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1  MORE ART, LESS CRAFT / More Art, Less Craft: Completed Works / Birdgirl - digital illustration on: September 06, 2007 04:04:31 PM
I think her name is Ava-Lu (or Loo, I don't know how you spell it). Possibly Aveline, but maybe that's what it's short for anyway? Although if your name was as pretty as Aveline I doubt you'd shorten it.

I have so many ideas for paintings popping around my head, but since I'm just back to school I haven't (and probably won't) have as much time. But I was doing some sketching earlier, and ta-da! I think I'm still going to add a background of some sort - maybe even some wallpaper type or something. But for now, Ava-Lu says hi.
2  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Get Product and Website Opinions / Help me price my paintings? on: September 01, 2007 12:56:33 PM
I'm hoping to sell some of my illustration-style originals soon but I'm having a bit of trouble with the pricing. My artwork can be seen at my blog (link in signature) but there are two in particular that I'm thinking of putting up for adoption, if you will, and they're my paintings Elspeth and Sukey.

They're mixed media (oils, ink and watercolours too, in the case of Sukey) on 6x6 canvas board (not actual canvas, it's a thin, hard, textured board).
Now, I'm having trouble figuring out how much I should ask for them, mostly because my venue for selling is Etsy, and thus in American dollars. I live in Ireland, and the dollar is pretty weak against the euro so what sounds expensive in $ is really not much at all in , but I also know that I can't charge too much. I think too that the fact it's on canvas board (rather than canvas or something) could work against me, and they're pretty small too (they're petite and a nice size, but I just worry people might think I'm overcharging) - but, I don't think it should be valued at the worth of the materials, but at the worth of the artwork.

The thing is, I love what I make and I want to see it go for a price that does it justice. I was thinking before that I'd just set a price that I could bear to give them away at, but at the same time, that might be too high and I would also like to sell.

So, I'd really appreciate some opinions on prices, in USD or euro (preferably USD really, because that's what I'll be selling them in). Shipping would be about $5 too on top of that (maximum, I wouldn't want to charge any more but because the boards are light enough that should cover it). And Etsy take a 3.5% cut (before shipping is added) and Paypal take some sort of cut too.

Even if I decide not to sell the two above, it's a good indication of my style and the size of my pieces, so opinions are welcome across the board (if you want to suggest things for other pieces on my blog that's more than appreciated too!)

Thanks so much for any help!
3  IMAGE REPRODUCTION TECHNIQUES / Stenciling: Completed Projects / Pixellated Link old-skool SNES shirt...*FINISHED + now with Action Shots! pg 4* on: August 19, 2007 06:42:12 PM
The first thing I have to say is that if my boyfriend is inadvertantly or otherwise happening through my Craftster posts, that he should look away now or I will be very disappointed...

And here's some space...

Okay. When I first started getting really into Craftster, I was rather tentatively Linked (har har, pun will make sense later) to this by the boy, with heavy hints and a "you like crafts, don't you?" (bless him  Grin) and a mention of preferring Link to Mario thrown in there for good measure too. Our anniversary is in just over a week so I've been working on it, hopefully to surprise him. This is what I've come up with:

Now, I'm looking at this critically because it's not for me so:
This is my first time doing anything like this so of course it's nowhere near perfect. There are two small smudges of green at the side (although they're not really noticable or a big deal when it hangs, I think, like it would on a person), my lines are all blotchy and crap, and worst of all, you can see the pencil marks through the fabric paint, and I'm guessing they're there for good. The design has been heat set and put through the wash (I didn't turn it inside out because I needed the grid to wash out, plus it got rid of excess blotchiness, although some of the brown on top is kind of faded slightly or something, but it's not too noticable).

Here's a close-up of the design - and how noticable to lines are close-up (and my crappy paint job  Embarrassed) haha my ego is dying...don't laugh at me, I tried really hard and the reason those lines are so heavy is because I made a mistake first time. They're done with pencil.

