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Do It Yourself Devitrification Spray

SR002ObI’m always looking for ways to shave costs of running my own art business. Supplies can be expensive. Today I am sharing a recipe and a video I made which shows how to make your own devitrification spray for glass.

Devitrificaton is caused by the growth of crystaline structures within or on glass.  It gives the glass a dull finish.  Sometimes, even though I may coat the glass with devitrification spray, a slumped bottle spoon rest may come out with a dull finish.

One of the ways to control this is by firing the glass at the right temperature and for the right amount of time. Devit occurs above 1350 degrees F. You can reduce the likelihood of it happening by scheduling a fast temperature increase from 1000 F to 1480 F.  You can go as fast as 800 dph.  Suggested hold time should be between 1000 F – 1250F.

The other way to control devit is to use devit spray.  It’s still not guaranteed to prevent devit on all glass. Here’s my video that talks about how to make your own.

For your convenience, I have listed the ingredients you need below the video

Devitrification Spray (large quantity)

One cup Borax

One cup Dawn dish detergent

One gallon distilled water

Small Quantity

OneTsp Borax

One Tsp Dawn

One Cup distilled water

 

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Battling Resistence as an Artist

resistanceA few weeks ago I posted abook review of The War of Art. One of the major things author Steven Pressfield covers in this book is the concept of Resistence.

Resistence is anything which stands in the way of us achieving success  as an artist, writer, actor, you name it. The harder we try to “make it,” the more resistence stands in our way. It is the main reason many creative people give up on pursuing their dreams.

I have been dealing with resistence over the past few weeks. It started when I opted to purchase a store front through artstorefronts.com.  This high end online store option includes not only an online shop you can set up, but the marketing and mentoring needed to help you achieve success. After doing a lot of research, I felt this was an important step for me to take.

It’s not cheap, however, and even though I opted for the least expensive package (with the aim of upgrading later) I still had to put it on my credit card. Then I had to find some way of paying it back. Currently my art sales are not enough to cover it unless I want to drag the process out indefinitely.

I let my husband know I was interested in picking up some extra work. On occasion I have done odd jobs for him through the storage rental business he manages and I have done work for his boss too.

He shared my offer with his boss, Joel and soon Joel had me working on technical letters for him at a pretty good pay rate. The problem is, as often happens with the business, what was supposed to be part time work done on my schedule soon became a monster with crisis work and priorites being shifted. I’ve gone from putting out one brush fire after another as these letters get scheduled to print for various purposes and technical issues between the letter coding and the systems arise.

As if that’s not stressful enough, Amazon decided to redo their shipping options and notified those selling through Amazon Handmade that we had to set up shipping again, including special templates. I carved out time to do this, but was still in the dark regarding some of the shipping options. It’s all a learning curve. I had left in express shipping and expedited shipping and before long, I had a large spoon rest I had to ship expedited to New Jersy when I really didn’t know what I was doing.  I didn’t realize when I first processed the order that it was to go xxpress shipping so I had to unpackage and credit the shipping label back and do it all over again even having to make a special run to UPS. As of this writing I have deleted express and expedited shipping as an option.  Yes, I can sell more stuff but right now, until I get a better handle on it, I am elminated that option.

The same day I had the express shipping order I also had a request through Amazon Handmade for a return. The postal service managed to break two beach glass and copper wire bracelets. Issuing the return postage label was not as streamlined as it should have been and I had to do some fancy troubleshooting. This problem won’t be resolved until I get the damaged bracelets back and reship some replacements.

This week I also had a board meeting for Uni4artists, and art show to prepare for,  art and craft class scheduling and planning and lastly prep for farmer’s market this Saturday. I had every intention of working on my Artstorefronts shop, however, resistence raised its ugly head.

I am sharing this to show how hard it is to stay focused and do the work needed to achieve one’s goals. This morning my next task in hand is to try to remedy the current messed up letter issue for Joel’s company. I plan to stick to my guns and work on only that and one other thing for Joel today. Then it’s back to my game plan. Resistence will not win out. I’m in it for the long haul.

 

 

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Summer Art Show & Sale, Hickory, NC

flyerjpgJust a reminder that the Uni4artists Summer Art and Show Sale starts this week,  August 18th. Reception is Friday, August 19th from 6-8 pm.

