Yesterday seemed to fly by faster than usual. I had so many wonderful things to work on that even though I got an earlier-than-usual start, it seemed before I knew it time had slipped by me and it was dark and I was running out of steam.
After I posted my blog here yesterday, I found I wasn’t really satisfied with the photographs of the little ballerinas that were wearing the tulle skirts. The pictures (while clear) seemed to have not shown the skirts very well at all.
I decided to take a step backwards and try some different lighting and backgrounds and see what would work best with them. After several different combinations, I found that using a black background and natural light did the best job showing the fine detail.
Below you can see the difference:
While the skit is still whispy, you can see it much better on the black back drop than the white. It took me a great deal of time to re-photograph and adjust all 12 ornaments, but I feel the final effort was well worth it, as it does a much better job of showing the pieces as they truly look:
NOW I am happy! :D
Those of you who read frequently know that I do this type of thing all the time. If I see a better way to do things or even if I just THINK of a better way, then I stop and do things over.
Yes – it takes a lot of time. And YES – it slows me down a bit. But I do believe that this is all part of the TEACHING and LEARNING process that we are a part of, and I find myself playing BOTH parts – teacher and student – when creating new projects such as these. In the end, we all win because (hopefully) others will learn from my mistakes and experiences and their own journey may be a little easier.
Another issue that I wanted to discuss in a little more detail today was the issue of adding a hanger to these beautifully delicate ornaments. Something about me didn’t like the idea of drilling directly into the side of the heads of these graceful creatures. I think it would have truly ruined the look of them. But one of the main functions of these pieces was to be used as ornaments, in which they required some type of hanger or hanging cords.
What to do about that . . . ?
I considered making a very, very small hole and threading thin fishing line through. At least that wouldn’t be too noticeable. But it still left me with the ill feeling of drilling through their faces and the thought of it made me cringe.
Another thought was to drill through their extended hands, but their arms and hands were so delicate that I felt that they would certainly break. I came to the conclusion that the best way to hang them was to bore a hole vertically into their heads. This way it would not be seen or interfere with how they looked.
It would have been much better if this brilliant idea had come to me BEFORE I had cut them out, as it is MUCH easier to drill prior to cutting the delicate pieces. But alas – I did not and now I had to take the risk of drilling 1/16” holes through 1/8” rounded surfaces without breaking through the sides.
Long story short – I was 100% SUCCESSFUL in my efforts! (YAY ME!!!) Not ONE blow out from the bunch!
I had this wonderful, thin gold cord that I got from a place called Home Sew that is 1/32” thick and is a WONDERFUL choice for ornament hangers. It only costs $3.75 per 100 yards and is thin and beautiful and fits into these holes perfectly. You can get the cord HERE. I just knot the loop, pulling tightly to make the knot as small as possible, trim the ends, drag it through a small puddle of glue, and push it into the hole with the end of a toothpick or pin. There you have it!
Only one of the ballerinas needed to be drilled other than the head because of her positioning, but I was able to drill her foot just as successfully:
I really think it makes a beautiful difference in the presentation of these ornaments.
In any case, I have a full plate of work to do today. I have decided (after many requests) that I am going to develop this pattern into a full painting pattern as well (not the simple painting I showed here, but shading and highlighting for the painters) and offer the wood kit of these ornaments. I think they will be enjoyed by many people this way and it will be fun to do.
I appreciate all of your comments and encouragement on my projects. I have been really working hard and I do read them all throughout the day. I have been waiting until evening or morning to respond however, because otherwise I am typing all day instead of working. :)
I wish you all a fun Saturday and a beautiful weekend! Thank you all again for your support in my journey!
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-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"