Sunday, August 19, 2012

Tah Dah!

Before we get to my *long story long* blog below - I have news! I am a proud new member of The Artisan Group! So excited about the new talented artists I get to hob nob with!

Los Angeles is know for many things. The Hollywood Sign. Movie studios. Beaches. Crazy people. And heat. It's the land of perpetual summer. What we are not known for is humidity. Ick Ugh. Make it stop! Here is where we enter my current projects ...

I've been looking for ways to expand my photos into more tangible objects. Love Pinterest. Lovelovelove Pinterest. I found a tutorial on making magnets out of your images. (Have you found Photojojo?? They rock. Seriously, follow that blog!) So I tossed Sadiecakes into the car and off to Michael's we went! Zoom ....

I decided, since this was an experiment on many levels, I would choose mostly personal images. The finished products can go to work with Daddy, magically appear on Grandma's fridge, and the rest can be Sadie's newest trinkets.

I chose my images & resized them into one Photoshop doc. 2x2 images were recommended and fit perfectly on an 8x10 piece of photo paper.

Sliced them up & did the same with mat board (next time, I'm having the giant board cut into 8x10 sheets - SO much easier to work with - much less trimming, I hope!) Glue them together - trim a bit more (the tutorial actually recommends a small mat boarder - next batch ...)

Such lovely bits!

Temporary Work Space
Now comes the part where I am a fish out of water. Dimensional Magic Glaze. Same makers as Modge Podge. Lay it on like icing. Have a needle nearby for popping wicked little bubbles. Lay flat to dry, of course, but also cover with a cup or something to keep dust from settling on top.  The directions tell you it need anywhere from 3-24 hours to fully set. Lies. Ok, to be fair, not lies so much as a very very loose guideline. I blame the humidity. It was the only factor I could come up with. At a very long drawn out 24 hour mark, I race in! They are still cloudy and just as wet as when I *iced* them. Ok, wait. What? Let's come back tomorrow. Then the next day. AND the next. It took 3 1/2 days to completely set. Now my first round, I only did 2 squares so I could make adjustments with what I still had. And there were teeny tiny itty bitty bubbles. So, icing the rest, I dug in, knowing it would take days not hours and to examine closely for the bitty bubbles. These are not pop-able. All they do is swim around. I'm willing to blame humidity for that too. I now have a small dehumidifier (a la Amazon) for my next round of experiments.

When they all finally dried - it was time to glue the magnets on the back. Heat and humidity cost me another day for that to dry fully.

Seeing Spots

But .... (drum roll ......) TAH DAH!

Yay for magnets!

Curation by Sadie

We have magnets! I definitely have some tweaks to make on round 2 - that being said - I'm a happy girl that I have something to show for my time and effort. And Sadie is a happy girl to have her own magnets ...

I think I am going to try to refine this process before I try the next idea. Now that I am with The Artisan Group - I need to get some finished products rolling out so I can participate in the swag bags!

Friday, August 3, 2012

Operation : Take Stock

Hi! I feel it has been forever since I checked in ... summer adventures in the few hours we get with Daddy, the inevitable migraines I am unfortunate enough to have to tolerate, and a whole week of being home sick with a 2 1/4 year old (Grandma gives me a stern look when I round up ...). All of this has taken me away from the computer - and it has been quite glorious. I can do bits & bobs from my phone (when Sadie isn't using it to play Signing Time and Calliou videos) but no real nitty gritty work. So here I am, trying to get back on task. So let's see what we've got.

I am the queen of big ideas and the court jester of follow through. Pinterest has done an excellent job of perpetuating this. Etsy doesn't help matters either. That being said, I am fairly addicted to both.  I have grand ideas and plans for what I want.  Both professionally and personally.  I'm much better at the follow through with my personal life.  I have taken risks that I want to take.  I go after what I want.  I hold on to what I need with all of my heart and strength. These attributes have served me well and I am so happy with the people and place in my life - I am truly blessed and I know it.

Now, professionally .... I tend to take a back seat. Other things always manage to crop up, of course. And they will. The concern is that, that is when what I want becomes lost in the shuffle. It's my own doing and I have no one else to blame - and I'm not.  I am lucky enough to be able to spend most of my days with the coolest toddler I know. Really, she rocks. But very soon, she won't be spending her days with me on little adventures - she will go out and have her own. So, what do I do then?

 Enter the sub project - Operation: Take Stock. I've realized in mapping out what I want for my office/ studio/ escape pod - I need to know just what I want. Pinterest and Etsy have filled my head with ideas for my photos and LWP shop. Most shops not only have images for sale, but some product or tangible goodie ~ jewelry, night lights, clocks, lanterns ~ something. I have knocked around a few ideas. What can I make, realistically, that would be marketable? Will I have the time for it? Will I have the space? The start up money to create stock for sale? Do I want to make lots of them without tearing my hair out? I'm not 100% sure what questions someone asks themselves when jumping into a similar adventure but these questions are constantly rattling around in my brain. The way I figure, I need to really narrow down my selection so that I know how to create my *me* space.

I think I need to experiment with 2 ideas - see which one is more feasible and fun to do. I have been fortunate enough to inherit more darkroom photo paper that I could throw. My (former) boss, bless his heart, encouraged my photography and now I have a substantial volume of vintage paper. It was their photography collection that furthered my education and love of history of photography. I really feel the need and desire to find a way to utilize my new found acquisition - I have been researching contemporary and alternative uses for paper. I'm learning all about pinhole cameras, salt prints, paper negatives ..... my mind is leaping for joy at the prospect of being a sort of student again! I have also found some ideas, a la Pinterest, for cute (seemingly) easy photo projects that might work for my images. A quick trip to Michael's when Sadiecakes wakes up is on the agenda.

And as Operation: Take Stock moves into Operation: Take Office, I will be able to sort out what type of space will best serve my purposes. Paint for the walls was decided on yesterday & purchased! Walls have been taped. I just need to prep the walls tonight & this weekend we really are transforming the image in my mind into a physical space that I am so excited about.

I have no doubt that a few months after my little piece of heaven is complete and functional, there will be a need for a nursery. Here's hoping it's a girl and they can share a room. I'm not ready to give up my little space yet!