Sunday, April 29, 2012

Greetings from new laptop land

So, my poor old Powerbook is on it's last legs.  It doesn't hold a charge, it doesn't plug in right, it can't talk to most of the internet because it's old and doesn't understand kids these days, and can't multitask to save it's life.  So, last night, in a fit of spenditude, I bought a new 13-inch Macbook.

It's so wee.  And fast.  And the trackpad works in the opposite direction.

I have yet to transfer all my files, as it got hung up last night with "1 minute remaining" for over an hour.  Apparently, it's a common thing.  There's probably one corrupted file somewhere, causing the whole thing to short out.  I'll back up my old dinosaur onto an external hard drive, and then move files manually.  Ahh, technology.

If you were my new laptop, this would be your view right now.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012


So, a lot of people who go to Ren Faires like to wear wings and flit about like a fairy. I get it. Fairies (as we know them nowadays) are cute. Wings look fun. Fairies don't have to be historically accurate. Being a mythical creature for a while is entertaining.

 I don't feel like a fairy. I'm too big for wings, and I'm not... cute. I can behave in cute ways, but they're not airy, pretty sorts of cute. They're weird, grubby, poke-the-dead-thing-with-a-stick cute. I'm prone to biting. If I had an extra appendange, it'd probably be a tail.

 This is the only pic I got last weekend- next time I go, I'm going to have a proper photoshoot. And I'm switching out the fox ears and fox tail for something more ratlike. Fairies are cute. Goblins have more fun.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

I'm a professional.

This weekend, I attended a conference for outdoor educators. Most of them are patchouli-lovin, dreadlock-wearin, jam-band-listenin, earth-toned hippies. They're good people, I just don't quite match.

I wore precisely zero earth tones all weekend, yanno.

These conferences are at residential campsites. There is a talent night. My talents are not suitable for such a thing, so I dressed for the occasion instead. In summer, I am Chieftainess of a small island country populated by 3rd through 6th graders- our country is called Turgundy. I wore my regalia, plus a coat.

What? You don't engage in this sort of foolishness at YOUR professional conferences?

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Homework: Artistic Inspiration

So, I'm going out of town tomorrow for a conference, so I don't have time to do this properly, so this will have to suffice for now.

This is what I do in the summer.  I'm one of the makeup artists.  This will be my 10th season.

Pageant of the Masters

Seriously, click it.  You know you want to.

I have to go pack.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

New eyeballs

I will preface this by saying that I like the color of my eyes.  They're mostly a sort of crocodile green, with a grey limbal ring and a golden brownish around the iris.  Many people seem surprised when they realize they're not brown.  My driver's license says they're green, I think they're probably more hazel.  

Sometimes, you just want to be someone else for a while.  So, I ordered some contacts from Korea.  Koreans, if you are unaware, are fond of something called "circle lenses," which make your iris look much larger than it actually is.  They come in a range of diameters, from "human irises might be this big" to "holy crap are you a shark?", and in all sorts of colors and patterns.  

I have no problem sticking things in my eye for fun.  What the hell?  Let's try on new eyes.

Giant pic of my head, only because I don't have a good closeup of this pair.  These are EOS 3-tone V304 Turquoise Blues.  They're the smallest of the lot, at 14mm, and the limbal ring is a rather subtle chocolate brown.  A lot of my natural color shows on this one.  It's ever so faintly lighter than my natural color, so the effect is interesting in person.  I am a terrible photographer.  Also, the zit on my chin... was that there all day?  Anyone else think it's weird that you notice things in pictures that you never notice in the mirror?

My patented self-portrait shot.  These are EOS J211 Cotton Blues.  They're very dark on me, and also larger than the 3-tones.  These are 14.2mm, and are definitely creeping towards "noticeably unnatural." Still, kind of fun.  I find that, when these drift around, can cause a very bizarre "wall-eyed" look.  Whatever, I'm schmexy, no matter what direction my eyes are pointing.  

Speaking of unsettling.  I got these expressly for days when I'm feeling Gobliny.  These are GnG/Dueba Crystal Diamond Blacks, and they're huuuuuuuge.  They're 15mm.  When I'm not making my Tante-face, they cover a ridiculous amount of my sclera.  The fact that you can see the brown part of my eye next to the pupil is sort of strange.  If it was darker out, and my pupils were dilated, it would be very Jaws-like.  These are not for wearing to the grocery store.  These also make my dark circles look magnificent (and yes, I'm wearing concealer.  This is the "after" shot!).  Holy cripes, are those getting bad.  It's hereditary.  I should probably start saving money to get those fixed.  Also visible in this pic- my silver fringe hair with the weird bend in the middle.  You'd think the bend would grow out as the hair gets longer, but it doesn't.  The rest of my silver hairs act like normal hairs... the one up front?  Nope.  It's got a mind of it's own.

