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Monday, December 28, 2009

INSPIRATION MAKES THE WORLD GO ROUND

I just wanted to make a quick little list of people who inspire me to create, to keep trying, to work my hardest, and to be my best!

First up we have Twinkie Chan!
(image source)

This woman inspired me to learn how to crochet! I had a couple months of being marooned in the desert at my mother's house after graduating college. I needed a distraction from the misery of doing absolutely nothing all day (it was too hot to cast resin cause of no a/c in 100º heat) so I decided to learn a new craft! I fell in love with crochet. Twinkie was a huge part of that. I saw the sculptural potential in crochet that knitting just didn't seem to possess. My mom is a knitter and I always wanted to learn a yarn craft to feel closer to her but I just never could wrap my head around it. Crochet was a different matter. I started to understand it almost instantly. I'm not a whiz or anything but i've started sculpting with crochet and it feels amazing. My portfolio for my MFA applications is going to be so soft and fuzzy! Thanks Twinkie!

Next we have Athina LaBelle of Eclectic Essentials Boutique!
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I just recently discovered Athina's work. She inspired me to start playing more with pastel colors in my resin! I always left the pastel colors in a corner, all neglected. I love pastel but I would forget about it in favor of brighter, more saturated colors because that's what I usually am drawn to. Seeing how this stay-at-home mom/jewelry designer used pastel colors to such wonderful ends I was really inspired to start playing with them myself. I've fallen so much in love with my pastel glitters! I've been mixing pastel with bold saturated colors and the result is really great. I'm loving it and loving her jewelry! She's also inspired me in part to start working with chunky curb chains and beading for the necklace part of my pendants. I'm so tired of slapping a pendant that I worked hard on onto a commercial ball chain with no personality. I want my chains to be just as DIY and fun as the jewelry they suspend.

And now for Amy Shrinkle!
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This girl makes some of the most awesome clothes! Not only that but she makes her clothes in more than just her own size. I love that! There are a number of other handmade clothing sellers who ONLY make clothes in their own size. I might not be a fatty anymore but I'm tall and have wide hips so a size 4-6 is out of the question for me! Even at my skinniest (I looked like an unhealthy twig!) I was a size 10-11 because of my height and bone structure. It feels really good to know that there are designers who understand that there are different types of girls out there and they ALL deserve to look fabulous! I can't wait for the launch of her Sugarpill cosmetics line. She always has amazing makeup on and I can't wait to see what the mind behind her makeup looks has been working on for 4 years! You know that after 4 years of conceptualizing and building that her makeup isn't going to be repackaged junk that you can get for $5 an ounce. It's going to be bold, original and fun. I'm so looking forward to it!

This next girl was a close friend some years ago. We lost touch a little bit but I still hold her in my heart. I'm talking about Roux!
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Hilary (aka Roux aka Tom Hoshino) was a really good friend back in the early 2000's. I even went to visit her in Cincinnati! I had a blast with her. There was a group of us on VLC (before it was mostly just furry porn). We all drew each other's characters constantly. We talked all the time. It was a good feeling to be part of that group. I miss all those people. I started moving away from the anthro scene but I still love the colorful characters and I don't think there's anything weird about anthro art. The porn can be a little weird but it's not like these people are having sex with REAL animals so whatever. I would never be an advocate of art censorship! Anyway, Hilary still really inspires me! Thanks to her I've been feeling the drawing itch a lot lately. I even drew today! It felt great and I would really like to get back into illustration for fun. I hated being an Illustration major in school but I love drawing. I think I just needed a drawing hiatus. NOT drawing did me a lot of favors but it's starting to feel wrong. I know I have a lot of talent in that area and it's silly to waste it. I know that there are people who would be happy to hear that I'm putting pencil to paper again. Maybe some day my illustrations will be popping up on DeviantArt again! I miss you Hilaroux. You were and still are a big influence on me!

And finally (for now) Sam MacKenzie!
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I LOVE this kid's work. Ha. I say "kid" but he's only a year younger than I am. This Australian is a favorite artist of mine. has been for years. I really look forward to his big sketch compilations. I think I enjoy artists' sketches and unfinished doodles more than their completed pieces. I feel like you learn more about their process and how their brains work from their doodles. I love his range! From pretty girls to silly doodles to big burly men with arms the size of trucks. His drawings can make me laugh and I do love to laugh. Looking at his work makes me BURN to draw things. Particularly cute girls in their underoos! He seems to really understand anatomy to the point of warping and bending it to his will. I like that. I also love boobies! Boobies make me happy. So thanks Sam! Thanks for boobies and inspiration galore!













That's it for now! There are a billion more people and things that inspire me every day. Too many to list really. But as of right this minute these are the people who are on my mind. I wanted to give them some credit for helping me keep the creative juices flowing! Without people to inspire us we would never do anything new or original. No artist can exist in a vacuum. We need other people around us doing things, making things, thinking, breathing. Otherwise we become stagnant and boring. With all the inspiration on the internet there's NO reason to be boring or uninspired. There are a million reasons to make something!

What inspires you internets? Colors? People? Books? Places? We all draw inspiration from somewhere. I would love to hear about yours!!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

COMPANIONS OF XANTH




There's this old game released in 1993 called Companions of Xanth. It's based off a Piers Anthony book called Demons Don't Dream. I never read the book but I LOVED the game. Of course in 1993 I was 8 so I couldn't really appreciate the puns and metaphors that make up the game. Almost every character in the game has a name that is a pun. A great deal of the dialog is puns. There's puzzles and riddles and all kinds of fun word play. I love word play!

Anyway I've been wanting to play this game again for several months but I couldn't for the life of me remember the name of the game, the characters, the release date. Nothing. I searched and searched through databases of video games released in the 1990s but I wasn't finding anything that sounded familiar besides stuff like Bomberman, Final Fantasy VII, and 007 Goldeneye. Not exactly what I was looking for! Finally I called my brother and asked him if he remembered. This hurt my pride a little because I was so determined to find it on my own. It was worth it though because he remembered immediately what I was talking about and gave me the title of the game!

With the title I was able to find an emulator for the game and I'm currently playing through right now! I remember a lot from when I was younger so that's helping solve the puzzles. It's not really a hard game to begin with. I'm playing it for the nostalgia mostly. I'm so glad that I found it and was able to download it for free. It's a lot of fun. Cute and silly with a lot of "Ha! See what they did there?!" with puns and metaphors.

One of the things that always amused me was the metaphors in the game. They're taken very literally. If you kick a bucket in the game you die. Also don't bite any dust! I don't remember if anyone offers to sell you a farm but I wouldn't buy that either! For someone who loves word play it's an excellent game. I think word play is the highest form of language. Knowing your language so well that you can alter it to hilarious ends is a fantastic ability. There are native English speakers in our country who can't enjoy puns because they just haven't learned enough grammar and vocabulary to understand them. That makes me really sad.

Word play is very close to my heart and so are video games! Any childhood favorites that you would love to get hold of? Maybe some vague memories of a game that influenced your life? I would love to hear about other's childhood game memories! Maybe we share some favorites!

And now back to the game!

Update 11:30PM 12/25/09: Just finished Companions of Xanth! It's not a very long game. Total play time was probably 4-6 hours over about 3 days. It's not a long game but it was still lots of fun. Just like I remember it! Only this time around I could fully appreciate the puns! It was worth looking up. I'm really glad I was able to find it again and play. I'm so grateful for the internet and all it has to offer, especially when it comes to old bootlegged games! Maybe I'll look up some more old games from my childhood.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

GUILTY PLEASURES

I have a number of guilty pleasures! They range from bad TV, internet celebrities I follow, eating too many cupcakes while my boyfriend isn't looking, to things I say, and clothing combinations.

Here is a list of some of my guilty pleasures!

☆ Charmed - I love that silly show! It's so campy, the acting (at least by the extras and guest stars is usually TERRIBLE! The plot is nonexistent and the dialog is ridiculous. But I love every minute of it. It's so bad it's good!

