Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013 Year in Review

Word Cloud from tagxedo.com
I thought it would be fun to create another word cloud in review of 2013.  You can do the same thing by going here.

Here we go:
  • The beginning of the year began with Focus on Life hosted by Sally at The Studio Sublime.  We were supposed to take a photo a week.  I was pretty good up to about October and then it all fell apart for me.  I did have a blast though and I thank Sally for hosting this wonderful blog hop each week.  It was fun to see what pictures I would take and what everyone else took during the course of the year.
  • We only participated in five Art Bead Scene Challenges - I am really disappointed in this.  I have my fingers crossed that we will do better this coming year.  I am really happy with what we created for each of the challenges and you can see the pieces here.  I really see growth in our pieces which is what both mom and I want to see in what we do.
  • 7th Bead Soup Blog Party - mom and I participated in this wonderful blog hop hosted by Lori, Pretty Things.  Our partner for this blog hop was Jill MacKay.  You can see what we created from the goodies Jill sent by going here.
  • I think we participated in all of Erin's, Treasures Found, Inspiration is Everywhere, challenges this year.
    • 2nd Annual Challenge of Music - I think this is the most favorite piece we have created (at least for me.
    • 2nd Annual Challenge of Travel - this challenge was pretty interesting - it was a "Staycation".  You described your home town.
    • Child of God hop - Back in August Erin had a story bead give away on her blog.  Erin was giving away two of her wonderful beads and all you needed to do was a leave a comment answering this question:

      If you are a Child of God and you can do anything, what is that anything you would want to do?

      My answer was:
      Again happy birthday and I am glad you were able to take some of it to do something for you!
      Thanks for sharing the story of Erv - he sounds like a wonderful man to be friends with!
      I would love to do something more for our military veterans. I especially want to do something at my university for them - I would love to have a Veterans Culture Center as a place to gather for events or have the ROTC students to come over and meet with veterans and hear their stories. A place to collect all the stories of our veterans who are alums and share them with the next generation.
      Thanks again for this awesome post!
    • 4th Annual Challenge of Color - this time we created our own palettes to use for our pieces.  We created our palettes Colourlovers.com.  The piece we created was a dragon - which I have wanted to create for a long time - so this was a perfect opportunity!
  • I turned 40 this year - I sure as heck don't feel like I am forty - but the proof is in the numbers.  But who is counting anyways!!!!  You can see a re-cap of my 30's by going here.
  • The beginning of the extension build onto mom's house so I could move back with her began in April and seemed to be never ending.  The start of the build began here.  I need a page dedicated to just the build this past year.  That seems all that I talked about, and about, and about.
  • My niece and nephew were here for their annual visit for two weeks this summer.  You can see all the pictures by going here.  It is always an interesting time when they are here for a visit.  They make you feel like a kid again.  I hope they don't want to stop coming to visit their aunt and grandma for a long time to come.
  • We started something new this year - our pictures on metal prints.  We have been taking pictures for years and just storing them, so we finally broke down and had the pictures infused into aluminum sheets.  I need to get pictures of the prints taken so I can post them in the Etsy shop.
  • I finally moved into the house at the end of November.  I took the last two weeks of November off so I could move my stuff to mom's house (now our house).  That was the first week - the second week was cleaning and painting my house to get it ready to show to the realtor and put it on the market.  You can see pictures of the move here.  You can see pictures of everything moved into the extension here.
  • The last thing this year was participating in the 3rd Annual Holiday Ornament swap by Sally at The Studio Sublime.  Sally was actually are partner this year - now how cool is that!!!
  • In December I finally broke down and went to the doctor - haven't been to a doctor (unless deathly ill and went to Urgent Care) in a very, very, very long time.  Mom has been after me and I know I need to take care of myself and not stick my head in the sand.  I had blood work done and found out I am Vitamin D deficient - so started taking vitamins.  I have scheduled my first mammogram for January.  I also need to break down and have my hands looked at again (they were really bad when I was painting and cleaning the house - I was wearing my braces, at night, for almost a month).
The goals for this coming year:

  • Submit our portfolio to two of the shows we weren't selected for in 2013 and try one or new two new shows
  • I have already submit a couple of pieces for a magazine but I want to submit more pieces in 2014
  • Now that I am "Our" house I want us to get back into creating - we barely created anything in 2013.  I have already signed us up for The Echo Creative Blog Hop in February.
  • I am looking for more blog hops to participate in - if you know of any please let us know.
  • Both mom and I need motivation to exercise.  One motivation for me is that my HDL is low and I need to raise it by exercising or I will be put on medications (which I don't want!).  
    I need this guy chasing me on the bike!!!
 Well - that is wrap of 2013.  It sure seemed to go really slow at times and at other times it just seemed to rush right past.

I really hope you had a wonderful 2013 and that 2014 brings you much joy and prosperity!

