Wednesday, April 29, 2009

It finally happened…

A Eulogy for my Camera

“Oh, Olympus FE-100!  My trustworthy companion of years past.  How I will treasure your countless assists, from capturing installation photos to launching my shops.  How I lament that I shall never again see your digital face. How I wish I could take back all the times I berated your lack of speed when attempting to photograph wiggling toddlers, or cursed your outdated nighttime flash technology.

So long were we together!  Your painted icons scraped off long ago (good thing I memorized your button layout).  I’ll always recall how you constantly demanded to be fed fresh AA batteries, turning up your nose at the rechargables I offered.  Your energy vampirism will be ‘affectionately’ remembered.

But alas, you will zoom no more.  Even your triple blink, that feeble whisper in the dark, has faded.  I never had a chance to tell you just how I felt, or ask you just what on earth that little flower button on your side was supposed to do.

So, dear Olympus, I send you on to with honors to that Great Recycling Box in the Garage.  <sniffle> You will be missed.”


So, yeah.  My camera’s gone and died on me.  Needless to say, this will have some impact on blog and site updating until I can get myself a new one, so bear with me.  I’ve got my eye on one of those Canon Powershots…

Friday, April 17, 2009

Who was General Tso?

Came across this more-interesting-than-most slideshow presentation exploring the origins of “Chinese” food.  It’s a little long, but very informative (and hilarious).

Incidentally, I had General Tso’s Chicken for dinner last night, because when you are testing the mettle of a new Chinese place you’ve found, The General and the egg roll are the standard by which you measure all else.  It needed more mouth searing peppers. less candied fry batter.  It was a drive thru place, though, so at least my expectations weren't terribly high to begin with.

I had always wondered why everywhere I go, all the Chinese restaurants are ‘No. 1’, and why they all seem to order their menus from the same printer.

My favorite part, though, has to be ‘Kung Food’.  Because that is the best. restaurant name. ever.

Thanks to @whimwave and the rest of the Twitterstream for bringing this into my realm of awareness.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Etsy Treasury Feature

I’m proud to be included in this gorgeous Treasury by mermaidencreations.  My stained glass ‘Annette’ is in some fine company!

O, to swim with mermaids…

More Revampage.

This post has nothing to with vampires. Or rampaging.  Or even vampires on a rampage.

I know, I’m disappointed too.

In my last post, I shared my new Super Sereal Banner of Joy and Happiness, and how it’s nicely freshened up my Etsy and Artfire shops.

So this weekend, I continued my revamping spree, and completely redid my main website,  God, did it ever need it.

When I took the Big Leap and started my business in 2006, I knew nothing about website building, and was too poor to hire someone who did.  With the help of Yahoo Sitebuilder AKA Websites for Morons (like me), I managed to put together something that I thought was nice at the time.  Its wasn’t great, but it wasn’t Look-I-Put-A-Blinky-Pink-Heart-On-My-MySpace-Profile either.

Since then, particularly since I’ve joined the online art/craft seller communities, I’ve learned so much more about what I can do and how to improve my look and my sales methods.  I realized my website needed three things:

  • A streamlined, professional look.
  • More pictures.
  • Less of my rambling.  Because you never even noticed i do that, did you? (wink).

With the help of my new banner,, and a few new tricks, I think I’ve made some improvements.

What do you guys think?

radiance new

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

RadianceArt Gets a Makeover!

Apologies are in order for the drop off in posting frequency. I recently started a new job, helping the Census Bureau updating maps and such.

I love me some maps. I’m nerdy like that.

Anyway, it’ll be keeping me pretty busy for a little while, but fear not. Your regularly scheduled programming will resume shortly. Meanwhile, I’ll fill in the gap as best I can.

However, I do have this bit of awesomeness to share.

radiance avatar I recently was lucky enough to win a contest over on kMT Graphic Design (Home of the Etsy Mentor Series, which has lots of useful tips for Etsy sellers). My prize: a custom designed banner and avatar for my Etsy Shop.

I am so happy with this! My shop needed something more than the random bit of glass I had thrown up there. A banner attracts attention to your shop, and gives your customers a feel of professionalism to associate with you business and, by extension, what you are selling. And we all know how a important branding can be. The timing for this could NOT have been better.

kMT has a great system in place for learning about your artistic tastes and your needs. She’s open to your suggestions and is very easy to work with! And the final result came out even more gorgeous than the picture I had in my head. That’s when you know its good!

So go check out my shop’s new look! I’ll wait here…

And if you are thinking of going Tim Gunn all over your shop, kMT has some nice deals for custom work over at her place.

(I’d go to Red Lobster with him any day.)

Friday, April 3, 2009

Oh, Your Majesty…you shouldn’t have…

Author’s Disclaimer:  This post is in no way an indication of a specific political leaning or rabid endorsement of any politician on my part.  Republicans, Democrats, Monarchist figureheads—I think they are all equally hilarious.


I know the big thing right now is how Michelle Obama managed to touch the Queen and live to tell about it (not to mention she was wearing <insert J. Crew dress here>.)

But indulge me for my belated preoccupation with this:

“During their private meeting, President Obama and first lady gave the queen a personalized iPod with video footage of her 2007 visit to Washington and Virginia. She was also given a rare songbook signed by composer Richard Rodgers.
In return the queen and her husband, Prince Philip, gave the Obamas a signed portrait of themselves”

That’s right.  Obama pulled out an upgrade to the Queen’s Apple gadgetry stash, thoughtfully preloaded with a playlist of sing-along showtune classics.

And she countergifted with her autographed headshot.  The same gift she gives everybody, even the ones who don’t park their armor-clad presidential Cadillacs in her way.

Come on, your Majesty.  My grandmother does better than that, on a way smaller budget.  I mean, you know the guy is looking for a dog for his kids.  Give him one of your spare corgis or something.

If that wasn’t enough, they then adjourned for a World Leader’s Recess and Snacktime in the Picture Gallery (presumably full of more pictures of the Queen), where the Queen proceeded to feed everyone 

“…champagne, wine and canapes of chicken with zucchini on skewers, mini Cornish pasties, smoked quail eggs, foie gras and tiny rolls of duck filled with melon.”

Melon filled duck rolls? Zucchini on skewers?  Hey, I just flew halfway across the globe to see your house and give you an iPod, but you know what I could really go for right now?  A mini pasty!  At least someone over at Downing Street had the bright idea to call Jamie Oliver in for dinner service.

Note to self:  if ever invited to Buckingham Palace, stop off at McDonald’s first.

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart M - Th 11p / 10c
Moment of Zen - Hello!!!
Daily Show Full Episodes Economic Crisis Political Humor

Etsy FEST April Givaway

Some nifty springtime earrings by Tammy Bowman of Inner Muse Jewelry.  They remind me of Easter candy. I feel compelled to lick them.

Just to check, you know.

Click the picture to find out how you can WIN these!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

So much inspiration…

…so little time.

Although I possess the ability to sew, it’s not a skill that I exercise as often as others.  There is something about it that wears at my patience.  Yes, the person who spends hours building windows out of hundreds of individual cut bits of glass or crocheting stitches by the thousands doesn’t find her patience tried until there's a Singer involved.

Don’t think about it too hard.

Even so, my packrat mentality won’t allow me to throw old clothes away.  That fabric might be good for something later. While I don’t like sewing from scratch as much, I quite enjoy using a seam ripper and scissors to destroy something, then put it back together.  (One of my favorite Simpsons episodes is the one where Marge makes like 5 different outfits out of her one discount pink Chanel suit.  I only wish I were half that skilled). 

I’ve recently lost a bunch of weight, so my rip-up clothing pile has gotten substantially larger in proportion.  Here’s where the fat jeans have been going:


Hmmmm…I’m gonna need more jeans.

I have also recently inherited a well-used and pre-threaded serger (Thanks Mom!).  2 needles and tiny scissors to do my bidding at the press of a button.  If I can just keep them in a straight line.  I’m working at that.

So, with all this in mind, here’s what I’ve been coming across via the CRAFT blog March Mending Month Series lately:

Men’s Dress Shirt Refashions by CleverGirl

sweater tutorial
Resize an Old Sweater by Julie-Bird
vest diargram
Thrift Store Revamp--Ugly Sweater to Bodice by Hannah
Tourniquet Patch by Turkey Feathers

Now would be a good time to clean out my closet, wouldn’t you agree?