Fast and arty in all directions

New Pastels!

Another crazy art week has passed with new items sprouting up everywhere plus several gatherings with beloved friends. Above is the pastel set I ordered from the UK. So looking forward to playing with these soon!!!

felted bear head ideas

I spent a day working on felting bear heads in an attempt to better grasp what I’m envisioning with the project. The first ones were all pretty simple but my brain doesn’t like just simple. I want to dive into the complexities. How are the eyes REALLY placed on the face? How big are the ears and in what relationship are they with the eyes and snout? What are the real head proportion and planes of the face? Those are the things my brain is thinking and I’m trying to portray it with the stabbed felt , but it’s not there yet. More effort and time is needed to really reach what I want before actually selling the little guys. I still have time on my side.

first feline head attempt

Felting quickly gave way to clay sculpture (Georgie’s B mix). I wanted to see how my hands would do compared to the stress of needle felting and less finger stabbing. I think I just have a huge yearning for sculpture in some form or another. Clay might be the medium I’ve been really needing back in my life. The only problem is where to do it. My default location is the dining room table, which again makes the point of needing a true studio space out side the home. The above cat head was the first attempt without any muses, drawings or other visual aids. It turned out to look more Egyptian. Below is a first round with trying to find a cheetah in the clay. It does look cat like, but could also look like an otter or something else.

second cat/cheetah head attempt.

Now I’ve added in more photos for reference and cheetah head #2 is still not there and needs more work time. Hopefully this week I can sit down with all the cat heads and figure them out more.

cheetah profile?
cheetah frontal
Sheep head comfort zone

Since I was feeling a bit unfulfilled with the cat heads, I pulled together a sheep head from memory. It didn’t do too badly. Still rough and needs more working time.

Dave and Tom on the mountain

I had two beautiful clay absorbed days working at the dining room table! This was because I had a Dave free zone! Seriously, I love my husband dearly but it’s been rather challenging working with him on the other side of the wall from my space. Yes, I work better without anyone else around. Thursday he was on-site for work and Friday he went ziplining with my brother Tom at Mt Bachelor. I was totally jealous but we couldn’t both go due to the dogs. They both had such a good time together. What a view!

A view looking up the wall from the lower stairs

Saturday we buttoned up the last bits on the blue pine wall. The door still needs trim, but we have a few bits to sort out with that application. The rest of it is done!

Mary’s Peak

Sunday we went to visit dear friends on their farm. This is where I receive the majority of my wool, where I gather sheep face inspiration and tasty sausage. Unfortunately, the herd is undergoing a major illness that might take the full flock of 10. The ewes have an unknown respiratory infection that took two on Friday and two more are already going down the same route. If the veterinary college can’t figure out a cure quickly enough the entire group will be gone within two weeks. I really hope answers come forward to save the girls. This could mean the end of sheep farming for this couple . It makes me sick. However, I did take a few photos while there. It was strange not to have the lambs around.


Thanks for checking in for yet another installment of my art zone. Stay safe and healthy out there!


Published by paperstew

I'm an artist in Albany Oregon focusing on paper and natural objects for inspiration.

7 thoughts on “Fast and arty in all directions

  1. How busy can you and Dave get? The ziplining looks wonderful, take your mind off everything else, good to see Tom out.
    I feel so bad for the sheep, they are very subject to dying easily, so gentle looking and vulnerable.
    All your art projects are looking great, well maybe the cats can use a touch but your sheep and bears look right, however my view is from teddy bears, not live ones, but you’ll master it and the cats I have confidence.Be easy on your self, please. Love, Jean

    1. Sheep certainly are touchy! My friend says they are “trying to die right from when they’re born”. Fingers crossed the pneumonia strain is being overcome with the antibiotics. Life certainly is full these days. I really hope we can get other projects finished now and be able to live downstairs again! Love to you and Lisa!

    1. I think they might have only lost 3 total as of Monday. The big dose of antibiotics might have helped . Fingers crossed. The critter heads are certainly taking on a life of their own. My studio is covered with wool and clay forms! It’s mayhem in the zoo!

    1. I’m not sure how many sheep have now departed, but it seems like the heavy dose of antibiotics might have done some good. As afar as prolific, I think it’s an avoidance technique to doing specific jobs. One positive thing is that I can spot problems before moving forward with either drawings or sculptures.

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