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November 2009

More final Danger Dogs!

Yesterday was fabulous as I traveled across the Kathmandu Valley picking up Danger Dogs.    100_6688

First, we have the adorable Sport aka Good Boy in two of his incarnations by Sabala (top left) and Nara (top right ).   Bo Obama by Sabala is there on the bottom in green.   I'm sending it to Barack Obama as a gift.   Does anyone have any idea how to insure he actually sees it?   I still have that picture of a Danger Dog signboard guarding the White House -- maybe it can ward off uninvited gatecrashers.

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Above is Stella in two of her guises by (top left) Sabala and (top right) Nara.   Below is the charming portrait of Jack the Black Lab by Sufraj.   I like the way Sufraj has included Jack's nametag.

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Next we have Frank Zappa, Belle and Gracie all by Sufraj.   (clockwise from top left.)

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Here, all by Sabala, are Compass, Rudy and Red.   It is interesting that so far all of Red's portraits have a reddish background, without the artists being told Red's name.  I really like the way Rudy commands his portrait, with his feet going outside the frame.

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Danger Cats are not to be neglected during this trip.   Above we have (clockwise from top left) Zia the black Danger Cat, Lula, a Tonkinese Zen Kitty - both by Sufraj.   The bottom two paintings are Marble the Calico Cat by Nara (bottom right) and Sufraj (bottom left).

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Peaches (all descriptions clockwise from top left) has a peachy glow in this portrait.   Arrow the Black Lab wears a rhinestone collar, Ruthie relaxes and the Super Dogs, Jojo and Maggie pull up the rear.  All paintings in this photo are by Nara.

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Again by Nara, this photo features (clockwise from top left) Grover, Rudy and Miles the Black Chow.

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More by Sabala:   The finished portrait of Jasper, which I was able to document the first layer of painting earlier in this blog, Scooter and Cheeto - a pair of Danger Cats, and Wallechinski the Teddy Bear.  

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The top two portraits of Nanuq and Red are by Ram Krishna.   He had not finished the Nepali writing, so I'll pick the balance of his work today.   Below is a double portrait of Lucky and Odi by Sufraj and Sufraj's portrait of Fugg.

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Last but not least, still drying on the rooftop is Grover and Gabby by Sabala.  

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On the way in to work this morning, I saw these young boys with their puppy named Rocky!

Lots to pick up today.   Check in tomorrow when I begin the series 'Three of a kind' - see which one you would choose!   I should have at least 12 complete sets.   Stop in and tell your friends!


Kathmandu Dogs and Danger Dogs!

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Saw this cute little Lhasa Apso on the way to work yesterday.  

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Monkeys, cats, ducks, chickens, cows and buffalo - these are the animals I see everyday on the streets of Kathmandu.

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I got a lot of new native signboards on my long walk the other day.   Somehow I like this one even without a dog figure.

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Here the original sign is almost obscured.   At least they treat the Everest Kennel Club sign the same way.

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Danger Afghan!   These signboards I believe were predecessors of the German Shepherd Everest Kennel Club signs.   I find these in various deteriorating conditions all over town.

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An adaptive reuse of the ubiquitous sign.   Kind of cute, though.

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These signs are all from the neighborhood of the Everest Kennel Club.   This is a version of the Kennel Club sign, too.

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Here is the same sign a little worse for wear.

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You have to like this cute Danger Dog!

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Here is the REAL Everest Kennel Club signboard.   Quite impressive.   Wish they'd put this one on every corner.   Guess I should be careful what I wish for.

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Wish someone had taken better care of this.   Ke garne?   (What to do? in Nepali).

More tomorrow.   I should be picking up a lot of signs today.   Stay tuned.


Ram Krishna comes through

Last week, I was a bit worried since Ram Krishna hadn't even started his 7 pieces.    But yesterday....

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Here he has captured perfectly Red, a wolfhound, Ziggy and Jasper.   More hard choices to come.

