Rearranging my website and new necklaces

New Necklace and Necklaces Page

During the last few weeks I've been busy rearranging my website and re-doing photographs. Even with all the photo editing I still managed to find some time to make a new necklace. I decided that I like the look of a pure white background without shadows. So I've been experimenting with figuring out the best and easiest way to photograph and remove shadows. 

Creating a DIY lighting area worked somewhat but I still had to manually remove some shadows. Photoshop is such an amazing program, using the dodge tool and masks I can easily remove shadows and then bring back any lost resolution with a mask. However it is still a lot of work. One thing is sure and that is I will never ever find myself at a loss for something to do as my daily "to do" list is usually way too long.

I've also added a 'Copper Necklaces' section to my Jewellery page. This is part of my reorganization effort. Please click here to view my new necklaces page.

Copper Necklaces Eye of Ra

New Necklace Eye of Ra

Mixed Media Art

Mixed Media Art and Collages

Mixed media art encompasses many arts and crafts.  This includes collage, encaustic, art journaling, altered objects, steampunk, artist trading cards and greeting cards.  Canvas art that combines paint, ink, and collage would be considered mixed media art.  And any type of “found” objects would also fall into the category of mixed media art.  Often I find myself collecting a bit too much junk so frequently I will force myself to de-clutter or I run out of living space.  Other media includes papers, newspaper, magazines, old music sheets, books, photos, glues, paints, gels, inks, crayons, and the list can go on and on.

When creating mixed media art, it is crucial to carefully choose the layers of media.  Allow enough drying time between the layers to ensure the final work will be structurally reliable to avoid breakage and bending.  A sturdy foundation is equally important.  Many great effects can be achieved by using “found objects” (aka junk) in conjunction with traditional art media.  There is no right way or wrong way, mixed media is self-expression using whatever media is at hand and going with the flow.  A variation of scrapbooking is also possible using mixed media to create unique photo albums.

The sky is the limit with mixed media art and you don’t need drawing skills or a fine arts degree. This self-expressive art form opens up a world of creativity for everyone that likes to create.  You will also find unlimited online resources from youtube videos to tutorials for every possible form of mixed media available.

Please click here to view my art and collages.

mixed media art

mixed-media

November Supermoon

supermoon

supermoon

Supermoon, November 13 and 14, 2016

The spectacular November supermoon was the closest full moon to Earth since 1948. Additionally, combined with the full moon phase, the moon was seen to be 30% brighter in the sky. According to NASA, we will have to wait until January of 2034 to see another supermoon. Along the coastline we can expect high tides called king tides for several days following the supermoon.

In Vancouver the moon was biggest and brightest on November 13, 2016. Unfortunately, as we expected, the weather did not cooperate and it was overcast and raining.  Finally on November 14th the rain stopped and the sky cleared for a short time.  I was lucky enough to glimpse a window of opportunity to photograph the supermoon in all its brilliant glory.  You will see from the photographs that the sky was still quite overcast but the clouds magically opened up right around the moon, providing an eerie quality to the scene.  Shortly after shooting several photographs, the supermoon once again disappeared behind the clouds, emerging only for a few minutes later in the evening.

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All photographs were shot on November 14, 2016 on my Nikon D3300 with a Nikkor zoom lens. Shutter speed was set to 1/30, aperture 3.5 and ISO was set to 800.  Photographs on the right were altered to look aged with wet plate and vintage filters in Photoshop CS6.

Landscape Photography

Solution to Coping with Stress

Landscape photography is my solution to coping with stress. My brain gets fatigued after working all day when I have to concentrate on repetitive tasks. Simply taking a break often does not help deal with stress. But walking in nature and photographing landscapes and other forms of nature are an excellent form of stress relief.

