Sunday, October 31, 2010

What Else can I do with this Project?

How many times have you purchased a pattern or a book and painted every project on a different surface than the artist did? Probably a lot would be the answer, we as painters and crafters are a terribly creative group otherwise we wouldn't be interested in this hobby. In this economy we have to be very frugal and if we are going to purchase a pattern or a book we want to make sure that we get the most out of our money. I'm no different, as I complete any project I often like to come up with another use for the project for myself and for all of you who purchase my patterns. If you look at the pattern "Falling Leaves" under the Fall Pattern Sub-Category you will see that for the money you get three different projects that you can complete: 3 Fall Cards, the Fall Lazy Susan, and the battery operated Ornament Candleholders. The cards would be lovely to take in conjunction with a bottle of wine as a hostess gift, the ornaments can either be placed on a tree for the fall/winter holidays or can be used as battery operated candleholders, and the lazy susan could be switched out with charger plates or candle plates. How about instead of plates you use the pattern to design a table cloth or a table runner. I think that these leaves would be gorgeous painted around the edge of a table cloth and used for Thanksgiving dinner with a beautiful centerpiece. I love fall and love the look of fall leaves but keeping them intact is often a challenge why not paint them and enjoy the look without the dust that so many of us are allergic to.

Often when I design a project I like to come up with an alternative to the surface that I've used and in the next few blog posts I'll use my creativity to come up with new surface ideas for my patterns. Post your ideas as well and lets see if we can get a running dialogue going.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Loss of Painting Magazines

It has been a sad day in the painting industry to hear of yet again another painting magazine being eliminated. I was in the process of developing two new projects that the editor and I were discussing, this morning I received an email answering an inquiry that I had sent concerning one project and then this evening finding out that the company had chosen to eliminate this magazine as well as their other craft magazines. After receiving this email that I know many of you also received I could hear the sadness and shock that the editor must have felt. I know that this was probably an economy based decision but it makes me feel so sad for the jobs that were lost due to this decision as well as the loss for the artists/designers that developed such lovely designs for the industry.

We as painters need to band together to keep the industry alive and we can do that by communicating with each other on the painting forums, frequenting the blogs that we enjoy, and communicating with the editors and owners of the magazine companies not only our complaints about the magazine issues but also what we like and appreciate about the job that they are doing. I know many of you already interact with online painting groups, I personally belong to a number of them and post as often as my schedule allows.

I've heard talk that online magazines may be the wave of the future with subscribers downloading their magazines to home computers or personal devices. Currently I receive an educational magazine in a digital copy and must say that I miss the smell and feel of holding the magazine in my hands. To keep this from happening we need to speak up and help the industry by being proactive to keep an artform that we love alive.

On the front page of my website I've suggested that you leave comments and interact with the blogs that you enjoy, I know that I would like to have that type of feedback to provide my customers with the best quality service that I can.

Friday, October 29, 2010

JB Weld Kwik Wood Ornament Pattern Available

I finally finished the ornament patterns and have them available on my website, all four pattern photos are currently on the website. You can purchase the patterns as E-Patterns to make as Christmas gifts for friends or for your craft shows. Kwik Wood is so easy to use and made quick work of the sculpting process. I owned a set of sculpting tools because I have been interested in sculpting for some time now but if you do not have the tools there is no need to invest in a set as you can use household items and even can make a few of your own. I give you sculpting instructions, illustration templates, hints and tips for making your own sculpting tools or household items to use in each of the patterns as well as numerous photos for reference. I purchased my first tube of Kwik Wood at Home Depot but later found it at a local hardware store. If you like these patterns please leave comments so I can get the feedback on this set for future reference.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

JB Weld Kwik Wood Ornaments

My last post mentioned that I was using JB Weld Kwik Wood to sculpt with, adding it to wooden shapes to develop something new and different. I really love the process as well as the product. It paints up beautifully and even though you have a fairly small window to work with it is relatively easy to use. Here is one example of an ornament that I made using it. This pattern is soon to be released on my website for purchase. I hope that you like this.