Friday, April 30, 2010

Look What Happens When I Read Blogs In the Morning

I am at work this morning and I happen to go to Jen Judd Rocks blog and found out about a giveaway.  The giveaway is located on Susan Tuttle's blog, she is a multimedia artist, and it is of her book called Digital Expressions.  The book is now available on Amazon.

So, take a minute to head over to her blog and check things out and you can check out more of Susan's work here.  You can also see more information about the giveaway and have a chance to win a copy of her book Digital Expressions.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Bead Soup Party

The wonderful Lori Anderson, Pretty Things, is holding another Bead Soup Party. YEAH!!!

I so loved looking at everyone's blog who participated in the last Bead Soup Party and seeing what they created with their assortment of beads, clasp and focal. I can't wait to participate in this soup party. I am so excited and I just can't hide it...

Thank you so much Lori!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Dinner Cooked, Made Beads, Treasure Hunt - Check, Check, Check

Last night I actually cooked dinner, yes cooking does happen on occasion, though rarely.  My dinner usually entails just eating a piece of toast and getting on with my night.  But I was a nice daughter and I made dinner for mom and me.  A friend of mine gave me a recipe I wanted to try and the dinner actually turned out really well.  Nothing got burned or thrown out, victory for me!

I also worked on making up rings, for a commissioned piece.  I have two more rings I need to make, in the size the customer wanted.  I hope to have them done by Saturday so mom and I can go to Sleepycreek Vineyards to drop off the commissioned work and drink some wine slushies with Joe and Dawn.  I also worked on making beads to go with the owl pendant I won from Melanie on Earthenwood Studio blog.  I can't wait to see what I create with the owl and my beads, so exciting!!!

I then went on a treasure hunt in our bead stash and enameled copper pendant boxes to look for extras to send as a bead swap to Lorelei.  If you didn't know, Lorelei had an earring swap on her blog yesterday.  I was too late to participate, but Lorelei and I contacted each other and we are still going to do a swap.  I was so excited; I was like a kid in a candy store going through our boxes of extras.  Looking through the boxes it was a surprise all over again.  You forget what you make and then you open up the treasure chests and find some goodies.  Lorelei is probably going to think I am a fruit loop, but hey I had fun!  Here are some images of what I am sending her today.  The beads and pendants mom and I make.  We find a pattern we like, or draw up one and then glue the pattern to a sheet of copper, saw out the pendant, and then enamel the copper in a kiln.
Enameled Copper Pendants and Beads
Misc. Beads I made
Misc. Beads I made
Enameled Copper Pendants I made

Sunday, April 25, 2010

April Monthly Challenge

Insula Dulcamara by Paul Klee
This month's April Bead Challenge was of the painting, Insula Dulcamara by Paul Klee, 1938. This painting is the largest of Klee's finished paintings. Its original title was" Insel der Kalypso" (Isle of Calypso).

The beads were influenced by the colors found in Klee's painting and I used the black seed beads and Czech beads in place of the symbols found in the painting. I found the colors soothing and reminiscent of spring w/ still some dark colors, that to me, represented spring storms.

I made the flameworked glass beads. I used a base bead of white and then used powered enamels: Brilliant Yellow, Yellowish Orange, and Nile Green. As accents I used black, red and orange Czech beads and black seed beads.

Christmas in April

Yesterday was like Christmas morning for mom and me. The enameling kiln arrived on Thursday and the new bowl stands, plate stands and jewelry stands arrived on Friday. Mom and I didn't open the boxes until Saturday, after mom cleaned up the garage some so we could move around.

The enameling kiln crate was really interesting trying to get the kiln out of the crate. It was like a puzzle, but we could use tools to get the presents out! I let mom take off all the wood sides, because I am like a bull in a china store. I am sure I would have broken something. I rather mom break the kiln than me!
Kiln in the crate
Mom trying to open crate
Kiln almost out of crate
Kiln on the stand
Enameling Kiln and Beading Kiln
Kiln furniture and Kiln wash
The next box we opened was the new acrylic stands for the enameled bowls and plates and new neck stands for our necklaces.
New Stands

Example of bowl stands

I had to add this photo of mom's cats. Three of her cats like to sleep together. The black cat and the black and white cat are brother and sister, Max and Samantha, and the orange cat is Sasha. Max has his paws wrapped around Sasha and I thought that was a great photograph.
Samantha, Max and Sasha
The last two photos are of mom and myself. Neither one of us like our photos taken, so this might be the last time you ever see a picture of us.
Mom working on inventory

Me working on a ring

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Busy, Busy, Busy

Where does the time fly? Only four more classes and then finals and the semester is over with. It just seems like the semester started and now it is almost over, YIPPEE!! Not that I am excited or anything.

This past Saturday was a whirl wind of activity. Mom and I came over to campus for the dedication of the bronze horse by Deborah Butterfield. The horse's name is Silver Bow. During the dedication the department head discussed two more artists coming to campus and creating a sculpture and a textile piece. I don't remember their names but the pieces look really cool.

After the dedication mom and I ran home to change clothes and then headed to Bennett's to pick out flowers, bushes and ornamental grass. Mom had to dig out all of her ornamental grass because the centers of the grass died. So, she gets to start all over again. I bought two ornamental grasses and four day lilies for my yard.

After Bennett's we ran to Wrede's Rocks to buy mulch and have them deliver it. She had 4 yards delivered on Monday. Mom and I want to get her yard done before we start working on my yard, so we have one yard to work on at a time.

After Wrede's Rocks we ran to Menards and picked up 10 bags of soil for mom to pack around her new concrete edging around the gardens. The edging looks really really cool! I also bought a bush, Ninebark (I think), that is suppose to get 5 to 7 feet tall. Hopefully it is rabbit and deer resistant because I don't think my Burning Bush is.

