A New Year’s Eve Visit To Copperhead Studios

by Jim on 2013/02/03

[Jimbaux will keep on trying until he reaches the higher ground.]

There Are No Trains Here

So, y’all are worried about the Super Bowl today?  Well, this post has no trains, but if you need trains, check out the “Sunday Sermon” post that I did in New Orleans one year ago on Super Bowl Sunday.  As for today, I’m lying low, and I’ll be happy when the crowds leave the city.

People . . . Keep On Learning

You may have seen my preview cell-phone pic of my visit to the copper artist Joycelyn on New Year’s Eve.  I was supposed to go fishing with Nonc that morning, but it was too cold and windy; so, I finally paid Joycelyn at Copperhead Studios a visit.  Despite the fact that we seem to have some mutual friends, this visit would not have happened when it did without the selfless community-building efforts of Catina over at Lovin’ LouisianaThe Courier did a great article on her and the Lovin’ Louisiana page.

Teachers . . . Keep On Teaching

You can find out plenty about Joycelyn and her work via Copperhead Studio’s Facebook fan page (and please tell her that Jimbaux sent you), but I’ll present to you a few pictures from my visit to her, and I’ll post some more later on on my own Facebook page, which I ask those of you visiting this article via Joycelyn’s sharing to visit and possible “Like” if you really do ‘like’ what you see.

Preachers . . . Keep On Preaching

I’ll caution those of you who are new to Jimbaux, though, that neither I nor my blog or Facebook pages are the “pat on the back” variety.  You’re free to criticize my work, and you won’t be censored, just as I’m free to say and do things that might disagree with your assumptions.  I follow the “I love thee, but I love the truth more” motto; it may mean that I have a lower quantity of friends, but it ensures that the quality of friends makes up for the lack of quantity!

Anyway, let’s get to some pictures of Joycelyn and her studio.  When she first laid her eyes on me, Joycelyn expressed some surprise at my relative youth, since she was somehow, based on her assessment of my photography and writings, pegged me as older than I am.

Joycelyn makes these copper pieces, and she does work with glass and wood too, and sells them to various buyers, sometimes on commission.

Yeah, she and I had a discussion – a philosophical discussion the likes of which two artists will have – about whether the iconic fleur-de-lis is overused.  As for myself, I’m mostly over the symbol.

This studio is where she spends so much of her days.  I was impressed by her craftsmanship.

She’s the daughter of a sugarcane farmer, and just hearing her voice as I did for the first time that day, within seconds, you know that she’s a product of the bayouland from which she originated.  That’s why she could really appreciate some of my recent pictures of that scene.

It was like being in a cabinet shop, with so many various tools and expendable supplies, each having its own purpose to achieve the end result.

Check out these wood planks, I believe cypress.

There is some story that she told about those pieces of wood, but I don’t remember what it is.  Yeah, some lousy reporter I am.  Oh, well.  That’s why the comments section exists.

Copper Time!

So, here she is, working a piece of copper.

I’m not going to pretend to know what it is she’s doing to this piece of copper.  I’ll let her explain it.

Now, I’m impressed; here’s an artistic woman with a cordless drill, a caulking gun, a T-square, and a traditional L-square.  On that note, she seemed intrigued when I explained to her about how I conscientiously use geometry in my photography (dig through the archives of this site to see examples of my work) as I did in my days in the construction industry, but if you really want to see one post that helps to explain both my conscientious use of geometry as well as my otherwise unexplainable fascination obsession with trains, please look at the soulful pictures and writing from the last-ever railroad delivery to Valentine Paper in December 2007.

After I visited Joycelyn, I went to visit Nonc since we had wanted to see each other for our canceled fishing trip.  One thing that my carpenter uncle told me that stuck with me is that geometry was his best mathematics subject.  The same is true for Jimbaux.  Geometry was the only mathematics class in which I consistently made As.  I might have pulled out and occasional A in algebra, advanced math, and calculus, but I was mostly a B or sometimes C student in those classes.  In geometry, I excelled.

