Sunday, July 31, 2011

Red is my favorite color

and then until someone makes the zombie frog cake.....this is going to go on my top ten list.

BTW - not the cake from the wedding at my house this weekend....just incase you were wondering.  But that one was lovely too.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Bridging the gap

I was taking pictures for work, a kids toy for an ad.  Now I am not a photographer, at all, actually I have more of a negative sense of photography if that is possible, I think if I take a picture it will actually make it worse.  But I have always like photography, my sister started taking classes when we were in high school and she has a natural eye for it.  She helped me understand and appreciate the art form.

Marci Brandt - our uber talented friend - takes most of the pictures for the graveyard.  She make is look much better that it really looks. Almost what I think it should look like....if I actually knew what I was doing :)

Anyway, that got me thinking.  I know that their photo skills look effortless, but both of them would (and have) told me otherwise.  It took time and patience and most of all love.  You have to want to express yourself and have it drive to create something.  The rest is just practice.  Many of us, myself included, never get past that part.  I always assumed if I was talented then things would just come easy.....isn't that how it is with everyone?

About the same time I was thinking this - this poster came across from one of my Twitter friends.  I have to say, I wish I had seen this years really would have changed my understanding of creativity.

I guess in a way I did know some of it....but not really understand it.  I know someone who likes our angel statue, but always thought it should be better and has been talking about making their own "perfect" angel statue.  

They commented to us what they do not like in our versions (and trust me, I see it too) and how their version is going to be so perfect.  We have been having this discussion for years now....we have built three angel statues in that time.....none of them are perfect.  But I do have three physical props and a whole lot of knowledge.....they still have a lot of ideas and some false starts.  Don't get me wrong, I sincerely hope that the first prop they make is as perfect as they see it. The disappointment that you get when your finish prop is not what you saw in your head is hard on the ego....I don't wish that on anyone.

So I now see my angels differently.  Looking at them in this light I would have to say their value lies in that we learned from our mistakes each time and the next version is just that much better.  Actually one of them became "Joan of Arc" - and allowed me to do the first ever international collaborative prop with PumpkinBrain.....I got a cool prop and a great friendship out of the deal.  I would have never found that if my idea as still living perfectly in my head and not "un-perfectly" in the physical world.

If we waited until we could make a perfect prop, we would never make anything.  I have made more than my fair share of not "perfect" props.....many of them are in the yard and I am fine with that.  They represent the creative process of the most fantastic group of people I know.  In that way, they are perfect and priceless.

But, trust me, we are never satisfied and I can tell you that you will likely see several more angels and abbey facades, many more tombstones and props.  Someday, probably not as soon as we would like, we will be creating things that are as good as our ambitions (or Toph's drawings - sorry, that is totally an inside joke....remind to explain it to you all someday.)

......I am not done yet....I know this post is long.  I should have told you to take a potty break before reading.

For those of you that struggle with creating something.....and for those of you that do create amazing things, I imagine you are going to understand this next bit.

I have been toying with little Halloween creations for a while now.  Inspired by the many, many talented bloggers who have beautifully creepy Etsy stores.....I am so jealous of all of you :)  I have made a few things....but they all seem so, well, just not even close to as good as anything else I have seen.  I would be totally embarrassed to claim any of my frog queen follies as art.  Yes, I am a coward, have been all my life.  

I tell myself I am too busy working on other things....but the truth of the matter is (sleep is overrated) I am sure I could find a few hours a week do keep making things....awful things, until my stuff did not suck so much.  But I don't, cause the thought of another project that I spend hours of time on coming out looking like shit just defeats me.  That is my own fault.  I do own that, and I am not proud.

Following this line of thinking - that believing that I things must be "perfect" - the first time, I have really set myself back on many things that I should have done right now.  Husband and I have been talking about a book for years.....we have a lot of work done on it - but it is not finished.  Although I do some print design work for a living, this one is over my head...I have tried a couple times and was just overwhelmed by the project.....and how I really did not know anything about book design and I have a lot of work ahead of me.  So I am really the problem with that whole project, if I would have kept moving from the start, even at the slow pace.....I would be done right now and there would be a Davis Graveyard book.

But I am learning.  Husband and I are working on another secret project.  It is not coming out as I would like it....but I realize that if I keep stalling this to try and redo things to make them perfect, the project will never get done.  I have to, let's see, how do I want to say this.....not exactly "lower my standards" (well, actually that is part of it) but just get over myself and realize that this is going to be far from perfect when it is done....and yes, there are things wrong, and yes,  there are going to be people that call it crap or nitpick - trust me I will be right with them in the front row cringing.....but I am going to finish it, and because I am finishing it and putting it out there....the next one will be that much better and the next one better still.