Renaissance Pleasure Faire/ Southern is currently in full swing, and I'm going on the 21st.  I'm going to be debuting my new Goblin attire (for which I will have appropriate eyes, yes?).  This is, of course, provided that I finish sewing.  I have a professional conference to go to this weekend, so I'm cutting it close.

I have yet to finish my jewelry- but I have all the parts, at least.

What?  Diamonds aren't my thing.

Sunday, April 8, 2012


So, Lady Bethezda suggested that we all post something about Siouxsie and her influence on us all.  I will admit, I was late to the Goth Party, and was unaware of her for a very long time.  I would listen if she was on the radio, and of course appreciated her style if I saw her picture somewhere, but I didn't really put two and two together until relatively recently in my life.


Siouxsie was involved in one of my favorite life moments, and I didn't realize it until much later.

That life moment is the ballroom scene in "Batman Returns."  I recall exactly the moment that I saw it in the theaters.  IT CHANGED MY BRAIN.  I can't even explain it.

Embedding is turned off. You know you want to watch this scene.

Can we even list the number of ways this was the best big-screen Batman flick?  It's almost overly awesome.

It was a Tim Burton film before Tim Burton films started looking like caricatures of Tim Burton films.  You can't argue with the bleak, melancholy beauty of his version of Gotham.  The soft greys, the snow... yes.  The visual beauty of Batman Returns only serves to highlight how awful the Joel Schumacher versions were.  Horrible.  HORRIBLE.

It was a Danny Elfman soundtrack.  You know you love you some Danny Elfman.  Don't even lie.

Michael Keaton is my favorite Batman.  He's can deliver the comic-booky cheese line without it sounding ridiculous.  Every other Batman has been too over-the-top.  I can't get over Christian Bale's growly foolishness.  It makes me laugh every time.  Val Kilmer (as much as I adore him) probably wasn't acting.  Let's not talk about George Clooney.  We're all still embarrassed for you, George.  Gah, I miss seeing Michael Keaton on screen.  Where did you go, Michael?

Stan Winston's Penguin makeup was to die for.  It was cartoony and believable and Danny DeVito sold it utterly and it's Stan Winston shaddup already!

Michelle Pfeiffer's Catwoman is the ONLY big-screen Catwoman, as far as I'm concerned.  I'm already disappointed in Anne Hathaway, and I haven't even seen her yet.  Sit down, Anne.  Halle Berry?  You too.    THE VINYL SUIT.  Holy crap.  You know I'm right.  Do you remember how insanely hot Michelle Pfeiffer was in that movie?  Go watch that clip again.  I'll wait.  In my head, it will always be Eartha Kitt or Michelle Pfeiffer.

Christopher Walken.  Do we have to discuss this?  God, he's good at being creepy.

Paul Reubens and Diane Salinger as the Cobblepots?  The casting for this entire movie was just too fantastic.

The ballroom scene is, in my opinion, the sexiest scene in the movie.  There's some hot smokin vibes coming off both of them when she comes down the stairs.  The noselicking scene is too right-on-the-surface.  The stair scene is so much more undercurrenty.

And nestled in the center of this Nest of Amazing is Siouxsie, purring her way through the tie-in song "Face to Face."

Everyone's turned off embedding! Click for a Siouxsie video

I get a little chill when the strings come in at 0.11.  The video is like a time capsule of 1992, isn't it?  So weird.  I appreciate that it feels like Batman Returns, without any overt clips from the movie (there are in a different version of this video, and it feels like being bludgeoned with marketing).  It's Batman-flavored, instead of being GO SEE BATMAN.

Danny Elfman composed the song (you knew that), so it fits seamlessly into the score.  But it still sounds like a Siouxsie and the Banshees song.  I can't imagine anyone else performing it.  Seriously.  Try to sing that as an Oingo Boingo tune in your head.  It just sounds wrong.  I think that if I heard the song covered, it would make my head hurt.

