Sunday, January 29, 2012

The Sandman

The sandman is an interesting mythical figure in our culture. I can remember talking to Jenny about him one late night after finishing a piece of artwork. We started talking about his origins & told one another that if we found anything about him, we would be sure to share it. I love creepy claymation/animation & so, after finding this wonderfully made performance from 1992 by Paul Berry, I decided it would make a fun post & a creepy reminder that the purpose of the sandman lies as much in threat as in promise. Some tales say he spreads sand into your eyes @ bedtime to make you sleepy & according to this animation, this may not be an innocent motive. enjoy. ~Anna

Woodburning Projects (& Calendar Journal Update)

To keep my creative energy flowing and to give me a way to escape schoolwork and responsibilities, I have all sorts of crazy side projects that float in and out of my life. And this past year, I have taken up woodburning as a hobby. It's a lot of fun! And I'm glad I got into it. I have done a series of burning and staining projects for friends and family. This one here is my current project and it's a box for myself. :) This is how it looked when I bought it:

I started this project in July of last year and I'm still not done with it! I blame other projects distracting me and, of course, I also blame school. Sheesh, taking up all of my free time! Anyway, this is how it looks right now: 

The plan is to eventually finish burning the pattern all the way around the box's sides. As you can see, I have the back side half way finished. I also have the other short side to finish. Once I'm done with the woodburning, I'll stain it and it'll be done! So more photos to come!

The woodburning pen that I use is the Walnut Hollow Model: WH-750F (16.5W 120V AC 60Hz). It was sold at Michael's when I purchased it and it was only $10. I also bought the tip variety set which was another ~$8, if I remember right. This particular woodburning pen is advertised as designed for use by women. I have seen the woodburners sold at hardware stores and the one I use is definitely not as power-tool like. All in all, I like the pen and it serves my purposes well. :)

Also! I'd like to update you all on my calendar journal. I haven't gotten to work on the woodburning (Heck, I haven't even sketched a pattern on it yet). But I have been keeping up with the cards for the days and begun thinking of what I'd like to burn on it.

I have been thinking of doing a chevron stripe-type of pattern but I'm deciding on whether or not I want to commit to another filled pattern (it takes much longer to burn it to fill). I have also been thinking of sketching some illustrations of wish flowers and their seeds. I may take some inspiration from images like these:

I'm excited to finish my box and get a move on working on my calendar journal. I'm trying really hard not to start other projects until these are finished. I'm horrible at finished projects sometimes! And looking at Pinterest every day is making it harder not to start new projects - so many great ideas on there! But there'll be more updates to come as these two progress! And I hope you have success in finishing any projects that you may have in your life! Happy creating!
- Jenny -

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Aquatic masks project

This week has been a little slice of adult life for my normally loose schedule. long story short between trying to drive in the snow, get to work on time & be the boss for most of the past week, I have had little time to do what I hope will become a solid career for me in the next couple of years(working on that). My art. Right now, you could say I'm  in an experimental phase with my mediums, but currently my focus has been on mask making. Part of this may stem from my strange love of all things Halloween & the fact that I could never find what I was looking for in the mask department. Another reason may just be that I watched so many monster movies growing up that I was always interested in how they MADE those monsters. Often times, in such classics as the old time Creature from the Black Lagoon , The Alien series, all sorts of werewolf films, the monsters were humans dressed up in awesome (or sometimes not so awesome) creature suits made by all sorts of people. Moving back to what I'm up to, I just sent the preliminary sketch for what may become four mask commissions for sea creatures in a school film project. There will be two fish (one red & one blue), one whale & one kraken! hooray! anyway, this is one of the multiple projects that will be eating my time(but in a good way). maybe I'll post some pics as they get finished! ~Anna

Snowy Dreams

So this week, I have experienced a lot of snow! I wasn't sure if we were going to get any snow this year in Pullman, WA. Usually, we get snow fairly consistently through the winter with a couple of "snowpocaplyse" days. This year was pretty warm though. We only had one real snowfall and it was before Thanksgiving! And then it was all just frost and cold nights. The snow finally showed up though! So, as I said in my last post, I went to LookOut Pass on the ID-MT border with my club AIChE WSU for our second annual Ski Trip. It was a lot of fun. Good times were had by all. We were up there on Saturday, stayed the night in Kellogg, skied and snowboarded on Sunday, and drove back that night. It's a good thing that we drove back that night, too, because the next day LookOut Pass and 4th of July Pass (the two passes we drove through) were closed.

When we arrived in Pullman, it was snowing pretty heavily and it continued to do so all the way through to Thursday! Heck, WSU even cancelled classes on Thursday and that never happens. I also got the splendid opportunity to get my Infiniti out of a pickle by putting on my snow chains all on my own! It was quite the adventure.

