Thursday, August 28, 2014

links to our Photographing your Jewelry Demo at the IPCA Retreat in Columbus

For those of you who've wandered over here from looking for information on my demo on Photographing Your Jewelry as presented at the IPCA retreat in Columbus last week,  here are my links.
The set up we demo’ed on was purchased from Doug Baldwin at , and as Beth and I indicated, if you ever get a chance to take a live class with him, go for it. Purchase information on his lightboxes is  at the bottom of the page.
The software that I normally use is Corel’s Paintshop Pro X6. They’ve just released version X7, and I’ll be waiting until the price drops a bit, but at $79, it’s still quite a bit less than Adobe’s full version. They're offering a free trial at
Other photography sites that I mentioned included:
Digital Camera Tips for Photographing Jewelry © by Rena Klingenberg
LIGHTING:How to Photograph Jewelry
Table Top Studio: Jewelry Photography
MK Digital – how to photograph Jewelry- Jewelry Photography tips
Focus Stacking And Bracketing Technique For Marco Jewelry Photography
For Cell Phone photography:
Shoot to Sell: Taking Better Photos for eBay, Etsy & Instructables
the Etsy Blog-Top Tips for Smartphone Photography

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Bad Blogger!
So, there's been this little voice grumbling at the back of my head for the longest time, since my last post, muttering  "Bad Blogger! Bad Blogger!" and I have been. I suppose I can blame it on my crazy life and a serious case of bloggers' block, but I haven't felt like I've had anything to celebrate or write about since I started house hunting back before I retired.

The search for my new home consumed most of my energy outside of my work life - trips back and forth between New England and  the Mid-Atlantic became the norm rather than something to look forward to- the drive has become something I can almost do on auto pilot now. What does it say when the gas station attendants at the Joyce Kilmer rest stop on the New Jersey Turnpike ask where Belle is if she isn't sitting in my lap when I give them my credit card (for those of you who don't know, in New Jersey, you can't pump your own gas, an attendant has to do it)?

So after some starts and stops, having to deal with an unscrupulous seller's realtor who caused me to lose out on two units I would have bought, I finally found what I was looking for, more or less-  a two bedroom , two bath condo with a sun room and a screened in porch  that doesn't require me to walk up stairs in a town where many of my cousins live just far enough outside the Beltway that it's still almost an agrarian community. Except I'm within walking distance to great shopping malls..and there's a Wegman's less than 5 miles away. While I don't see horses in my back yard down there as I do up in New England, when the leaves are off the trees, I can watch herds of deer, the occasional fox and flocks of turkeys wandering around from my aerie, as I fondly call my screened in-porch (which Belle adores).

Of course, there are some flies in the ointment. First and foremost is that it's taking me forever to get the house in New England cleaned out, packed up and ready to sell-and it cost more to do it than I anticipated. New roof, doors and windows, painting inside and out, and I'm keeping my fingers crossed on the septic inspection. My handyman has been a trooper. Then there was the major set back in January.  While I was down "south", someone kicked in my doors up in New England during a power failure, going through 3 deadbolts, and helped themselves to my jewelry and jewelry making supplies and tools. It took me until April to really get past that mentally and get back on track with the packing. Downsizing from a 4 bedroom house to two , with no basement in the new place, and no obvious location for a new studio has made "making" difficult. My new home town doesn't seem to have surplus mill that would make a perfect studio like my old home town does, so I've been searching for a place to set up my kilns and glass-metals-polymer clay studio for over a year now.

Once the jewelry supplies departed with the thief and the rest of the studio got packed up and moved into storage, my creative side ground to a halt. and now, most of my books are either down south or in someone else's home. I've given away close to 5000 paperbacks and hard covers to the library and tossed over 100 accounting textbooks and references. The stained glass is slowly getting wrapped and moved. what an ordeal that is.

I'd like to have the New England house on the market by the end of September/beginning of October, which means probably one more pod south and into storage- mostly glass and boxes of craft supplies from the basement and den-studio. I've done a lot of running around since April, beginning with a trip to Malta and once my August jaunts are done, that's it. I need to buckle down and get to work. seriously.

so ,what I've decided is that I'm going to do a weekly pictorial journal of the New England house and how it's emptying. maybe that will keep me moving. side by sides of various rooms. befores and afters of the train wrecks . Because as anyone who has ever moved knows, once you start packing in a room, it becomes a horrific mess. and I've emptied this house basically by myself. with very little help from anyone. 4 generations worth of "stuff" from both sides of my family. tax returns. medical records. bank statement. shredding up the wazoo.old family pictures that I've scanned and sent on to family around the country. it all takes time. Mom's bedroom is empty and I've turned it into my office. It's got a great view of the back yard, it's cool in the summer and warm in the winter, and I can sit in my jammies and work without worrying about anyone seeing me from the street.That's where the scanning and bookkeeping takes place now.  and the websurfing- looking for new ideas. Which I was doing yesterday and I found an amazing multimedia artist  out of North Carolina, Amy Flynn and her "FOBOTS"

These little guys are amazing. She whips them up out of old spice cans, erector sets,  kitchen utensils , car parts and who knows what else and they are the most clever things imaginable.I mean how cute is Rocky and his friend? If you're in  the Bay area, you can catch Amy, along with my polymer clay friends, Ford and Forlano, at Fort Mason August 8-10 at the ACC show .Either of them will make it well worth your trip.

so back to my procrastination.... Saturday you'll see the before and hopefully the after of my dining room. fingers crossed.
and once a week hereafter, another room in its pristineness. well, the basement may be in sectors, because it's big,,,and it's bad,,, and it's dark and scary..... and Yes, Suki and Eddie, I know you don't believe me but I really am selling the house and moving! Honestly, I am!