Thursday, April 29, 2010

A Lovely Discovery With a Chance to Have a Piece Of It

I've had a final exam to work on since noon yesterday and have about a half a page of notes.  Nice.  I have been doing a lot of "thinking" about the topic, though, so that has to count for something.  It's all about cultural divisions of humankind which then makes me think about people and differences and war and peace and love and hate and then I lose focus on the six pages I'm supposed to write on.  During some of my "thinking" (which is what I was doing when I wasn't "napping" haaaaaaaa) I decided to do some googling around for cultural inspiration and found may way here to the land of creative blogs.  Among friends and family and artists from near and far I've found a cultural phenomenon that I'm happy to be a part of.  :)  But, to the point...my discovery.  I went to Cindy's Sweet Bead Studio blog because she enticed me with a title about digital art.  Even more to the point, the lovely discovery was Susan Tuttle.  She's a multi-media artist who has shared her love and skill of digital art in tons of publications and through on-line courses to name a couple of sources.  Most importantly, though, she's just published a book called Digital Expressions that's now available a Amazon.


I'm thrilled about finding the book, but Susan's blog has so many fantastic pieces of artwork.  I just love it!!  In the spirit of all things orange, here's a sample of her work:


So, your chance to have a piece of my discovery?  Susan's having a giveaway!  Click on the link to get more information on a chance to get a copy of Digital Expressions.

Oh, and wish me luck on getting six more pages done this evening.  :)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

A Quick Wink...

...from my one-eyed sweetie, Brando!  Isn't he precious?!  Of course he's in a permanent winking state, but I love that sweet green eye...especially when I catch it for a second before he sees a bird and looks away.

Don't feel bad for him because he's doing great!  He actually took off across the yard chasing a baby bunny the other day.  Don't worry, he's a little fat so he couldn't get through the fence to catch the quick little one.  haaaaaaaaaaa 

He's actually staring at me right now because it's about the time of night I either get ready for bed or get up and give them treats.  :)  Guess that means I have to go.

Monday, April 26, 2010

When Does Collecting Turn Into Hoarding?

Someone in my house has been hoarding handmade lampwork art beads.  Can you even imagine?  haaaaaaaaaaaaaa

I guess my collecting all started when I was in middle school and had to have all the latest cool stickers.  Remember Lisa Frank?  How about Mrs. Grossman's? I still have that sticker book...yes, it has moved with me eight times!  haaaaaaaaaaaa  But, of course I have actually expanded the sticker collection into a whole nightmare (okay, it's actually a daydream) of crafty paper, adornments, glue, more paper and, yes, even more stickers.  I can't even tell you how many plastic containers (with lovely printed labels) I have filled with my artsy-crafty life supplies.

When I fell in love with making jewelry a few years back, my joy of hoarding spread to beautiful beads.  I should probably feel guilty that these pretties are only my treats to look at, sorted out in color-specific drawers with lovely printed labels.  Since I don't feel guilty at all about my collection I figure it's a safe time for me to start actually using them.  If you're a bead afficionado, then you know that handmade beads aren't inexpensive, so these bracelets aren't either. But, since they're a little gallery all on their own, I think it's totally worth using them all up!!

Lampwork glass discs from HMB Studios
Lampwork rondelles from Lisa New
Plus...beans from South America, a bit of Javanese
glass (which is so appropriate because we studied
Indonesia today in class), and a few ceramic pieces.


Lampwork disks from HMB Studios
Lampwork rondelles from Lisa New
A lampwork rondelle from Cindy Craig
Plus...beans from South America, some Javanese
 glass, and a few ceramic pieces.

So what sort of collection do you have?  Are you keeping it just for yourself?  What are you saving all those beads for?  haaaaaaaaaa

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Beads 2010 Project: Marsha Neal Studio

There were massive thunderstorms last night and we expect that there'll be more storms all day today.  Looks like it's going to be a work-in-your-pajamas-doing-crafty-stuff sort of day.  In typical Air Force fashion, I got about 20 emails and pop-up alerts on my computer warning about tornadoes.  So, what do I do?  At 1100 last night I put the flashlight battery in the recharger and took pictures of my bead studio in case I need it for insurance.  I briefly thought about what I would do with the cats, but then decided they'd just run around like crazy anyway.  Nice.  Nothing like having a plan.

Anyway, to focus on what this post is really all about...another artist from Beads 2010:  Marsha Neal.  I love the variety of textures and shapes and materials that Marsha uses.  I was lucky enough to win a giveaway on her blog a few months back and got some seriously awesome treats.

