Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Whimsy Wednesday! Whimsical Bits!

Hello Everyone!
Welcome to Whimsy Wednesday!
I hope your week has been fantastic so far!
This post is all about the little bits of whimsy I've found along the way of to and fro of life!
This first photo of two beads found from the same source and is a little bit of education for some.  
The bead on the right is how a finished bead is expected to look. It is not the highest quality plastic...given that the bead holes are not level, even or completely finished. Yet those things can be accommodated by bead caps and so forth.
Consider the bead on the left. See that little cylinder sticking out from the side of it? That is plastic left over from injecting plastic into the bead mold (thus creating the bead).  The cylinder is usually cut off. The site of its attachment is then usually sanded, heated or in some other way finished so as to erase any evidence of manufacture.
If you see a bead such as the one on the left, I suggest you do one of two things with it...
1. Avoid it like the plague and check the quality of the other beads from that same source carefully before purchase/adopting them.
2. Embrace its quirks and incorporate them into your design (knowing this is a lower-quality bead).
So, where is the whimsy in the above, you ask? The idea of incorporating the significant imperfection of the bead into a design, of course!!

This second photo is the last little bit of whimsy for today!  See those little tool charms?  
Aren't they fun?  
These were found at an antique store and I adore them!  I'm awaiting ideas for what sort of creation these will grow into...but...TINY TOOLS!!! YAYAYAYAYAY!!!!!!!
And that last little bead at the bottom?  
Where is the whimsy in that?  Well....
Doesn't that look like a disco ball?  I THINK SO!!!  Hee hee!!
I'm not really certain of the direction that design is going, but MINIATURE DISCO BALL for the WIN!!!

I hope this post helped inject a bit of fun and whimsy into your day!
I'll see you on Friday!

Monday, July 29, 2013

Magical Monday! Surfing, Space and Sounds!

Hello Hello!
Welcome to Magical Monday!
Just a little note here to let you-all know that Fini Friday was indeed missed a few days ago.  I'm pondering a format and scheduling change to my blog, so stay tuned to see what happens next!
Now back to the regularly scheduled Magical Monday!

I've all videos to show you today, so get ready to click on a few links!
The first video is an aerial view of surfing.
I've always been fascinated by surfing and the apt metaphors it engenders with the cycles of life. 
I hope you enjoy! 

The second and last video is a treat for both eyes and ears! 
It is the recorded sights and sounds of a NASA Booster Rocket as a Space Shuttle is launched into space! 
Space is another fascination of mine, and there is so much to learn just in viewing this short movie! 
YAY! So there you have it! 
Glimpses into other worlds to start off your work week! 
I'll see you on Wednesday! 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Whimsy Wednesday! A Bit of Local Colour!

Hello Everyone!
Welcome to Whimsy Wednesday!
My week so far has been filled with unexpected blessings and I hope yours has too!
I was out and about today assisting in retrieving needed materials for home and had a brilliant idea!
That brilliant, whimsical, fun idea is the theme of this post and a few more to come!
But let me first set the stage...
This is a view from a Scenic Overlook of a local lake that we paused at whilst returning from our errand.
One of my favorite sights is watching sunlight sparkling as it reflects off of waves! And so it is here! I find this quite soothing and hope you do, too!

And this is my "ride"!
This is a M170 Front Line Jeep Ambulance.
This is exactly what you might remember from the TV Series "MASH".
The perfect open-air ride on a gorgeous summer day such as today!

As we were nearing home, I captured an image of the neatly mown hay fields.
I'm not certain if you can see it in the photo, but the cut hay arcs around that center island of grass in a beautifully clean, geometric way! Art can be found everywhere, I believe, and certainly in a beautiful job of cutting hay!

So now that I've set the stage, let me give you the introduction to the event (or in this case, creations)!
This is baling twine and is used to secure cut hay as it is rolled into bales. Doesn't it look pretty on the fender of that fabulous Jeep?!  Seriously!  I adore the colour of that twine!  
What do I have in mind to do with said vibrantly-hued twine? 
Create jewelry, of course!
Stay tuned to see what happens next!!!!
See you on Friday!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Magical Monday! Art, The World and Shakespeare's Star Wars!

Hello Everyone!
Welcome to Magical Monday!
I hope your weekend was full of joy!
My weekend was full of fun and unexpected yet happy things!
I've several fun things to show you so let's get started!
First, Shakespeare's Star Wars!
Click on the link for credits, details and a trailer from the book to watch!
I adore this project!
It is well-done, whimsical and fun!

The second thing I have to share are also videos, so you'll need to click the link to view it!
I love glimpses into worlds I haven't seen yet and this video tour of Myanmar is a good visual brain food!
Take a look!

