Back in time…

Today at work, some colleagues were sharing pics of themselves and each other as kids.  And it occurred to me that I don’t have many photos of myself from childhood scanned, let alone online.  So that was my project tonight!

My 2nd Birthday @ Pier 39, Oct 1980

My 2nd Birthday @ Pier 39, Oct 1980

It seems that in the era of film and photo processing, my parents may have deliberately taken photos of me and my older brother together, possibly to save money?  There are hardly any pictures of me as a child without my brother.  Good thing I like him.  🙂

1982

1982

Also, I have evidence that bangs and knickers may have been little girl trends in the early 1980s.

March 1983 - Pirates of the Carribean

March 1983 – Pirates of the Caribbean

It seems as though my love of pirates started at an early age.  They’re not pictured, but here I am at age 4 at the Pirates of the Caribbean in Disneyland.

Skipping right over the awkward years…

Freshman Class Photo

Freshman Class Photo

Apparently did not own a hairbrush when I entered high school.What you can’t see in the above photo is that the bottom half of my head was shaved.  And I was probably wearing Doc Marten’s.

Drill Team Photo 1992 - 14 years old

Drill Team Photo 1992 – 14 years old

And yes, the same girl who shaved half her head was also on the drill team.  I think you can actually kinda see the shaved part in this picture!  Just above my left ear.  Why did we take our team photos at night?  Ah, the mysteries of teenage-hood…

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Spring Garden

Ah, spring…  It was 63 degrees in our backyard at 7:00, which is pretty remarkable in our corner of San Francisco.  And the garden has been so lovely recently.  It was overdue for a photo shoot.  Not much to say here, but enjoy my pretties!

The back garden (click to enlarge):

The front garden (click to enlarge):

You Learn Something New Every Day

What  Privateers, Free Cities, and Heavy Metal Bands Have in Common

This is the most random post, but also the post most closely aligned with my original vision for this blog – Curation.  I’m not even going to write much here, but you’ll get the point.

Item the first: https://www.onekingslane.com/product/20664/1305939

Screenprint of Danzig

Screenprint of Danzig

Item the second: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Danzig_(band)

Danzig at Sweden Rock Festival 2010

Danzig at Sweden Rock Festival 2010

Item the third: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_City_of_Danzig

Flag of the Free City of Danzig

Flag of the Free City of Danzig

Item the fourth (bringing us full circle): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_von_Danzig_(ship)

The Ship Peter von Danzig

The Ship Peter von Danzig

I am bemused that the screen print that caught my eye, which I thought might be a pirate ship, was of this 15th century ship, which once carried sea salt (a subject of much enchantment for me, thanks to Kurlansky’s book Salt: A World History) and later became a privateer with a letter of marque (a subject of much enchantment for me, thanks to … well … everything, but especially Sherry’s book Raiders and Rebels: A History of the Golden Age of Piracy).  But to get there… I was reminded of the band Danzig (I briefly listened to them in my “I’m gonna be just like my cool older cousin” tween years), and learned of the Free City of Danzing, which was enchanting because of the fact that in my beloved Game of Thrones (or, more accurately, the “A Song of Ice and Fire” saga) there are “Free Cities” like Qarth.

And now you have learned something(s?) new today.  And I have finally achieved my dubious goal of curation.  Curiosity for the win!

Back to Bzzzzzing

Now that my Khaleesi costume is in the history books, I’m back to experimenting with my beloved bees. I got another bee stamp, and some new inks and other goodies to experiment with. So tonight I put together a proof sheet of all my stamp & ink combos.

One crucial error: I did it on medium-weight drawing paper instead of 140-lb watercolor paper. Oops. But I figure I’ll just proof my favorites again on the real paper, while possibly also testing out various patterns before I attempt to put all the elements together on my nice big watercolor paper. You can’t really appreciate the embossed texture on any of these images other than the copper bees in the lower right. But let me know your favorite colors of honeycombs and bees!

Close-up of Proof Sheet

Close-up of Proof Sheet

 

Becoming Khaleesi, Part 5: The Event

When my dragons are grown, we will take back what was stolen from me and destroy those who wronged me! We will lay waste to armies and burn cities to the ground!

The night of the SideReel Game of Thrones Season 3 Premier Screening finally arrived!  For those who have been following my earlier posts in the “Becoming Khaleesi” series (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4), you’ll recall that this was the big event my costume was for.  Finally I would get to become Khaleesi, and I would have dragons!!

We held the event at the Variety Screening Room, which is an awesome venue.  There’s a lounge, bar, bathrooms, a giant statue of the Kung Fu Panda, a popcorn machine, and 49-seat stadium style auditorium, with full on projection, sound, curtain, the works.  Plus, a portion of the (very reasonable) rental fee goes to the Variety Children’s Charity, so we felt pretty good about renting from them!  I should note that the people running this venue are incredibly nice and helpful.  I so want to have events here again!

