Welcome to my blog. I am a young, self-taught artist from the Gulf Coast, who wants to provide pyrographic artwork that sends a clear strong message. Please take time to look through my pages and posts. I appreciate comments, love making new friends, and covet faithful followers. Shout hello if you know me, or are just passing through.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Cherry Wood

             Today I went shopping and I just love those discount stores because you never know what you can find.  Wherever I go I find myself subconsciously looking for suitable wood pieces, furniture, household decorations, or practical items.  How blessed I was to come across this unique wooden plate. 
            It was buried in a bunch of Malaysian native wood and bamboo cutting boards and all were pretty high priced for a discount store.  Nonetheless this was a great find and I can't wait for the inspiration to come. 

It would also make a beautiful custom piece for one lucky individual. 

I cannot tell exactly what wood it is but it is very hard, like oak.  It may even be a foreign wood. 
              Then I went down the road a ways and purchased two beautiful Cherry pieces.  I've always been attracted to Cherry.  Although it is not very visible in the picture, these two pieces posses a gorgeous red hue.  I cannot wait to see how well they burn. 
                Both pictures are horizontal. 
If I'm ever lucky I'll get my hands on some cedar!!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Real Ghost

          As Halloween approaches I am praying for the rain that has plagued trick-or-treaters in my hometown for the past two consecutive years.  Living near a dead end and being in a retreated neighborhood we don't get trick-or-treaters.  The only spooks I saw are the ones that show up downtown at the Saenger for the Halloween pops concert.  The ticket lady standing by the door is dressed in an adorable bumblebee consume, other attendants take on the forms of Star Wars characters or Grim Reapers. 
         The Mobile Symphony Youth Orchestra director, Dr. Seebacher, makes one good Grim Reaper.  I only knew it was him by his shoes poking out from the bottom of the long black garment.  (And I was only down there holding up appreciation signs for a loved Director of Education who was relieved of her position.) 

         But downtown cities and bars aren't the only places you're likely to find real spirits hanging out on any given day.  -Even Halloween.  Take a look at this one employee's run in with a tormenting spirit...in a Blockbuster video rental.

I guarantee you, he quickly found work elsewhere. 

Monday, October 25, 2010


              Just posting to let everyone know that I have another victory!  I pat myself on the back so because it is quite an accomplishment and I take pride in figuring things out on my own.  I applaud Mixpod for their navigable and user friendly website.  I will change my songs out here and there but for now I selected as many as I could think of off the top of my head. 

               I don't beleive that they'll play on pages so your song will cut off as you navigate, however, if you know you're going to be haunting for a few minutes try a little of the music and let me know if you have favorites and I'll be sure to keep them on there as I change out the selection. 

               Every hour of my life has to have a little music in it.  It's what my mood and attitude feeds on, so I thought I'd encourage yours with a few favorites- and the greater reason for my doing this is to introduce all of you friends and visitors to some great classical music I've been priveleged to play with the Youth Orchestra in town. 
               Just this past weekend we were handed the sheet music to Polar Express- Yay!  I'll be sure to make my music seasonal as much as possible. 

                In the pyro world I am busy hunting for more wood and currently working on turning out several more "Lord Bless This Home" signs for the Christmas season. 

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Artful Speaker

          This is supposed to be an art blog, no?  Well yes, actually, but I think my viewers wouldn't care to visit often if I only updated with progress on a boring old piece of art once a month.  So I got the idea to do a little blabbing and yakking.  Just whatever I'm up to or thinking about. 

          Right now life is on hold.  My life is on hold.  It's been on hold ever since I graduated from High School.  I always thought it was supossed to speed up and eventually spin out of control at this point.  I did get my driver's license but I still consider my life to be a standstill while my time whirls past me. 

         I called the Voice of God Recordings office twice now, only to find that I need to call earlier to catch the sister I need to contact.  I've done that and will be waiting to hear what I'll be able to do with my idea. 

         I'd hate to let the world in on my plans and then not be able to meet demands...or even turn out a decent work.  It isn't everyday I wring out a masterpiece.   I can say that if I go through with this... I can put scripture on the left hand side of the wood, and the scripture reference below the prophet. 

        I have about a dozen wonderful and perhaps, unthought of scriptures to fit the picture.  Most people would immediately think to put Malachai 4 or Revelations 10:7...but as I searched I came across other scriptures that speak wonderful messages.  I hope to give you all a vote on which ones to use, or even let you customize it.  

