Monthly Archives: September 2012

Why everyone’s on the moon and is there a good reason why I haven’t thought about getting them off yet.

Yes you heard right, the moon.

I stumbled upon this on-line e-course, that, for some reason I’ll never fully understand, I signed up for. I think I was having a ‘moment’. I’ve written about my moments before. Some of them are dark, moping, droopy moments. Some swirling, anxiety, omg moments. And I’m sure there are plenty other moments in the whole spectrum of moment psychology which I’ve chosen to not admit to. I think the moment I was having at that moment was the one that made me think I needed to take this e course. (Don’t ask me – I still don’t understand).

Anyway, the fact is I’ve only watched the first video, but, it was quite interesting. It was about cleaning out your house, the house in question being your psychological house, but, darn if my real house doesn’t need cleaning too. How did she know! She starts with getting everyone out of your house. Everyone, even your kids and husband, if you have kids and husbands, which is kind of ironic as I’ve been trying to get the kids out for a while now. They all went off to college, and then they all came back again! Now you tell me, is that wrong or what? The exercise is that some people who used to be in your house you might allow back on the porch, some in the garden or the sidewalk, etc. until you have a clear idea of who is healthy to have around and who brings you down, then you can start letting them back into your house. You get the idea. Some people you might need to send further. Particularly worrisome people might have to visit Africa, although that only makes sense if you don’t already live in Africa. Then, she says, there are the Moon People.

At that point I started to get a bit worried about favouritism and who should go where and for what reason and it all got to be too complicated. So I decided to put everyone on the moon. Then I started to think about all the people who would still be too close even if they were on the moon, and, also the moon is rather cool I think and perhaps even too nice for some people, so I started working through the other planets, but they all seemed too close, you know, being in my universe and all, so finally, out of ideas and getting a bit desperate I decided that these people must go into the black hole. For the time being you understand. Only then I got caught up with life without moments and forgot to watch the second video and now everyone’s still up there. I feel as though this is unfinished business. There has been no closure. And that the whole exercise, while quite freeing I have to admit, has left me slightly more worried than before I started.

To all my Peeps I feel that I must explain. There really is no need to feel upset that you are on the moon, I did it only so that I didn’t discriminate, (well, except for the black hole people that is. Maybe they should come back to the moon). I imagine you all in some kind of statis really. Happily bobbing around, just hanging out. Down here, in real life, you’re all still around, but I really must get down to watching that second video soon.


Links, murder and Atticus Finch.

Lots happening with the links.

As you can see I’ve made quite a few of them.

If you remember, this was the first piece I made with them.

And the second.

Then I got a bit carried away.

I even made a little something to go with them – just because.

Other jewelry news is that I’ve finally started to pay attention to pricing my work properly.

Thanks to Danielle who is also a jewelry maker and who has helped me begin to see the error of my ways, I have begun to work with a pricing formula. I have to say that this hasn’t been easy for me. Yep, the whole self esteem, lack of confidence, stuff comes back to bite me each and every time, but, and this is an important but, I am getting better at it. The more I work on perfecting my craft and the more I realize that what I want to do with the money I make from it is very important to me, the easier it’s becoming to take myself more seriously. Man, and it only took me fifty years!

Thank you Danielle for your nudge.

In between making the links I finally finished listening to, To Kill a Mockingbird. When I make jewelry I can only listen to audio books with earphones if they’re on my i pod. To Kill a Mocking bird is on c.d. and as I hammer a lot and plug my ears with the christmas gift, I miss a lot of the narrative so this time I could only listen when I was painting.

You wont be surprised to hear that it was as brilliant to listen to as it was to read. Sissy Spacek was the narrator. My favourite part each time is the part where Scout, Jem and Dill go to the court house when Atticus is sitting guard outside. Very powerful. Now I’m back to the murder mysteries, (don’t ask me why, maybe my therapist can enlighten me). Inspector Linley this time. I’ve seen this on the t.v. and have to say that I don’t really care for the actors in it, particularly the sullen side kick. But, she’s exactly like that in the book so who am I to criticize. The audiobook is just o.k. it hasn’t really grabbed me yet, although, again with the female impersonation. Why? is all I have to say. Why does the very nice male listening voice, have to try to play the woman as a woman? It never works. The women always come over as weak, pathetic, whiney, girly, silly people – and not in a good way. Just read me the story will you. I can imagine the rest.

Not that it upsets me or anything …


Silver and grunge copper.

sterling silver

 

sterling silver with opal bead

 

copper with red creek jasper bead

 

copper, sterling silver, and opal bead

 

copper, sterling silver and some bead I can’t remember … sorry

 

copper, sterling silver, czech glass beads and little seed beads

 

Interested in buying one of these? Just leave a comment and I will list it for you on Etsy.

