Thursday, March 20, 2014

Adaptive reuse

The horses and the chickens keep wanting to eat and all, and so the plastic feed bags keep stacking up at the barn. Sure, i wish they still packaged feed in printed cotton bags that i could make into garments and quilts, but if plastic is all i'm going to get around here, why not make use of it? Time to convert them into totes!

I made a few of these at Christmastime, and this one went to the silent auction for the Bluemont dance program. (I already had four prints going to different auctions that week, it was time for something different!)

There are a zillion tutorials out there if you have a regular influx of bags; a lot of them use the bits trimmed from the bag to make handles, but i've found that cotton webbing is less hassle and gives a much nicer result (yeah, and also i got a whole reel of it at a thrift shop for about the cost of a single yard, so it's not adding much to my cost at the moment). I've been sewing these on the Rocketeer that i bought back in August, a machine i had intended to clean up and sell... but i keep going back and using it for projects, under the guise of "testing," so i'm starting to think it's probably here to stay.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

A print. And a correction.

So. Done with the commissioned print, it's been shipped off, the customer is delighted. However, in going over the info before posting the listing of the rest of the edition in the shop, i noted that Dewey here is not a Saint Bernard, but a Bernese Mountain Dog.

In my defense, they do kinda look alike. If you want to take Dewey home with you, you can find him here.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Today's lessons

1. Tepid renditions of "The Blues My Naughty Sweetie Gives to Me" give me the blues.

2. One really good waltz can make a two-hour drive suddenly seem worth it after all. (Yeah, that's two hours each way.)

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Keeping warm

Everything is chilly and soggy here, and i am waiting on a replacement part for the woodstove. Until that arrives, i can't do much to warm things up. And until it does, i'm thinking warm thoughts. With that in mind, here's you cute cat photo of the day:

(Cooper, the sort of speckled tabby at the top, prefers to use various siblings as pillows; here, he's with Lucy, the elderly Manx. No, i don't know how he manages to breathe.)

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Saints preserve us...

By way of an Etsy trade, i ended up with a commission to carve a block of a charming Saint Bernard named Dewey. It's been fun to do a pooch, after all the cats i've made prints of already... i just put the final touches on the block today, and will be starting proper proofs tomorrow. I'll be making a small edition of these - printed on extra-yummy Fabriano paper and hand-colored - so there will be a few available for the shop, too.

At least his coat is pretty high contrast (much easier than a tabby cat), but still lots of wispy hairs to follow!

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Good news/bad news...

Gave up on the acetate sheets, pilfered some acrylic from the spouse (and mooched his scribes, too), and had better success with the drypoint bit. This is a proof of the second design (i'll probably go back to the goose later, but this was more suited to the theme of the print exchange i signed up for, and - at the scale i had to work on for that - lino just wasn't cooperating).

The bad news? After i'd pulled the one decent proof pictured here, i came home from an errand to find the plate in pieces on the floor. Back to the drawing board for the print exchange...

Monday, September 2, 2013

Not quite ready for prime time...

I got a bit of a wild hair on Saturday to try my hand at drypoint - a printing technique that involves scribing into a plate, inking the plate, wiping most of the ink off, and pressing onto dampened paper to transfer the ink that remains in the scribed lines. It didn't go entirely as planned, of course, but the process and the troubleshooting has been kinda fun. It's still not there yet, but i think it's got promise. I was working from a photo of the neighbor's self-important goose. (Come to think of it, "self-important goose" is probably redundant...)