Monday, August 23, 2010

New Items!

I really have been working this summer...even if i havent posted much. This is my third batch of new pieces this summer. I generally do between 25 and 50 pieces at a time--it seems to go better, lets me get the juices flowing.
The dragon pieces are new. I made a few of them in the last batch, and they seemed to go over pretty well. The dragons are Tibetan Silver, a really good weight and feel, and I got them from fellow Etsyian, Leslietsy. She has some really great items! The leaves, peace sign, and Eiffel Tower are from her, as well. The other metal pieces are from Yomama, another wonderful Etsy shop.
The milky lime-green pieces up on top have an interesting beginning. When I did the Waterloo show in June, I was situated next to my friend Kimberly of Monaco Designs. She had beautiful pieces, and on the table had this artsy glass dish with her smaller items in it. While packing up, unfortunately, the dish went crashing to the pavement and shattered. She donated the broken pieces to my stash of glass. I've already made (and sold) a couple hearts and teardrops, here's another 5 pieces. It's such a unique color and texture, as well as being nearly flat which makes it easier to deal with.
So...this marks my official debut using glass other than bottles! It opens me up to other sources-vintage glass, art glass, contemporary glass...anything! That means now I'll be looking for collectible glass, vintage glass that maybe chipped or cracked and has very little value to anyone else, but I can make nice jewelry from it.
****This means I can stop drinking! Just kidding, but lately I've been buying more bottles just to recycle them into jewelry-does that still count?

But, a question for you...this is a new design I just did-a bit different, more sculptural. What do you think of it? Should I continue exploring this? Leave your thoughts in the comments for me!

Monday, July 5, 2010


i havent had the heart to post anything here this week. Sometimes when life comes at you too fast, it takes too much time to write it. So here's an edited version.

I know i just posted about my neighborhood and working to make it a place for artists to gather and work. I have another artist who is using my garage to do his sculptures in return for helping me with maintenance, and I'd love to be able to hold classes on fabric dyeing and fabric printing, papermaking, photography, screenprinting, whatever. Heck, I just want to be able to go there and do my own work!

However, I finally think I'm done dreaming about that. I think it's time to move on. Just the next day after I wrote my last post, I went to my house to take some photos of my jewelry to put online. As I turned the corner, that all-to familiar dread took root in the pit of my stomach as I noticed my screen door was open.

That only means one thing: someone was trying to break in again. I was confident that they couldn't GET in, for my back door was bolted and barred with a metal bar, and all my windows on the bottom floor were boarded up on the inside. Outside, the house looked innocent and open. Inside, it looked like Fort Knox.

Well, what can I say? If they're determined to get in, there's no way you can keep them out.

It looks like they took a crowbar to the back doorframe by the hinges because there was a dent in the door--did I say it was a steel door? The door was lying flat on the ground, still attached to the frame. They walked over it to get in the house.

It doesn't appear that they took anything important--i didn't live there, so there wasn't anything of value there, but they went through all my drawers and closet shelves, even the refrigerator, leaving everything open. I do know they took something, for my carry-on bag with wheels and handle that I pack my displays in for art shows is missing. I know they didn't want that for itself, so they must have used it to carry something out. I just don't know what-unless it was some of the wine bottles I kept in the fridge--I keep a couple dozen bottles in their to help maintain the coldness. Maybe they thought the ones that had caps on still were wine? Now, that would be so ironic, stealing wine bottles and then finding out they were just full of water??

Frankly, I'm tired...tired of the worry, tired of dealing with the residue. Tired of putting off painting the faded aluminum siding because I know that, as soon as I do, they'll rip it off for scrap. Tired of being tired. It's time for me to let go and move on. I may have the opportunity to do this again, but I won't go it alone. IF I get another studio, I'll have someone there to help me create it. And I won't be so torn between 3 different lives that I can't get any work done.

It's time for me to get ALL areas of my life together so I can focus on what I do best: making art.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Being Swept up in the Tides of Change

One of my favorite songs was an underground band singing a song from the musical, South Pacific...I don't even know the band or the name of the song, I just know the phrase that stayed in my mind: 'If you don't have a dream, how you gonna have a dream come true?'

Sometimes we get what we wish for. Sometimes, we put things into motion and before we know it, they are happening and we'd better wake up and get with it, or miss out and its our own fault!

A few years ago, my friend had a Manifestation Party where we made collages from magazine clippings, words and pictures that resonated with us and illustrated things we'd like to accomplish or do. I worked on mine for months after that, until I think I got a clear vision of what I'd like to be and do.

Then I let it sit.

Now, a few years later, I can pull them out and look at them, and I'm amazed at how far I've come and how much on that collaged list I've accomplished.

--> I wanted to do photography (I didn't even have a digital camera at that point) Now, I'm a professional photographer; I do school portraits as well as doing fan photos during Major league baseball games...and freelance work for the Pittsburgh Pirates. Of course, it helps if you've become good friends with their photographer! Dave has been so supportive and helpful in ANYthing I've wanted to do, its amazing. He's also taught me so much in Photoshop!

--> I wanted to sell my artwork and jewelry full time, attempting to supply a good part of my income with it. I had collaged 'online', 'galleries', 'shows' on my page, and I now have a website, an Etsy site, I'm doing shows, and am currently in 7 galleries.

--> I wanted to help re-create a safe and artsy neighborhood in the run-down, drug-infested area where my old house is--and now I'm living there, meeting people and starting to make contacts with others of a like mind and throwing some ideas out there. It was starting to work until I had to move in to take care of my Dad on the other side of town. I may or may not be able to go back and work again with them on depends more on whether I've moved on or I'm still impassioned by it. It may just be time to let go. The point is, I did work on it.