Joycelyn telephoned me a picture of what she had done with this piece the next day.

Another big topic of conversation was her suggestions on how I could go about earning more income from my artwork.  For now, my focus is just on creating the work and getting it out there, but that’s hard to sustain, which is why you see me taking breaks from it or just posting stuff from the past instead of new stuff.  It’s just hard to put food in one’s belly that way.

Perhaps You Don’t Know About My Print Site

I do not generate nearly enough revenue from my print site, and I’ve put plenty of time, effort, and money into getting great pictures.  If you want a poster-sized Jimbaux original hanging on your wall, perhaps you’ll like my Saskatcewan lightning shot – perhaps my magnum opus – or any of the other images in the “western Canada” or “American Great Plains” albums.

Please give them a visit!

Believers . . . Keep On Believin’

Now, she’s cutting something, for what purpose I do not remember.  (Again, I didn’t take good notes that night.)

There will be a few images from this posted later on the Jimbaux’s Journal Facebook page.  You do know about it, right?  In case you don’t, let me make this easy for you!


Promote Your Page Too

How’s that?  🙂

Now, let’s go back inside the studio to work on some little copper piece, which may become part of some piece of jewelry.

All those tools, and she knows what each one is and what it does.  I’m not suggesting that you’re supposed to be impressed, but I think that it’s neat.

Do you see the kayak in the background?  Water has been a big part of Joycelyn’s life too, it seems.

That’s it, kiddies.  I played and sang Joycelyn a song, which she seemed to really like, but after that, it was time for her to do the obligatory New Year’s Eve thing with her lady friends, and it was time for Jimbaux to do the typical evening thing and sleep (and eat.)

Again, please pay Joycelyn’s site a visit.  Artists must support each other!  On that note, I will return to my world of railroad photography and will once again plug the work of the great Blair Kooistra, a super-talented and imaginative railroad photographer who documented much of Utah and Colorado in the mid-1980s during the glory years of the now-gone Denver & Rio Grande Western Railway after he spent the earlier part of the decade and the late 1970s documenting the now-gone Burlington Northern Railroad in the Pacific Northwest.  Lately, he has been uploading many of his old pictures to RailPictures.net, and I think that they are great.  What do you think?

Thanks for the visit, Joycelyn, and thanks for the help in promoting my work too.



{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Will Cunningham February 3, 2013 at 13:07

Nice pics Jimbaux! An artist documenting another artist. Doesn’t get much better. It is hard to make money off one’s creative pursuits, especially if you are the type, which you are, who doesn’t pander to a specific market and instead does what one’s own heart and mind desires. It takes guts, but it doesn’t really bring in money unless you are one of the lucky, lucky few. But keep on keeping on!


2 Catina Laine February 3, 2013 at 17:14

She’s amazing and I’m happy to see you enjoyed your visit with her! Great story, I love the way you tell a story! Thanks for letting me know about this. Still jealous I couldn’t be there too! lol


3 Catina Laine February 3, 2013 at 17:17

Of course, thanks for the mention and for mentioning the article. It’s really nice to see things “happening” because of my efforts! It’s so crazy, but great at the same time!


4 Miki February 4, 2013 at 09:18

So happy to see that you went visit Joycelyn! She is spectacular and a very talented artist for sure!!! And – a cousin by marriage, so that’s extra special. I love me some Juice!!!


5 Joycelyn Boudreaux February 4, 2013 at 19:13

It was a great visit Jimbaux, and yes sir, you have been a very pleasant surprise. Thanks for the pics and the write up…. and the friendship mostly…. I’m thinking some train chasing is in our future =)


6 deacon nitro February 5, 2013 at 00:00

Aww jimbaux , sounds like it was a good visit . anyway , it is nice to see more things in your blog , I myself sucked in math subjects. I don’t believe in this case the icon is over used. I love how she works her magic in this form , like a sword smith would forge new blades , or as a armour make would but his fine detail in a new piece , I love this its made local and really represents us as a whole , your Harley riding foaming buddy , nitro


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