Saturday, October 11, 2014

Rainy, rainy Saturday

Rainy days have ALWAYS been my favorite types of days.  I don't like the sun (I am soooo pale...with freckles), and I hate the heat.  So, I become energized on these days.  So I am hitting the studio all day long - with breaks to look out the window around the corner at the gray skies - and could not be happier!  I know...strange...

Just a few new things to show you so far since my last post.  I was gifted a set of beads, by the most awesome Catherine Pruitt of BooBeads (go see her beautiful jewelry in her shop right here).  These beads are made by Cindy Gimbrone and have the most lovely hearts!  One of the beads is a large hole bead.  I don't work with fibers, i.e., leather, silk etc., So, I spent some time trying to figure out how to use all the beads from the set in one piece.  

The focal on the bracelet below does just that.  I took about an inch and a half of very heavy silver, added some silver coil, and slipped the large hole bead in between.  I am so excited with this, as the disc bead moves, while everything else remains stationary.

I have begun creating another bracelet, similar to the above, as I have discovered that I have quite a few large hole beads in my stash.

These are my favorite hoops - to date - as hoops will always remain my favorite style.

These are actually tiny - for me!  The hoop is only 3/4 inch in diameter.  I did not antique these this time...the silver spoke to me and said "keep me shiny"!  So I did.

I made one more pair of earrings with the Inviciti Pewter charms.  I have had these rough-cut garnet chunks in my gemstone box for way too long.

Gorgeous aurora borealis (AB) finish that flashes peacock shades of blue, green and gold.  The bracelets below are my FAVORITES!

The one on the top is from a Kerry Bogert tutorial.  The bottom one - I just played with wire.  This one is so cool:

Just a twist of a long length of 12 gauge wire - I am hoping this is not a fluke and I duplicate the design - ha!

Back to work - I hope you all enjoy your weekend!  Thanks for stopping by!

PS - The horses at Miracle Horse Rescue are in desperate need of funds for hay, so having a little mini sale in my shop to help where I can.  Everyone suffers in this rotten economy, especially the non-profits.



Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Lights, Cameras, know the rest!

In my last post, I talked about my revelation in utilizing an 18% Photo Gray Board for taking pictures.  Several people on Facebook messaged me and wanted more information regarding the lights that I use.

In addition to a myriad of backgrounds for my photos, I have tried many different light setups.  Again - my studio has always been in a basement, and natural light is simply not easily accessible.  First off, I use a Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W690 16.1 MP Digital Camera with 10x Optical Zoom - phew...that is a mouthful!  It is available here.  I sadly left my previous Sony Cyber-shot at a friend's 60th birthday party celebration - it was at a hotel, and by the time I realized it was not in my purse (days was a party, people!!), it was too late.  So, I upgraded to my current camera.  It took me a couple of months to become accustomed to the automatic macro setting.  Angles are everything - if I am off just a bit, my subject is blurry in all the wrong places!  But, I am used to it now, and love it as much as my old Sony.

These are the lights that I use.

Yes - they are large BUT they are at all heavy.

I intentionally have them set up this way - one sits horizontal to my table, and the other sits portrait.  I don't know why, but this particular spread of the lights works best for my pictures.  The lights are available here.

No shadows - and true, true colors - so important to someone who is selling jewelry made with beads!

The description on Amazon states that these lights are portable, and technically, they are.  However, there are metal rods inserted into the jacket of the light - it took a bit of time to install these - so, I personally would not want to break these down, carry them with me, and set them up again.  For my stationary-at-all-times purpose, they work wonderful.  

There.  Those are my lights and my camera!

I have made a few things, as well.  Sue Kennedy of SueBeads was selling strands of orphan lampwork beads.  Nothing wrong with these beads, they were simply leftovers.  I ADORE the color green, but I rarely work with it - so I wanted a challenge and bought the strand below.

Yesterday, I made this necklace.

Personally, I love it when the beads don't match.  Typically, when making bracelets  I add a copper or silver bead to a lampwork strand, just to keep the eye moving around the piece.  Anyway, I wanted to make a pendant styled necklace, so I spiced up the design just a tad by making the mixed metal focal.  I soldered a sterling silver disc (stamped and domed first) to a copper backplate and added some eyelets.

Necklaces remain - for me - the hardest thing in the world to photograph - I don't care what kind of lights or backgrounds I use!

Much as I hate photographing necklaces, I made another one, also with Sue's beads - her Chicklets to be exact, in an awesome Black Metallic finish that flashes gold and purple when you turn the beads.

I paired Sue's Chicklets with Rachel Bishop's (Puffafish) nuggets - same type of black metallic finish, but a different flash of color.

That's a Cindy Wimmer link connecting all those beautiful beads.

I made the necklace large enough to just slip over the head - no clasp!

I wear a version of these copper hoops almost daily, so I added one to my shop.

The brass bangles below sold almost as soon as I listed them - I love that when that happens (it does not happen often!)  

I also found a new shop on Etsy, courtesy of a shout out by Nikki of Love Root.  Look at these gorgeous, crusty, ancient looking relics!  These are hand made, lead free pewter.  The shop is Inviciti, and I could do some serious damage to my wallet in this shop.

So far, I have only made one pair of earrings with these lovelies, which I topped with a trio of ancient looking Czech Glass beads.

So this is what I have been up to - not sure what I will make next.  I hope you have had a productive week as well!

Thank you for stopping by today - love to read your comments!