And the winner is…

Monica! Three little gocco prints will soon be speeding to your mailbox.

And here y’all thought I might have forgotten about the giveaway. :) Unfortunately, my lack of posting is due not to forgetfulness but rather to an incredibly overwhelming amount of work and stress at The Day Job. Man, I keep having all these good ideas — some of which even get to the half-finished stage — for my blog + shops, but it’s just not happening. Am reminded that perfection is not the goal, one person cannot do everything, etc., but even scaling down my expectations still leads to the conclusion that something has to go.

Sooo, with the exception of a possible shop update with some original drawings (one of the half-finished projects mentioned), I don’t think there will be much activity on Jupiterbuttons until June 29 or 30, after my conference is over. This will also keep me from complaining about staying at working until midnight, people who tell me after the final program is posted that they won’t be here at the time they’re scheduled to talk, people who remind me that I’ve entirely forgotten about their poster, and stuff like that.

My last conference.

Ever.

I can do this, right? 

Gocco goodies.

These are other bits of goodness for the new shop…three new gocco prints!

 The Water Jar.

The Perfect Chair.

Tall Brown Boots.

They are from a series I’m calling “From the Sketchbook” that involves me choosing some ink doodles, enlarging them, and adding a dotted background. I do like dots. (And I obviously like series as well.)

The first round invovles the chair, the water jar, and the boots, but I plan to add others and print these in some different color combinations. But be warned: I’m doing relatively small sets (18-20), and once a color combo sells out I won’t reprint it. There has to be something special about the one you get, right?

I still have to put together a 150 page booklet before I can go home today (and I’ve got, like, 10 pages done so far), so I’m signing off. Thank you for all your input so far and for the new shop love — I am so happy that it’s finally up and running!

New shop + giveaway!

So perhaps I should have considered the fact that an insanely busy/stressful week at work is not the best time to open a new shop. Hindsight is always so good, no?

But I persevered, and here it is! I’m waiting to add the gocco prints until tomorrow, but all the new giclee prints are up. Lots of originals are also waiting in the wings and be added in future weeks.

About the giclees…I know that they are a bit more expensive than you might be used to, but the quality is really very, very nice. (Much nicer than you’ll get from someone printing them out at home, unless that person has a massive and expensive professional-grade printer.) I really don’t like to pay for a “print” that obviously came from someone’s Staples-variety HP printer. So, I paid a bit more for something that I think it good quality, and I’m asking my customers to pay a bit more as well. I think you’ll be more satisfied in the long run.

Now, about that giveaway. I only have one of each print on hand right now and want to order more, but before I do so I need some feedback as to which ones are most popular. So, if you will leave me a note by June 18 saying what your TWO favorite prints are, I’ll put your name in the hat to win a sample set of my three new gocco prints. I was going to put up a photo but it didn’t turn out very well, so you’ll have to wait until tomorrow to see what they look like. But trust me — they’re really cute!

Lion and Lamb

Wolf and Deer.

Sealion and Penguin.

Starfish.

The Pretty Rock.

Seaweed.

Barnacles.

Oo(u)ps.

At around 7:15 am this morning, I became furious with UPS. My box of new business cards was due to arrive yesterday but didn’t seem to have been delivered, so I went online to check the tracking record. It said that they were left in the garage at 4:32 pm the previous day. This seemed ridiculous because a) there were people home at the time, and b) the garage is a silly place to leave things, given the layout of my parents’ house. I went outside, looked around very thoroughly, and talked with every member of the family before concluding that UPS had lost yet another package, which would result in quite a bit of cost, time, and inconvenience in addition to postponing the opening of my new Etsy shop.

I was still plotting my angry email when I walked down the garage stairs to get in the car and noticed a box sitting on top of a shelf at the foot of the stairs.

 A box addressed to me. Containing my business cards.

Admittedly, it was a very bizarre place to leave something and I don’t know why no one heard the doorbell. But there it was. In fact, it had even been there since yesterday afternoon at 4:32 pm when I walked up the stairs to go into the house.

The moral of the story: check ALL the facts before getting mad. I am so glad that I didn’t pick up the phone and call some poor customer service representative first thing this morning!

(The second moral: clean up the garage so that it’s more obvious when someone has left something new in there.)

It’s beginning to look a lot like…June?

When I woke up this morning, it was snowing. The flakes were big and fat and there weren’t that many of them, so I thought that our little storm would pass quickly.

Wrong.

When I got to work, it looked like this.

And then an hour later, it looked like this.

I even saw a snowplow.

The inland northwest is a weird, weird place.

……

Shop update: assuming that the snow doesn’t delay everything, UPS should be dropping my new business cards off today. So I am looking at Thursday, June 12, as Grand Opening Day for the new shop.

Finally!

 

More thoughts about stuff.

In another fit of productivity, I spent several recent evenings sorting through a number of boxes of my stuff that have been living in the parents’ basement for the last few years. Yes, sorting. And here I thought I was done with that for a while.

IF YOU ARE MY MOTHER, please stop reading now. I will talk with you about this when you get home.

Is she gone?

Okay.

There aren’t any huge secrets, but it’s best if I whisper that some of the things that I have been sorting through are old sketchbooks, old paintings, and journals. Mum doesn’t care so much about the journals, but she gets rather upset when I get rid of art. The big problem with old art, however, is that it can be, well, big. Big canvasses, fat sketchbooks, large quantities. (If I ever doubt that I am naturally driven to draw, remind me about the piled + piles of sketchbooks that I sorted through.)

