One good thing about doing lots of types of creative crafts is that every time I get to do something else, it is new and fresh to me and I am excited about it. I love painting and I love the recent needle artwork that I have been attempting, but I also love creating cool wood things on the scroll saw. There is something that is so calming and peaceful about following a line with a tiny blade to create 'graceful wood'.
It is sometimes difficult to keep up with everything that is going on in my head. I have ideas for so many projects, and often one idea can trigger six others. By the time I complete one thing, I have several other directions that I want to head. While it can be sometimes stressful, it is a good kind of stress. I always find myself thinking ahead to what is next and planning the next project (or two or three!) while I am working on my current one. While it can be overwhelming to some people, I like to look at it as 'job security'. I have said many times before that I doubt that I will ever live long enough to create all the ideas I have. So I have to do what I can when I can and see how far I can get on my ever-growing mental list.
This past week or so I have been working on several new scroll saw projects. I have been busy drawing, and cutting and I have created no less than five new candle trays and three sets of ornaments. These aren't necessarily Christmas ornaments, but they are more suitable for just about any time of the year – including Christmas. They are all of a traditional Damask or Gothic theme. They are similar in style (meaning they will blend with each other nicely) but they are all distinctly different. I find that designing in batches like this seems to be most efficient for me. It is nice to keep my head in one style at a time and it makes drawing and cutting a breeze.
I toyed with the idea of not cutting the ornaments out and just showing a photo of the enhanced line work, but I felt that I would be cheating myself out of the fun of cutting them. After all – to me that is the most fun and relaxing part of the process. There is little thinking involved at that point and I love putting on my cordless headphones and getting lost in the process. Besides, I wanted to use some of these ornaments for my 'Steampunk' themed all-season tree. As a bonus, I feel that I refine my cutting skills with each project I create.
So for the past couple of days, I have been working on cutting the three sets of intricate ornaments. They weren't hard to do (although some were a little more difficult than others) and the day just flew by yesterday. By the time I was finished last night, it was nearly 9pm. I had a nice sized pile of scraps:
. . . and a pile of beautiful ornaments:
I wanted to show the scroll saw photo because people often ask how I cut in my home. As you can see, the mess is really minimal. After a five minute session with the shop vac, everything was once again neat and clean. We keep our clutter to a minimum, which means that counters can be fully cleaned easily and there aren't a lot of little nick-knacks here to collect dust. I really find there is very little airborne dust when cutting this small stuff. It is very easy to control. If I cut bigger stuff (either thicker wood or with a larger blade) and there is more dust created, I just pull the vacuum out more often and give it a quick go-over. It really works.
Today I will be sanding and finishing these pieces, as well as photographing them for the patterns. I also have to do the formal photos for the five candle trays that I showed in snapshots earlier this week. Then on to write the patterns.
We are looking to update the site by the beginning of next week. That way everyone in the USA who is busy for the holiday won't miss anything. I should be posting these eight new patterns by then and Keith will have some new patterns as well.
I received some photos last evening from Curtis Customs (where my car is being renovated) and they are done painting it! I think the color looks amazing!
It is a beautiful red candy three stage paint called Ruby Red. Even though it was red before, this color will look much richer and deeper. It is a awesome red with dark low lights and golden highlights. I am also going to have some black stripes on it in a matte finish, which will contrast beautifully with the glassy red paint. I can't wait to see it done.
I was told that today they are going to be reassembling the car and then hopefully I can pick it up on Saturday or latest on Monday. It has been a long, long winter and the car has been being worked on first with the new top and then with this makeover for over two months. I see many, many beach days ahead for me! I feel as if I have been a prisioner long enough! Show me some sunshine!
I want to wish all of you in America a happy and safe 4th of July weekend. Be safe and be smart and remember that your little furry four legged friends will be frightened of all the noisy fireworks, so try to provide them with a place that is quiet and calm. When I lived in Chicago and Digby, I used to keep them in a quiet room and play some music for them so they weren't as aware of the loud 'pops' and noises from outside. Also – please keep them indoors if possible. As much as we don't like to think of it, there are people that are cruel to animals and think nothing of abusing them. The best way to keep them safe is to keep them in.
I wish you all a fabulous weekend and happy Friday! Have fun and enjoy your time!
-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"