Wednesday, January 18, 2017

New Jury Photos

 Woo HOO! my new Jury photos came today, I'm soo excited and I think they turned out terrific!   So you know what I'll be doing this week.... working on shows for the summer.  I'm still going to stick to 10-15 range, but I think these photos really show how I've grown the last few years.  So fingers crossed they make an impression on the judges !   Most of these pieces are available at Five Monkeys Inc here in Des Moines, A few are on the gallery website even! I'll have them back to the store by Friday.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

taxes, back ups and other boring business stuff....

I saw this back in August at a antique store and I still dream about it... over 7 ft of dreamy turn of the century storage... drooooollllll 
I can't say this week in the Jewelry biz is all that fun.  First off, in my "day" job I'm in training this week... training always seems to kill my desire to make stuff.  Since it's January I feel like it's OK to to take the week off, I'm hoping to get crackin' on a few projects this weekend.  I got a new tool (toy?) and I want to try it out and I've getting a craving to work chainmaile... I tend to ignore chainmaile and then every couple of months I just have to make it.  Or maybe I'll just keep reading books... I have a huge stack of paperbacks that I didn't have time to read over the summer.  The lovely thing about January is it's OK if I take a week off, it doesn't hurt anything.  I was amazing productive last week, so it all sort of balances out during the winter months.  

January is also the time of sales tax payments, end of year inventories, and making sure all my computer stuff is properly backed up.  I clean out my photo files and start up new ones for the year as well. job.  I like to sort my jewelry pics into some sort of order before I archive them.. that's actually tonight's job.

What sort of *fun*, once a year chores do you have?

Monday, January 9, 2017

Des Moines is KEWL!

I'm just cleaning up my file of photos from 2016 and ran across these --- believe it or not, this is wall art in downtown Des Moines, IA.

The 2 story, entire side of the building mural is fantastic, and this is just 2 little pieces of it.    Here's an article that tells some about this specific piece and several others in downtown Des Moines.  The article is a couple of years old, so I bet there is even more if you look.

Des Moines is a great city, you just have to look alittle harder for all the good stuff, and it's worth the effort!

Friday, January 6, 2017

So what does Kat do all Winter, since she doesn't have shows?

I found these vintage painted Cabs in Colorado on my family vacation last summer.. I immediately started working on a project using them and then... lost my artistic vision... 
Well I work a full time day job, so that of course.

Second, I clean my house.  OK, I clean slightly better than I do in the summer, because I have actual chunks of time, instead of 5 seconds here and there.  But that's not what I really want to do or talk about.  Ever.

So Winter is time to recharge batteries, acquire new skills, brush up old ones, work on new designs, investigate art shows and new gallery opportunities, source materials, reorganize one's studio or just simply put away things you didn't have time to put away since July, and maybe, just maybe, finish a couple of  UFO's.  (Unfinished Objects d'art)

Every artist has them... you start something, all enthusiastically, and somewhere you loose your creative energy, or you don't have exactly what you need, or just just don't have time to do it justice.   Or maybe it doesn't work right, and you just can't figure out what is next.

The plan is to put the Cab in this vintage locket that looks like a pocket watch.  The left shows the raw brass, and the right shows it after I've added some patina.
Somewhere on my back table  lies this project... I started to clean up and sort and put away stuff from a whole summer's worth of work, but I haven't run across this one yet, to make a "mock" pocket watch.  I have about 1 foot square of my back table that I haven't touched in months... I'm hoping to get to it this weekend.  It's about the last place this project could be.. but in some ways I'm not sure I want to find it.. I still am not sure how to finish it up.  Still, the cab calls to me, and I wish to do it justice.   I have a couple of other things that I just can't quite give up on, even though one of them I started over 2 years ago.  It periodically rises to the top of the pile, to be discarded once again as I just can't move forward on it.

Other things to think about this month: taxes, end of year paperwork, and getting new jury photos done.  I'm hoping to have them in the next 2 weeks and then it's going to be applying to art shows.  Jerry and I will be doing a reduced schedule again this year since last year it worked out so well.  I suspect actually this is the "new" normal.  ( isn't that just a terrible phrase? )   Doing 20 + shows a year is just frankly exhausting! Last year we did 12, and this year I'm thinking 10 at minimum, but no more than 15.  12 seems like a lovely number frankly.


Sunday, January 1, 2017

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Merry Christmas to all!

