in the studio – advertising and back issues

My business up to this point has been built on word-of-mouth referrals. I decided this year to step it up with some advertising. I’m starting small…small is definitely the key word here. Grabbing someone’s attention with a 125 by 125 pixel ad is not an easy thing to do.

Here’s what I’ve come up with so far, but I’m not sure I’m happy with either one.
be colorful ad

color recipes ad 2

So, which ad grabs your attention? Or do you not like either of them? Leave me a comment and let me know what you think…I can take it. :)

Switching gears here, I pulled a muscle in my back and along my rib cage which had me on pain pills and laying on ice packs most of last week. It happened while exercising. Yes, exercising is dangerous to your health. 😉 When they say if an exercise hurts, to stop doing it…well, I continued on and paid the price. I’m up and around this week, but still moving slow. I managed 6 color mixes yesterday before my back was screaming at me to stop. So, while I am working on finishing up the Kato color recipes ebook, it is slow going.

Other ad ideas

in the studio – getting ready to think pink

Yes, I’m getting ready to think pink. October is almost upon us which means it’s breast cancer awareness month. One of my Etsy teams, The Etsy Angels, raise funds for various causes throughout the year and every October we raise funds for breast cancer organizations. It takes on a new meaning this year as my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer earlier this year and is now cancer free.

I like to have some new pink items each year for the think pink fundraising but hadn’t come up with anything until the other day. Don’t you just love it when inspiration hits? I made some beads several years ago for a group challenge based on a painting that was related to the challenge. This painting really spoke to me and because there is a connection between the painting and breast cancer awareness I’m going to revisit it.

What is the painting I’m talking about? I guess you’ll just have to wait and see what I’m up to. 😉

in the studio – back to the basics

It’s back to the basics with a new line of polymer clay pendants, beads, jewelry, etc. that I’m currently working on. Often, less is more. Basic colors and shapes combined with simple lines give way to a crisp, clean look.

I decided to make the first pendant using the colors from this week’s color palette a week (CPAW).

I’m easing back into production work as I’ve been seriously slacking these past few months. Well, not really slacking…I have been working on color mixes for the polymer clay color recipe ebooks, things for From Polymer To Art magazine (the Orange Issue will be out soon) and the occasional bead here and there.

in the studio – new website

In between the multitude of back to school related errands (how can it possibly be back to school time already?), I’ve been working on my website. I switched webhosts a couple years ago and have never gotten around to setting my website up again. It’s been on my to do list, but we all know how that goes…..yeh, I’ll get to it sometime.

Well, now seemed like as good as time as any. My eyes are cross-eyed from looking at the computer screen and I’m not anywhere near finished. Note to self…..probably should make an eye doctor appointment.

Here’s a sneak peak at the new look. Of course, it may end up totally different before I’m finished. 😉
Crafts by Chris new website

Do you like it? Is it it too stark? What about the graphics? Leave me a comment and let me know what you think. Yes, I really want to know.

in the studio – color mixing

The month of June was spent running the teen around….driver’s ed., license, test-driving a car, licensing said car, job application and interview, second job interview and drug test. Then there was time spent looking at houses with the daughter….they should be closing on their house sometime yet this month, so moving them is also on the agenda.

Needless to say, my studio has been neglected. However, I am determined to get some work done in between the madness this month. This week I’m working on the FIMO fall/winter 2011-12 polymer clay color recipe ebook.

My work area was a mess before I started…….then I create a bigger mess when mixing colors as you can see in the photo below. (click on the photo for a larger view)

On the far left hand side at the bottom of the photo is my Pantone color guide for matching colors. Next to that is paper for jotting down the color mixes as I make them and some cured color chips. Then there are some skinner blends which I will talk more about in my Let’s Talk Color Newsletter. On the far right hand side toward the bottom of the photo is where the nitty gritty color mixing goes on (pasta machine is just off to the right of the photo).

What’s going on in your studio/work area this week?

in the studio – flowers and pirates

What? Flowers and pirates don’t go together? Maybe not, but that’s what has been happening in the studio. Studio time has been sporadic at best lately. Sometimes life just gets in the way, but I’m trying to get back on track. So, let’s take a look at what has been going on in the studio. If you “like” me on Facebook, you have probably seen some of these. If you haven’t “liked” me on Facebook, what are you waiting for?

Let’s start with the flowers. These are the first polymer clay pendants in my Bloom Where You Are Planted series…Tropical Beauty, American Beauty, Classic Beauty and Subtle Beauty.

I’ve also been playing with metal and fire. This is where I’m at…..

But this is what I’m trying to duplicate color-wise….

On to pirates. I love all the “Pirates of the Caribbean” movies and have had the idea for this bracelet floating around in my head. Then one of my bead/jewelry groups had a sea themed challenge which motivated me to bring the vision to life. Ode to Captain Jack, is a faux leather polymer clay cuff. Don’t you think it would look great on Johnny Depp? A girl can dream….

in the studio – fall colors

The fall/winter 2011 Premo polymer clay recipes ebook is now available in my Etsy shop and ArtFire shop. This year’s color trends include more of what I consider to be traditional fall colors….the muted green, reds, oranges and browns of fall leaves along with some bright pops of color and beautiful metallics in pale gold, copper and champagne beige. I recently added FIMO classic spring/summer 2011 recipes and will get to the fall colors in the next month or so. I will also be adding seasonal recipes for Kato clay soon.

So, what else is going on in the studio? Magazine article deadlines, custom orders, and several other projects that aren’t leaving me much time for playing with clay at the moment. I recently bought several of the new Premo colors. I’m not as crazy about the new copper as I was the old, but I’m completely in love with the new bronze metallic. I hope to get some time to play with the new colors next week and will let you know what I think.