Friday, February 2, 2024

It's Golden

A few days ago, I saw some posts on Facebook talking about how some people are upset about Taylor Swift and the coming Super Bowl.  I'm not going to get into all of that drama, it's just where this moment of my story begins.  I pretty much just rolled my eyes at the whole thing.  Then, made my own quick post about how I'm going to listen to Taylor Swift for the day.  I enjoy her music and it had been a while since she was the soundtrack for a day.  

As my day got going and I was listening to a bunch of her songs, one suddenly stopped me in my tracks.  I did what I usually do whenever this happens and listened to that song several times.  I was very familiar with the song, had heard it many times before, but I realized that it "hit different" now.  The song is called "Daylight" and in it she talks about what she thought love was (cruel, bad, black and white, burning red).  Then she finds a love that she realizes is golden, "like daylight".  Those lyrics are more relatable to me than I can express and they've been on my mind this week.  

That same day, I posted about my morning routine in the studio.  In that post, I talked about the "horse of the day" on the daily horse calendar that I switch over each day.

Well, when I saw yesterday's horse, I said, "ooo, a golden horse".  

Then I remembered it was also time to change over the monthly calendar on the wall.  When I saw the horse for February, I smiled and - thinking about both calendar horses - I said, "It's golden".  

I had decided that I'm going to paint my NaMoPaiMo horse chestnut.  My current favorite reference picture is a chestnut horse that has a very golden looking mane.  Not flaxen, but a lighter tone than the rest of his color.

Each of my NaMoPaiMo horses have a name (except one...) and they are given names usually based on an inspiration that happens during their creation.  Most of them are song titles.  I don't think any of them have been named ahead of time, before painting.  But I'm thinking this guy will have a name related to "Daylight".    

Daylight - Taylor Swift
(a selection of lyrics, basically the last half of the song)

I don't wanna look at anything else now that I saw you
(I can never look away)
I don't wanna think of anything else now that I thought of you
(Things will never be the same)
I've been sleeping so long in a twenty-year dark night
(Now I'm wide awake)
And now I see daylight (daylight)
I only see daylight (daylight)

I only see daylight, daylight, daylight, daylight
I only see daylight, daylight, daylight, daylight

And I can still see it all (In my mind)
All of you, all of me (Intertwined)
I once believed love would be (black and white)
But it's golden (Golden)
And I can still see it all (In my head)
Back and forth from New York (Sneaking in your bed)
I once believed love would be (Burning red)
But it's golden
Like daylight, like daylight
Like daylight, daylight

Like daylight
It's golden, like daylight
You gotta step into the daylight and let it go
Just let it go
Let it go

Tuesday, January 30, 2024

A Morning In The Studio

I keep thinking it would be fun to do a video where I do a "day in the life" type of thing, or even jst share my morning routine.  Video is still something I struggle with - though it's on my (crowded) short list of things to work on.  So how about a bit of a photo essay, instead?

After coffee, first things first, it's down the hallway to the studio.  This hallway has an "overflow" shelf of fabric, floss, projects, and some of my tatting things. 

Cracking open the door to the cave of wonders!

My routine for a little while has been this: after entering the studio, I turn on the light, and change the daily horse calendar.  

It's neat to see what the day's horse will be and it's usually inspiring (some of the pictures aren't great, but most are interesting).  Today's horse is fun!  

After checking out the horse(s) of the day, I generally reacquaint myself with how I left things the day before.

Right, this guy got a bath yesterday, in preparation to prime him.  

He is the Wycked Wynd resin, by Morgen Kilbourn.  I chose him to be my horse for this years NaMoPaiMo.  I'll be painting him chestnut.  Yesterday, after making the final selection, taking my entry selfie, he got a bath.  I also bathed another horse and planned to primer both of them last night.  Unfortunately, it seemed I got a bit of water in "Wynd", through the airhole, so he had to dry overnight.  

So, this morning's status was that he needed that coat of primer.

Over on the tack desk, I was working on two brown leather halters, sized on the Duende mold.

They are very close to being done.  I just have to attach the throatlatches on the other side, and put on the chin/under jaw pieces.  