My colleague (the crazy one who started the GoT photoshopping silliness that inspired this party) and I arrived at the venue just after the catering did; we delivered the booze, got into costume, and greeted the 30 or so Sidereelers and guests who descended upon the venue, some in costume, some not (boo).  Finally I got to reveal my costume!  Alas, fair readers, you will weep to discover that some of the following pictures are blurry and/or dark.  Womp womp.  But in the close ups you can actually see my purple contact lenses – yay!

The Reveal

The Reveal

Some other details included trading cards of the sigils we all had created using Join the Realm, and a beautiful poster of the sigils, created by our senior visual designer.  Seriously, click on that thumbnail – it’s awesome.  Another of our designers put together an awesome pre-show animation of these sigils, projected on the screen while we drank and ate before the screening.

Welcoming the Audience

Welcoming the Audience

After herding the group into the auditorium and welcoming them to the screening, we watched a few warm up videos:

Then we introduced the rules of the drinking game.  Drink whenever you:

  • See a nipple
  • Hear “Jon Snow”
  • Hear “king” or “queen”

And finally the screening began…  What can we say about “Valar Dohaeris”?  It caught us up with several main characters, but neglected many others.  The GoT universe is vast, and one 55 minute episode can’t begin to cover all of the story lines.  But this post is not really about the episode, is it?  So lets just say there was lots of drinking, shouting at the screen, and general happiness that a beloved series was back on.  And then it was time for the after party…

We literally paraded up and down Market Street in our costumes, with Khaleesi leading the charge, foam sword in hand.  People stopped us to take our picture, or to take pictures with us.  It was amazing.  We walked from 2nd St. to 4th St., then doubled back to New Montgomery to House of Shields.  Sidereelers have a track record of getting thrown out of here, but we went for it anyway – Game of Thrones and House of Sheilds just seemed right together.

Khaleesi Leading the Parade Down Market Street

Khaleesi Leading the Parade Down Market Street

All that’s left to say is that a good time was had by all… especially Khaleesi:

In the wee hours, laughing myself silly

In the wee hours, laughing myself silly

“Because love is so enormous, the only thing you can think of doing is swallowing the person that you love entirely.”

“Because love is so enormous, the only thing you can think of doing is swallowing the person that you love entirely.”

Maurice Sendak’s posthumously published final work, My Brother’s Book is a beautiful and poigniant work of art.  I learned of it through my new favorite blog, Brain Pickings, and immediately ordered a copy.  It is quintessential yugen: beautiful, enigmatic, and melancholy.

I’m posting about it today, because I would love love love to have a print of any of these gorgeous watercolor illustrations.  Google searches have failed me.  If you, beloved reader, ever should happen to know of a source for a print from this book, please share it with me in the comments.

Becoming Khaleesi, Part 4

I am Daenerys Stormborn and I will take what is mine with fire and blood.

Another edition in the Becoming Khaleesi series.  If you haven’t already read Part 1, Part 2, or Part 3, let this be your official spoiler alert!  And before we go any further, it would probably be good to refer back to my original reference image, and this additional reference image.

Dany in the Red Waste

Dany in the Red Waste

The costume is complete.  I won’t post a pic with all the accoutrements in place until the night of the party, but in this post you’ll get a peek at almost all the accessories, and the finished costume top and bottom – on me!

Let’s start with the wig and work our way down, shall we?  I got this wig on Amazon, and it’s pretty awesome, but man it was frizzy.  It definitely needed some product to tame it.  A little of my sons’ detangler, and some of my Frizz-Ease finishing creme, and it’s looking moderately better.  Still way too shiny, but meh.  I think I’ve done all I can do here.

Wig before & after

Wig before & after

Moving on to the gloves.  Dany wore glove/gauntlet things in the original reference image I was working from, but they’re really fashioned from leather straps wound around her hands.  I ordered some brown leather gloves from Amazon, and set about “distressing” them using my hammering technique from the chaps construction.  They got pretty jacked up, in a good way.

Gloves before abuse, and gloves after abuse

Gloves before abuse, and gloves after abuse

Boots.  It was hard to get a good image of Dany’s boots, but meh.  I had a pair of camel boots I wasn’t too fond of.  And the oil stains they had from cooking in them gave me the idea to further distress them by just rubbing oil on them.  Bam!  Instantly thrashed boots!

Oiled boot & un-oiled boot

Oiled boot & un-oiled boot

I also added a crucial underpinning – camel leggings.  Crucial because I finished the inside of the chaps with spray paint, which is not at all comfortable against the skin.  So, without further ado, here is me in the completed top and bottom, leggings, and the boots (prior to distressing).

Top, bottom, leggings, and boots (pre-distressing)

Top, bottom, leggings, and boots (pre-distressing)

So… I’ll put it all together – what you see here, plus wig, gloves, purple contact lenses, and hopefully my penannular brooch – on Friday.  Pics to follow!

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