It's arguably the best "soundtrack song" off of any of the first four Batman soundtracks.  The first film feautred Prince's "Partyman," which was nice (I love Prince), but just felt out of place.  Come on, Jack Nicholson doesn't dance to Prince.  "Batman Forever" featured Seal's "Kiss From A Rose" which is a perfectly lovely song that was so overplayed that it's now a punchline.  And Smashing Pumpkins "The End is the Beginning is the End" was a great song, but it was the only thing even mildly palatable about the entire shitshow that was "Batman and Robin."  Well, that, and Alfred.  Alfred is always great.  You can listen to "Face to Face" and not immediately feel like you're listening to a soundtrack.  It stands up on it's own.  Of course, the fact that it brings to mind my favorite part of one of my favorite movies?  BONUS.

It's 1:30 in the morning, and I have to stop thinking about Batman Returns and Siouxsie.  I need to sleep, not watch endless clips while making happy noises.

A final thought...

Anyone else think it's strange that Siouxsie has looked 18 for the last 30 years?  How are you doing that, Siouxsie?  I didn't look 18 when I WAS 18.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Last day of 33

Today is the last day I get to be 33.
How do I celebrate?
By cutting my fringe too short.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Creative Frenzy

April has begun, and that means it's CREATIVE FRENZY MONTH.

At work, I am taking a crash course in Photoshop to learn how to take newspaper articles apart and rearrange the bits.  Makes them easier to display, dontchaknow.  So far, I'm very good at taking apart.  I have yet to put back together.  I am on a very tight schedule, because these things need to go out to the printers by the end of the month.  So far, I have 40 articles taken apart.  Tomorrow, I take apart the last 15, and then I get to spend the rest of the month putting them back together all perty-like.  The thing making this difficult?  13-inch MacBook.  That screen is SMALL, yo.  I hunched and peered all day.

At home, I have momentarily abandoned the Garage Project in favor of sewing myself some new RenFaire duds.  I've changed sizes, so none of my usual stuff is fitting properly.  In lieu of a proper corseted sort of outfit, I have decided to embrace my Goblin roots and make something a little more feral.  I'm currently working on a fairy-pocket-belt thing (with interchangeable tails, because some days you feel like a werewolf, and some days you feel like a plague rat).  Once that's bashed together, I'm going to make a sort of short Ghawazee vest thingy to squish my boobs together in a fetching sort of way, and then a stretchy fitted-torso dress with a flared skirt to go underneath it.  It'll all be in shades of black and charcoal and mouse-color.  That, plus bloomers, plus ears, plus a touch of crazy-eye... it should look interesting and be comfortable.  It's in no way historical, but I've been going to Faire for over 20 years.  I've earned a little fantasy.  This aint the SCA.

I have a bag of various mammal bones waiting on my beading workbench, to be fashioned into fetching jewelry for this little getup.  One of the hazards of being a naturalist is that you start to think dead things are decorative objects.  I also have various rusty old skeleton keys, some old clay beads, and some beetle elytra laying about.  Once I get back from walking my dog, it might be creative jewelry time.

I drafted the pocket pattern today.  Tomorrow, I might pop by the fabric store to see what sorts of grey and black remnants might be available for pockets.  I'm a big freak for tidy edges and sharp corners, so I'm going to challenge myself and have >gasp<  VISIBLE RAW EDGES and NO LINING.  I don't think Goblins line things, and they sure as hell don't hide stitching.  There will probably be a ton of handwork involved.

If I can swing it, I want to have all the sewing done by the 15th, so that I can take embroidery materials to the professional conference I'm attending and gussy it all up with stitchery while I'm listening to speakers.  I am pretty adept at tying various decorative knots (mostly Chinese, but Celtic's not too far off), so I might couch some of those on for a touch of dimensional awesomeness.  In my head, it's very elaborate.  In reality, it will probably look very austere.  When you're almost six feet tall, it takes an absurd amount of detailing to fill spaces.

When I am dressed like something out of the Dark Crystal, I just feel so much more.... myself.

Sunday, April 1, 2012


"Floral!" our Miss Kitty said.
While others groaned, I smiled instead.
For flowers are my favorite way
To add some happy to my day.

I like a flower on my hat.

I like it when they're near my cat.

I like the flowers at the zoo.

I like the ones found in Peru.

I like the ones out in my yard.

I put them on my dog (it's hard).

I like them on upholstery.

I like the kind that grow on trees.

I make them for the hair of brides.

I strapped some to my two-wheeled ride.

I see them when at work each day.

And when I'm dressed as Frieda K.

My workbench even has some flair.

I like flowers everywhere!