        Wish me luck as I find out what I can do with my plans.   

Monday, October 18, 2010

Up or Down?

                  The toilet seat issue has become a pet peeve of mine, especially since my little brother came into the family.  Now, being a woman doesn't make me partial, and I have done research on it before writing this article.  I'd like to know first of all, why men don't worry over bathroom hygiene like a lot of women do.  I've had many, many early mornings where I make one of those blind trips.  (Amazing how humans can walk to the bathroom and back with their eyes shut...some to the kitchen)  And the trip is always done in the dark with perhaps one little dim nightlight by the sink. 

                 But imagine, happily and sleepily chewing on that morning's plans (and it is currently anytime between 2:00 AM and 4:00 AM)  and you return to your bed...underclothes sticking to you...because you either sat in something very warm or very cold depending on how long ago that last made a night trip.  And you know it was your little brother's fault, but he's lucky enough to be sleeping right across the hall from mom and dad...so you decide to wait until later to kill him.  He's lucky...because by 7:00 AM you've dried off and sleep has eroded some of that murderous anger that one gets when one sits on such a thing. 

              That is why I sometimes think about waiting until after one of my sisters has made a blind trip down the hall.  (somewhat evil grin)  So I think to myself, this horrible, sticky-wet early morning could have been more restful if the lid had been raised... WRONG.  Because then it would have been left up...and I probably would have had a worse night.  This brings up the issue- should men leave the toilet seat up...or down?  Well, one of my research sources did a mathematical study on the wear and tear on the toilet seat if men had to raise and then lower it with every visit.  His study showed that it was only an act of kindness for the spouse and that women find it convenient because in the end, they neither have to raise or lower the seat except when cleaning.  Therefore, they do essentially no work, and the man ends up doing twice the work.  I partway agreed with his study but felt that the same amount of wear would be done on the toilet if a man left it up and the women had to put it down.  Like he said, it's an act of kindness for the women because it makes no difference who puts it down. The seat will eventually wear down. 

             I have one of those nifty little seats that lowers itself slowly and noiselessly.  When first introduced into our home, it caused a little problem when visiting homes deprived of such a nice little convenience.  Giving their toilet seat a tap to send it slowly lowering into place I found that it only smashed into the other porcelain lid with an embarrassingly loud BANG!  I quickly learned.  Now, don't ask me how, my cerebellum has taken over the task, and wherever I go, without a second though, I can lower a toilet seat down gently, and let mine fall on it's own. 

          So, this is my case.  There are three usable parts to the toilet's top.  The first lid, which is excellent as a seat (hospital station, foot prop for toenail cleaning, etc), the second lid (we all know what it's for), and the the third area (when the second lid is raised for cleaning).  I'm sure everyone knows that the sink and toothbrushes should be more than six feet from the toilet because studies have shown that vapors from a flushing toilet spread six feet in every direction.  It is also hygienic to leave the first lid down while flushing!  It is also hygienic and proper etiquette to leave the first lid down after usage.  This means that no matter what lid you raise, you must lower the first lid before exiting the bathroom!! 

       Now this doesn't make unfairness because men have to lower two seats before leaving a bathroom and women only have to lower one!  The outcome is simple.  If you are a proper and hygienic person, you automatically lower as many lids as you need to get the first lid (which probably has a pretty little rug covering on it) down before you flush.  This case is closed!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Animal Rights

             I just finished skinning my Uncle's bobcat.  What a gorgeous animal!  It took me 4 and 1/2 hours and my skinning around the face was flawless.  Couldn't have done better!  I didn't even pop a claw.  I should mention that I was fighting wasps and filth flies, mostly yellow jackets. 
            As soon as the cat began to thaw out the wasps began to arrive. I watched the first one with great amazement as it chewed out a chunk of flesh with it's jaws and then carried it off to it's nest.  I probably shouldn't have let it fly away because it brought the whole nest back with it half an hour later.  There were probably...oh, forty wasps attacking that cat by the time I was ready to bury the carcass.  Notice this post isn't illustrated.  I'd hate to be accused of disturbing images.  Yeah, it is gross.  I don't really want to post pictures of skinned animals anyway. 

