Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Folk Festival in Butte, MT

etozI was in Butte, MT this weekend as a vendor for the festival, and it was pretty interesting. There were about 60-70 thousand people that attended. I was there with my business, Salish Silver, selling silver handmade jewelry. Part of being a Renaissance Indian is keeping up with multiple arts and cultural events. I have several very good friends that are excellent artists, Valentina La Pier, a Blackfeet Indian from Browning (living in Arlee, MT) whose paintings are too great to ever pass up if you have the funds, and DG House, a Cherokee living in Bozeman, MT who has animal and native paintings and prints that are distinctly different from others. Both of these ladies I count among some of the best people I know. I also was able to talk to Leroy Whiteman, an antler carver who makes the best antler carvings I have ever seen. Merle and Nicole Big Bow from Ronan were there with their beadwork, paintings and crafts, all beautiful things. It was like old home week visiting with all of these talented artists. I'm glad that my son is able to meet and get to know these prople as well, because it shows him the value of making friends with good people. Of all the artists, DH is like a sister to me, we can see each other once a year or month or whatever, and we're always just glad to see each other. I call her about once a month to keep up with her, she travels to shows all over the western US and meets some pretty interesting people. I think we probably have 30 DG House prints at my home, and always looking for a place to cram another three or four in. It's the most awesome wallpaper you have ever seen anywhere. My artist friends always tell me to paint more, and I should, but I need to sleep sometime as well.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Weeks of travel

I have been a traveling man the past several weeks, I was in Challis, ID during the second week of June presenting and participating in a "Pathways to Mars" workshop. NASA and NSF provided funding for this, (I think) and there were a variety of activities. For my part I made an atlatl (AT latl) to show how it was used. People love to throw things, don't they? Projectiles are an important part of all cultures, whether or not you want to believe it or not. Hunting and protecting your family are pretty good reasons to have some sort of projectile around. The Maya used them to puncture the armor of invading Spaniards before disease weakened them to a point where it made no difference. Atlatls have been found on every continent except Antarctica.