27 December 2011

Currently Blocking The Dining Table ...

long woodblock
Originally uploaded by Id Marks
I have been dabbling a tiny bit in woodblock printing. And shall continue dabbling, because that's how I roll. I really like it, and have begun to scheme a bit.

Also working on crochet, embroidery, that tea chest door, and some other random goodies.

Click through the photo to see a few more images from this project.

29 November 2011

on the drawing board today

on the drawing board today
Originally uploaded by Id Marks
I am trying to learning how to turn my lovely swirled designs into proper motifs for painting. I don't know if this is the right step, but the *current* step is> Make it bigger!

This is about 16" x 30", on newsprint type paper. Although I have done lots of attempts to get my ideas down in watercolor, it might work better in a more ... weighty medium. So, probably try acrylic or oil for this. Soon, even.

28 November 2011

Latest in Knitwear...

back of the hand
Originally uploaded by Id Marks
This weekend I was possessed (POSSESSED, I tell you!) by the need to make gloves out of some super soft, super stretchy AMBRA merino wool.

No, I know they don't match. They're not really meant to. I am learning to make the various parts of a glove that fit precisely, because I am having trouble finding gloves that don't squeeze me and make my hands *colder*. I need precision gloves. The thumb on the left glove, for instance, is a perfect fit. And the palm-to-knuckles bit of the right glove is bang on.

Sadly, I don't know if I would be able to wear these any length of time, because they are wool, but they were not irritating to make, so that's a good start. Maybe if I wash them with some fabric softener?

Anyway, I was thinking about what to do with all my gloves and socks that don't have mates. And I thought about how it is very common this time of year to see solo gloves and scarves and things littered around town. People place them up on fence posts and in window sills and on crossing signal posts, so if the original owner should happen by, they will find their lost item.

So THEN I thought, I will take pictures of each of my insane knit items, and leave them around town randomly, and then in the spring, go to the city lost & found office and see how many of them end up there. (Why do I call them insane knit items? Oh, did I say? I was thinking, since they aren't really meant to be worn, I could make stuff like gloves with 9 fingers, or something that looks like a tiny pajamas for a turtle.)

Only, I probably will use less expensive wool, if I do that. Probably I will wear these gloves when I go to put the Lost Items into the world. :)

24 November 2011

It is difficult for me to express how much I love this. I mean, I love Diego Rivera, too. But this is .... wow. Go read the article for the back story, and some progress / process pictures, and a photo of the peeps who made it happen.

10 November 2011

08 November 2011

20 September 2011

Forgot to say...

Originally uploaded by Id Marks
I also re-potted my bonsai. It's much happier now, has the first new growth it has had in ages. Somewhere in there is a metaphor about art, but I am probably too lazy to spell it out.

If you want to see more pictures of recent work, there are a few in Flickr that did not get posted on this blog today. Just click on this picture to go through to the Flickr stream, and start clicking to see all the most recent.

Hot off the non-press

ink on wash
Originally uploaded by Id Marks
Just finished this one today. India ink over watercolor. It kind of looks like an old-timey hand colored etching, except that it isn't an etching. Probably going to explore this technique / style combo a bit more in the near future, as it was pretty satisfying.

more ink and brush

Originally uploaded by Id Marks
I have been into the ink washes lately. This one kinda made me happy, but I feel like it is missing something.

Lost in translation...

swirls and ribbons
Originally uploaded by Id Marks
I made a sketch in pencil that I liked very much, and wanted to convert it to a painting. It ... doesn't quite do justice.

Another unfinished thing

Originally uploaded by Id Marks
These were meant to be the four sides of a candle lantern ... and would have looked supercool with the candle light glowing through the paper. But I got stuck because I have been trying not to purchase any new materials, but don't have anything suitable to frame this out. And just gluing it together didn't seem wise.

watercolor experiment 2

watercolor experiment 2
Originally uploaded by Id Marks
I have been dabbling in some watercolor techniques. My desk is covered in pages like this one, where I adore some of what's there, but not the rest of it. Not enough to frame it. But I don't throw them out. Maybe I have a brilliant future in collage.

Questions Have Been Asked...

learning to knit
Originally uploaded by Id Marks
Well, questions have been implied.

I have been teaching myself to knit. Because. Uh. Reasons. My specialty so far seems to be making one of things that should be in pairs.

