Arts in the Family: A Family of Artists Just Trying to Make a Living in the Wilds of Texas


Saturday, March 17, 2012

Spring is in the Air!

We went out for a walk this morning to enjoy what appears to be the arrival of an early spring. You could almost hear the faerie folk waking up from a long winter's sleep. There may have a leprechaun or two out there as well. Happy St. Patrick's Day!!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Fossil Prop Fun

We finally got a new camera! Hooray for us!! I never reealized how accustomed I'd become to snapping pictures almost daily. With our new gizmo safely at home I decided I would break it in as soon as possible but I would go shutterbug loco with it. But I did want to show you this prop I've been making for one of the Doc Ed shows. It's going to be a nautilus fossil that I'll use for the Rock Star show which cover the making of the Edwards Aquifer starting 100 million years ago in the Mesozoic era. If you have limestone rock in you area pick it up and have a look at it. Sometimes you might find fossilized shells in it. That's because one of the key ingredients in the making of limestone are seashells. Pretty interesting stuff.

The prop pictured above has a styrofoam base covered with Crayola Model Magic Clay which as described on the package is" soft, squishy modeling material" which air dries and isn't messy to use. Not bad. It dries slowly, maybe taking a day or two to dry depending on how thick the clay is applied. In the case of my nautilus prop it has taken a two days to dry. Now I can proceed with more work on it without damaging anything I've already sculpted.

I've used that type of clay before for a variety of things from craft projects for my kids, puppets, and of course fossilized sea creatures. Before Pammy and became parents I don't know how aware I'd be of such materials so if your an artist and have no children do yourself a favor by taking a stroll down the children's art supply aisle sometime. You might find some useful as yet undiscovered art supply for yourself.

I'll be working on that prop over the weekend and, of course, will post more photos using our handy dandy new camera. Laterz!

Friday Roundup

Found another photo of the Magic Toyshop puppet theater. Kids were drawn to it like bees to honey!

This week was interesting. I sent the last of the illustrations off to Dallas to be used in a presentation for the tropical island themed puppet show that will open in the summer of 2013. It was fun touching base with my old boss from Le Theatre de Marionette. He and his wife are doing well and don't look any different then when we last saw them almost ten years ago. He and his wife are show folk so it was good talking to them and I wish there were more people like them around here.

It's seems like a long time but it was as if it was only yesterday we were putting on shows at the Texas State Fair in Dallas and doing the fairy tale shows at John's theater at the North Park Center. Fun times! Pammy and I had lunch with them last week (forgot to post about that) and we had some laughs and reminisced a bit and talked about the future. He's done so much in his life and has plenty more up his sleeve. One of the things I like to mention when talking about him is that he worked for Sid and Marty Kroft for a good long time. Wikipedia should have an entry on him if they don't. He's got some great ideas for his latest show and there's a good chance I'll get to build some of the puppets for it.

That's all for now. Happy Friday to all! Hasta manana banana.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Tis the Season ...

I finally found some photos of that great holiday show my old boss Mr. John Hardman put up every year for the holidays. That's a photo of the cast in front of the Magic Christmas Toyshop at North Park Center in Dallas. L to R. Dorin, myself and Bronwyn. That's what I call a puppet theater!

Dorin with a really wonderfully designed puppet.

Bronwyn cuddling with the narrator.

In the Christmas Toyshop set shaking hands with one of the cast. I'm on the right. There were so many puppets in the show I wish I could have photographed all of them.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Tick, Tock

Husband and wife.

This my 21st year as an actor/performer which covers a lot of ground. Around this time 21 years ago I walked in to the Woodlawn Theater absolutely unsatisfied with the direction my life was going and decided to take a chance on an improv class. My life has never been the same since. Thankfully!! There I met my future wife Pammy, learned to act and clown thanks to her and started what I felt to be my true calling: "The Stage"!

I never would have done any of it, though, were it not for Pammy's encouragement and her own love for the theater which was very infectious. Her love for the stage began very early in her life. Without her, my life would be radically different today. She introduced me into a world that felt so right for me. Through thick and thin, good times and bad we've had many grand adventures and will continue to do so, my dear. Above and below are few special moments from the past 21 years.

Raising a family.

Pammy and I dressed as pirates for Cereal Box Submarine sitting after the show with our dear friend Louise.

On the bridge at Le Theatre de Marionette.

Star Path Moonstop at the Dallas Children's Theater.

Pammy and Christy.

Pammy as Calpurnia in Julius Cesar.

Making masks.

Making set pieces.


Making puppets.

Playing circus.

Playing a doofus...

Playing circus some more!

Promoting a book.

Pammy on far right as Mama Bear and on left kneeling me as Baby Bear.

Pammy as the Christmas Princess.

A jester...

I'm not sure what...

The bohemian artist life at Blue Lake.

" Life's like a movie, write your own ending, keep believing, keep pretending..."

Monday, March 12, 2012

The Power of the Comic Strip

Anyone who believes that the comic strip has lost it's power and relevance in the modern digital age need only read Doonesbury see that is not so. The first strip to ever be awarded a Pulitzer Prize is still going strong after forty-plus years and doesn't appear to be slowing down. Just check out this week's strips to see. Enjoy!

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