Monday, February 23

Gibbous Glory

 Just before the sun.

My mind stirs with thoughts of the day.
Pitter pattering around.

My mind is restless
my body too.

Slumber leaves me as I awake to the fresh dawn.

I'm flanked by two souls. One gently pressed against my leg and the little one nuzzled in the crook of my arm. Their bodies are warm, but the love we share blankets me in the true warmth and love. I don't dare move from our bed. Both enjoying their dreams I move as little as possible as not to disturb their peace. 

But I am ready to tackle the day. Yesterday I felt the ideas start to swell up. Swarming my thoughts and taking over my movements, but I wasn't quite ready for them. The daily rituals had amassed around me. In my years of work I've learned that to properly pay my time to fresh thoughts I must first prepare myself and my space. 

Clear up old tasks. 
Tie loose ends.

Tidy the studio and ensure there are no distractions. 
The ideas require full dedication.

Last evening was spent doing just that. I organized the studio. Finishing up orders that were awaiting me. I put aside bits and pieces I've started, and the boys helped pick up the house. So today, I'm ready for anything. I find that on these days, I often awake earlier than usual. My body full of excitement well before my mind is consciously aware of what the day will bring. 

But these two beside me stop me from springing to life. Instead I put my mind to what the day will hold. I feel the urge to write it down. Document my thoughts. I prefer a good old fashioned pen and paper, and at this point I almost wish I had moved, but instead I find myself now click-clacking away on my phone. Although this isn't my favorite writing method it will do for now. As a boy stirs to my left and presses closer my arms start to numb from my position. A dog stirs at our feet hoping this movement means I will complete my morning ritual and feed them, but to his dismay, I'm happy so I let it be.

As the sun brightens the sky I let the idea overwhelm my brain. Taking each small space it can and soaking into my thoughts and memories. 

The idea hasn't quite shown itself to me yet. I feel it's presence, but it's shy and hiding. Sometimes ideas are like this for me, I know I'm on the brink of something exciting, but I don't know what it it is yet. My body feels it before my mind thinks it. 

The idea, it's something about myself. 
About my work. 
About what I am drawn to. 
It's unique. 
Different than the norm. 
I'm different than the norm.
 I've never been one to fit in. 
This is something that has cause me heartache in the past, but something I wholeheartedly embrace now. 

This isn't new.
It's always been.


I bring you back 25 years.

It's my 5th birthday, and my mother takes me to a local feed store. 
It smells of alfalfa and timothy hay. 
Pellets and grass. 
My allergies hate me as soon as we step foot in the parking lot.

On the long walk to the front door there are stacks of tall wire cages to my left.
Worn and rusty. 
Not perfectly rectangular anymore, but useful just the same.

Each of them contain a handful of this springs gems. 
Litters of little long eared, fluffy tailed critters. 
My rosy retrospective thinks there were 100's maybe even 1000's to choose from.

Any variety you wish.
Midnight black.
Black and white spotted.
 Mottled brown and white.
 Variegated tan.
I'm sure there was even a neon pink one. 

Bunnies so small, even with a 5 year old stature I could fit one in the palm of my hand.

My mother says I can pick one out for my birthday.
I can only imagine the squad of delight that arose from my next breath.

Now, if you have ever spent any time with a 5 year old, even a minutia you would know allowing them to pick out one bunny from this lot would be Hell.

But as I said before, 


I took one look around and quickly settled on the big fat all white beady red eyed momma.

I'm sure my mother wasn't shocked.
I have no doubt this wasn't the first time I pulled a stunt like this. Picking exactly the opposite of what she had envisioned. I'm sure she thought we would come home with a sweet little tiny bundle of lagomorph joy. 
She tried ever so sweetly to sway me to get one of the babies making her dream come true. 
So fresh and fragile they were. Hippy hopping around with exuberance.

She asked if I wanted to hold a baby. 
She asked if I was sure.
"Isn't this one cute."
"Oh look at that one, it has floppy ears!"
She tried everything, but I could not and would not be persuaded.

She gave in, and I picked up that fat bunny under it's chest with both hands. 
I could barely carry it.
It's postpartum belly spilling out of  my small grasp.

I was in love. 

This thing about me hasn't changed.
It never will.

Some say I beat to the rhythm of my own drum.
Some say I'm special.
Some say I'm different.

And I'm happy with that.
Life is too short to be just like everyone else.