With all the snow this week, I have been prompted to look into the Winter Wonderland fun that people from all over have during the snowy parts of the year and something that has always been of interest to me is snow sculpting. I have tried my hand at it in my back yard a couple of times, but these sculptures from the International Snow Sculpture Championships, held in Breckenridge, CO are truly amazing!
(Pictures via here)

Milite Est Vita, by Team Lithuania - 1st place winners 2010

Discovery, by Team Breckenridge - 1st place winners 2006

When Winter Comes, by Team Canada - 1st place winners 2003

It's just awe-striking, right? Crazy cool. Maybe someday I'll try my hand at something so immense! The website for this competition also has links to videos about how they make the giant snow blocks for the competitions - it's pretty cool! ;)
- Jenny -

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Under the Stars

Being a city kid, I never did see much of the milky way @ night. Sometimes when the family would take trips out of town, we got lucky, we'd pull over the car & crane our necks @ the wide expanse of stars we saw so little of @ home. Now, I still live in the city, but I miss the stars. I've decided whenever I get the chance, or when I get my own home, I'm going to decorate the ceilings with stars. Like this:

  Looking around the web, I found someone who does this very thing as a job! How cool is that?! Artist, muralist & illusionist Frank Wilson has been painting ceilings & making beautiful pictures that involve nature & light for a long time. He uses rare earth phosphors that glow in the dark & change depending on the lighting. The first four pictures are actually the same picture, a mural of Mt. Shasta seen from a fully lit room to a completely dark one. Amazing, huh? The other two are examples of some of the art he does as a wall or ceiling mural. By day, they look like a blank wall, but by night, the rare earth phosphors glow to reveal beautiful scenes of nature. If you'd like to see more you can check out the website @  Until next week, enjoy nature & take some time to look @ the stars. ~Anna

Friday, January 13, 2012

Food Adventures: Slow Cooker Turkey Chili

Hi, all! I am posting tonight instead of tomorrow because I will be leaving early in the morning for the second annual AIChE (American Institute of Chemical Engineers) at WSU (Washington State University) Ski Trip! :) We're going to Lookout Pass in Idaho for two days of fun on the slopes. Anyway!  That means that I am unable to post tomorrow. So here is my post now!

Over the years of "living on my own," I have developed a real love of food. I have fallen in love with cooking and baking and many say that I'm pretty good at it. I think they're all silly - Cooking is easy! Especially with a slow cooker. Take this week for example: it was my first week back to classes after the winter break and my classes went straight to work - no easing us back into the swing of things. Haha. I guess that's what happens when you're a senior Chemical Engineering major... But! I still found time to make dinner, even on what ended up being my busiest day of the week - this Thursday. It was my first day back in my 3-hour lab and I had to run errands on my break. But I fell back on a great recipe that is not only easy but delicious and pretty healthy.

I found the recipe that I adapted a bit to get the recipe shown below, while I was browsing I hope you enjoy it! (Picture of the chili shown on the recipe is also from
 Have a great weekend! 
- Jenny -

Friday, January 6, 2012

To Infinity & Beyond

I don't know why, but lately I have rediscovered my love for the infinity symbol. I can still remember when Anna and I were in high school and we had the infinity symbol in our math classes, we would draw the symbol in the company of hearts and the word "love" all the time on our friends' notebooks. It was a lot of fun. To this day, I still love infinity. I like it in math as well as in its symbolism. Taking the limits, with respect to math, I have found isn't all that bad (compared to some of the other things my engineering professors ask me to do mathematically).

I think the symbol is beautiful and the meaning it can have in the world of love and peace is even more gorgeous.
Anyway, because I have found my love for infinity again, I have done some window shopping and I have found some awesome things that I just need while browsing Maybe one day I'll actually acquire some of these things. Ha!

Along with these things above, I have been gawking at this beautiful ring. Wow. 

("I love you" infinity ring)

And I kind of want to get a tattoo of the infinity symbol. Would that be taking this little obsession too far? 

I hope you enjoyed my little display of a current obsession! Do you have a symbol or image that you really like or connect with? 
- Jenny -

Hey, friends!
Like this post? Check out my Hakuna Matata and I Pin. I Conquer. posts! 

The Werewolf Calendar

  I always get a calendar for Christmas it seems like every year I get @ least one if not two or more! This year being the only exception since I can't even remember. That being said, I've been casually shopping for a calendar I liked since the new year & finally, while checking out one of my favorite werewolf artist's websites  (the art of Janette Brown aka Sugarpoultry) I also found a link to a site I'd previously forgotten about!!

Did I mention that I'm a little crazy about werewolves? I am, & I freely & proudly admit it. Not to mention the werewolf calendar gets some of the finest artwork all in one place for all us nutty people that just LOVE those bloodthirsty, shapeshifting monsters.

 On a different note, I'm posting this a little early as I am going to be rather busy Saturday, which Jenny & I decided is going to be our regular day of updating. So, until next Saturday, enjoy some awesome werewolf art! This is called No Use Running by sugarpoultry who won second place in the werewolf calendar. Soooo good!~ Anna