So, my question is, and I'd REALLY appreciate some help or responses - what do I do? Do I give it like this, even though it's not perfect? I don't want to give him something craply homemade. I want to give him something enviable and awesome that he can be proud of. Do I make it again? I don't know how I wouldn't get the lines in, the grid is a pain to draw and it's hard to get right (I actually put a few squares in the wrong place but I think I covered pretty well), not to mention it would cost me (the shirt was 7.50, and I'm really broke). Do I try another coat of fabric paint over it? Wash it again?

Please, I'd love some honest opinions - while I don't think this is disastrous for a first attempt, I want to know is it good enough to give to my boyfriend? Would you wear something with all those imperfections? What would you think if you saw someone wearing it?

Thanks for any input, it's really appreciated.
4  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Discussion and Questions / Do you think this would be a good idea for a thread? on: August 19, 2007 05:50:33 PM
Heh, weird topic I know.
Other forums I've been on have had "What Are You Wearing?" threads, where you can post pictures of your outfits, or ask opinions on them or whatever. I can see how this fits into craftiness - hey, there's an art to putting together something that looks good! - even if the clothes aren't handmade (although I suspect many of you employ those awesome skills) but at the same time maybe it's not crafty enough for a craft website  Tongue I see it as sort of akin to the hairstyles topics, but I dunno, I can see both sides.
I thought I'd throw it out there anyway - what do you think?
5  MORE ART, LESS CRAFT / More Art, Less Craft: Completed Works / CD cover I designed (Bright Eyes mix) on: August 19, 2007 05:29:05 PM
This is a year or two old but I don't think I've posted it before.
I'm not a super-huge Bright Eyes fan but I like a couple of their/his songs, and I said I'd burn what I had for a girl in my class. Here's the resulting cd cover I made for the mix:

^ front cover.

^ back cover.

Sorry if the photos aren't great, they're all I have. It's collaged, made with crepe- and other various-papers, and silver ink pen (and glue, obviously).

I couldn't give the original away in the end - I ended up scanning and printing a copy, which turned out nowhere near as nice so I ended up collaging over that again too, heh. I can't remember the tracklisting (my iTunes and iPod have both since deserted me) but I don't think it had any bearing on the design. It's hardly fine art but I thought it was pretty cute.

I wanted to be a CD-cover-designer for the longest time afterwards  Cheesy
6  MORE ART, LESS CRAFT / More Art, Less Craft: Completed Works / Sukey, Whose Title Is Under Construction *EDIT: New painting added!* on: August 15, 2007 06:20:37 PM
*Scroll down for the finished Elspeth!*

This is part of a sibset* with another painting (the as of yet unfinished "Ghostly Elspeth, Who Is, Unfortunately, Dead") - at first I really disliked it but now I'm really happy with how it turned out, in the end. I'm in love with names and I'm compiling a big list of my "old-fashioned" favourites for just this kind of work (since girls are all I draw I might as well name them!). I think I've decided on Sukey for this one (as in, "Polly put the kettle on, etc etc, Sukey take it off again, etc etc") - Elspeth was always definite but I wasn't so sure about this one, so it's liable to change. I'm still working on a title (maybe "Sukey, When She Was More Alive" or something. Although Elspeth is definitely dead, and seems aware of it in her portrait - Sukey doesn't...I'll keep you updated.)

No scans yet, if I can get a good one tomorrow I'll upload it.

Close up with Ghostly Elspeth so far:

Sukey is very much mixed media, more so than Elspeth - watercolour background, oil painted portrait, ink (painted, not a pen - oils are so difficult) outlines.

Should I add something to the background? I'm not sure if I like it simple or if it's missing something - I wanted it a bit like an old fashioned portrait in front of that mint and grey "wallpaper". What do you think? Maybe I'll just give the wallpaper some more definition or something, or maybe give her a shadow? Or should I just leave it?
There's some progress shots on my blog too, if you're interested.
Sorry for the rambling, heh.

What do you think?  Smiley

*I picked up this word from baby name forums  Lips sealed I mean pair...
7  MORE ART, LESS CRAFT / More Art, Less Craft: Completed Works / Red Riding Hood (illustration-style painting) on: August 11, 2007 04:44:52 PM
I'm not sure what to call this...any ideas?