I'm experimenting with a way of "speed building" halters and it seems to be working.  It's still not super fast, but I'm finding I can do multiples at once fairly easily.  I have a set of pieces to use as a guide when attaching hardware.  So I don't have to measure every single piece as I go, just do precise fitting toward the end - if that makes any sense.  

Last night, I also skived and prepped some lime green colored leather lace.  I plan to make a halter or two with this and also a lime green endurance set (halter bridle combo and breastplate or breast collar).

Another thing on today's plan is to start rearranging the chaos on the painting desk.  

I'd like to move my latop over there and make space for the workshop that starts Thursday evening. 

That is the Introduction to Oil Painting class held by Equine Art by Heather Bullach.  The color for the class is black, a favorite color of mine.  Some of yo may know that I took this class last year, too...  Yep, I got all of the supplies, tuned in for, I think, two of the Zoom sessions, but missed the rest.  I didn't ever actually start, because oils scare me, they still scared me and so...  yeah.  Take two!

This morning I took a quick glance at the painting chaos to see if those supplies are still handy.  Yep, there they are.  

The only thing not there are the brushes, which are in a drawer nearby.

I'm *still* scared of oils, but I'm going to go for it anyway.  

Okay, plan for the morning made, time to prime that horse!

This is my favorite primer.  I get it at O'Reilly Auto Parts.  It comes in several colors and I have all of them (black, dark grey, light grey, white, and this red).  Since Wynd will be a chestnut, I'm going with red primer.  

Out to the garage I went, after shaking the can for a few minutes....  And back in I came, because this can won't spray.    

I had a fuzzy memory of this happening before - probably with this can!  So I noted the problem on the can lid this time.  The nozzle might be fixable, or I might just take the can in for disposal, but at least I'll know now which can is the problem child.  

Moving on!  Brand new can of red primer deployed, shaken for a few minutes, back out into the garage with us.

After spraying, he spent a few minutes in the garage, then I moved him down to the basement to finish drying.  It's warmer than outside in the garage, but still cold.  

In the basement was the Dani model that I bathed and primed last night.  She will be my black oils horse.  She needs a tiny bit more prep, which I plan to do today.  

She most likely won't be perfectly prepped in time for the class, but that's fine.  I'm really trying to work on the idea of "progress, not perfection".  

After parking Wynd in the basement and bringing Dani up to the studio, I had breakfast, and did a couple of social media posts (I'm trying to get better about remembering to do that).



(And I'm also writing this blog post!)

I took a late morning break to go do my farm chores: feed Bo, let the chickens out, and check on everyone out there.  A friend stopped by briefly on her way to town.  She brought back a couple of egg cartons, a piece of blueberry bar she baked, and we had brief chat about the ups and downs of being a self employed maker.  She does incredible wood working and we have talked about doing some laser collaborations.

After I hit "publish" here, I need to box up an order from my Etsy shop and head to the post office.  I sold a classic scale western bridle!  

That's what went on this morning in the studio!  

Saturday, January 27, 2024

Horses In Every Room

For many years, the only place I had model horses was in my studio room.  Without going into details, I'll just say that's the only place the person I was with wanted them to be. 

Well, after all of that was over, I had a few friends tell me they thought I should have "model horses in every room".  I thought I'd share the current location of most of my horses...

This is in the living room:

(Having the majority of my collection OUT where I can see them makes me so very happy.)

This is in the guest room, which is also my photo studio:

And then there's the latest version of my studio room.  Now I don't have to keep my whole collection in there.  So this room primarily has horses that are in work in some way or another.  Such as:

Resins (and some newer OFs up top that I just like looking at)

Customs in progress


And currently in use tack models

I do have some of my collection in the studio room, like most of my stablemates, in their holders that I made:

That's not nearly all of my model horses.  I have many stablemates, and others, that are still packed away, and many more that are out that I didn't share here.  I have more shelves and totes full of body models in the living room, along with several NIB horses.  

Currently, there is one horse in the kitchen bar area, one I'm working on prepping.  