☆ Cupcakes - This might seem like it doesn't belong but the reason it's a guilty pleasure is I usually eat WAY too many. My boyfriend isn't a health nut or anything but he lost 100lbs this year so he's at least much more health conscious than he used to be. He eats a lot of veggies and lean meat and doesn't want me baking cupcakes all the time because they're too tempting for him to have in the house all the time. He also doesn't like it when I eat too many sweets. We butt heads about this all the time because if I could I would live off cupcakes and candy! Sometimes I sneak cupcakes when he's not around or already asleep. I feel bad about it sometimes but cupcakes are IMPORTANT damnit!

☆ Jeffree Star - I almost never agree with his attitude, especially when he's talking about how he's better than everyone else or telling other people to suck it, but I love him! I have no idea why. Maybe it's because he's a sparkling Glamazon, or because he's a pink haired freak much like me, only he's got a lot more people making him look good than I do. Maybe I just love pretty things. I've always had a weak spot for gay boys in makeup. Whatever the reason I can't seem to stop watching him! I don't like his music and I don't really even like HIM... But I love him. It's weird!

☆ Scene Hair - I LOVE SCENE HAIR! Oooh man it hurts to admit that but I do. I love big, choppy, brightly colored scene hair. The bigger the better. When I got my hair cut over the summer I wanted choppy layers that I could tease up if I wanted. I don't straighten my whole head, just the bangs, so it's not actually "scene hair" but it's close. I've had candy colors in my hair since I was 14 (10 years!) so that's nothing new. I just love the way scene hair looks. It's funky, it's versatile, it's cute! And my hair looks cute with a scene inspired cut!

☆ Hostess Orange Cupcakes - Even though I bake now and make my own awesome orange cupcakes I still love the orange Hostess cupcakes! They don't have any ingredients that you could actually pronounce... In fact I don't think they're actually food but they're so GOOD! I could eat 10 of them in one sitting. I used to buy them almost daily from the gas station on the walk to classes while I was in college. NOM NOM NOM!

☆ Christmas TV Specials - Smurfs Christmas special anyone? I LOVE Christmas specials. It's funny because I HATE Christmas music. I don't even really like Christmas besides getting gifts and seeing family... Hell I don't even really like the family part. My family is NUTS. But I love the TV specials. When I was younger I would be glued to the TV during Christmas break watching all the specials from Smurfs to Scooby-Doo to freaking PAC-MAN! All of it. I love it! I even love the stop motion animation Christmas specials like the Nutcracker. Although the beginning of the Nutcracker would always scare me. The part where little boys and girls who stay up too late get taken away. That would freak me right the fuck out! It still gives me the willies a bit.

☆ ANY Horror Movie - As long as it isn't a slasher flick (with a few exceptions) I will watch it and enjoy it. Sometimes the worse the horror movie the more I love it. The Silent Hill movie? LOVE IT. (Arguably the Silent Hill movie wasn't "bad". It was just going in the same direction of the bad dubbing that the games are victims of. The dialog was stilted and rigid just like in the games and I'd like to think it was done on purpose!) The second and third Resident Evil movies? Ooooh yeah I watched them. They were terrible but I still watched them more than once! I even BOUGHT the second movie! The first RE movie was pretty bad ass though. No complaints there. I'll watch just about ANYTHING with zombies. I love zombies. I'm scared to death of the actual zombie apocalypse. My boyfriend and I have had very serious discussions about what we will do in case of zombies. We've got a plan all laid out and it isn't your average "Go to the ammo shop and load up with guns then hole up in the country" kind of plan. We have PLAN plan! We're gonna SURVIVE that shit! Also we have sworn that if either of us is bit we will kill each other. If he gets bit by a zombie I have promised to pull the trigger and he'd do the same for me. That's real love!

☆ Plaid With Stripes?! - Well not necessarily those two together but I have been known to mix polka dots with stripes and other clashing patterns. I love to wear my floral print leggings with my pink boots that have a doodly map of France printed on them. I love to mix prints that wouldn't/shouldn't go together. I LOVE to clash. It's so much fun to break the rules of fashion and do your own thing. It's gotten to the point where if I'm not clashing in some way I feel uncomfortable! :3

☆ "Where did you get that?!" "Oh this? ...I made it" - I know it's not kosher to brag but when someone asks where I got something I made myself I can't help but blush and feel special when I tell them that I made it myself! The look of amazement on their faces is so priceless and it gives me such a boost! There was a particular time when a woman at my retail job was looking for a specific hat and I just couldn't find it for her. I was wearing a hat I had crocheted the night before. She asked casually "What about that hat (meaning mine), does it come in solid colors?" and I had to say "This hat? Oh... It didn't come from here. I made it." She looked astounded and it really made my day! Having something unique that you just can't buy in the store is priceless.

That's all I got for right now! How about you internets? Anyone want to share their guilty pleasures with me? Everyone has something they love but are just the littlest bit embarrassed by! Charmed is a big one for me. I have a lot of trouble declaring my love for that show because it's so BAD! I kept my Charmed watching secret and would get all sketchy when someone asked me what I was watching! Come on! Share with me!

Friday, December 18, 2009

ATTITUDE VS ACTION

Custom necklace for a 6 year old girl!


Cake or death?!

I've been having some panicky feelings lately about my little business. I'm trying really hard not to let the panic control me or my decisions. It can be SO hard though. Panicking comes pretty easily to me so it's been work to keep it from creeping in and ruining my positive outlook! My boyfriend tries to help but the way he goes about it can sometimes just upset me more. I was reading this article today and afterwards I said something like "I don't think I'll ever be making that kind of money". I didn't mean it to sound defeatist or like I was giving up but my boyfriend can be very black & white about things so he assumed I was just giving up. He then proceeded to give me a lecture about my attitude and how I was giving up before I even started. It really upset me, but when he gets like that there's NOTHING I can say to stop him. He believed that I was throwing in the towel just because I was having some worries and trying to be realistic. Sometimes I get so tired of him refusing to think about what might happen if things fail. And I don't just mean this little business. I mean anything. I NEED to have some sort of contingency plan in case things don't work out but no one seems to want to talk about that kind of stuff. As soon as I mention a worry I have about something not going the way I hope I feel like people give me the tired old "you just have to be positive" "you can't think that way" "you just have to keep working towards so-and-so".

I know that I need to stay positive and not give up. I'm going to keep plugging away and making new things and trying to reach out to people but I can't just pretend like I never get discouraged. I think what really matters is even when I'm not feeling awesome about life I'm still working at it. Isn't that what matters? A positive attitude will only get you as far as you're willing to work. I could be positive all day long about sitting on the couch and eating cookies, but I wouldn't get anywhere doing that. Why do I get attacked for not being the most upbeat person even though I'm still working, still trying, still wanting to make things move along? Attitude is important but ACTION is the real test, isn't it?

It seems, to me, like we place too much importance on attitude and not enough on action. Positive ACTION is what gets things done and causes change. WORKING for the better is so much more effective than being upbeat and hoping that your positive attitude will change the world. Shouldn't we all be allowed to have bad days as long as we don't let them interfere with our work ethic? Can't we be allowed to experience the full range of emotion without being labeled a sourpuss? Personally I would rather be able to truly appreciate the good days because I've been through the bad, experienced what unhappiness is so that I can fully understand what a gift it is to be happy. It becomes a problem when ALL you feel is bad, when nothing can make you smile and there's no cheering up for you. When things move from "I just feel off today" to being depressed most of the time then that's a deeper issue than attitude adjustment.

I'm not saying a positive attitude doesn't help facilitate getting things done, and everyone likes a positive person more than they like Eeyore. I just don't think it's realistic to expect someone to be positive every minute of every day. It puts a lot of strain on a person, having unrealistic expectations. It can be really hard when you're not feeling perky but you're afraid to let people down by showing it. I value transparency in a person. I wear my emotions on my sleeve and while that's not always a good thing for me socially it's not something I want to change about myself. Emotions are important, the bad just as much as the good. I like to feel anything. Feeling feels good, even if it feels bad.

