Thursday, March 12, 2015

Inspired by Reading February Blog Hop...

No, it wasn't a typo.  The title of the blog post is correct!  Even though it is mid-March, we are revealing the creations we made for the February selection of the Inspired by Reading Book Club, "Geek Love" by Katherine Dunn.  (It slowly got pushed back due to February being a short month and bad weather.)  I feel awful for postponing the in-person meet-up.  (We will be combining our February and March in-person meet-up.)  I usually look forward to it so much, but I've been working crazy hours and I just needed a night off to cuddle a cat and catch up on March's selection.  We'll be back on track in short order!

Our February book selection... was zany!  This book, written in 1989, follows the life of an albino hunchbacked dwarf named Olympia and her family, the Binewskis.  Like Oly, each family member is "different".  The book is one of those books where you're like, "How much weirder can it get?"  And then it gets weirder, and tops it with an extra helping of weird.  But the extreme weirdness is part of the charm of this book and I can't help but think that this was the inspiration for some of the current carnival-themed TV shows. Ahem. American Horror Story: Freak Show. Ahem.

And without further ado... here's the reveal:

Laurel Ross made this necklace.  Here's what she had to say about it:  "My inspiration is twofold this month.  I came up with this design from my feelings about the beginning of the book.  It was relatively weird, but I thought it was narrated with fond memories and never expected things to get as twisted as they did.  The blown glass beads featured in this design are from the Design Challenge called Festival Lights.  When they came up in a destash event, I knew that I had to have them!  And I'm so glad I have the perfect story to create with them.  The focal is a ceramic piece by Andrew.  It doesn't quite match the mostly primary colors of the beads, but I like the contrast and I wanted it to represent the happy feelings a person gets when they go to a carnival – the lights and sounds and intrigue."

Laurel also made this necklace.  Here's what she had to say about it:  "With this piece, I'm showing how the book turned from happy and heartfelt, to black and deranged and how it went "up in flames".  Spoiler alert:  When Chick reduced the circus to rubble with his fireball, I was so saddened and also very disturbed!  I got the focal from a destash a few years ago.  It was the perfect way to show the carnage from the fire.  I used part of a triangle toggle as a closure and funny enough, a piece of it broke apart while I was attaching it to my necklace – broken apart like that crazy family!  And so, it became a component to represent the love triangle which can be made between many of he characters."

"Lastly, there is a small black heart.  It's wire-wrapped on a green enameled headpin.  This represents Aqua Boy and his black heart and green, worm body.  I'm utterly disgusted by him.  All in all, this book was certainly crazy!  I really can't wait to see what images everyone else is putting into their pieces."

I made this piece.  I took a more literal approach.  The piece I made is crafted out of polymer clay and depicts the Siamese twins, Iphy and Elly.  I had the idea to sculpt all of the Binewski clan and turn them into pins to be attached to a sash.  But time has been short and I only got The Twins done.  I will say that this book was very visual and there were plenty of things to find inspiration in.

But that's not all!  Check out what these participants made for the blog hop:


Up next is "Home" by Toni Morrison.  CLICK HERE for the full list of this year's books.  There's only four more books in this cycle and then we'll begin the next series of selections.  CLICK HERE to see the next assortment of books.  The in-person meet-up for Home (and Geek Love) is scheduled for Wednesday, April 1st.  The blog hop is scheduled for Thursday, April 2nd.  If you're interested in keeping up with us and what we're doing, CLICK HERE to visit our Facebook page.  CLICK HERE to check out our supplemental inspiration on Pinterest.

7 comments:

Alison Herrington said...

Andrew- thank you for such an inspirational book club and hop! Your polymer is perfection and just how I im the twins to look!
Laurel - your fire ball is spot on! Great wire work! I love how you two went so literal with your peices and I went on a HUGE tangent for mine. I can't wait to see you wearing your necklace!

Mary K. McGraw said...

I like how Laurel's necklace represents how the story went up in flames.

And your representation of the twins is amazing.

Both pieces tell a great story.

I enjoyed the book and lull its craziness.

Bluefinch said...

Love these pieces. The symbolism is perfect! That pendant looks like a glowing fireball! And that is a great representation of the twins too! Awesome!!
Rachel

Bluefinch said...

Love these pieces. The symbolism is perfect! That pendant looks like a glowing fireball! And that is a great representation of the twins too! Awesome!!
Rachel

Andrew Thornton said...

Laurel: Good job! Both pieces are a lot of fun! I like the fun, carnival flare of the first piece. And I get what you mean about heartfelt. It's so weird to think of this book as being heartfelt, but even though they are a freak show, they are a family and there is definitely affection there. The second piece is wonderfully warm. I like how you were able to capture the fire from the book and translate it into a piece! Nicely done! Thank you for participating!

Sarajo Wentling said...

Laurel, I love how you made pieces based on two very different parts of the book. The first is so bright and happy... it feels like going to the circus! And I love the fiery one too. What a perfect pendant!

Andrew, you never cease to amaze me with the pieces you sculpt. The twins are so cool! And thanks again for hosting this great group... I'm so happy to be a part of it all!

Jeanne @ Gems By Jeanne Marie said...

Laurel, I love both of your pieces and your inspiration.
Andrew, The Siamese twins are amazing!