So right now the only room that doesn't have model horses in it is the bathroom (well and the bedroom/basement - both downstairs - but sometimes I do some prep work down there, too).  

They are in nearly every room - close enough! 

Tuesday, January 23, 2024

Never Have I Ever, Model Horse Edition

I saw this new fun challenge on Facebook in the last day or two and thought it would be fun to go back to do it at some point.  Well, I just saw it turned into a blog post at Braymere Custom Saddlery and I though, "what a great idea!" 

So, I'm gonna do it, too!

Let's gooooo! 

Owned a Lady Phase model:  Yes, I have two of them currently.  Funny thing, the first one was bought as a body, but I fell in love with her.  She's in rough shape, but there was just something about her color.  So she's been a tack model, I've thought about trying to restore her someday.  

The other one is a body, I did a pretty drastic custom job on her a number of years ago, turning her into a gallop, just before all four off the ground.  I named her Pre-Flight.  I did paint and hair her, but during the move from Japan she got pretty messed up, so I plan to strip her, redo her sculpting, which was rushed and rough, and go again.  Here's a picture partway through her creation:

Gone to Breyerfest: I've only been to one Breyerfest.  My very first, and only time - so far, was in 2019, almost immediately after moving back from Japan.  I had SO much fun and declared I'd be planning to go every year...  Yeah, about that (2020, etc...)  I attended virtually in 2020, 21, and 22, but skipped last year altogether.  I'm hoping to go this year.  

Here's Appa, my truck, in his sweet parking spot, right out front, at the CHIN, haha:

Touched a vintage decorator: No, I haven't done that one.  One point!

Owned a run of < 100: Surprisingly (to me) I have two of them.  

Lionesse, 2014 Live Show Benefit model, run of approximately 35:

Golden Sunset, from the Ponies and Palm Trees collector club event, run of 60:

Customized a model:  I've done a bunch of them.  For fun, here was my custom crew at a live show in early 2015.  I didn't paint the classic Arabian mare, but did everyone else:

Squeezed a blind bag: I've squeezed many blind bags!  But don't seem to have a picture handy for this one.

Owned an Adios model:  You know...  I *think* I have one in one of my body boxes.  Pretty sure...  

Sold all my models:  No!  Second point!

Gone to Breyerwest: I've been to one Breyerwest in Oregon in 2017 (which I flew to from Japan) and one in Denver in 2022.  I was supposed to go in 2023 but a bad winter storm said no.  Will be trying again this year...  

At BW 2017, I entered my old guy, Reckless, in the A Good Vintage Show and he won a ceramic tile.

At BW 2022, my world traveling Chewie visited with The Badger and... friends?  

Stood in the SR tent line:  Yep, just the once, in 2019.

Spent too much money at CHIN room sales:  I've only been able to witness that whole spectacle once and I don't think I spent too much.  So...  one point?  Half a point?  I guess it's one point.  Third point!

Requested a sales list via snail mail: I'm not sure if I did this, but I did request s/d lists - remember those?  Does that count?  I think it should count...

Owned a decorator: I haven't own an OG decorator, from back in the day, but I have a handful of... "modern" ones.  One of my favorites is this guy.  He has his own blog post:

Conga-ed a mold: My biggest conga, outside of Smoky (haha) is Halla/Bolya.  I added several of them to my collection at that BF in 2019:

Owned a traditional Alborozo: I have not ever owned one of them.  Fourth point! 

Talked to my models: All the time.  Don't judge me!  Move along, move along...

Gone to a live show:  Yeah!  I've been to a handful of them, but not nearly as many as I'd like.  Four years in Japan, followed by a few years of pandemic.  I'm hoping to possibly make it to a few shows this year. 

My favorite of the shows I've been to was The Jennifer Show in 2019.  Here's Reckless again, still winning stuff as a decrepit old man (it was a fun class for tack made by Jennifer Buxton.  She had made his halter for me as a Christmas present - which made me cry - and this also made me cry.  She's so mean!  *wink* hahaha) 

Also memorable at that Jennifer Show was the "Big Dreams" class, where I trotted out my Epic Stagecoach project in all its ridiculous glory.