 


The tale of two links.

Wondering what else you can do with those links?

You remember the ones.

Well fret no more.

To find the post with instructions on how to make these click HERE, however, I will recap.

First make the links.

This time I used 16 gauge sterling silver wire and I worked on them in a slightly different way than the first post – just to keep it exciting.

Cut 1″ lengths and hammer each end as before.

Then bend them over your super neat pliers and bring the ends together with flat nose pliers.

You will notice, with some frustration, that the two ends wont come together completely flat. Things like this bug the bejeezus out of me,

so,

gently squeeze together the round end of the loop just enough to bring together the flat ends.

It doesn’t seem much but this solves the problem. Just be sure not to squeeze the loop so much that you flatten the round end too much, you still want a nice looking loop at the finish.

This is where I changed it up.

The first time I made the links I drilled the holes in the ends before I made the loop. This worked very well for me but you have to make sure the holes line up after you bend the silver into the link.

This time I drilled the hole after I made the link.

Now, apparently I drill the same way I fish.

When I get a bite I reel the thing in as fast as I can until the fish is almost speared on the end of the rod, then I whack the hell out of it with the priest until it’s absolutely dead. Not the mostly dead as in my last post you understand. All dead. I can’t stand playing with it by casually reeling it in. I can’t stand its not knowing I’m going to whack it on the head. I just don’t want it to see it’s coming.

This is why I don’t fish any more.

Back to the jewelry.

When I drill I tend to push that bit down into the silver like there’s a race on. There’s no messing around, I just spear that thing like I don’t want it to see it’s coming.

Yesterday I found out, once again, that my fishing technique is not necessarily the best approach to drilling.

Feel free to learn from my mistakes, they might just save your life someday.

NOTE:

If you are not holding the link tightly enough (I use an old pair of pliers so as not to get my fingers too close) and you jam that bit down like someone who wants to get catching a fish over with as soon as is earthly possible, you will likely take your eye out.

In this instance the bottom end of the link didn’t want to stay put as the drill came down through the first end. Because I was happily going full guns with the drilling the link caught up in the bit and whipped itself out of the pliers. This has happened before (I’m a slow learner), but this time, and I don’t really know how, the link flew off into the room. A Final Destination moment for sure.

I quickly found out that, in this instance at least, slowly but surely wins the race and that, however much I don’t want to admit it, my high school metalwork teacher was right. Always respect the machines, however small and innocent they appear.

Moving on.

Once the holes have been drilled take out your preferred sanding tool and even out the ends into perfect rounds.

This is my tool of choice,

Next you will need some 18 gauge sterling silver wire which you cut into just under 2.5 cm lengths and bend in half.

Thread the loop into two of the links.

Now comes the tricky part, although if I did it, you can too.

Hold the links in your soldering tweezers and ball up the ends of the wire with your torch.

This is only tricky because you have to be careful not to heat up the flattened ends of the links too much else they melt too.

It’s also tricky if you have short tweezers. Then you’ll find you burn your fingers constantly until you wise up and buy a longer pair. Took me a year. Told you, slow learner.

Hold the new link with a pair of round nose pliers and bring together the balled ends slightly with a pair of flat nose pliers until you have a good shape

Carry on joining the links

until you have a bracelet length, or a length for whatever else you want to use a chain for. (See that link that hasn’t come completely flat together? Annoying).

Now, if you had thought ahead you would have already made your clasp before you closed up the last link. If you’re me, however, you wouldn’t have,

so,

find some 16 gauge wire and wrap a small loop from the end of it around the last link.

Solder this together making sure not to solder the loop onto the link. You want it to move freely.

Now make your hook clasp, pickle the chain, dunk it in liver of sulphur and polish to a nice sheen.

A bracelet.

Just for you.


Mostly dead.

Well it’s Friday.

Damn if this doesn’t happen every week!

I like Fridays but they’re coming around too quickly for my liking. I start on Monday thinking its a new life, a new start, a new, bright, wonderful opportunity to rock the world, lose weight and make beautiful, interesting, different art, and then before you know it its Friday and I’m left wondering what the h*ll happened? Where did all my new opportunities go?

They went to next Monday, that’s where they went. And that ain’t getting to be so cool anymore. Before I know it the only new opportunity I’ll be getting is what it feels like to be old, grey(er), and practically dead.

That makes me think of Billy Crystal.

(Just love the way the mind works. Keeps me smiling that’s for sure).

