Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Wednesday's Llama...

Happy Wednesday!  Today I'm basking in the completed status of a custom order.  This was a tough one, and I'm so glad my customer is happy with it, whew! Also, school is almost over for the semester, and I'm really going to be relieved after I take my final next week.  I can't believe it's almost done, my first term back after my last five-year absence from higher education... ;)

Well, this morning I wanted to share my favorite piece from the custom order, which turned out to be this llama pendant (accent beads are also in the shot):

I think he's just the cutest, and he's gotten some pretty good feedback from those who saw him prior to making the cross-country voyage via USPS, what do you think?

Along similar lines, I came across this alpaca-felted soap this morning, and wondered if anyone I know has actually used such a kind of soap?  If so, comment so I can know if it's a good gift jujee! :)
Have a great Wednesday!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Halloween Collection on ArtFire: Spooky Fun!

Happy Halloween weekend! I don't celebrate much, and when I do it's mostly because of the candy, but nevertheless: Happy Halloween :) I figured this ArtFire collection (with my goofy skull spider!) would be a good treat for you, and it's the most I can do while I take a break from my math homework (college is hard!).  Although it's a spider, I'm told that he's still pretty cute and not very threatening-looking, so if you like cute spooky, you'll like this.  Without further ado:

Thursday, September 1, 2011

First September Glass!

Birthday month, woohoo!  OK, so this is a very busy month at the Shepherd residence...
The highlights of this month's journey:
  • School started for me again!  My latest foray back into college to finish my BS...  Apparently two Associate degrees don't equal one BS.. O_o  Go figure?
  • The new position is finally open at work.  It's been a topic of discussion for over a year, and now it's almost interview time... Nervous about that, as I was on an interview panel a few times in the past year and know how nervous the applicants can be.  Wish me luck when the time comes, ok? :)
  • My birthday is coming!  Paul and I love our birthdays, because we celebrate Birthday Week as a concentrated week of a few special meals, maybe a picnic or two, hike, botanic garden trip, etc.  My week = my choice, mwahahahaha!
  • Preparation for the Holiday Season - oh yeah, you know we still make glass goodies? :)  I've made some cool new pieces recently shown below.  They are basically my last fit of freedom from last weekend before classes started on Tuesday.  The glass will have to take a backseat to these other more permanent things, but I will cling to some of it to ensure my own sanity. You know how it goes, no hobby, no hope ;)
Well those are the biggest items for me, but that's not to say Paul doesn't have his own task list to struggle with, but this is my blog, so... you know, mostly my stuff.  Below are the beads I made this weekend(and some last weekend I think) and the goodies I made as my last freedom session in the studio. :)
A young man (photographer, I think) asked us if we make anything that's "not cute", and after surveying all my trays and suggesting a few pieces that I thought might be less cute, it was determined that my style just includes "cute."  I'm happy with that, despite recalling being a young girl ages ago that wanted nothing to do with the word. ;)

My beads!!! I really still love beads, and I need to make more that I can use to make myself a bracelet or two.  The one with brownish swirl over black (see that nugget on the right at the end?) was very similar to a set I made for a friend's moving-away present last week too.  Things are changing, and not just the leaves. :)

Friday, July 29, 2011

New Implosions and an Octopus!

Each week I get to do glass is really a different skill set.  Since we went on vacation and spent 2.5 weeks mostly in Seattle, WA, I am rested and excited to make new stuff.  Unfortunately, the clock is running out.  I have put off finishing my Bachelor's degree for too many years, and now that I have firmly decided my career path (hey, Business Admin. just wasn't my dream, ok? :P), I have to get my butt back in gear.  Therefore, this fall, I will hopefully be starting back up into my first class in years.  I'm de-prioritized for registration as I have been out for so long, but I'll pick from what's left over available-seat-wise if a few good classes are still open.  Wish me luck for getting into... drumroll please... Statistics!  Yes I know you're excited for me, right?