          So before I could even salt the hide I had wasps landing on my shirt, my hair, one crawling on my arm, one crawling up my leg, and twenty others flying around and trying to get to the skin.  The one crawling up my leg was harmless because I had separated it from it's stinger with the skinning knife and dispatched twelve others who bit my latex glove whenever my hand got in their way.  "Hey, guys,- back off!"  I told them.  "It's my carcass. You can have it when I'm done."   Within those four hours they probably carried off about twelve ounces of flesh- not a bad amount for forty little wasps. 

          One term I run across every time I go surfing for taxidermy supplies and tips is this one:  Animal Rights.  "They have as much right to live and eat as we do.  After all, they were on planet earth for billions of years before we were!"  
         "If you say so."
       As far as Animal Rights go, Animals have all the same right we humans do and I can prove it.  They live in climate controlled houses, are fed three regular meals a day, and even have companionship.  They all receive paid medical care and they even have special little cemeteries just for their kind.  Alot of animals work for their keep, especially in other countries.  In America, alot of Animals are on welfare.  You probably own one or two.  I own a cockatiel who has been on welfare for 15 years of his happy little life.  He doesn't cost alot to upkeep though.  

       If Animal Rights extended so far that animals were eligible for some new-age Mammal social-security number and if one was murdered by a homo-sapien  the homo-sapien could face capital punishment we'd all be living on a diet of vegetables and our brain cells would be starving from lack of animal fat.  If this were life in the late 21st Century there would be daycares for the next generations of all those little critters who were destined for the slaughterhouse.  We, the humans, would be serving the animals. 

         And yes, slaughter yards can be inhumane and the animals can be unhealthy, but if Animals had equal rights with humans, we would be servant to them.  And you can't make their rights equal with wild animal rights.  After all, that butcher hog lived in a pen all his life.  Bambi got to roam a hundred acres for at least two years of his life  and eat whatever he wanted before he became a seasoned supper.   

       So- Animal Rights... what about insect rights?  Or...Rodent's Rights?  We termite treat out houses, and set up traps for rodents.  We exterminate all kinds of ...pests.  But rats show a great deal more intelligence than the neighbor's Maltese which runs into the street everytime a truck is coming.  Where would it stop? 

        I think those country rats and termites that consume pines in National parks have a far better life than any Animal Rights activist.  Maybe I should do a study of how smog on the brain can affect reasoning. 

Monday, October 11, 2010

Revelation 10:7

            My next project, I hope to be of God's prophet, Brother William Branham.  Today I have just begun to make plans for my newest piece of wood.  It's the perfect shape for a portrait and a scripture.  I don't know how well it will turn out, shading and people in general being much more difficult.  I have never attempted to burn portraits of people, and I highly doubt it will be exteremly successful with my $25 iron; but I shall give it a whirl and like alot of other projects, I may be surprised. 
           On the side of that, I'm very excited to announce that my Uncle Josh has shot a bobcat and I will get to skin and tan it for him.  I didn't feel confident enough to mount it for him, as I've only worked with one squirrel and such forms cost alot of money, but he should be pleased with an open mouth rug shell.  Bobcat pelts make pleasing trophies anyway you use them.  It would also make a nice wedding present.  Congragulations Josh and Hannah! 

"If You Only Appreciate The Live Animals, And Don't Appreciate The Dead Animals, Then You Are Missing Half Of The True Fundamentals And Nature Of Life" ~Takeshi Yamada - Rogue Taxidermist

Friday, October 8, 2010


I hope no one will take this as a death threat on the livelihood of their sweet little indoor animals.  Every time I go to flute lessons I like to sit in my teacher's living room and love on her dachshund and Persian cat.  In fact, she owns seven or eight cats.  She's a cat person.  Everywhere I go, the dogs come up and love on me.  As long as they don't stink to bad, I'll love on them.