If you haven’t seen, The Princess Bride, you should. It will restore your Friday’s lost opportunity mood into a, I think I’m going to smile forever, mood. That’s unless you’re all dead of course, in which case there’s not a lot to be done about it.

I don’t know about you but I’m feel better already.

I think I’m going to get out there and rock the world today,

Friday or not …


Baby steps.

Today I am going to work on this,

and this,

I’m going to try to keep with the acrylics on the first one. The bottom one, because I’ve already started over the acrylics with oil pastel, I’ll finish with the pastels.

If I can follow through (always my problem) with the acrylics I think I will prefer the top painting to the bottom one. The oil pastels seem less spontaneous to me although I love the richness of the colours. (You can’t tell here as the photograph is bad).

I applied to the art festival I do each year. This time I applied to take some paintings as well as my jewelry. I’m just not sure though. I’m always saying that maybe next year I’ll be ready. Ready to display my jewelry in a more professional manner. Ready to sell my jewelry as a proper business. Ready to make a real effort at painting, etc., etc. But next year is always the same as this year. This is why I’ve applied for painting also.

I don’t think my paintings are very good. I’d like to work on them to a point where I feel comfortable trying to sell them but confidence always gets in the way of me even trying (hence the worry wart). This blog has helped me though. I am putting them out there, warts and all (no offense to my wart) and it’s becoming easier to get over myself.

Now, finally, I have sent off some photo’s to the art festival people – even though I have none finished.

(Where’s that darn worry wart when you need him!).

Baby steps people :)


Sometimes it’s hard being me.

Especially when I don’t know what I’m doing.

Or rather, I do know what I’m doing but I don’t really want to know.

My acetylene ran out yesterday. It’s been trying to run out for some time now but yesterday it gave a final, (pathetic really), puff and gave out. I made some cold connection earrings instead, but, today I knew I was going to have to go replace the old girl.

The last two I made with my little creme brulee torch.

Couple of things I don’t like about replacing the acetylene.

1. What if the neighbours see me lugging that big, somewhat dangerous looking, cylinder around.

2. What if I blow up.

I’m pretty sure the neighbours think I’m strange anyway, so perhaps that isn’t quite as important as the whole blowing up thing.

I put the tank in the car, wedging it between the back of the front passenger seat and the rear seat. It’s a sleek operation with all those electrical chair moving buttons gliding the chair into positions it’s never been before. I feel as though I’m preparing for take off or something way more exciting than a trip down the road, even if that trip is fraught with anxiety.

I hold on to the tank all the way to the gas place wondering what it feels like to have your hand blown off, and then I laugh, casually to myself, because that really isn’t going to happen. More likely my whole body will blow up at the same time leaving the hand worry somewhat redundant.

I try to imagine myself in some high trauma job, like bomb disposal, and pretend like I drive acetylene tanks around all day, just because. But, it doesn’t work as I know today is going to be the day I woke up unaware that I’m to be blown to pieces.

I ask S to come with me, but he says no. I ask B to come, but she says no. I feel bad that I’ve asked them. What if I blow them up too. Would that be fair. No. So, instead, I just feel sorry for myself and get on with the job in hand wondering why I have to pick a craft that can kill a person at any time. Perhaps it’s time to take up basket weaving.

Just as I get used to hauling around explosives in the car, I find the gas place has gone. It’s closed down. Abandoned like the Mary Celeste. A ghost shop. I call and they tell me they’ve moved (duh). I download map quest on my phone, (if you haven’t got this, get it, you can find out how to get to the nearest welding supplies shop any time you want with it), I call P when I realize I’ll be diving a fair way further. Does he know how painful it will be to blow up? He avoids the question which probably means very painful.

There’s a bit of a hiccup when the map woman tells me to do a left hand u turn for no apparent reason, but, after a moment of cussing (me, not her) she gives in, recalculates, and I finally find the new shop. I have to admit to the guy that I don’t want to remove the hose and pressure gauge myself as I don’t want to blow up. He reluctantly does it for me. Not in his job description I think to myself.

Now I have to make it home, on the freeway this time, hoping that all the other people on the road wont hit me. I follow a big, chemical tank truck, because it makes sense to me that if I go, we all go, but have to wonder, am I really in more danger than the guy passing me at 85 mph on his motorbike doing wheelies with no helmet, knee or elbow covering. Can you say carpet burn. (I know it will be concrete scrape but just the thought of carpet burns on concrete does my head it).

So I made it home o.k. I did make S take the tank back out to the studio. He moaned the whole way. Apparently it was heavy. Not too heavy for his poor ol’ mum with dodgy wrists though.

I haven’t used it yet. I’m about to go out there now. If you don’t hear from me again, rest assured, it will probably have been quick …


%d bloggers like this: