Wednesday, 29 August 2018

The Queen Has Her "Studio Cats" Again

It has been, to say the least, an eventful summer. We have had house guests for about the last 2 months and one guest, daughter Lisa, brought a special gift!

Some of you may know that Lisa, the one who lives in the Bahamas and hand dyes our Seawall Fibres yarn, puts a lot of time in as a volunteer at The Humane Society of Grand Bahama. Part of that involves being a surrogate mom for newborn kittens and she recently took a bunch that were only 3 days old! Some don't survive but two "Potcats" (what they call cats down there) did.

Now Bahamians are interesting in that they love dogs and hate cats. So the chance of a cat being adopted down there is minimal and since the organization is terribly underfunded, many are, unfortunately, euthanized.

Lisa was determined that that was not going to happen to her two "boys" so she decided to bring them to the U.S. where they have a chance.

Enter Vickie, AKA "She Who MUST  Be Obeyed"- our artist in residence. It has been several years since Vickie had the inspiration of a studio cat so she said to bring them here.
And here they are:

They are brothers and Thor is the larger. Leif is the runt of the litter but we have already ascertained that both are excellent mousers. They appear to love their new digs and have agreed to work as Vickie's inspirational "muses" in exchange for food.

And not a minute too soon since Vickie is painting a large number of "sock blanks" for the upcoming Knit City Show in Vancouver next month.

This has been our best year ever for visitors and I can assure you that on average the weather from now to the end of September is really good and whale watching is at its best. So if you are looking for a late summer escape, come to "The Neck"!

Wednesday, 15 August 2018

The Summer of Fog

If I was asked to sum up this summer to date in one word, it would be FOG! It's a simple equation: hot air + cold water= FOG.

Ever since I was a boy growing up in Halifax, I've loved the fog. It seems to muffle noise and add an air of mystery and showcases scenery in a haunting soft lens. Vistas you see every day take on another dimension.

This morning, the Lady with the agate eye and her amethyst challenged daughter went for a walk on the beach across the street. Here are some of the pics they came back with. Enjoy!

The rundown pier across the street

The beach at low tide

Daughter trying to find amethyst

This will all be covered in 10 feet of water soon

Our house from the water edge at low tide.

This is an amethyst-free zone

Looks like solid agate in the background.

And here's the amethyst Lisa finally found:

Ok, so it was on my workbench but who's  quibbling?

By lunch time, the sun was shining and the skies were blue and that vast expanse of beach was totally covered in the waters of St.Mary's Bay.

The everchanging vista is just one of the reasons I love living here. You should really check it out!

Tuesday, 14 August 2018

The Agate Eye is Hereditary- Who Knew?

This is always a busy time here at The Artist's Mark- tons of tourists visiting the shop and lots of inventory to replace.

On top of that, we have to get our wood ready to burn in the wood stove this winter (we usually go through about 2 full cords. That's 256 cubic feet of wood and that is a lot of stacking!

So last week, our granddaughter and grandson came out from Dartmouth to help. Once the wood was stacked, they went out to walk the beach in rather dense fog.

They came back with this:

Who knew that they had both inherited Vickie's "Agate Eye"?  As you can see, I was so impressed that I cut them both and I took the end piece of Erik's and tossed it in the tumbler with a load I was doing. And while it's a little "sugary" it exhibits amazing patterning.

I have managed to get two nice slices to play with and will tumble the other end piece next week.

It feels good to know that the wood is in and "The Agate Eye" has been passed on to another generation!

Monday, 13 August 2018

My New Toy- The JoolTool

My daughter Lisa, who lives in the Bahamas, is visiting and brought me a new toy. She used to do a lot of work with precious metal clay but since she started hand dying yarn, she hasn't had the time so her loss is my gain. She has given me a JoolTool! Well, she hasn't actually given it to me. She says I can use it until I die, which, according to her, better be soon!

This tool does what my various wheels do- and more! And best of all I can use it in my office in the winter when I can't get to my shop! I can't wait to try it out and when I do, I'll post some photos.

We are having an amazing summer here at The Artist's Mark and I've been very busy replacing sold stock. So if your travels take you to Digby Neck Nova Scotia, come on by and choose your free tumbled agate or jasper because everyone should own "A Piece Of The Neck"!