--> I wanted to travel, and I have photos of planes, working on a laptop in different locations, lots of roadmaps. I'm not sure what that will lead into, but stay tuned because I'm seeing hints and opportunities that are just beginning. However, I did go to Florida for 4 days and came away with 3 gallery opportunities, one of which has become a very good venue--Back Alley Gifts in Bradenton Beach is a fantastically fun and active shop with so many things to do-its not just a gift shop, but a place to go, a place to have fun!

--> I wanted to have my morning breakfast/coffee outdoors on the balcony and typing away on my computer. I had in mind a balcony overlooking the ocean, but this is getting closer: right now I'm typing this on a patio on my laptop with my coffee in the morning sun, listening to the birds. It's a start!

I have other things as well, entertaining, exploring, learning, organizing, creating...all these things are beginning to happen as well. I truly believe, had I not done these pages, my life would be one long slide, drifting into nothing but missed opportunities.

I know my friend believes that doing these pages 'puts these longings out there in the universe' and then they are attracted to you. That's one way of looking at it, but my point of view is a bit different. I believe it's the same thing they tell entrepreneurs to do (goal-setting), or businesses when they want to grow (business plans). I believe it's more a matter of clarifying in your own mind just what you really want to do.

The example I gave someone the other day when we were discussing this was, when my children were little and we were on a drive, I'd start the game, see how many VW beetles you can find. Once they started looking, those darn cars were EVERYwhere! Now, by putting that thought out into the universe, did my children just attract these cars to our area? Or, were they always there but we just never noticed?

So, I truly believe that, call it what you will, if you take the time to Dream, to discover your desires, to put down on paper either as a list or a visual collage all the things you'd really like to do, then your mind will become involved and you will start noticing opportunities and you will start making headway in directions you never focused on before.

You just may have your own dreams start coming true.

Monday, June 14, 2010


I was featured in a treasury this of yellow, cobalt blue and aqua. What a summery, wonderful color combination! Take a buzz over and check it out--there are some awesome selections here! Aqua, yellow, blue...who knew?

And, while you're off doing that, I'm off cutting more fantastic pieces with my New Taurus Ring Saw!!
Just wait til you see the hearts and cool shapes I can cut now--and the BEST thing is, the blade WON'T cut my finger (fingernail, yes but finger, no) meaning I can get in there with the tiniest of details...........
I'm trying to make other shapes for some new ideas I have (note the little green triangles and the brown squiggle shape...). These pieces are smaller than I've been working with in the past. I'm trying to get pendants more suitable for those of us who don't like wearing large pieces as well as trying for some earring styles.
Here I'm showing you just a couple boxes of my stash ready to play with...see the Crown Royal, the brown Cointreau and yes, that's a Fanta soda pop bottle!!
Here's a picture of my temporary workspace at the apartment. Normally I'd be working at my studio but I don't want to be gone all day today so I brought my saw here.
The saw does throw off little specks of glass, so you have to wear face and eye poor plant won't know what hit it!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

I am Up and Running Again!!

I did it!! took my computer in and got it cleaned out (2 gig of internet temp files!) but it still didn't run well when I got it home. The techie said I needed more RAM as I only had 512 mb.

So I ordered 2 1-gig memory cards. They came today in the mail and I installed them and Whoa Momma! now my computer is fast and responsive to my every touch!!!
Now I want to order some for my laptop as its been so terribly slow that I hardly use it anymore.

I also want to install my wireless so I can sit out on the patio and do my blogging, listing, or other internet maintenance...or at least sit in the living room with my dad instead of being so reclusive in my bedroom all night, every night.

So-that means pretty soon I'll be back updating my sites and uploading more jewelry and artwork!!

It'll be so nice to be in touch with the outside world again...

Saturday, May 22, 2010

It's ShowTime!!

The 41st Hessler Street Fair is this weekend (May 22, 23) and I'm going to be there!!
(stop by if you happen to be in the area--non-stop music, great food, and cool art! It's the original hippie street fair and hasn't changed too much! I'll be in booth 52.)

This is the fair that started it all for me last year--I applied at the last minute and they still had a spot and it was the first show I'd done in years, and the absolut first (oops, that's AbsolutE-you can tell I've been working with the liquor bottles way too much!) anyway, the absolutE first show I'd done with my jewelry.

It was so gratifying to see the response--and sales--from people, plus being found by Joe from La Lanterna Gallery in nearby Little Italy. It was this show that made me decide to Go For It with my artwork.

So, here it is, 1 year later...I'm in 6 galleries with a few more in the works, I have my blog (2 of them; this one and for my wackier side), website, FB page, Twitter account, name is registered, vendor's license in place, I have my own studio, and I'm ready to pay taxes!

Now that's as official as you can get!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Magically Delicious!

I've just posted another entry in my other blog, BoHoExpress...this is where I record things that inspire me, interest me, or in any way make my heart sing.
Now that that's finished, I need to get busy on making more jewelry. I've somewhat cleaned up my space-or at least enough to work in again-so I've no excuse!

My jewelry is selling at a nice pace, I'm happy to say. I love having galleries to work for me even while I'm concentrating on other things, but on the other hand, I tend to get discouraged thinking nothing is selling until the end of the month when I unexpectedly receive checks in the mail and I'm amazed at how well I did!

And I did do well this the point I need to replenish a couple of the galleries.
Now, that's a happy day!