What do you think internets? Anyone have a different opinion? How do you pull yourselves out of a funk? I try cupcakes and funny movies while snuggling with my boyfriend or my piggy dog. I would snuggle the kitten but he's usually too busy playing in the toilet or knocking shit over. :3

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

I'M NOT MAD I'M JUST DISAPPOINTED

Dog 'stache!

One of the nurses my mom works with made a custom order! I got to paint a horse for the first time and I'm actually pretty proud of the way it turned out. Especially considering that the space I had to work with is pretty small and the brush I had to use was NOT the one I would have preferred. I'll snap some pictures before I send it out tomorrow! It's going to be a Christmas present for a 6 year old. I hope she'll love it.

I've got a gallon resin coming in the mail on Thursday! That's pretty freaking sweet. Also my mother is sending me a whole box of yarn, my ski boots, and some cash to do my Christmas shopping with. I'm so grateful I have a family that helps and cares. This might seem a little weird but I really appreciate that my mother is perfectly OK with giving me money to buy her a Christmas present. I do hope that this is the last year I'll have to spend someone else's money for Christmas. It means a lot that she understand how tight money is, but that I still want to give presents. I just wish I had enough yarn to make everyone in my family hats or something. I need to buy something for my friend who's coming to visit right after Christmas! I want to get her something that really reminds me of her. I'll do some looking as soon as I have a little $$.

Jon has asked me not to bake anything for a bit. He doesn't like having tempting yummies around the house all the time and I understand why. He lost 100lbs in a year and he doesn't want the temptation of cupcakes and brownies all the time. So I'm gonna cool it with the sweets. I should make some bread or something instead! I'll go back to baking sweets when my friend is here and we can pig out on cupcakes!

A pretty serious bitchfest follows so I want to keep that a little more optional...

Saturday, December 12, 2009

NEW LISTINGS





I just put up a bunch of new stuff in my Etsy shop! Go check it out, tell me what you think maybe? Epoxyuponyou.Etsy.com

Friday, December 11, 2009

THE STORY SO FAR


Things have been going pretty well in my new life for this first week. I've been making things every day, feeling very productive. Today was about taking pictures and editing them. I'm gonna do some crocheting after this post too. I even ordered an entire gallon of resin! That should keep me busy for a little while.

I sold another necklace today and that made me feel really good. Sure, my Etsy sales are only up to 5 but that's better than 0 by at least 5 :D Yeah. Five sales without any kind of promoting or community involvement isn't so terrible. The people who do make it big with little to no self promotion are rare animals. I shouldn't feel bad for not being one. In a super saturated market like Etsy it's nearly impossible to be noticed without DOING something to get noticed. So I'm gonna do lots of stuff. Once I have 100 items in my shop I'm gonna start sending out emails to blogs to see if they want to feature me. I've also been playing around with the idea of emailing some semi-celebrity types I admire (Audrey Kitching, Raquel Reed, Twinkiechan, etc...) to see if they might want a free necklace/ring/hairclip whatever. That's probably a stretch. I'm sure those kinds of girls have people sending them all kinds of shit all the time but who knows. It might be worth a try? The worst they can do is say no and tell me to get lost I suppose. Being told no, being rejected, still seems pretty scary. I just have to remember that so many successful people had to hear no a billion times before they heard yes. But that one yes is so much more important that all those no's. That needs to be my mantra or something!

So here's what I've been working on so far:
★ Resin, resin, resin!
★ Cute diagonal color block cowl
★ Taking pictures/editing pictures
★ CUPCAKES!!! (I made awesome orange cupcakes today!!
★ Pan frying different things. First was chicken, I tried pan fried shrimp. Both were AMAZING! Thanks Alton Brown for teaching me how to pan fry!
★ Keeping the house clean so that Jon comes home to a comfortable space that he can relax in after work/class. If any hardcore feminists are reading this I hope you understand that I don't do housework to please my man. I do it because my partner has a lot more on his plate than I do and it makes me feel good to help him relax. I never was very domestic but that's only because I had no idea how good it could feel to make another person happy when they're so busy and stressed out. /digression
★ Watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer because it's easy to work while watching something I've seen a billion times and it's like comfort food for me. ❤
★ WORRYING!! That's last on the list because I've been TRYING to do it the least. I still worry though. I worry about my boyfriend, I worry about taking this big chance by cutting my hours at work WAAAAY back and putting all my effort/time/money into this fledgeling business that could very well explode in my face. I'm not letting the fear of failure keep me from trying though. Man what happened to me? I never used to be this positive and upbeat! Let's hope it's a good thing and not a sign of a brain tumor or something ☠

Monday, December 7, 2009

NEW BEGINNINGS




Some things are about to change! I'm going to be telling my job that I'm only available to work Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday mornings. They can pick two of those days a week, or one, or none. This is so that I can devote the majority of my time to crafting! I'm not going to sit on my butt and hope that someone "discovers" me. I'm going to make things happen. It was very immature of me to hope that success would just happen to me. Sure, some people are very lucky and succeed instantly but most of us have to work our asses off so that's what I'm going to do! It's time to get involved!

I want crafting to be my business and not just a hobby type thing. I want my life to be about glitter, resin, yarn, crochet hooks, baking, etc.... Making money for a big company that doesn't appreciate my efforts or skills isn't what I went to art school for. I wanted to have the skills to make a modest living off what I love. What I love is making things.

I'm really looking forward to being a business woman, to getting my name and my work out there. I'm setting some goals for myself and I'm going to meet them.

For starters:
1) 100 individual pieces in my inventory
2) After 100 pieces it's time to send out emails to craft/fashion/whatever blogs that I enjoy asking if they would be interested in featuring my work
3) Keeping track of inventory, costs, customers
4) Applying to every craft fair I can find that I feel my work would fit into (probably not the "high class" type craft fairs that only stuffy rich people go to. I don't think they would be interested in glittery jewelry or colorful/cute hats)
5) Get active in the selling community! It's time to let Etsy know who I am and what I'm all about.
6) Eventually (and this will probably take some serious time), once I have a following, open a shop on my own where no percentage of my sales is taken out and there's no cost to list new items. (That's a major long term goal)

This is all going to take some time and some serious effort but after working at a job that I HATE I know it will be worth it. I want to answer to no one but myself. I want my time to be my own and I want a life I can be proud of. Making this work will also mean relocating will be much easier. If I have a successful internet business I can move wherever I want as long as my resin and my yarn go with me. I have a few concerns about going back to school for my MFA in a couple years AND trying to keep an internet business going (hopefully thriving by 2011) while doing masters work but I'll figure that out when I get there.

I got some new molds in the mail today! Three new heart molds because the last set all broke, a tie mold and a mustache mold. I'm excited to get started with them. Unfortunately there's not much I can do today because I have to work in a few hours and pouring resin can be an all day thing, even if most of the time is spent waiting for the resin to set up enough to embed. Tomorrow is a different story though! I'm gonna get busy and stay that way.

One last thing before I play a little World of Warcraft and then put on some eyeliner before work: I'm not sure Epoxy Upon You is the right name for me anymore? When the name was chosen I was ONLY making resin things, but now I'm branching out into crochet. I want a name that won't pigeonhole me. I need a name that will give me the freedom to branch out in the future and won't limit me to one medium. I do like Epoxy Upon You though. I still think it's funny. Who knows. I'll keep thinking about it and see what happens!

Monday, November 30, 2009

THIS IS WHY I HATE MYSPACE

Because of people like this:

Hello,how are you doing ? well am a new member on myspace. just looking 4 a woman of my life...
i was browsing through profiles now and i got your profile.I found your profile page very interesting,you pictures look cool.Indeed,I can tell You are so beautiful!!Anyway,i wouldnt mind talking to you so i can get to know you real well and may be know what you want as well...You can send me a message on here ,i will be pleased to see any message from you.

Regards!


