.

 

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And We Pronounce It Finished!

 

We just hung up the Sun/Moon Metal Wall Hanging, pronouncing it finally, “Finished.”

 

It’s about 4 feet across by 2-1/2 feet high. The moon is a separate piece.

We hung it in our office, over my computer area. I learned a lot doing this piece, and look forward to doing more air brush work.

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Tasmanian Devil Mailbox Decoration

We put up another of our favorite cartoon characters – The Tasmanian Devil – on the mailbox today. This is the back of the piece.

 

And this is the front. We hope he gives people a smirk or laugh as they drive by.

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3rd Time?

the afterlife of billy fingers via cathy ruggiero

Now my husband wants me to add more yellow to the sun/moon piece with the air brush.

I’ve quit worrying now about whether its ‘good’ or not, and am concentrating on having fun with the air brush, plus making something my husband is happy with. I’m really enjoying the experimenting with a totally new kind of painting. We’ve ordered a set of air brush paint, empty bottles for each color we use, plus an adapter and hose so we can hook it to the air compressor in the shop, rather than having to use a can.

So far, we’re learning to clean the system properly, keep it going, and adjust the spray a bit. I’m hoping to find a video on YouTube so I can watch someone who knows what he/she is doing.

Learning a new technique opens up a whole new world of possibilities, making your mind race and your mouth water.

So, maybe the third time is the charm on the sun/moon metal wall hanging and maybe it isn’t. We’re having fun in the trying.

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Finished for the 2nd Time…

This shows you the sun/moon metal wall hanging after I masked parts in order to use the air brush for shading.

 

Tracing paper is off. Finishing touches are ready to be done.

 

Offset ‘moon’ ready for mounting on the piece.

 

The piece is now drying. I’ll take a final pic when this is up on the wall in the office.

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2nd Try on Sun/Moon Wall Hanging

123RF

Once I got over the initial disappointment at my efforts on the sun/moon wall hanging painting, I got excited about a do-over, trying to make it come out more as I had hoped.

 

This is the picture and design my husband found on the net. There is a LOT of shading involved, and I chose the wrong color for the background initially.  Yesterday we got another sample can mixed at Yeagers and I got busy.

 

This is the initial try. I didn’t like the background color of the sun, and my husband didn’t like the shading. Other than that…. :0)

I got more of a coppery brown color for the sun this time. Yesterday I scraped off a  LOT of the paint and all of the accent lines. I then rubbed in the new background color with a cloth. Today I’ll use a sponge on the sun to get rid of the remaining ‘lines.’

When that is done, I’m going to mask off a lot of the painting and try using an air brush to do the shading.

It’s fun to learn a new technique. I’ve never done air brushing. I’ve seen some beautiful work that can be done with one by someone who knows what he/she is doing. I’m just hoping for a more subtle shading.

Wish me luck!

 

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2nd Try

I finished painting this and wasn’t satisfied. It just didn’t turn out the way I had hoped. My husband tactfully agreed. Today I started scraping off a bunch of the paint. I’m going to repaint the two parts with background paint the best I can. Then we decided, as we were discussing what might be done, that I might try to use a used air brush setup I got a long time ago but have never used.

So, I’ll finish scraping paint, redo the background colors with sponge or cloth, and then we’ll see what we can do with the air brush.

Maybe we can do a better job this time.

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Sun/Moon Wall Hanging is Drying

I finished the wall hanging last night. We’re letting it dry, and then we’ll bring it in and hang it up and see what we think. You can’t really see the 3-dimensional aspect of the moon in this picture. I hope it shows up better when the piece is up on the wall. Will take another pic later.

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Wyle E. Coyote Mailbox Decoration

This is the back of the piece.

 

And this is the front. He’s about 2 feet tall.

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Metal Wall Hanging Progress

I finished the basic color blocking yesterday and then started on the LOTS of shading needed on the piece.  The size is about 3 feet across by 2+ feet from top to bottom.

 

Here it is with the moon attached. I did a lot more shading this afternoon, but will wait until tomorrow to take more pictures.

I took Amber out to the shop with me, but she was finding a LOT to eat that she shouldn’t. I spent more time taking things out of her mouth and trying to find ‘safe’ things she could chew on, but she wouldn’t settle. I ended up taking her back to the porch and then going back out to do some work on the piece.

I have no confidence that what I’m doing is going to work. I’ll just keep on keepin’ on and hope for the best.

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New Metal Piece

This is the latest piece we’re trying to make in the shop.

My husband has done his part, cutting out the pieces (he cut the moon out separately so that it could be mounted above the rest, making a bit of a 3-D effect), and adding a hanger.

