I took part in Carmen's Secret Santa swap again this year and was delighted to receive a package from England. Irene did a wonderful job stalking me. In fact, she was so good at stalking that card she sent benefited breast cancer, a cause very near and dear to me.
I had a beautiful Christmas all around and I hope all of you did too.
Thanks for stopping by!
Sunday, December 30, 2012
Thursday, November 1, 2012
One of my favorite Christmas movies is "A Christmas Story". I watch it at least once every year and it still makes me laugh everytime. (Dont you just love movies that are like that!) I was brainstorming for cute costume ideas and the thought of the lamp crossed my mind. The more I thought about it, the more I figured out how I could construct a costume for the lamp. I almost didn't do this costume because I was short on time. I did a search and there is a commercial Leg Lamp costume available, but I just didn't like the way it looked. I finally decided to give the costume a couple of hours work and see if I could get it done in that time frame.
I started with some cheapo wire hangers. You know the type you get your stuff back from the dry cleaners on. I unwrapped the top section so I had one long wire. I pulled on it some and used some pliers to help me straighten them out (not perfectly straight, but that's ok). I then figured out about how long I wanted the lampshade to be from top to bottom and cut 4 lengths of wire to just a bit longer than that measurement. I used 2 more stretched out hangers (connected them together by simple wire wraps) to form 2 rings. A smaller one for the top part of the shade. I did a rough shape bend on the 4 straight lengths of wire so that the shade would have the proper shape when put together. The next part was the trickiest as I was home alone and only have two hands. A friend willing to do some holding would have made this step much easier! I used some simple wire wraps to attach the 4 straight lengths of wire to the 2 rings. I did these as tight as possible, but the whole frame was very wonky (unstable if you're not familiar with my high tech terms). I then wrapped stained glass foil tape around all the unions of wire and soldered the crap out of them to make a little stronger union. No, you cant solder the hangers themself, but the tape/solder creation I did (which anyone schooled in soldering would cringe at) held it long enough for the next step.
I grabbed a roll of electrical tape and wrapped the crap (another highly technical term) out of the top and bottom rings, and especially all the unions. This made the frame pretty stable and I was happy with it.
After the fabric laid down the way I wanted it to I pulled out the fringe trim I had also purchased at Hobby Lobby. (Again, I had bought 2 yards, and actually had to go back and by 6 more inches to finish this, so if you're going to do this project, start with 2 1/2 yards of each and save some frustrations. I glued the fringe onto the bottom (Larger ring area)
Thanks for stopping by!
Friday, October 19, 2012
"Dont be to scared to check your BOObies"
I finally got to make a few entries for a decorated bra fundraiser to mark breast cancer awareness month. I've been wanting to participate in one of these for years, but the dates and my time available to do one have never meshed. I love that my first entries into something like this are for the fundraiser at my friends Bill and Michelle's Farm Market and Winery. Michelle is a survivor and truly knows how to embrace and celebrate each day. Their business is Maize Valley Farm Market & Winery. Its a friendly place filled with good food and wonderful wine. I've gotten 2 bras done for the event and have mailed them off. I am working on a 3rd, but I'm not sure it will get done in time to ship it off to them.
"Keep your eyes on your breasts. Check 'em monthly!"
8 of 10 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. Because of advances in treatment, and screening technologies, women (and men) who discover their cancer early now have a 99% 5 year survival rate. Please do your monthly screenings and get your mammograms.
Thanks for stopping by
Monday, May 7, 2012
Sunday, April 29, 2012
Hi everyone, I'm happy to announce the launch of my Fine Art website. I hope you'll hop over and investigate. It's still being worked on, but the start is up and I'm excited. I'll continue to blog here in my sporadic manner, but all of my fine art will be on the other site. Hopefully I'll be able to add a blog there too.
Brandy Gerber's Fine Art
Brandy Gerber's Fine Art
Thursday, April 19, 2012
I must admit this one is not my favorite, but its gotten a lot of really nice feedback. This one challenged me quite a bit.
