Friday, March 4, 2016

New York City "Photo Fishing"

When I'm in a city environment with my camera phone, I turn it on and click-click-click as I walk along the street. I usually use the "cartoonify" filter on my Samsung Galaxy Note because I love the faux screen-print look it gives.

I take several hundred pictures and then go through them to see what I "caught" just like a fisherman dragging his line in the water.

Sometimes it's just a little section of the picture that I like and I blow it up. For example, this:



came from a small section of this:


Then I take the photos into Photoshop and mess with the colors and exposure, crop in to capture the interesting parts, and apply various filters and effects to the pics to "dirty 'em up." I am in loooove with the poster edges filter.

Manhattan 3/3/16
Military Mini

I often take pictures of windows because reflections can introduce collage-like visual textures in the image.
This is my favorite of the bunch.
I call it an "in-camera collage" because it's got so much goin' on!

This looks like Beatle shoes crossing the street. Abbey Road from a different angle?

Manhole

Waiting to cross

Morning Trudgery

The Lunch Date

Classic

Lady and Little Dog

Saturday, February 20, 2016

My Sleep Talk videos


I made a permanent page for my sleep talking videos. I post them on Facebook but if you're not a Facebooker, you can see them here.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Tutorial: Super Easy Earrings to Match Your Outfit

I think we all agree that part of the fun of clay is the ability to whip up jewelry to match any outfit. Here's an easy way to make half-moon curved dangly earrings. 



Mix up an assortment of colors roughly like the colors in the garment you want to match.

Roll each color on the 3 setting (on my pasta machine, 1 is the thickest) and
tear into rough edged strips. Work with the strips on a small smooth tile so you can easily
move it around to roll it, and hold it up next to your garment as you work.
Roll the layers with the acrylic rod to flatten the them. It's important to roll along
the length of the strips and start in the center and work out to the center. Otherwise you
may just worsen gaps between the colors and not end up with a smooth surface.
I needed to muddy the colors up a bit and work some sparkle in, so I added a thin layer of metallic clay to the back and blended some more with the gold on the inside.
Fold the clay in half with the fold on the short edge of the stripes.
Run it through the pasta machine several times to blend the colors for a softer effect.
I should have used the magnet on the roller trick to keep the clay from getting too wide.
But I didn't, so instead...
...I ripped off the blue and purple from the ends and put them back into the center.
I was planning on big earrings, but not that big! I needed to make sure all the colors stayed within a 2-2.5" area.
I checked the colors against my top every so often to see how my blend looked.
I ended up liking the back side of the clay so I flipped it over.
I waited to the end of my blending to add a strip of black so it wouldn't overtake the other colors.

When I was happy with my colors, I backed the sheet with a layer of black
and rolled it lightly to make sure the layers adhered to each other.

I determined where I wanted the colors to hit inside the circle, making sure to get
a little bit of purple and green because they are prominent colors in the shirt I was matching.

I laid the circle on a curved surface to cure.
This is the bottom of a soda can that the ever-helpful Jan Montarsi gave to me.

Cut the circle in half. (I used my blade while the clay was on the curved form.)
I used the point of a bamboo skewer to create the holes. I gently poked it in and then
wiggled it in a tiny circular pattern until the hole was the size I wanted.

I cured the clay, sanded the finished pieces, and buffed them.
I made earwires out of two head pins and voila, earrings to wear out to a lunch with friends.

And here's what they look like on!







Sunday, November 15, 2015

Gift Exchange with the Gals? Play the Note Card!

Do you exchange gifts with a group of friends? Or need to have a collection of hostess gifts or something nice for the kids' teachers? Here's an idea for a gift that supports artists and provides you with a perfect all-ages, all-occasion gift. 

There are many, many choices of lovely notecards with blank insides on etsy.com. Buy a handful of different sets and then mix them up into sets of 5 or 6. Make as many sets as you need for all your gift-giving occasions. Put each set into a small printed paper bag or colorful envelope with a bow and you're ready to go.

I made a Pinterest page of a zillion choices. Each one links to the page where you can buy.

Don't forget to keep one set for yourself... they are perfect for thank you, congratulations, or sympathy notes.









Sunday, November 8, 2015

Invisibility Cloak -- a handy thing for your car

If you have a hatchback car with a black interior, a large piece of black fabric can be your own "Invisbility Cloak." A two-yard piece of 60" black knit fabric spread over anything in the car virtually makes it disappear to passers-by. Knit fabric doesn't unravel so no hemming is required. And when you don't need it, just fold it up, or don't... it won't wrinkle. Best of all, when you're not using it, it barely takes up any space.

I made one each for my mom and stepdad as gifts. Wait until Joann has a 40% off sale on fabric and you can make an invisibility cloak for about $12.


The groceries and a blanket randomly strewn in the back of my little hatchback.
The black fabric can be seen on the roof.

The Invisibility Cloak has been placed over the items... it looks like nothing is there!


Saturday, August 8, 2015

Coincidental Colors?

Do you find that jewelry, pendants, or whatever you make oftens matches exactly with clothing that's already in your closet? If I wear a piece with an outfit people will say "did you make it specifically for that outfit?" And most of the time the answer is no. It just so happens that when I'm shopping I'm drawn to colors I like and when I'm at the worktable I'm drawn to colors I like. No surprise, they often end up being the same colors. Like this for example...

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