I had been cooped up all week, sculpting a tabletop-sized figure in clay.
Working small always tests my work ethic. Some sculptors can work in miniature and love it. Me, I love to sculpt, but my style and nature wants big, expansive gestures. So when, after four days of being diligent, good boy sculptor, my wife announces she’s working from home on Friday, there was only one thing to do.
Wilderness Photo Shoot.
After taking my wife to lunch (I’m not stupid), I loaded the props up and set out for the woods.
It was 63 degrees Friday afternoon. In Missouri, in mid-February, the first thing I see as I step into the field is a snake. A freaking little stripped snake slithering out of my path. I chose to take this as a good omen instead of worrying about Global Warming.
Field work always takes much more time than I think it will. I did not get to all the locations I had in-mind. I did manage to get some “shooting” accomplished. Enjoy.
Sometimes, I get the urge to leave some of my less expensive props on site, or even stage them at some particular location (not where auto traffic could see it, though. Don’t want accidents). I’m sure I am not the first prop artist to feel this impish impulse.
Perhaps, one day, one evening, when the sun is dying on the horizon and the purple dusk creeps from the shadowed wood, I will give in to that sibilant whisper. Yes, perhaps the whispering imp will seduce me, and I leave a Horrible peeking from behind a tree in the park.
. . . sprang from a doodle sketch, a bat dropping. The more I looked at the beast, the more I wanted to bring it to life. I kept thinking what a fearsome creature this would be, all those sharp legs and claws ripping at you, the teeth snapping at your face and throat.
Someone said he would hate to be in my head. That’s okay; it’s pretty crowded in there already.
I will leave another dropping. Perhaps one day, this creature will “live” as well.
For artistic projects, I have discipline and patience. When it comes to sketching and doodling, I’d rather just grab a pen and get going. This new category of sketches and doodles, these Bat Droppings, are almost always executed in pen from the start, so any mistake in proportion, perspective, etc., are there for all to see. I am human, mostly.
These sketches are done either to amuse my fickle mind, or to flesh out prop or sculpting ideas. They are accomplished with immediacy as the goal, to get the idea of the image or concept on paper. The page below turned out a fun prop the kids really liked.
Feel free to use any of the ideas to create your own prop. Copyright laws still apply to the art. Just play nice and give me credit if you publish it.
I never learn; always buy quality, especially when it comes to cages. Fluffy (thank you , Tom Savini) got loose last night and really raised hell with the neighbors. Thankfully, I was able to lure him back with cat food and chocolate chip cookies.
“Fluffy” as a work-in-progress, 7/2016.