Let's close with this more static stop at Nantes France and a Mechanical Elephant!
Credits and details are here.
Doesn't that look like fun?
What an amazing work of art!!!! 
And with that, I'll bid you adieu!
See you on Wednesday!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Fini Friday! Beautiful Beads and Beginnings!

Hello Hello! 
Welcome to Fini Friday! 
The weather has cooled off for us here in Minnesota and I am truly enjoying the lovely, cool breeze!! 
(Did I mention that it is cooler today? I think I did! *wink* *grin*) 
I hope there are similar blessings in your neck of the woods! 
This post is all about beginnings and beads! 
First up! 
A menagerie at the beginning stages of growth...
The ceramic pendants are hand-made by Melanie of Earthenwood Studio. I adore her work and love the colours, textures and simple shapes she brings into the world! 
The two pewter-coloured pendants to the left of the Earth and tawny Cat are three-dimensional, with different designs and words on both sides. I've glued in Swarovski crystals on opposing sides. 
The first photo shows one side, whilst the second shows the other. 
The spiral is one of the oldest sacred symbols that is found in every culture that I'm aware of and it always seems to represent eternal life.  How fitting to pair with the Earth!  Also completely appropriate is the word "Live". After all, if you're seeing this, you're living upon the Earth! 
Cats have always symbolized mystery and the unknown, so matching them with stars, a colour-changing crystal and the word "Imagine" was truly natural.
The second, seafoam-coloured cat pendant is growing on a path of it's own and undoubtedly will be accented with the hand-coloured fiber seen in the photo as well as other interesting charms, bits and thingees (Yup! That's the word I'm going with, though it likely isn't an official word in the English language *grin*).

Let's wrap this up by showing you those beautiful beads mentioned in the title!!
On the left is a stunning nugget of sunny Citrine.  
Citrine is thought to help with creativity, personal clarity and help weed out self-destructive tendencies, whilst helping the liver, digestive tract, heart, and muscles. 
The center bead is a gracefully cut Agate with dramatic flowing inclusions.  Agate is purported to be helpful in discerning truths and is an excellent healer for emotional upsets.  Legend says that it assists with memory, concentration and focus.
The last stone on the right is probably a sort of Jasper.  Legends surrounding Jasper state that it is stabilizing, healing and can help bring joy into life.  This stone would seem to have been formed by sedimentary action, then pressurized for eons to become this beauty!  There are so many different patterns to see in this single bead, I'm excited to see what happens next with it! 
Stay tuned to see!!
And so, at the conclusion of this post, I wish you a very joyous weekend!
See you on Monday!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Whimsy Wednesday! Scrolling Right Along!

Hello Everyone!
Welcome to Whimsy Wednesday!
The goal with these posts is two-fold.
First, to infuse some whimsy into the day and our lives.
Second, to give a peek into my artist's life and studio!
Today found me working with scrolls, curves and fluid shapes...hmmm... I wonder if that is the influence of Summer?
Title: Contemplation of the Heart
Ingredients: pearls, wood and bone beads, lead-free pewter, Czech glass, copper, surgical steel earwires (silver-plated, hypo-allergenic).
The pearls are called "potato pearls" in the industry, as they are irregular in shape and colour and resemble...well... potatoes!
I loved the idea of mixing such organic shapes with the comfortably-precise heart-shaped scrolls in the wood and bone focal beads. The designs of these beads seems both elegant and approachable, as if the dark wood shape in the centre were some sort of half-forgotten symbol of an earlier time!
A last-minute edition of the silvery stars seemed fortuitous and wise.

Title: Tempting a Pisces
Ingredients:  Birch wood, Czech glass, lead-free pewter, Artistic wire, surgical steel earwires (silver-plated, hypo-allergenic).

These earrings started with the cut wooden Pisces symbol and grew into completion with charming Czech glass fish, fluid-relief accens and brightly-coloured wire! 
This is a Pisces person at their best...warm, with a light touch and flashes of brilliane yet solidly 'grounded' in the rhythms of the Universe!
Note: Even those these are absolutely inspired by water and aquatic denizens, please do keep them dry!

Let me wrap up this post by wishing you a very best next few days and I'll see you on Friday!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Magical Monday! Sculptures and Soccer!

Hello Hello!
Welcome to this Magical Monday!
I hope your weekend was fabu!
Mine was interspersed with plotting, playing and resting... In other words - Just the way I like it!

I've some new, nifty things to show you today, so let's get started! Let's begin with Manhattan, NY (USA) and an ice bar!
This is the minus5degree Ice Bar, where everything is sculpted from ice!
Credits for the photo and details are here!
Isn't it gorgeous and a little intriguing?
I do wonder how comfortable it is, though!
Maybe someone will visit it and comment on my blog to let us know!

The breath-taking sculpture shown next is one of the many huge (alive!) plant sculptures at the 2013 Mosaicultures Internationales de Montréal. This is "an international mosiaculture competition in Montreal, Canada."
Credits for the photos and more details are here!
So much talent!
So many beautiful colours and healthy, growing plants!
It must be a wonder-filled visit to walk through this!

And now, onward to the soccer!
This is probably a type of soccer most of you haven't seen yet...I certainly hadn't!
Doesn't that look a little bit crazy and a lot of fun?!!  

So before we part ways, let me remind you of my BlogTalk Radio Interview tomorrow!
Tuesday, July 16th at 12 Noon (CST, USA)!
Join myself and Cheryl Patton of 1Woman's Wisdom as the Faeries reveal their thoughts about the month of July! 
This is a special synergy of insight as Cheryl brings her extensive Numerology expertise to the interview! 
Come join us! 
And with that, I'll see you Wednesday! 

Friday, July 12, 2013

Fini Friday! Vacation, Inspiration and Forward Motion!

Hello Hello!
Welcome to Fini Friday!
I've photos of the nifty conveyance used on our vacation and a few ideas and inspirations to show you today!
First, the conveyance!
This is a Jeep that served in the US Postal Service in it's life before we adopted it.  Isn't it lovely?
You see it here with the doors locked open as well as packed and ready to go on vacation!
I'm quite pleased with how all the packing and loading went as it involved some streamlining and downsizing.  It was a relief to easily cull through what to pack based on what had (and hadn't!) worked from previous years (we vacation at the same event every year).  This meant, too, that I was easily able to find what was wanted whilst on vacation! 
This a perfect fit with my ongoing intention to focus on the wanted or desired, rather than what no longer serves or is unwanted.

Onward to the ideas and  inspiration!
Ideas next!
This is a batch of loot I picked up on Walkabout a little while ago!  The burgundy tag in the middle is the metal identification tag from a motor vehicle!  It was found on the side of the road with no wrecks in sight (thankfully!).  I can only theorize that it flew off of a crushed or soon-to-be-recycled vehicle as it was hauled away.  I'm not *quite* certain what I'll do with that tag, but I *love* the idea of fashioning it into something completely different and new! 

Let's close this post with inspiration and a new event!
I found this very old frame some time ago and have been looking for the perfect thing to do with it since.  
And now I've found it!  The inspirational thoughts and quotes have been collected from various bits of chocolate wrappers, tea bags and so forth and I love the bohemian nature of it!
I keep this on my desk and refer to it often, even as I type this post! 

Now about that event....
Tuesday, July 16th at 12 Noon (CST, USA)!
Join myself and Cheryl Patton of 1Woman's Wisdom as the Faeries reveal their thoughts about the month of July! 
This is a special synergy of insight as Cheryl brings her extensive Numerology expertise to the interview! 
Come join us! 
And with that, I'll see you Monday! 

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Whimsy Wednesday! Starting Out Slowly...

Hello Everyone!
Welcome back to Whimsy Wednesday!
This is my first day back to the Intertubes after a week away! Whew!  There is a lot going on this summer!
I'm pleased to say that the lovely creation below was adopted at the CONvergence Art Show!  
Title: Home is Where the Heart Is
Congratulations to both person and creation!

I'm slowly easing back into the swing of things after the unpacking and etc. and thought I'd show you a few of the things I'm up to as that happens!

These are a few photos of a mini picket fence that covers one of the window on our house. 
These were painted white (of course!) some time ago, and are sorely in need of another layer of paint protection!

I do so love to paint and really enjoyed doing something creatively-mundane outside in the sunshine!  It is also addicting to see something be transformed by something as simple as a coat of paint!
Here is the "After" photo!

As the painting progressed, ideas for more colours and images popped to mind.  I'd love to be able to paint more complex things on that wonderful backdrop of white, so we'll see what grows into completion!
In the meantime, the paint will be allowed dry overnight and be treated to the same brilliant white to the other side.
I hope your summer is fabu and I'll see you on Friday!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Whimsy Wednesday and Fini Friday! A Special Selection!

Hello Hello!
Welcome to a dual edition of Whimsy Wednesday and Fini Friday!
Just a little housekeeping detail: I'll be on blog-vacation after this post!  I'll see you again next Wednesday!
This post is all about some of the hand-picked Sprite Creations that are awaiting adoption in the CONvergence Art Show over the long holiday weekend!
This convention is a fund-raising event for a non-profit organization that you can learn more about here.
So, let's get started!
Title: Co-Exit, With Chocolate!
Ingredients: lead-free pewter, Czech glass, Jeweler's bronze, Artistic wire, aluminum, copper.
I had so much fun creating this bracelet! The charms, from left to right are: something that reminds me of a temple bell in some exotic land, the yin-yang (a symbol of balance), a lotus flower with a star above it (lotus flowers are sacred to Buddhists), the Tree of Life (sacred to many forms of Pagan and Old World belief systems), spirals and stars (sacred symbols in all aboriginal legends across the globe), Celtic-style cross (an ancient mix of Christian and Pagan/Nature-based Worship), and a chocolate Kiss! Yup! There is the chocolate! Need I explain the whimsy in this piece?
A few other tidbits(HA!)...Copper has been a sacred metal in cultures that span the globe. The lock and key clasp includes a heart-shaped key. This symbolizes the key to living harmoniously with all belief systems is through an open heart. And finally, the colours used to suspend the charms match those associated with the seven Chakras of the body.
So! That's my suggestion for world peace - an open heart and chocolate!

Title: Elvan Fire
Ingredients: Popcap Pendant (Swarovski Crystal, paper, hand-coloured non-toxic resin, popcap), Earthenwood Studio gear link (ceramic, USA), lead-free pewter (USA), light bulb pendant (Zoa Art, USA), anodized aluminum, metal.
The firey teardrop in the Popcap Pendant is a Swarovski crystal!  The gear link is hand-crafted by Melanie of Earthenwood Studios! I love her work!  The light bulb pendant to the left of the Popcap Pendant is from Zoa Art in South Carolina (USA)! I adore the work of this husband and wife team so much! It is sculptural, architectural and sensual all at once!  This necklace creation is Elvish, Steampunk, Dieselpunk and absolutely unique!  The pendant, link and clasp are secured with jumprings woven in a mobius or infinity chainmaille weave using golden yellow and true red colours!  There is definitely a story to this creation! I can feel it!

Title: Her Majesty's Money 
Ingredients: Resin-encased (hand-coloured and painted with non-toxic resin) faux paper currency, Swarovski crystals (Sapphire and Crystal), Czech glass, Jeweler's Brass, surgical steel earwires(gold-plated). 
The idea for both of these creations was to pair them with Swarovski crystals in colours of jewels worthy of royalty. Gold, too, is always favored by the wealthy. And that is metal colour common to these two creations. 
Of course, the Queen Mother (featured on this faux bank notes) would have Diamonds (the closest Swarovski gets to diamond is crystal) and Sapphires! Also, whilst there is some 'frippery' to the design, it remains elegant and simple. 
Just like the Queen would want! 
Title: Investments 
Ingredients: Resin-encased (hand-coloured and painted with non-toxic resin) faux paper currency, Swarovski crystals (Ruby), Czech glass, Jeweler's Brass, surgical steel earwires(gold-plated).
These bank notes focus on a gentleman of stature and repute and so the creation needed a bit more lavishness and adventure! I wanted the earrings to be elegant, yet "dripping" with rubies" (which is the colour of the Swarovski crystals, by the way!). 
Also mixed in the design was the desire to convey a more inquisitive, and worldly mindset (indicated in the metal wire-work and mixing of metal tones). 
These are for those who seek their fortunes in the world, rather than those who rule the world with their power and fortune. 

And I've one more creation to tempt you with (though there are more Sprite Creations and so much more fabulous art in the Show!!!!)....
Title:  Keyper of Time
Ingredients: Gold vermeil, hand-crafted porcelin, old watch parts, hand-crafted brass, vintage glass and chain, metal.
 This necklace is a mix of found objects and objects d'art!  I'd been looking for a design to show off the vermeil box and oval bead and come upon this idea for something Steampunk Royalty would wear!  Mixed into the golden palette are many tiny watch gears, some lovely, textured and patterned porcelin ceramic links from Earthenwood Studio, Swarovski crystals and more!
The colour palette is classic and rich, yet this is an intriguing tapestry of subtle textures and contours!

And there you have it! 
The end of this post and the start of my vacation!

If you're intrigued about CONvergence, click here for more details. 
I'll  see you next Wednesday!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Magical Monday! Humor, Technology and Beauty!

Hello Everyone!
Welcome to Magical Monday!
I hope your weekend was fabu!
Let's start this post off with some humor! 
This photo and hat installment were taken in honor of George Orwell (author of 1984, among other classic books). Credits and details are here

Moving on to a more wonderous idea... 
This is what you get when you combine a Tesla coil, a human and a guitar!
Doesn't that look like fun?!?! Credits and details are here

Let's wrap this up with a bit of beauty and news! The beauty!
Credits and details are here
What I can tell you is that this is Park Keukenhof in Amsterdam. 
Isn't it gorgeous?! 

And the news.... I'll be offline (and on vacation!) after the dual Whimsy Wednesday and Fini Friday post on Wednesday!!! 
I'll return to the Internets next Wednesday, July 10th! Also? I'll have a very special selection of Sprite Creations at the CONvergence Art Show this weekend! 
If you're in the Twin Cities area, feel free to check out the convention, register at the door and take in the sights (including the Art Show)! 
See you Wednesday!