Friday, October 23, 2015


Hello! First, the Indianapolis city guide is up and you can see it here. They included a lot of my photos. See if you can find me (I'm in a reflection, oops).

 Now, on to Halloween.
Eyeball plant stakes

I'm/we're doing a sci fi theme this year with monster plants. I have a small container garden's worth of faux potted plants and an assortment of plant stakes to enhance the live plants already present. This idea came along because I saw a great DIY from the prop master of Home and Family and I am a plant hoarder year round so it goes well with what's already on hand.

The image above is some of the stakes stuck in a rosemary plant. The stakes are easy and minimal. I used sticks from the yard, spray paint, 1.5" styrofoam balls, spackle, acrylic paint, and gloss coating. Find some sticks and paint them green. water down some spackle and coat the foam balls, allow to dry overnight. Spray them with white paint. Then I painted they eye with acrylic paints. I made a circle and watered down the paint in the center to create a darker outer ring. Once that dried a bit, I used the end of a paintbrush dipped in black to make the pupil. Then I let that dry and sprayed them with a few coats of gloss. After the gloss dried, I used a glue gun to attach the eye to sticks. On the first ones I added leaves and green fringe, but I decided I liked the minimal look best. Drying is slow, but assembly is quick so this project offered some instant gratification and that was nice after making larger carnivorous plants.

Here are the foam balls drying. I have a fancy system of discarded packaging and toothpicks.

This photo shows some of the process and that my cat is very helpful. I put the balls on toothpicks before coating them and stuck them in some packaging to stay upright while drying. I also kept them this way to while painting. I removed the toothpicks when it was time to assemble everything.

I'll have some more prop photos and DIY's after proper pictures are taken. If you would like some inspiration, try these sites:

There is still so much to do... make plant slime, sew a costume, paint more eyeballs, set up lights, etc.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Cyanotype Tutorial

The photo print shirt tutorial is available now through the link above.


Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Goodbye to the Best Boy Ever

Holding hands
This fuzzy little man crossed the Rainbow Bridge yesterday. It was very early in the morning and we were with him when it happened. He lived to be over 19 years old and during his last week he had lots of cuddles, scratchies, porch naps, and cheese. I think he was a happy little man. We met when he was 6 years old and spent the next 13 years together. He was very vocal, loving, and demanding. He was really great at training humans.
I had never actually seen anything die before and it simply wasn't peaceful the way it's always portrayed in movies. It was terrible to see, but I am glad we were with him. We held him and talked to him until he completely let go.
I miss my little spoon, cuddle buddy, companion. He got up with me in the morning, greeted me when I came home, went outside when I went outside, and went to bed on my chest every night. The house is quiet now. No one is begging for cheese or lying under my feet. It's sort of lonely and strange.
I know he was just a cat, but I miss my little fuzzy man.

Nest making while waiting on me to finish taking a bath.

Taco night
I love you Whiskey Kitty.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Milk Paint Party Cones

I just submitted a tutorial to Cut Out + Keep. I will let you know when it is available. For now, here are some pictures...


Thursday, June 18, 2015

Cyanotype Photo Printing

Hello! I just finished reviewing a Jacquard Cyanotype Set. That means that I got a sheet of instructions and 2 black bottles of dust. The instructions provided were concise, but included links to a website that had more information and helpful tools. I've been interested in "blue printing" for a long time, but I've never had any experience with it until now. The only thing I think I've ever seen are those sun sheets that come pre-treated. My daughter did those at summer camp one year.

Anyway, I got the set and I was intimidated, but excited. So I started working on all my pre-print stuff like picking an item to make, deciding what kind of image, etc. I'm not going to go over the whole thing here because it will be up on Cut Out + Keep, but there was an emotional craft fail along the way and I changed the original project. Initially I was trying to do a men's shirt refashion and that just did not happen. I am still planning to do the refashion at some point, but I'm not sure if it's the right item to combine with a cyanotype print.

I had a minor craft-tastrophe followed by crafter's remorse and then I pulled it together. I took some time to think, salvage my work, and move forward. Beyond all that though, this is a process that I think should be explored more. I've thought of a lot of possibilities for cyanotype printing, most of which would require greater skill with the process than I currently possess.

Unfinished panel from the tutorial

Test Samples


The first print that I exposed was large and once it was processed, I discovered a lot of mistakes. After I looked at the first exposure, I started over, but I added test pieces to experiment with. I discovered that smaller pieces of fabric were definitely easier to work with. That probably should have been obvious, but some how it wasn't. I was much happier with my test pieces than I had been with the first attempt I made. I have some more fabric cut and treated so I think I am going to back to those eventually and see if I can correct the first mistakes.

In the lace print example above I used decorative packing tape. I would like to make a pattern using this and find some other prints. I'm thinking I could also use painter's tape and create a striped pattern. The palm print is from a section of the photo negative I used in the first exposure. I wanted to make sure that the problems I saw in the image had to do with the way I had coated the fabric and not because I had a bad negative.

This photo is of the samples again, but also includes a piece of fabric that some of the mixture dribbled on. I was looking at the "water mark" on the fabric and started thinking that the chemicals could be used to create a gradient painting or even a tie dye type of print. I am not a painter, but my husband is so I'm thinking I'll give him what I have left of the sensitizer so he can experiment.

So what do you think? Have you tried any of the other uses I've suggested? 

sun exposed

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

My daughter the foodie...

A week or two ago I realized something about my daughter; I figured out what her hobby is. Of course she dances, but I don't really consider that a hobby for her, it's more of a lifestyle/passion. I think those can be different things. I guess I think of hobbies as something more casually approached; the excitement is the same, but the pursuit is a little more laid back. I determined that she is a foodie. Technically I stated that her hobby is the pursuit and photography of boutique food experiences, but I think most people refer to that as being a "foodie". I felt that my description better explained the activity, but to simplify I suppose I'll use the term that was given back to me when I came up with my observation.
We had a variety of food adventures last week, from food truck night at the park to a new cafe called The Garden Table, it was pretty great. We even celebrated National Doughnut Day with a visit to General American Donut Company. So many food adventures and her camera was with her at every one of them (sometimes more than one camera).
The habit in action at General American Donut Company.
Food truck Thursday with The Flying Cupcake.
Saturday morning at The Garden Table.
Acai bowl at The Garden Table.
The lady loves food. It makes her happy. She also loves photography and nutrition. She's been this way since she was tiny (not so much with nutrition, but eating and taking pictures has always been a big thing). So here is to clear cut, well defined interests and unique hobbies. I'm not sure I'd know what to do if it were any other way. If she weren't like this I might never leave the house (#shemakesmeleavethehouse). You can follow along with her adventures on Instagram. Her feed is like a highlight reel of sites around Indianapolis.
"The Fault in Our Food Coma"
I've taken to documenting the whole thing. Her friends describe my Instagram feed as the "behind the scenes" of her's. I've explained to her that:
1. I am photo documenting her life.
2. This is my contribution to photo journalism.
I think we work well together.