Thanks for stopping by.
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
I love how this turned out and it now hangs over our couch. I think this is my favorite painting I've ever done and love that I get to see it everyday!
Thanks for visiting.
Sunday, April 15, 2012
Thanks for visiting,
Saturday, April 14, 2012
I haven't posted in awhile but that doesn't mean I've been idle. I set a goal for myself this year to get my art into a shop or a gallery. I've been painting a lot trying to get together a nice repertoire to present to places. Today, my work paid off and I am still stunned to say that I will have a month long art show in May of 2013!!!!
It will be held at Pentamere Winery in Tecumseh. It even includes an artist reception! I am very excited and encouraged by this acceptance of my art. I promise I'll update more soon to show the work I've been doing, but just wanted to let any and all of my readers know the good news now!
Thanks for visiting,
Monday, March 12, 2012
I saw these adorable little hats at Claire's and I really liked them. I thought about buying one, but decided I'd try to make my own and then maybe I could continue making them for different seasons and holidays. I started by cutting out 2 circles, one bigger than the other, and a long rectangle. These will form the visible hat.
Taking the long rectangle, I cut the edges and folded them up so I would be able to tape them to the top and bottom circle.
Thanks so much for stopping by. I'll be linking up to some of the parties found in my sidebar and also here:
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
I love being in our backyard when the weather is nice. After being cooped up during the cold, dreary winter months, I try to spend as much time as possible out there. I paint out there, read out there, nap in the hammock out there, and of course play with the pups. We dont have tons of land but we are fortunate enough to have a nice privacy fence to ward off the nosy neighbors-if only there was a way to make it soundproof!-and also let the pups run free in a safe environment. I've been trying to add little touches back there to make the space even more enjoyable. This past summer, I made a mermaid to hang on the back of the garage. She is visible from almost the entire backyard.
I sketched out a basic shape on some fairly thin plywood, and then cut out the shape. Yes, I cut it out by myself, that's why she's got some wonky spaces. I then started painting her. I wasn't exactly sure how I was going to finish her so I painted the fin with scales and just basically thought over different ideas for her.
I started gluing seashells and little glass marbles onto her tail. I used quick-set epoxy to attach them. I gave her fins a more patterned placement of the shells. I also added more glass baubles around her waistline. I like how that looked, so then I had to decide what to do with her body and hair.
I had a terrible time painting her boobs, so I decided she needed a shell bra. I affixed two of the larger, better matched shells on her torso to cover my awful paint job. I then went in search of hair material.
I decided that branches would give her a fun, funky 'do and I began epoxying them in a crazy hairstyle. When everything was attached and dry, She was sealed up since she'd be hanging outside and then, with the hubby's help, we screwed her onto the back of the garage. I love how she turned out. I know have a funky, unexpected surprise to make me smile and enjoy the backyard even more!
Now I just gotta wait for the warm weather to return! Thanks so much for stopping by.
Monday, February 20, 2012
For Christmas this year I decided to make my niece a large, lighted peace sign to hang on her bedroom wall. I saw this idea in a Pottery Barn catalog, but found it to be priced out of range for our gift giving budget. It didn't seem like it would be that hard to create so I ran my idea by my hubby. He agreed to help out so we we went off to the hardware store in search of plywood.
We purchased a thin sheet of plywood (I cant remember exactly, but I think it was only about 1/4" thick). I sketched out a peace sign using rulers-which I usually revolt against using-to make sure everything would be even and look correct. This was the most difficult part of this project. After I did the sketch and thought it looked good, my hubby got to work cutting it out for me. He even sanded it! Then we put on a few coats of white paint. I had thought about making holes all around the sign to stick the lights through, but decided that I liked the idea of them being behind the sign and backlighting it. I spread out a string of white Christmas lights over the back of the sign and started to tape them down. Problem was, the tape wasn't staying down. I thought maybe we could use a staple gun and staple the wires on, but the staples were to deep, or the wood was to thin. Either way, the result was an oops of going all the way through the sign, and then it was necessary to patch up the holes and paint job. After the fix was complete, we decided that push pins would work to hold the tape down and the wires were quickly held in place and the sign was completed.