I’ll have some glass artisan gifts, handmade jewelry and some mixed media artwork.  Come out and enjoy local handmade.

The gallery is in Hickory, NC next to McGuires pub. Please share this info with others and help support the arts.

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Inspirational Quote

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Mixed Media Art, I Will Not Chase Rabbits

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Many creative people have trouble focusing in one area because they love experimenting. I am one of them.

“Rabbit chasing” can spread an artist too thin and is also costly. The more areas you delve into, the more expenses, rabbitdrawingCOPYRIGHTequipment, etc., you have
to have and the more items you have to manage.

I recently set a goal to scale back my focus and begin to build up a body of visual art which I can also sell as prints.

Below is the drawing I made with this new goal in mind.

To make this artwork I first drew the picture in pencil (while I sat at the Farmer’s Market) . I wanted the look of a vintage drawing, the kind you see in old primers. I also saw a mixed media technique I was dying to try.  I used Mod Podge to cover the canvas and then used pages from an old phone book which I lay down on the layer of Mod Podge. I deliberately left wrinkles in the paper.

Once this was dry, I tore off some of the paper in spots and applied several washes of acrylic paint. Next, I went around the edges in places with a ink dauber and StazOn brown ink.

I photographed the drawing of the rabbit and then reversed the rabbit image on my computer and printed it out on laser copier paper and then transferred it on with Mod Podge. I used this same process to add the text.

I waited 24 hours for the paper to dry and then wet the paper and rubbed it off.

After letting this dry, I went over the picture with an antiquing gel. The final touch was artist varnish.

I hope to have prints of this artwork available soon and will notify you when they become available.

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Inspirational Quote of the Week

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Uni4Artist Art Show, August 18 – 31

flyerjpgUni4artists, of which I am a member, are having a summer are show and sale. The show runs from August 18-31, 2016.  Items include art and artisan gifts.

The gallery is in Hickory, NC next to McGuires pub. Please share this info with others and help support the arts.

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N081aWhen I cleaned out my mom’s house with my siblings,  I found a collection of leather strips my father had used in his leather making hobbies. I’ve used the leather on occasion to make necklace cord but I suddenly had a brainstorm about another way to use the leather pieces after seeing something on Pinterest.

I used 3 long strips of the leather for the main cord and then cut shorter pieces which I knotted. Then I strung on a variety of my handmade clay beads. I added some copper charms and recycled glass beads which I had hand drilled. The necklace is asjustable and the finished piece has a bohemian southwestern feel.

I also made several sets of earrings which can go with the necklace. These are made from the same leather cord and three different color handmade clay rondelle beads. I wrapped the leather tassle with copper wire and the handmade and antiqued the copper earwires.

Both the necklace and the earrings are available in my Amazon handmade store. I like the necklace so much I may make another.

Leather Fringe Tassel Necklace

Leather Tassel Earrings

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Book Review: The War of Art by Steven Pressfield

war of artWhile on vacation both my son, who is an aspiring writer, and my son-in-law, a professional musician recommended a book call The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles which I promptly ordered and read.

Anyone who wants to reach professional status in the arts, whether it is writing, dance, drama, art or any other creative field will benefit from this book. It’s just 165 pages, however, the advice Pressfield gives is invaluable.

The book is divided into 3 sections or books. Section one (Defining the Enemy). The author devotes this section to talking about resistence, the force within us the prevents many people from realizing their dream. Section two (Combating Resistence: Turning Pro) explains the process of adopting a professional attitude to overcome resistence. Section three (Beyond Resistence, The Higher Realm) covers inspiration and more so that we become more than just a hired “hack”.

Though, as a professional artist and published author, I already knew some of this info such as setting regular hours and pushing back against resistence, Pressfield’s insights are fresh and his advice will definitely help me reach the next level.

If you know anyone seriously considering becoming a professional in the arts, this book is a  must read. I give it 5 out of 5 stars.

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Inspirational Quote of the Week

allow-yourself-to-rest-life-daily-quotes-sayings-picturesAllow yourself to rest. Your soul speaks to you in the quiet moments in between your thoughts.

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