Thursday, June 26, 2008

More features!

Yeah! I've been honored in another Etsy treasury, this one curated by BurningRiverBeads. My pendant is the first one in row three.

My Red Hibiscus Pendant has also been featured today in SweetVib's blog. Thank you very much!! I'm still surprised at how much attention my pendants have received, since my shop's main focus has been journals! I guess that will be changing soon--maybe 60% journals-40% pendants.

I'm getting ready to ramp up my inventory in preparation for the holidays. It seems a bit early, but if you notice in the stores, they're already getting Halloween items stocked. Besides, these things tend to sneak up on me and I'm scrambling at the last minute!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Busy weekend

Have you ever planned a kid's birthday party? If you have, then you know how much work it is! I am better able to appreciate all my mother did for my parties growing up!

I was mega-stressed the morning of the party because it was raining and all the party activities I had planned were outdoors! Normally I would have been in the backyard doing a rain dance because it's been so dry (see the pathetic brown grass?). No rain for two weeks and wouldn't you know, the morning of the party, it rains. Thankfully, it cleared up so we were able to continue as planned.

As a special treat, Grandpa borrowed a blow up jumpy thing from a friend and set it up in the backyard for the kids. Here is the party boy, having a trial run by himself before he gets run over by all his friends. That was always me in those jumpy things. I was the kid laying on my back, helplessly being bounced around by the big kids, trying desperately to get up. My fondest memories are when I had it all to myself!

Needless to say, I was exhausted after the party and got little else done over the weekend. I've been so tired my newest art magazines have been sitting on my desk since their arrival yesterday, untouched. That is unusual for me. I barely get them out of the mailbox before I'm poring over them. It's now Tuesday and I feel sufficiently recovered enough to post on my blog.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Now featured in the Etsy gift guide!

I can't believe it! Now I've been featured in the Etsy gift guide for Book Worms. Mine is the very first book. Once again, I would have missed it had it not been for RedOtter telling me!

Things have been picking up a lot for me over the last few weeks. I've been getting sales fairly regularly (--keeps fingers crossed--) and my work has been featured often. I also found out yesterday that a local art gallery has accepted my work on consignment. If I thought I was busy before, I guess I'd better buckle my seatbelt and start "patting". (If you don't have a preschooler who watches Little Einsteins, you won't get that!)

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A New Direction

I've been working on a new idea for the last couple of weeks. My creativity has not been quenched by using pre-printed papers, so I decided to focus on making my own. I'm still going to continue my line of Classic journals, but I'm expanding into new creative territory! If you've been reading my blog for any length of time, you know I'm rarely satisfied with doing the same thing. I like to change it up.
So here it of my newest creations...a sneak peak as it hasn't even been listed yet. This is my Morning Sun Dragonfly Journal.

I've used handmade paper, not made by me--this time. I'm working on that--it's just so messy I'm waiting for the right time to do it when my toddler isn't around! He'd LOVE to "help" Mommy make paper! I have plans with my artsy friend down the street to take an afternoon one day soon to dive into that project.

I used watercolors for the background wash, acrylic paint for the stamped flourishes (Heidi Swapp), and a dragonfly stamp (Above the Mark). I painted the dragonfly in blue and green to resemble a darner dragonfly.

One of the reasons this project (which encompases about 6 journals) took me two weeks to complete is the fact that I was consumed with researching copyright policies from the stamp companies whose images I've used. Some companies state their policy right on their websites; others take a lot more research. I've even made contact with several companies that have gone out of business, but there are still others for whom I cannot find any contact info, so I won't be using their stamps.

When a company says they have an "angel policy", this means you are free to use their stamps on any handmade project, even for resale. Some companies claim to have an angel policy but after reading all the fine print, I discovered it was more like a "demon" policy! You can use their stamps for items you plan to sell, but only at craft shows, church bazaars, or locally. You can't sell in a fixed retail location, over the internet, or if there's a full moon. I'm joking about that last one, but you get my point! Some of these companies with the tricky angel policies are Anna Griffin, Autumn Leaves (clear stamps sold at Target), Close to My Heart, and Hero Arts. They certainly won't be getting any more of my business.

Among artists and crafters, the most common misconception I've come across is "I bought it, I can do whatever I want with it". Yes, in the privacy of your own home--not if you plan to resell it! The world of copyright law is very confusing and you almost have to be a lawyer to understand it all. Even within the field of copyright law there seems to be a lot of confusion.

Be aware that angel companies cannot give permission for their designer or licensed character lines because those characters are owned by someone else. For example, Stampabilites states on their website they are an angel company, but you cannot use their Peanuts, Sesame Street, House Mouse, or any other licensed character stamps.
Stick with the angel companies, get it from them in writing, and you should be safe!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

I made it to the front page on Etsy!

Here I am, second row, in the middle. I would have missed it entirely if my buddy, RedOtter, hadn't told me!

Getting in a treasury is exciting enough (thank you Artish!), but then to have the treasury featured on the front page of Etsy was a thrill!

I've since renamed the journal--now called Harlequin Journal--because it's a little late for Father's Day purchases to be shipped in time.

Off to bask in my short-lived glory...

***sighs happily***

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Anyone Ever Heard Of A Lurcher?

Apparently, this is what my dog is called! I always thought he was a lab/greyhound mix until someone from a greyhound rescue club told me otherwise. He is indeed what I always thought him to be, but he now has the official title of Lurcher. It's not a recognized breed but the name given to many sight hound mixes. They're very common in the UK but rather unusual here in the states.

Here's a more recent picture of my pal. He's getting really grey around his muzzle :( He's enjoying his favorite place in the whole wide world--the lake. He loves to swim.

They say greyhounds just go until they drop and I hope that's what he's going to do. He's always been VERY active. A joke I make about his mixed heritage is that he retrieves things (Labrador retriever), very quickly (Greyhound)!

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