Now, you must understand that I have not been throwing things away willy-nilly. In fact, in a burst of eco-consciousness I have been trying very hard not to throw anything away that can be recycled, as the three large boxes of recyclables will attest. No, I have been flipping through every page of every sketchpad and journal and tearing out a few drawings here and there for keeping or re-sale. The rest is separated from the metal binding and placed in a box.

When I was young and a prolific reader of artist biographies, I had dreams that someday someone would want to write a biography about me and would ask to see all my piles of old sketchbooks to evaluate my artistic development. He or she would flip through some drawings c. 1992 and say, “Aha! I can see the threads of your genius beginning even now,” and select 8 or 9 pieces (titled Early Works) for the introduction. You know, the part of the book that includes cute childhood photos and interviews with aging teachers about how I was The Best Art Student Ever.

Hey, we have all have dreams like this, right?

Anyhow, as the recycling pile grew higher and the to-keep pile increased a few at a time, some of those dreams died. It’s for the best, but it was still a little sad. And don’t even get me going about all the old journals that can/should never see the light of day but which I still miss a little — like pulling a few heart strings out of many and laying them gently in a musty box.

And so, after the trauma of getting rid of so much Old, I am again resolved not to replace it with very much New and thus have to repeat the process in a few years.

Oh, and I am resolved to start scanning a lot more stuff. Flickr is our friend.

And I suggest that, if you must endure this process yourself, it is very helpful to play a movie in the background (preferably a kind of silly one) so that you distract yourself from reading every single journal page and getting all mopey. Distraction is not a bad thing, you just have to know when and where to apply it.

Have a good weekend, all. Auntie Paula gets to puppy-sit on Saturday, so I know that mine will be fun. :)

My thrifty husband strikes again.

I realize that I haven’t had any thrifting posts for a long time. This is partly due to the fact that I am trying to cut down on accumulation but also — and more importantly — to the fact that the baton has been passed to husband. Seriously, people, the man comes up with much better stuff than I ever did. I admit that he’s not scrounging the housewares section for cast off Heath ceramics, but his fortune in clothing + accessories knows no bounds. Recent finds in our [backwoods, poverty-stricken] local thrift stores have included shirts by Christian Dior and Brooks Brothers, suit jackets by Brooks Brothers and Barney’s, Diesel jeans, and a pair of 7 for All Mankind jeans (for $2!). Most of these fit him, and the ones that don’t he plans to resell for a tidy profit.

Yesterday, however, he made a little thrifting pilgrimmage to Coeur D’Alene and came back with what we think is his best find yet. And he gave it to ME.

The magic letters.

The magic tag.

The grand total? $10.

Our best thrifting find ever. 

I love this man.

Finally, some gocco.

Lest you think that I never make anything anymore, I have proof of progress. I finished another big big project a few weeks back but cleverly didn’t take any photo evidence, so let’s just say that gocco’d cd cases look awesome but 200 (x 2 colors) is a lot. And they take up a lot of space while drying.

 The water jar (preview).

I printed all of these last Saturday but ran out of screens + bulbs before finishing the last one (the boots). They are all part of a series titled “From the sketchbook” that will be going into the new shop.

The water jar (preview).

And speaking of the new shop, I am expecting my business cards and packaging supplies to arrive any day now, so as soon as my screens and bulbs show up and I finish the last print I will be finally ready to go. Oh yeah, and I have to take some photos. Gar. It seems like there’s always one more thing to do. But I think that I can tentatively look at the middle of next week (the 11th or 12th, maybe?) as Grand Opening time.

The perfect chair (preview).

And yes, there will be a drawing for you to enter. You know I love drawings.

The perfect boots (preview).

Anyhow, I am very excited to show you photos of the final pieces in a few days. I am very pleased with how these turned out, since they are almost exactly the way that I wanted them to look. And we all know that that doesn’t happen very often. :)

The puppy party.

I should warn you that this post is the blog equivalent of showing someone all the photos you took on your trip to Istanbul. You know, the one where to you snapped pics of everything, including that cute restaurant where you ate on Thursday night? But seeing as I know that the fam wants to see photos of the new pup, everyone else is invited to look at as many or as few as you want to. :)

(The black and white puppy is Alice, my sister + brother-in-law’s new border collie / blue heeler cross, and the brown and white dog is Sabina, our papillon. The setting is a little barbecue we had at their place on Sunday afternoon.)

alice 1

Hooray for soft puppy tummies!

alice 3

Alice = romping joyfully through the yard.
Sabina = planted by the meat.

alice 4

Can we be friends?

alice 5

Please stay on your side of “the line.”

alice 6

Whhhhhyyyyy won’t cousin Sabina play with me?

alice 7

Time for a little walk in the country.

alice 8

Beautiful views (+ ticks) are free.

alice 9

Alice meets the neighbors.

alice 10

Sabina = easily perturbed when someone blows on her ears.

alice 11

Mutual annoyance.

alice 12

When Bean lagged too far behind, Josh would tap her (gently) on the rear with his stick.

alice 13

Yes, my dog is eating her hostess’s food.

alice 14

Cousins!