Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Challenge of Music Reveal Day

Tresures Found
I was are so happy to sign up for Erin's Challenge of Music.  Mom and I participated in one of her color challenges; I thought this challenge would be a lot of fun.  Unfortunately, sickness and injury took mom and I out for the most of February.  I still wanted us to participate, so I asked Erin if I could do something a little bit different and she agreed.

I knew this was going to be a difficult challenge because I like so many different songs: but none of the songs really speak to me, except one.  I feel like this song has been with me my whole life.  I remember mom teaching us the song in Brownies when we were military dependants (even in sign language). I remembering hearing it played while I was in the military.  It was played at both my grandfathers' funerals.  This song has a lot of meaning to me and other military soldiers/veterans and their families around the world.  It is called "Taps".

via Taps Bugler: Jari Villanueva
I learned a lot doing research for my final ceramics project while taking classes at Purdue.  I learned the United States military is unique when using Taps because the call is sounded at funerals, wreath-laying and memorial services. (Taps)

via Taps Bugler: Jari Villanueva

Taps also has deep meaning for me because during my time at Fort Riley, our company was on funeral detail for a week.  The men were the pall bearers and the women were the firing squad.  I remember practicing for hours and hours.

via Taps Bugler: Jari Villanueva
Our first funeral for a military veteran was in rural  Kansas.  There was a tent set up for the family and the firing squad was located behind the tent.  We did our 21 Gun Salute and then the bugle started to play.  One by one, down the line, each woman started to cry.  None of us had a dry eye, so it was a good thing we were located behind the tent.  I have to say the week of funeral detail was the most honorable duty I have ever performed.  We were there for those families and to honor the passing of that military veteran.  I will never forget that part of my military career.

Sorry for the poor quality of the images.  This was before I learned more about taking photographs and currently the plates are in a display case and the top plate is in a box somewhere.  For my final ceramics project, I wanted to depict "Taps".  I threw 21 plates and painted the lyrics on the plates and one plate was the image of the words before the 21 Gun Salute.  You would not believe how many plates I threw to get the 21 plates that were about the same size (needless to say it was a lot of throwing).  It was a little tedious drawing out the score on each plate, painting the plate, glazing and then firing.

Still, this project needs more work to get it to where I want it.  I tried to find my critique paper my professor and I wrote up because I wanted to share our thoughts, but alas, it was been over a year since the critique, and I am not sure what I have done with it.  I really want to take another ceramics class so I can get this project perfect and take it to the next level.  I think this illustrates how much "Taps" means to me and what military personnel feel when they hear the song.
If you don't know the lyrics to "Taps" here it is.

Day is done, gone the sun,
From the hills, from the lake,
From the sky.
All is well, safely rest,
God is nigh.

Go to sleep, peaceful sleep,
May the soldier or sailor,
God keep.
On the land or the deep,
Safe in sleep.

Love, good night, Must thou go,
When the day, And the night
Need thee so?
All is well. Speedeth all
To their rest.

Fades the light; And afar
Goeth day, And the stars
Shineth bright,
Fare thee well; Day has gone,
Night is on.

Thanks and praise, For our days,
'Neath the sun, Neath the stars,
'Neath the sky,
As we go, This we know,
God is nigh.
via: Taps Bugler: Jari Villanueva

Here is the list of the participants in the challenge.

Erin Prais-Hintz

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

February ABS Challenge Piece - PeaTalk

The Conference of the Birds by Habiballah
Page from a manuscript of the Mantiq al-Tayr (The Language of the Birds) of Farid al-Din `Attar
ca. 1600; Safavid Iran (Isfahan)
Opaque watercolor, ink, silver, gold on paper
10 x 4 1/2 in. (25.4 x 11.4 cm)
This month's challenge I really didn't think we would finish because of the month of sickness and injury - again.  Mom and I have our fingers crossed that March will be a whole better month since it is our birthday month.

Mom and I both came up with ideas: mom had a whole bib pendant with the different birds and water running through it.  I really focused on the peacock and the colors found in the bird.  So, I convinced mom to saw out a peacock and I made beads based on the colors of the painting.

Here it is, PeaTalk:

 The assembled necklace.  We found a peacock pattern that we both liked.  Mom put the pattern on the copper and sawed it out.  Once it was filed and sanded I enameled the peacock with the colors of black and three different greens.  I also made the lampwork beads, though the beads I made first and the enameling came after.  I actually got the colors pretty close.  The accent beads are Sterling Silver spacers and Hematite beads with a gunmetal toggle clasp.

A close up of the pendant.  Doesn't mom do an awesome job sawing!!!  I am always grateful she loves to saw!!!!

Close up of the lampwork beads.

Another image of the full necklace.