First, a necklace...
It's all about circles and wire.  One of Marsha's decaled porcelain donuts was the inspiration.  I added some "totally twisted" wire, a recycled glass ring, and a little wooden ring to create a focal trio.  All are strung on a pretty blue silk ribbon from Riverstone Bead Co. that's finished off with a toggle

Now, for the ears...check out the "shards"...
I have to admit I was a little stumped by Marsha's porcelain "shards" when I first looked at them.  But, with a little gunmetal grey wire-wrapping, they make a great pairing with some lightweight paper beads.  I love when a design challenge works out into something cool!

You can shop for either of these pretties in my Etsy shop!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Featuring Porcelain

Like I said yesterday, the Beads 2010 magazine really got me inspired.  So, I decided tonight would be a Joan Miller porcelain kind of evening.  Now if you've ever seen her work, you know she makes some fantastically detailed pieces (and if you haven't seen her work, then you should click over and check out her website.)  But, I was feeling a little more simple-minded when I pawed through the bins on her table at BFW so I have a few less ornate pieces to work with.  So, here are a couple more designs that are now available in my JenJuddRocks Etsy shop.

First is this Orangina Necklace...

The pendant and the coordinating ring are both from Joan Miller.  And, because one artist isn't enough, I also added some etched lampwork glass from Pennsylvania girl, Sue, from SueBeads.  Copper keeps the orange spirit up and then leather keeps it casual.

For the lobes, here are some earrings...

The small Joan Miller porcelain rings are the highlight of this pair.  But, there's also a little leather and some teardrop beads from Sonoran Glass (who are also in the magazine!)

In the spirit of sharing, I've got to give you two more things...first, if you haven't seen the Beads of Clay blog then you need to check it out.  And second, a while back I created some resource lists and want to share the Ceramic & Porcelain list again.  Plus, you can always see the box over on the right-hand side of my blog that links to the originally posted lists.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

La Bella Joya - Un Artista Dulce de Cuenta

Did someone order a pink lemonade?  haaaaaaaaaa

Thanks to Marcie at LaBellaJoya for these awesome yellow and pink beaded beads!  They look like tiny disco balls--perfect for a Barbie dream house!  :)  About a week ago, I saw her post about them and thought to myself, "Self, didn't you ask her to make pink and yellow beaded beads?"  Then, I answered, "Why, yes!  I must have these!"  As it turns out, she made them with me in mind but didn't want me to feel pressured to buy after my overwhelming haul at Beadfest...how awesomely thoughtful is that?!  But, of course, I got them.  And, when I showed her these pieces, I think I made her proud.  Let me quote her..."Wow! Jen! You made my beads look like rock stars! EXCELENTE!"  haaaaaaaaaaaa  For the record, she says she loved working with colors outside of her norm, so if you likey, you should go see her shop!!

I initially thought they'd all go into one project, but when I started mixing and matching around on my worktable.  Plus, I just got my Beads 2010 issue and have flipped through it so many times the corners are worn.  I highlighted (yes, with an actual yellow highlighter--I have at least three of them) some of the bead artists I already know and love and some of those who I don't yet know and love.  I'm going to try to incorporate some of my blog-world superstar friends' work.  So, the pretties ended up in two projects...

Here are what I call "Disco in the Garden" earrings...

The sparklies from LaBellaJoya are matched up with an earthy, glittery bit of bronzite and a fun plexiglass flower cutout from MyELEMENTS (which you can see in Beads 2010...including a project from Yvonne!)

Not to be left out, the pink Beadity McBeadersons decided on a bangle with a super-eclectic mix of beads.  This is where the sweet elixir comes in...it's called the Pink Lemonade bangle.

Not to be satisfied with just one artist represented in this bracelet, I included some lampwork glass rondelles in a golden-yellow with a purplish-pink band by GardanneBeads.  Then there are beans, recycled glass, resin, lemon quartz, pink wire coils, and Czech glass.  You can't even imagine what a mess my table was after picking out all these components.  :)

You can buy either of these for your very own in my etsy shop.

So, cheers to Marcie!!  If I translated my title right, it means she a "sweet bead artist!"  :)

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Boom, Baklava, Beer...

