Curmudge, Curmudge…

Where to start? Have you read this book?…

Well, I never read it. I’ve seen the movie about a jillion times and Sofia’s seen it too. Anyway, we read to Sofia before bed and she’s become more and more interested in longer books with less pictures and I think her grandmother gave her this one. Anyway, I realize that the movie was a musical and that there would be extra stuff in the book (it’s unabridged) but wow, there’s some extra stuff. So last night, I was reading a couple chapters to Sofia and I got to the part where they are on their way to the land of the wicked witch to kill her because that is the quid pro quo demanded by the wizard. The witch can see them coming and orders 40 wolves to tear them to shreds. As the wolves attack (one by one, like in a kung fu movie), the Tin Woodsman, as he’s called in the book takes his recently honed axe and decapitates the wolves one by one leaving them in a pile of bodies and heads. The witch sees this and sends crows next… the Scarecrow takes his turn at bat and one by one catches each crow and twists their necks off to kill them and makes a pile of dead crows. Then the witch sends bees and they all break their stingers on the Tin Woodsman’s body because it’s tin. I guess those are the bad animals. Crazy book, and the tin man is like one of those transformers… they come to a river they have to ford, no problem, the tin man chops down some trees and fashions a raft for all of them in no time… who needs a heart with those kind of woodworking skills? So after the wizard heads off in a balloon and Dot has to go find Glinda they come to a porcelain wall (no kidding, they refer to it as china not porcelain) and after they scale the wall, there is an entire community of porcelain figurines and streets and houses and animals except these living porcelain figures only come up to Dot’s knees and they can move and live their lives. Dots wants to take one home to Kansas but the beautiful figurine tells her that as soon as she left the area she would become rigid and not be able to move.
OK, my friend Ig was correct about the blue acrylic glazing liquid attempt, FAIL…

So, what to do? What’s the solution?

That’s right, there was a good reason I settled on shellac in the first place, it works a lot better than anything else. I guess now I’m gonna sit by my open window in the studio with a fan blowing out and do my shellacking until it gets cold outside and maybe then I will continue going down the endless paths of acrylic mediums and varnishes and different viscosities, etc. I may have salvaged this one although it’s not something I would duplicate because it’s insane to do all that detailed painting only to rub it off…

And here’s one that’s just the good ol’ shellac that works like a dream…

In other news, Sofia collected flowers while walking the demon dog today so she could press them between the pages of some books…

She’s very happy about the idea of pressed flowers but she wants to get them out every couple hours or so to examine them and see if they’re ready yet.

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15 Responses to “Curmudge, Curmudge…”

  1. ang Says:

    thats crazy carnage.. i def haven’t read the book nor seen the movie!! gorgeous blue theme today…cups, floors and book covers groovy man….glad you cam back to the beetle juice as toxic as it is….the perfect medium..

  2. Gordo Says:

    Authors didn’t spare kids from anything. Fairy tales were anything but nice and friendly, but they’ve all bee softened over the years. I’m still torn as to whether the old versions or new are better.

    I can’t get a sense of scale on those pieces .. Are they glasses or vases?

  3. Rob-Simple Circle Studios Says:

    The Wizard of Oz (the original) was an outstanding book. And it looks like the copy you have is a pretty old one. Not one of the original printings based on the cover illustrations, but still cool. In addition to all the stage and screen adaptations, Baum also wrote 12 other Oz books, and I think there are upwards of 30 “official” Oz stories. And personally I like the original versions of stories much better than the watered down versions of literature they give kids today. They might be a bit more graphic, but they are usually much better stories.

  4. Paul Barchilon Says:

    You guys are totally missing out on the Oz books! That is only the first of around 14 of them, each more wonderful and delightful than the last, with many young heroines and heros. The first book is the least interesting of them in many ways actually. L. Frank Baum is a great testament to what is possible if you believe in yourself. He had failed at a number of businesses, and was working as a traveling salesman. He decided to re-imagine himself as a children’s book author, and started writing the Oz books at the age of 40. The rest is history.

  5. Michael Giles Says:

    Jim, I’ve only read the first book to my son when he was young, and I loved it although I’m not sure how he felt about it. (I didn’t know there were 14 or so more Oz books.) I’ve seen the movie one and half times — the first time I thought it was lame, and the second time I thought it was so lame I went off and made some pots halfway through. There is a trilogy written just recently by Geoffry Maguire that is a retelling of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Very interesting, and intriguing, featuring many of the characters from the Oz book, but told in a completely different way. It’s more for adults, though. I don’t thing Sofia would like it…yet. Maybe in a few years. Beautiful pots, BTW. If the shellac works, that’s the thing to stick with, I guess…

  6. kyle Says:

    wow, thats more gore than a Quentin Tarantino movie…but right now I wish I was the Tin Woodsman.

  7. Patricia Griffin Says:

    Jeez, the original story was pretty wild, eh? Like the old Grimm’s Fairy Tales, enough to keep a kid awake half the night!… Speaking of nightmares, sorry you’ve had the go-round on finding a substitute for the shellac. Bummer.

  8. Tracey Says:

    The only time I have watched the Wizard all the way through is when Wesley discovered in THIRD grade that you could watch it to Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon and that was the only time I enjoyed it, with the whiney voice of Dorothy drowned out by Pink Floyd! Gerry’s dad is a Baptist minister, so like a good mom I thought I would read Bible stories to Wesley when she was young so she would understand the southern culture of church goers around her, but the stories were so violent I gave it up! Then she started reading Ray Bradbury and Cormac McCarthy and I gave up trying to figure her out!

  9. Eugene Hon Says:

    Apparently horror movies are back in demand. It is amazing how these stories, myths and legends are once again valued – they say it is in direct response to the recession. A form of escapism – I believe it due to a number of issues especially the development of R&D in motion graphics that makes it all possible. Break throughs in modern science has brought back a belief in the supernatural; be it powers to heal and to escape into a virtual reality. People live longer and have more faith in their own ability. The success of movies like The Twilight are all rooted in the notion that we can travel in body mind and soul, live our dreams and create our own world, if we only believe.

  10. artistatexit0 Says:

    Read the book after seeing the movie about a hundred times and for me, this is one of those instances where the movie is much better than the book. The two barely resemble each other.

  11. Peter Says:

    Hi Jim,
    The book cover brings back all sorts of good memories about chiildren’s books…. , but I have never read that one! The carnage in your description reminded me of Peter Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings” movie trilogy.
    The issue with the substitutes for shellac is interesting, it reminds me of “water soluble oils” that some people try as a “safe” alternative to oil paints. I have found the water soluble version almost unusable, and much prefer to inhale turps and linseed! At least shellac is nice and natural, and not some gunk brewed up in a lab!

  12. Mishmash Says:

    Thanks for the sweet and sour.

  13. Hannah Says:

    Some of these fairy stories are pretty scary really.

    I really like the Lille Street Gallery mail out that I got today with your bowl on the poster. Well done, looks great.

  14. Not Ozymandius, Oz-y-mania… « Sofia’s Dad’s Pots Says:

    […] Ozymandius, Oz-y-mania… By jim A while back I did a post about reading “The Wizard Of Oz” to Sofia and how much more to it there was than the movie. There were several comments from […]

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