So, that is it for our Feburary ABS Challenge piece.  If you would like to see what everyone else created you should head on over to the Flickr site for the challenge pieces.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Bead and Enameling Weekend

First off, this is what happens when a hot piece of glass meets an article of clothing.  I think this happened on Friday when I was making beads for the ABS Challenge piece.  You can sort of see the shard of glass I was not able to pick out of my jacket.  I didn't notice this until yesterday, so I was pretty lucky.

I took Friday off to make up beads for the challenge.  I also sent pictures of the test beads I made Thursday night to our customer who asked us to make some custome beads based off a photograph she sent us.  I tried to match the colors as best as I could, but just need to wait to hear from her and find out which set she liked the best.

Here are the test beads:

Like that little bit of cat hair that is accenting the right bead :)

Yesterday was a pretty busy day also.  I worked on making beads for the "Beehive" necklace, went to lunch with my best friends family for her second youngest sister's surprise birthday party lunch, came home and and enameled the oval circles to go with the Warrior Woman necklace and enameled the pendant for the February ABS Challenge piece.

Here are the beads for the "Beehive" necklace:

The yellow and black beads are what I am using.  The top beads was an experimentation bead - so just pretend it isn't there ;)

Here are the beehive pieces to go with the beads.

Here are the beads I made for the February ABS Challenge.

And finally, here is the pendant I enameled for the February ABS Challenge.

It is a peacock pendant.  Mom did an awesome job sawing it out and I am really happy with the colors that were used for enameling.  Now, just need to assemble the necklace.  This may have to wait because once I am done with this post I am going back home to lay down.  I still have the cough and I have a really bad headache.  Though I am getting better I think I pushed it Friday and Saturday with doing too much.  Oh, I also want to tell everyone "THANK YOU" for your wonderful comments as mom and I try to recover from this month!

One last thing, I wanted to share two more images.  Mom and I are donating two necklaces to the Purdue Cancer Center's silent auction they will have in March. 

These are the two necklaces in the stages of being assembled.

Mom made the Viking Knit in light pink to match the pearls.  She is going to be weaving the same pearls through the Viking Knit and once that is done I will finish assembling the necklace.

For this necklace I enameled ovals in purple and pink to add.  Once the necklace is assembled I want to add ribbon to weave through the ovals and the beads.  We have to wait and see how it looks, so the design might change again.

That is it.  I hope you all have a wonderful Sunday.  I am off to take more meds and lay down on the couch and try and get rid of this headache.  Cross your fingers this week will be better for us!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Painting With Fire Giveway

via Painting with Fire
I am sure many of you know of Barbara Lewis and Painting with Fire.  And if you don't you must run out and check out her book Torch-Fired Enamel Jewelry: A Workshop in Painting with Fire.

Well, since I am feeling better I have been starting my blog watching/hopping again.  Three weeks is a long time to be out of touch with y'all and I have missed you!  I am so glad I have started to feel better because I just went to Barbara's blog and read about her giveaway - A GIVEAWAY!!!!

Barbara mentioned that there is now an Online Painting with Fire Workshop which I so want to check out!

Well, head on over to the her blog and check out the giveaway details.  What are you waiting for, RUN!!!!  Or I should say, Move that Mouse!!!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

We Are Alive - Barely

via Google

Just so you know :)

via Pinterest
This has been me for over three weeks.  I still have a presistent cough but no more congestion and runny nose.  I think today is the first day in a long, long, long time I didn't feel like going home and curling up on the couch and passing out.  Every night I would go home, change into PJ's, throw a DVD in and fall asleep until about 7:00pm and then move from the couch to the bed and sleep until the alarm goes off at 5:30am.  I was only able to take one day off from work to try and rest and get better; just too much going on.

I was able to work on the torch today.  I have a commission for a set of beads and I am trying to get a certain color combination for the customer, so tonight was making experiment beads.  Tomorrow I will take photos and send them to the customer and see which set she likes and go from there.  I have missed working out in the studio.  I mean nothing has gotten done in almost a month.

via Google
Another reason nothing has been getting done.  The Saturday after I got sick I received a phone call from mom.  "Beth, are you at my house", "No, I'm sleeping on the couch", "Okay, don't worry I was in an accident, call you later."  My conversation with mom. 

Mom was leaving our favorite restaurant, she was backing up and because she is in the Mustang, she backs up a little bit, stops, and looks behind her and both sides before she backs up all the way because she is so low to the ground.  Well, I guess a kid was backing up behind her, he wasn't looking and backed all the way across the road and into her back bumper.  Mom will say that they are both at fault, but the kid wasn't even looking behind him when he was backing up.  Needless to say the "wreck" has made mom's neck pain come back with a vengenance.  Mom has been in a lot of pain and trying to get into to see the doctor's is a three ring circus.  I am glad we have insurance (I have lived without insurance for three years and that was no fun), but insurance is a racket!