Boom - This morning while getting dressed, I heard a loud noise.  I figured it was the cat knocking over his carpet-covered-bowl/perch while trying to jump through the door to catch a bird.  But, when I looked out at him, he just looked at me, sitting all comfy in his favorite spot there by the screen door, with that "what are you looking at me for? are you going to give me treats?" look.  So, then, my next thought was that the furnace or something blew up.  But, I didn't smell smoke so I left for work as usual.  Lo' and behold, according to the radio, I was aural witness to the space shuttle flight towards Florida and it was the sonic boom that I heard.  I laughed so hard I almost wrecked my car.  I can now be certified as the crazy cat lady:  I thought a space travel miracle was wacky cat action.

Baklava - I don't think any dessert item with 2.5 sticks of real butter can be wrong.  It's in the oven and smells fantastic!  My class is studying Turkey tomorrow and in lieu of doing the required reading and preparation for our group project (everyone loves group projects, right?) I'm baking (and blogging) a traditional Turkish food.  haaaaaaaa  Is there irony in being the fat girl who brings snacks?  haaaaaaa  Is there even more irony that I've spent more time composing this post than I will the two powerpoint slides that I'm going to deliver tomorrow?  haaaaaaaaaaaaa

Beer - I found some Miller Lite cans in the back of my cupboard the other day.   It's like a little extra treasure for the evening.  It goes perfectly with the leftover pistachios. 

Beads - It was a good mail day yesterday.  I got some beaded beads from my La Bella Joya connection. Sweetie Marcie listed some pink and yellow beads and I just knew they were for me because I hinted to her back in the Bead Soup Party that I needed some strawberry lemonade beads.  I'll have pics to show later this week.  Another cool package that I got was from an old high school friend and recent customer who happened to be at a Bead Fest with some friends and didn't know what to make of it.  She thought of me and sent me some Sonoran glass and a couple of My Elements bits.  It's like she could read my bead mind and we haven't seen each other in over 20 years!!  haaaaaaaaaaa

Bangles - My current mission is to use as many fantastic art beads in eclectic bracelets as humanly possible.  Here's one with the following ingredients:  a pair of purple and silver lampwork rondelles from Suebeads, an organic purple and brown lampwork focal from Bronwen Heilman, an etched Tibetan agate bead from Happy Mango, a bone flower accent that I picked up in Hawaii in 2008 (has it been that long?!) at The Bead Gallery.  Oh, and there are some South American beans that my friend, Stella, brought me from Brazil.  :)  There's wood on there, too...I think that's from Michael's.

Bright - I got an A on my air campaign planning test!

Boring - The lecture we had this morning was nearly interminable.  Monotone is not a good briefing style when discussing the law of war.  Yes, in one day I can learn about how we strive to avoid civilian casualties in conflict, make three pairs of earrings, and chef up a baklava.

Brave - I got all my hair cut off.  Pics will follow, but for those who've known me for years, I'm back to my roots.  Pun intended.

Baby Boy - My little one-eyed sweetie fattie cat is doing great!  The other day he was resting outside in the sun with me and the next thing I know he's jetting across the yard after a baby bunny.  Since I don't like walking in grass without shoes (I have a weird bug creepy feeling if I do) I ran in the house to get some flip-flops before going to find out if he had a bloody bunnilet (my new word for baby bunny) in his grasp.  Lucky for the bunny (and for me), one-eyed fattie didn't catch him.  haaaaaaaaaaaaaa I'm glad I can look at him as my sweet half-blind angel and not as a killer.  :)


Blessed - I love my blog friends and my family and my near friends and my far friends and my sweetie husband and my sunshine life that seems sad sometimes, but seems to get better every gorgeous morning!!  Thank you!!!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

A Sunny Sunday...

Some of my most awesomest fave lampwork disks by HMB Studios and Linden Avenue Designs are the sunshine behind this sweet bangle.  Celebrate some sunny art beads with some shopping at JenJuddRocks on Etsy.

p.s. don't you love my photo trick of putting the focus on the back instead of the front?  haaaaaaaaaaaaaa  I will have to learn how to take pictures someday.  :)

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Art Bead Scene Challenge for April - Klee

The ABS Challenge for this month is based on Klee's Insula Dulcamara


Insula Dulcamara by Paul Klee, 1938
31 1/2 x 69 in
Oil on newsprint, mounted on burlap
Klee Foundation, Bern, Switzerland
 
So, as an inspiration, we've got...
Exotic associations
Sweet & Bitter...Bittersweet
Calypso
Scarlet fruits & brown leaves
Serpents
Dynamic versus Static
Line and Color
 
Here's the result:

We've got a plethora of art beads in this sweet little bangle bracelet.  There are some rondelles from Humblebeads that add a really organic feeling when combined with some wooden bicones.  Then, there are some lampwork rounds but I honestly don't know where they came from other than Ebay two years ago.  :)  But, there's even more lampwork with disks from HMB Studios and Linden Avenue Designs.  It's finished out with Greek ceramic disks (also from Linden Avenue) and some "totally twisted" pieces in gunmetal grey.

