They say he made you perfect….

When I was a kid (and even still actually) I’ve been told to love my body. I grew up in a somewhat religious house and constantly heard the phrase “god made you perfect.” I never thought much of it….until I got to middle school. Middle school was the time of finding yourself and your own style. It’s when we were big enough to pick our own clothing and style….and my style was definitely changing. I had always been a bit of a tomboy but in between seventh and eighth grade I went all out. I took a pair of scizzors to my hair and started dressing in my dads old T-shirts. My mother hated it but me? I loved it. I looked boyish and a bit dorky but cool. I strutted into school feeling like a new person….little did I know not everyone is so friendly about sudden changes in personal expession, especially in middle school. I was imidiatly nick-named ‘gender-not-specified.’ It bothered me a bit. I knew I was a girl. My mother called me her daughter, my family called me she….why would I ever question it? My strut quickly turned into a nervous slouch as people teased and laughed. I became outcasted and ended up a forgotten joke. After a summer of severe depression and an awkward freshman year I was more stable. In order to keep myself on the right path I dressed femaninly. I wore makeup and was very shy which mad everyone me an easy target for manipulative guys. Luckily I only had one bad relationship before learning my lesson. I had to learn to stand up for myself. Sophomore year I started finding myself. I began to dress more masculine again and nervously started voicing my own opinions. It was a great year and I felt that life was finally starting to calm down and run smoothly…..until the end of that summer. Less than a month before school began we took a family trip to England. Unfortunately the combination of jet lag and cigarette smoke made me sick the whole time but it was still an incredible experience with new adventures almost every day. It was the second to last day in England that I took my first shot with my sister (don’t worry it’s legal there) and I was pretty trashed. We went outside and she started talking about her confusing relationship with her boyfriend. I ended up drunkenly admitting I was in love with my best friend…who was a girl, and also that for some reason I wanted to have my breasts surgically removed. Surprisingly my sister wasn’t in he least disgusted by this confession and it gave me the courage to tell my mother about it. (after I sent my best friend a sloppy text asking her to go out with me. She said yes.) My mother was concerned about my strange desire to have a flat chest and sent me to a gender therapist and that’s when I discovered I was transgender. Slowly I realized I didn’t just want a flat chest and a boyish style, I actually wanted to be a man. The puzzle pieces all began to fit together. The more I dressed and acted like a man, the more comfortable and happy I felt with myself. I’m still transitioning, still building my body to be the way I want and it’s paying off. To anyone reading this, don’t take other people’s word for things. They told me I shouldn’t change my body, they told me I’m a girl and that I can’t change that, they told me that I’d regret transitioning into a boy, but don’t take their word for it because they were wrong. God did make me perfect. He put me in a challenging situation to see if I could find the courage to change it, even when others tried to bring me down. Your body is a sculpture, don’t let them sculpt you, you are your own artist, you choose the way you want to be shaped.

-Kabuki

Change your mind

Bring human is stressful, being a successful human is even more so. Artists or not we all strive to do something great whether it be creating great masterpieces, owning your own business, or just simple things like getting through the day. Recently getting through the day has been hard. Anxiety and panic can be crippling. I always believed that anxiety was an uncontrollable force that couldn’t be stoped. When it came it would conquer you, swallow you whole, and spit you out with only fear left inside you. I was proved wrong though. It’s all a mind game. Your mind is a horribly complex thing that is hardly understood. Trying to understand it and control it isn’t easy but sometimes you have to find a way. I found that way. I realized that it was me hurting myself, my mind swallowing my thoughts whole, and that I had power to stop it. I believed that the anxiety had been slain then, that I was free from its crushing grip…but I was wrong. It’s one thing to feel anxious, to know the symptoms of panic and stop it then and there but when there’s no warning, when there’s only that split second, that moment of being conscious and aware before the lights go out and you’re out of your own control; that is when you realize that your mind won’t always let you free.