This aspect of me.
The way I perceive things.
The way I see and conceptualize life. 

I see it everywhere. 
I see it in my work.

I put colors together that others shy away from.
I pick forms and shape things to almost perfection, but never perfect. 
I like organization with a dash of chaos.

Now the boys have awaken. 
Their eyes flashing open.
Their bodies stretching and turning. 
Kisses coming from every direction.

 A dog laying on my chest trying ever so hard to be patient, but his beating breath and swaying tail tell a different story. 
I can no longer postpone my rising. 

♥ Carin

Friday, February 20

Sunday, February 8

On Trusted Wings... a Second Season

A few months ago I finished my first On Trusted Wings piece.

It sat with me in the studio for a long while.

I didn't show her to anyone. 

I was in a magical trance. 

A harmonious dance between spirit and self.

Between art and artist. 


After a few days I allowed myself to wonder what other pieces this eagle shape would adorn.

What shape it would take, and what it was capable of creating. 

A few more pieces were born of it, and then it fell quite for awhile.

They stopped speaking to me as loudly or as clearly. 

Maybe I allowed life to get the best of me.

Chaos ensued, and I didn't have the real time these pieces demanded.

So I listed and sold the first batch of the On Trusted Wings series <---- read about the motivation behind the original work here. 


As soon as I listed them, I regretted it.

Not because I was sad to see them find homes, not that pieces themselves weren't magnificent, but I knew that I should have dug deeper.

There was more to it.

There was still a spark. They were talking, maybe in a whisper, but they had important things to say.

I felt like the series was half done.

Half visited.

Half explored.

Half assed.


So although a little discombobulated (as life seems to be at times).

I finished the series. 

It took a second season, but they are beautiful just the same.

♥ Carin

shop here. 

Friday, February 6

Wednesday, February 4

This is Love

This is Duffy.

Duffy was very loved.

A beautiful soul.

That I hope I honored in the memorial piece created for him. 

Photo courtesy of Duffy's human.

I started with a hand cut silhouette of him wearing his lovely bandana. 

I added a hand set river rock below. 

A little detail along the side of the bezel reads "FLY WITH THE STARS." 

On the back I've etched his paw print. 

And stamped an excerpt from a lovely poem.


Photo courtesy of Duffy's human.

RIP Duffy. 


Monday, February 2

33 Complete

At the end of 2014, I was feeling drained creatively. 

I felt like I was pulling at strings and fishing for ideas, but I was coming up short handed. 

I was felt focused on the business aspect of the job, and less on the creative side. 

The thing is, the creative side makes the business side work. 

When I'm not coming up with new ideas or I don't feel inspired it's catastrophic in so many ways.

I tried taking breaks.

Getting fresh air.

Many, many things.

But none of it seemed to get me out of the rut I was in.

Towards the end of the year I was presented with an opportunity to join a lovely group of artists in making one earring a day.

The idea at first sounded preposterous.

How am I supposed to fit this in my already crazy busy schedule?
Why would I focus on "playing" when the work seemed to be suffering.

But as you can read when I started the project (here.), something deep inside me knew I needed this.

My creativity was being suffocated by the business, by the sales, by the demands, and to save it all I needed to save myself. 

So I gave in.

With no holding back I just created. 

I didn't worry about what others would think, what I would think, or if it would sell. 

I just made to make. 

And it felt so incredibly good. 

I don't know exactly when or how it happened, but along the way I fell in love with these sweet little buffalo. 

They became the staple of the work for the past month.

They inspired me. 

I loved their shape,
their form, 
and their versatility. 

I used them in so many, many ways.

They almost began a little life of their own.

Over the past few days, I've been thinking about what the next 11 months of this project will bring.

It's already brought me so much.

I can say without a doubt it has gotten me out of the rut that I was in.

But not just that.

It has given me 1,000s of ideas so far.

Some of them crazy.

Most of them won't work,
but some of them do.

And when they do, they are magical.

I want the next 11 months to be as great as the first. 

So I'm pushing myself. 


Beyond the buffalo.

I feel called to leave him behind for now. I'm sure he'll appear in works in the future as he gave me strength, I will never forget him.

But I feel called to try more.

So today, the first really February earring.

I bring to you, in true Pacific Northwest fashion.

The salmon.

He may not be a buffalo.

But he's the new buffalo.

May he  bring all of us love and happiness in February!

♥ Carin


P.S. The Earring a Day items from January have all been discounted! shop them here.