The Mink – and St. Pete Sunsets

29 12 2012

I have every day in January, 2013 planned out and am already behind schedule! Argh. Ever heard of a mink stole? My grandmother had one with a face – which is extra creepy. Google “antique mink stole” to see what I’m talking about. Over Christmas I came up with this:

Victorian lady with mink pets - how it totally should have been

Victorian lady with mink pets – how it totally should have been

I don’t like the “dead mink” idea much. How awesome would it have been if people just kept them alive as pets? Although I’ve never heard of a domesticated mink. Also, obviously this woman is an anomaly for her time, so I had to give her a weird hat:

Bird hat

Bird hat

Anyway….I’m also behind on photos – here are some from my last trip to St. Pete, Florida:

Gramps has the best views from his condo

Gramps has the best views from his condo

thanksgiving12

Visit to the famous Don Cesar - the pink hotel on the beach. From inside the courtyard

Visit to the famous Don Cesar – the pink hotel on the beach. From inside the courtyard

Don Cesar at night - with a telephoto lens from Gramp's balcony

Don Cesar at night – with a telephoto lens from Gramp’s balcony

Another shot from the balcony

Another shot from the balcony

One more sunset - from inside the condo. By the time I ran out for a shot, the sun had set.

One more sunset – from inside the condo. By the time I ran out for a shot, the sun had set.

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A Filler, Let’s Be Honest

20 12 2012

The holidays are throwing off my game, man. So behind on everything. Taking today off work though and get to work on art all day. 🙂 Much art to come in the next few weeks, but a few pics to satisfy the week’s quota:

Makeshift flower hanger

Makeshift flower hanger

I’ve been trying to resin some leaves – as in not embed them in resin, but paint them with it so that the shape is totally intact….this puff ball flower is my test. A twisted hanger and mini clothes pin works well, but I had to cut off the stem since the pin got glued to the plant. Also, you have to check it every few hours while drying to scrape off the bottom of the flower where the resin pools.

The lime earrings - backside

The lime earrings – backside

Above, I made earrings! None of the craft stores sell molds with small enough bits for earrings, so I used the plastic backing for my mini magnets – which, turns out, is not resin friendly! Hell to get out. All my bails were too big for the resin, so I twisted some wire for a makeshift bail. No jump ring needed, you can ply the end of the earring wire open.

Had a really weird dream that involved swimming in this really clear water with all these sting rays. Happy holidays and all that.





Quick Holiday Crafts (and Treats) Anyone Can Do!

15 12 2012

This week I’ve been a little overloaded with holiday events at work – notably “Terrific Treats Tuesday” and project prep for a holiday “Art at the Bedside” session ( I volunteer at a hospital). I thought I’d share here, just in case you find yourself wanting something easy yet cool to do this season…

Finished pomegranate cupcakes with “holly berry” decorations

First, a yummy treat! These pomegranate cupcakes are super simple:

  • 1) Get a box of white cake mix. I did Pillsbury which also requires 1/3 cup vegatable oil and 3 eggs.
  • Mix the cake ingredients, but instead of 1 cup water, mix 1 1/4 cup Pom pomegranate juice. I added 3 drops of red food color also; otherwise the mix looks really brown.
  • Bake cupcakes for 20 minutes. It will make 24…I had to do it in 2 different batches. Once cooled, you can add icing.
  • To make icing: Mix 3 cups of powdered (aka confectioner’s) sugar with 1/4 cup Pom juice. This makes a naturally pink color.
  • Ice cupcakes..Now, if you want to add the holly berry decoration, you need an actual pomegranate and a small tube of green decorating gel.
  • Remove pomegranate seeds by cutting the fruit into quarters, submerging each into a bowl of water and peeling the seeds away from the rind. They come out better in water. I put 3 seeds on each cupcake.
  • Add 1 or 2 holly leaves next to the berries with the gel….Be sure to add the berries before the icing is fully dry so they stick.

pomegranatecupcakes2

Yum!  They last 2 – 3 days max unrefrigerated. Now, I also had to work up some simple craft ideas that could be done quickly, cheaply, easily, and with non-toxic and non-electric supplies.

Felt flower:

Felt flower ornament

To make this flower: buy a green and red sheet of felt from a craft store (29 cents each at Michaels), and also a 99 cent cardboard ornament if you want to make it into, well, an ornament. I cut out leaf and flower shapes and adhered them using just a glue stick.

The rose part is also easy:

  • Cut a circle out of the felt.
  • Then cut into the circle in a spiral pattern, working your way to the center. Leave just a little “circle” protruding in the center of the circle.
  • Cut the outside of the spiral all the way round into waves or curves.
  • Roll up starting with the outside. At the end, that circular portion you left in the center can be glued to the bottom, securing it all.

Easy peasy! Even easier is this cardstock reindeer:

This was, essentially, my template, so it’s a bit messy. But basically just draw a body, antlers, and a “U” shape for the legs. Cut out 2 of the legs and one of the body and antlers, then cut partway into the bottom of the antlers, the top of the head where the antlers intersect, the top of the legs, and bottom of the body where legs intersect. Voila! (I saw this idea online – if you do a search you can probably find a template instead of freehanding it.)

Another easy paper project that’s super cute: penguin ornament!

I freehand drew an oval shape with wings on black construction paper, folded it to cut out 2, and then drew a smaller oval on white paper with an inward cut for the head. Cut out a triangle nose and 2 feet out of orange paper. Glue the nose to the white, use a black Sharpie to draw eyes, and glue the white oval to the top black piece. On the inside of the bottom black piece, glue the feet so that they stick out, and tape a piece of string that you’ve doubled up to make a loop. Then glue the black ovals together. Bam!

You can decorate the penguin with a hair bow, bow tie, Santa hat, etc.

Lastly: a holiday dreamcatcher:

I think this would look better with less bling-y string, but this was the only string I had enough of. You can do this any time of year with different color schemes. Dreamcatchers are supposed to be hung by a bed to “catch” the negative, bad dreams before they get into your head.

To make it:

  • Take a paper or plastic plate and cut out the inside. Then use a hole punch to make evenly spaced holes (to put string through) and put 3 extra holes below that row on one end (for the hanging strings).
  • Tape or loop your string to get started – try to make a “hanger” first. Then string it hole to hole in whatever pattern you want. String some beads every now and then for decoration.
  • Tape or tie the string once done….then cut 3 smaller strings to be “hanging” and tie each around a punched hole. Hang a bead or feather on the bottom of each, with a knot on the strings’ ends to keep them from falling off.

There you go! I think that’s the most I’ve ever written here. 🙂





The Tiniest Fish

8 12 2012

I bought a mini glass bottle pendant and kept thinking – “What shall I put in there?” Then I had the perfect idea – a little fish! How cute would a mini aquarium necklace be?

So, knowing nothing about polymer sculpting, I made this little fish:

Little koi on a Sharpie pen cap

Little koi on a Sharpie pen cap

I painted him with acrylic and baked him! He is so cute. 🙂

 

Fish out of water

Fish out of water

 

Alas, his fins were too big to fit down the bottle neck, and because he’s baked, he’s not bendable. I tried making more, but just could not get the fin-width thin enough. So…I’ve allocated him for another purpose….

In the meantime, I’m using resin to make a surpise little gift set for my friend:

Backside of the unfinished gift items

Backside of the unfinished gift items

Also playing with some great mini polymer fruit supplies I bought from an Etsy seller here:

Kiwis that I sliced from kiwi canes purchased on Etsy, and oranges I bought pre-sliced

Kiwis that I sliced from kiwi canes purchased on Etsy, and oranges I bought pre-sliced

Yummy!








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