I think we finished running around about 5:00pm on Saturday. On Sunday we were suppose to work on our inventory, pictures, and making pieces. It didn't happen. I woke up with a killer headache, so I took medicine and went back to bed and was in bed all day. While I was in bed mom put out 30 40-pound bags of top soil on both sides of the newly poured concrete edging and shoveled about an additional half ton of decorative rock into existing areas on the sides of her house. Mom does not know the word for taking it easy, full steam ahead is mom.

Monday didn't start off good. I didn't reset my alarm and got up at 7:30. I am usually up at 5:00am or before and get to work between 6:00am and 6:30am. I finally got to work around 8:30am and the rest of the day was off kilter. Ever have one of those days?

Monday night I went over to mom's and started to shovel mulch into her flower beds. I worked on the beds until 6:00pm and then told mom what she could and couldn't do the rest of the night. I told her she could finish laying the mulch out, but she couldn't shovel anymore! I told her she could only work on inventory, on Tuesday because I am in class and I don't want her to shovel. I told her I would be back on Wednesday and I would shovel more mulch for her before I go home to study for a quiz on Thursday. I have to dictate to mom because she will push herself until she is in pain. Someone has to watch over that crazy woman!!!!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Lunch and Photos

Yesterday was such a beautiful day that mom and I couldn't stay in during lunch. So, we walked around campus and took photographs. We left our building, walked around PAO, walked over to Memorial Mall, walked to Hovde and walked past the Union back to the Dauch Alumni Center. It was a nice 40 minute walk with stops to take pictures. This isn't going to be a long post, just a post filled with photos of what we saw.
Bronze Horse Sculpture in front of PAO
Front of PAO (Visual Performing Arts Building)

Photos of Flower Trees, Flowers, Leaves and Flower Buds

Bird Playing in the water in the fountain in front of University Hall

Different Images of Hovde

Images of Students by the Union

Image of Tulips on our way back to work

What a great way to enjoy your lunch hour!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Gardening and a Surprise

On Sunday mom and I ran around looking at mulch and going to Menards to pick up 10 bags of soil. We then went over to my house to work in my two front flower beds. The flower beds have been getting on my nerves the last few years. I thought I would like all the bushes over running the flower bed and all the ground cover but it just looked messy.

So, while I mowed mom started trimming back my bushes in the flower bed under one of the bedrooms. When I was done mowing we started working on raking out the old mulch, limbs, leaves and so on. Once that was done we started working in the second flower bed. We pulled up all the ground cover, trimmed back some of the bushes and pulled out weeds and grass. It now looks oh so much better and I feel really happy. I just need to get one more plant to fill up an empty space and mulch.

The next projects are in mom's yard. We will work on her flower beds and then lay down the mulch after it is delivered. Once her flower beds are done we will go back over to my house and finish up the flower beds along the sides of the house, the back of the house, the big flower bed in the middle of my back yard, my garage needs cleaned up and painting the trim. I think this will be projects that we work on all summer long, or we may end up killing ourselves.

After mom and I were done, meaning mom had to spray down the siding and the sidewalk, I took her home. While I was there I thought I would check my email, Facebook, and the blog. I checked some of my favorite blogs and I went to Shannon's site, Missficklemedia, and what I found was she wrote a whole blog about us. I was flabbergasted and honored that she took the time to write a post about us. Shannon had mom and myself smiling and giggling for a good hour. Thank you so much Shannon for taking the time to write a post about us, you made us feel extra special!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

We Encourage Touching

Mom and I encourage touching and holding our bowls because more often than not if a customer picks up a bowl they will buy it. I bring this up because Shannon from Missficklemedia said we would have to slap her hands away if she saw our bowls in person. Don't worry Shannon we don't slap, we encourage the touching and caressing!
Today was a whirlwind of activity in the studio. I actually was able to get seven bowls enameled, which I think is a record for me. While I was enameling mom cut out 14 bowls and a pair of earrings. I think the enameling of those bowls will be a three day project. I don't think I can handle standing on my feet any more than five hours at a time.

I feel better now because we have 41 bowls enameled and ready to be sold, except for the tags (ugh, I hate tagging and inventorying, where is the inventorying fairy when you need one!). I told mom I would be comfortable with a minimum of 30 bowls but I would be happier if we had 60 bowls. So, we are slowly getting there.

I was able to get photos taken when we got home. I need to really figure out how to use Photoshop so I can get the glare out of the pictures. I can't win when I take pictures no matter if I am in the sun, shade, or in the garage with a sun lamp. I hope you guys can bare with me until I figure out how to take better photographs.

Enough of my complaining, and yes I would like some cheese with my whine, on with the eye candy show:

Cut-out bowls (mom cuts out the intricate designs, which she loves to do, and I like to cut out the perimeters, which mom hates to do).

Enamels used were Cobalt Blue on the outside and misc. transparent yellows with a sprinkling of red and sunset orange

The wolf is misc. greys, browns and a sprinkling of black, the trees are misc. greens, and the moon and perimeter is cobalt blue with a sprinkling of black

The gecko's are red and orange and the rest of the bowl is misc. greens
A six inch bowl

Enamels used were misc. greys and browns

Small bowls

The middle enamels are misc. transparent yellows and the petals are Atlantic blue

The perimeter is black and the middle is Atlantic blue and cobalt blue

Small leaf bowl with misc. greens, red and orange sprinkled in there

And I am going to leave you with a photo of mom's Bradford Pear tree, to show that spring has actually sprung here in Indiana. I never thought the winter would end. I think this is my favorite time of the year when everything starts to bloom and the grass is green. Oh happiness, except for the mowing part!

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