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10 July 2014 @ 09:02 am
Fire pixie has 40 SHOWS this week.  This might be a record.  (I half remember a week where there was 41 but I'm not sure so I'm sticking with "record").
06 February 2014 @ 06:56 pm
At MerFest in January, I debuted my swimmable LED mermaid seashells.  Everyone loved them.  I loved them.  I talked a whole lot about creating an LED mermaid tail.. enough, in fact, that now I HAVE to make it, instead of just talking about it.

So, I've gone under.  If you haven't heard anything from me in a while, it's because I'm up to my gills in electronics and mermaid scales and waterproof boxes and soldering and SO MANY LIGHTS.

Today, after weeks of prep work, I'm starting to feel like this project is actually beginning to get somewhere.

The Universe keeps sending me help.  I have Phil, aka "Adafruit guy" - he works for the New York-based company where I'm buying most of my electronics, as a code guru and tech support and development guy, and he happens to live down the street from me.  He contacted me a few months back when he saw some forum posts and recognized my name from being a Fremont Community member.  He's solved a bunch of problems before I knew they existed, and has been a huge help in recommending batteries and such.  I have a feeling he'll be a huge help again soon when I get to the coding phase.

Then, the other night I met Justin, aka "Submarine guy".  The biggest challenge of this project is making the delicate electronics robust and submersible.  Justin used to build submarines and knows all about waterproofing electronics.  He also builds steampunk airships that fly.

I must say, this tail project is launching me into a pretty awesome social circle.

I'm resin casting individual LEDs and LED rings for the top part of the tail.  This takes a very long time, mostly waiting around for the resin to harden.  But today, after weeks of casting and waiting and cutting and painting and wiring and soldering, I was able to run current through the LEDs on the back half of the tail and watch it actually light up.  Granted, there's a whole lot more work to do (and bugs to work out, for sure) but .. it is shaped rather like a mermaid tail, it's got a little bit of color (the base coat is down for the paint job) and.  It.  Lights.  Up.

This is going to be so awesome.

I'm having a blast.  I absolutely LOVE having a project to do, and this is definitely one of the more challenging things i've ever taken on.  I'm learning a whole lot and making art all the time.  It's pretty rockin' great.

I need a light-up mermaid name.  Lumi?  Glow-mer?  Sparkle? Jewel of the Sea?  Everything I think of is awful. Any suggestions?
22 September 2013 @ 09:57 pm
So I clicked on my LiveJournal link and, like, EVERYONE on my friends list just made a post this week.

It's like old times.  Hi, everyone.  I don't have anything to say, I just want to join the party.
07 May 2013 @ 10:13 pm
Posting these everywhere cuz I loves them!!  I made some art today.  It's been a while since I made art just to make art.  Yes, I'll probably wear this to gigs.  Yes, costumes are work related.  But I don't have any specific plans for this one, so it counts as art, I think.

Peacock Fairy
27 February 2013 @ 12:30 pm
I wanted to write in my journal this morning but it appears I don't have a pen, not one, in the whole apartment.  (I think we only brought 2 to Japan, and so I'd say we're doing pretty good, having had at least one pen until early this week)

So I shall write here instead.  Beware of inconsequential rambling.

5 days left!  5 more days of fire shows at Huis ten Bosch and then we get to go travel with Nick & Bec all around Japan.  I'm so done, here.  I'm a little sad, at times, but mostly I just can't wait for a change of pace.

My creative soul is being fed through video editing.  Darrell and I are working on a hula hoop video which will be set to his newly finished song, "Give me Love" which (IMHO) is one of the best songs he's ever written.  It's catchy.  It won't leave my head.  :)  We've got a few more scenes to shoot and then I'll buckle down and start doing some serious editing on that.  For now, I'm making oodles of mini movies.

Movie 1:  Fireworks & Fire Show

Last Saturday night was the BEST experience of the entire trip.  We performed a 20 minute show accompanied by fireworks, laser lights, and fire cannons.  Can you say "Rockstar?"  It was amazing.. such a rush.  We were in the 3 opening pieces of music, then we sat a couple songs out and got a chance to watch the fireworks show, then we performed in the finale.  One of the songs was "Touch the Sky" from the Brave movie soundtrack, which I use all the time at kids' parties (I get to be Merida from Brave kind of a lot).  The song is a typical Disney heartstring-tugger, and is all about dreaming big and living your dream as best you can.  I had a moment where everything lined up.. as I sat there, resting between rockstar fire sets, watching the sky alive with color and the boom and pulse and flash and the music welling up... it was one of those rare moments where I felt like I was exactly, precisely where I was supposed to be, doing what I was put on earth to do.  Le Sigh.  So good.

Movie 2: Mini Show Montage

Every night we do 2 big shows (unless it's Saturday and then we do 3) plus one "mini-show" apiece.  The mini shows are really fun.. solo 10 minute shows with lots of improv and silliness.  Here's a little montage of all of us performing at the Masquerade stage.  The setting is just beautiful and the people are really fun.  I like mini shows.

Movie 3: Yanagawa Travelogue

Yesterday was my last day off and I went to Yanagawa.  Honestly I went just because I didn't want to sit around my little apartment any longer and I didn't have anywhere else I wanted to go.  The weather was shitty (It has rained on EVERY TUESDAY since we got here, I've never had a beautiful day off) and almost everything was closed.  I got lost. I ate some unagi, which is the local specialty.  It was a little depressing, but I tried to make the best of it and ate chocolate panda heads and made a video, which turned out to convey far less of a downer-day than I was having.  I needed to keep my mood up, and making this video helped.