Here it is (sorry for my hub's hands-the sign requires 2 nails to hang and we dont have any in our house to demo it from) unlit.
And here it is with the lights lit up.
I love how this turned out. My niece loves it. It was fairly easy to make and very inexpensive in comparison to buying from the store. Hope that maybe you've been inspired to look through a catalog with a new eye.
Thanks for stopping by.
I'm linking this project here:
Monday, February 13, 2012
This painting was actually done last spring. I was looking for new ways to help fundraise for my Breast Cancer 3-Day walk and I decided to try to do art and craft commissions in return for donations. This worked really well for me and helped me bring in quite a bit of money to help in the fight for breast cancer. This painting was done for my friend and walking buddy Dan. We walked together in San Diego in Nov. 2010, and again in Boston during July 2011. We're signed up to walk again in San Francisco in Sept. of this year. He is a wonderful friend and I enjoy all the time we are able to spend together.
I found it funny that I was super worried about painting the tiger striped gray cat. That one went well and just fell into place without much of a struggle. On the other hand, the black and white one was very hard for me. I had to redo that one a few times to get it right. This is an acrylic painting on a 9x12 canvas. It was a fun project to work on and I learned quite a few things while I was working on this painting. Here's one of the photos' I was sent to base my painting from:
I'm still open to doing commission work both for donations, and for profit depending on the situation. I've got a few things in the works and I can't wait to get started on them.
Thanks for stopping by
Wednesday, February 8, 2012
Tuesday, February 7, 2012
I have a great friend who runs a haunted house and a corn maze each fall. I volunteered to help paint some things for her. I was excited to do this for a few reasons.
1. Its always a great experience to help someone.
2. It would allow me to paint something I've never done before.
3. It would allow me to paint on a scale I've never done before.
4. It would allow me to work with someone to decide on a concept together and then help make our joint vision become reality. (As opposed to me painting my usual subjects.)
We decided it would be fun to have one of those photo-stand in's for visitors to take pictures with. I brainstormed a few ideas and did some rough sketching. After some consultation, we decided to do a farmer and his horse peeking out from a barn door. She bought me a huge sheet of plywood, tons of paint and left me to it. I sketched in the design and then left the cutting out to the "head holes" to someone else. I can't be trusted with power tools! In the picture below, the area above the roof still needs to be cut off, but the rest is the final project. This was really fun and challenging for me and I'm pretty happy with the results.
Saturday, February 4, 2012
Our local Volunteer Fire Department has been incredibly supportive of me and my constant fundraising to fight breast cancer. They allowed me to set up a booth selling tshirts and other breast cancer awareness items during their annual fall festival fundraiser. They did this not expecting anything back, they were simply helping a neighbor. Not only did they let me sell, they all bought from me and on the last night of the festival they all wore my shirts around showing incredible support in the fight against breast cancer. It was a wonderful experience and I am very grateful to have such fun, compassionate, caring people serving our community.
Thanks for stopping by.
Thursday, February 2, 2012
I have a tradition of making ornaments for all of my piano students each year. This year I came up with these personalized music note ornaments. I used the same concept as gifts for my church choir but substituted a picture of the painting I had made of the church inside the note head. These were fairly easy to make once I got the hang of it.
I had some tubing in my stash that I had picked up on clearance a long time ago. I simply cut them down to a reasonable length.
Added some copper foil so I could solder them
Soldered the whole thing together
Added the picture or the name, layered on some Glossy Accents, and then threw a glass pebble over the top to give it dimension.
I think they turned out cute and everyone seemed to like them.Thanks for stopping by.