Archives for posts with tag: award

Today was the big day of the inaugural scarecrow competition at the Beach Haven Community Garden. All I can say: it was such a wonderful event. We had 15 scarecrows in the running, many of them created by groups, rather than individuals. And yes, I thought, judging scarecrows would be easy peasy… No it wasn’t. In the end I had a list of points they had to fulfill, such as being scary, withstanding weather, making noise… Looking great, wasn’t good enough, as they all did.

We were totally overwhelmed by the participation. We had 290 votes by the end of the day and I got a bit nervous, as the one I had selected for my Artist’s Choice Award, was also looking to be winning the People’s Choice Award. In the end a different one turned out to be the people’s darling. One I wouldn’t have chosen, even though it looked scary, it was made of cardboard and the first big deluge (not uncommon in Auckland) would see to it.

Here some impressions of the day.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Sorry guys, this might be a bit of a boring post as it reports about our “Full Dede Puppet Meeting (FDPM)” yesterday. We had to have a FDPM as there are a lot of decisions to make at the moment. At least you can read the report – I had to be there! It was an all day meeting with every available puppet present. Even Clown, Chance and Foxy Lady came back home for this occasion. There were only three items on the agenda, so you think it would be a short meeting… Ohhhh nooo!

Here is the agenda:

1. Face book fan page. Yes or no!

2. Exhibition. How to proceed.

3. One Lovely Blog Award.

Devil’s Advocate presided over the meeting and Mouse took the minutes. As we still can’t agree on the Facebook page and the exhibition process it was mooted to form two sub-committees which will have to do some research and present their recommendations as soon as possible.

The most pressing item on the list was the “One Lovely Blog Award”, which was bestowed on us by Arindam last Wednesday. A lively discussion ensued (see below). The puppets are not big on awards (I think that is a German thing) and I have written about it in earlier posts (sushine award and to award or not award). But since the Dede puppets really, really appreciate Arindam’s participation in their lives they have of course unanimously agreed to accept the award.

If you accept the award you have to do the following.

1. Link back to the blog of the person who gave you the Award.

Here it is… Thank you Arindam (who writes the blog Whenintrovertsspeak ) for the award and your input into the Dede puppet blog. We love your comments!

2. Insert the picture of the award


3. Tell 7 facts about yourself

And here the fun started. They were all shouting out their personal favorite facts about us. And Devil’s Advocate had to call them to order a lot.  In the end each had to write down one fact and one fact only. Then every fact was discussed by the entire group (if you are a member of a committee you know what a labourious process that can be) and then a vote was taken on whether the fact should be included in the list or not. Once the preliminary list was done, it was whittled down to seven items. There were a few long faces when a fact was voted out. In typical Dede fashion there were a lot of contradicting opinions. One puppet said: “We have no vices” while another one had written down “We have a lot of vices” Believe me it was chaos! A few hours later we finally had a publishable list of the facts we all agreed on.

1. We are real (for some)

2. We are unreal (for some)

3. Some people go gooey over us

4. Some people won’t even look at us because we are too scary

5. We act on the spur of the moment

6. When people don’t like us, we just walk away

7. The motto of Dietlind (that would be me!) is: “Don’t annoy me, or the puppet gets it!” That is pretty scary for all Dedes!

Getting this list together was quite a feat. There were 33 puppets at the meeting, which meant as many as 33 different opinions.

4. Nominate 15 other blogs for the award

Here the Dedes slowed down quite a bit. They got tired of discussing everything. But of course they have blogs they love. I will recount what I can remember from this part of the evening. (Mouse had a sore wrist by this time and refused to continue writing).

Witch immediately suggested Veggietoria.  I am not surprised. Even though Witch is not vegan, she has – what others might call – some strange dietary requirements.  Witch‘s favorite site is based in Austria, unfortunately this means it written in German (all the Dede puppets are bilingual). There were a few other German blogs named, but for the benefit of the majority of our readers, we decided to exclude them.

Sunny the aspiring artist suggested Artist at Exit 0  This is an absolutely amazing project, really worth a look. Sunny wished he would have had this idea himself (he thinks that could have been his break through).

L’artiste of course loves anything arty like Fragments or  Chicquero or Anarty to name but a few. He just loves to look at sites to see what his colleagues are doing. He calls this his inspiration.

Professor and Pig are more for the funny blogs. They absolutely love ButIambeautiful. They suggested this blog, even though we already named it for the “Sunshine Award” earlier this year and we don’t want double ups.

Deutsch Fraulein (German Girl) piped up and said: “If we can have double ups, I want to put Mindretrofit forward. She writes such lovely poems, even though they are sometimes not that easy for me to understand as a second language speaker.”