At least that is the feeling that I get when I sit real still with my cup of tea and tell all the voices in my head to just stop for a minute and let me do something....cause endless limbo, although drama free and safe, is pretty frickin' boring.  Failing hurts - sometimes I really think I will not make it through, but I have made it this far.

So, my friends, onward through the gap! See you all on the other side!

Been a long time since I posted on the Folly this post was not long enough!

Been way too long

without an LOLcat post

That ending would have made the movie a lot shorter....and more interesting :)


Thursday, July 28, 2011

You need to put your wine glass

on a coaster at the Davis Graveyard....and have I ever found the perfect ones!  Check these out at over at thinkgeek.

Not that I would ever use these

I believe if you are going to open a bottle of wine....don't be a quitter....finish the damn thing!  Really people!

Oh and for those of you that put the top back on the bottle after you pour wine (especially red) - you don't know d*ck about wine.  Air is good for the wine.....let it breathe.  And I have to say thanks for saving me from making the mistake of ever sharing good wine with you.....I see now that that would be waste.  I bet you buy wine just because of the label too?  You scare me in that not good way.

Where was I?  Sorry....I get a bit carried away when it comes to wine.

Anyway, for you the more responsible drinkers their are these very cool wine toppers.

You can get them here. Okay even I have to admit they are pretty cool.  The only thing that would make them cooler is if they were zombie frogs....just saying.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

It looks so harmless now

Here is a picture of the panels for the abbey - all assembled and ready to carve and decorate...see it does not look like that big of  a deal that the moment and it does not seem to take up much space.

Ha!  That is how it always starts.....draws you in and you just keep adding to it until it is three or four times it's least that is what the last church facade did :D

Here  is another view....what are all those tables?

Oh, yeah, we are having a wedding in the yard this weekend.  Let me tell you, it has been like Grand Centeral Station at the graveyard with both the abbey build and the wedding prep going on!  Looking forward to just focusing on Halloween for a while.

To see the other side of the Davis Graveyard - the actual yard, when it is not being haunted.  Check out the pictures at the Haunted Gardens blog.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

it is geting closer!

Look at the boxes to soon be unloaded at my local Dollar Tree!
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I never thought I would want to give up

my cool Starbucks Halloween mug that I use at work.....but I think I might have found my replacement.

This made me LOL this am.... literally! that I think about it.....might give my department the excuse to poison me.....I should probably rethink this one!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Frog Queen folly

Let me start by saying I really do have to say I am married to the most patient man on the planet.

Like many of you our back door is the main door for the house.  With all the stuff going on during the year it gets a lot of traffic and the screen has had to be replaced a few times so I thought we needed something stronger than the thin screen.

Now a normal person would just buy some denser mesh or some metal grate type thing....but I am not normal.  I thought it would be so cool to have the graveyard part of our logo cut out of wood and painted to match the door.

Husband rolled his eyes and said....if you print it out the size it needs to be we will cut it on the scroll saw.  Yeah!

We finally got it painted and installed this weekend.  I bit more paint and it will be perfect!

I love it!!
One of my favorite follies!!

Note...yes, that is a skull in the flower pot to the right of the door :)

View from the inside of the screen

Yes, it is Halloween 365 days a year at our house.

The skulls have eyes

We are having a wedding the our yard next Saturday, so we have been working like mad to get the yard ready.  Yesterday the couple that is getting married brought a bunch of friends over to help and they brought some who found the skulls in the yard very entertaining.

Concrete skulls + black glass beads = interactive art!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Walls, walls, walls

These are the panels for two walls of the abbey
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Let's see what the cards have to say

I started reading tarot cards back in high school.  While my friends were out partying, I was at home studying and learning about the cards.  Yes, I  was one of the nerdy kids.

I spent many evenings reading them for my sister, her and I would sit up at our grandmas house and read each others cards.  That was a fun time and one of the happiest parts of my childhood - so I just have a warm fuzzy place in my heart for tarot cards.

Which is evendent by my collection of about 20 sets of cards, all different themes and sizes.

My favorite for the last, hum...about 10 years has been the Authrian Tarot deck, that husband bought me for Christmas.  I have always loved the Authur Legend (traveling to Tintagel last year was the fruition of a long quest of mine) so they just speak to me.

