Sunday, January 31, 2016

Book Signing And Cake

I love book signings. First you get to talk and see the author. Then you can talk with others who like said author. And you can't forget about getting a signed and personalized copy. What's not to love?
At the bookstore today was Maria V. Snyder's release party for her newest book, Night Study. Last February was the launch for the previous book in the series. This year, I remembered to bring my camera.
Maria brought a delicious cake that featured the American, Australian, and Great Britain covers of the novel.
She set up and signed books.

Hey! Here's a rare picture of me. I got a picture with her and my newly signed book. Can't wait to read it.

Afterwards I finished reading a ton poems for the campus literary magazine, so no plastic pony stuff for today. So here's one of the nameplate halters I made being modeled on the owner's model. It looks really nice. :)
Photo credit Tiffany Magnett

Friday, January 29, 2016

Snow Fun!

It's Friday!Yay weekend and sort of brain break. 
No one in my family has gone into the backyard since the snow. So I decided to take a couple of models outside and photograph them.
First was Pretty In Pink the pony.

Next was need-a-name Valegro.


Love his eyes in this picture.

Weather girl (I can never remember the name I gave her!).

Monday, January 25, 2016

Dressage Pony

First off, I love Valegro. He's a dynamic sculpture and has a pretty face and neck. While I was snowed in, this has made progress. 
Bridle was first.  Ear Bonnet was made by Crystal Creek Farm.

Then I tweaked/made a dressage saddle pattern. I have the KeriOkie dressage book, and started off with the flap and tree pattern. I tweaked it to be what I wanted and then made the underlaps and panels. 
I'm very happy with the saddle. The part I'm happy about the most is the section where the back of the tree, panels, and skirt meet. I tried something different and got it to wrap around/angle more like a real saddle! Will be using the new technique for later saddles. The saddle pad is a Breyer one that I've had for years. Last part that needs done is the girth, but my sister seems to have shared whatever she was sick with so, yup. Itchy throat and constant cold fun. 

Also, this blog is almost at 100,000 page views! I can't say thank you enough to everyone who reads and comments here. Thank you so much for reading this blog! 

Blizzard Jonas

The blizzard hit, and it hit hard.

My area got 30+ inches of snow. During the blizzard my sister, Kendall, decided to be social and go find humans.

Since it was white out conditions we went outside to attempt to sled in the street. Didn't work, but it was a good effort.

Yesterday my mom, Kendall, and I went out to dig ourselves out. There was much to do.
We have a snow blower but the snow was too high for it so Kendall and me kicked it around to manageable levels.

While shoveling Penn State sent a message that campus would be closed today, so the mission to clean off my car was aborted.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Winter Is Coming

Winter is coming. Really, it is. The roads are covered and apparently the worst hasn't even hit yet. This is the first sign of winter for the year.
Before a storm people freak out and buy perishable items *coughmilkeggscough*. I went the other direction after class and made a Tandy Leather stop.
And this guy was waiting for me when I got home.
He's the 2016 Breyer Traditional Valegro. 
He's pretty. 
And so needs a new bridle. I don't have any upper level dressage sets---so he is getting one. 
If you have some of the other breyer upper dressage horses, he's similar in size to Salinero in face
 and in girth.
I'm hoping to get better pictures of him in the am since it's dark.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Done! Well Almost.

The western saddle is 99% done. I need to do some things to the stirrups but the saddle-saddle is done. A girth and a bridle needs made but first I need to figure out who will wear it.
I'm *very* happy with how this came out. I feel like my tooling has come a long way since last year's Harry Potter saddle!  
It snowed last week. It lasted overnight before melting away. But there was enough for me to have it in a picture. This is what I've been reading. The 5th Wave. Well, other than textbooks. I've started it off and on since high school (I found a valentine's day chocolate and flower buying form inside it!). Since the movie is coming out I have a deadline to meet and maybe it will be the final push for me to finish it. The movie looks like it will be good and interesting. Plus I like the people in it, which is a plus.
It's told in 1st and 3rd person from different characters. If the whole thing was written in 3rd person......I think I would have finished it by now. But I'm curious about how it will end so I think it will be finally completed.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Western Tooling

While watching movies with my family, I've been tooling this. The pieces are finally done being tooled and my brain is fried! Can't wait to put it together.
(The leather is the same color, even if the picture looks otherwise!)

Monday, January 11, 2016

Shipping Tiny Things

Started my spring semester today! Which means not as much studio time.
But I did ship some halters so, here's a short how-to/tip for shipping small tack things.
For halters, I use jewelry shipping boxes. If it's been used for jewelry for so long, it's safe for plastic pony items. The inside has stuffing inside too. More protection.

Then I put it inside of an envelope. Not any envelope. Padded envelopes. They're lined with bubble wrap which adds to the protection. Shipping is a game where you want everything to end up in great condition in the most efficient way. If the halter fits and the box fits in the envelope, then it's off to its new owner! These boxes come in different sizes, so you could go smaller for boots and miniature props. Longer boxes would work for bridles and girths. I wouldn't send a saddle this way, so that's a post for another day.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Books + Halters

Tomorrow is the first day of my spring semester! I'm excited about my classes because A) I don't have a mathy math class. Which is always wonderful. The only thing I'm not looking forward to is waking up way earlier than what I'm used to. :)
I came home to a package, which included books. I read Elizabeth Wein's Rose Under Fire which is the second book after Code Name Verity, but they're connected standalones so the order isn't nearly as important. Blue Lily, Lily Blue is the third book in a quartet (fourth book is coming out in the next couple of months).  I need to finish the second one. So two completely different genres with the connection being awesome authors. 
I also finished some more halters. A couple of people asked about more American Pharoah, so these have been claimed.
The odd ball is for Weather Girl. I *still* haven't unpacked from my last show so this was the first Weather Girl I found. I think the halter looks nice on a decorator model!