Pirate the entrepreneur of course voted for  Cristian Mihai. I think there might be a bit of professional envy here :). Pirate would really like to push the Dedes for more publicity. But the rest are stalling him. They want to have a quiet life.

Philosopher loves the writing of Kate Shrewsday. Well founded stories and wonderfully phrased, that is his liking! Young puppy Lou on the other hand adores the stories of Alice’s Adventures in New York CityFairy Godmother, who fancies herself as a bit of a writer, admires Dianne Gray for all she has achieved and therefore follows her blog closely.

And then there are the photographic blogs we all enjoy, such as Photo Nature Blog or Little frank Photos or Patrick Latter with his amazing hiking photographs.

“15…” Mouse called out. We all got a big surprise, as we thought she had fallen asleep. “Lets go home!” In a flash she had put all her pens back into her satchel.

“Hang on, we still have to notify the blogs… that is the last requirement” I said. But Mouse replied: “It’s half past eleven now. I don’t feel like it. They will find out for themselves. Meeting closed at 23:30pm!”

And this is why we fell short of getting the Award!

…The complete Like – What? installation. The figures are looking outwards and the connections at the modems form a pentagram. The heads are sitting on clay balls at the top of aluminum tubes and when somebody walks past they sway ever so slightly. I will leave the rest of the interpretation up to you…. you know the characters already :)

I wanted to make new puppets last weekend, but got side-tracked with revamping my blog. I updated the Home page and the About page and added the Milestones menu, though I haven’t added the installation characters to the Character page yet. This will have to wait until next weekend.

I am now in my seventh month of writing this blog and I do notice a gradual change from the initial difficulties of sharing my art with an unknown audience. It has become easier over time. The biggest hurdle for me is seeing how many gifted people are out there, and I wonder who should read all this….  I personally would like to have more time to spend reading the other blogs and discover new ones. In the end it is no different to real life is it? You have a couple of blogs you always check up on. You hang out with some more than with others, but  it changes over time until you suddenly notice that you haven’t seen one for a while.

A big fat Thank you  to all the people who check regularly on my progress. I really appreciate it!

I will have to concentrate on my book for a while and I was going to check out LULU last night, but then I skyped for ages with the other side of the world, so this didn’t happen. I came across a German self-publishing site called Tredition, this could become plan B.

Reading today’s post again, I notice it is all about what I wanted to do but didn’t … I guess I will have to start on my Procrastinator puppet soon.

Smug Little Devil is the last of the figures of the installation. He does his own thing and makes sure it is always to his advantage. Empathy is a word he has never heard of. At first he seems friendly enough, but when you know him better, you will find out this is the only emotion he ever shows; a smug grin. There is no way you can figure out what he is up to, but the horns give it away, it’s nothing good :).

Now that the whole thing with the Art Awards is over, I have to re-think my marketing strategy for Hermit’s Web, my book.  I still have to contact German publishers… the Frankfurt book fair is only a month away. Personally I think the story is very suitable for the German market, after all I am German and it shows in my sense of humour (okay, some people say the Germans don’t have one – we do… admittedly it’s sometimes a bit obscure).

Lately I am also considering a paper back issue to sell via Amazon. I am looking into Create Space to publish on demand (the book gets printed when somebody orders it). I have been a bit reluctant  to pursue this option, as I have no experience with their print quality – in particular their colour quality. With the puppets, my book has of course colour images throughout. My worry is if they are reproduced in poor quality, it does more harm than good – Oh, these artists are picky!

Anyway, on the upside, my friends in Europe could order their copy more conveniently. So this option will get pushed around in my head for a little longer.

I didn’t want to name the five puppets I used in the installation, so that I don’t get too attached to them. But of course, when you work on an artwork for a while, you will get attached and of course they’ve got names. This one here is simply Boy. He has his cap pulled deep over his face and has his eyes are closed (one eye is covered up by  strands of hair).

The imagery used on the skins gives clues about the puppets’ personalities. Boy can’t see the wood for the trees. He has an issue with time and speed and on the back of his head is a rather large nude female torso. You get the picture…

The installation itself is called Like – What? and questions social media networks.

Recently I read in a couple of articles that the shooters of Colorado and Norway weren’t on face book. The articles claimed everyone not on face book is increasingly treated as anti social and suspicious. In my opinion it is a really strange and dangerous conclusion. I would have ignored it if I had only read it once. I seriously hope the articles drew on the same source and their conclusion is not a widely held belief. I will ask the question in reverse: Does being on face book automatically make someone a sociable and good person?

So, last night was the night of the Awards! And I can finally show images of my artwork publicly. I’ve chosen the Alien, as that is what I felt like last night. The event was really interesting and I enjoyed it thoroughly. Not sure if I would put another artwork into the competition, at least not one that is as delicate as the one this time. One thing I learned last night… There is a fine line between delicate and flimsy, and it is all in the presentation.

My artwork is a very, very delicate one, with many different layers and one has to engage with it for a while to discover their multitude. With so many other artworks squeezed into the available space and the huge amount of people shuffling past, it looked flimsy. One lady knocked one of my figures over, looked at it briefly and very quickly disappeared into the crowd. No attempt was made to set up the figure again. Another visitor, who had observed the incident, kindly put it upright again, but didn’t want to spend too much time doing it, I assume, so people wouldn’t think he knocked the thing over. But I was the lucky one, another artist had a piece of her installation knocked off the top. At least my figures don’t break!

There is some really amazing artwork there, so it is worthwhile going and having a look. The Finalists were divided into two groups, the travelling show from which the winners were chosen and the Salon de Refusé. The artworks of the second group will stay in Auckland until mid November. Fitting in all the artwork doesn’t  leave much space for them to breathe. And we all know art needs space… Watching the people, it seemed hardly anybody looked at any artwork for more than a couple of seconds. No surprise really, there is so much to see and all the people to look at too… I am pleased I didn’t miss it.

Two weeks ago I learned that I am a finalist in the Wallace Art Awards this year. It took a week for it to sink in, but now I am really savouring the moment. For a New Zealand artist it is not dissimilar to winning lotto.

They give you two and a half weeks to get the artwork to the exhibition space and I can assure you, you need every minute of it. My artwork is an installation made up of 30 individual pieces and this has to be packed in a way that prevents if from getting damaged in transport. Of course it has to be easily packed and unpacked as well as it might be included in a travelling exhibition.

The box ended up being an artwork in itself, but it is finally finished. Originally I had bought a bag of off-cut foam and I wanted to stuff everything in the empty box we had built to size. For a night I sat on the floor packing and unpacking the box, scratching my head and getting increasingly frustrated. Nobody would have been able to make sense of all the bits and pieces, if they indeed found everything hidden between the pieces of foam. Some of the parts are very small. So the choice was either to write a hundred page manual or continue on the design of the box to make it more accessible and tidy. Everyday there was a little addition to the box and finally after two weeks we are finished, just in time to send it off.

Does anybody ever have a deadline with some time to spare? Certainly not me.

So tonight I will be packing it again and this time it will be a breeze.


When I received the Sunshine Award recently, I had to think for a while whether I will participate in passing on the award or not. In the end I decided to go for it. Mainly because I appreciated the gesture of the person who gave me the award. I know she is a regular reader of my blog and judging by her likes and comments, she obviously enjoys it.

To answer the questions was relatively easy. I believe the answers say more about the people answering the question than meets the eye.

The third part was the most difficult one, passing the thing on. After a bit of deliberation I viewed passing it on as an extra acknowledgement. Not just a like for one particular post, but a big like for the entire blog for various reasons. I left some of my favourite blogs out as I assumed (assumptions are often flawed) the recipients wouldn’t appreciate the gesture. All those people who received the award from me can be sure I check their blog regularly, even if I don’t leave my mark (like). And be assured, I can very well understand if you don’t pass it on, it’s up to you :).

Unfortunately, one of my recipients got tired of receiving too many awards. There is a bit of work involved in passing an award on and to make his life easier he packaged his latest three awards into a new one: The Super Nova Blogging Star Award. The new award is given to two bloggers only and to simplify once again he bounced it back to the last two people who gave him an award. So, I got lucky again :)

The Super Nova Blogging Star Award!

I believe his intentions were to make the award system easier, by just asking one question: “Why do you blog?”. Mmmmhm. In my opinion, this question is in desperate need of the right intonation! It could be a simple innocent question (which most bloggers answer on their About page) or it could be a real anti-award statement, basically saying “I don’t get it… Why do you blog?” And then it would be anything but an award you would want to receive.

Once again, since this blogger reads my blog, I will go with the first of my two interpretations and accept the award.

The dede puppets correct answer to the question “Why do you blog?” can only be

We blog, therefore we are!

And the two new recipients of the award are… Now this depends on who wants it?

I invite you to apply for it! If you have something to say about the subject, go for it. As you have read this far I guess you must be interested, so have your say and leave me a comment. I will choose two recipients in due course!

The award was donated by Christopher Charron on his blog Off the Wall: