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I am happy to share my thoughts, interests with you.
For all my other creative ideas please check the links to my other blogs.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Joined Flickr

I have finally decided that it was time to join Flickr and give my various creative creations more exposure. As you can see now, I have added 3 Flickr badges to the left column of the blog, one for photos, crafts and my graphics.
I am happy to sell my photos, if you are interested in the high definition version email me.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Our city's painted junction boxes

While most cities have their painted cows, lobsters or what ever animal, Dartmouth/Halifax has their painted phone company junction boxes. These boxes are for every 500 customers and are in the oddest places. I have not been able to figure out how to easily find them. I just seem to happen to see them and then take a picture. No two are painted alike.
I started taking photos of them last year in Dartmouth and put them on my website. In May and just recently I came across some I had not documented yet. So today, I finally decided to create the collages so that I can add them to my other website later on.

There are still some more in Dartmouth that I have missed and I haven't even started taking pictures of the ones in Halifax.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Blue Jay

At lunch time I saw a blue jay sitting on the fence between us and our neighbour's house. Usually they don't stay around too long, but this one knew I was watching him through the window and didn't mind at all. So I moved to the side door and grabbed the camera that was sitting on the counter and took these shots through the storm door glass with full zoom. My canon A720 has a 6x digital zoom and a stabilizer, I am very surprised at how clear the pictures turned out.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Four Generations

Yesterday my husband came home all exited about a CBC radio program he heard on his morning walk about how 4 generations work together. The link takes you to the 22 minutes documentary called: Cubicle Clash! How the Generations Get Along in the Workplace
  • The so-called traditionalists, past retirement age but still in the workforce.
  • The fifty and sixty something babyboomers.
  • The thirty and forty-something generation X'ers.
  • And then there are the twenty something millenials -or generation Y - just starting their careers.
I like the sociological analysis of the program as they come to conclusions that I have come to on my own recently. I am a babyboomer, my 30 year old twins are generation X'ers and my youngest, 20 year old, is definitely a millenial. This program was a confirmation of my own observation in my family how the different generation view their world and interact with it. This program definitely provides food for thought.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

More about Colors

Today as I was reading my RSS feeds I came across this article about colors: Mary Tafoya's Seriousbeadin': Color Friends and Lovers. I always like it when I seem to tune into universal stream and pick up similar thoughts. So, I guess this weekend's theme was colors.

I have always loved strong colors and find it very difficult to paint with pastel colors. The proof is in the pudding, so the saying goes and the image to the right just confirms this. It is of one of my CD colorings that I made with melted crayons and an electric batiking tool.

I also just remembered that I once found a website called Colorstrology by Pantone, where they give a color for each day of the year. You can now check out what your personal color is according to your your birthday.

My color is Pantone 17-3925, Persian Violet and the key words are: poignant, precise, talented

Saturday, July 26, 2008

My Color Inspirations

Where do I get my color schemes from? I love to color black and white crop circle diagrams like the one to the right or clipart. Most of the time I come up with my own colors, but sometimes I am stuck. So over time I have gathered a number of links for website that offer free color schemes or let you grab a scheme from a photo.

Here are some of my favorite ones:
  • ColorLovers - subscribing to the RSS feed from the site gives a daily color combo
  • Kuler - Adobe's kuler website let's you create your own color scheme or use one of their
  • - use your own picture or theirs to create a color scheme

Friday, July 25, 2008

Another Calendar

I have just finished updating my last calendar for 2009. This one is a 1 year vertical calendar that prints on one page and then is folded into thirds and glued shut. I find it very useful to have all the info available like this.

The only true measure of success is joy

Thursday, July 24, 2008

2009 Dodecahedron Calendar

After reading about the 2009 dodecahedron calendars at Lifehacker, I decided it was time to get my colorful versions ready. I have discovered that in the rest of the world calendars don't start with Sunday, but with Monday, so to accommodate everybody I created 2 versions of the calendar. On set starts the week with Sunday and the other with Monday.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Working in the garden

After being stuck in the house for a couple of days due to long needed rain, I could go out today again to garden. As it is still very humid and the garden still quite wet, I had to decide on a chore that would be easy to do. Well, so I thought at least, but in this humidity any work is hard.

Earlier this month I transplanted a hosta plant underneath our huge spruce tree and it looked so forlorn there, so I decided it was time to make it look better and to add some mulch around it. That was the idea, but then I realized that I needed some more rocks to create a border around it. So off I went with my wheelbarrow to the empty plot a few houses down the road to collect once again some more rocks. Hubby calls me lovingly 'rocky racohen', a pun on our last name. By the time my hour of gardening was up the garden was transformed as you can see in the photo below. The difference between last year and this year is quite impressive.