Following this post will be a bunch more posts with other stuff I have been doing, but just know that I have spent many, many hours over the last four months struggling to produce random objects out of yarn.

15 June 2011

Vaguely Botanical ...

Originally uploaded by Id Marks
I am still learning the ins and outs of getting my scanner to give me what I want. Sadly, some of my work is a bit larger than the scanner bed. Ahh, well, if that is my worst problem in life ...

Here you see a painting I did a while back (late last year or early this year), and haven't posted because it is not yet matted. Matted = Finished. Problem? Not sure what color mat to go with. Black is obvious, but not sure it is the best bet.

What do you think?

01 June 2011

Recently Completed

e box corner 2
Originally uploaded by Id Marks
Eszter's keepsake box, just delivered today. I love it so much, she doesn't know how close she came to getting another box. I really wanted to keep this one. Click through to Flickr to see more pictures of it.

27 May 2011

on the drawing board

on the drawing board
Originally uploaded by Id Marks
Today's dabbles.

08 May 2011

Two Things

1, I still exist, and this blog WILL see more updates in the future.

2, check out this awesomesauce artist, Charles Clary. I think I'm in love.

07 April 2011

Did we talk about this?

I don't think we did talk about it. This is a small (5x7"ish) watercolor + ink piece. Recently finished, not yet matted. I really dig it. Hopefully you do, too.

29 March 2011

First, pictures of my new sketchbook! I made this over the weekend. It took me longer than it probably should have, considering how complicated it isn't, but it's been a while since I made a book. Also, I didn't have the right glue, and had to do some dodgey substituting, and then also spray the covers in waterproofing stuff. .... don't ask.

The front cover.

The back cover. The covers are made with a fabric scrap I bought in the Ikea clearance room a long time ago. I bought it with no particular purpose in mind, but knew I would find something eventually. And, so I have. Vindication!

Laying open. Because it's a coptic binding, it opens pretty much totally flat, which is nice. The crease in the standard hardcover sketchbook is problematic. I'd been buying spiral bound for a while, but I don't really love them, they are just a compromise between not opening all the way, and using plain old loose leaves of paper. Which I might do next time.

Here's a shot of the spine, in case you were wondering what coptic binding means in practice. Each signature (group of pages) is stitched from the inside to the outside, connecting to the signatures that come before and after it. The first and last signatures are attached directly to the cover boards. It provides exceptional flexibility of the spine, and can also be used for a book of almost any thickness.

This picture shows the inside of the back coverboard, and some of my drafting tools. Not that you really needed to know about that, I just liked the shot.

I know it's been a while since I posted the current work in progress, and technically I am not really doing that now. HOWEVER! Here is a picture of my workspace as it sits right at the moment. The panels along the back are the pieces of a custom crate, the center of the desk has a belt buckle design I am finalizing with hopes of begining the actual piece today, and the rack on the right has a bunch of work on paper that needs to be matted, imaged for the portfolio, and filed. Also, some Sequential Tart review materials are there, and my new sketchbook that I made over the weekend.

All the little containers are writing implements, tools, etc. The pink things on the top / left are tape dispensers, which I have needed for a long time. (Yes, it IS "the little things" that make happy happen.)

Little file cabinet is full of more tools / utensils, paints, inks, etc. Trash can on the left, and the cubbies on the desk supports are full of random crap that I need without warning ... but then set aside without warning. It's a functional system, don't judge!

Chair is a swiveling kneeling desk chair. It's not super duper comfortable, but it does save my back and hips. And shoulders and neck. Also, it's really good for keeping my herniated cervical disk from pinching the nerve in my right hand. So ... comfort isn't always immediate gratification.

27 March 2011

Neato Graphic Artist!

Although I picked something else to preview for you here, I found this guy's portrait work to be awefully intense. I love it. I'm not a big fan of portraiture, but in this case, I'll allow it.
More drawings... on the Behance Network

28 February 2011


Originally uploaded by Id Marks
This picture shows two things...

1, that I took down a bunch of 2 year old designs and replaced them with some matted art, both mine and M. Ferner's.

2, my camera's fisheye lens is nice in many situations, but for taking good pictures of artwork, it is problematic.

27 February 2011

I finally posted my first piece to Etsy to sell. It's the one you see pictured here. If you click the Etsy link to the left, under See Me On ... it will take you to my shop, which so far has only this one posting.

