My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond #252: Getting that Last Set of Instructions Done

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Blog entry by Sheila Landry (scrollgirl) posted 02-10-2011 01:50 PM 3682 reads 0 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 251: Printers, and Scroll Saws and Blades - Oh My! Part 252 of My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond series Part 253: Planning Ahead »

I have one goal today. I need to get those instructions finished for the Bee Candle Tray written and pack up that and a project by my partner to be shipped out tomorrow. Period.

It is just one of those things where every time I begin to work on it, something of a bit more importance comes up and it keeps getting put on the back burner. But enough is enough and I need to get it done and out of here.

It isn’t as if it is difficult to do it, but it is a little more involved than just writing them for a pattern packet. I usually include anywhere from 15 to 20 step-by-step photographs when I send something to the magazine. By the time it is published, sometimes they only use 8-10 pictures but it depends on what the project is and how much room they have, I suppose. The line drawings are done and I am in the process of weeding through the 65 plus photographs that I took when building it. I am almost done with that though. Each one has to be cropped and color corrected in Photoshop and made to look its best.

I really like that part of the job though. As I said the other day, Photoshop is an amazing program and I am getting really good at knowing what I have to do to pinpoint problems with my photographs. I just recently learned how to use what is called a “quick mask” which allows you to easily select only certain areas of the photograph to alter and adjust. I don’t know why I haven’t used it before. (yes I do – because the program is so vast that I didn’t really realize it was there or how to use it!) But say you have a spot of glare or one side of the picture is reflecting the flash more than the other, you can easily select just that portion to adjust the exposure, levels, saturation, or whatever and everything looks more balanced and even. It is really incredible.

But know more about what I can accomplish seems to make me pickier than I already am with the pictures. I can’t in good conscience send them on their way knowing that I can make them better. It seems I spend a little more time on them then I used to. But they do look better. I don’t want to count on the art department there to adjust them. I have seen both good results and not so good results from doing that. I suppose I am quite picky.

I already have ideas burning in my head as to what I want to cut next. So you see, in ways I am like everyone else here – longing for more time in the shop. I had cut out the little Easter ornaments that went with the tray last weekend and there they sit waiting for me to sand and finish them. I keep thinking “I hope I have time to finish them today” and the days keep marching past without me touching them. It is time to make a mini list of important things to do today and really attack it with a vengeance. No more messing around.

Yesterday was a really good day, although we didn’t return until after 9pm. My partner worked with Bernie and got another load of wood to bring here. They had trouble with the band saw though and it was frustrating to him because we lost so much of the wood in the resawing and planing process. We talked on the way home of some better ways and we are definitely going to look at our options in March. It will be good to see and perhaps try different tools to give us an idea what will work best for us. He has researched band saws quite extensively and has narrowed it down to a couple of options. It is a huge expense for us though, so we really want to be sure before purchasing anything. It is just another step in the process I suppose.

So today will be a no-nonsense and focused day. I am going to talk to Jean, who initially nominated me as a presenter for the show and she is going to let me know about my hotel arrangements and what she has planned for me. She is very involved with several woodworking related groups, as well as some other groups and has been very busy with her organizations. We need to touch base so I can make some concrete dates to plan for our trip. I believe that I will be heading to Chicago after the New York show for several days to see my son and daughter and want to let them know when that will happen so we can all make plans.

So with that said, I will get to work now. I already did a load of email this morning, but I have a couple of more things to do before I finish up on the instructions. I am determined to have the projects shipped by tomorrow. It will be a large load off of my mind.

I hope you all have a great day. Happy Thursday!

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

2 comments so far

View BertFlores58's profile (online now)


1698 posts in 2920 days

#1 posted 02-11-2011 03:48 AM

Hi Sheila,
I am really very glad, you are so proactive in your work. Already thinking of the easter aside from the show. That is one good values that you have.

I just like to suggest some way of getting those student lively during your show. If you need some brainteasers as breaker (when things get boring) then I have a challenge for scrollers. What if you are cutting with a template that is like below:

Will you be able to scrollsaw if your pattern is moving?....

Can you manage if the grain of the wood will affect your vision in cutting a straight line? .....

Or you can simply display those amazing works here in the LJs. I just hope good luck for the upcoming event. God bless.

-- Bert

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9228 posts in 2917 days

#2 posted 02-12-2011 07:22 PM

My goodness, Bert! Looking at those before my morning coffee is dangerous! LOL

Thank you for your kind thoughts! :)


-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

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