So, now that you know the long story of where we have been for almost a month we shall see if anything more gets done.  Like I said today is the first day I have felt human and mom goes through spells where she feels alright but then comes home and crashes on the couch.  I have my fingers crossed some things will get done this weekend but not a whole lot.

I am sorry I have not been out blogging, Facebooking or Etsying, just so tired.  Though I have been lurking and I have done some Pinning, but not much.  Cross your fingers we will start to be better next week.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Being Sick Not Fun

This is me right now!  I feel like death warmed over but I am at work because I have some things that have to get done.  All I can think of right now are my PJ's, NyQuil and my bed.

Nothing has gotten done this week.  I get off work, go home, take NyQuil and fall asleep while watching Morgan Freeman's "Through the Wormhole."  I make it through one episode and the next thing I know it is about 7pm and I head to the bed where I don't move until the alarm goes off at 5:30 the next morning.


Mom at least hasn't gotten what I have and I have my fingers crossed she won't.  I have my fingers crossed that I am feeling better this weekend and I can work on sawing and enameling.

I hope you all feel better than I do!!!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Taxes, Gift Certificate Drawing, Etsy Listings

Well, I think we are ready for our tax preparer next week.  Mom finished up the last of the paperwork this morning.  We also finished sending our photos and profile to a juried show this morning.  Mom also got all the paperwork straitened out for the rest of the shows for this year, a total of seven shows.

We had our gift certificate drawing this morning and the winners were announced.  If you want to see Zola and Lily picking out names head over here.

I then worked on posting pieces on Etsy.

Enameled Copper Pendants:

Bumble Bee Pendant

Flower Pendant

Square pendants - components for jewelry
Lampwork Bead Set:

Water's Edge Lampwork Beads

Tree of Life Pendants:

White Pearls, Red Hearts and Silver Colored Copper Wire

Pink Czech, Purple Heart Beads and Gunmetal/Silver
Colored Copper Wire

Red Chinese Glass Beads with Gunmetal/Silver Colored Copper Wire
I think mom and I are done for the day.  Just ate some lunch/dinner and I am going to head home and sit on the couch and work on knitting (though just vegging and watching "How the Earth Was Made" sounds much better).

Gift Certificate Winners

Today was the drawing for the NOVICA gift certificate winners.  As you see from the image above I typed the names up and then printed them off.

Names are cut out.

Names are folded up and placed in a bowl.

Zola patiently waiting to pick out the names.  Of course our helper ran away so we had to bring in a ringer.

Lily looking at me asking what I am suppose to do now.

Lily starting to pick the names.  But wait...she came back.

Zola wanted to get into the fun and pushed Lily away.

Lily pawing out a name.

One name is pawed out and the other is in Zola's mouth.

Both Lily and Zola checking out the first name - Carol D.

Second name, once I got it out of Zola's mouth - Skye.

Winners of the two gift certificates from NOVICA.  If you both could send us your email addresses we will send you the information to claim your gift certificates.

Thank you everyone for playing!!!!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Bead Table Wednesday and Giveaway Reminder

It is a Bead Table Wednesday the first in a long time and the first in the New Year.  If you would like to see what is on everyone's table head on over to the BTW Flickr site.

Here is what is out on our table in the garage.

Mom is working on making more Tree of Life pendants to be posted out on our Etsy site.

This is the completed pendant that I need to take photos of and get posted.  Mom used silver and gunmetal Parawire and red beads (not sure if they are pearls or not - gotta ask mom).

This is the one mom is working on.  It is silver colored copper wire with pearls and heart shaped beads.

Mom has this laid out waiting to be completed.  Purple heart beads and pearls.

This past weekend I enameled these two large bees.  After the last firing and cooling I went to take them off the trivets and the antenna's cracked.  I told mom if I can't get them fixed, by torching them, we AREN'T DOING Antenna's AGAIN!!!

This is a close up of the cracked antenna.  I did work on torching them tonight.  I wasn't able to salvage this bee but I was able to fix the other one.  I just need to take photos of it and post it out on Etsy.

This is what is on my torching table.  I had a request from a customer if I could make a certain color bead and I have been playing with glass and frit.  We have figured out what glass and frit to use and now I just need to make up the beads.  I had a lot of fun trying new glass with different frit.  I did actually write down the glass color and frit combo so I can make those beads again in the future.

Just a reminder that mom and I are having a gift certificate giveaway for NOVICA.  To learn more about it and to leave a comment to have a chance to win head over here. 

I hope you have a wonderful Bead Table Wednesday!
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