today in the garden

 start of the 2021 season

hellebore, tulip, daffodils, lilac, and apple blossom


today in the garden

a state of the garden collage 


today in the garden

bluebells, scotch broom, tricolored willow, lilac, lily of the valley


today in the garden

forget me nots, snowdrops, lily of the valley, scotch broom, tri colored willow, dwarf oranges


today in the garden

forget me nots, snowdrops, lilacs and half frozen tree peonies, rescued before the return of winter in May. as if there wasn't enough else hell in the world.



today in the garden

daffodils, miniature orange, tulip


today in the garden

hydrangea and elderflower


today in the garden

70 yr. old roses, hydrangea, privet, elderflower 


today in the garden

roses from the 70 year old bush, rue and hydrangea


today in the garden

broom, buttercups and blue bells


today in the garden

Seems I fell off the posting wagon for almost a year. 
But I am back on it now so look for more posts soon.



today in the garden

peonies, peonies, peonies, broom and buttercups


Red as Blood and White as Bone

I've created this narrative book object for Theodora Goss (one of my current favorite writers) 
for her story - "Red as Blood and White as Bone" (click to read). I'll be presenting it to her hopefully at the Nebula Conference this weekend.

The box, measuring about 5.5" to a side, is constructed of pine and whitewashed. Within the box is a lining of faux black wolf fur and it contains an ikon made from brass, wolf teeth, bone and glass, a necklace of ruby colored glass and a small leather-bound book of the story with leather cord binding.

I hope she likes it. I tried to make it small enough for her to take home with her.


The Lady Astronaut of Mars

This is a new artist book based on the story 'The Lady Astronaut of Mars' by Mary Robinette Kowal (read it here - https://www.tor.com/2013/09/11/the-lady-astronaut-of-mars/).

I've done book versions of Mary's stories before. This one is a surprise for her and will be presented at the 2018 Nebula Awards.

The box is made of maple and cedar (I like how the cedar striping makes on think of the landscape of Mars). It measures 4" x 8.5" x 1.5". The NASA logo on top is metal (actually a lapel pin) as is the clasp and hinges. Inside are 27 antique IBM punchcards from the 1950s that had the text of the story printed on them. I used a 1950s period IBM font for the text and I like the ways the punchcard holes interact with it.

I hope Mary will be pleased with it. I do like her stories. They provide a vivid challenge to a handmade book artist.

click to embiggen


today in the garden

japanese tree peony, viburnum, lilac and bridal veil


Constellation Table 2

Second in my series of 'Constellation' tables - constructed of poplar, birch and cherry - 
and measures 11" x 20" x 30"h.

Grain patterns are very important in this piece. The position of the darker grain on the top is related to the knot in the birch on the apron. The cherry legs have a large tonal difference in their grain and I wanted the effect to be almost one of clouds of a lighter color. 

Grain pattern on the apron also wraps all 4 sides.

The darker pattern on the top and the eye remind me of nebulas and quasars and suit the name of the piece well.


today's bouquet

Rose of Sharon


The Romance of the Telescope

My latest narrative object piece takes its title from a song
by Orchestral Manoeuvers in the Dark. 

The main object is a silverleafed stone which sits
balanced on a cherry pedestal under a glass dome.

tRofT is about the romance and wonder of the celestial sphere
and of the objects endlessly orbiting within space.

The piece also has something tangental to do with the OMD song lyrics

See these arms that were broken, how they held you so.
Never once did they fail you, they won't let you go.

We're just waiting looking skyward as the days come down.
Someone promised there'd be answers, if we stayed around.

Over decades, now this romance has sustained us all.
Never questioned, only giving what it made us for.

Documentation of one of the studies for the piece can be found here.


today in the garden

within two years my elderberry bush has grown from about 4" high to over 7 feet. today was the first harvest of elderberries i have had. almost like clusters of tiny grapes, these two cups took about an hour to pluck off the branches. I have simmered them with sugar and decanted to bottles of brandy for elderberry cordial. they will now sit for a month in the cupboard to work their magic.

one more fruit to add to the list of all i grow here in the back yard.