Thursday, June 25, 2009

Nancy's garden

While we were visiting for Father's Day, I snagged the photos I'd taken with my mother-in-law's Rebel back on Mother's Day. Here are some of my favorite shots from her garden.

Nancy's Garden - 1

Nancy's Garden - 2

Nancy's Garden - 3

Nancy's Garden - 4
(Don't worry, he's a teeny little guy.)

I've also been tossing around a few more names for the paisley pattern....
Paisley Plethora
Persnickety Paisley
Paisley Parade
Paisley Promenade

So many options! I need to just pick something and stick with it ;)

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Paisley Pattern, Updated

You may remember the paisley pattern I posted last month. As soon as I 'finished' it, I realized that I had set the measurements based on the size of the too-small screens that I already had, figuring I would have to make do with those. I couldn't simply re-size it for my new screens, the ratio was all off.

So, I had to pull the thing apart and get back to work on it, fixing the repeat and filling in a lot of empty area. But, I think I like the result even better, and now it is all ready to print 1/4 yard at a time like I wanted from the start. To get a size of scale, the image below will be about a full yard.

Paisley Pattern Update

But I still can't settle on a name! I thought I had made a decision, but then my mind flits to other options. Here are a few I've been pondering today...

Vote on the name ideas here

I'd like to stick with the alliteration to give the names a theme, but perhaps I need to drop the 'paisley' idea. I hate naming things!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Ambigram Drop

"Michelle" Ambigram

"Michelle" Ambigram


"CatoStyle" Ambigram

"CatoStyle" Ambigram


"Julija" & "Daniel" Ambigram

"Julija" & "Daniel" Ambigram


"TDM" Ambigram

"TDM" Ambigram


"Bradin" Ambigram

"Bradin" Ambigram


"Till Death" & "Do Us Part" Ambigram
(To be wrapped around their current tattoo
of the "Schade" & "Taylor" ambigram.)

"Till Death" & "Do Us Part" Ambigram


"Bria", "Devid", & "Rennie" Ambigram

"Bria", "Devid", & "Rennie" Ambigram


"Est. in Decatur" Ambigram

"Est. in Decatur" Ambigram


"Carpe Diem" Ambigram

"Carpe Diem" Ambigram

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Learning the Kanji



I forgot to mention that I am now the happy owner of my own Remebering the Kanji! We were actually able to trade in a bunch of Starbucks gift cards of Justin's (neither of us drink coffee) at Plastic Jungle for some Amazon credit. The book arrived Thursday and I've been studying like crazy. (Justin is worried about me) ;)

For a little update on my progress since Christmas ~ The free online sample of RtK, which I had gone through before, goes up to kanji #276. Now I've nearly doubled that amount at about #475. I want to get through the other 1500+ kanji as quick as possible, so until it's done I'm going to hold off on learning new vocabulary and just review the sentences I've already learned. So far I've learned about 375 sentences, each of those with one or two new vocabulary words. Of course, other than that, I still can't understand a darn thing.

I know a few other girls were interested in starting, or maybe had already been learning some Japanese. How is it going? I'd love to hear updates.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Objects next to cat are larger than they appear

New Custom Build Screens

Woohoo! Yesterday we went to pick up my new, custom built screens. The abnormally large cat doesn't really give you a good size of scale, they are pretty large at 27" x 31". And they ended up being about $7 less per screen than the original quote, $20 less overall. I wasn't going to question it!

Now I need to pick up a giant pack of printable transparencies, some nice varnish to waterproof the wood, and some black posterboard to help block the light before I can burn the patterns on the new screens. This week we might need to spend more time preparing for Father's Day and a wedding than screen printing, but it's one step closer!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Ambigram Drop


"Jack" & "Patty" Ambigram

"Jack" & "Patty" Ambigram


"Nathan" & "Michael" Ambigram

"Nathan" & "Michael" Ambigram


"Lucas" & "Tyra" Ambigram

"Lucas" & "Tyra" Ambigram


"Patrick" Ambigram v.4

"Patrick" Ambigram v.4


"ielahiah" Ambigram

"ielahiah" Ambigram


"Chances" Ambigram

"Chances" Ambigram


"Martin" & "Philisa" Circle Ambigram v.1

"Martin" & "Philisa" Circle Ambigram v.1


"Martin" & "Philisa" Circle Ambigram v.2

"Martin" & "Philisa" Circle Ambigram v.2

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Wait, that doesn't say anything upside down...

I've had a lot of non-ambigram requests lately. The hearts have been pretty popular!


"KJF" Daisy Design
(The initials KJF are hidden in the leaves & stem)

"KJF" Daisy


"E&K" Heart Design

"E&K" Heart Design


"C&V" Heart Design

"C&V" Heart Design


"TWM" Heart Design

"TWM" Heart Design


"Simply Martine" Design
Created as a logo for a perfume company.

"Simply Martine" Logo

Monday, June 8, 2009

Beat the heat

I'm still a bit in shock about all of the orders and emails that have been pouring in this week & last. For this week I have 10 orders to create, when my ideal number is 5. Mondays are usually my busiest emailing day since I stopped answering them during the weekend, but this morning was a new record. I had about a dozen emails about brand new orders, and just about as many from current customers or people still working out the details.

Hopefully things will slow down a little in the coming weeks, because in a few days I'll be placing an order for my new large & lovely screens! But for now I'm sweltering in the workroom, which is always the hottest room in the house. Moving didn't even fix that! Cold, crispy grapes anyone?

Cold, Crispy Grapes

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Super Squeegee

I can't believe I let almost two weeks slip by without a post!

My camera is partially to blame for the absence, because it now seems to be incapable of taking any close-up shots, no matter the setting. I've had to throw out most of my recent photos because of it. I'm hoping for the best, but this could be a big problem if it keeps up.

After a few slow weeks of orders, I've suddenly been bombarded with an insane number of emails. I expected ambigrams to get a little more popular with the release of the Angels & Demons movie (the book is what introduced most people to ambigrams), but the week after the release was completely dead. Things certainly seem to be picking up now, though!

And luckily I have the extra time, because I'm going to be on a screen printing hiatus for a while. I have four more screens left from the pack of 6 that ended up being too small. I've used two of the screens, divided in half, for the smaller prints you've seen around the blog. The tiny size was fine for learning how to burn and print the patterns, but it's way too much work to keep trying to print at that size. I was planning on moving up to the full screens for the rest, making do with the wrong size the best I could, but then I realized...

After I burn those screens with 4 patterns, it will be time to buy more. And once I have the larger size I thought I was buying to begin with, I'll want to move all of those patterns over to the larger size too. So instead of ending up with 4 wasted smaller screens, I'm going to try to sell them and put the money towards the larger size. Finding boxes the right size for shipping them has been impossible, and it looks like I'll either have to build some myself, or else give Craigslist a try (I've never sold on there before so I'd love some info and/or advice).

Unfortunately, there is quite a price jump between the sizes, and after hours & hours of research, I realized I really need them to be a few inches bigger than I had originally planned, and I need to get the screens custom made for the size I want. I found someone about half an hour away who can make them for me, as many or few as I want, so I won't have to deal with ordering 6 at once or paying insane shipping fees, but they will still cost twice as much as my current ones.

I am making a little progress at least. Let me introduce you to my new gigantic squeegee!

Super Squeegee

This thing is 22" long and *huge*. It's so big, it seems to be begging for a name like 'Excalibur', or something similar. Notice how much bigger it is than my current screens? Add another inch to each end, and that will be the width of the new ones.