But! I would be very open to suggestions. Let me know if you have ideas for improving this (or any) item I list.

Work in Progress

Originally uploaded by Id Marks
There are several pieces in the works right now, nothing finished yet. That notion of getting something done every day? Not happening. Not because I don't work every day, but because I tend to parallel process, so I'll have a bunch under way and nothing finished for ages, and then a bunch finishing up all at once.

Click through to Flickr to see more works in progress.

Also, check out Mary Golay, whose color techniques for Art Nouveau illustrations are amazing.

09 February 2011

Thar she blows ...

shell marker 1
Originally uploaded by Id Marks
Here's the other bookmark that was scratching to get out. Cut by hand, needs clean up in a big way! And, I need better saw blades.

As usual, click through to Flickr for full size, and another view.

New bookmark today!

Here's one for you cephalopod fans ...

tentacle marker 3

tentacle marker 1

tentacle marker 2

The major cuts on this were done on the scroll saw, and the interior / fine cuts were done with the hand saw. Definite good marks for speed and a clean edge. The drawback to using the scroller for this is that it uses the middle inch of a 6" blade -only- leaving most of the teeth totally unused by the time the blade is worn down to the point where I can't use it on the scroll saw anymore. I did not try using that blade in the hand saw afterward, mostly because I have a good sense of what happens when you have a blade that's sharp at both ends and dull in the middle.

Hint: It's not something good!

In an act of optimism, I am leaving my set-up set up so that when I get back from running errands, I can get right back to it. There is another design in my sketchbook waiting to be released into the world! I am really looking forward to that beautiful day in the future when my obsessions get rooms of their own, and I don't have to put away my toys if I want to eat dinner.

03 February 2011

Groundhog's Day Again

That was a little joke, y'see.

Here's today's project, another prototype bookmark. Spent a lot of time doing sketches, and this is just one of the ideas I scratched out. It was easier than yesterday's, and perhaps easier than tomorrow's. I am particularly pleased with how much this one matches the sketch.


Again, a prototype. A few technical details stand between me and a finished piece, not least the question of how to harden the metal. I find myself actually wondering if I can use a stand mixer in place of a polishing tumbler.

More pictures in Flickr, just click through the pic from here.

02 February 2011

back in the saddle

cicada bookmark

cicada bookmark

I have a provisional goal of doing one small project every day. I accept that this won't happen every day, but it's nice to get to the end of a day and have a Finished Thing to show for it. This is today's Thing -- a bookmark. This is made from copper, and not super-high-polish finished. It's a relatively crude prototype for the next project of the day. Tomorrow, I'll probably go in copper again. Eventually, when I'm happy with the prototypes, I'll move on to silver.

If you're interested to see some COOL metal bookmarks, try here.

29 January 2011

New Year / New Blog

Hi there! I know it's been pretty quiet around here. Too quiet! There are some changes coming. I would say soon, but soon is relative. Here are the highlights.
  • I'm opening two Etsy shops. One for 'fine art' — paintings, sculptures, prints, etc., and one for functional and silly items. This is taking some time, but I hope when I get it all up and running, it'll be easy for folks who are interested to browse & buy stuff I've made.
  • I'm re-doing this blog. Can't say too much about it yet, because I just don't know the details yet, but as soon as I know, I'll post it here, and then you'll know.
  • Metal work!! I have my tools and some supplies to get going with, so I'm very excited to say I'm getting back to my true love.
  • Printmaking!! I'm ready to start experimenting with this. This goes nicely with some of the metalworking I plan to do.
  • Other! It's going to be a busy year. I'm really excited about this. I've got cold glass work planned, custom-printed materials such as textiles and stationery goods, and a couple of guerrilla art maneuvers in the world. Oh, and maybe something that will lead to a book.
I realize that's a lot more exclamation points than I normally indulge in, but what can I say? That was a really good cup of coffee!!!! I mean, there's a lot going on. First, however, there is some administrative stuff to address. Because setting up an online store and a new blog isn't all about firing up the torch, sawing on stuff, or breaking out the paints. It's mostly about filling in the blanks, uploading the pictures, and double checking all the squinty little details.

For now, I'm going to leave you with this picture of the sun, moments after emerging from an eclipse, and a vague promise to post again just as soon as I can.