Saturday, December 29, 2018

Art Elements - December Challenge - White

This month's Art Elements theme challenge is White.

Well, had the best intentions to participate in more challenges - this is our second of the year - but what a way to end the year. Here is to 2019 being a better year for challenges.

The minute I saw this challenge I sent it to mom and she started looking for images to use for a pendant.

Mom found this image and we both fell in love with it (the back of a dove). Mom wasn't sure she could figure out a pattern out of this image - maybe she will figure something out because I really love how this looks.

Mom then found this image of a lotus - I loved it - so then she started drawing on the image to create a pattern we can cut out for a pendant.

This is the pattern mom drew up for the pendant.

I didn't get any photos of mom sawing out the pendant - though if you would like to see mom sawing I do have videos on our EB Facebook page.

Once mom finished sawing out the pendant she then files and sands it and then I enamel the pendant. I usually wait to enamel when we have a few pieces so I can do an assembly line in the kiln.

We had a bunch of bowls that needed enameled so I added the pendant in the line. I usually have several layers of enamel on each side of the pieces. These bowls and the pendant I added frit.

I wanted to add clear frit to the white on the lotus pendant. Something different to add to the pendant.

Here is a close up of the pendant. Both mom and I are really happy with the way it turned out.

A full picture of the pendant that was assembled into a necklace. We used our lampwork glass "sugar" beads, Czech clear beads, seed beads and a sterling silver clasp.

This is a closeup of the "sugar" beads. I use a base white and then put clear frit on top of the beads. Mom loves these beads - I don't make them very often and she wanted them in this necklace.

That is quick process of how we created this piece for the December Challenge - White.

Here is a list of the other participants:

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Enameling Bowl Weekend

This past weekend was an enameling ThumBOWLina bowl weekend - with one pendant. The above picture is me heating up the copper so mom can hammer them into shape. I actually use my lampworking torch to heat up the copper (my goal, one day, is have a torch for jewelry).

Mom hammering - you can see it on our EB Facebook page.
When mom is hammering the bowls - she likes to feel them in her hands and see how they feel. She was also trying to make each bowl unique - there were 12 bowls she hammered and I enameled.

The pile of shaped bowls and the pendant. I would like to participate in the Art Elements Monthly Challenge - White, so mom found a pendant we both liked and sawed it out. We both can't wait to see how it turns out for the challenge.

Before I put enamel on the pieces, mom and I clean them. Right now mom is cleaning the bowls for me. It was pretty cold in the garage and the sink only has cold water. Our goal for next year is to sell enough pieces that we can hire a plumber to come in and put hot water in the sink. This past Sunday I actually had the garage up to almost 50 degrees, but the water is still freezing. And we clean the pieces each time before enamel is put on - so the hands do get a little cold.

These are the pieces with the powered enamel on them before they are fired in the kiln. I do multiple layers and multiple colors on each of the pieces.

I also pulled out the frit to play with. I always forget how much frit I have until I start pulling the bottles out. That is not even half of my frit collection. I love color!

The final bowls. I just took a quick picture to share. I will take individual photos and share later. All of these will be gifts to friends and my Zumba instructors.

I will share the pendant on the challenge revel date.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Editing Pictures, Making Key Chains and Gluing Patterns

New location for my new handmade teddy-bear - made from
my old BDUs.
This past weekend I worked on editing more pictures to post in our Etsy shop. This time it was earrings - and I still don't have them all listed yet.

I have been into enameling earrings now. I am having fun with the enamel colors, stencils and frit. I just ordered new enamels from Thompson Enamel and I am looking forward to playing with new colors when I make the earrings. I still need to list the smaller teardrop earrings - that might get done this week or weekend.

While I worked on editing photographs and posting to Etsy. Mom worked on gluing down patterns for bowls, plates, and pendants. This is just some of the pieces she glued down.

I also worked on stamping Sunday (Order new stamps from PJ Tools - can't wait until they arrive). We have a special Christmas order and an order for a key chain. I am also working on a bracelet bar for a friend. She liked one of our bracelets, but it was way too big for her - so making a special one for her.

I like it when mom grids out the words for me. I am still not perfect on stamping, but when mom grids out the words I am a little bit better. This is bracelet I stamped for my friend.

Once I am done stamping, I then use a hammer to texture the copper. Once I have the texture the way I like it - I put the copper in Liver of Sulfur, then sand it off and then seal the LOS.

I can't share the special order until after the Christmas. Mom is working on assembling the key chain today - so I will take photos and share later. Once my friend comes over, I am going to let her pick out the lampwork beads to assemble the bracelet. Once it has been assembled I will take pictures and share.

I am still working away with the new migrated Cloud site. Now it is all the clean up and training. At least it is keeping me busy at work :)

Friday, November 30, 2018

Victory - Completed the Migration

Yesterday I completed the migration from the Purdue on-premise SharePoint environment to the PRF Cloud SharePoint environment. I migrated 61 sites in four days. Though all I really had to do was make sure no one had add anything new to their sites because I slowly migrated all their stuff over in the last few weeks (then had to create re-direct links, hide the stuff on the old site, load anything new, and give everyone permissions to the new sites). I had already created the sites before I did the migration, so I wasn't trying to create as I migrated data.

Though I did migrate four sites before this big migration. One was migrated on August 6th and the other three were migrated on November 5th. Two of those sites were the hardest we had and I had consultants help with that migration. I created the sites and the consultants moved the data. The other two sites were created by one of my co-workers and just wanted it migrated when I migrated the one site on November 5th.