I am sure that someday a new set will take my fancy, but for now, if I give readings.  That is the deck I use.

I used to read them during our Halloween party, but it was so popular that one year I literally spent the whole 6 hours of the party reading cards.  I was horse the next day....and I did not get to drink - I never drink (alchol) when I am reading.

Because of the popularity of the readings, we created a "tarot area" in the party. Husband built a partiaion to give me and the person getting the reading more privacy and I put all kinds of scarves and fabric with low lighting and candles.  Definitely embracing my fortune teller image.

To give me some breaks, I started taking appointments.....that did not help much, although I got to take breaks, I did not get many.

Then we started the sign up sheet.  I would do four an hour and they were not full readings - more yes or no questions.  That worked well until the party before last.  I read for the first person - that done, I put the cards away, walked out and announced that I was not reading for the rest of the night.


True.  It is one of those moments in life that if I could back up and do over I would.  A close friend of mine had just lost his father days before, I was even surprised he came to the party.  But he did and was the first person to sign up for a reading.

I knew when I saw his name I should just say no.  I did this for fun and he was looking for something a bit more serious.  It crossed my mind to offer to read for him later, maybe in a few months, I should have.  I just had a feeling that neither of us should be doing this.  But I did not listen.

The first set of cards were bad, he even knows the cards enough to know that.  The second better....I did deal one more time...we both finally realized this was a bad idea.

I always did these to be fun and entertaining - this was neither of those.  I was done.  I came downstairs and told everyone "sorry fortune teller is broken" and got myself a drink...or three.

Husband had always encouraged me to do the readings even when I did not want to, because everyone enjoyed it so much.  When I told him I was not doing them the next year, he protested.  But I would not be swayed on this one.

I asked if he would make me one of those Zoltar booths instead.  That project is actually on the long term prop list now :D  I can't hardly wait!!

I did not do tarot readings last year and you know what the party sans the fortune teller managed along just fine.

Now, this did not stop me reading them.  I still do, just not in large groups of people - or at least in that can feel the need coming off of people sometimes....when they walk up to the table and take a seat, you just know they are looking at you for those words that will ease their mind.  Not something I can always deliver.  When that is the case I usually like do an other reading or ask some questions....but in the large party setting I do not have the time and I said, then it is no longer fun.

Like I said...I am really looking forward to my Zoltar booth!!

So why did I drag you all here?

Because my super talented friend makes all kinds of cool stuff out of old materials and sells them on his Paper Lunchbox Etsy store.  Has just created a "terrifically tarot" card section on his Etsy page.  You have to check it out - he is using vintage tarot cards to make greeting cards.  They are fantastic!  Definitely check out the descriptions....he writes for his day job - so as you can imagine, he comes up with some pretty clever working, sure to make you smile.

There are a few of them that I love, but of course, The Cat is my favorite

Atop the card, you'll find a vintage "27 The Cats" tarot card (circa 1955), along with two vintage cream caps (a favorite among cats!) and three vintage buttons.

Behold the mystical, wondrous predictions of the tarot card. You, lucky mortal, have drawn card number 28 — The Sword. Atop the card, you'll find a vintage "28 The Sword" tarot card (circa 1955), along with a vintage dance ticket from 1946, plus a vintage yellow button with a vintage religious pin glued on top. 

Behold the mystical, wondrous predictions of the tarot card. You, lucky mortal, have drawn card number 32. Zap! Crackle! Spark! Better drop that umbrella. Atop the card, you'll find a vintage "32 The Lightning" tarot card (circa 1955), along with a vintage stamped metal tag and a vintage orange glass button.
Hum....those make me want to get out my tarot cards this weekend......anyone up for a reading? 


I won the drawing on the lovely Amethyst and Lily Pads blog.....she included this lovely frog statue.  She saw it an thought of me.  How thoughtful is that.

She has a great blog that I love reading.  She has a great sense of humor and a fantastic outlook on life.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Making progress

We start with a model of the idea
Have your engineering friend make a 3-D version
Start building the frames
Attach foam to frames

Start building and shaping the panels
Stack the panels as you build 
Set up the first story and start drawing the stones
View from the front of the yard 

Start drawing the lines on the next 2 stories

Mess up drawing the lines....and clearly mark which lines NOT to  dremel
Stones for the top story front
Supplies for the back and left side of the abbey for building this weekend

 We are going to be busy this weekend!!!  What are you all up to? 

