Sunday, January 31, 2010

Camera Fail

So I finally got around to getting the camera out, to take some nicer pictures of my newest pieces of jewelry, and didn't have much luck. My cell phone does have a camera feature, but it's not quite as nice as an actual camera.

But this is what I got instead. Even in this small thumbnail version the washed out colors are obvious. On the regular sized (click said thumbnail) pixels around the edges can be seen. I did have problems with the pixels the last time I used the camera, but the colors weren't nearly this bad.

I didn't adjust the image at all, this is directly from the camera and uploaded.

This is what it did to the great outdoors. We do have snow, so the ground is white, but the rest of the image shouldn't be those colors. I did take that image through the glass, which I've done before without this issue.

This (DeviantArt link) is how the camera normally takes pictures, I took this picture back in May. Again, there is no adjusting on the computer.

I tried various flash settings, with letting the camera decide to use it, to forcing the flash, and I got the same results.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Have Pin Vise...

I've been using the pin vise I bought back in December from Rings and Things, and it's quite the handy tool. I'm working on a few things at once with it.

This is one of the projects I'm working on, a purple and copper necklace. I used 22 gauge copper wire for the pendant and rings, all cut from the same length of twisted wires. I used two lengths of the purple wire and one of the copper color. For the twisting I had my nylon jaw pliers on one end, and the pin vise on the other. Once the wire was twisted I used my round nose pliers to shape the little rings and the pendant.

The next work in progress is inspired by one of the stories from Catherynne Valente's Omikuji Project, The Apple Tree at the End of the World.

I also used 22 gauge copper wire for this, twisting three strands together with the pin vise for the smaller branches. Where the smaller branches form the limb, I hand twisted them together. I twisted the smaller branches together first, then added the apples and the leaves. One apple is 8mm while the other is 6, I figured that would help give the finished tree some perspective.

I still have yet to make more branches, and once I have the tree all assembled I'll work on shaping the branches and limbs more.

The third pin vise project has no pictures. Tonight and last night I've been doing some work with 20 gauge copper wire for earrings. Using two strands (one gold color, one copper) twisted together I've made some loops, which I'll hang some beads in the center of. It was a little tricky to get the 20g wire into the vise, but still possible.

For the twisting, I found that the nylon jaw pliers work well with the pin vise. I first secured the ends into the vise. Then I slid the pliers down the wires to make sure they were even against each other. The next step was to clamp down on the ends in the jaws of the pliers. I also found that it helps to bend the wires over the far side of the pliers jaws, in a nice right angle. When I first was twisting wires together, they slid around in the pliers. Bending them helped keep them in place.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Chainmaille Set

Well, long time no post. Now that the holidays are over and I'm getting back into my usual routine here is something I've recently made. I started working on this set back in December, between Christmas gifts for friends and family. The choker is 14 inches long, with a bit of an extender chain built in, and the earrings are about an inch or so long.

The weave on these is European 4 in 1, which is a standard maille weave. The double colored diamond pattern I found in a beading magazine I picked up two summers ago. I'm not sure of the ring sizes they had recommended, I ended up picking out sizes and colors at my local bead store that I figured would work well. I've done this pattern before with these size rings, and I've had good luck. These rings work especially well with the earrings. When making a bracelet with larger rings, a single diamond unit felt a bit to heavy to be an earring, but these ones are light weight enough.

Here are the earrings, the same rings as I used with the choker. The earring findings I've had awhile now, and they happened to go well with the rings.

For the rings, I used D20 EC. The AR is 4, D is 1/8 of an inch, and they are made out of 20 gauge wire. They aren't labeled as to what metal they are made out of, but they look like aluminum (I cut one in half, it's not copper, and to soft to be steel).

As I unpack from moving and find the magazine I'll post the details for that issue so others can find the pattern. (Not that it's that complicated). The trick to the diamonds is to have the last row of rings facing the same way as the first row in the next diamond. That way they are less likely to twist around. I'm not counting the single connector ring as a row here.