Anyway,  with my precious days and hours ticking down, it seems more and more imperative that I make new stuff and get to share it with all of you, as our fans have become friends, friends fans, and we're all just one big happy family now, right? :)  Without further ado, here are my newest pieces:

White Flower Implosion (on ArtFire)
This is one of my newest implosions, and you may very well know this is a tough technique.  You literally have to coax the glass into blooming for you, so I hope someone loves this flower someday! ;)

Black Octopus Pendant (on ArtFire)
We all love octopi, right?  These guys always make me smile, so hopefully we shared one today!
White and Blue Small Implosion Pendant
Last but not least another implosion, but smaller and with 1/3 the petals as the first one.  This one, however, has white petals that are blue on the back - no easy feat, I tell you.  Drop me a comment, otherwise I'll be back with more new goodies to share soon, as again, time is running out!  It will be more like a guilty pleasure to blog about glass once I have homework to do again.  Have a great Friday!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Tide Pool Challenge! (Glass Art from the FD Group)

Right now the Fire Divas July challenge is going on, this month's theme being "Tide Pool." There are some really fantastic beads entered into this one, so you know us Fire Divas are excited.  Even though it's a bit of a competition each month we hold it, we are all glass fans at heart and love to see what everyone is up to in such a talented group.

Voting ends tomorrow! Please vote for your favorite entry on the right side of the Fire Divas blog and leave a comment there to be entered to win a $20 gift certificate from ME! Goodies that you can use the gift cert on can be found at Shepherd Creations ArtFire Studio! Please include your email address with your comment (does not have to show, I don't think) so that the Fire Divas group are able to notify you about your prize. :)

***You can find the poll to the right and at the top of the Fire Divas blog page***

You have to check out the blog to vote and qualify to win my $20 gift certificate, so what are you waiting for? Get over there! :)

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Art for the Animals Auction: Bidding Ends June 21st!

As mentioned previously, we had the privilege of donating two pieces to this year's Art for the Animals auction at our local shelter.  We do this each year they have it, and are always glad when the pieces donated raise money to help fund their animal rescue and adoption efforts. :)

Here are the two pieces we sent in this year.  It's easy to bid on these or any of the other great art pieces donated if you want to support our Riverside County Dept. of Animal Services!  If you do, THANK YOU!!!
Black & White Spiral Turtle Necklace

Dragonfly Necklace
So whatever cause you choose to support, be it Beads of Courage, Breast Cancer Awareness, Alzheimer's Foundation, Feed the Poor, Humane Society, or even if you're undetermined, remember that a little support goes a long way.  Plus they always need volunteers at the animal shelters to help out with the critters, so check out volunteering locally if you've got the time to volunteer and haven't decided where yet.  A friend of mine encouraged her children for years by volunteering as a family, and her two children are now wonderful young adults that volunteer like it's second-nature. So look into it, you'll be glad you did! Have a great week! :) 

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Custom Work Week

This week I had a rush custom order and one from last week, and both are FINISHED!!!  I know you guys know how good it feels to finish a project, and I'm enjoying that feeling right now about these two challenges.  First off, we have a custom project that involved three pendants, the hardest of which being a fancy citrus pendant.  It was designed by my customer, and it has an orange as the focus, an orange blossom above it, and two upwards-facing leaves.  Here are the final two that were delivered (forgive the background, I photo custom stuff on the kiln sometimes while it's fresh so I can email with my Droid :) ):

Lastly, we have this interesting challenge that was a thoughtful gift for one of my customer's children's teachers.  It is a purple bow pendant, with lots of color variety and my own personal style :).  Of course when we do custom requests, we can never make just one (unless we're REALLY feeling in the zone!), so here is my draft ribbon plus all the bows made for the final selection.  She chose hers and was really pleased when it made the teacher tear up Friday when she presented it to her.  Which one is your favorite?
So which one is it?  Can you also guess which one was chosen as the final bow pendant?

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Art for the Animals Show!

It was yesterday, and really hard to resist adopting more critters!  Our two shelter cats are plenty to handle, but really, there are so many  cats and dogs that still need good homes.  We donated our pieces for the auction that will take place near the end of this month, so you will see a post from me once the auction starts so you can bid or see the other local art being sold to raise funds. 
The Art for the Animals show was also judged, and although it was the first time I think we've had our glass judged, it went well, with our goodies earning First Place in the jewelry category!  See how excited we were?