When we breathe fresh air at the beach, near a waterfall or after a rainfall, we breathe in negative ions. It is believed that once these negative ions reach the bloodstream they produce a biochemical reaction that increases serotonin levels. These negative ions counter the over-exposure of positive ions caused by computers, mobile phones, and other electronic devices that fill our homes and drain our energy. Through landscape photography, exposure to negative ions found near water and in forests helps to bring my body back into balance.

Exploring the Great Outdoors

Exploring the great outdoors is fantastic for warding off depression. When I was younger I spent most weekends camping, hiking, and rock climbing, always out in nature. Now with chronic back pain I switched gears. I pick up my camera and walk at the beach or in the forests and click away. Additionally every year I take a trip to the interior of BC and return with hundreds of landscape photographs.

The secret is to keep my eyes open and allow Mother Nature to provide me with opportunities to photograph her in all her glory.  Through photography I can share her beauty with others.  Continue reading

Landscape Photography

Landscape Photography

Work-in-Progress

copper wire goddess

copper wire spiral pendant

Recent work-in-progress still not  complete

So many ideas and too many copper wire projects that are still a 'work in progress'. I’m not sure I remember the last time I pondered the words “I’m bored”. This word is such an alien concept to me. Usually about 50 new items end up on my ‘to do’ list every day, beginning with sh*t I HAVE to do before I can start the list of things I WANT to do. So many new designs to try out, recipes, DIY projects, books to read, courses to take on Alison.com, photography ideas to try. The list is endless. Once in a while I fall into bed at around 7 pm just because I am exhausted but certainly not bored.

That’s how this week is going, one project that morphed into several other ideas. Before I even finished my copper wire spiral pendant found myself with a piece of wire that turned into a fairly large copper wire goddess pendant. The spiral pendant still needs to be oxidized with a liver of sulfur patina, tumbled and polished. Likely I’ll wait until I finish the goddess and oxidize them both at the same time. I picked up a necklace I started months ago, it didn’t hang the way I wanted with a necklace chain. Light bulb moment, maybe a neckwire will work better than the chain so off went the chain. Now I’m experimenting with side clasps to hold it all together.

The goddess needs some tweaking and finishing. Twice I’ve experimented with different beads between the hands and a bail above to hold the neckwire and neither effort was satisfactory to my standard. This evening I’m going to try again. All three items from above are on today’s ‘to do’ list. And there's a tray of other unfinished projects waiting .. they are further below on the list.

New Neckwire design

New copper neckwire design

Two days two new projects ... this new copper neckwire has a double spiral on one side and a longer wavy tail on the other side. The loop at the bottom of the wave is where you will attach the pendant. Or I can make this without the loop at bottom so you can wear it without attaching a pendant. I have a few other similar neckwires in mind that I'll play around with soon. Unfortunately tomorrow is Monday and I have to get back to my day job.

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Double Spiral Neckwire

 

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New Copper Spiral Pendant

spirals pendant

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spirals pendant

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copper wire spirals

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Post website launch - creating new copper wire jewellery

After many months of designing a website and then many more hours of tweaking and changing, it is time to get back to creating new copper wire jewellery. And it's not just about creating new pieces, I actually need to first think about finishing off some of the projects I started before I stopped to design a website.

Picking up an unfinished copper wire spiral pendant, one that I had, like so many others,  left to languish in a box of other unfinished pendants, I decided this would be the first to receive some attention. The wiring was not up to my standards and I didn't like the way it looked. So I snipped off all the wire and started over. Several hours later ... this is where I am at so far, the basic spiral design is complete.

This copper wire spiral pendant has a rectangle wire frame with an 'S' spiral of approximately 2" x 1". Two more "S" spirals are on either side of the first Spiral.  24 gauge copper wire is used to wire the pieces together. Now I have to decide what I is the next step, what do I do with it? Do I fume to create a teal blue pendant or oxidize with liver of sulfur for a rich dark effect? Liver of Sulfur is likely going to be my choice for oxidization but it still looks unfinished, something is missing. Maybe first some beads around the edge would improve the pendant.