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My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond #311: It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like CHRISTMAS (!?!)

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Blog entry by Sheila Landry (scrollgirl) posted 04-16-2011 01:20 PM 3561 reads 0 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 310: The Lectures Part 311 of My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond series Part 312: Ready for Cutting »

Working in the publishing industry sometimes make you feel like you are Alice in Wonderland. Nothing makes sense. There is no sense of time, space or season.

Displacing holidays has been a part of my life for many, many years. I remember well the hot summer days when my friend Cari and I sat at the pool, watching the kids swim while we were on the side painting Santas and Christmas items. I remember how ironic it was that the beads of sweat would be falling on Mr. Snowman while I was trying to paint him and the only problem we had was that the acrylic paint was drying too quickly in the hot sun. Those are wonderful memories and I think that Cari and I truly kept Christmas in our hearts all year long!

Working for the magazine and catalog companies also keeps Christmas alive throughout most of the year. It seems that everyone loves to do Christmas projects no matter what time of year it is and I see this not only through my wholesale sales, but also through sales on my website. There just is no bad time to offer Christmas items.

Usually before the snow is even melted I am thinking about what I will be offering for next year. Although I was somewhat side tracked this year with the show and all, it hasn’t taken me long to come up with some cool ideas for holiday decorations for others to make. Actually, I am somewhat behind in my submissions, but my Editor has graciously saved some space for me and my partner to fill in the Holiday issue. That is one of the benefits of having a standing relationship with a company for so long. I am grateful that he is holding the positions for us to fill, as I would hate to miss that special issue.

The week has been one of recovery for me, as many of you have read. Each day, little by little I am feeling back to normal and getting things back in order. It only makes sense that what took months of preparation to accomplish would take a little time to get back to normal. It seemed that the total focus of my energies for at least a month or more before leaving has been on the trip. Now it is time to get back to designing and the site and the “meat and potatoes” work that will sustain my business. It feels good though to be focused on something that is familiar to me.

While cleaning and organizing and getting things back in order, my mind has been racing. What to do for the Holiday issue for the magazine? I want something new and different, that I haven’t seen ‘out there’ yet. My Editor always loves ornaments, and I do have some ideas for that, but I somehow wasn’t excited about making a set of ornaments just yet. I have ideas for some and may also offer a set to them, but I wanted something that was different.

Yesterday while cleaning and doing my mail I had an idea of something that I think would be really nice. The more I thought about, the more I liked it. Little by little I am figuring out the details of this project in my head and I feel that by today I am ready to hit the drawing board with it and it is ready to be born. Although the fine details are still incubating in my head, I am thrilled and excited at the thought of it and I am getting that familiar feeling of excitement and anticipation in seeing it come to life.

How I have missed that part of designing!!!

For those of you who also design, you know exactly what I am talking about. It is that ‘high’ you get just from thinking about something. You can picture it in your mind down to the finest detail and the anticipation of actually building it and seeing it come to life is exhilarating and thrilling all at once. What a wonderful way to christen my new saw!

I am not going to tell you about it yet. I will be a stinker and make you wait. Although I promise that I will give you a sneak peek when I get going on it. I have some other ideas too for a couple of different projects that I will submit, but this one will be the springboard that will get me back into designing.

As I sit here this morning I can’t help but think that I am truly happy and all is going well in my life. Have I made millions? No way! But I am happy to report that I “broke even” on what I made in teaching on the trip and what it cost me to make it. The way I look at it (the pink cloud way) I got to meet people and make contacts and see my children and reconnect with the people from the magazine and it cost me nothing but my teaching time (which I love to do anyway!) The long term of those contacts and meetings cannot have a price put on it. How can you put a price on experience?

I am back home now and full of ideas and my dear companion Pancakes is stretched across my lap gently purring as I write. His “grammy” is back and all is right with his world, too. Take notice, my friends, of the simple things around you that make you happy. Focus on them and appreciate them for what they are. Be it your family or a smile from a stranger or a devoted look from your pet. It is these things that will bring your heart joy and peace.

I wish you all a wonderful day today!

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



11 comments so far

View Dennisgrosen's profile

Dennisgrosen

10850 posts in 2578 days


#1 posted 04-16-2011 01:52 PM

good morning on a sunny day Sheila :-)
now we know you are back ….. Chrismas , Alice in Wonderland and the pink Cloud not forgetting
a little secret you won´t reveal yet ….. yes all fits in …. :-)

I know you say you wont do something that has been done
and its proppebly offered on several other sites they seems to be very easy to saw
but the painting isn´t I´m thinking on the old classic and new classic cartoons … like this
http://lumberjocks.com/projects/47398
I know its with acrylic colours ...... and every one likes them ….... just a bread and butter thought for your site .. in a werd moment …. LOL

have a great day ….. don´t forget to enjoy the spring outside too despite all your new idea´s :-)

take care
Dennis

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9040 posts in 2383 days


#2 posted 04-16-2011 02:08 PM

Good morning to you Mr. Dennis! :)

I used to paint (using acrylics) all the Disney character ornaments. I even did an old Red Flyer Wagon with a Pochontas theme. I used aqua Rustolium paint on it first as a base and then painted the characters in acrylic, followed by about 15 coats of clear. We used to take the kids to the Farmer’s Market in it and people would stop us along the way to ask us where we got it. I wish I could find pictures of it. I will look when I have the chance.