I don't have floweres growing in a pot this year as they did not do too well last year and on top of it the broke split over the winter when I left it outdoors.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Bead Embroidered Turtle

Well, after making a little turtle with beads, I had to see if I could bead embroider a turtle without first drawing the design on the fabric. I decided to use a button as the center of the shell and then bead around it. I found that after I had sewed the button to the fabric that the design worked better when I glued the button down. I had found at the dollar store some plastic beads shaped like turtles and found them to be perfect to use in the shell. Hubby said that he liked the turtle without the background, but I kind of like the background the way it turned out. I had tube of mixed beads and just shook out a few and used them without rhyme or reason and am quite pleased the way it turned out.
I am still not quite sure how to finish the design. So for the time being I just wait until inspiration strikes.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Beaded Turtle

After seeing some really cute beaded turtles at Natalies Perlen website, I just had to give it a try myself. The first one I made I wasn't happy with it, so I took it apart and started again, this time I liked the result. I was just using bits and pieces of beads I found in my stash. All in all not bad for the first one.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

View from MacDonald Bridge

Last year I took advantage of the closing of the pedestrian bridge lane of the MacDonald Bridge to take pictures of the North side from the bicycle lane. I still wanted to take pictures from the South side, the pedestrian lane, but I could not take it on a sunny day as no matter which way I would take them I would have to shoot into the sun. So yesterday, Saturday July 19/08, the weather was great, slightly cloudy and warm. You don't want to walk across the bridge in cold weather as it is very cold and windy over the water. Even on the warm summer day the temperature on the bridge was noticeably cooler.
The picture above was taken just past the tollbooths on the Dartmouth side

I got some lovely pictures, but due to the fact the it was lightly cloudy I have a lot of blownout sky pictures and have to adjust it in Photoshop. So putting my album together is taking a little longer than I anticipated.

Friday, July 18, 2008

More About Crop Circles

I am not familiar with British geography and have always wondered about why there are so many crop circles in Wiltshire and where exactly that is. Then I came across this article by Linda Moulton Howe at about British crop circles with maps and interesting information about the meaning of some of the crop circles. Wow, there is so much information about the crop circles and their meaning. No wonder I am drawn to color the circle diagrams. The coloring to the right is from the crop circle of July 7/08 in Sudheim, Lower Saxony, Germany.
On July 15/08 at Avebury Manor, Wiltshire, England appeared a crop circle showing the planets as they will align themselves on December 21/2012 the day of the end of the Mayan long count calendar. I am planning on coloring that diagram next. It is very interesting to read all the comments for that crop circle.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Morning swim in Oat Hill Lake

After finishing my morning gardening I was tired and hot and was looking for a pleasant way to cool off. Rather than jumping in the shower as I usually do, hubby and I decided to go for a swim. I live in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia just across the harbour from Halifax. Technically it is all one big city. Dartmouth is called the city of lakes and we are lucky to live next to one of those. The lake is our hidden treasure. Most people don't even know that it exists, due to the fact that it is on a dead end street and not visible unless you are on that street. It is about 500 meters long and just under 100 meters wide and about 20 meters deep. It is not a big lake, but very private as there are only houses on our street next to the lake and even here only on the side that is opposite the lake. There is a path around the whole lake, where we go for our daily walks. The lake is spring-fed, which is very noticeable when swimming as there are cold spots where there are springs. This has been my first swim in the lake this year, but it won't be the last.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Matchbook Albums

Recently, I have come across matchbook albums a number of times. I took that to be an omen and set out to figure out how to create my own design. After a number of attempts I succeeded and made 3 different versions. One is advertisement for my creations, one is an album for the city where I live and one has my favorite quotes. I have put together a tutorial with my Photoshop template files and instructions so that you can also make your own matchbook albums.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Crop Circles

I still have not figured out my fascination with crop circles, but I am still drawn to color the diagrams. Currently, I feel stuck in the way I color them, but I will just keep on playing around with them. But what do they mean? I really want to know. Then I came across Whitley Strieber's June 13/08 blog entry and it deals with crop circles. He offers the idea that crop circles are self-activating software. That make a lot of sense to me. A message is being transmitted, but it bypasses the usual ways we receive the information. I will have to let this thought digest.

Monday, July 14, 2008

More Bead Embroidery

I discovered that I love bead embroidery and that combined with my love of recycling lead me to create these adorable beaded amulet bags. I found that I had a couple of shoulder pad forms, the thin foamy kind and was trying to come up with a use for them. I really liked the shape and then it hit me they would be great for amulet bags. So off I went looking for a design when I found the sitting goddess on my hard drive. I traced the design on a shoulder pad and started embroidering. Here is a link of my progress.

Now that I had used one shoulder pad, I had to find a design for my second one. I wanted something different and ended up using the 'Solomon's Knot' design and created this very colorful amulet bag with an 8 inch beaded handle. Both bags are for sale.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Bead Embroidery on Paper

I love to do bead embroidery and I love to work with paper. The problem with bead embroidery on paper are the holes. Pre-punching the holes leads to the problem that the holes don't match up with the beads. Then the other problem is how to get the design on the paper so that it won't show up on the paper.

