I spent this past Saturday in Chapel Hill at a gathering for Carolina model horse hobbyists. It was set up as an informal sales and swap meet, but I didn’t really have anything to sell or swap so I went primarily to socialize. (If only I had remembered that I have storage closets full of old “bodies” from my long ago remaking days!)
It was great fun and it turned out that I am not the only one who thinks the model horse community needs more non-showing events. I have long thought that we needed these to build healthy ties among hobbyists. One should get a sense of belonging when around people with shared interests, and the online nature of our activity isn’t always condusive to that.
I was also able to meet Maggie Bennett, who had recently moved to North Carolina from Maryland. Maggie is probably best known for sculpting micro minis like this little Arabian. She brought a bin full of these pewter castings, and they were a big hit with everyone who attended.
She also had a whole host of new micro sculptures with her. It was really interesting to see the originals, which had been done in a combination of Gapoxio and Green Stuff. (I think I have those brands correct!) The reddish brown coloring on some of them comes from the primer.
It was really interesting to hear how Maggie sculpts these guys, and very tempting to come home and give it a try! Certainly they are great as studies for larger works, which is often what Maggie uses them for (in addition to having them cast in pewter). It struck me that tiny horses like this might also be a good testing ground for working with putty again. I have in recent years sculpted almost exclusively in non-hardening clay, but I have often thought it would be wiser to switch to something that hardens because that makes the original easier to cast.
At the end of the gathering, we decided that we’d return in November for what we’re calling “Myopia Madness”. Attendees will pay a flat fee of $20, and will get their choice of pewter micro and access to all manner of tools and supplies for painting them. We’ll then spend the day painting together. I am really looking forward to it. I haven’t used “cold paints” (the term we ceramists use for anything that doesn’t fire in a kiln) in many years, so I am probably going to muddle it all up. But I am thinking that if I succeed in painting something that small, all these little bisque Imps are going to look much, much easier!