Thursday, July 21, 2011

If you are in the area

here in the rainy Pacific Northwest we are having our own Halloween gathering.  FrightFest NW (look like the page has not been update, I think the FB is more current) - it happens every year at Champoeg (pronounced shampo-ey) state park.  It is a great gathering for home haunters.  There are great people that will show you how to make all kinds of cool props and you get to hang around and socialize!

Attend if you can.  We cannot.

A good friend of ours is getting married in the yard this next weekend and we are building a new we just cannot take a whole weekend off at this point.

And there is the camping thing....the FQ does not like to camp.  I go with the "hotel with no room service is camping" deal.  Yep, that about sums it up.

When you gotta get there fast

This almost looks like a homemade Halloween prop....anyone recognize "peaches"?  Or is that a store bought piece...yes, any excuse to post a cat pic. :)

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Not an LOLcat

funny celebrity pictures - Btch, please.
see more Lol Celebs

Now I love them both....but tell me....honestly, who can compare to the magnificence that is Vincent Price?  ...I am not really asking...that is a rhetorical question :D

Portland may be weird

but not weird enough....looks like I have to go to St. Paul Minnesota to see a Terry Pratchett play.  FQ is not happy :(

Seems The Mounds theater is doing a production of Mort!  I love the death books....almost as much as the witch books....almost :)

A play based on the novel by award winning writer Terry Prachett
Adaptation by Stephen Briggs
Director: Caitlin Hammel

Performed by the Mounds Theatre Community Players!
Death comes to Mort with an offer he can't refuse -- especially since being, well, dead isn't compulsory. As Death's apprentice, he'll have free board and lodging, use of the company horse, and he won't need time off for family funerals. The position is everything Mort thought he'd ever wanted, until he discovers that this perfect job can be a killer on his love life.

How cool is that!!!

Here is an image of the skull mask they made for death....perfect!

The perfect picture

I found this on one of my clipart sites.

I collect frogs and husband collects this picture made me smile....had to share.  Not Halloween related in the slightest.  That happens sometimes!

I have plans

they are evil plans.....but they are plans none the less!!!

For better or worse....likely the latter.  We have sold the old church so we have to build the new abbey....someone stop the madness.

Actually....I kinda like it never mind....go about your business :)

What crazy things are you up to today?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Well look at the size of that....

skull.  Oh, and shiny and colorful too!

The skull is 16.9 inches long, from front to back. We specially saved a large piece of high quality fluorite for caving this titan skull, and were all amazed by its beauty when all the caving and polishing were done. It has a rainbow of colors all over its surface. When putting it under the sun, the light will get through it and be refracted into uncountable particles, which resulte in the glow with amazing colors. The best camera will still fail to freeze all the colors in one photo. So you get to see it with your own eyes.

You have to check out their website

Only 3 more days

until I get to go see

Evil Dead the Musical!

Happy, Happy, Joy, Joy!!!

I am hanging with this guy

when the zombie apocalypse occurs.  Check out this ultimate zombie survival gun.

He has a great walk thru on the build on his website.  Check it out.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Sometimes I hear voices

I know...I am always looking for a reason to post an LOLcat...and this one is one of my favs.

So...anyway...speaking of voices.  The super talented Chris Baker and Revenant from Hauntcast have teamed up to create a voice over company that can help you with your "creepy" voice needs for your haunt!  Check out Vox Noctis and be sure to get your order in early so you can get that uber cool talking skull or video ghost effect ready in time for Halloween*!!

*Who am I kidding, we all know we are going to be working on our props right up until the first TOT stops by!  But every year I tell myself I will not do that again next year :)

I am a sucker

for things that glow in the dark.  Could be from when I was a kid an my uncle showed me his room (no, nothing like that, we were close to the same age my grandparents remarried....several times, so I have an interesting assortment of step/half aunts and uncles....anyway) and the walls looked normal until you turned on this black light he had and he had all this writing and pictures on the walls in chalk - so cool.

So....long explanation for why I think this is so cool and we might have to try it this year....since my cool friend over at Merlin's Magical Mistress got me searching for a vegetarian jello and I found one!!!

The recipe requires gin....which I am not a huge fan of except for the gin they use in the recipe (Hennricks) - so I think that is another sign that I need to make these!!!

Click here for the recipe.

Check out more of her work....including the glow in the dark shot martini at her Instructables page.

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