Monday, December 30, 2013

Completed Inside Extension Pictures

Bathroom Window and Snow
Okay, mom and I finally finished putting up paintings this weekend - though we have two paintings we still have to find homes for and five paintings I still need to have framed.  I actually have more wall space than I thought I would have - shopping!!!!

So, here are the photos of the extension with all the paintings up.

Bedroom wall as you enter from the computer room - my dresser
and paintings

My very large bed - the cats use the step stool to get on the bed

The other bedroom wall with my Rena pictures
Wall from the computer room with paintings and litter boxes.
Ended up putting the litter boxes in the bedroom - it isn't as
bad as I thought it would be.  I do vacuum morning and night.

Curio cabinet with all my pretties - you can almost see my
Lucio pieces and you can see Lucio's red book in there.
Bottom shelf has my grandma Mert's tea set from high school.

Updated picture with more stuff on top and a painting. You can
almost see another Lucio piece and a Steve Sizelove piece too.

More of my paintings.  On top of the curio cabinet is my head dress
based off of a Alaskan tribal headdress I had to make in my
textile class.  You can also see my teddy bear dressed as a dragon.

My closet with book shelves, curio cabinet (of angels and dragons) and a
cat Koshka - I actually just thought of four more paintings that I made in my
2-D class that I plan on hanging above the shelves - need to
pack away some of the blankets so I have room

Update of the closet with paintings from Alaska and my stuffed animal collection

Looking into the living room and comfy couch.  My great-grandpa's and
grandpa Lee's flags and awards.  Plus my Reflections painting.  I have to
order another flag case for my grandpa Ralph's flag and I need to get
his awards hung.  I also need to order two gun holders to put up
two of my grandpa Lee's rifles.

Memorial Wall

My stuff from my time in the Army
Both memorial walls and Koshka.  That is her favorite place to lay - the comfy
Looking into the living room from the door

More Rena paintings

The TV and more Rena paintings
Hallway with a Rena painting over the fuse box

Hallway wall outside the bathroom
Back of the hallway near the back door with my barn door
Bathroom wall by the mirror

Other side of the mirror and right as you come in the door
So, that is a look into my new digs.  I hope you enjoyed the tour - since that is all I have talked about almost all year.  Thanks for your patience as mom and I got this done.  Now it is onto creating in 2014!!!!

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Etsy Update and Picture Taking

ETSY Update - I think this is the first update in months...months I tell you.  Mom and I are slowly reclaiming our lives now that I have moved into the extension (pictures will be coming in the next few days because we finally hung almost all my paintings).  Thank you everyone for your patience as mom and I dealt with this project that seemed never ending.  I hope that this now means we will be creating more.

First I have re-opened the shop and I have listed three new pendants.  Sorry I don't have anything else new to list but hey, just reclaimed the computer room, next goal is the studio :)

Iris Pendant
Transparent Red Oak Leaf Pendant

Opaque Red/Orange Oak Leaf Pendant
I was also working on taking pictures of our pieces in shadow boxes.  I am having a real hard time taking pictures with the glass and reflections.  I have to take updated pictures for our portfolio to start submitting for shows in 2014.  This is what I have done so far - because I had to retake all the pictures again after I saw how bad they were.

African Mask in Shadowbox

Guardian of the Wood in Shadowbox

Turtle, Rose and Skull in Shadowbox

Tree of Life in Shadowbox

Tribal Mask in Shadowbox

If anyone has suggestions on how to take better pictures of the shadowboxes I would be ever so grateful!!!!

I do plan on posting pictures of the extension in the next day or two plus I have to do our New Year's year in a review of what we have done.  There were some creating things during this past year but not many.  So stay tuned for that.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Etsy Shop Opened

Our Lampwork glass beads - Celestial
Well, it has been forever since the Etsy shop has been opened - but I have finally re-opened the shop.

One of our goals for the next year is being better about adding new items to the store.

We are a little low on inventory - but now I am finally moved into moms I am hoping we start creating more.  Right now mom is working on making the computer room into a studio because it is so cold out in the garage to saw.  I will have to break down and make beads and enamel but that is only when we have pieces due or I have a lot of pieces to enamel.

I plan on taking pictures today of three new pendants, pieces in shadowboxes and jewelry to add to the Etsy shop.   Not sure how far I will get, because right now I am charging the camera.  I will post pictures on our Facebook site, Pinterest, and Flickr.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas holiday and are recovering nicely!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas!!!!

Mom and I are wishing everyone a Very, Merry Christmas!!!!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

3rd Annual Holiday Ornament Swap

Today mom and I are participating in the Holiday Ornament Swap and our partner was no other than our hostess Sally.

We received our lovely ornament a few weeks ago and it has been sitting in our window until mom put up a small Christmas tree that was my grandma's.  The ornament is now hanging with our wooden ornaments from Germany.

There was a lovely note from Sally.  The bead is from Karen Totten and the rest of the ornament was handcrafted by Sally.