I hope everyone has a great holiday season.  Remember to practice kindness, not  because it's Christmas--  practice it everyday.  We all need all the kindness we can get !

Monday, December 19, 2016

typewriter bracelet - probably my last commission for the year!

This is a typewriter from 1950, pre - destruction.
Close up of the margin bar.... 
Finish bracelet, once cleaned, cut, filed, shaped, and sealed.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Battlestar Galactica and Making Jewelry

Costume jewelry necklace missing it's centerpiece cab... so I added a vintage watch face and crystal  instead..  I adore  redos! 
I came to watching Battlestar pretty late in the game... I remember exactly when, we were at a gaming convention in Council Buffs and I wasn't feeling very good or I was over peopled or something.  Anyway, I decided to stay that Sat in the hotel room and Jerry went out and gamed.  I remember we had a great suit with 2 tv's ( This would of been 2006 ).  So I got Chinese and looked around the cable and lounged on the bed and started watching Battlestar.  I'll heard about it, I'd probably caught an episode or part of one.  I've always been a scfi qeek but somehow I'd missed the first 2 seasons...

They had this great recap show prior to the season 3 opener, which was damn helpful.

But the first real episode I watched was Occupation.

*****Spoiler Alert *****

Kara thrace calmly eating steak after killing her Cylon captor.  Wow.  Just wow.  

***** End Spoiler *****

So here I am, rewatching BG , and it's just as good as I remembered
My only complaint ( ok this is tongue in cheek) -- not enough jewelry in it, and most of it is booooring.

But that's ok, as I rewatch the whole show, I'm making jewelry... and wrapping Christmas presents and sometimes just watching a great show.

If you haven't ever watched it, I strongly recommend it.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Time Lady and early Christmas Presents

I'm wrapping presents, making jewelry and posting etsy listings this fine Tuesday, while watching my early Christmas present to myself: the Blue Ray of "Battlestar Galactica Blood & Chrome".

I'm about 30 minutes in and it's really good, and damn I wish it became the spin-off it was intended to be.

Battlestar Galactica is hands down, one of the best SCFI tv shows ever... up there with Babylon 5, Firefly and Doctor Who (IMO)

I've watched the show in it's entirety - but this came out during the years of no Cable  so I missed it.  I didn't even know it existed actually.  So the best kind of Christmas -- a true surprise and pleasure!

My hope is this necklace, "time Lady" is the same sort of surprise and pleasure.  I worked very hard to make the vintage ceramic clock face so it sprins like a game show wheel.

Just putting that bit of fun in fashion that we all love so well.  If you are interested in this piece it's available at Five Monkeys Inc Gallery.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

My shows are done, but you can still buy my jewelry and here is how....

Made from the little lights from a speedometer.  I added the sparkies!
Just a quick hey and Hi !

 The holiday season is upon us, and I'm thinking more about what shortbread recipe will I try this year for Christmas than making jewelry.

Not that I can actually turn off that part of my brain off very long.  I even have a few commissions on my desk right now, and I've actually been sketching some design ideas.  Still  I am glad that show deadline pressure is off me.

But the good news is you can still buy my jewelry and right now is the perfect time -- my jewelry makes excellent gifts!

The easiest way would be online... you can see a good portion of my current Mechanical Romance line on the very easy to use Five Monkey Inc online Gallery .  If you are in the Des Moines Area, stop by the shop, as I have several other pieces on display that's not on the website, including the fab speedometer earrings shown above.  Actually the bulk of my Mechanical Romance line is at the gallery through December, so seriously go check it out.  The gallery represents only Iowa Artists, up to 60 at a time, so if you can't find that special present with my jewelry, you can find something else at the gallery to suit anyone!

You can also visit my Etsy store here  which has over 100 pieces of jewelry from all of my lines, including my chainmail.   I'll be adding new pieces everyday (OK that's my hope )

I still have a few commission slots open before Christmas actually arrives, so if you have something old from a loved one and want to have a new piece of jewelry, talk to me.  I've made jewelry for folks using all kinds of things like beloved scrabble tiles, watches and bicycle parts.  That way you have a keepsake from someone you love, but in a usable piece of jewelry.  Or if you just want something different and unique than what you can buy at icky large retailers, talk to me.  I thrive on the different!

Have you seen something on my blog or facebook and you loved it? Well ask... I might still have it, or I can probably create something from scratch that will capture what you loved about the original piece, but customized for you.

So The artist is still in the house guys, just ask.  It never hurts to ask.