I found a way to do it by tracing the design on Glad Press'n Seal plastic wrap and then placing that on the paper. As it is low tack, it is easy to remove afterwards and does not leave any trace. If it get stuck between the beads, it can be cut and pulled out with tweezers.

The little tree is the result of using plastic wrap. Check my other designs here.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Where do you get your inspiration from?

My inspiration comes from everything around me and sometimes from the least expected places. When reading an article in a newspaper or magazine or online suddenly a line jumps out at me saying exactly what I need to hear at that particular moment. I try to stay open to inspiration and look at the bright side of life. There is an opportunity in each and every obstacle we encounter. The same goes for my photography, by taking my camera along every time I leave the house, gives me the opportunity to be ready when I see special picture and have the camera handy. How many times, before I did this, did I see a cool picture only to have to let it go because I did not have the camera with me. Like the boy scouts motto: be prepared, I try to be prepared and thankful for all and any inspiration coming my way.

This morning I was thinking what should I write about in my blog today and then as I made my way through my RSS feeds this article from Chris Walker was my inspiration. I love reading his articles, they are so down to earth, straightforward and real.

The quote in the fontplay above is from an article I ready by Whitley Strieber one day on his Unknown Country website. As I said, inspiration can come from unexpected sources.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

2009 Monitor Calendars

I just finished the 2009 computer monitor calendars. I find it very convenient to have a calendar right on the frame of my monitor. They were very popular last year and I have already gotten request for next year's calendar. So I decided it better get working on it. It took some time as I also had to create a version that starts the week with Monday and not Sunday like here in North America. I had gotten feedback about why the weeks starts with Sunday.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

My Paper Model

I love paper models and recently I came across a site where they gave you a blank template and asked you to contribute a colored version. I have never done this before, but felt drawn to give it a try. I looked through my own graphics and found one that I thought would look good. The picture shows my finished creation. It was fun creating it, but I am not sure I want to keep it up.

If you want to try the model, here is the link to it. It is a big file and will take some time to download.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Mayan Calendar

An email I received today about my Mayan Calendar Day Glyphs, refreshed my memory. Looking at them now, it seems all so long ago that I created them. Everything in life is cyclical or like waves and in 2000 and 2001 that seemed to have been the wave I was riding. I am still attracted to the Mayan calendar, but now it is just part of my general interests.

I selected the Monkey Glyph because according to some Mayan Calendars I am a monkey and I strongly resonate with the meaning of it.

I guess I like the Mayan Calendar for the same reason that I like Numerology, they both are cyclical and follow a natural progression. It seems to appeal to my way of thinking.

"Art is not what you see,
but what you make others see."

~ Edgar Degas

Monday, July 7, 2008

Cool Texture Pictures

This weekend my habit of taking my camera along wherever I go, paid off. The old local Walmart was being converted to grocery store, but due to asbestos and other contaminants it turns out to be more efficient to just tear it down and start new. So they are tearing the building apart and as they are doing that, they are sorting the materials as they work.

Look at the cool pictures I got of the various materials: bricks, metal pieces, metal pipes and electrical wiring. Now I just have to check into the stock picture sites to see if there is any interest in these pictures.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Unique Clock from Video Tapes

After painting my spare bedroom and rearranging the electronics, I needed a clock in the room. I have found that most new clocks are terribly noisy and so very annoying. Then I remembered that I had a clock I had made with a CD that I didn't really need any longer. So, I took it apart and created a new clock with video tapes, corrugated plastic, wooden corner molding and a graphic for the front. Read how I did it here.

I really like the way it turned out and hubby is so thrilled. He plays guitar and has a number of instruments and we will make guitars the them of the room.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Card Cable Organizer

I don't usually link to other blogs, but when I saw this entry I just had to pass it on. Yesterday and today I have been painting the spare bedroom and now I have to put humpty dumpty back together and that means hooking up the TV and digital cable box again with all those wires.

So when I saw this simple way of keeping the wires organized I was thrilled. This is ingenious. I have tons of those fake credit cards floating around and have been wondering what I could do with them. Now I have found a great use. I will replace the picture to the right from with my own once I get things setup.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Canada Day

Today is Canada Day. The day started out very foggy, but by lunch time the sun had come out and the afternoon turned out to be quite hot and sticky (27°C). I decided to make my version of a Canadian lunch, chicken breakfast sausages, pancakes with maple syrup, a salad and fresh strawberries. A month ago I bought a George Foreman grill and I really like it and use it very often. With just 2 people in the household it is really handy. Using the oven for 2 small items is often overkill and I can use it instead of the bbq. This is the first time I made breakfast sausages in the grill and they turned out yummy in only 5 minutes. That gave me time to make my milk and eggfree pancakes. I find making pancakes from scratch takes as much time as using a pancake mix, but mine are much tastier. I got the recipe when my children were small and had milk allergies and have used the recipe ever since.