Posts Tagged ‘Home and Garden’


Dragon Incense Burner (c) The Full Gamut Workshop

! ! ! RAWRR ! ! !

If you checked out my series of posts about the dragon diorama, here is the final result.  I spent around a total of 20 – 30 hours of work trying to get this dragon to look just right.  I was really trying to get the castle and the dragon both to look realistic.  If you click on the small images they will open larger if you want to see better detail.

Materials Used

The dragon itself is a ceramic figure I acquired which I painted the whole project in a series of different acrylic paints using various techniques.  I also added some ground cover details which I bought at my local hobby store and scrounged in the yard for some neat rocks to add to the display and make it a little more realistic.

Once I had everything glued down where I wanted it, I went back over the ground cover and painted in a few high-lights with some light green paint.  Which I think lends to the realism and looks kind of like new growth.

My favorite part is the base.  I lucked out and found this neat piece of gray felt which was pre-stamped with a rock wall design (I would had added a picture, but my lighting made it turn out a sickly green color.)  I added the felt to cover up the ceramic bottom and to keep it from scratching my furniture.

I did seal it lightly with a few coats of a spray matte clear coat as well.


All in all, I really liked this project even though I always dream too big.  While my dragon didn’t wind up “harvest colors” like originally intended, and there is no moving flames, or even a giant cavern with ambient lighting — I still consider this a success.

My dragon turned out super realistic, the castle looks amazing, and my tufts of green sponges look like real little bushes.

Personally, I think my other half is just glad I got it finished.  I’m pretty sure he was tired of me moaning about trying to get it perfect.

As always: I’m ready for the feed-back.  If you have any comments or wish to share please give proper credit (where its due), or just leave a post.  I’m always looking for new ideas and challenges.

Don’t forget I also paint miniatures for gaming  too (make a request under the custom order link at the top of the page).  Hopefully I will be able to get some decent pictures posted soon for you all to see.  I have a “Skeleton Horse” and a “Red Draconian” miniature I just got finished this week!

Check below for some more images of the dragon.  Thanks for Stopping by!


(c) 2013 The Full Gamut Workshop Click for a larger view.


(c) 2013 The Full Gamut Workshop Click for a larger view.

(c) 2013 The Full Gamut Workshop Click for a Larger View

Kew Gardens

Kew Gardens (Photo credit: @Doug88888)

And now for part two…the recap:

If you read my earlier post part 1,  here is what I actually got planted in the garden so far:

  • sweet peppers  (5)- in the garden
  • tomatoes (4) – in the garden, and in a cooler
  • carrots (whole packet 2’x3′ area) – going to broad-cast them out in the garden
  • onions (about 12, letting them bloom for seed) – in the garden – already planted – left over from last year.
  • hot peppers in the garden (5) – fewer this year
  • sweet corn (about 20 planted, will be thinned) – in the garden
  • leeks (why not? 2’x3′ space)  – in garden
  • okra (2’x8′ double row) – in the garden
  • chives (broadcast, 2’x3′ row under tomatoes – in the garden
  • turnips (2 spots.  2’x3′) – in the garden
  • cilantro (about 6 plants) – flower pots
  • chocolate mint (about 4 plants) – flower pots


  • Typical Missouri weather

If you have been watching the weather in the mid-west lately, we have been having our normal May weather:  kind of cool, warm spells, thunderstorms and tornadoes!

If it wasn’t for the weather not cooperating, my honey decided to clean up the front flower beds and dumped everything in my garden!  It took me a whole day to rake out rose clippings, rocks, and about 25 lbs. of wild onions (dirt attached).  So I got the garden in much later than I really wanted to this year.  I figure I’m kind of lucky I was prevented in getting the garden in a little late because now everything that is sprouting is only about an inch tall and isn’t going to get knocked over by strong wind.


  • Good drainage
  • Add row covers

Lucky for me I spent a lot of time 2 years ago beefing up the drainage in the garden.  It wasn’t really bad drainage, but it could have been better.   I think to help protect the young plants and maybe keep off some of the wet, I am going to fashion some row covers or maybe a “hot-hat.”  I think I will probably make the “hot-hat” because really I just need to cover the 3″ tall tomatoes and I don’t have a lot of money to stick into the garden right now.   So I will make some recycling old milk jugs.

English: Fresh Cilantro (Coriander) Deutsch: V...I’m still excited because the okra in the garden is about 1/2″ tall and the onions are getting ready to bloom.  I also spotted the tips of the corn starting to come up. 

I’ve already harvested some of the cilantro, it decided to bolt on me.  So I thought I would make a nice cilantro pesto (it turned out okay, needed more time to marinate).  I also trimmed it back into shape and maybe it won’t bolt again too soon.

The mint I think I am going to try making a hot tea out of it and see how it turns out.  If it turns out okay, I’ll go through the process of preserving some of it for this winter.  Might be a nice addition to some hot chocolate.

I just looked in on my early tomatoes in the cooler.  Yes.  I have them nicely staked and growing in one of those cheap white Styrofoam coolers.  I decided that I wanted tomatoes much longer this year so I planted them to be portable.  Well, these guys are doing terrific!  I have about four little smaller-than-a-dime green tomatoes starting and plenty of little yellow flowers besides.  I put them up by the roses because earlier this year there were a TON of honeybees hunting pollen in the roses.  So I figured that maybe they would help out the tomatoes too.

Check back for the next installment – part 3 – of my Garden Experiment

As always: comment, like, and share!

Carrots of many colors.

Last Year’s Recap

Ok, if you read my post last year on my garden I hope you were excited as I was.  As a recap, here’s what my 2012 gardening experiment helped me discover last year:

  1. I actually planted quite a few cherry tomatoes, they grew fast and I got a nice treat as I walked through the garden picking ripe tomatoes off as I worked around the garden.  I also discovered, when I hoed the garden for weeds, that if I pulled the dirt up around the plant and buried the stem a bit with dirt the plant would start growing roots higher up and make the plant more stable before and after staking it.
  2. I wound up not planting potatoes like planned, but I tried 2 varieties of squash, which got too much heat and not enough water when we went on vacation last year.
  3. It was too hot for onions last year, but I did plant 3 different kinds:  red, white, and yellow.
  4. I also planted:  beets, carrots, and corn.   The beets and carrots turned out pretty good, I didn’t have enough carrots at any one time, so I would add them to spaghetti sauce as I got enough veggies.

All in all, I consider my experiment a success.  I was able to donate about 3 dozen tomato seedlings to a local church.  I also made about 8 quarts of homemade spaghetti sauce, and I got a nice tan working in the garden.


  • For my 2013 Gardening Experiment I am still working under the same conditions as last year.
  • Limited space (only 100 square feet.)  I can’t plant more than I can take care of (including preservation), and no waste.

This year, I made up the following list of things others grow:

  •  tomatoes – in the house
  • cucumbers – on a trellis in the garden
  • sweet peppers – in the garden
  • pole beans – on a trellis in the garden
  • carrots – going to broad-cast them out in the garden
  • summer squash – in the garden
  • onions – in the garden – already planted – left over from last year.
  • hot peppers in the garden – fewer this year
  • lettuce – broad-casted in the garden
  • peas – trellis in the garden
  • sweet corn – in the garden
  • radishes – in the garden
  • potatoes – in the garden
  • salad greens – in the garden
  • pumpkins – trellis in garden
  • watermelons – trellis in the garden
  • spinach – in garden
  • broccoli – in garden
  • melons – trellis in garden
  • cabbage – in garden
  • beets – broad-cast in garden
  • winter squash – in garden
  • asparagus – raised bed in garden
  • collards – in garden
  • celery – in garden
  • Brussels sprouts – in garden
  • leeks – in garden
  • kale – in garden
  • parsnips – in garden
  • Chinese cabbage – in garden
  • rutabagas – in garden


In the previous list I highlighted (in blue), the plants I am going to get into the garden this year.  Since I have told myself that I am going to try and only add 2 new plants every year to the garden I am going to attempt the same list  as last year, because while I was content with what I accomplished last year, it was really too hot and about halfway through the season the garden dried up while I was on vacation.

I have high hopes this year for growing things, as we have already had several rain showers so far this year.

Check back for part 2 on the garden.

As always: comment, like, and share!

So, as an update to my last post on my diorama project New Project – Diorama – Conception.


I had the entire diorama fleshed out and ready to coat in layers of sticky gooey paste and was proceeding to do so, but then changed my mind.   The volcano didn’t look quite right, and my rolling hills just didn’t roll.  I also thought how much cooler would this look with some fake stage fire and some lighting effects.  Deciding that I would now have to figure out the electrical problems involved, knowing that I would need minimum a focal light or three, at least two computer fans, and maybe some LED Christmas lights it was going to create a challenge.  Currently I am still puzzling over exactly what I will need to do.

I tried some battery operated Christmas lights I found in the attic, but they are actually too tall for where I want to put them.

[picture of lights]

In the meantime i figured well, I have a couple of working computer fans.  I’ll get the big dragon assembled with the fan.

[picture of dragon]

Unfortunately, once the dragon was all assembled and the fan in place, there wasn’t enough air flow that I needed to produce the stage fire effect I was looking for.   I also discovered after about 4 hours of research on YouTube that I constructed this dragon a little backwards.

So now, I’m back to the drawing board, and I’ll have to redesign the big fire-breathing dragon to better accommodate air flow, and a slightly modified skeletal structure so I can do some better sculpting with the paper mache.

So.  It has been a long time since I have given an update on the dragon Diorama.  I am really sorry about the delayed update.  During the winter my brain seems to slow down and even if I want to be creative unfortunately, I get writer’s block, writer’s cramp, and want to stab myself in the eye with a pencil when i look at the things I create.
As a solution,  I try not to be creative.  I spend a lot of time trying new techniques, reading, and playing Rock Band.  (currently I can play most songs on hard.)
I also spend a ton of time brainstorming new work for the season.  The dragon will one day be finished.  I’m hoping to learn a few new techniques to get it completed.  I do, however, plan on getting my airbrush skills crazy awesome over the next year.
I’ll keep you posted, whether its a success or an utter failure.
Cheers all.