Fire In the Soul

Fire In the Soul
"Fire In the Soul" From the Merka series in The Elves of the Woodland Realm

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Male Archer Elf


Boys sometimes get the raw end of the stick when it comes to the fantasy genera in art and photography. At least little boys do. There are all kinds of photographers that do fairy photo shoots but they are super feminine which most boys don't want. Not all but most.  Hence this photo shoot.


I made his tunic, quiver and arrows. The pants were his, the bow I purchased online at Black Bear Haversack Trading Post several years ago. The leather gauntlets I purchased from a fellow Etsy shop Iron Woods Shop.

I have plans for a dragon shoot, a Lost Boys shoot and a tribal shoot this year using some of my tribal pieces out of my Etsy shop.
              




Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Trying Something New. Again.

Remember how I had posted a few weeks ago about how I had decided to drop a few things? Well, this post is about all of that. Please bear with me on this. I will throw in a few new images I have been working on. Like this one. An old image I finally got around to post processing.


Now, let me just say, I love what I do, all that I do. I have such a huge world in my head that I want to express visually but not the time to do it, and the need to make a little bit of money to live. Because I needed to make some income I decided to start on this journey of owning a small business. Fast forward 8 years later and we have my predicament that has lead me to drop some of the things that I want to do.

As a one woman show, I just can't do everything that is involved with running a business. At least, not anymore. Making my art/products, photographing them, listing them, packaging them when they sell, customer service that's involved, offering photography as a service, photographing those clients, post processing those images, keeping my website up to date, keeping up all of the social media sites 6 of them to be exact, custom orders, magazine articles to write, art shows to vend, keeping up with licensing and insurance, taxes.... the list goes on and on. I have to let something go.

Butterfly Fairy Crown

Boho Gypsy Stacking Bracelets

Black Jewel Crown

2018 Spring Line, Rainbow Roses

Mixed Media Dragonfly Writing Journal

Mixed Media Seahorse Writing Journal

Lion Decanter
I am scaling back just about everything. I am going to wean myself off of making jewelry. Once what I have made has sold, I will not be making any more. I am also going to pull away from steampunk in general. It seems that the trend is fading and that only the original hardcore steampunkers are still steaming on. But the high demand isn't there anymore so it is something I can let go. Again, once my fascinators are gone, I will not be making more to fill my shop.

Steampunk Fairy Necklace



Steampunk Fascinator


I am also not going to be making fascinators in general any longer, even fairy ones. I will be sticking with crowns and headdresses for the fairy folk and gypsies out there.

Blue Gypsy Headdress
Butterfly Queen Crown
























And last but not least, with a sad heart, I am going to be pulling back from photography. I will not be offering standard portraiture, family photography, event photography or any service of that nature. If someone wants a fairytale shoot, I will take those clients, but otherwise my photography will be a means to get my art out into the world and not to make money.

I am also not going to be posting on all of my social media outlets. I will be sticking with Instagram, Pinterest and Facebook. I am also going to be closing my website, especially since it focuses on photography packages for potential clients. I will use my blog as the main resource for getting info to customers and clients.

I will be doing some different things, like sharing a coop type space here locally. I figured I'd rather store my stuff where people can see it and potentially buy it instead of storing it in a storage space in a box.



I will still be doing my mixed media art as well. When I get a wild hair to do it anyway. I am unsure about doing art shows anymore though. Still on the fence about that. The ones that I think I would do well at are HUGE and the fees are really high. Which cash flow doesn't allow for right now. Which brings me to my next dilemma. 

I know the old saying is true, "You have to spend money to make money." But the one thing I told myself I would never do is dip into personal funds for business. And I have stuck to my guns with that. But my business is at a point that if I want to grow, I will need to hire out some of the work that needs to be done. I am going to be taking on an intern. She starts this week. She just wants to learn, so win win for everyone. I hope that one day I can pay someone for social media help and marketing. And have a sales rep. That would be super helpful a free up so much of my time to do what I need to be doing, which is creating.

So, I leave you with this. I will be posting way more since I don't have a website to keep up with. And hopefully that turns into more art and beautiful images to make the world a happier place.