Now it’s my turn. I’m intimidated by this one, because of all the shading. I’m concentrating on doing just the color blocking right now, and then will take a lot of time trying to study the piece on my computer for the intricate shading.

I just hope I can do a reasonable job on it.

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New Work

Dodecapod.Com

 

My husband found this design on the net and we both liked it. I found the source, but not the name of the artist.  We both liked it a lot and we’re in the process of trying to make it.

My husband used the CNC table and the computerized torch to cut this out. The piece is about 3-1/2 feet wide and about 2 feet from top to bottom.  The piece is so much work for the torch that it overheated. We had to stop the cutting process and wait for the torch to cool down, and then start it up again, fingers crossed it would remember where it was in the design. Thankfully, it did. My husband still ended up having to cut out parts of it by hand.

He made the blue moon separately so that we could mount it on a spacer. We’ll attach it to the main piece through the back with a screw to give the piece more of a 3-dimensional quality.

I marked the metal yesterday.

If we can get our a/c fixed today, I’ll start the painting soon.

This will be a really difficult piece to paint. There is a LOT of great shading on the piece, making the sun look 3-D, for example, and the rays look curled up and wavy. I’ll give it my best shot.

This is the first piece we’ve seen in quite a while that got us excited about cutting out and making something.  If it turns out all right, we plan to hang it on the wall in our office.

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Snoopy and Woodstock Mailbox Decoration

We love Snoopy and Woodstock, and it makes me smile each time I see them getting ready to celebrate their patriotism.

 

The sun went behind a cloud when I took a picture of the front of the piece.

Happy Independence Day!

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Roadrunner on Mailbox

Wyle E. Coyote and the Roadrunner cartoons are some of our all-time favorites. The Roadrunner never runs out of energy, can run really fast and stop on a dime, and never lets poor Wyle win.

 

This is the back of the piece. Beep! Beep!

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Yosemite Sam Mailbox Decoration

On the way to town this morning, we put up Yosemite Sam, one of our favorite cartoon characters. This is the back of the piece.

 

This is the front. He makes us smile.

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Godzilla on Maibox

This is the back of the piece. You can see where I had to paint the bottom of the piece on the mounting bar.

 

Here’s the front. He doesn’t show up far down the road as some of our pieces do, but my husband is pleased with him. I’m relieved that he’s happy. We love Godzilla movies. They’re so awful! :0)

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Godzilla

We put Godzilla up on the mailbox yesterday, but I forgot to take my camera to take pics. We went to town three times yesterday, trying to get everything done we needed to before my husband had his second cataract surgery this morning.  Simply too busy.

This morning we were up at 5am in order to be at the hospital on time for the surgery. Needless to say, I was barely functional at that hour, and so didn’t remember to take the camera.

Maybe I’ll remember tomorrow. This was a difficult one to paint. My husband says its one of his favorites, so I’m happy he’s pleased with our efforts. :0)

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The Fedex Man

Fedex

Last evening our Fedex man brought us a delivery.

He jumped out of the truck with a serious look on his face. He looked at me and said, “You should sell this stuff.”  When I looked a bit blank, he added, “My wife and I just joined an artists group and they’re going to have shows. You and your husband should bring your artwork and sell it. I bet it would sell really well.”

 

Well, THAT made our day! :0)

We discovered that his wife is into interior design and furniture, and apparently has a real gift for decorating. But then he started talking about our critters again. I told him that it was harder and harder to find scrap metal. We used to be able to go to a junk yard and prowl around, gathering things that looked interesting. We did that at auto salvage places, too. Now, due to liability issues, no one will let you prowl around anymore. Sometimes we luck into things, but it really has limited our critter making.

He told us he would be on the lookout for interesting scraps and would bring them to us when he found them.

Isn’t he wonderful?

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Sylvester and Tweetie Pie Mailbox Decoration

We took advantage of the drier weather today to change our mailbox decoration to Sylvester & Tweetie Pie. This is the back of the piece.

 

This is the front.  We’re satisfied with this piece because you can see what it is from fairly far down the road, and we did 3-dimensional whiskers on Sylvester and some hair on Tweetie Pie.

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Easter Rabbit Mailbox Decoration

This is the back of the Easter rabbit and egg mailbox decoration. I tried to blend the support bar into his feet.

 

This is the front. I used Snow-Tex on the tail to give it more texture.

The ladies who deliver the mail drove up the driveway yesterday, instead of leaving the mail in the mailbox because we got a package we had to sign for. My husband came in, grinning. He said the ladies both told him how much they enjoyed ‘our artwork.’

ClipArtKid

 

Happy Easter!

