Friday, June 29, 2007

Frustrated

Many years ago I was a web graphics designer. I had a website where I offered both free graphics and custom made things. I loved it. Until the frustrations began to out weigh the fun.

Anyone who is a little web saavy knows that online images have a URL and can be linked to from outside websites. If you do this without the owner's permission it's called stealing bandwidth, and it can cost the owner money if it's severe enough. This happened everyday to me, back then, and I spent more time tracking down thieves than making graphics. Eventually I closed up shop because of it. It's no fun to spend hours or days creating something beautiful and then have someone steal it and not give credit to the creator.

Ironically enough the same thing has happened to one of my clay creations. I wonder if it's karma biting me in the ass? Some months ago I found myself in the middle of a copying/ethical situation where I was the 'bad guy'. My error was made in complete ignorance. It was an honest mistake. If I had been part of the "in crowd"..or maybe the more financially capable crowd...it would have never happened. But I am not one of the fortunate clayers who are able to take classes and attend conferences. I did not know 'the rules'.

I'm hoping the writer of this blog article is making an honest mistake also. I am trying to extend the same kindness that was given to me when I screwed up. Yesterday I left the guy a comment informing him that I was the creator of the pink and black bracelet, and would appreciate a link back and proper credit for creating it. He is also stealing bandwidth from Flickr where my picture is stored. So far he has taken the time to delete my comment but not correct his error. This is making me think it was not an 'honest mistake'.

I also saw a lady commented asking him if he'd be interested in making beads for her. Is this because she thinks MY bracelet is his creation? I wonder.
He also linked to two videos. But he did not clearly state WHO made them. A ton of time goes into making one of those! Those people deserve an appreciative knod.

Anyway...it's just frustrating. A day has passed since I sent a message and so far there is no sign of 'doing the right thing'. *big sigh* I do not want to delete the picture from my flickr album. It is my most popular picture. Quite a few people have marked it as a flickr favorite and left such wonderful comments. If I delete the picture, just to take it off this guy's blog then I lose the flickr history associated with it. But it may be my only option. Honest mistakes are fine. Just being a jerk is not.

What would you do? Do I just turn the other cheek and ignore it? Or do I create a new watermarked picture, upload it, and delete the original? Wait? I'd be interested to know what you think.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Faux stone experiments

I recently snagged a new book (Making Polymer Clay Beads by Carol Blackburn) that has a project for making faux marble. It's certainly not the first time I've seen this technique....but it's the first time I've tried it.

I seem to be incapable of following the color recommendations for a tutorial. ANY tutorial. It's like a mental block. HA! The book called for white, translucent, and black. But I've been experimenting with other colors. My very first experiment beads turned out so cool. Unfortunately, I can't get a good picture of them. They are these earthy green, copper-ish jasper like beads. Hopefully I'll get a picture to share soon.

For now, I want to show you the others! I used gold mica powders for these.
Faux stone experiments
My very first reaction to them...after they were freshly sanded: "Hey honey! Want to see what happens when a can of cream corn and a block of marble have a baby??" LOL! Aaron and I refer to them as 'the cream corn beads'. But after I finished all the different grits of sanding and buffing...I love them. In real life, the mica powders are gorgeous. The layers seem to move in the sunlight....they are gorgeous.

These little guys are cute.
Faux stone experiments
They did not turn out as vivid as I had hoped...but I still like them. A good jewelry designer could pair them with other beads that make them pop, I think. I have more that are waiting for buffing.

And these poor little fuglies...
Faux stone experiments
Did NOT turn out like I had hoped. I have too many of these little guys. LOL! I'm sure in the right piece of jewelry they would be adorable. But I just don't have the imagination to make that happen.

I have many more colors of mica powders to experiment with! I'm sure you'll see more of these in the future. :)
Btw...click on any picture to visit my flickr album and see more. If you want to. :)

Monday, June 11, 2007

Leaf cane

Saturday I got the privledge to teach a cane lesson at our guild meeting. I get all nervous and fumble around with the lesson. I mumble to myself and change my mind half way thru the lesson. I'm a real pro! HA! Not. I'm lucky to have kind guild members who don't seem to mind too much. :) Anyway...we had a great time.

I was worried about the reducing process. To me, reducing is the hardest part. You can really screw things up with bad reducing. LOL! Sometimes it takes lots of practice to get the hang of reducing without lots of distortion. But apparently, our guild is full of natural born reducers! :) We had 6 out of 6 perfectly reduced canes. It was very cool. Here's mine.
Leaf cane from guild meeting

I hope everyone shares their own cane pictures on our group flickr page. Penni Jo has already posted one. She took her leaf cane, added a Donna Kato style petal cane and made beautiful flowers!

What should I do with my caribbean vaca leaves? (That's what the colors make me think of. LOL!) Maybe a new set of summery jewelry for me? Maybe a caribbean color tree art picture?

Friday, June 08, 2007

Sloooow Etsy?

Is Etsy loading painfully slow for you? It's been getting slower and slower, for me, for days now. At first it was just the search feature but now it's the whole site. Slow slow slow!!!
The rest of the internet works fine for me. I just ran AdAware because I thought maybe spyware was bogging me down. But Etsy is still dragging. I can not get ANY pages to load.
Am I the only one? I wanted to just surf and window shop today. WAH!!!!

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Silver Leaf Jewelry

If you are interested in using metal leaf with polymer clay, you might check out the new video tutorial I uploaded.

It demonstrates some very basic techniques that you can build on and turn into your own style! I hope you enjoy it. :)

Swap activities

I recently joined a clay bead swap group. I even signed up for two swaps. Which is sad because my own swap group hasn't swapped in over a year. *hangs head in shame*

One swap is for rainbow bead sets. I loooove rainbow themed anything. I really enjoyed making these.

The little white flower petals have irridescent white glitter on them. Which turned out looking more like texture than glitter. SO..I added pearl mica powder also. I still wasn't 100% happy with them, but they are still cute.
There's not much story behind the tire shaped beads. I wanted basic B&W spiral beads...but didn't want the typical round shape. So they got a light squish. :)

I also signed up for a MG pendant swap. I planned ahead and made an extra set of rainbow beads, just in case. But I didn't make extra pendants. Two more people have signed up since I made these.

I don't know if I should make a different style or keep going with more of these. These are not terribly time consuming...just wire consuming. :) But aren't they cool?! I'm going to make one for myself eventually.