Snow Fairy Crown

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

St. Patricks Day 2018

 This year we decided to do a Tolkien themed party. Celtic and Hobbits just seem to fit together nicely. To make a long story short, my plan was to host the party outside, but it all of a sudden turned VERY cold the weekend we were having the party. So we moved our pallet floor table we made inside to the living room.






 We moved all of the furniture out of the living room and placed the table in the center of the floor on my wool rug. It worked out so well and no one froze. I used some tartan fabric scarves as runners down the center of the pallet table to add more texture and color to the table. I had also purchased several random candle sticks at various thrift and antique stores, gave them a coal of black chalk paint with a gray wash to add age and scattered them down the center of the table among the scarves and pallet boxes my husband made me that I keep for random things like this.


My mom helped me with food prep. She made the savory I made the sweet. I made my yummy and boozy Irish cupcakes which consist of a Guinness Stout chocolate cupcake, filled with a Jameson Irish Whisky custard filling, topped with a Baileys Irish Cream buttercream icing. Hobbit seed cakes, vegan Lembas bread, baked brie with apricot preserves, blackberry tarts, and mini berry cakes with whipped cream icing.

Fresh fruit and bread for the herbed butters and honey butters.

The baked brie and the berry cakes.

The extra seed cakes and berry cakes that wouldn't fit on the main table.

Irish Cabbage Rolls my mom made.

Fresh veggies and fruit, with several varieties of cheese.

The berry cakes.

Lembas bread

Hobbit seed cakes.

Irish cupcakes.

Blackberry tarts.

The making of the cupcakes. They are baked with beer and then brushed with it.

The "family size" whiskey bottle.
 Every year we always do a party favor. And every year I outdo myself. This year was no different. I designed a logo based on the pub sign I made several years ago and had real, professional pint glasses made. Everyone was able to take one home to remember the evening.






Every year my husband brews a couple of different craft beers for everyone as well. I get to design the labels! I don't really like beer but I sure do like to make stuff. This year he did an American Brown Ale and a Cream Ale. They were all gone by the end of the night so I guess they were good.



All in all it was another successful St. Patrick's Day party at The Griffin House. Éirinn go Brách!

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Autumn Water Photo Shoot

Well, I think this is a record for me. I actually made it less than a year between blog posts, lol!

Not that I haven't been doing anything. As a matter of fact I have been SUPER busy. Too busy actually. So much so that I have decided to drop a few things. But more on that later. I wanted to get these images out there from my first in water photo shoot.
























My goal with this shoot was 3 fold. 1. I wanted to do a shoot with sisters. 2. I wanted to do my version of a milk bath shoot and 3. I had new fairy crowns and necklaces I needed to photograph for my Etsy shop. I feel like I accomplished that.


I had done some research on milk baths and water shoots. Even though I like milk bath images, they are very popular which is not my thing. If it is trendy, I don't want to do it.
The first thing I did was purchased a kiddy pool, one that would fit 3 kids at the least. Then I had to figure out what I wanted to use to color the water. Since I knew I wanted a sort of Medieval, Lady of the Lake vibe, I wanted the water to look dark, like lake water. Since I do a lot of paper crafting and coffee/tea dying of paper and fabric, I figured, why not use coffee to tint the water. So, off to the grocery store I went to buy a couple of jars of instant coffee. I collected my coffee, my greenery and my grapevine from my stash and headed to the back yard.





I used stools and chairs, and whatever else I could find to hold the sides of the pool up until it was full of water since it wasn't a blowup pool.
Even though it was fall and the weather was warm, I figured the water would be cold. The girls weren't sure about doing this.


I set everything up the day before the shoot. I covered the water with a black tarp to keep bugs and junk out as well as hopefully warm the water some.


The water was freezing and the middle sister just couldn't do it. So I only got shots of the oldest and the youngest in the water. I did manage to get a shot of the 3 of them out of the water that turned out pretty good.





Here are the rest of the final images as well as some of the product shots. The behind the scenes images and product shots are shot with my iPhone.





Blue Jeweled Fairy Crown

Handmade Fairy Crown

Butterfly Fairy Crown


Fairy Necklace can be found here
Concept, all makeup, costumes, accessories, crowns and photography all done by me. I was fortunate to have my son and my mom helping me with the set up and actual shoot.