It came early. The rain that is. It’s been a bit of a guessing game as to when it would start. Would it be Saturday or Sunday? Will it start around noon on Saturday or around 9am? It chose the 9:30am Saturday time slot.
This early rain puts a damper on the final painting push. I was delayed a few days this last week due to back problems and sciatic nerve pain starting Tuesday morning. I could hardly lift my left leg three inches before massive pain shot through my body. It’s now Saturday and I’m almost fully functional, only twinges of pain here and there. During the pain period I still kept pushing forward, but not at a rapid pace. Ice packs and heating pads throughout the days. I finished scraping down and prepping the large and small panels, soapy wash and a good rinse, and the alcohol de-greasing wipe down. Two coats of primer on everything then two to three coats of paint. I’m still working on the paint.
The garage/workspace is a disaster. I’ll probably spend a bit of time cleaning up aluminum shavings and everything else. Empty spray cans, vinyl wrapping, chunks of non-usable sign material chucked in a bin with good stuff. Looks like a creative bomb went off in the space. I do need to finalize my mounting design before drilling holes in the two parts (metal silhouette and backboard). I also have not even started the two small panels that fit in the center of the quads. Since they’re so small, I hope that I’ll be able to pop them out pretty quickly compared to everything else!
The push continues until the end, that being Tuesday! I’m really looking forward to getting my life back. My husband is looking forward to getting me back as well! Nothing like a major project to disrupt the household.
I’m working like crazy to get the project completed by this Friday. Why Friday? Because I want the weekend to myself! I’m so tired of the whole thing. Yet, I have to keep plugging along and try to forget those negative thoughts as they arise.
Today I started bracing parts together. What does that mean? Well, I only had 4 ft of product to work with and I required 5 ft in the long panels. So splicing occurred and now extra aluminum is being epoxied both front and back on the seams. The center granary is requiring extra bracing before it receives a few more curvy cuts. It was easiest to add the extra foot at the bottom of that design.
I had hoped to join in a show this Thursday during the Corvallis Art Walk. A friend asked on Sunday if I would be interested and I (of course) said YES! Silly me! My plate is far too full for jumping ship right now. The show is titled Then and Now, looking back at the art from our early years and comparing it to current work. Sounded like fun! I declined the invitation this morning but I’ll post the image of me at about age 4 and a drawing I made during those early years. The image was of a card I received for my second birthday. The framed piece hung in my fathers studio until I cleared out the house in 2013 after his death. I didn’t even know it was my work until asking my sister. It’s nice to have older siblings.
The baby I’m holding isn’t a sibling but the child of family friend. I think it was the only child they had since the husband died mountain climbing on Mt McKinley in Alaska.
Back to the project!
This small strip pretty much says it all. The project is coming soon. Very soon. Like, the 20th of September for my work. Two weeks from now. And yes, I’m in the freak-out stage of work.
I spent several days scraping off aluminum burs and ragged plastic parts on all 8 major squares. Not a very fun job, plus it took a couple panels before I discovered that the above blade was the way to go. I also discovered what sections were on the loose side and now have to figure out a bit of strengthening repair work prior to painting.
Ah, the paint job! That other bit of decision work that’s been put off for a very long time. I’ve chosen basic black because it helps pop the images more against a lighter background.
I did play around with a blue color, but it wasn’t going to read well enough with everything going on around it. Black will keep it closer to the actual cut paper look. I’ll use a creamy light yellow for the background panel. Don’t tell the Beaver Believers that I’m using Duck colors! Today it’s raining so painting has been put on hold.
And then there’s those two outer panel designs (plus a couple of little 1 ft x 1 ft panels to design as well). On Sunday I connected with my best friend and took a road trip back out to Halsey. The weather was beautiful with puffy clouds in blue sky. We wandered around the countryside, down roads I’d never taken, looking for the right barn. Eventually I ended up at one I had been eyeing for many weeks. I trudged across the field to get a better reference shot to work from. The golden fields are now under a blanket of smooth tan. The lush greens have left, but will return in a few weeks with rain. A few more alterations to the above designs and I’ll print them out and attach to the remaining panels for cutting.
The left barn is on Lake Creek Rd and the right is on Powerline Rd.
So much more to accomplish in the next 2 weeks.
For those checking in for the first time: This is my journey to create a public artwork for the city of Halsey, OR. The work will be hung September 20, 2016 and will remain up to 6 months at 838 W. 1st ST. I was inspired by Halsey’s connection to the land: agricultural crops and the scenery looking west from town. This project is sponsored through The Arts Center of Corvallis, DLF/Pickseed USA, and The Oregon Arts Commission.
Far Right Panel Idea:
I’m pushing myself forward as the new week approaches. Sunday afternoon I sat down and did a quick and inaccurate cut of a barn, fields, and Mary’s Peak in the background. I didn’t even really think about all the perspective lines and where the true horizon line should be located. I’ll need to go back in and get more specific with everything. I really just wanted to see if this concept would work as a long panel to the far right. Simpler design. Nothing too fancy. Nothing too detailed. All the big detail are in the smaller works. The image is based on a photo I took a week ago while in Halsey.