Im sure everyone has experienced anxiety but I’m not sure if this is just that anymore. I’ve come to believe that it’s something more. I think it’s panic disorder but at this point who knows and who cares? I just want it to stop. I want to have that control back. I’m still fighting this fear, fighting the panic that devours my mind and sends my heart racing. My mother says I’m a hypochondriac. Maybe I am. It would make sense. I’m seventeen but have joint pains and all this panic. Maybe I’m a liar. Can you lie to yourself so much that you cause yourself physical pain? That’s what she thinks I do. I don’t know and frankly I don’t care. I just want a damn answer. I don’t want this pain, I never did. I don’t want to be weak, I don’t want pity, I don’t want to be looked down on, I am sick and tiered of people asking me if I’m ok because I breath a little heavier than everyone else, I am tiered of people treating me like I’m glass and like I’m about to break. I don’t want to be broken, I want to function like a normal human being. I am so complete over being the poor broken soul of the group, I am stronger than anyone I know, I push harder than the rest but all they see are the broken pieces of me and I am ready for that to end. Don’t ask me if I’m ok, don’t ask me if im in pain because whether I am or not I will tell you I’m ok because I don’t need you looking down on me. I am not weak, I don’t want to be the liar my mother thinks I am. I will show you all what strength is and I don’t want to hear you ask; “are you ok?” Anymore because no I am not ok but I won’t let you know that. I don’t know why I’m in pain. Maybe it’s panic disorder, maybe I’m a hypochondriac, but either way I won’t let you know. It’s time to show what power is.

To The Person Who Taught Me Love

I know it hardly has to do with art but today’s post is a dedication to my girlfriend.

 

I’ve had a best friend my whole life that I could always count on. Someone I could always trust. What I didn’t expect is that she’d teach me a lesson as important as learning to trust. She taught me how to fall in love.

I had always wondered if we could be more than just friends but I didn’t think I was her type. Surprisingly though when I asked her out she said yes. It was a bit awkward at first but after a while I realized I couldn’t stop thing about  her. I’ve dated people in the past but whenever I did I’d have panic attacks. I really never did like dating, it was always frightening and more of a chore than something to enjoy but then there was her. I always wanted to be around her, always wanted to talk to her, always wanted to hear her voice. Being with her was comfortable and easy. It made me realize that that’s how a realationship is supposed to be. That’s what it’s supposed to be like when you love someone.

Shes a really beautiful girl. She has hair that’s such a dark brown it almost looks black. It’s always frizzy and often tied up in a ponytail or bun. She has these dark chocolate eyes that always squint a little when she smiles. Her lips are full and a light pink and behind them are her straightened white teeth. I never realized what a difference braces made on people until she got hers of. She used to have real funny crooked teeth but now she could be a model with that smile. Her laugh is loud and wild and although most people tell her to quiet down I love her loud laugh.

We broke after a few weeks, at the time I was going through a big change and she decided I needed to figure myself out before I focused on another person. At that time I learned what heart brake was. Whenever I left other relationships I felt relieved but this time I knew I was in love with her because it hurt to leave her. Luckily though I figured myself out and she asked for me back. I apologized for not being a wonderful kind of guy. I’ve known her long enough to know she into more masculine guys but I’m a smaller guy who takes dancing lessons. I was a bit surprised when she told me “I wouldn’t care if you were an alien with three arms” and that’s how I know she loves me back. Appearance doesn’t matter when the person your with has a personality that’s one of a kind.

Now what I want to know about her is everything. I want to know what her dreams are, I want to know what she wants to be as an adult, I want to know everything that makes her happy and all the things that make her unhappy. I love her to the stars and back.

 

-Kabuki

Wire Wrapping

When I was younger I used to watch my dad wrap crystals in wire and thought it was a really cool talent. I’ve never been sure whether I could make something like that or not but I’ve always suspected that I could because I’m also an artist and have worked with wire before and after all, I am his son. So with this in mind I thought I’d give it a try and finally I realized that I had inherited his ability to do crystal wrapping so now I’d like to pass on that knowledge to you.

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For starters you’re going to want needle nose pliers (the ones with purple grips), wire cutters (pink grips), flexible jewelry wire, and the stones or crystals you’d like to wrap.

