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MrsDragon.etsy.com


The Dragon's Wares

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Lately, I have been noticing just how much time everything I do for my etsy shop takes up each day. So I began thinking about what I could do to achieve the same results but without spending as much time each day.

One of the things that came up was the fact that I not only maintain a daily blog but then mirror the content over here by hand. It's just one of those little things that add up.

So, instead of manually copying the content, I set up and RSS feed for my blogger journal. If you would still like to follow along, you can either watch the RSS feed from your livejournal (just add mrsdragonsdens*) or you can bookmark my blogger site. Entries will continue daily. : )

*This was meant to be mrsdragonsden but I had a kitten on my lap/keyboard and that extra "s" snuck in there. Consider it a mark of character! : )
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Current Mood:
calm mixed
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Yesterday was the deadline for the Diary 2008 project. Eep! So I worked hard getting my final submission together. Luckily for me the digital aspect pretty much took care of itself--my scanner scans at 300 dpi (dots per inch?) and when you draw it to scale and scan at 300 dpi the pixels came out right. Whew!

The good news is that I finished and I feel great about being part of this. I am really excited to see how it turns out. : ) The bad news is that I think my dragonlings lose a lot when not colored. Plus I'm a bit afraid that I'm going to end up sandwiched between a bunch of really snazzy digital layouts and mine will look all hokey. : ( But chin up! That which doesn't kill you makes you stronger and all that.

I'm not sure when the books will be available, but rest assured I will keep you all posted as I get the information!

June 17th--Journal Submission


I also relisted this little guy with brand new pictures. Isn't he handsome?



The sleeping dragonlings are some of my favorites--they always look so very peaceful. Much like kittens and children, when asleep they look like they could do no wrong.
Current Mood:
happy happy
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http://sockdogs.etsy.com
http://sockcats.etsy.com

You may be aware that I like cats. (Given all the cute kitten pictures of late, I can't *imagine* how anyone would get that impression ; ) This stems from an undying love for cute, cuddly, soft things. When I was a child I had TONS of stuffed animals. Seriously, way to many. I still have a TV box full of just the ones I still can't bear to part with because they hold too many memories.

Which is why when I come across super cute plushies (as they are now called), I can't help but smile. And when I get to that age where everyone I know has children, I'm sure I shall be happily bestowing plushies for a multitude of birthdays and holidays.

And no one has cuter plushies than Stacey. Stacey runs two etsy shops: sockdogs and sockcats, and, as you might guess, each one focuses on sock animals--one for cats, one for dogs. Each one is lovingly crafted into a one of a kind friend. All animals come with their own collar, license, name, and story. (And since Stacey is a children's write and illustrator the stories are well thought out, innovative, and quirky--just like real pets' personalities.)

However, shopping with Stacey isn't just about the pure cute--it's also about the warm fuzzy feeling you get when you know that you are making a difference. The shops' profiles explain:

"a portion of every single adoption fee directly benefits the Humane Society of Greater Kansas City, as well as other no-kill shelters across the country. These one-of-a-kind, handmade designer plush are helping to raise both awareness of and funds for many deserving shelter animals."

One of my personal favorites is Chanticleer, the poker playing pup. His bright fur and baleful eyes beg to be hugged. He would make an excellent addition to a dog lover's collection or be just the thing to brighten up some drab shelf space (perhaps next to some poker chips?).



And if you are a household with split loyalties, perhaps right next to Chanticleer should be Mocha, a sweet little tabby with a taste for chocolate. Her rich brown strips would make excellent camouflage for hiding your chocolate stash from prying eyes!



One thing to be aware of if you are considering adopting one of these cute critters--these are not intended for children under 7 or for pets. These are meant to be gently loved and displayed as the works of art that they are. However, if you have some extra room in your heart and your home, these little animals would make an excellent addition.
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Current Mood:
sleepy sleepy
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I spent most of yesterday retaking dragonling pics. Now, a few weeks ago, when I retook pictures of a whole slew of my flower cards, I had also attempted to shoot the dragonling pins. Between the glare off the pins themselves and my lack of satisfaction with any of the backgrounds, I ended up with about 100 pictures and no progress.

So yesterday, I tackled it again--and 5 hours later-- success!!! (This is Airyn, she's currently up in the shop if you would like to see her likes and dislikes.)



I also realized something very interesting. I had been pretty disappointed with my last batch of photos and much more pleased with the set before that. I realized that the difference was the time of day I took the pictures. Now, what's odd about that is that I take all my pictures in a light box! But when it's light outside, I leave the window open and let the natural light come into the room too. Apparently, that makes enough of a difference in the quality of light to affect the quality of the photos. The lesson? ALWAYS reset the white balance before each shoot.

Now, some of you may remember how I wrote, last week, about going to the art stroll. Well, while there I found a gorgeous painting that I LOVED. However, not expecting to be buying paintings, I hadn't set aside any money and had to pass. However, my lovely Grandmother sent me a bit of birthday money right about the same time, so on Friday I called her up to see about purchasing the painting.