Center Panel Update: Isn’t it done yet????
It’s getting closer to completion. I had a rough start that didn’t look so hot due to a screw up with perspective (plus I needed to add on an additional foot of sky space, and that just didn’t work). So, the image below shows the first attempt on the left and the most recent on the right. By placing the granary to the top of the frame, it helped provide needed line support. At the bottom are trees. There were also houses in the image, but I omitted them along with the Cross Bros Seed & Grain Inc signage. I did try to use the words, but it was too much. It needed to be simple. Halsey residents will know what it is. Working with shrubbery will be challenging enough.
Also remember that everything that’s white will soon become black!
Far Left Panel?
No design started. I’ll make yet another trip back out to town for a photo shoot. Idea possibilities: more fields with a different barn or hay bales stacked or piles of grass seed.
Isn’t it fun to continue designing and redesigning panels as they go along?
Northwest Art and Air Festival
We slacked off until Sunday morning to chase balloons. It was a beautiful morning! Below are a few photos of the chase.
Dave enjoying having both dogs along. It was Hazel’s maiden voyage uncrated in the car! She was so horribly afraid, but it got easier as time went along. We were out for about 2 hours.
Ok, I’ll leave you all and head back into the studio. Only one dog with me until Monday night and no Dave (he and Moby went to Yachats for a nice break). We will see how Hazel handles life without her big brother. So far, so good.
Have a great start to your week!
Somehow, I’ve managed to get to this point, completing the first 8 panels for the Halsey project. The actual wall placement isn’t correct yet, but there’s still more to figure out. The Meadowfoam flowers completed the set.
Interestingly, here at home the city has been working on the water main/meter for the past 3 days. Today, I actually chatted with the guys and one of them LIVES in Halsey! In fact, I even know which house! It was nice to show him the piece in progress. He knows which building I’ll be hanging the work on and said he’ll stop by. It’s such a small world around here.
Last week I was returning from a Eugene trip and stopped in Halsey for a few more photos before sunset. Well, traffic in Eugene was horrible (due to a major accident) and I was late heading north. By the time I reached Halsey, the sun had already set. However, there was another big event occurring in town: one of the seed warehouses was on fire! A major bummer for DLF. From what I heard, no one was injured and I still hope that’s true. The building was the farthest south in their lineup and it won’t effect our project. Of course I had my camera along and snapped a couple of quick photos. Then I went off and visited a barn I adore. You’ll be seeing it in the side panels along with Mary’s Peak.
Large panels to get started tomorrow! Or so I hope!
And for those just checking in for the first time: This is my journey to create a public artwork for the city of Halsey, OR. The work will be hung September 20, 2016 and will remain up for 6 months. I was inspired by Halsey’s connection to the land: agricultural crops and the scenery looking west from town. This project is sponsored through The Arts Center of Corvallis and DLF/Pickseed USA.
Finally panel #7 is finished! I’ve been reading more about certain crops like Meadowfoam and Radishes. They’re grown for oil production. Bees are 100% required for pollinating the crops, nothing else can do the job.
Panel #8 is now in design mode. I started a piece focused on apple branches, but I’m getting pulled towards creating a meadowfoam image. We shall see which one wins. Here’s a preview of the flower cut. Still more to figure out.
Progress continues forward as energy levels fade. Three out of four pairs are now cut. The wheat image (upper right) was completed today after almost four days of work. Granted, the work wasn’t continuous. I burned out after the first four squares and had a difficult time trying to move forward. This type of project is probably the hardest to push myself through. A completed project is absolutely required! No skipping off to work on something else. I made a solid commitment plus contract so I’ll get the job done.
What holds me back? Part of it is the tediousness of daily cutting. It’s boring work. I drill holes, thread my saw blade, tighten things up and cut. Then I shift to the next section (unhook the blade, insert into the next hole, tighten and repeat). Some panels have well over 100 sections to cut. It makes me feel bad when I lose energy towards a major project. I feel like such a slacker if I take time off, yet my brain can’t actually turn off. Adding in Netflix to provide some entertainment helps a bit. Another thing holding me back is the lack of clean cuts. Yes, I want perfection but lines are uneven and wander.The backside of the work is really frazzled and requires loads of clean up. I want the clean edges of cut paper! Yet, I have to keep reminding myself that this is an experiment. If I ever decide to do something more substantial for a city project, I’ll have another company cut the work. Thanks to one of my friends, I now know who to contact in the local area for this type of job!
What’s the next step? I have two more 2’x 2′ panels (Radish and other). Then I move into the big ones (2′ x 5′)! The granary image requires a bit more touch up. There’s also the other two outer panels that remain a mystery. Also a couple of 1′ x 1′ hand images. I figure if I get too stressed for time, the outer long panels could be sacrificed and the design would still hold together just fine.
Now, if we could just get a bit cooler weather. I’m melting in the garage these days. Should reach 96 F (35.5C) or higher today.
On to the next piece!
BTW: If you’re just tuning in, this is a public art project that will hang in Halsey Oregon in mid September. The Arts Center of Corvallis OR, are the ones running the Art in Rural Communities program. This was a juried piece that will be on display for up to 6 months. For additional information please click here