Monday, July 23, 2012


I have zero training in photography (which might be apparent to some of you, haha).  But necessity breeds invention, so when I first started out I tried a bunch of different things just to get a good shot.  I also take many many many pictures of the same items(s) in order to get a few good ones.  



The two photos above are the same set.   I love the walnut wood grain in the above photo, but I am having trouble getting the new "back drop" to be as luminous as I would like. 

When I first started out, I was taking photos on my computer table (the two above photos), which is walnut as well, but it has a lacquer on it, which I prefer.  I just need to put a finish on the raw wood from the first photo, I don't know what has taken me so long! (Actually, I do.  I also have the white back drop, which makes things fairly easy to photograph. LAZY.)  I would still photograph on my desk, but it is no longer in the right position to catch the sunlight.  I only like to use natural light to photograph.  I know some people like a light box set up, but I have never gotten it to work for me.  Plus it seems a bit uniform and dull, I like the drama that that the lighting from natural light can produce.  Of course it isn't as consistent, and you have to be careful to not overdo it.  It can also look different during different parts of the day.

Later afternoon/early evening makes everything a cooler blue.  I really like this effect.  It seems calm. Close to mid-day is much cleaner and brighter:

I feel like photographing towards the middle of the day and avoiding the blue tones is more consistent (see below), but I also really like the feel of the evening pictures.  Plus, I think it gives me an opportunity to show the different metals in different lights.

A similar set of rings, just photographed at different times (different metals and finishes as well).

I'm not really sure where I am going with this...I had the first two photographs and I just wanted to put them up on the blog and show the difference that a background can make.  And then I started meandering on and sort of ran out of steam.  Hehe.  Oh well.  And I'm not a photographer anyway, so I'm not sure how much more I could say on this topic.  You can't squeeze water from a stone.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

I'm so excited I can't even see straight

Dearest readers!  Now that some of the unpacking has been done and a little bit of painting, I'm starting to see the end of the move in sight.  Sort of.  We've painted the babies (baby's??) room a light grayish blue.  Still have the entire rest of the house to go.  At least the colors are decided on, except for the master bedroom.  And double bonus!  We found hardwood under the carpet on the stairs and in the nursery.  Hallelujah!  I have an extreme carpet phobia, so you can't know how thrilled I am to have wood floors throughout. 

But the real reason I am super stoked, beyond the great new house, double squid babies, giant park/yard etc. etc.?  Work starts on the the studio this next Monday!  (OMG!)  I think I've written before about how I've always dreamed about a backyard studio since childhood, with windows and shelves and a space!  Space!  Just for creative pursuits!  Now, I have really had that already, with the studio that I rent.  I love the space I have, but imagine a commute of only 20 steps?  So excited!  And with the twins on the way, it is even more important that I can comfortably work from home.  (At least that is what I tell myself when I start contemplating the expense of the remodel.  And besides, it will pay itself off in saved rent in a little over a year and a half.)

So here it is.  My tiny little cottage studio.  Not too bad from the outside.  Needs some landscaping help.  And a new door.  It has a door, but it is pretty beat. (Tiny pugs included for scale.  Building is around 11'x15'.)  What do you think of a bright new paint color on the exterior?  Right now it matches the house.

The inside has this strange divider wall that will be coming down.  It's not structural.

All of that work bench will be taken out as well.  (Weird divider wall to the right of the photo.)

 I think there will be semi-vaulted ceilings in the end.

They are going to add a window across from this one.

And this is the floor layout I am planning on (from above):

The door is directly bottom middle.  To the right is a sink. (A sink!  A sink! The apogee of my home studio ambitions!)  The walled off portion to the left will be where I put my jewelers work bench.  That is where I do the dirty polishing stuff, so I really wanted to keep it a bit separate from the rest of the studio.  The right hand counter will be my computer/businessy area.  On the left wall will be where I will set stones.  And the back wall will be wax carving and miscellaneous.  At least for now.  I can't really know how I will arrange things until I'm in there. 

Another view from through the right hand wall.  I plan on having storage cabinets interspersed underneath the counter throughout. 

I can't wait for it to be done!  Especially since this:

is only going to get harder to lug around in the coming months.  (You can see where I've been taping in preparation for painting.  This bathroom is going to be a bright island blue!)

Monday, July 9, 2012

Move-pocalypse now

Moving is the worst thing ever and I don't intend on doing it again for at least 10 years.  But at least the tiny pugs are enjoying their new kingdom:

Alas, I didn't take this photo, the shop monkey sent it to me earlier today.  I am not lounging around my new house, organizing my collection of tiny coffee mugs.  Instead, I am slaving away at work in the heat (which I have to admit, bothers me more as a pregnant lady than as a carefree 20 something).  But soon (maybe next month!!!!) my commute will be 40 feet or so.  Hallelujah!  I'll blog about the studio remodel soon.  Just need to get everything planned.

(On a babies related note, I had an appointment today and heard both heart beats, which was a nice reminder that I'm not getting fat for nothing. :-)

Thursday, July 5, 2012

No surprise here...

...I still love 18kt yellow gold. 

This set was for a lovely couple in Georgia.  But I sort of like the way they look paired together as a set:

I know that some people love delicate, airy jewelry.  And I do too, sometimes.  But I'm always afraid I will break it, or wear it out, or something else irrational.  Maybe that is why I am so attracted to a bigger chunky look?  (Or maybe it is because I have sasquatch hands?  And a delicate pavĂ©/filigree ring would look like lipstick on a pig? )

Moving day is this Sunday, my house is in total chaos.  And my mind feels the same.  I don't think I will be able to calm down until the move is over and the glasses are in the cupboard.  And really, I don't think it will be over until the home studio is finished and the studio move is over as well.  I am actually dreading that a bit more than the home move, to be honest.  Moving my workspace is just so stress inducing....trying to keep track of every little tool and all of the paper work.  And having ongoing work happening at the same time is Just. So. Stressful.  Especially at this time of year, when requests for express orders are at a high.  Ugh.  Anyway, I am just aiming to get through this weekend.  Send me your positive brain waves for an easy move. :-)