Monday, April 15, 2013

Journey of 1,000 Cranes (part three)

Things are still moving with the project. In my previous crane post, I had mentioned that I was 9 away. I am still 9 away, because I wanted to start stringing it up. Then once it's almost ready, I will celebrate the last one with my friends and family. :)

It's been interesting deciding how I wanted to string things up. I went to Home Depot because at first I thought I wanted tubing to shape and suspend wherever. I thought it'd be fun to string glow bracelets or lights through it, but I reconsidered as it really wasn't quite as aesthetically pleasing as I would like. I opted instead for wires and hooks.

I bought glow in the dark string and some amethyst beads to weigh it down at the bottom. Purple is my absolute favorite color! In the ancient world, purple has been commonly associated with royalty and piety. Also, amethyst has always been linked to the thinking process, ensuring clarity of vision -- inspiring creativity, courage and valor. And in other folklore, it was typically worn to make the wearer gentle and amiable. Amethyst powers include: dreams, healing, peace, love, spiritual upliftment, courage,  psychism, protection against thieves, and happiness.

My big adventure though was trying to buy clear plastic straws. I could not find any to buy easily. I went to HEB, Randalls, Party Pig, Walmart, Target and Garden Ridge. So at that point I considered going to a restaurant supply store, but then I got to thinking... well let's see if someone would be willing to just give me some. So I called Amy's Ice Cream near my house, and the girl was very willing to help when I told her of my dilemma. Unfortunately they weren't the right kind of straws, but I was still very appreciative. Then I tried Chipotle near my house, and I was very happy they could help me. The person on the phone was so helpful, even asking if I would mind being put on hold so he could open the straw wrapper and make sure it was right and that he had enough. Now I have straws for spacers. 

I strung up my first strand, and here it is: 

First strand (25 cranes) -- there will be 40 strands total.
I am SO looking forward to seeing all of them together!

Here's 100 (4 strands of 25)
I find it really interesting how sometimes when you're doing something you're passionate about, suddenly lots of things show up in your life with much greater relevancy. I remember when I first started my crane project more than a year and a half ago, I went to a Renegade Craft Fair, just to kind of be inspired and see all what was there. I came across a vendor who made origami crane jewelry, which I adored. I bought a really beautiful pair of earrings in an electric blue color. Then there was a booth from the Houston Contemporary Art Museum that was drumming up interest for their latest exhibition, works from an origami artist. The table was covered with all sorts of origami paper and I made a crane right then and there. I thought it was really special that I found these things at the time I did. It definitely gave me a feeling of connectivity.

I ended up going to that exhibit and just felt very inspired. The artist had so many neat ideas. Maybe for my next project I might make some origami butterflies. We'll see, one thing at a time, I suppose.

I had a professor in college who explained this phenomenon, which she called a "Windshield Moment"... basically she had gotten a new car and was cruising down the highway when some truck was changing lanes and sent a rock from the road flying into her windshield. A brand spanking new car that now had an obnoxious chip in it. She was so disappointed and just was left with a "Now what?" feeling. Well, as she sat in traffic, she looked out the window at a billboard that was for windshield repairs. How many times had she passed by that billboard not knowing what it even said? What else is right under our very noses that we miss constantly? Relevancy sure is something.

It also reminds me of this fantastic article I found on MSN about making your own luck.

Want to improve your luck? It could be as easy as adjusting your attitude. Studies show that people who consider themselves lucky actually tend to be -- it's a self-fulfilling prophecy. That's because positive thinkers are always keeping their eyes peeled for fortuitous situations, and they're more likely to pounce on them when they arise.

In a study conducted by [Richard Wiseman, Ph.D., a psychologist from the University of Hertfordshire and author of The Luck Factor, who has done a decade of research on the topic], researchers placed some money on the sidewalk in the paths of different people -- some who claimed to be lucky, and others who considered themselves unlucky. The "lucky" people noticed the money and picked it up; the "unlucky" people walked past the cash.

I thought that was a really neat story. I have always felt like I've had lots of luck, so it was fun to hear that sometimes we make our own  luck by having our eyes and minds open. And to geek out for a little bit, I always make sure in RPGs to add to the luck attribute. You're more likely to land critical hits, dodge attacks and sometimes find special items. Ok, nerd mode over.

I would never just rely solely on luck getting you places. Being at the right place at the right time or who you know may get you somewhere, but what you know will keep you there. Good luck out there everyone!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Journey of 1,000 Cranes (part two)

This is what 991 cranes looks like :)
If you aren't sure about what all this is about, you can read the first part here.

That's right, I'm 9 away from reaching my goal of 1,000!


I'm not gonna finish it yet! What I'd like to do is assemble my art piece with what I've got so far and then throw a big party with my family and friends so I can fold the last one with them there and attach it. It'll mean so much having the people I care about, and that care about me, there with me.

This project has been wonderful. It's been met with lots of encouragement and positivity, and I'm so happy.

It's funny, though, because I find myself noticing more the little things people say to sabotage themselves. The biggest thing I've heard this project is "I don't think I'd have the patience." You'd be surprised what you're capable of. And really the whole point of patience in this matter is that you keep working towards it, and don't get hung up with the fact that you're not done yet. I've worked on this for more than a year and a half. And now here I am sharing my progress.

I think patience also requires a great deal of faith. And I don't mean that strictly in a religious sense, but an all around collective sense of faith -- it could be faith in God that He has a plan for you, or even just faith in yourself that you can do it, or faith in the universe that things will be alright. This project has grown with me and evolved into something much more than it started out.

Hope is wishing for an outcome.
Faith is believing in an outcome.

Things are doable. You are capable of so much.

So that's the message people, don't sabotage yourselves. Don't victimize yourself. Don't let yourself be a product of your environment, especially if you have a really shitty environment. Don't be a trash receptacle for someone else's baggage and insecurities -- in all areas of life from your friends, family members, lovers, classmates, co-workers... Yes we're humans and we're gonna have bad days sometimes, but don't let it escalate to a bad life. We have the power to make decisions in our lives, so let's make them good ones.

Alright alright, I'll get off my soap box now.

At any rate, I'll keep updating with the project and the eventual party! :)

So, in the legend says my wish will be granted when I fold the last crane. I have an idea of what I want to wish for, but it has been fun hearing other people's suggestions, anything from riches, to Kim Jong Un not bombing Austin, a Nintendo 3DS (it's on my list of things to get, though I won't waste my wish on it). I wonder if this is like Genie rules where you can't wish for more wishes. Or if it's like in Bedazzled where the things you wish for will be granted but in the worst way possible. Whether it would really happen or not, who knows, but it's fun to think about. All I know is, that in the rule of wishes, you're not supposed to tell what you wished for. So if you see me with male harem consisting of Ewan McGregor, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jonathan Rhys-Meyers, Jim Sturgess and Ryan Gosling flying all over the world to eat sushi, steaks, candy and ice cream all the time, well... you know.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

StampingChallenges -- SC14

Here is my latest sketch challenge for Stamping Challenges  (SC14 -- April 5, 2013).  

Each week create a sketch for you to try, and the challenge is for you to interpret it the way you see those elements used -- make substitutions with your creativity!

It's open to everyone, so start stamping with us today.

Here was the sketch to work from:

Here's what I did:

Want to get the materials to make a card like this? Visit my store:

For this card I used

Crumb Cake (base)
Whisper White

Real Red
Chocolate Chip
Ginger Blossoms (DSP; Retired)


Wonderful Mother
Fast and Fabulous (Retired)