Right now, my legs are quavering and shaking.  They've been quavering and shaking for about ten minutes now.  I just shot the stray cat, and buried my dead chicken.  I had been quietly coloring a pretty picture with my friend Sarah Rogers/Cottle and my sisters when we heard flapping and squawking in the front yard.  In about 1.8 seconds I had my gun in my hand and was tearing across the front yard, loading it and pumping it up to the eighth pump (it's not supposed to go over six- but just goes to show what adrenaline can do in this farm girl), ...tearing across the front yard like a wild banshee...or a US Marine and screaming "CAT!  MY CHICKEN OR YOUR LIFE!"  I leaped over the neighbor's fence in one swift leap, trailing the cat with my bird dangling from its mouth by ten or twenty feet only to come face to face with the neighbor man.  A really nice redneck man with a big heart who likes tinkering with his Chevy Camero.  I knew for sure he wouldn't think very well of a lady in a skirt plowing like an ex-Marine across his property with a BB Gun after a cat that might be his.  "Sir, was that your cat?  Did you see a gray and white cat c-c-come b-by here?!"  I was shaking with rage and looking around wildly...perhaps even psychopathically. 
"Yeah- he had a chicken in his mouth!  Go shoot it!"  That was all I needed!  I tore behind the trailer, my stomach churning so bad I wanted to stop and throw up.  I knew the cat wouldn't leap the wire fence with the bird, he's have to have gone through the one hole homeless people had cut to get to the trailer before it had been reoccupied and legally.  I went to the corner anyway and squatted.  I saw the cat half concealed by leaves with my bird in its mouth.  Bringing the gun up I took immediate aim for the guts and fired.  The cat leaped and disappeared.  I knew that if I'd missed, he'd have taken my bird.  If I'd hit him, the bird would be there.  I ran along the fence till I came to the opening and tore down the steep slopes to the creek, tripping and reeling along the way.  My vision blurred here and there as my heart screamed out for my little girl.  Thorny vines with spikes 1/2 and inch long tore at me and I broke branches with one arm and then my gun barrel.  I had to heave a thick bough of a fallen tree out of my way to get to the creek and then I nearly cried when I thought I'd lost the cat.  I didn't hear it running away...I hoped I'd killed it right where it stood.  Deciding to confirm this, I went West, back up the hill, through terrain I'd never dreamed of facing while exploring.  Right where I'd shot the cat...my bird lay.  Her neck was broken...she was bloody...lifeless...and it was the one with the hurt leg...who I'd babied for four days now.  Now I have only four chickens... 
           When I came back to the neighbor man, holding my lifeless baby in one hand and my weapon in the other, the neighbor man offered his kind hearted advice on the benefit of roosters in a flock and where to get some Jersey Giants if we ever wanted any.  I thanked him and asked him if he owned any cats.  He said that they were all strays that got into the garbage.  No body owned him.  "Thank you, sir.  I said.  Thank you very much."  And I hopped back over the fence and attempted to feel if my baby had any heart beat...even breath.  After several minutes I felt her feet and eyelids grow cold.  I took a shovel...and I buried her...alongside the ten other chickens I've lost within two years. 
          This autobiographical story is one every livestock owner has lived.  Next Monday I will go to my music lesson, and love on Smoky, the Persian...I might even pet the little kitty that strolls up to me out in public.  The neighborhood garbage cats...