You can see the other entries for the challenge at the Flickr group here.  There are some gorgeous, unique pieces created from this single inspiration painting.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Wire Girl At Work

bead fest teaching 8, originally uploaded by kabs_concepts.

In my class with Kerry Bogert over the weekend, she was taking some pics. Here's one of the lovely mess I had going on...which turned into a "Delightful" necklace. It's one of the projects out of her book, Totally Twisted.

Plus, I was wearing a necklace with Kerry's beads that I made last year. I was worried I'd seem like some crazy bead stalker chick, but it was okay. haaaaaaaaaaaaa

p.s. the creative energy appears to have started at the roots of my hair! haaaaaaa

The BFW Bazaar Rocked...

Get it?  Rocked?  haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa 

Bead Fest Wire wasn't only about wire and metal, although that's the most fun part.  There's the shopping involved in this sort of weekend that adds that extra je ne sais quoi to the adventure.  :)  Okay, je sais...it's the overwhelming joy of picking up cool beads and then sharing them with friends and taking them home to touch and ogle.  I had to get some more storage thingies yesterday to put them all away.  My sweetie's gone so I have to get thrills somewhere!  haaaaaaaa

I have some fascination with garnet lately.  These are like faceted shiny raisins.  Oh, and you can never have too many "simple cut" faceted bits.  If all goes as planned, you'll see a piece called "Simple Cut Elegance" in the summer issue of Stringing that features this cut of stone.


And here are some more Facety McFacetsons.  I had to get the yellow and black ones even though they're a little strange to me because I was in Pennsylvania.  Get it?  Steelers?  haaaaaaaaa  The browny-orangy ones are still a mystery to me, but they're pretty.


And back in the land of more natural colors...this Red Creek Jasper is just gorgeous!  Plus, I love pyrite to mix with lapis (which makes me think of my deployed sweetie).  There's some bronzite, too, which I had to have because it looked sparkly.  Hey, I'm easy.


I'm going to spend the rest of the day cracking myself up...and making some stuff.  :)
haaaaaaaaaaa

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Bead Fest Wire - New Friends and Old

I'm recovering from my weekend in King of Prussia at Bead Fest Wire.  It was a fantastic weekend...well worth the flight up there even though airports aren't my favorite places.  This post is all about the people...there'll be another one for beads later.  :)

First, I spent Saturday in class with Kerry Bogert and fellow fan Bev.  We worked out a bunch of different chains focusing on Kerry's glass beads.  I felt like a random stalker chick when I showed up with my book in hand knowing all the details of her life from her blog.  But, luckily, I'm not her only fan...Bev and I were lucky enough to have Kerry all to ourselves for a great class.  Kerry's really down-to-earth, so we ended up gabbing like old beading buds all day long.  The class--and the project--exceeded my expectations.  :)  Here's a pic of us from midway through the day...

One of the best parts of any Bead Fest is the shopping.  :)  Curt called in the middle of my browsing and we got to have a nice long chat.  I actually happened to be right next to the table of goods from Afghanistan.  He was a little stressed out about his job, so I offered to distract him by telling him how much I was spending and what I was getting.  He declined with a laugh because he'd rather leave those numbers a mystery...what a great husband!  haaaaaaaaaa

Because this post isn't really about the beads, but about the people, I'm just showing this little bit of goodness from Na Bo Row...

I had the most fun shopping experience at their booth...must've been there for an hour!  And, when I needed help, Ms. Lynne was there for my...we laughed and laughed because I made fun of her hand-written nametag.  I promised her that she'd get a great mention because that was one of the highlights of my weekend.  She even wrote me a note on my reciept to "make it good."  haaaaaaaaaaaaa  So, for Lynne I'm sending out a huge laugh, a hug and a recommendation for amazing clasps and silver at Na Bo Row.

Last but not least, it was a great meetup weekend.  My old Air Force bud, Elisabeth, came up from DC to share some beady goodness.  She just opened up her own Etsy shop.  :)  Plus, we had dinner with Jeanette Ryan and Cindy Wimmer...lots of great bead and family chatting as I look forward to moving back to Virginia in a couple of months.  Whoo hoo!!!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Headed to Philly for Bead Fest Wire!