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Nanuq, Compass and Rudy look pretty good, too.   All of these are by Ram Krishna.

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Lastly we have the anonymous Nepali calendar boy Labrador Retriever (from the Everest Kennel Club Calendar here in Kathmandu) and that is Sport peaking out from under a cloth.   All of the above three pictures are still awaiting Nepali writing and then they will be ready.   I'm glad that Ram Krishna is getting work from local foreigners here, and if she doesn't buy that White Lab, I will!

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The current decoration in my Kathmandu Kitchen.

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While walking to lunch at a friend's on the other side of town, I passed this studio, which says ART in Nepali in big letters.   I thought I might just check it out.   I already have two artists named Hari, but maybe he has an existing dog sign that I can look at or buy.

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Much to my surprise there were -- my own Danger Dogs Emma and Coco!   Both as works in progress.

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Stargell and Sophie were also on the wall.   Looks like there's a new artist in the family, as Hari Prasad introduced me to his son, Jay (pronounced Jai), who he said painted the portrait of Coco on the right.   Looks like he painted both, or is copying his dad's style.

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Jay Prasad, the budding signboard painter.   I am happy to have him aboard.

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Jack, the Black Lab, as a work in progress.  

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Above is Hari Prasad, who I consider my 'urban painter', and I can't attach an example here while in Kathmandu to explain why.   But his work gives off an urban feel, the dogs seem to be on the sidewalk and not in a field, like some.

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A self-portrait of Hari P and his wife.    He is proud enough of this one to take it off the shelf and show it to me.  

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Saw lots of Danger Dogs on my 12 Kilometer walk, but that is for a later blog.  

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I did find out where Gwyneth Paltrow gets her hair done while in Kathmandu.   It is nice of her to patronize a beauty training center.

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Stopped in at the top of the morning only to find Amar with a smoky fire ablaze to warm his hands.   Only paper, no plastic, thank goodness.   That's Gracie on the easel.

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Through the smoke, you can see Stargell, Emma the Catahoula Leopard Dog, Rudy, and Lucy the Calico on the top row, Shelby, a glowing Compass with a green aura and Fugg below.   All by Amar Shrestha and waiting for their lettering.

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Through the smoke, you can see Frank Zappa, Sophie and Stargell and Emma from the top left.  

Bottom row is Belle, Jojo and Maggie, Shelby and Compass.

More tomorrow.   Hope everyone is enjoying the long weekend.   Tune in this week, as I will be getting in all the final Danger Dogs.   Heading into my last week here in Kathmandu.   Lots of work to do, glad I had my flu or cold or whatever last week.   This one will be intense.   In a good way.

Any questions or comments please contact me at ampage1@gmail.com.   Thanks for supporting the Nepali artists.


Final Danger Dogs are coming!

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Above is the lovely pittbull Sierra.   Zen dog in English, beware of vicious dog in Nepali, this painting by Dilip Niroj just makes me want to rub her breast freckles!  Going clockwise, bottom left is Gus, a White Labrador puppy with her football in the grass by Megh Raj.   Bottom left is Gus by Dilip.   When someone sends me 3 equally good but different options as did Gus' owner, I sometimes choose to make one of each.   In Gus' case above, I gave Dilip a challenge of perspective and he rose to the occasion.   Again that Nepali tongue!   Megh Raj caught Gus' puppy retriever happiness obsession with a ball.   Stay tuned to see what Sabala does with Gus.

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These above are all from Megh Raj.   Starting top left and going clockwise:   If this isn't 'Gabby on a Hike' - the title of the photo provided, I don't know what is.   The pure look of happiness on her face, the hills of the Santa Monica Mountains as a backdrop, he captured the twinkle in her eye, and being a man of the mountains himself, I think he empathized with her love of a hike. 

To the immediate right,  we have the lovely Jasper smiling by a brick wall.   Another twinkle in the eye.