After a bit of a comedy of errors (I initially called the other artist at the booth), I eventually ended up at her house to pick up the painting, husband in tow. : ) We chatted for about an hour with her and her husband. She was complaining about not really having a marketplace for her works since a local restaurant (where she was selling) switched to smoking only and started bringing in a different kind of clientèle. So I told her about etsy!

I hope she signs up and it works out for her. Her works are beautiful and reasonably priced, especially considering that this one came already framed!

My Pretty!

When we got home from picking up the painting, I found a lovely box waiting for me. What was inside? An earring display!

A few months ago, I signed up for a "Spend $30 on Paypal and we'll give you $15 back" offer from Paypal. It looked legit and I knew I would have no problem spending $30 on Paypal in 2 or 3 months. Well, last week my $15 arrived! YAY! So I went onto Ebay and bought myself a rotating earring display. Of course, I don't actually SELL earrings, but I thought it would fit my little dragonlings just right.

Turns out I should have paid more attention to the measurements, since I can only fit one dragonling per row instead of two like I was hoping BUT it does get them up off the table. It also allows me to showcase each one (people don't have to dig) and cuts down on their wandering abilities (two dragonlings somehow up and disappeared during my last show). I'm really excited to try it out at the show in a few weeks!

Current Mood:
happy happy
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I have roughly a million things to say, but I keep blinking and hours keep passing. So until tomorrow, here's a pretty little card to look at!

Current Mood:
sleepy *yawn*
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Today, at lunch, I began work on my journal page for submission to Diary 2008. She needs them before July 1, so that gives me, um, a couple of days! Yipes.

Journal Sketch

So that certainly isn't the final design (the arrows and notes would be a nice touch, lol). But it gives you an idea what I'm thinking of. : ) I really need to look up what hard hats actually look like because right now I think they are wearing brim-less baseball caps. ^_^

It's funny how much my art training combines with my engineering training sometimes. I'm drawing this thinking "the composition needs something over here to balance it out" right after "Is that pulley placed properly to give him the mechanical advantage he needs?". Hehe.

In other news for the day...

A new card! (In a very pretty shade of green. Mmmm. Green.)



The world's cutest kittens evah! (Look at the tongue!Awww!^_^)

Furbabies!

It's Thursday! That means Self Portrait Thursday. So here we go...my toes! Taken by yours truly. : )

SPT 6-28
Current Mood:
content content
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Like many other artists, I am continually in awe of the world around me. My engineering training means I find hours of entertainment in studying manufactured objects as well as the natural world. And a flirtation with the idea of being a graphic designer means beautiful, well designed ads strike my fancy.

Colors, patterns, shapes, textures. If they make me pause, make me want to hold on a little while longer, then my magpie instinct kicks in and I want to horde them. Keeping that little bit of brilliance bumping around in my brain until it gets spit back out, in a new form on some future project.

Luckily for me my husband is very understanding of these little love affairs because I go a bit stupid when infatuated. He and I will be mid conversation when I will stop mid-sentence and STARE at some random color/ad/picture/texture that caught my eye. And then I gibber about it. "Oh my god, look at that ________________!" At which point, I usually catch myself and we can return to our regularly scheduled conversation. Have I mentioned that I am a useless conversationalist while shopping?

(True confession: I hang onto the shopping cart while grocery shopping with my husband so I don't wander off chasing after something shiny and lose him.)

Anyway, the most recent of these little temptations appeared last weekend as I was cleaning up for our guest. I was putting magazines away (which of course means flipping through them) and talking to my hubby. All the sudden I lose track of what we were talking about and go "OOOOOHHHH! Look at this!" and shove the magazine under my hubby's nose.

The culprit? A beautiful print ad for razors. Done in gorgeous glowing shades of yellow (this picture doesn't come close to doing it justice) with sleek, organic, curvaceous legs contrasting with the sharply geometric "science-y looking lines" (trust me, they don't mean a darn thing, they just look cool)imprinted over them.

Just cover up the copy in the bottom right corner and look at the design work. It's not the most original idea under the sun, but it is beautifully implemented, with full rich colors and a light touch.

It's things like that that make me want to run straight to my crafting supplies and create, create, create!

Inspiration

And, on a totally unrelated note--there is a new card, with a new saying up in my shop! This saying was too perfect to resist--so I didn't! : )

"If I had a single flower for every time I think about you, I could walk forever in my garden. Claudia Ghandi"

I'm a sucker for "thinking of you" type cards because, let's face it, while well intentioned my cards have a way of showing up very very late. Oh, I buy them early, but the sending on time is still eluding me. So until I manage to get the timing down just so I adore cards like these. Because they are for no occasion at all, it is never "too late" to send them! Besides, everyone likes "just because" mail. It's so much more fun than the endless parade of junkmail and important mail disguised as junk mail. (Am I the only one who finds really important things they thought they never received while shredding junk mail? UGH!).