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“I’m Popeye the Sailor Man…”

We put Popeye up on the mailbox this morning. He makes us smile, and we hope he makes others smile, too.

 

He’s a tall piece (about 2-1/2 feet tall) and would bend in a good wind if we didn’t put a bunch of braces on him. Here is the back of the piece. You can see where the rods are, and how I tried to blend them into the figure.

Now I’ve got the Popeye song dancing around in my head…

Here are some lyrics so YOU’RE singing, too!  (Version One)

“I’m Popeye the sailor man
I’m Popeye the sailor man
I’m strong to the fin-ich
Cause I eats me spin-ach
I’m Popeye the sailor man.

I’m one tough Gazookus
Which hates all Palookas
What ain’t on the up and square.
I biffs ’em and buffs ’em
And always out roughs ’em
But none of ’em gets nowhere.

If anyone dares to risk my Fisk,
It’s Boff and it’s Wham, understand?
So keep Good Be-hav-or
That’s your one life saver
With Popeye the Sailor Man.

I’m Popeye the sailor man
I’m Popeye the sailor man
I’m strong to the fin-ich
Cause I eats me spin-ach
I’m Popeye the sailor man.”


“I’m Popeye the sailor man     (version two)
I live in a garbage can.
I eats all the worms
And spits out the germs
I’m Popeye the sailor man.

I’m Popeye the sailor man
I live in a frying pan
I turn up the heat
And burn up my feet
I’m Popeye the sailor man

I’m Popeye the sailor man
I’ve never stepped foot on the land
I like to go swimmin’
With them mermaid women
And float on my back to get tan.”

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The Best Laid Plans…

I told you a couple of weeks or so ago that I’ve been working upstairs on some Christmas presents I want to give friends and relatives. As some things do, I didn’t like the result. I tried to get the paint off, but it’s going to be quite a job. I’ll do it a bit at a time.

Meanwhile, I ordered more of the main part of the presents, and I’ll start again, using a totally different technique this time.

Wish me luck?

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Carla’s Bowl is Finished!

I glued the felt on the bottom of the bowl this morning so it won’t scratch furniture.

 

I also did the final clean up of the glass.

 

Carla gave me the prettiest gift at Christmas. It’s a glass bowl, turned over on its top, in a base. You open it up, put some wonderful fragrance oil drops in it. and plug it in. The bowl itself is white on white, with white mosaic type shapes above the background. As it heats up, the whole bowl changes colors as you watch. The fragrance makes the whole room smell good. I put it on my buffet, so the wonderful smell spreads into the dining area, kitchen, hallway, pantry, and utility room. She said she ‘thought of me when she saw it.’

This one doesn’t change colors, or do any tricks, but it’s made with love and  I hope she likes it.

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Mosaic Bowl is Almost Finished!

Yesterday morning I grouted the bowl. It’s a bit like making mud pies, in that you put a huge glop of grout on the side, then try to mash it in-between the tiles. Then you add another glop. There’s some water involved, vinyl gloves, sponges, cloths, etc. You cover the bowl generously, then start using the sponge to remove the excess. You want to end up with the space covered as evenly as possible with none left on the actual tiles.

 

I did this as much as possible yesterday. I’ll do a bit more clean up today, then paint on the sealer, and see if I can add just a bit of glitter. I’ll also cut a round piece of felt to glue on the bottom so that it won’t scratch furniture.  I’ll take pics again when it’s finished.

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St Patrick’s Day Mailbox Decoration

We put this up this morning to be ready for St. Patrick’s Day. We used to have just a bare shamrock piece cut out, but I like this one better This is the back of the piece. You can see where I tried to blend in the mounting bar into the painting.

 

And this is the front of the piece.

“St. Patrick’s Day is an enchanted time – a day to begin transforming winter’s dreams into summer’s magic.”  ~Adrienne Cook

 

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Current Mosaic Piece in Progress

I’m making this for a friend. What I’m picturing is that it will be a nice place to put a tea light and that it will glow through the pieces of glass.

All of the pieces of tile are now glued onto the glass. (This is the bowl upside-down. I’m planning to spread grout on the bottom so I can ‘sign’ it, using a baby trowel type tool.)

The next step is fun, labor-intensive, and quite messy – like playing in the mud or messing with play dough or finger painting.

I put grout all over the piece, making sure I get it all around all the pieces of glass tiles as evenly as possible. When that is done, I use warm water and a sponge, or cloth, or both, to wipe the piece to get all of the excess grout off the glass. This takes a lot of time, effort, and lots of warm, clean water. I have to get it completely cleaned up before the grout dries or it will be like trying to scrape cement off.

I’ll take pics when the grout is on and the piece cleaned up.

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