I can't believe it's finally time for my trip up to King of Prussia for Bead Fest Wire.  It has been ages since I registered for these workshops.  This is my third trip to this event, and it's going to be extra special this time because I get to meet some of my blogging buds!

I have to go pack.

Oh, and go to school first.  :)

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Pendentifs Magnifiques!

I just got these in the mail...my first etsy purchases from France.  :)
I found La Boutique de Cathy - Dumauvobleu - through the Bead Art Originals blog. 
Aren't they cool?!  I don't know why I thought I needed two of them...but I still want more!

Thanks for understanding my oooohing and aaaahing...polymer clay is amazing!  I need to bust out my new pasta machine and get motivated.  Nothing as cool as Cathy's work will ever show up on my table, but it's a great way to work off stress by molding and pounding and shaping.  :)

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Beer & Nut Jewelry

I have a test in the morning on joint air campaign planning.  Yep, a four page essay on the command and control of our country's air power...should be a cinch, right?  haaaaaaaaaaaa  Apparently I'm on a study break.  In honor of my little snack time, here are some of my newest pieces....

These earrings have all the beer and nuts you need!
The brown glass rings are recycled from bottles...from Art by the Case
Purple enameled headpins from SueBeads
Nuts from Brazil.  :)

Of course, a matching necklace would be great, right?



This necklace is copper cool.
The big copper toggle is from Artbeads.com.
The purple stone focal and crazy lace purple beads are from my random stash.
Most importantly, the recycled brown glass ring is from Bronwen Heilman.
Many thanks to my friend, Anne-Marie who did some proxy shopping for me out in Santa Fe.  :)
Oh, and there are lots more Brazilian nuts!

These beer-nut specials are in my etsy shop.  :)

Sunday, April 4, 2010

It Started With The Little Spotted Beads

I went through a phase probably about a year ago that I felt like I just had to have all these spotted "peacock beads."  There's just something about the color and fun and dottiness of them that makes me happy.  But, alas, they were sitting undiscovered in one of my various workshop drawers.  So, they're out and about, now, and playing well with others....
Yellow peacock beads from Artbeads.com
Light blue lampwork glass from SueBeads
Mykonos Greek ceramic square disks from LindenAvenueDesigns
Little yellow beans from my friend's trip to Brazil :)

Red peacock glass beads from Artbeads.com
Red & turquoise ruffled lampwork glass disks from HMB Studios
Blue textured lampwork glass from Blue Seraphim
Little red beans from my friend's trip to Brazil

Feel free to get your shopping on...these pairs are listed in my Etsy shop.  :)

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Spring and Pink...A Good Combo

It's a weekend full of cherry blossoms, scads of pollen, cute bunnies (or fat one-eyed kitties), and fun Spring jewelry!!  I'm celebrating with some pretty pink help from Artbeads.com.

First, a texture-rich necklace.  I've always wanted one of these pretty borosilicate glass toggles, so I went for pink.  Then, I finished off some dark pink satin out of my stash and some light pink organza ribbon  with silver ends.  Along with the cool clasp in the front, I decided to use one of my own polymer clay pendants and some bright green coordinating beads...a disc from HMB Studios and a big faux chalcedony nugget.  I guess this is as close to an Easter egg as I'll get this year.  :)

Another view...

While enjoying the scent of glue from the crimp ends, I decided to work with some copper and satin to see what I could come up with.  This big pink tube of satin silk wasn't exactly what I was expecting, but it turned out to be very fun!  It's called "fancy satin silk string" so I figured it'd be like string.  But, it was about the size around of my pinky finger.  Uh, what can I do with this?  Well, it turned into a great layer on wire and the ends sort of flared out into what reminds me of a tissue-paper flower.  So, here's a necklace with a pendant...

and some matching earrings....


Artbeads.com was the first website I tried years ago for my first on-line bead fixes and I've continued to use them for both basic components and fun, unique pieces.  So, I'm thrilled to be a part of their blogging community.  More ideas and links to other blogs can be found at the Artbeads Blog for Beaders

I'm going to go get myself a Cadbury creme egg (or six) and get my chocolate shock on!  haaaaaaaaa
On that note, hope you enjoy a lovely and blessed Easter weekend.  :)
The glass toggle and satin string used in the previous post, specifically referenced as from ArtBeads.com were provided as promotional gifts by for review or design partnership purposes.

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Charleston, SC, United States
I'm a retiree/artist/student who makes things. It's a nice kind of lifestyle!

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