Saturday, June 12, 2010

Off to the Guild School

I'm excited to be heading to Maine for the Guild School today. A whole week of friends, fun, learning new skills and loads of miniatures - what could be better?

I may be able to post while I'm there; but if not, will give a full report - with pictures - when I return.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

One more thing

I usually know when a project is finished. There always comes a point at which there doesn't seem to be anything to add. (Renoir famously said that he knew his painting of a nude was finished when he wanted to slap her bottom!)

I finished the little cottage and sent off pictures with my application to teach at the Guild School next year.

But...every time I looked at it, it just seemed to "need something".  I decided to put it away overnight and take another look the next day. Usually when I do this, I realize I have been over thinking things and leave the piece as is; but this time I knew right away what I wanted to add.  Here is the finished piece:

The weathervane is the cherry on the sundae, so to speak. It's a brass etching from Scale Link, a British company.  Here's the inside of the cottage:

Of course, a garden shed might be full of tools (ours certainly is!) , but I thought it would be more fun to make it a place where the gardener could take a break from work and have a cup of tea.  Notice the table made from a barrel.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

The Guild School

This week I'm getting ready for the IGMA Guild School, which will be held in Castine, Maine June 12-19.

It's a great event!  Imagine a whole week spent with a large group of peopple who share a passion for miniatures, in a beautiful little town on the coast of Maine. There are classes (I'm taking Mark Murphy's Japanese tea chest class), seminars and demonstrations, an auction, a sales night and a lobster dinner.
Way too much fun!

This year, I'm giving a seminar on how to make a 1:144 scale version of a real house.  I'll be using as an example the house from Manchester, MI that I made from May 27-July7 last year (see blog archive.).

I'm also submitting a proposal to teach a class next year. The project will be "Gardener's Retreat" - tiny garden shed based on small buildings I saw in Castine last summer.

It's a little more weathered looking than my houses usually are, but that look seemed appropriate for a garden shed. Here's the interior:

There will be more furniture, of course.

"Finished" pictures by Monday.

Friday, June 4, 2010

A Busy Month

I haven't posted for a while, but I have been busy!

My first project after Chicago was making a number of 1:48 scale flower arrangements for a truly magnificent house in that scale made by Frank Madder in the 1950"s, which has been acquired by the Toy and Dollhouse Museum of Kansas City.

Unfortunately, I can't post pictures because the arrangements are property of the museum, and I can't publish photos without their consent. If you happen to be in Kansas City, be sure to visit the museum - they have a wonderful collection, which includes some of my Baby Houses and one of my earliest walnut houses.

It was fun to work in a larger scale for a couple of weeks. I enjoy quarter inch scale, and sometimes do personal projects in that scale, just for fun. It was also a great chance to try working with HO scale flowers which, although reall on the large side for HO (1:84 scale) worked brilliantly for 1:48.  There were a few parts that I think I may be able to use in my scale.  Since they were kind enough to let me keep the leftover materials, I will be able to play around with them to see what I can do.