Now that the hard part is done - it is going to clean up the fixes. There is one site we are having issues with - so next week, after training - we will spend time trying to figure out the problem.

Then, after all the fixes, it is completing my whole list of other things I want to get done on the SharePoint sites.

I have to say this has been one of the hardest things I have done. But, I feel really proud of myself and how far I have come since I started this project. I have learned so much (which I have documented) and I can't wait to learn more.

Okay - I am done tooting my own horn (for a little bit).

While I was doing day job work - mom was doing some things in the studio.

Mom glued down a bunch of plate, bowl and pendant patterns to the copper.

Mom then moved all the copper, bench pins and saws into the computer room because it has been WAY too cold to work in the garage.

This mom, today, in her PJs and UGG slippers working on sawing out and sanding small ThumBOWLina bowls. She has seven of them sawed out and sanded - now she needs to pound them into shape. I think I will enamel this weekend - the bowls and maybe some earrings.

Until that is done - here is some photos I have been playing with. This past summer we had a show in Danville, IL. It was a two day show. On Saturday, there was a car show and I took a quick break and did a walk around the old cars. These are some of those photos.


Monday, November 26, 2018

New Items Listed - And Blogging Again

I am sure this is how I am going to be looking by the end of Thursday. Today is the day I start migrating our on-premise SharePoint sites to a Cloud environment.

This has been a two year project, but I really started working on it this past February. This is when we started working with consultants to help me move the two hardest sites we had. There were just things on the sites I did not know how to migrate or start a new numbering system on. So, I was able to hire consultants to help with that.

Everything else I created (with lots of help with the committee that was put together). Those people, on the committee, were a joy to work with. I could not have done, or completed, this project without them. It is so great when you can get a group of people together and the ideas just fly!!! I love the collaboration that came from this committee!

This has been one big learner experience for me and I have loved it (for the most part). It has been awesome - I have at least learned something new each day.

So, before the launch starts today - I took last week off to de-stress. Of course it wasn't a relaxing week - a lot was done.

I know I keep saying I will start back to blogging - but it has been difficult. I just haven't had the heart to sit down and type things out. Maybe set a goal of one post a week, and if I do more, it is a plus.

This is a long post with lots of pictures.

New desk layout

New setup for photos

Where we will work on sawing out pieces
One of the projects mom wanted to work on was cleaning up the computer room.

Mom wanted to re-paint the walls and then put up our pictures we just had framed. We also wanted to take out the extra furniture we weren't using.

Both mom and I are really happy with the new look and it has so much more space! Mom says she isn't freaked out now when she walks into the room.

Once we finished the computer room - I got out all of our inventory that I have not taken pictures of so that I could start listing on Etsy.

For me - I listed A LOT!

Photo by my nephew Skyler

Photo by my nephew Skyler
The above photos were taken by my nephew Skyler. He also is learning how to edit the photos and make them fun. So, I have 10 of his metal prints in our Etsy store. Both mom and I are really proud of him.

Be Fearless

Be You and Own It

Hear Me Roar

Live Long & Prosper

Live Your Goal

Live Your Truth

Stand Tall - Walk Proud

Wake Up - Kick Ass - Repeat
These are our hand stamped copper key chains. We saw out the square and then I hand stamp the sayings on the copper. I then use a hammer to texture a few of the pieces or I hammer the copper on our garage to put texture on the copper. Then the copper is soaked in Liver of Sulfur and sanded. Then it is sprayed with a lacquer to stop the patina. Mom then makes the tassels from faux suede and assembles it all. I think mom and I have the most fun coming up with the sayings. We even have had friends give us ideas.
Heart Balloon pendant

Hummingbird pendant

Blue Shell Turtle pendant

Stenciled Elephant pendant

Heart Pendant
Horse pendant

Yellow/Green Shell Turtle pendant

Frog pendant

Orange Shell Turtle Pendant

Purple Shell Turtle Pendant

Red Stenciled Elephant Pendant

Grey/Purple Heart Pendant
These are just some of the new handsawed out and enameled pendants that I have listed in the Etsy shop. I still need to work on the double-sided pendants and get them edited and then listed. I just need to take it slowly.

Bee Dog Tag

Forest and Pond Dog Tag

Abstract Tree Dog Tag
I also listed new "Photo Dog Tags". These are photos (and my nephew's photos) that have been infused into aluminum. They are listed with the other dog tags in the Etsy shop.

Faux Leather Enameled Copper Cuff

Faux Leather Enameled Copper Cuff

Faux Leather Enameled Copper Cuff
Faux Leather Enameled Copper Cuff
Not for sale - dandelion enameled copper bar on faux leather bracelet
Not for sale - dandelion enameled copper bar on faux leather bracelet
I have just started making these enameled copper bracelet bars and attaching them to faux leather bracelets that are adjustable. The dandelion bracelet bar is for me - plus I wanted to test wear these bracelets to make sure they would hold up. I figure if they last with me anyone can wear them. I have the two listed in the shop now and I have several in the works.

Enameled copper earrings
Today I took photos of our enameled copper earrings. I now have to go through them all, pick the best photos, edit the photos and then list in our Etsy shop. That will take a while, but I will get it done.

I will try and do better on the blogging - plus I have to share with you if I survive the following week of migration. I am being positive. Everything is in place - I just have to redirect everyone to the sites and give them the directions. Of course that means that people actual have to read the directions first. But I am being positive!
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