And this:

u r realy my wife and realy realy my wife and i want u . plz plz plz its reqeust plz marry with me ,

I was going to reply to these people but I'm just gonna let it be. I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings because I'm so squishy-hearted... I also don't want to open the lines of communication with these people. There's no point wasting my time or hurting their feelings. Nobody grows as a person from something like that. This is why I hate Myspace and usually avoid it. I hop on there once every couple of weeks to say no to 99% of the people who friend request me and to see if anyone I know is doing anything interesting. Social networking isn't really for people who hate to be social I guess XD

There are some people that it's really important for me to keep up with, even if "keeping up with" is just saying hi every once in a while and letting them know that I think about them a lot. I hope my friends know that just because I'm not a fan of emailing or talking on the phone that I DO thing about them almost every day and I love them the mostest. <3 <3 <3

Saturday, November 21, 2009

LAME

Gotta finish this hat! It needs a second ear flap and maybe a brim?


My cute little babies!



Some stuff I've been working on. Cupcakes, mini pies, afghan, hats... Also gratuitous cute animals picture!

I know I've been really slacking... I've let everything slide, from my resin pieces to work for my portfolio so I can apply to grad schools. I've been wallowing in this unhappy mire. It's not OK. Success doesn't come because you were sitting on your ass and it's time I realize that and get my act together. It's hard, I know, but sometimes you have to do the hard thing. The problem for me here is this: Just because I know how to fix the situation doesn't mean I'm motivated to do it. There is a possibility that I'll continue to sit on my ass and do nothing but make hats and work on this granny square afghan. While I'm still being productive it's not in the areas I should be. I need to be working on resin, I need to be coming up with new designs for jewelry. I need to work on pieces that I can actually be proud of and call art so that grad schools will want me. I want to be able to make a living from crafting and arting, not folding clothes and answering questions about return policies or if we have a public restroom (we don't). I want to be recognized for my hard work and talent, not my ability to sell gift cards. I want my life to matter. Right now I feel like it really doesn't. That sounds really angsty but it's true. I feel like I have no purpose, no meaning right now and it really depresses me.

I don't want much from life. I want to make a living off creativity. I want to be with Jon. I want to maybe squeeze out a couple kiddies and have a family. I don't need to be married, rich, kept... I just want to be loved and happy. So I guess it's time to try and make some of that happen for myself. The kids will have to wait until Jon and I have stable jobs and a steady income. I need to be out of school before I even think about having kids for real. It would be too much to have a new baby while still working on my MFA. Not to mention the fact that I usually work with some pretty toxic stuff (resin, oil paints, solvents) so that would be a bad thing to expose my pregnant self to.

What I'm saying is I want to work for myself. I want to be my own boss, make my own rules and be whoever I want to be without these 8 hour chunks of my life being taken over by The Man.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

DILEMMA

I had this friend in college who turned out to not really be my friend. There are a lot of reasons why I stopped talking to her but the biggest and most important one is that she was exceedingly manipulative. She used everyone she came into contact with in some way or another. She used me for money and validation mostly. I think she saw me as this weak girl with a low self image that she could take advantage of. She used me for money, she used me for pot, she used me to feel better about herself.

Once I finally stopped taking Prozac and woke up from my stupor I realized what was actually going on pretty quickly. Without the fog of an SSRI in my system I realized that she had been kinda awful throughout our entire time being friends. I wasn't about to subject myself to that crap anymore.

The final straw was an incident with a mutual friend that wasn't really important at all. It was the WAY my ex-friend handled the situation that made me want to walk away. I realized that she was the kind of person with no morals of her own. She would mold herself to suite the situation and the people in the room at the time. If the people in the room thought doing this one kind of thing was wrong or bad so did she, but as soon as those people left and she was with a different group her values changed completely. I am of the opinion that it's never OK to hit someone. Not ever. She is of the opinion that it would be too much trouble to get involved if a friend is being abused or if one friend hits another unprovoked because it's not "her business". That kind of bullshit doesn't sit right with me or Jon.

Speaking of Jon, he saw a lot of what happened between this friend and I. Let me say that Jon isn't the kind of person who sides with you just because you're his friend/girlfriend. If you're fucking up he's gonna let you know no matter who you are or what relationship you have with him. That's one of he reasons I like him so much. Honesty matters to me! In this case Jon was on my side because I was in the right. My friendship and loyalty were being abused by this girl and he didn't think that was OK. Not just because I'm his girlfriend but because you shouldn't treat people like I was being treated. Not ever. You just don't do it. So I cut all ties with this girl and never really looked back. It wasn't a malicious thing towards her, it was about saving myself from future grief. If I had stayed friends with this girl and continued to let her abuse our friendship that would have been MY fault for not getting out while I could. So I did.

Now she's sent me this message of Facebook demanding an apology and wanting to know why I "dumped her for my new boyfriend". It was a very telling message. This girl still thinks the world owes her. She thinks that I owe her my life for being friends with me. I don't think I owe her a thing, and if I ever did at any point that debt would have been paid after the hundreds and hundreds of dollars I spent keeping us stoned for the last 2 years. I'm not exaggerating either. Pot costs $$, she didn't have any to spend on pot. She sure as hell expected me to share mine with her though. She would go on and on about how she would repay me next time she bought weed but she never did. When she actually had pot it was the gross kind that gives you headaches. But I wasn't about to not share. I had weed and I didn't want to sit at home like a jerk and smoke it all alone. That's not fun!

It turns out I would rather not smoke at all than be taken advantage of like that. Anyway, I digress. The bottom line is I don't owe this girl an apology for finally sticking up for myself and realized I deserve more than to be used and abused in the guise of friendship. I'll never apologize for dropping her like an old bag of moldy tangerines.*

*I will make you cookies if you get that reference.

Friday, September 25, 2009

WORKING FOR THE MAN

I work at Urban Outfitters now! The store I'm working at isn't actually open yet so we've been putting everything together, getting ready for opening day on October 1st. We put anti-theft tags on ALL the merchandise except things under $20. We had over 1000 boxes of clothing and accessories that had to be tagged. That took two full days! I am completely guilty of making a catalog in my head of all the things I want to buy with my massive 40% employee discount! Of course my first couple of paychecks will probably all go to paying rent/bills. Whatever I can save I want to put into finishing my shoulder tattoo. I probably won't be able to buy any clothes for a while. Maybe when they have employee appreciation and I can buy sale stuff at discounted prices. Woo!

I've been working 7 or 8 hour days and it's been really hard. I'm not used to being on my feet all day and my fingers ache from shoving pins through seams to attach the anti-theft tags. Every. Single. Piece of clothing had to have a pin shoved through the thickest part of the seam (to prevent people from just ripping the tag out and stealing the merchandise). It was not fun. Today we finished all that! Now we have to fold/hang everything up and either put it out on the sales floor or back into the stock room. That should be a little easier but who knows. It'll probably be just as grueling and tedious as everything else we've done. At least I'm getting paid! Not nearly enough, but it's money I don't have right now so I'm OK.

I really hope my back/feet get stronger or more used to this crap because I've been coming home in pain and unable to do more than sit and stare off into space until it's bed time. I feel like I can't enjoy my time at home. It sucks. Doesn't help that I have to ride my bike 3 miles to and from work. Coming home isn't so bad because it's mostly down hill (except for one part that I have to walk the bike because I'm not strong enough to ride for half a mile up hill!). Going to work is a bitch and I want to die for most of the ride. I get to work all sweaty and red faced, having almost been run over by at least 10 cars. It's really not fun and it's not the way you want to start an 8 hour work day! Taking the train would take an extra hour so it's not even really worth it. BLEH! Please let me get better at this whole thing! I want to come home and be able to function. I want to be able to bike up that hill instead of walking. I want to get into work not feeling like I want to die. Please?

Saturday, September 19, 2009

MORE NEW JEWELRY!