Disney stuff is fun to do, but you have to be REAL careful of copyrights. I can’t do anything for sale or such with Disney, but they are fun for personal gifts. :)

I hope you have a great Spring day too! Is it Spring where you are yet?

Sheila

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

View Dennisgrosen's profile

Dennisgrosen

10850 posts in 2578 days


#3 posted 04-16-2011 02:27 PM

yes the last week has been more or less in the spring with temp mostly over 50 Degree Fahrenheit
and sunny
so in a ½ week time the potato´s is in the ground and from there around 7-8 weeks
the dinner will stay on fresh new potato´s and fresh vegetables done on the BBQ
with a niiice piece of meat …... something to look forward to …. LOL

I didn´t knew they still had copyright´s on the old classic
and I would say they can´t have it on a new pattern transformed to a new medie = new artistic expression

at least that how the state look at it when I have used pictures /photo´s from other photographer
and mixed them to something ells in a colagething

but I do know from photo the laws about light on and in building can bee tricky
so I´m realy not so supriced over what you say

take care
Dennis

View huntter2022's profile

huntter2022

275 posts in 2079 days


#4 posted 04-16-2011 03:50 PM

As Shelia said , Disney is copyright . I seen a guy at a flea market selling wooden Disney lawn ornaments and a guy ( Disney Rep ) walked up and told him he had to stop selling them or be fined . the guy argue for awhile and next thing I seen was a officer serving him papers . Make alot selling Disney , NFL , NBA , NASCAR , and Harley Davidson but the risk of being caught and you could lose alot more than you want to lose .

-- David ; "BE SAFE BE HAPPY" Brockport , NY

View BertFlores58's profile

BertFlores58

1684 posts in 2385 days


#5 posted 04-16-2011 03:55 PM

Hi Sheila,
Now it is you who is really back from previous. I know that after you have been through with those that transpired… the next will be your reflections, processing the improvement factors then now here you are back again into thinking ahead… the Christmas season.

With respect to your surprises, you better scribble it first because everytime you alter it, the first time is always the best. It is always happening to me… what comes first is the better one…

Well, I am thinking that you will change a while from candles to elevated and multiple trays… with turned stand.. just a guess or it may help you out…

I am thinking also that it is worth having a try to have below on wood.

-- Bert

View BritBoxmaker's profile

BritBoxmaker

4607 posts in 2499 days


#6 posted 04-16-2011 04:39 PM

Good things are worth waiting for, Sheila. I also visualise designs in my mind, though most of my mental activity is devoted to ‘how the heck’ I’m going to do that. The sense of relief and achievement when the solution finally arrives is immense. If there is no solution its put on the subconscious ‘back-burner’ until it occurs. Like you I don’t make excessive amounts from what I do but I also get a sense of happiness through achievement.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging. http://www.theartofboxes.com

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9040 posts in 2383 days


#7 posted 04-16-2011 05:46 PM

Agreed, Martyn. Achievement is in itself its own reward. I realize that there are cynics who think that this is a “love/hate relationship with poverty”, but I do feel sorry for those people because they don’t seem to appreciate art and creating for their own sake. Some things you just can’t hang a dollar amount on. :)

Sheila

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

View BritBoxmaker's profile

BritBoxmaker

4607 posts in 2499 days


#8 posted 04-16-2011 05:56 PM

Yes, Sheila. There’s a phrase used to describe people driven by money, much used back in the 80’s.

People who know the price of everything but the value of nothing.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging. http://www.theartofboxes.com

View William's profile

William

9906 posts in 2305 days


#9 posted 04-17-2011 03:09 AM

You’ve mentioned the saw a few times, but when do we get the whole scoop? I know you’ve been very busy and are trying to get things back to normal. When all the dust settles though, I’d love to hear all your honest thoughts on the Excaliber. The two biggest things I really want to know about are blade tension system and blade clamping system (close up photos would be nice of the two systems as well).
I’m sorry. I don’t ask for much. Do I?

-- http://wddsrfinewoodworks.blogspot.com/

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9040 posts in 2383 days


#10 posted 04-17-2011 12:48 PM

That is a wonderful idea William! I think I will take pictures and introduce you all to my new saw. I still haven’t really had much time to cut on it with all the traveling and teaching and such, but I drew up my pattern yesterday and I should be ready to cut today (Sunday) It will make some interesting reading for Monday I hope. :)

Sheila

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

View William's profile

William

9906 posts in 2305 days


#11 posted 04-17-2011 01:11 PM

I will look forward to it Sheila. Although it may be years before I could even think about affording an excaliber, it has peaked my interest for a while. The problem is though that the most I have seen one is of photos on the internet that really haven’t shown me much besides the overall machine. Since blade tension and blade holding techniques are two of the first things I look for in a saw, I would love to hear from someone who’s opinion I trust on their opinion of these two operations on the excaliber. Other things, like vibrations, throat depth, table size and such, while I would still like to hear you opinion on, I really don’t think are issues with the excaliber.

-- http://wddsrfinewoodworks.blogspot.com/

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