Megh Raj next paints the hills of Malibu with it's rolling hills of green and turquoise as a backdrop to the handsome Miles, a prize black Chow.   Megh Raj chose not to include a railing from the original photo to give more of a sense of space.   Here Miles looks happy and Megh Raj included his black tongue.   Every true Danger Dog has a tongue.

Megh Raj seemed most happy to present me with his finished portrait of Cooper the Enlightened Horse.   

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Hari Timsina of Old Baneshwor did not disappoint.   Ziggy (named after you know who) really stands out with her lovely eyes.   Duke the Weimaraner is the one I'll keep for myself this trip.   Then we have Grace the Happy pit bull that I fell in love with.   Last but not least is Lucy, a dangerously affectionate Calico cat.  

Hari T was the only one ready (out of 6 who should have been) last Monday when I went round to pick up.   He had only forgot his signature.   Hari not only signed but dated these pieces.

Hari's work just amazes and delights me.   People who commission pets don't always appreciate his work, but he has some big collectors.   Wish I could paint like Hari T.

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Again a mix of artists, Top left shows Super Dogs JoJo and Maggie in some Danger Dog firsts.   Not only are they the first Super Dogs, but Maggie wins the crown for being the first cone-head!   In the original photo the two friends are sitting on a lovely teak or oak bench, and you can bet the artists (and their wives) noticed and appreciated the craftsmanship of said bench.

As to Polly, what can I say?   Megh Raj obviously loved this dog's face and it is like a photo in person.

Dilip's Valki, with her direct, intelligent gaze and alert eyes, is the most intimidating of this bunch.   Though she is an Enlightened Dog in English, the Nepali reads 'Dog here is vicious'.

More than any other artist, it appears that Dilip uses a very wet brush.   There are many drip mistakes which he painted over with a deft hand.   You can see his deliberation (aka do-overs) in scale near the ears and especially the rear feet of Nanuk the quite amazingly built Samoyed.   Nanuk has a polar bear body with the smile of a best friend.   A very pretty dog, Dilip chose to put her 'on the rocks'.   In the original photo, a large rock partially obscures her hind legs.   Surely that accounts for the reworking in that area.

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Shelby by Raaz and Shelby by Dilip on top.   Someone's going to have a difficult choice here, and there's one more to come.  

I hope Popo isn't a stickler for spelling.   Denger Gog, indeed!   Below right is Popo by Megh Raj and Dilip misspelled the signboard on the far bottom left.  

Hope every one had a good Thanksgiving.   I'm off to one of the best parties of the year here in Kathmandu!   More tomorrow.   Stay tuned!


Scenes from Kathmandu

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The mountains on view from a friend's rooftop.   This time of the year is considered the best to get a glimpse of the white capped Himalayas.   The serious pollution of the Kathmandu Valley often obscures them now, as compared to the 80's when I first visited.

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This is the little Cyber Cafe in Boudha where I gave my interview for  BBC's PRI 'The World' with Marco Werman.   Many people here are wearing face masks to guard against the swine flu.   There are rumors that a child here in Boudha died last week from the H1N1 virus.

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A recycled tailor's signboard.

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I go around the Boudhanath stupa in a clockwise circumnavigation at least 6 times per day.   3 times for myself, and 3 for Daniel.

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This dog was sleeping outside is butcher shop and immediately started barking after I took his photo.   Attack labrador!

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I found this lady herding the three baby goats outside of Jorpati.   The mother is seen on the left, hurrying away from her kids.

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More signboards of the traditional kind.

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Way down below by the river, you can see a cremation in progress.   I like to keep my distance and give privacy, but I watched a while from this high viewpoint.   It's nice to see that they are refurbishing this temple.  

I was not feeling well the last couple of days so I just sat in my room reading and sleeping, leaving only to eat and get on the internet.   I seem to have made a complete recovery, and will have a great blog tomorrow as I am off on a grand adventure today, covering lots of territory. 

This cycle of the Danger Dogs is  now officially closed.   But you can order for the next trip at any time.