Shown in a photo show: Yes, many times!  Like this banger of a bad performance entry...  

Met the real horse that inspired the model:  You know, it seems if I went to a Breyerfest, this should have happened, but I don't remember it.  So I'm going to say no.  Fifth point!

Collected mini whinnies:  I do have several of these.  Most of them are intended to be customized, but we won't talk about that.  It's still a "collection", right?

Accidentally bought a model I already owned:  Yes...  I did this, once.  I bought another Laag (dapple grey Pacer) because he was labeled as a Before The Wind (similar, but not, and different halter color) so now I have two of Laag... that was years ago and I'm still not sure what to do with him.   *eyes the dremel*

Owned a Khemosabi model:  Breyer = no.  Sarah Rose traditional = no.  Sarah Rose mini = yes!  I have two of them.  One was my 2020 NaMoPaiMo horse, who I named Sound the Bugle, the other is still unpainted.  

Referred to Khemosabi as "Khemosausage":  I think I did this once, yes.  Poor guy!  

Won a Breyerfest raffle model:  Nope!  Sixth point!

Collected variations of the same model:  Listen, I have 3 Danis and all of them are different, okay??  I did finally decide the whole thing was ridiculous and spray primer one of them.  But then I won one (signed by Morgen!) and I was back to 3 OFs. 

Bought a model I didn't like because it was rare: Hmmm, I feel like I've done this.  For a brief time I bought every club model and such that I could.  Remember when the collector club models would sell out in a half hour?  Pepperidge Farm remembers and so do I and I bought some of those and now I seem to be stuck with them.  Then I started being a bit more selective.  I'm gonna say yes, I've done this.   

It's getting late and I'm getting loopy, must keep going!

Let my model horse "fight":  So, my mom told me stories about how she and her friends had the Fighting stallions back in the day and would actually bash them into each other to have them fight like real stallions.  I haven't ever done that.  I feel like this might be a point.  Seventh point?

Witnessed the aftermath of model horse "dominoes":  Yep, been there, done that.  

Owned a Proud Arabian stallion mold:  Yes!  I have one and his name is Devil In Disguise.  He's the light dapple grey and he was a childhood favorite.  The only pictures I have handy are when the poor guy modeled some of my old duct tape tack - which is almost as old as he is.

Owned a resist dapple grey: Okay, I'm feeling kinda dumb right now...  Maybe I have one?  Is this one?  Is my PAS above one?   I'll say this point is in limbo.

I bought this PAM at an antique store for $35 a long, long time ago.

Owned a run of < 25: That's a no.  Eighth point!

Met "Bloaty": Another no.  Ninth point!  Jeez, I'm racking them up all of a sudden.  That's fine, less picture hunting, I gotta go to bed!

Owned a Vintage Club model:  No, not yet...  there are a few I want: Quinn, Starlight, and of course, Sandman.  I'd like to get Licorice and Jellybean and the Gold Charm Native Dancer, too.  But I don't collect OFs...  (ha)  Oh yeah, Tenth point!

Taken a model on vacation:  Whoooo, have I!  I really would like to go to bed, so I'll try to rein in the story telling and pictures (maybe I should do an updated post or three about his travels anyway).  But my Chewie resin has been with me to numerous countries on 4 continents, first unpainted and later painted.  Here's a favorite picture of him at Hirosaki castle, in Japan: 

Owned a blue model: I have several of them, blue is my favorite color.  I'm going to cheat (?) a bit for a picture and use one I recently shared on here of a blue bay custom I painted:

Read this whole list:  Yes, I did!!

Whew!  This was an undertaking, but FUN!  Let's see, my total was apparently ten points, with a wiggle of a point or two either way, I think.  Some potentially sketchy answers along the way, but, I made it through!  

Thanks to Sputter Moo Productions for the fun list and to Jennifer Buxton of Braymere Custom Saddlery for the inspiration to turn my answers into this novel.  I hyper focused on this, starting at about 9:30pm and it's 12:10am right now.

I need a long nap.  It's (past) time for bed!