I was disappointed to miss last month. I was traveling once again ~ busy on Long Island attending retirement parties, family events and participating in the Sag Harbor Arts and Crafts Fair. In case you’re wondering (and even if you’re not), in spite of the pouring rain, I had a good show, with follow up opportunities.
I enjoyed Swamplandia, by Karen Russell. The story follows a family of alligator wrestlers who run an ailing tourist attraction in the Florida Everglades. Chief Big Tree and his children struggle to keep Swamplandia open after their mother, the main attraction, succumbs to cancer. They also have to contend with competition from “The World of Darkness”, the new high tech amusement park on the mainland.
It wouldn’t be a book club selection if there wasn’t a bit of the supernatural or weirdness involved in the story. Sixteen year old Ossie considers herself to be a spiritualist and believes that she has relationships with ghosts. After finding a ghost ship (really a dredge from the 1930’s), Ossie imagines herself in love with a young man who perished in an explosion and decides to run off and marry him.
The obvious inspiration for this book would be alligators. So, as I read, I checked my stash and a few suppliers – no alligators. Then Ossie and Ava stumble upon the decrepit ship with a swarm of buzzards overhead. There was my inspiration! Somehow, someway, I was determined to create a buzzard. Luckily, Kevin Potter has a great bird pancake die and it was on sale when I wanted it. I headed out to the hydraulic press with some 20 gauge sheet copper. The next challenge was how to make it look like a buzzard…
After an internet search for buzzard images, a trip to Ornamentea in Raleigh for Thomson enamels, and four torch firings of different layers and colors, I’m pretty excited with the result.
|I don't always counter-enamel, but felt this piece needed it|
I've added a bail and chain, maybe I'll add some beads, but haven’t decided if I prefer copper or silver chain.
What do you think?
Please visit book club leader, Andrew Thornton's blog here to learn more about our group
and visit other participants listed below...