Both mom and I love all the elements she combined into one piece!!!  We had so much fun sitting on the couch passing the ornament back and forth (and for those who didn't know I am finally at mom's house now - I have been for the last three weeks).  The cats also wanted to get into the fun of looking at the ornament - they loved that bead!

I don't know about mom - but I loved looking inside and shaking up the snowflakes and watching them drop.  That is about as close to snow as I like to get :)

The backside is perfect for today - I think we are close to 8 inches of snow.  Mom has been a shoveling fiend - she shoveled her driveway and then went to my house and shoveled it too (I just found out yesterday I have a sinus infection and was told to rest and mom is taking that to the tee - she won't let me help out at all!).

The ornament in the kitchen window.

The ornament on the tree with our prized wooden ornaments from Germany.  Thank you so much for being our partner Sally.  We had so much fun creating your ornament and we both love the ornament you sent us!!!

List of Holiday Ornament Swappers

Sally Russick and Beth and Evie McCord
Erin Prais-Hintz and Melissa Trudinger
Karen Williams and Shirley Moore
Lori Finney and Alicia Marinache
D Lynne Bowland and Paula Kramer
Kim Bender Hora and Jenny Davies Reazor
Becky Pancake and Lori Anderson
Veralynne Malone and Therese Frank
Tanya Goodwin and Sandi Volpe
Jeanette Ryan and Rochelle Brisson
Patti Vanderbloemen and Susan Kennedy

Monday, December 2, 2013

4th Annual Challenge of Color

Mom and I are participating in Erin's 4th Annual Challenge of Color.  Erin allowed us to try two different types of color challenge - the simple challenge, use Colourlovers.com and peruse their palettes or The Twist Challenge. I went with the simple challenge - though I created two palettes in Colourlovers.com to use for our piece.

We tried to create two pieces for this challenge - because I created two color palettes - but we ran out of time.  The last two weeks I have moved into mom's house (FINALLY!) and we have been cleaning, painting, working in the yard at my house to get it ready to be put on the market.  Mom took 5 days of vacation, and I took two weeks vacation to get everything done (still have things to finish up) but I am so ready to go back to work tomorrow so I can relax.

So, only one piece was finished but I do have the second piece to show you to give you an idea of what we are working on.

This is the color palette I created called Ice Dragon.  I started off with white and then just added blue colors I liked.

Now, for years I have been wanting to created a pendant from this idea.  I thought this was a perfect opportunity for me to beg mom to draw something up for us to make.  I picked out several ideas and mom tried to make two of the ideas work but couldn't so she created this for me.

"Ice Dragon"

I have been collecting dragons since I was 17 years old. I have all the Dragon Riders of Pern series by Anne McCaffrey, and I love the movie How to Train Your Dragon.  I have so wanted us to create a dragon piece and like I said I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to try.  THANK YOU MOM for sawing this piece for me!!!!!

So, if you don't know what a dragon is:

A dragon is a legendary creature, typically with serpentine or reptilian traits, that features in the myths of many cultures. There are two distinct cultural traditions of dragons: the European dragon, derived from European folk traditions and ultimately related to Greek and Middle Eastern mythologies, and the Chinese dragon, with counterparts in Japan (namely the Japanese dragon), Korea and other East Asian countries.[1]
The two traditions may have evolved separately, but have influenced each other to a certain extent, particularly with the cross-cultural contact of recent centuries. The English word "dragon" derives from Greek δράκων (drákōn), "dragon, serpent of huge size, water-snake".[2]

If you want to learn more head on over to Wikipedia where I got this information.

Here is a close up of the beads - the lampwork glass beads are made by us and the accent beads are Sodalite beads.

Here is a closer view of the dragon pendant.  Of course, mom modified a pattern she found for the pendant.  Once the image has been scanned in for future pieces - it is then glued down to a sheet of copper.  I saw out the perimeter of the pendant and mom saws out the design.  Mom then files and sands the piece and hands it off to me for enameling.  I used a base coat of clear first and then I start adding my color enamels.  I used white and four different colors of blue - from lightest to darkest blue to get the colors I wanted in the pendant.

Here is the second color palette I created called Loud and Vibrant.  This was actually the first color palette I created but I couldn't think how I would use the colors on the pendant so that is why I created Ice Dragon for the pendant.  So, I asked mom if we could create a dragon plate from these colors - I have an idea on how I want to use the colors on the plate.

So, this is the second piece we are working on.

I can't wait to enamel this piece and share with you!

Here are both pieces together.  This gives you an idea of how big the plate will be once we are done with it.

So, that is our pieces for the 4th Annual Challenge of Color.  Mom and I want to thank Erin for allowing us to participate in her challenges - we love these challenges because it makes us go outside our comfort zone and try something new.  So - THANK YOU Erin!!!!!

To see a list of participants please go to Erin's blog and check out all the wonderful pieces.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...