Current Mood:
sleepy sleepy
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http://Lillan.etsy.com

One thing that browsing etsy has taught me is that I am drawn to art of certain things. Draw, paint, collage, gocco, letterpress, screenprint, carve, or otherwise depict a tree and my attention is all yours. While it's a little depressing to discover that my list of like usually coincides with that is "hot", I think I'll just pretend that I'm always leading the crowd, not following it. ; ) (Although that is probably a catch-22 worth of it's own post). The good news about liking what's currently the in thing is that choices abound. Big trees, little trees. Trees of every color, shape, size, material, and level of representationalism abound.

Every so often though I find a seller who doesn't just offer a single beautiful tree, but a whole forest of them. Lillan's shop is exactly such a store. And the longer I looked, the more attached I became. Her trees demonstrate a gorgeous mastery of linework, hand-drawn in black ink and colored with washes of watercolors. Add to this adept calligraphy and Lillan has my rapt attention.

While the original pieces that I was enthralled by have long since been sent off to happy homes, this duo is equally exquisite. In an artistic decision that allows the color to be rich and vibrant and the linework to still be the star, the color stops several inches short of the edge of the canvas while the trees continue on, their branches wrapping around the edges of the canvas. This particular piece would make an inspired wedding gift, sentimental without being overtly "mushy".



Once I pulled my head out of the trees and looked around the rest of her shop, I was equally enamored. Solemn little girls drawn and painted with the same detail and tenderness as the trees make appearances in many prints and paintings.

My favorite is shown below. Many artists, struck with a similar idea would take this in a very different direction. Think over the top cutsey with big flowers, loads of pink, and big cheerful smile. Lillan, however, makes her plant-girl hybrid all the more real by showing her as contemplative and a bit wistful. Her hair is not perfectly coifed, a few stray wisps dance out and she looks like she will soon shift positions because her arms are sore. I find the print soothing. You could spend idle hours just watching her grow (you can almost see her growing can't you?) wondering what she is thinking about.

The package in the lower left hand corner shows a glimpse of Lillan's beautiful calligraphy (as does the watermark). While it is not a main focus in this piece, the careful print adds a bit of our world to this fantasy.



Lillan builds a powerful, peaceful world through her captivating art. And with affordable pricing, even for original works, everyone can bring a bit of that magical world into their own home.
Tags:
Current Mood:
content content
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http://Lillan.etsy.com

One thing that browsing etsy has taught me is that I am drawn to art of certain things. Draw, paint, collage, gocco, letterpress, screenprint, carve, or otherwise depict a tree and my attention is all yours. While it's a little depressing to discover that my list of like usually coincides with that is "hot", I think I'll just pretend that I'm always leading the crowd, not following it. ; ) (Although that is probably a catch-22 worth of it's own post). The good news about liking what's currently the in thing is that choices abound. Big trees, little trees. Trees of every color, shape, size, material, and level of representationalism abound.

Every so often though I find a seller who doesn't just offer a single beautiful tree, but a whole forest of them. Lillan's shop is exactly such a store. And the longer I looked, the more attached I became. Her trees demonstrate a gorgeous mastery of linework, hand-drawn in black ink and colored with washes of watercolors. Add to this adept calligraphy and Lillan has my rapt attention.

While the original pieces that I was enthralled by have long since been sent off to happy homes, this duo is equally exquisite. In an artistic decision that allows the color to be rich and vibrant and the linework to still be the star, the color stops several inches short of the edge of the canvas while the trees continue on, their branches wrapping around the edges of the canvas. This particular piece would make an inspired wedding gift, sentimental without being overtly "mushy".



Once I pulled my head out of the trees and looked around the rest of her shop, I was equally enamored. Solemn little girls drawn and painted with the same detail and tenderness as the trees make appearances in many prints and paintings.

My favorite is shown below. Many artists, struck with a similar idea would take this in a very different direction. Think over the top cutsey with big flowers, loads of pink, and big cheerful smile. Lillan, however, makes her plant-girl hybrid all the more real by showing her as contemplative and a bit wistful. Her hair is not perfectly coifed, a few stray wisps dance out and she looks like she will soon shift positions because her arms are sore. I find the print soothing. You could spend idle hours just watching her grow (you can almost see her growing can't you?) wondering what she is thinking about.

The package in the lower left hand corner shows a glimpse of Lillan's beautiful calligraphy (as does the watermark). While it is not a main focus in this piece, the careful print adds a bit of our world to this fantasy.



Lillan builds a powerful, peaceful world through her art works. And with affordable pricing, even for original works, everyone can bring a bit of that magical world into their own home.
Tags:
Current Mood:
content content
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No post yesterday because I passed out asleep without intending to (oops!). Late post today because today we had a guest over!

To keep this short and sweet (so I can get to bed!), today I:

Listed this card!



Made lasagna!



Cleaned house! (Many, many more pictures on my flickr account, click on the image to be taken there)



Hung out with my hubby and a new friend!



Marveled at our adorable kittens!



Whew! What a day! : )
Current Mood:
sleepy sleepy
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