Roaming Predators

        A couple weeks ago I purchased five little pullets from a neighbor lady who allows her thirty-something chickens to free range over her six acres.  So far, I've lost two, one to my own error...the other to a mysterious predator.  The first one, was lost during a heavy rain when I received faulty information down the line that the run gate was shut but the coop door was open.  "Well, it's raining hard, they'll be alright.  We've left the door open a dozen times before and nothing's happened."  The next morning I leap out of bed as my little eight year old brother nudges me and says, "Laurisa, something got the chicken, it took it, one is missing!"  Keeping a cool head, as previous months I might have grabbed a K-bar knife, a loaded gun and taken off to the woods in search of my little lost lamb, I went out to investigate.  My sisters whispered in their beds, "See, didn't we tell her something would happen!"  When I went out I determined that the prints in the sand were either skunk, armadillo, or fox...or...something...they were small, only three visible pads pressed into the grains of sand.  After more searching I found some prints that were clearly cat-like!"  The only consolation I got out of the event was that only one had been slaughtered apart from 2009's slaughtering of all 7 of my 10 birds by a dog. 
             Apologizing to my terrified birds for my carelessness, I bought two more of similar age which did okay fitting in with the others.  Okay...they still peck each other but when free-ranging the bullying isn't so bad.  That weekend, after coming back after Orchestra rehearsal I found that my family had let them out to free-range again, and the kids had played around them...and one was mysteriously missing.  For the following three days I looked for feathers...any sign of a feather, and found none.  It was most puzzling and saddening.  Although I cannot prove that the neighbors' cats or dogs had anything to do with the last incident, I can prove that they've played a big part in the previous murder of 8 of my chickens.  It happened over Thanksgiving...I was spending a wonderful time with my cousins and aunts and uncles...my 10 gorgieous babbies were locked away in their  run.  Their coop is a fortress by the way.  When we returned home from church and eating a wonderful meal at Golden Corral, we returned to find this murdering dog laying happily amognst the mutilated bodies of our three roosters and seven hens.  The chickens were all still alive, but so wounded they couldn't move.  The dog had litereally pulled the chicken wire loose of it's staples with his teeth, dug pits all around the coop (we had metal sheeting deep in the ground to prevent his getting father) and then, sliding under the pulled chicken wire, had thouroughly enjoyed himself.  Dad had to end the lives of Ferrgie and Popcorn and the other hens.  In all, three hens made it through the entire ordeal. We lost one rooster to blood poisoning a day later.  The hens had bruised backs, hurt legs, and were traumatized for weeks.  We kept them in the house because the dogs returned to the coop and began digging all around it.  I dealt with cleaning matted poop off their bum feathers and collecting soft shell-less eggs off the newspapers, and swore up and down I'd have the hides of the dog who brought a few friends back to the crime scene with him.  I delivered them all to the pound several weeks later.
      People know to love their cats and their dogs- but to love a chicken?!  Why that's absurd.  Loved or not, a chicken is valuable livestock, and I have a point to make here.  Cats and Dogs are predators by nature!  We take them from their hunting life and feed them Kibbles and Iams and all this mushy processed food that gives them cancer.  And then we let them out of the house to roam.  And you cannot keep them from leaving your 1/4 acre property unless you've fenced it to keep them home.  Your dog or cat is allowed to roam the greater part of the neighborhood and returns late at night or early in the morning without giving you account of all the yards he's turned into a latrine, or the superstitious peoples they've crossed paths with, or any other damaging crime they've committed.  While down the road, perhaps you are completely unaware that a livestock owner lives in the neighborhood, your animal has made an early breakfast of someones chicken.  No wonder they turn up their nose at their bowls and whine for the table food.  That animal, left your property, trespassed on someone else's property and committed murder or attempted murder on that neighbor's property.  That neighbor's animals never left their owner's property.  It's likely they were even in a pen of their own.  The law says that dogs must be kept on a leash!  I rest my case. 
        Dogs do not kill to eat.  The hawks, owls, raccoons, and other critters are wild and will fill their bellies.  They are not killers.  As much as I love well-bred  trained dogs, I must stay that they are domesticated killers.  I do what is necessary to protect my chickens.  But I have lost way too many chickens to neighborhood cats and dogs.  To the man with forty cats six houses down...please be responsible for your animals and fix them.  Not only that, but it's impossible to keep forty cats on 1/8 of an acre. 
      Responsibility for all your predator animals needs to be as high as the responsibility livestock owners have in fencing and protecting their animals.  Please, make an effort.

Monday, October 4, 2010

"Taking First"

          I've never been a big fan of Derbies or the horse racing business as they call it for the straight fact that young horses are raced too early all for the love of money and then retired or put down when their bones break from overstress.  I feel that Barbaro is a perfect example of this.  Most horse owners know that a horse's bones do not mature fully until 8 years of age...and most race horses are retired or put down before they reach that age because of injuries to their still maturing bodies.  Greed and Money is the root of the horse racing 'buisness' as men call it. 
           But...a running horse catches the attention of any human and after many laborious hours, I have created my latest masterpiece.  I call it "Taking First" simply because it is obvious that one of the horses is overtaking the others. He and the jockey have indeed taken first, perhaps, if you wish to interpret it this way, just strides before the finish line.  The piece is very dramatic to me and I have tried my best to capture this in the the muscles and shading of the horses, to the clothing and faces of the jockeys, and the very eyes of the horses as well. 

This is the first time EVER that I have drawn race horses, or even burned horses or people.  The art is One-of-A-Kind and is not currently for sale, although I may soon find a place other than this blog to advertise it. 

 For all of you lovely horse people out there who have been blessed with horses, I present to you my latest and finest.  Your interpretation of this piece is what matters.  Whether it appears to be Seabiscuit and War Admiral, or Barbaro, Smarty Jones, or Cigar, these horses will be your favorites.  With a little time I may present you with horses of all disciplines and backgrounds, or perhaps, some equine Mona Lisa that has a little mystery behind her inspiration.  Woodburning is such an awesome form of expression!

And here's one of my favorite horse racing videos: the World's funniest, stupidest, and yet the best, horse race announcer.  We're all getting there...getting there fast, and some of us, not getting there quite as fast.