Zombies From The Other Side

I ordered some more leather lace and that arrived today, which is always a welcome sight. But that isn't nearly as exciting as zombies.

The boxes I sent out arrived safely and I enjoyed reading Jennifer Buxton's blog post about her zombie and zombie related things. Emma also won a zombie and sent me some pictures of her  zombie and zombie halter. She also wrote a longer post here. I enjoyed reading both of your posts!

Zombie halters are always great

Carrick is tolerating being ridden very well.

Time to chase

Even if you're a zombie, riding helmets are always important. 

Saturday, January 9, 2016


I ordered some leather lace, so it's in the hands of the US postal service. So no more halters until then.
I directed my attention elsewhere. I've been having good luck with model horse tack making so I decided to play with my english saddle pattern.  The flaps are always my biggest problem area. I see what the real saddle looks like, but having my hands and eyes coordinate enough to where it transfers well into paper can be the biggest struggle.
So I found my reference and drew it out before going through multiple paper prototypes.

Then I did a dummy leather attempt. It's a saddle of many colors and leather type!
I did some more fixing after that point.

Today I decided to put a sorta fake but a fake with nicer leather saddle together. I left off stirrup leathers and dee rings, but I do like the flaps. SO MUCH.   I plan on switching my skirt pattern with another I already made. Instead of using thin metal for the tree I used a thicker sheet metal. I have to remember that the metal is thicker and it doesn't need as much bulk added. The panels, well, I didn't really wait long enough to glue them, haha.
But yes, here it is!

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Water Horses In A Signed Book

These two books look the same, but they aren't.
Back in December, before Christmas, Maggie Stiefvater made an offer on her Facebook page that I couldn't refuse.
A signed book with a doodle in it? YES PLEASE. The first thing that crossed my mind was "Nice gift--for myself." I am a semi-selective book hoarder, so having multiple copies of my most favorite books is not unusual for me. And The Scorpio Races is one of them. I bought the first hardback last year after having an ebook copy for a couple of years.
Maggie Stiefvater is an artist and was one before becoming a full time author so I knew the doodles would be nice. A week or so after ordering, she posted a video of her drawing and signing at Fountain Bookstore.
And what's the book about? The Scorpio Races takes place on the island of Thisby from the the dual perspectives of Puck and Sean. Every November there's a special race where riders try to control their horses long enough to survive past the finish line.It's called The Scorpio Races. The story surrounds the events working up to the race. These aren't regular horses either--they're called the Capaill Uisce and the sea calls to them. And sometimes your blood. 
In other words, it's pretty awesome and I love the characters, plot, and writing style. Hence why I now own three copies. My doodled copy came a couple of weeks ago, but I thought it was about time to share it.
I am quite pleased with my copy.  And I love the horse!

And in tiny model horse news, I finished another American Pharoah halter today. I liked how it came out, so here's a random tack photo!

Monday, January 4, 2016

Halters for Sale

I have 3 halters for sale!
*Update* All have been spoken for, thanks!*
They're all made to look like the one that the real American Pharaoh wears. The leather is dark brown/brandy with gold hardware. Each halter has a nameplate with American Pharoah's name along with a working buckle.  They're made to fit Breyer's Ruffian mold/American Pharaoh but should fit similarly sized models.

These are first come, first served. They are priced at $35 ppd to the continental USA. International is extra. If interested, you can use the contact form to the right or use the messenger on the studio's Facebook Page. If you have any questions, feel free to ask. Thanks!
(If you would like the halter to be cut so that it can fit around the mane, include it in the message!)

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Guest Post| A Year of Art

Madison of Gyrfalcon Studios, who has been on this blog numerous times challenged me to a cool 2016 resolution and asked if I was interested in sharing it (which was an absolute yes!). Thanks again Madison!

A Year Of Art

Hi and happy New Year from Gyrfalcon Studios!

I have made several resolutions this year but the one I want to share with is art related. Sometimes when I'm at college, it is hard to make my own art. I just do the projects assigned to me and that causes a minor burnout. So this year I'm challenging myself to create at least one piece of art for myself each month. And I'm inviting you to join me!

Each month has a theme. Where you take the theme is up to you:

January - The Ancient World
February - Dreamlike
March - New Life
April - Growth
May - Animals
June - Mythology
July - Feathers
August - The Future
September - Knowledge
October - Remembrance
November - The Modern World
December - Winter

Every month I will post a brief introduction to the theme and some examples that I feel fit the theme (or in the case of January, some art from the cultures being explored). These pieces can be created in any medium, from colored pencil to text. I will be posting my in-progress and finished pieces on here and on instagram using the hashtag #GFSYearofArt. If you participate and post your piece on instagram tag me @gyrfalconstudios and/or use #GFSYearofArt so I can see what you've created! I may even repost my favorites.

Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greece, Rome...these the first few names that popped into my head when I think of the ancient world. These civilizations have a rich history and culture (I'm personally partial to the myths of these civilizations). Most have also produced a rich collection of art pieces that can be seen in museums around the world.

Some examples of art from these cultures -




Some ideas to inspire you:
  • Create a model/drawing of a building based on Greek and/or Roman architecture
  • Illustrate a myth
  • Create your own cuneiform seal
  • Create your own hieroglyphic tablet 
Read some myths, look at some art, learn some new historical facts and then create your piece! The sky is really the limit.

If you need some more inspiration check out my Pinterest board Art Inspiration