Saturday, October 20, 2012

The Advantages of a Dad Photographer

As some of you know, my husband, Matt, is a mechanical engineer by day and an occasional free-lance dance photographer on the weekends.  Well, one of our youngest daughter's perks is her "payment" for helping Matt out at these photo shoots.   She helps Matt quite a bit setting up the backgrounds and the lights, being a general "go-fer," and helping to suggest poses.  So when we know the person who has "booked Matt's services," so to speak, her bonus is getting a few photos of herself when the other person is changing or getting ready.

Here are a few we squeezed in at Matt's most recent shoot.


She's doing quite well.  But I'm not a proud parent!  ;-)

Heaps of Hugs,

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Bears in All Their Glory

Well, my last post was just a tease, wasn't it?  So today I'll show you what my "Fall-la-la-la-la" show bears actually looked like. 


I was very lucky and they were all adopted quickly.  I suppose that may have something to do with not having any bears available online for over a year and a half (!!). Well, for the sake of my collectors, hopefully that shouldn't happen again.  In fact, if all goes as planned, I'm hoping to join another "Bear Hugs 4 U" show in March.




I know you've already seen Oakley as my show preview bear, but this photo just turned out so much better and more accurate that I thought I would show you him again.  :-)
Heaps of Hugs,

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Sneaky Peeks!!

The "Fall-la-la-la-la" show is just days away now!
My show page is just about finished.

I have boxes, packing materials, and tape.

And all of these little guys are itching to find new homes. 

Although I think you may have seen this fellow, Oakley, above in his preview photo for the show!
If you're interested, you can see the show at .  It opens at 10:00 am (Eastern Daylight time) on this Friday, October 12th and goes through Sunday, October 14th until 8:00 pm.  Until that time, the website has all of the preview photos from the 50 participating artists.
Heaps of Hugs,

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Perhaps there's a Reason that it's Called Magic Tape!

This guy looks like a pretty happy fellow now, doesn't he?  However, in my opinion at least, it wasn't always the case.  A little magic was necessary first!
This is how he looked after he was pretty much "finished."  (Though I still have to wax his nose.)

As you can see, his fur is all higgledy-piggledy.  Yes, that is a technical term!  For those uninitiated with my technical terms, his fur is all over the place and his seams are quite visible.  Sometimes no matter how carefully you lay out your pattern, the fur on the cut pieces will go "this way and that."
Now I was told that he looked cute this way, but I personally prefer a more finished look.  Every bear maker has their preferences and I want my bears to look like their fur grows just like a real bear's fur does.

So with my arsenal of "magic tape" (also known as "Scotch Tape") and a brush, I set to work.  Yes, I use a dog's brush that I bought specifically for the purpose of brushing my bears.

First I dampen the fur and try not to get the backing too wet--we don't want the fabric to stretch funny.  After combing the fur in the direction I want, I then lay piece after piece of tape gently on the fur to hold it in place.

Here he is above with his head "done."  But, as you can see, his body still needs some work.  After more water, more brushing, and LOTS more tape, here's a photo of him below as he waits to dry.  I generally do this procedure in the evening and let the bear sit overnight, or stand as the case may be, until I take off all of the tape.

After removing wads and wads of tape (perhaps I should invest in 3M?) and a quick comb-out, this little bear looks much happier, in my opinion.

I've started doing this technique on almost all of my bears now because I really like the result.  I can't remember where I learned about this, but I have a hunch that it's from Nancy Tillberg.  
This works wonderfully with natural fibers such as mohair and alpaca, however I would guess that it wouldn't work so well with synthetic furs.  I've found though that the nap of synthetic fibers tend to be more "in line" with the grain of the backing rather than on a diagonal as are many mohairs.  Therefore, I haven't felt compelled to try this on one of my Tissavel bears yet.
I suppose I'd better go wax this fellow's nose now.  I always wait to do the waxing until after I'm finished with the water--water spots on noses aren't a happy thing.
Take good care of yourself!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Fall-la-la-la Online Bear Show!

Meet Oakley!!  He's one of the bears I'll have available in the upcoming "Fall-la-la-la" show by "Bear Hugs 4 U."
You can see the preview bears by all of the talented artists by clicking HERE or visiting directly.  The show opens on Friday, October 12th at 10:00 am and closes on Sunday, October 14th at 8:00 pm (Eastern Time Zone).
See you there!!
Heaps of Hugs,