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Earth Day, Easter, and Sunday Show-Off!

I'm a little late, but nonetheless: Happy Earth Day! Also, I'm just on time to say Happy Easter!  We're always celebrating nature and the earth around here, so I didn't feel that I had to show off my little planet earth pendants, but maybe another day :)

A new week, and finally new listings!  I've been pretty busy lately making spring goodies, and have barely had time online.  The big Mother's Day show is coming up next weekend, so I've been working on new designs too, some are firsts for me, and a few are with skills I've had to dust off, but you'll see them after the big show :)  Today's showing off includes new insects and a teal sea turtle:
First, a red and pink butterfly pendant:

Next, here's a cute yellow and black bumblebee pendant:

And for variety... A new teal tiger-striped sea turtle pendant!!:
They are all my babies, so it's hard to say which is my favorite, but you know me: I sure do love sea turtles :P    Have a great weekend, and remember to be kind to your Earth every day (I'm sure you already are!), and Happy Easter!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Farmer's Market Finds!

I'm inspired by all the advice I've read from environmentalists that say "Eat local, eat organic, and eat what's in season!"  Now organic may not always be feasible, but if we can at least have some farmer assurance that they don't use conventional fertilizer and pesticides, I'm satisfied.  For now...  And yes, I do realize how fortunate I am to live on the West coast, where farmer's markets can run all year round, and have ripe goodies no matter when you come.  We are blessed here, and I am told that it's much harder to eat within a 100-mile food radius of your home if you live in areas less-suited for rich farming.  I'm not intending to evoke jealousy from you cold-climate lovers, but here are some goodies I picked up at the farmer's markets recently:

These are gorgeous.  It is art in the form of a root vegetable, color beyond my wildest beta-carotene-dreams, and I am in love with them:
Purple carrots!
These are purple carrots, with orange and yellow flesh inside.  We roasted them in the oven, and they were delightful!  It was fun buying them, chopping them, photographing them, cooking them, eating them, and now blogging about them.  I highly advise you snag some of these if you find them, as you can see I was clearly smitten with them.  A little olive oil and seasoning, plus some ripe local avocados on top, and voila! Lovely, healthful lunch :)  It helped that I sort-of went along with this recipe from Smitten Kitchen (my favorite food blog).

Besides my newfound love of purple carrots (which, by the way, were too woody for snacking raw, so let me just put that out there for you who had dipping in mind!), I was also able to score a great deal on some strawberries at another farmer's market.  I got 4 little green baskets of strawberries for such a deal that I had to photograph them as I was washing to cut and freeze them (some to eat now, the rest to freeze, can't have any going bad on me!).  It was a lot of strawberries, and I am now smoothie-equipped!

Well, as this is also my glass blog, it must marry up to the obsession somehow:  I'm now inspired to see what vegetables I can represent well in glass, as I already have two glass carrots (photo to come, promise!), have made a few other veggies, and will likely try for a gardener's necklace SOON.  Stay tuned.  And, eat fresh and local if you can. :)

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Easter Eggs!

Tonight's quick post is to show you the fun stuff we made in our most recent lesson: Easter Eggs!  They were fun to make and decorate, and without the cleanup of regular egg decorating :)

My student made two and helped on another.  The basket was mine, and I think it turned out rather well, don't you?

Saturday, April 2, 2011

New Fire Divas Collection on ArtFire: Spring Goodies!

Today's feature is a new collection of Fire Divas glass goodies fresh on ArtFire.  We have a few new Fire Divas lately, including Michelle of SunDoor Beads and Christina of FengBeads, so there are even more goodies to choose from in the Fire Divas collections :)  Besides this new collection to show off, today is the last day to take advantage of the Fire Divas sale (secret coupon Divathanks for most, see blog for specific shop coupon codes!), so make sure you visit the blog post to know what you're missing!