(crappy scan, sorry)

Pencil, watercolours and ink on an 8x8" canvas board (that I think is only meant for acrylics and oils, but it gives the watercolours an unusual look, I think). I usually bog things down with photos, so I'm just posting the one two (Tongue) here this time, but there are more on my blog if you're interested.

I'd love to know what you think!
This is the first finished piece like this I've done in a long time (maybe ever! It's my first time using one of those boards anyway and I haven't painted in forever) and the first piece I've ever really considered selling or making prints of so I'd love to hear any feedback and, if it's okay for me to ask, if you think it's saleable (don't worry mods, I'm not soliciting! Just asking for opinions, I hope that's okay). But mostly, just what you think of the artwork!

Thanks for looking!  Cheesy
8  IMAGE REPRODUCTION TECHNIQUES / Stenciling: Discussion and Questions / Smudges, bane of my existance on: August 07, 2007 07:11:11 PM
So I've just started stencilling a tshirt as a present for my boyfriend, but I've already got two small green smudges on the off-white/grey shirt. Help?

Firstly, is there anything that'll remove it? I didn't want to try as they're quite small and I don't want to spread them and smudge even more, but if you have any tips, please share. They're probably already dry since they're so small though.

I'm using Deka Permanent fabric paint (like this). You're supposed to iron it on the opposite side for three minutes when it's dry - I haven't done this yet, if it makes any difference.

Other options are, I guess, finding an acrylic match (which will be so impossible because of the shirt colour, and probably look terrible because of it too) and painting over it, or making the smudges into small designs (which would probably ruin my big design). On that note, anyone have any Link (old-skool SNES) related small designs I could do?

I can't afford to start again (the shirt cost 7.50 and the tiny paint pots cost 2.50 each) and I don't have the time either. Any help is MUCH appreciated. I'm really crestfallen, I wanted to make him a really nice, professional-looking present  Sad
9  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Discussion and Questions / Using metallic thread is like kicking Mr T in the face... on: August 06, 2007 09:41:55 AM
...you know it would look really cool, if it was physically possible.

How do you tame the beast? As I'm sure you all know, it seperates into about 12 different wiry pieces when you just look at it, let alone use it. Maybe it's easier with cross-stitching? I have some really pretty pale gold, silver and bronze threads and I'd probably like to use them sometime.

Any tips? I was thinking of smothering them in hair gel to keep the thread together, but, you know, sticky.
10  REUSING/RECYCLING/RECRAFTING / What the heck can I do with THIS? / What to make with Pokemon Trading Cards and Top Trumps cards? on: August 06, 2007 09:24:00 AM
So I just found a stack of old Pokemon Trading Cards, as well as a deck of LotR Top Trumps cards, and thought I'd like to make something cool for my boyfriend. The Pokemon cards are ATC size, thin, shiny-ish card paper, with a cartoon of the Pokemon at the top and their moves and info at the bottom. Like so:

(image taken from the internetz, I don't have these cards)

The Top Trumps cards are slightly longer and thinner but are much the same. Like so:

I've never played the Top Trumps game, although I guess I could just give it to him as is. And maybe I should save the Pokecards as collector's items or something (but all the ones I have are boring and ordinary so I doubt they'd ever be worth much).

Ideas I had so far were collaging some kind of placemat (fairly boring) or making notebooks (collaging a big premade one or using a card each for the front and back cover and making mini-ones myself), but I don't really want to do the notebook thing because I gave him a Moleskine for his birthday and I figure he doesn't need THAT many notebooks. Other ideas could be to cover the Pokecards in clear plastic or something and try and make a bag for me, like one of those magazine bags, if I ever learn how to use our ancient sewing machine. The Pokemon cards are way cooler, for the record, and I'd be more inclined to leave them whole - the LotR cards I could easily cut up for the character pictures, but eh, dunno if it's worth it either. Another idea could be a magnetic noticeboard, but I don't know how to go about that and how expensive it would be to make and get the materials.

Anyway, any other ideas?
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