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2009 January | Tomita Designs

Megan Scheminske Chaboo

January 31st, 2009 by admin

I met up with Chaboo artist Megan Scheminske today at Pistils Nursery on Mississippi to work on her chaboo.  Many of you may recognize her from her participation in PULSE, a local charity art thingy.  Here she is with her painting.  Her hair is no longer blonde so you may no longer recognize her.

She was trained to paint with oils but is struggling with the idea of switching to a less toxic medium.  Curiously, she has no sense of smell and she is afraid that she cant truly sense the toxicity of what is around her.  Hmm… the struggles of eco vs performance.  For some reason the best stuff has to be bad for you- chocolate, rib eye steak, oil paints…. In my upside down universe ice cream, beer, and pork belly would all be good for you and cheap.

Her idea originally was to do something out of local materials.  I ran into her a few weeks ago and somehow our conversation then inspired her to steer towards live plants.

I am going to recess that glass mini-ecosystem thing into the chaboo body and attach those mushroom to the sides as shelves for airplants.  Airplants are these strange plants that dont require any soil-  you can just put em anywhere like stuffed animals.  Megan will then paint the chaboo to accompany the living elements.  Fun fun fun!

Final Photo Shoot Feb 15,16

January 29th, 2009 by admin

Reminder to all chaboo artists who havent been photographed yet:  The final photo shoot is Feb15,16 mid February, just as promised.

The show is first week of march at the Ford Building.

Details coming soon.

My Chaboo by Maren Jensen Part 2

January 27th, 2009 by admin

We’re all monsters, you know?……

Continued from part 1…

First I sketched out the images I wanted. Some were more thoroughly drawn
out, like the portrait, and the tentacles were often free-hand as where
they are placed doesn’t need to be as accurate.

Then I use the etching tool (normally used on metal for dry-point or
acid-etching) to follow the images I’d drawn using pencil. The tool can
create a very fine line, but the grain of the wood can pull and push it
around a bit making it a little tough on the hands. After a few hours the
tool began to dent my finger so band-aids and cotton balls were needed in
order to keep on!

The etching process takes a long time as sometimes deeper lines than the
tool can provide ensure that the ink will stay in the grooves.

Next I spread printing ink on the areas where I had etched. At first I
wanted to do a lighter color, to contrast with the wood and the purple
heart inlay, but the ink stained the wood in an unflattering way. Instead
I mixed a color pretty close to that of the purple heart.

After the ink has been spread I used a wet rag to wipe away the excess,
ideally leaving it only in the etched lines. Because the ink was water
soluble and many of the lines were very thin I needed to do a few rounds
of the inking process.

THE EEEEEEEEEND!!!!!!!!!!!

The Penny Jam presents Celilo Live at TomitaDesigns

January 26th, 2009 by admin

Exciting Sunday at the shop today.  My friends produce a video podcast called the Penny Jam of local bands in unconventional locations and they asked if they could film in the shop.  Several chaboos make a cameo appearance in the background (behind the drummer).  Here is Celilo live at TomitaDesigns~! (I will never say this again)

Penny Jam at the shop from Ken Tomita on Vimeo.

The Penny Jam is an almost-weekly video podcast filmed in Portland Oregon. In each episode we film a different band playing in an unconventional performance space, helping music escape from the often-drab environs of dark, neon, concert venues. We are interested in documenting as wide a variety of musical styles as possible, including indie rock, bluegrass, electronic, hip-hop, jazz etc, etc

Check out their website www.thepennyjam.com I will post again when the music video is edited and up on their site.

Penny Jam at the shop from Ken Tomita on Vimeo.
Pretty weird seeing a band play in my shop.  Context is everything… stretch the mind…

Project Chaboo Show at the Ford Building

January 25th, 2009 by admin

We have officially secured a venue!  Ive committed to doing the show at the Ford Building on SE Division between 10th and 11th.  They used to make model Ts there back in the day and now the space has been renovated for retail and studio space.  The central corridor is gallery space Gallery Homeland, run by curator Paul Middendorf.  The central space is about 2000sqft and we can use over 3000sqft of adjacent vacant rooms as well for the show.

Paul has been nice enough to work with us and let us do the show without paying commissions on the chaboos.  I had to give up free beer.  Sorry everyone- but itll be worth it!  Artists make more money and customers get lower prices - everyone wins!

The show will be sometime during the first week of March.  I will be posting as specifics become more clear.  Thank you everyone who helped me look for a space.