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Start with two long strips of wire and one of your crystals.

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Put one wire behind your crystal and the other in front like in the picture above.

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This is going to be the hard part; twist your two pieces of wire together on both sides. It sounds easy but the wire will probably start twisting and slipping out of your hands. After you get them twisted with your fingers use the needle nose pliers to tighten them the rest of the way. Make sure the wire is tight enough so that your crystal doesn’t slip out of the wire.

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Now that the hard parts over, take one set of wires and cross one wire over the front and the other behind the crystal. repeat with your wires on the opposite side so that it forms an X across the front and back of your crystal.

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Now take the two wires on the left and twist them together, then do the same with the wires on the right. When you’re finished tighten them with your needle nose pliers.

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If you have a long crystal like the one in the picture then cross the wires again to make another X and twist the sides.

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Lay both sets of wire flat across the top of your crystal.

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From there it depends on how you want it to fasten to your necklace chain or chord. For these I twisted the two sets together once and made one set of wires into a loop.

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Then twisted the other set around the first.

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Now clip the loose ends

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Finally tuck away the ends so you don’t hurt the wearer with the sharp ends.

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Now you’re done. Find a chain or chord to put it on and enjoy your necklace.

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You can use this technique on any kind of stone but the results vary based on shape. Hope you enjoyed this tutorial.

-Kabuki

 

 

 

Stream of consciousness

A stare from across the room, don’t stare at me that way. Do you find I’m not good enough for you? Is that why you stare? Or is it because I disappointed you like I did her? I’m sure she’s sad….are you mad at me? You always told me to express myself and not to care what others think but I’m sure this isn’t what you meant. I’m sure you wouldn’t have minded having a son but this is different for you isn’t it? Because I used to be your daughter. Daughter in a fairy dress running around the apartment complex, god I’d never take that fairy costume off but you didn’t mind. When my sister teased me you scolded her and told her that I was going to be something special someday. You knew that I’d do whatever and wear whatever I wanted even if others didn’t agree. I’m sure this is not what you expected. I’m sure it depresses you to think about it because now you have to keep your word, that you would support me in being myself. Now I’ve become something I’m sure you don’t like but you still honor your word because you know whether you support me or not I’ll insist on being this person you don’t like as much. You are so honorable in the way you keep your word, In the way you hold your head high and push through the bad things. I hope you’ll grow to love me as your son because I promise I’m just the same as your daughter was, only now I’m a he instead of she and wear slightly different clothes but you know I’ve kept her style. I know grandma and grandpa will probably say I’m going to hell but you say no such things. I love you to death and I know you care about me too, I just hope you’ll see in time that I haven’t really changed at all.

I wonder, do you think me mad? You’re always asking what goes on in my mind. Are you afraid I’ll break again? I think she is. That’s why she left me. She could only handle one broken person and she already had an autistic brother…she didn’t need me breaking down too. I’d like to think I’m not as broken as she thinks but quite honestly I’m only slightly better. I still fall apart when I’m alone. I’ve just learned how to be slightly less depressed. The depressions not gone though, as much as I’d like to believe it…I’m just glad I’m not crazy enough to go back there. I still have nightmares about that place. I think that’s what she thinks of me when she imagines my mind. I think she thinks I’m still that broken child crying out for help. That abandoned person I used to be. I still have my issues but at least I’m not that person anymore. Hopefully I’ll never feel that way again…….I miss her.

It’s going to be a good day. It’s not usually the first thing that runs through my mind, usually I’m worried about what will happen in the day. For example I’m afraid of what my grandpa will say when he reads the letter. Will he be disappointed? That word has run through my mind a lot these last few days. I need to stop thinking that word. It’s not my fault I’m this way and I shouldn’t be ashamed of it either. If they want to be disappointed then that’s their deal. I’m quite proud of myself. Do you know how hard it is to ask everyone you know to call you a he instead of a she? At least with friends they’ve only called you a she for three maybe four years but family? They’ve called me a she for seventeen years! I’m still worried about what my grandparents will think. My sister will be happy I’m happy, my dad will do his best to call me his son but my grandparents? My strictly christian grandparents who are homophobic…..they’re not going to like this. Oh well, I know my grandma has made her fair share of sins so she has no right to judge me…..my sweet grandpa on the other hand……oh well. no matter the outcome, I know it’s going to be a good day today.

