Friday, January 30, 2009

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

You've got mail!

It's winter. Not too many people are looking for new apartments right now. So I have time. Lots of time. I can't sit still so I head into our workshop and learn how to use new tools with a lot of help from a coworker. We made this new license plate mailbox last week.

Monday, January 26, 2009

shoot this

When a certain local prestigious university that shall remain nameless asked me to do a freelance job for them, I thought, what a fabulous idea to make some supplemental income.

The space was beautiful, but dark. I tried using my 100 pound tripod for some of the shots, but lugging that around got to be annoying quickly. Most was done hand held at less than 1/30th of a second. I held my breath a lot. And did a little praying that my shaky hands would relax.

I have to get over my fear of tricky lighting. It was nice to be shooting again. This job, while very difficult, switched on part of my brain that has been asleep for ages. Now I am ready to go to Key West with a fresh, clear head ready to shoot pretty things.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

The new project (part 2)

Those of you who know me know that I can't stand throwing things away. But also I can't stand when people throw away things that can still be useful to someone else. I think it's a sign of laziness. We live in such a disposal society where everything is fast and easy. If you don't like something, throw it out. If something needs a little work, replace it. It's afforable because little 6 year old Chinese kids are making more for your consumption! Sometime in the past year I have become a little bit of a dumpster diver. I try to keep things out of the landfill that have some life left to them. Lately this means I'm dragging furniture and appliances that were left behind by tenants where I live. It's really not hard to bring your old clothes or old appliances to the Salvation Army or the shelter or even give it to the New Haven Furniture Coop. But we're all too busy to care. It's not difficult to fix things. Where I live especially makes me angry. Tenants and employees throw out perfectly fine working vacuum cleaners, dressers, clothes, tools, appliances...everything. If it's dirty I pull it out and clean it. If it's busted, I unbust it. If it's perfectly fine I put it on freecycle or bring it to Salvation Army. With the amount of waste around here I could probably make a full time job out of this reclaiming materials. This reuse, renew, recycle thing is filtering into my crafts.

I started with making license plate photo albums like this one...

There is minimal waste left over when I am done putting these together. (Just the stuff left behind from cutting the rivets.)

But then I constructed this last week.

About a quarter of each license plate was left over. I held on to it incase I could use the extra pieces. At first I thought I would make key chains with left over letters or numbers. But instead I used the waste to make license plate star JR.

Now the waste is only about one inch per plate. I could probably make another mini star. Maybe next week.

But for now both stars are together at last. Baby Moma and Jr found a new home.

Or maybe Jr will reside in the kitchen.

I have some dumpster diving to do...

Saturday, January 10, 2009

The new project

It's winter which means it's time for me to create new things for this summer's craft shows. I really only want to work with license plates these days. And that inspired this new crafty adventure. This is most likely going to lead to many more finger injuries, but I think it is worth it. A coworker and I spent a lot of time trying to get this just right. The day started with a trip to TJ Maxx in hopes of finding an antique barn star to use as a template. Hidden in a dusty corner behind other home junk was a clear plastic bag full of the star's metal pieces. At first I wondered what the hell is this???

After finagling it all together it turned into this beautiful decorative star. I traced over the star to get the correct measurements and angles for my license plates. My tracing was no good so it took the good part of a day to get it right and make a flat jig to use to trace lines onto the plates. After a few hundred reconfigurations, we came up with this...

Decoration or weapon?

I am obsessed with Wyoming license plates.

I heart Cowboy Joe!

I don't know how many of these I will make. They are a bit...well...labor intensive. But pretty awesome once they are done! This first one took 2 people a better part of a day to complete. Of course there are new fangled machines that I could buy that could assemble this in about ten minutes. But that seems like cheating.