I just updated my Etsy shop with two new pieces! I've got some more waiting in the wings but I don't want to upload all the goodness at once. Gotta spread out the sugar consumption, yanno? check out the listings for more info on each! Here & Here





And now for some news: I've been SICK for the last three days! It BLOWS. It all started innocently enough with feeling a little dizzy and being all full of sneezes. It progressed to a full blown can't-breathe-head-hurts-gonna-die-nose-dripping-constantly viral ATTACK on my body. SUCKS! I'm starting to find my way out of the woods though. The congestion has moved from my head to my chest and I know I'll be coughing up all kinds of gross stuff any day now. I have that tight feeling like my lungs are stuffed full of mucus and it's getting in the way of oxygen. Not fun. But at least my nose has stopped leaking constantly! THIS IS IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR YOU TO KNOW. Got it?

Thankfully I have an amazing boyfriend who made me tea and rubbed my very sore neck. He's been keeping me company while I've been couch bound. He hasn't even minded me whining and being all pathetic. It's so sweet and it's another of the many, many reasons I love him. Jon is a wonderful guy. So glad I have him! I would have been MISERABLE without him here. I was pretty unhappy and grouchy anyway but it would have been x1000 without my baby.

On a more random note our cat just turned one and he's been celebrating by being a jerk! He's always knocking shit over, chasing his tail as LOUDLY as possible and attacking the dog while she's sleeping. It's cute when he chases his tail but not at 4AM while crashing all around the house! He's also bee knocking things off the dresser/table/sink to bat them around on the floor. Always as loudly and early in the morning as possible. He's an evil little kitty. If he weren't so cute we would have turned him into kitty sausage by now!

Tomorrow we're going to our friend Jack's for football (BLEH! XP) and homemade chili (YUM)! Jack is a professional chef - and a good one - so it's sure to be some excellent chili. I'm going to be making cornbread to go with!

Speaking of baking I'm going to be making chocolate cookies with peanut butter and white chocolate chips. They're gonna be AWESOME! The cookie dough is chilling in the fridge. Once we're done dinner (which is salmon, fried shrimp, and mashed sweet potatoes, FUCK YEAH!!!) I'm gonna bake those bad boys up! :9 We always have such excellent food for two people who aren't trained in cooking or baking other than liking to eat! :9 :9 :9 :9

Friday, September 11, 2009

NEW JOB AND NEW JEWELRY!

I GOT A JOB Y'ALL! Urban Outfitters called today and offered me a job as a sales associate. So I'll be folding clothes, helping people find sizes and styles and probably doing cashier stuff too. WHATEVER I don't care what they have me doing as long as I get paid and don't have to change my hair! I get to dress like myself, my tattoos can be showing all over the place, and my piercings can stay in! I'm so thrilled. And relieved!

Now on to the jewelry stuff! I've been working on some newer ideas and they've been turning out great! Two of my pieces have already sold. How exciting!! I've been feeling pretty inspired lately. It's awesome. I'm going to be experimenting with these basic ideas and hopefully something magical will blossom from the seeds I've planted. I made these three pieces by painting the back of a resin layer with acrylic paint, then adding glitter, then another layer of resin to hold it all together. They turned out better than I had imagined and I'm so pleased with that! I hope I can keep pushing these designs to newer and better places. While Jon is out doing his stuff for grad school I'm gonna be here making things! :D




Thursday, September 3, 2009

JOB HUNT

I'm on the hunt for a job. I've applied a bunch of places so far but I haven't heard anything back yet. It blows. I've had a group interview at Bath & Body Works that went fine. It's part time and not a job I really want. Especially since I'll have to buy a pair of pants and a long sleeve shirt to cover my tattoos. I'll have to wear pants and a long sleeves EVER DAY I work there. I'll also have to take my two facial piercings out and wash/bleach out the purple in my hair. That was almost a deal breaker for me. I'm so desperate that I can't really turn anything down if they want me but it sucks so hard that I'll have to totally change my appearance just for this one place. A part time place. A place I really don't actually want to work for.

I went to a job fair for a new Urban Outfitters that's opening up in the same complex as the Bath & Body. They did a little impromptu group interview and I did really well out of the group. Jon went with me. We're both in need of jobs. It was really nice to have him there. I felt more confident. I think I like group interviews better because it's a lot easier to gauge how well you're doing, at least compared to the other people in the group. Jon and I were the best, but then I'm pretty biased. I would much rather work for Urban because they actually encourage their employees to be individuals. I wouldn't have to change myself to fit some stupid model.

I think it's really silly that a lot of places want all their employees to look exactly the same. Doesn't it get boring? I don't want to blend in, to disappear in a sea of workers who are wearing the exact same clothes, who have the exact same hair. I'll wear a uniform, I'll wear khaki pants and a white collared shirt, but let me keep my tattoos visible! Let me dye my hair fun colors, let me keep my piercings for fuck's sake! Let me be me! I don't want to be another corporate robot that can be replaced in an instant by someone else who looks exactly the same.

I didn't go to art school so I could blend in with the crowd! I want to stand out, I want to be unique. I want to be bold, loud, colorful, and creative! It feels so wrong to contemplate changing so much about me for a stupid part time job that I don't REALLY want. It sucks that I'll take the job and do the changing because I need a job so desperately.

Please call me back UO! Please, someone, give me a chance to prove that just because I have purple hair, tattoos, colorful clothes, and piercings doesn't mean I can't sell the shit out of your product. Give me a chance and don't ask me to look like everyone else. Please!

Friday, August 14, 2009

APARTMENT HUNT

So here's the story. Jon and I thought we had this nice two bedroom, two bathroom apartment all lined up. We thought everything was going smoothly and we would have this place by Monday. Well it's not happening. The landlord (who owns the building, he doesn't just manage it) raised the monthly rent by $50 AFTER we had filled out the application. Sketchy! If he's comfortable doing something like that what else is he capable of? We didn't want to find out.

So Jon, being the amazing man he is, found a different place in Dedham. It's a townhouse so that means two floors and a basement! There's a washer and dryer that would be all ours. The kitchen looks nice and very cookable. It looks new and clean. Spacious. I'm excited to have two floors! Jon is over there right now talking to the owner ironing things out. His credit should check out just fine. He's a good, responsible boy. I trust him to ask all the right questions and to let me know about anything important. Hopefully we can get all this sorted and have a place to live by next week. That's the most important thing. I'm going to be there on Wednesday the 20th so we NEED to have a place by then. Jon will make it happen.

I wish I could be there with him. He sounds so stressed and run down on the phone and it breaks my heart. He's doing all of this on his own. My only contribution has been the money from my grandparents. I just want to give him a hug. I think he really needs one right now. Sex would be nice too but we'll have to wait until Wed for that. Le sigh.

So that's what's up. We're working on it! I'm packing up my things (finally) and trying to mentally prepare for the grueling flight from Salt Lake City to Boston. At least it's over night so hopefully I can sleep a little? Maybe.

The dog and cat are all ready to go accept that Orson needs a certificate of health but that's easy peasy. Just plop him on the vet's table, a few pokes and prods and he'll be pronounced healthy as a bull moose. Only smaller. And sweeter. <3

Sunday, August 9, 2009

SLACKER

I haven't been doing much of anything out here. It's like being marooned on a deserted island. I see about as many people as you would see on a desolate little island in the middle of the pacific and there's about as much to do. So I sit, I read, I do stupid stuff online. I ran out of pink yarn so I can't finish the scarf I was working on. It's too hot to cast any resin. Thank goodness for the Harry Potter books or I'd be a pathetic blob of pudding sobbing on my bed.

It takes so much WORK not to go totally nuts. Being bored is getting on the express train to Crazy Town. Having nothing to keep you occupied while you worry about stuff you can't do anything about isn't healthy. I've had way too much time to think about everything and that leads to doubting myself and other people in my life. Most of me knows that it's temporary, it'll be over forever once I get to Boston. There's this little part of me that keeps saying that I'll never get there. This little, evil, nagging voice keeps telling me that things will be different between Jon and I. That I can't trust him. I keep having to fight down this feeling that he's sick of me. I don't know if it's because having a relationship over the phone is one of the hardest (and worst) things to do... Or maybe I'm sick of myself - and feeling like this - so I expect everyone else to hate my attitude too. I know I haven't been easy to listen to. I know it's hard to be Jon in this situation. He can't help me at all accept by finding us a house, and he's working on that.

I just can't shake these yucky feelings that everything is wrong. All I can do is hope that I'll feel better once I'm not in Moab Utah anymore.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

SOON

Jon is getting the rental trailer from U-Haul on the 2nd of August! That's so soon. This whole moving in together, starting a new life in a new place with all it's joys and uncertainties THING, really hit me the other day. It's really happening. I'm out of college and it's time to be part of the world. I don't really know what that means beyond getting a job and paying bills. I'm not thrilled about the paying bills thing but I'm looking forward to having a job. Of course I can only say that because I have next to no job experience. That means getting my first job is going to be hard. No one wants to hire someone without experience and it seems very unlikely that I'll be able to find an art type job right away. I'm hoping to work at the Apple Store or maybe get a job at a little boutique or something. If I work at a little boutique maybe they'd be interested in selling my work. I want to keep making crafty stuff, keep working with resin and fabric and yarn but it's not going to pay my bills right now. I'm just not making any sales. I think being in a big city where I can do some serious not-on-the-internet networking might help but I don't know. I need to remember to give my friends my business cards so that they can hand them out when they get compliments on their resin stuff. I've given resin necklaces to a lot of my friends or sold them on for cheap because I love them but I need to eat. They say they get lots of compliments but I keep forgetting to give them business cards. I know where they live though! I'll send everyone some cards as soon as I can remember to do it. Yeah.

My mother made the suggestion of race coaching at the nearest ski resort. She said there's one about an hour outside of Boston. That's a really awesome idea. I fo sho want to ski as much as I can but Jon and I aren't going to have a car. Maybe there's a shuttle or something that goes every weekend or even just once in a while? I don't even know the name of the resort. I should find this stuff out. I would love to coach little girls in ski racing. I loved it, I learned so much and I'm sure I have lots to teach. I also know that having a female coach was one of the best and most important parts of racing for me. I met strong, intelligent women who could ski the pants off most guys. I met women who could stand up to a WHOLE bunch of men and maintain their poise. I really learned from those women. They understood that girls ski a little differently because they went through it. They know that having hips, boobs, and a butt change your balance. I learned by watching them, emulating the way they moved their bodies when they bombed down the hill. I wanted to be fast, strong, and confident. I'm at least strong and confident when I'm on my skiis. I never got all that fast but mostly that was fear of getting hurt. I can go pretty damn fast though. :D

We'll see what the future has in store when we get there. It's not time yet, there's nothing I can do to get a job right now. I'll try and use this time to write a résumé if I can figure out how to actually do that. I'll try to add anything I can think of on there as "special skills" like that I can speak some Japanese and I know how to make molds and cold cast. I can crochet and sew and pour resin. I know how to weld with acetaline. Arch welding startles me cause the spark makes a loud noise and the welding mask doesn't help cause you can hardly see a thing unless there's a spark. It's no good. I'll take acetaline any day. What else do I know how to do? I can draw! And I know more than your average bear about web design, Photoshop, and Illustrator. I can pick up new computer skills pretty fucking fast. I type like a dynamo! Whatever that means. I think it means I type really fast and well. I know how to do some video editing. I know how to etch and I could figure out how to screen print quickly. I understand everything about it in theory I've just never applied that knowledge to the practice of silkscreening.

I want to take all these skills and apply them to my own creative business. I want to make stuff for people to wear and enjoy. I want to do this mostly so that I have the cutest stuff around but I would love to share so that other people can have cutesy things too. I might make some stuff some day that isn't all that cute. It might be scary or weird or ugly even. I just want to make cool stuff that I would want to wear or own for other people to wear or own. I don't think I would ever make something that I wouldn't wear proudly on my own self.

THIS ENTRY IS LONG AND RAMBLY WITH NO REAL PLOT OR DESIGN. YAY!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

CROCHET

I'm learning the ancient and awesome art of crochet! I've learned how to chain, how to single crochet, and double crochet. I learned how to start an amigurumi ball and if I just kept going with it I could probably finish and amigurumi ball. I understand the CONCEPT of decreasing but I haven't tried it myself yet. It's the neatest thing I've learned in a long time! I've been experimenting with making circles different ways and sizes with different stitches. I learned that by increasing the circle way more than you need to you end up with ruffles! That's really good to know. I bet I could make a circle with ruffly edges now.

I have this problem though. I want to do EVERYTHING. I want to be able to crochet any shape I want at will, I want to be able to make awesome resin jewelry, I want to design and sew clothes. I've always been the kind of person with a lot of interests and one medium has never been able to satisfy me fully. I always want to know more, do more. That all takes TIME though and I hate being a beginner! I get frustraited and have no patience for myself and the time it takes to actually learn something. The upside is that I know how to do a lot of basic stuff in a lot of different media. The drawback is I don't really know how to do much of the fancy stuff that takes years of practicing that one medium until you know EVERYTHING about it. Of course, if I keep up my dabbling eventually I'll have enough experience in all these skills to do the fancy stuff. But it'll take me twice the time it would take someone who was just focusing on that one craft. I'm ok with that though.

I think crocheting is a great thing for me to learn. My mother and her mother (my grandmother) are both master knitters. I tried learning to knit on several occasions but it never stuck. Maybe because knitting is too structured. I think crocheting will stick with me because it's more free flowing and intuative. Most of my understanding of craft is intuative so that works for me. Now I can cary on a yarn craft and not feel like an ass for not being a knitter. I just wish someone had taught me when I was little. Imagine the strange concotions I could whip up with that kind of experience! I'll get there though. I can just imagine four years from now I'll be able to crochet all kinds of things and I'll be amazed that I was ever an akward beginner! I hope XD

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A CERTAIN SIZE

I'm officially back to a size 13! That might sound big to some of you but keep in mind that I'm 5'11" and very broad in the hips. I have them baby birthing hips y'all. Mmmmm.

What was I saying? Oh right, size 13. Yeah. I had some problems with my weight, mostly due to being a depressed sack of shit. The depression was resolved and the weight started coming off. Yoga helped a lot. Since January I've lost probably 20 pounds. Over the course of my senior year I've lost something like 30 pounds (as long as I'm not all bloaty from monthly woman problems). I fit into size 13 pants again and I'm fucking thrilled! I went to Nordstrom today on the bus and damn did it feel good to buy pants there. So effing good. I got a little emotional. Losing weight is really, really nice. I'm really proud of myself for kicking the depression and getting off my ass.

The great part is that I never stopped eating candy or potato chips. I eat lots of junk food! I don't eat big portions though. And I usually have about two meals a day with some snacking in between. No dieting for me! All it took was being happy and doing yoga. I love yoga!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

FURTHER ADVENTURES




More stuff from Denver. We've been having some really interesting weather. There was a funnel cloud downtown today, plus a little hail and some rain. The dark clouds come on so quickly. I was inside for maybe 30 minutes and it got crazy dark and cloudy. When I went into the shop it was sunny and bright. Danielle called me and told me about the funnel cloud and that if it came anywhere near the apartment that I should head to the ground floor and hang out in the stairwell. Thankfully it didn't come close and I was spared any panicky moments. No grabbing the dog and running down the stairs or anything like that. I don't even know what I would have done with the cats. There's no way I could have left my piggy though. I love my cat Orson but he's so wriggly and he hates being held for too long. Oh well, nothing happened to us so everything is good!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

INCLIMATE WEATHER

The weather in Denver has been pretty crazy. Sun, hail, rain, tornado warnings, more rain, then some more sun. It's fun! Sarasota is just sun or rain. Sometimes the rain comes in the form of hurricanes but it's still just rain. I like the unpredictability!

Friday, June 12, 2009

NEW SHIRT!


Danielle gave me this new shirt as a late birthday/Christmas present! It has a CUPCAKE! I love cupcakes! Threadless shirts are the freaking best!

She had three shirts for me to choose from and of course I went for the cake. That was pretty obvious no?

I'm staying with Danielle and her boyfriend Mike at their place in Denver for the week. No more Sarasota for me. I had to leave my Honeybear behind. He's gonna stay in SRQ for the next two months doing stuff and saving up so that we can get our own place in Boston come August.

After this week I'm going back to Utah to hang with my mom and 18 year old brother until August. Hopefully I can get a job, or make enough resin stuff to get me through. I'm hoping to sell some stuff around Moab. It's a neat little hippie town so I'm sure there will be people to sell to. I'll hand out business cards and talk to the local consignment shops. There are lots of funky little shops with handmade stuff. There are plenty of little girls who love pink things too. Or maybe I'll get a job at the gas station. Whatever happens I just want to be able to save some money for the big move and to put down money for a new house/appartment.

Being in Denver is making me really excited to live in a big city! Boston is going to be a great adventure. Mostly I'll be glad to be reuninted with Jon. We could be in Alaska for all I care. I just want to see my baby again!

Friday, June 5, 2009

NEW STUFF!



I just added some new items in my Etsy Shop! OOOOH I hear thunder! And it sure got dark outside! It's a good thing I took pictures of my stuff earlier when the sun was out. I hope it's not raining like mad when it's time to walk to yoga! Not having a car can be such a pain.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

PROBLEMS SOLVED

HUZZAH! That's me shouting with glee. I was having this weird problem see... A number of my resin pieces were coming out soft. By soft I mean SQUISHY soft. Totally not like resin should be at all. Resin is supposed to cure as hard as any other hard plastic. There's not supposed to be any squish to properly measured and mixed resin. I was measuring my resin properly! I was mixing it for the full four minutes, pouring from the first cup to the second in between. I was doing everything right and still some pieces were coming out soft. It didn't make any sense and I was getting really frustrated! Eventually most of my mixing cups broke so I bought a new batch of mixing cups.

The new cups came and after looking at them for two seconds I realized that the measuring markers were different on these cups. The line marking 1oz was in a different spot (higher up on the cup) on these cups than my old ones. To be honest with you Dianne, I was surprised. I had no notion that the reason my resin was coming out squishy might be because the cups THEMSELVES were wrong! Seriously, who buys a measuring cup with the thought or care that the actual measurements might be wrong?! I'm still kind of astounded. With the wrong measurements how could I ever mix resin properly? And it's not like just one cup was off. All of my cups were wrong. The only reason I ever got resin that wasn't totally sticky is because sometimes I accidentally over poured the amount of part A and didn't compensate properly for part B. Good thing I made that "mistake" otherwise every piece I ever made would have been totally squishtastic!

There weren't just any measuring cups either. They're meant specifically for resin casting. Everyone who has ever worked with resin even once knows that the measurements have to be as close to 1:1 as humanly possible. Defective cups make it a lot harder! Those cups are gone now though, so no more concerns about that. A whole batch of cups that were pretty much useless. Wow. I'm glad they started to break!

The new pieces I cast using the new mixing cups aren't even 72 hours old and they're rock hard. I'm really pleased about that. It's also really good to know that I wasn't fucking up somehow. I was actually kind of embarrassed about the whole thing. I thought I was screwing up somehow, that people would think I was an amateur. I'm really glad to know that it wasn't me, that it was something totally beyond my control that I had no hand it whatsoever. Good things to know! Now I can get back to casting without worry...

At least until I have to pack everything up and go to Utah. I have no idea how I'm gonna cast stuff in 107º heat. Resin needs to be at about 75º to work and we don't actually have any a/c in the middle of the freaking DESERT. Yeah, my mother is insane. No, I'm not looking forward to sweating my tits off and being thirsty 24/7 but I go anyway. Anyone have a blindfold and a cigarette?

Friday, May 22, 2009

PLANS

Things are coming together finally. It looks like a sure thing that Jon and I are moving to Boston some time either during or before August. I would like to move at the beginning of August so that there's lots of time to get settled before his classes start. That doesn't mean we're actually going to do that though.

I'm leaving for Utah sometime in the second week of June. I'm gonna hang out there rent free for a couple months, hopefully get a job and save up. Maybe I can get a little job experience before Boston. I'm 24 and I've never had a job before. I guess in some ways that makes me very privileged but in a lot of ways it puts me at a huge disadvantage. Everywhere that's hiring wants experience and I have absolutely none. I'm sure that most of the jobs that want experience aren't really all that hard. I'm really very smart so I can't imagine that I would struggle at something like data entry, but they want experience anyway.

What I really want to do is make resin stuff and live off that, but my internet sales suck and I have no idea how to boost them. Don't get me wrong, I've sold lots of necklaces but it's all been through school. Friends and classmates were my biggest buyers. I got a lot of interest just wearing my stuff around campus. People would come up to me and ask questions, stuff like that. Now that I have business cards I can hand them out to people but school's over, so that's a bust. Anybody know a good way to self promote? I have this blog, I have Facebook and a link to my shop on there. Same with Myspace. I have a Flickr too, and DeviantArt. I never expected sales to just come rolling in with no effort on my part but I'm kinda shy on the internet because I tend to make an ass of myself.... Not really sure what to do.

I need to make some money and getting a real job seems like it's going to be more and more impossible. The job market doesn't seem to be improving. I'm just a little freaked out and worried about this is all. I'm worried that Jon and I are gonna move in together and I won't be able to find a job anywhere. I'm worried that Jon's gonna be spending all his time going to school and working and supporting me because I can't find any place willing to hire an artist with no job experience in any field. I know how to cast things, I know how to make up to a two part mold, and I know how to sew but not well enough to do it as a job. XP

Maybe everything will be fine....

Saturday, May 16, 2009

SCHOOL'S OUT FOREVER

YEAH! I made it to the end and graduated! I have a BFA now. It's pretty sweet.

My family was here for a week and that was pretty awesome. It was so great to see my mom and little brother especially. I'm closest to them in the family. We spent time at the beach, we went out to dinner, we cooked dinner at the house. Jon got to meet everyone and that was really awesome. They all seemed to really like him and he was charming and funny. It felt so good to have someone I'm proud to introduce to my family. I never have to make apologies for Jon. He's awesome.

It's been a full week since the graduation ceremony... I've been using my time wisely. Playing FFIX, then I'll move on to Wild Arms 3, FFX, FFXII, or Chrono Cross. I love RPGs. I love stories and puzzles and intrigue and misteries to solve and little widgets to find and sidequests. I just love it. I've got a bunch of DS games like the new Zelda and all the Phoenix Wright games currently out. I've got some of the old FF games on DS too. How exciting!

What I really need to do is start casting resin every day but I need to get more resin first. Maybe I can ask Jon to take me to Michael's this afternoon when he gets back from work. What I really want is a gallon kit so that I don't have to worry about this shit for a while but oh well. It'll have to wait. I'm really hoping that having more time to dedicate to my resin stuff it'll take off and start selling more, at least online. Most of my sales have been to friends and classmates, but school is over so that well has dried up. People go nuts over some of my necklaces and stuff... but none of them have an Etsy account. Some of them have never even heard of Etsy. I need to either find a bigger, even more popular place to sell my stuff or I need to find a way to advertise better. I've never been very good with the social networking stuff because I'm always afraid to a) seem like an asshole for plugging my own stuff b) make an idiot out of myself somehow. I guess it's time to get over that. I don't really know the best way to advertise on a forum or something like that though. People on the internet, and in general I suppose, don't like to share their "secrets" because they're afraid of being out sold or they're just an asshat. People in the States don't like to share their money making/customer grabbing ideas or strategies because we're all a bunch of jerks.

In the mean time I will be making more stuff. I want to do some pieces that are just stripes of glitter, maybe with some candy stripes too. I have ideas... But right now I'm gonna get back to FFIX. It might not be the best game ever but at least it's fun and a great way to lose track of time.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

ALMOST

Just one week left until school is over for good! I'm glad to finally be done with most of my work. I finished all my liberal arts work today and it's the best to be done. Now I just need to deal with installing my big lint piece for the senior show on May 1st. Also I have to write a page for Bradley but that'll take 30 minutes tops.

The only reason I'm feeling anxious is because I can't get into the space we're having our show and start working. I have to wait. I only have to wait until tomorrow afternoon but I had to wait all weekend is the point. It's kind of nice to be forced to slow down and relax because there's nothing to be done about it. I just need to keep making lint all week and steadily install my piece so that I'm ready to go by Friday for my final crit. At first my crit was going to be on Tuesday! Luckily it was moved back because some things got messed up and moved around. Yay for me!

I have this nagging feeling like I have something more to do, but I think that's because for the last month I've been crazy busy and my brain hasn't caught up with the notion that there ISN'T anything left to do. So catch up with reality brain! I need to get some sleep.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

SCHOOL IS A KILLER

AAAAAHHH!!! I have 3 weeks of college left and I'm excite but also freaking out because I have all this obnoxious work to do and only a little bit of it is actually FOR my major. All the other work is for stupid liberal arts classes where the teachers don't seem to understand that no one cares. Granted I would probably enjoy these two classes if they weren't at 8:30AM, but they ARE. So it doesn't really matter what they're about. I knew I wasn't going to learn a thing from them when I signed up, but they were the only classes that met the requirements and fit into my schedule. Ringling is retarded like that.

In a lot of ways I wish I had gone to a bigger school. Not a university, but a bigger school with more reverence for Fine Arts and their contribution to world culture. I wish I had gone to a school with enough enrolment to warrant a few different sections of each class. Most of the classes I'm taking are only one section, so that means you can either fit that one section into your schedule or you can't. If that one section doesn't work for you then you don't get to take that class. A lot of the interesting classes, like Dangerous Ideas and Ethics for Artists are held during my classes for my major. All in all Ringling College of Art and Design is never inflexible when it comes to scheduling. All classes (accept one or two of the freshmen level English classes) are 2 hours 45 minutes long, most of them are one section (I don't remember the last time there was more than one section to chose from), and most of the one section classes seem to only be held at 8:30 in the morning! I have no idea who decided this was a good idea, but I would like to personally punch them in the nose.

This Week in Resin:


In other news, I've been pouring more resin stuff! I've started on a whole bunch of littler hearts that will have stickers and insults embedded. I think the right price for them is $10-12, maybe $13-14 if they have a whole bunch of sweetness in them. I've been doing my Etsy research and I have to say I'm really disappointed in a lot of the other sellers of resin cuteness. They price their pieces WAY too high. They do this because epoxy and polyester resin are pretty mysterious and unknown. People just don't know that liquid plastic exists and they certainly don't know how much it actually costs. Let me demystify this for EVERYONE. 8 oz of resin at Michael's costs $11. That's it. I've found a gallon kit for epoxy resin for $50 online. There is NO REASON for a necklace that has maybe 60¢ worth of stickers, 50-60¢ worth of glitter and $1.30 worth of resin to cost $22 just because it's in a cute heart shape. That's ridiculous to me.

The only reason resin jewelry is expensive is because of the time that goes into making it. While creating each piece doesn't take THAT long, there's a lot of waiting that has to be done. Making a heart pendant that's just solid glitter takes at least a day and a half, maybe more. First the resin must be mixed then poured. You let that gel, and that can take all day or all night if you poured later in the day. Then you have add the eye-pin to the back of glitter resin and pour a layer of clear resin to hold the pin in place. That has to cure for several hours (depending on the temperature wherever you're pouring.) Once that's done you can pop the piece out of the mold, trim the excess off the edges and hang it from a chain. While you're doing all of this you can't really make more pieces because all your mold cavities are filled with half finished and curing pieces. That's the ONLY reason resin is expensive.

It upsets me a little to see all of these high priced resin pieces on Etsy and the Internet in general. I can really understand someone not wanting to pay $20 for a plastic pendant. I can even understand someone not wanting to spend $18 on my pieces. I started them all at $18 because I wanted to be competitive but still look serious. If i price everything at $12 I thought people might worry that there was something wrong with me or the pieces. If nothing else sells at that price I'll think seriously about bringing it down. I want to have jewelry in everyone's price range. I think anybody who likes what I'm doing is a potential customer and shouldn't I want to please them? Shouldn't I want them to feel like they're not throwing their money away?

The more I learn about resin casting the more I think most people's prices are pretty outrageous.

Anyway I'm going to be posting some more pictures to my DeviantART and I'm going to be posting a new listing to my Etsy Store sometime tonight (if I can get some homework done before it's time for yoga class that is!)

Wish me luck getting everything done!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

UP AND RUNNING


These last few weeks have been spent putting together my Etsy Shop. I've been uploading photos of the jewelry to DeviantART too! I'm really excited to get off the ground with all this stuff! Money is nice, but mostly I just want to know that people out there, somewhere, are wearing things I made. I squee every time one of my friends wears their necklace, or whenever someone stops me on campus to talk resin. It's really awesome. It gives people an opening to talk to me (apparently I'm a little intimidating... maybe because I'm the tallest woman in the world?) and it gives me something to talk about endlessly so there's no awkward pauses and all that stuff.

That's right, this creator of cutesy, glittery goodies is actually pretty shy and awkward in social situations. I've been doing a lot to get over my social fears but many of them are still lingering. Doing all this resin stuff has really opened me up though! I know that if I have to keep interacting with strangers on a customer/seller basis my social skills will improve! I'm already much more comfortable talking to Etsy people, and I've only done it a few times.

RANT TIME!

Another thing has been bothering me and that's how closed the internet art community is. No one wants to share their secrets, everyone is so worried about who's copying them. Everyone seems to think that they did it FIRST and anyone who does anything similar after them is therefore a copycat, or just an asshole. Sure, tracing someone's art and calling it your own isn't such a good idea, but does that mean nothing is learned from it? Why can't we learn from each other? Why can't we share our secrets with everyone in the hopes that new and better ways of crafting and creating will be invented? Nothing ever changed by hoarding knowledge!

I know a lot of this attitude comes from this: "I learned on my own so everyone else should have to learn on their own too! No one taught ME how to do this so why should I help anyone else out? What if they do it better and they steal ALL my customers/fans/friends/spaceships/etc...?"

We need to get over this kind of thinking! In Fine Arts one of the biggest topics is that nothing is new under the sun. The only way to be original is to do things from your perspective. No two people see things exactly the same, and sometimes you learn the most by taking an idea and changing it, making it better, expanding on it. It's about the evolution of ideas. How can ideas evolve if we don't talk about them? How will techniques improve if we don't discuss them? If no one knows how to do something then no one will be able to come up with new and innovative ideas.

I guess what I'm trying to encourage here is a more open market, a more open attitude, and more open communication between artisans and artists on the web. And not to sound preachy, or like I know everything, but the contemporary art world that artists like Tracey Emin, Mike Kelley, Annette Messager, David Altmejd (and other people you would see in prestigious galleries and curated museum shows) don't hoard ideas. They don't gaurd their art making processies like Cerberus guards the gates of Hell. They speak openly about how they work and think because that's what art IS! It's the process, it's the materials, it's the IDEA!

Also, those secrets you guard so jealously aren't really secrets. There are so many people in this world that eventually someone, or multiple someones, are going to invent the exact technique you invented without ever even knowing who you are or that you "thought of it first". It just doesn't work that way and it's silly to think that any idea is ever completely yours.

I am not advocating copying someone else's design verbatim. I'm not advocating tracing as anything but a learning tool. Creativity DOES exist, you can be creative and unique, but there are going to be people just as creative and unique as you. Just be yourself and you'll be golden. No one can ever be JUST like you. So don't be afraid to share! If someone rips you off, so what?! If someone does something similar to you, don't think that they're copying, be amazed at how intricate this world is and how we're all connected in some way. Be fascinated! Not angry or upset! Be happy!

Share! <3

Rant is over :D