Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Simple Cards - July 2015

 Last night was a marathon of card designing and prepping. I usually don't wait until the last minute to put my card kits together for my class down here at the Senior Center. I had my stretches done and sort of knew what I was going to do.  I decided  to have "Witches of East End" season 2 playing in the background for little noise. So I was all set.
The cards have to be simple enough to do in an hour. The wreath card took over 2 hours  to prep because the die wasn't cutting right. I used every trick in the book to make it work (wax paper, dryer sheets, shims) but only 1 out of 5 cut cleanly. 
I started at 5:30 and finished everything at 11:30. My reward was to be able to clean up the kitchen (really bugs me to have a sink full of dirty dishes) which I wasn't letting distract me from my card prep. 
Annie of course missed her evening walk but she did get to go out and bark at something that was to close to the property line for several minutes which always makes her happy.
For Obon 2015
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Friday, July 17, 2015

Santa Fe International Folk Art Market 2015

Ukrainian Eggs, Gourds - Peru & Mexico, Oil drum art - Africa
Some of the things I got at the Santa Fe International Folk Art Market this past weekend. I think you can tell I really like gourd art. The detail of the work always amazes me! I picked up a gourd made into a purse that looks like an owl. My buddy Patty said "that's going to be one of the things when your kids are clean out your house after you die and wonder, what the hell were you thinking?" I plan to use it as a storage piece and not as a purse. I think it's cute.
The  pysanky Ukrainian eggs are totally amazing  too!
I picked up a few for Christmas gifts for my super crafty friends. 
Overall the market was fun and I'm glad I went. Since I've traveled a lot to third world countries, I've seen most of the folk art that was there but it was still great to be able to support the work of these artists and the mission of the Folk Art Market.

Santa Fe 2015

My trip to Santa Fe this past weekend was sort of a spur of the moment trip. There were some things done ahead of time since I was meeting one of my good buddies from Portland there. Hotel, airfare and event tickets were all done months ago but everything else was decided when we got there. Back in the day I would plan everything out to the minute but now that I'm older and travel more, it doesn't bug me not to know what the day plans are.
Shopping is a big thing in Santa Fe, a really big thing! The photos above are just the things I got in town before I even set foot in the Santa Fe International Folk Art Market, which we flew out to visit. My big splurge was buying a  silver pendent and cuff bracelet made by Alexander Sanchez, a young Navajo artist. The turquoise beads are from the Sleeping Beauty turquoise mine that closes two years ago. All the symbols on the pendent mean something, but heck if I can remember them all. :)
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Monday, July 13, 2015

International Folk Art Market - Santa Fe 2015 -Tips

I just got back from the 2015 International Folk Art market in Santa Fe New Mexico. If you're like me, you search the internet for insider tips on what to do when going to someplace new. While sitting in the airport for days  because of flight delays forcing an extra over night stay.Who knew NM had a monsoon season! I was able to jot down some helpful tips while things were still fresh in my mind. 
1) I did the early bird (ticket was $75) which was a good idea. The market gets packed along with getting hot - not a good combo. That extra 2 hours makes a big difference. There is a Friday night event ($200) if you really want to make sure you get to the good stuff before anyone else. Plan to be there late (11:00 pm?), because the check out will take a long time.
2) Get your hands on a program ahead of time. I was told it was in the local paper on Wednesday. We weren't able to find one, so we went in blind. It's helpful if there is something specific you want to see. The artists are all mixed together, so if you like Mexican art you have to know where that artist is. 
3) Sun screen and a hat is a must. All the vendors are under  tents but you do spend a lot of time in the sun walking from section to section.
4) If you see something you like, buy it! Don't even think you will go back to get it. In less than two hours the place will be packed tighter than a can of sardines!
5) The artists are on the inside of the tents and their handlers were on the outside - volunteers who help the artists handle their sales.
6) When you want to buy something you take it to the volunteers opposite the artist's booth. They will write a receipt (triplicate copies) and bag the item to keep there until you've paid.
7) You take the receipt up to the central cashiers (they are located at the end of each section) and pay for the item,then go back to the artist to pick it up. I found walking along the outside of the tents behind the volunteers made it easier to pick up my stuff.
8) I  also found it faster to pay for everything I wanted in one section before going on the next one. This year there was a 3 hour time limit to pick up your stuff other wise it was put back out.  Doing it our way, we were able to get through the whole place under 3 hours. Yes you will have a lot of credit card charges but it's worth it, trust me!
9) They have write your name on your receipt so I started using a easy name to spell "Smith" which saved a lot of time.
Since they file everything they bag by your last name, use an easy to spell last name that starts with "A" or "Z". The volunteers will be able to find your bag faster. Always give them your correct cell phone number. They had to call us on one item they forgot to list the price on the receipt.
10) Bathrooms in the museums are much nicer than the portapottys. The Mexican museum bathrooms up the hill wasn't too busy.
11)Remember everyone working there is a volunteer so be patience. All the volunteers were very happy and always had a smile on their faces.
12) This isn't a market where your going to find any "deals". All the items are at current US retail prices, if not higher but 90% is going directly to the artists, which I liked. If you had a chance to read the program a head of time, you will know what the money is supporting and how.
13) I would skip eating lunch there, the food was just OK. At lunch time the lines got crazy long and again you're standing out in the full sun.
14) Be prepared to stand in the sun for a long time waiting for the shuttle bus to take you back.
15) This is no place for young children, strollers or husbands who don't really want to be there. It's a very safe place to shop. I believe there is a sitting area for the husbands to sit. If you really have to bring you children, Sunday is family day it's not as crowded and it's cheaper to get in.
16) I was told on Sunday afternoon, things may get marked down but I would guess it's only the big bulky items. 

I think you would find it fun and interesting if you haven't traveled much around the world. Seeing everything in one place if great! I also like mission of this group and the artists they're helping. 

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Bird of Paradise - Mom

Related Posts with ThumbnailsThe bird of paradise was my mom's favorite flower. I had hopes of getting a cutting from the one at my parent's home (planted 45 years ago) before it was sold. Sadly the plant was ripped out before I could get there. The clean up crew who worked on my parent's backyard were really good and super fast. Still when I see this flower, I always think of my mom.

Annie and I ran errands this morning with one of the stops being the pet store. It's a mom and pop place and it welcomes big dogs. As we drove up I saw a lot of people with cat carriers walking in. Today was bunny toe nail clipping day. Along with all the bunnies, the Bunny Haven rescue group was outside doing a fundraiser selling items bunny volunteers had made.
I picked up these potholders for a friend who loves bunnies. I've always been a sucker for Redwork, something I hope one day learn to do. 
It was a super quick trip into the store as Annie only knows about the wild bunnies around our house. She does like a good bunny chase.
Fundraiser for Bunny Haven Rescue

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Black and White Test Shots - Miss Annie

Related Posts with ThumbnailsAs our new ED is settling in at work, there are a whole lot of changes going on! One of the changes the big boss is making, is to reformat our newsletter. I do have to say it's very old school looking not to mention it costs a ton to print and mail. 
We have to reduce the number of random candid shots, which are always hard to see. This should help to reduce the number of pages printed. To help make things clearer, I have to learn to take more pics in black and white. It's been over 10 years since I used a real camera. I do everything with my cell phone now. I have no idea what mono, toner and noir mean on my iPhone. I did some practice shots with Annie, who for once sat still. I may be force to start using a digital camera (meaning I have to buy a new one) if I can't good shots with my phone. I'm pretty good at staging a shot so it matches the story, no learning curve there.