Fighting the Current

If you’ve seen any of my posts then you know I have reacuring injuries, the main one being my weak wrist. As a member of colorguard, a high impact sport that has a lot of jumping, rolling on the ground, throwing things in the air and often getting hit by them, I know how hard sports injuries can be. Especially the ones you can’t overcome.

The first time I injured my wrist was the first time I tried spinning rifle. For those of you don’t know it’s a solid chunk of wood shaped like a rifle, it may not be metal but it’s still heavy. At the time I didn’t know but I have a lot of joint pain and my left wrist, I would soon find out, is the weakest joint in my body. After about an hour of rifle the pain began to show itself. I had thought it was normal at first, just underdeveloped muscles just aching from being pulled on but then it kept happening. Soon I was wearing a brace just to do normal activities.

Since then I’ve learned how to work with it. I try to take long breaks, ice it after practice, and wear a brace to support the muscles when I’m not practicing. Friends have told me to give up on rifle but since it’s something I’ve wanted to do for a while now I refused to give up and now I’m pretty good.

Often when it acts up I try not to think of weakness but as something that makes me stronger than others. To be able to push through pain Is not an ability everyone has.

Of course it still challenges me a bit. It’s not easy to get out big tosses when my wrist feels like it’s going to break but the point is to keep going and don’t give in.

-Kabuki

How do you make molds?

On my travels through art I have often wondered; How could i make a mold of this? I know there are a lot of methods to making molds and creating objects from them but for starters I just wanted to learn how to make small simple things. I also knew that the supplies for making molds were expensive and hard to come by so I decided to try an easier, cheaper, version.

For starters you will need playdough (I haven’t tried it but i’m sure clay would also work) and several sticks of hot glue as well as the small object you’d like to duplicate. In my case I tried this with some cameos and a tiny, creepy, baby doll face.  Before you pick your object I’d suggest NOT using a doll face, for some reason it’s just very difficult to get a clean mold of. It seemed flatter objects, like the cameos I used, tend to work better. Also this is a lot of trial and error so just try things out and see what works for you.

Now that you have all your supplies roll your playdough (or clay) into a ball and flatten it into a thick pancake. If you do it too thin your object might poke through the other side and ruin your mold. Push your object into the playdough and, without disturbing the playdough, carefully take your object out. In the playdough should be a perfect imprint of the object. If its not perfect then roll up the playdough and start again. If it does look exactly like your object then prepare your hot glue gun.

Your hot glue gun should be plugged in, hot, and ready to go for this part. If the glue comes out slowly this will probably not work. Also have extra sticks of glue near by as larger objects may require two sticks and you will need to put the second stick in quickly before the hot glue already in the mold cools. If you are ready now then go for it. Firmly push the glue stick into the glue gun and keep pressing until your mold is filled. When it’s filled, set the mold aside and wait for it to cool. Luckily hot glue dries pretty quick so as soon as you are able to touch it without the hot glue inside moving then you are ready to take your piece out of the mold.

First you will want to remove as much playdough as possible. Because the playdough was heated from the hot glue, the playdough may be difficult to remove. Take an old toothbrush and scrub the last of the playdough off your piece under some running water. After removing all the playdough dry it off. You should have a plain, foggy, version of your original object. You can leave it this foggy color, put LEDs behind your piece to make it glow or you can paint it whatever color(s) you want.

As fun as small objects are I still wonder how to build larger objects from molds such as cosplay style weapons. I will continue to explore molds and creating larger objects in hopes of creating bigger and better things. Until then tough I will mess with small molds and update you guys on how to make cool things.

-Kabuki

http://artfullymusing.blogspot.com/2011/02/tutorial-how-to-make-your-own-molds-and_26.html