Movie 4: Bio Park Video

We went to the zoo about a month ago and I finally got all the footage and the best few photos put together into a nice little 2 minute package.  I was REALLY bummed out at the time this video was made - in pain, exhausted, and just sort of depressed, and on loads of painkillers so I could at least move around.  The animals made me smile.  The whole bio-park is great.

Movie 5: Swimming Mermaid

I found time to go over the footage we shot in Hawaii in October.  We didn't get much in the way of video, and I'm a little bummed about that, but I made a cute half-video-half-slideshow movie from what we did get.

Movie 6: Aerial Tissu Slideshow

Again, not really a movie, but I redesigned the Fire Pixie web site and needed something for the Del Fuego page that conveys the mood of that piece, since I don't have a video of it.  I think it worked out OK, and I got a chance to do something with all those gold-suit photos, which are awesome.

So, that's been fun.  I'm learning a lot about using Premiere Pro and having a good time making art even though I don't have access to my sewing room stuff.  5 more days, and then VACATION.  So Yay.  :)
Current Location: Japan, Miyazaki
Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished
06 April 2012 @ 05:11 pm
Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, Universe, for today's incredible manifestation of abundance.   And for the reminder that I am being taken care of.
13 March 2012 @ 08:47 am
Hey! I want to instigate some Dinner and Drinks parties at Fire Pixie HQ. I feel like entertaining. (for once)

I am visualizing fun little dinner parties of about 6 people.. I see you people far too rarely, and I haven't met enough of your friends. I want you to bring me someone new and interesting. I want to cook you something delicious and possibly have a featured performer to come and delight your senses, or the like.

Which of you lovely people would be interested in coming to Fremont and letting me wine and dine you, on a weeknight not to far hence?
31 December 2011 @ 05:18 pm
New Year's Eve!  Yayyyy! 

Tonight I get to go do a quicky body painting gig (they found someone else to be the Statue of Liberty, but I guess she's makeup-impaired so they're gonna pay me to go paint her up) and then head off to our gig at the India Community Center in Milpitas.  We went down there to rig the tissu today and got a chance to run through our piece in the space.  I think the ceiling is only like 1-2 feet higher than my ceiling at home, which works GREAT because a big difference in height would confuse us, and any less height would have made some of our tricks really difficult if not impossible.

The rigging went so smoothly!  I have lots of fear issues around rigging.  It seems so complicated and scary and, well, my life and Miriam's will soon depend on whether or not we did it right.  But they had a good ladder, and we had the right supplies, and it was all way simpler than I had secretly feared.  Maybe this experience will help me book more aerial shows in the future.. I don't really "push" aerial because I always assume that rigging will be impossibly hard.

It's a belly dance show then an aerial show then a fire show.  YAY for venues that let us do both aerial and fire!  I heart the ICC.

We finish up around 11:30 and then, I guess, get in our cars and drive home and ring in the new year as we pull into the driveway or something.  Gonna be anticlimactic.  But I guess I don't mind too much.

Time to pack up the car!  YAY!  New Year's!!
30 August 2011 @ 12:39 pm
I am considering adding chicken and turkey to my diet. This is terrifying.

I gave up eating meat at age 17, when I was dating a Hare Krishna guy who had been raised vegetarian. He would get rather offended when I'd eat meat in front of him, so I quit doing it and in the process lost about 15 lbs (which really needed to happen, I was quite the chubby teenager).

Looking back, I realize it wasn't because I was suddenly eating healthier stuff - it was because I had no idea how to eat vegetarian and so wasn't really eating much of anything. I would look in the cupboards at my mom's house and not find any good veggie snacks so I would just give up and have some water.

I also kept it a secret for the first 6 months.. I didn't tell my mom or my friends or anyone at all. That means that family dinners were smaller too - I would just not take any of the "main course" each night, relying on salad for the most part.

I was 100% vegetarian (ovo-lacto) for about 12 years. During that time I ran marathons, climbed
mountains, and generally became the overly active exercise nut that I am now, on very little protein.

As I got into weight lifting, I started craving more protein. I added fish to my diet in 2006, just before my 2+ month trip to Japan. Now I eat fish maybe 2-3x/week and I eat a LOT of protein powder.

Darrell was vegetarian for years and years too, and started eating fish along with me in 2006. He just added chicken and turkey back about 8 months ago and it's making him really really happy. He regularly cooks chicken just for our cat Biskit, who also appears to be incredibly happy with chicken. :)

So. Do I jump on this bandwagon?

Pros: Chicken breast is super healthy. Poultry in general is really good for humans. There are a million restaurants I don't visit because I don't eat anything on their menu, and those restaurants would suddenly become open to me. Also, many of the restaurants I do visit have healthy chicken entrees, and right now I have to order the cheesy tuna melt or the eggplant parmesan.. meaning I can't order the healthiest thing on the menu. This goes against the grain for me. Also, right now Darrell and I never cook for one another, ever, since we really don't ever eat the same thing. Could save on a lot of work..

Cons: Well.. it's .. chicken. It's meat. I could no longer label myself "vegetarian". I would feel like I spent the last 20 years of my life striving for an ideal, and it would feel like giving up. Factory farms blah blah blah. (I eat eggs all the time, am I just in denial?) Would my family make fun of me? Would my friends make fun of me? Could I chop the head off a chicken and gut it and pluck its feathers and am I OK with the truth of this bird, dying so I can eat dinner? I have no idea.

I was at whole foods, making a salad at the salad bar yesterday, and I stood there for probably 10 minutes, staring at the shredded tuna and the shredded chicken breast. I stared and stared.. and then went for the tuna. I couldn't do it yesterday.. but it's starting to feel a bit inevitable.

Any recovered vegetarians out there who have some advice for me?
04 August 2011 @ 01:28 pm
 I am in kitty heaven.

In other news.. well, there is no other news.  All I have been doing the last 3 days is playing with my kitten.