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Saturday, October 16, 2010

Funky Furniture

Little Black Dresser
14”W x 46”H x10” D
MDF, Maple Veneer, Aluminum
Judson Beaumont
Straight Line Designs Inc

          Like me, you've probably looked at a plate of food or two and thought to yourself, "This is almost too pretty to eat." Ever seen a piece of furniture so elegant, you'd be hesitant to use it? Check out the Little Black Dresser (right) by Judson Beaumont of Straight Line Designs. It rocks my world with its sexy silhouette and asymmetrical "hemline". The hanger is a fabulous touch, and you already know how much I love wordplay. 
Bad Table
40” W x 18”H x 20” D
Western Maple, Maple Veneer, Aluminium
Judson Beaumont
Straight Line Designs Inc
         On the left is the first and only piece of furniture that has made me laugh. It's not exactly what many people would call "tasteful," but I think it's just great, definitely a conversation piece!

Together We Can
No.: DF1120
24''w x 84''h x 15''d
Vincent Leman
 All of these pieces have one awesome thing in common: personality! Kudos to anyone who can infuse such character into inanimate objects that we ordinarily take for granted. I don't know about you, but I'm inspired. That's one of the reasons I'm super excited to be participating in Mobile's first Funky Furniture Auction to benefit the Mobile Arts Council and the American Advertising Federation - Mobile Bay. I'll be funkifying a donated bookshelf  (left) to be auctioned off at the December Artwalk. Pick your own piece to funkify here

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Fresh Furnishings

Treasury is Etsy's ever-changing, member-curated shopping gallery. I've put together my own Treasury, full of fresh furniture and home decor. Click the image to view the actual Treasury on Etsy. 

Sunday, October 10, 2010

I ♥ Beer

Just a few years ago, my experiences with beer were limited to Coors Light, Corona, and the like. I was not impressed. On May 22 of 2009, The Gourmet Beer Bill was passed in Alabama, raising the allowable alcohol by volume (ABV) from 6% to 13.9%. It was then that my eyes were opened to the glorious wonders of beer! These are some of my favorites (not all because I'm sure I left a few out).     

1. Abita Strawberry Harvest.  Abita Brewing Co., Louisiana.  4.2%ABV
2. Bison Organic Chocolate Stout.  Bison Brewing Co., California.  6.1%ABV
3. Guinness Extra Stout.  Guinness Ltd., Ireland.  6%ABV
4. Holy Mackerel Mack in Black.  Gordash Brewing Co., Florida.  8%ABV
5. Left Hand Good Juju.  Left Hand Brewing Co., Colorado.  4%ABV
6. Lindemans Framboise.  Brouwerij Lindemans, Belgium.  4%ABV
7. Negra Modelo.  Grupo Modelo S.A. de C.V., Mexico.  5.4%ABV
8. Newcastle Brown Ale.  Scottish & Newcastle UK Ltd., Scotland.  4.7%ABV
9. O'Fallon Wheach.  O'Fallon Brewery, Missouri.  5.1%ABV
10. Sierra Nevada Kellerweis Hefeweizen.  Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., California. 4.8%ABV
11. Sweaty Betty Blonde.  Boulder Beer/Wilderness Pub, Colorado.  5.9%ABV
12. Sweetwater Blue.  Sweetwater Brewing Co., Georgia.  4.9%ABV
13. Terrapin Midnight Project Depth Charge.  Terrapin Beer Co., Georgia.  7%ABV
14. Terrapin Side Project Pumpkinfest.  Terrapin Beer Co., Georgia.  6.1%ABV
15. Thomas Creek Orange Blossom Pilsner Squared. Thomas Creek Brewery, SC. 11%ABV
16. Wells Banana Bread Beer.  Wells & Young's Ltd., England.  5.2%ABV 

I encourage all of you to leave a comment regarding your favorite beer(s). I'm always interested in trying new brews. Thanks!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Web Tool Faves

CraftCult tracks your item views, item hearts, shop hearts and even determines if you've been featured on the Etsy or Storque main page. I particularly like the "Reset Views" feature, which stores the current view count for your items so that when you reload the page, the differences appear in the "New Views" section. 

The "Heart Chart" tab calculates your total shop hearts per month over a specified period of time and shows them to you in the form of a line chart.

Craftopolis is another useful statistics tool. On the left, it displays the current month's calendar. The purple silhouettes represent unique visitors, the white pages represent the total shop visits, and the hearts represent individual favorites. On the right is a more detailed report of the current calendar day.

Click on the "Tag Report" tab to see how effective your tags are and on what page your item is found in a search for specific tags. The "Treasure Tracks" tab shows you all of the treasuries in which your items have been included and how many times they've been viewed in each respective treasury. 

At a glance, Yaami's Where's the Luv? shows you who has added your shop as a favorite, where they are from, whether or not they have a shop of their own, and their feedback rating.

These next four tools aren't just for Etsy sellers. If you tweet, participate in online forums, have a blog, or run a business: listen up!

Want to know who has been talking about you or your product(s)? Type your name, Etsy username or the name of your business into Social Mention to see where you have been mentioned in blogs, social networks etc. I definitely recommend signing up for their daily email alerts.

Do you have trouble coming up with appropriate tags for your products and posts? With Tagtastic's Tag Finder, you simply enter a tag and receive a list of related tags, along with their average daily clicks, average price, and number of items posted with those tags. Better still is the Shop Stats feature. Enter your shop name and your tags will be analyzed, helping you determine which of your current tags are most effective. Like Google Trends, but better, these two tools will help you determine the relevance of your products in today's market.

If you use Twitter for personal or business reasons, you will love TinyURL! Enter a web address of any length, and receive a significantly shorter link that never expires. 
For example,
The link was transformed from 74 to 26 characters, which is clearly more convenient when limited to 140 characters.  

Let's say you want to include the entire image of a website on your blog or want to share the full image of an Etsy treasury. Thumbalizr is your answer. You choose the quality and size of the file in either .jpg or .png format.  

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Thought Process: Photoshoots

Model: Chasity Gray
© Sharon Whelton
          Build the photo shoot around a muse or find a model to express an idea? In the case of the series of lovely ladies with lollipops, as mentioned in my last post, I will be hunting models to accommodate my artistic vision. Sometimes, a location or person becomes my muse.
          About this time last year, I found myself inspired by space 301, a local gallery where I enjoy volunteering my time. The building was converted from the Mobile Press Register and offers a nice variety of settings, from the library to the tile room, a grungy warehouse where the local newspaper was printed. The tile room, in particular, called my name. I wanted to contrast its dirtiness with sex appeal.
           On Tuesday, I'll begin shooting a series in which the inspiration is drawn from a human muse. Jean's art, style and personality are all her own. For me, she embodies the clichè "out of the box." The series will be entitled just that, "Out of the Box." I plan to photograph Jean trapped inside a box, dressed in boring, ordinary clothing and then again outside of the box in her usual eccentric fashion. I want two Jeans to every photograph; so, some major Photoshop work will be in order. And, of course, I'll be sharing the results with you.