Friday, October 29, 2010


So I had this box show up at our door last Saturday, and an hour later, I'd turned its contents into a TLR camera.
 This is what it looked like once I took it out of its mailer.

 Here it all is just out of the box.

 Organization is key. It keeps you from losing the tiny, tiny screws that hold this camera together.

Ta-da! Camera complete. It took just about an hour (that's not counting the 20 min lunch break I took) to put this toy together. Considering that the instructions are all in Japanese, I'm quite happy with myself.

The Recesky is a do-it-yourself TLR camera. It is basically a clone of the Gakkenflex. It has two plastic lenses, and I think its a rather lovely contraption. Jon was impressed with just how well thought-out it was, and he had a fun time checking in on my progress.

So, just as soon as it was all put together and loaded with film, I had to take it out for a spin.  We went back to the Babylon area near Leeds, UT. I have more plans for this area. There are more trails to hike and scenes to take in, and many more photos to take. The day was absolutely lovely-- all stormy and windy. And it was humid! It felt like we'd been transported somewhere far from the desert. It was a fun deviation from the norm.


You can see the rest of the set HERE

Sunday, October 17, 2010


granat, originally uploaded by Janelka.

Polish for pomegranate. I love this fruit, and I LOVE that it grows in my backyard. It grows just outside of our bedroom, actually. And occasionally, in night-time wind storms, the branches scrape against our sliding glass door and wake me from my slumber. But I don't hold a grudge. It'll do what it'll do.
It is very nearly time to harvest out bountiful crop this year and I can hardly wait!

This photo was taken on my SX 70 camera, using The Impossible Project's PX 70 color shade film. (I love this film more and more.)

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Pens and Journaling, a History . . . and slight obsession

After getting most of my art supplies organized and finding all of my pens, I have separated them out, donating most of my everyday workhorse pens to the general pile in the office desk. Then I organized my art pens and realized just how short I am on my brown ink pens.

I started writing in a journal when I was thirteen. A good age to start, right? I think I just began writing on a whim, when I happened upon a journal somewheres. I thought it was a good idea, so I stuck with it. 

In the early days I used a lot of different ink colors, mostly ballpoint. My thinking was that if I switched my ink color for each entry, it would be that much easier to flip through it later in life. Also, it made keeping up a journal so much more fun that way. I also added sketches and doodles and in a few journals I wrote out the page numbers ornately. (Did I really have that much time on my hands back then?) 

My preferences in ink color back in the early days were purple, sky blue, and the regular office variety blue and black. Pink made it into the mix from time to time, because as I remember, it came with the sky blue and purple in a three-pack. 

As I got older and got my hands on more inks, I added orange into the mix. By the time I was in college, I'd entirely dropped the purple/lilac and baby blue inks from the mix and took to only writing in fine point. I added in grass green and had by that point almost entirely switched over to ink and gel pens. I kept a few ballpoints around for class notes, and that was it. Enough years had rolled by to convince me of the importance of archival pens, so ballpoints were pretty much out for me. I switched to writing in mostly darker inks and brown quickly became my favorite. I have one small journal that was 95% filled with brown ink. Then, my last year in college I took a figure-drawing course taught by a illustrator. He enabled my pen addiction and even encouraged it. So off I went to buy a greater variety of pens-- I finally branched out of fine and extra fine points while sketching and drawing for class. And I bought a greater variety of ink and pigment pens. I had so many pens to choose from, and all at my university's bookstore. Graduating didn't keep me away. Nope, it was when I moved to Lehi that I stopped my regular trips to the bookstore to get my pen fix. By then I'd built up quite a stash, so it wasn't much of an issue.

But here we are, years later, and I'm running low. And I've moved about four hours away from my beloved bookstore. And in my lovely little town, I can' seem to find really good pens to save my life. They have a limited selection at the Michael's-- mostly scrap-booking pens that are too thick or they are puffy. Not what I look for in journaling and sketching. There are a few inky pens, but most of them don't hold up for any length of time. 

So I decided to do what any sane person would do, I decided to research good pens to buy and then bought some online. I mean, if a brown gel ink pen is going to get me to journal more regularly, its worth it, right?

Thank you The Pen Addict, for making me realize that I'm not the only pen-obsessed person out there. I feel like I can trust you and your reviews. (Your site's minimalistic style and your handwriting were an added bonus.)You led me to Jet Pens, which led me to my purchase today. (Their prices are quite reasonable for what I needed.) So I have a few pens that should be showing up in the next week. 

This will probably bore most people to tears, so I won't go into particulars right now, but suffice it to say that I have two blue black pens, a couple of black pens, a couple of brown pens (One is called tea brown, I can hardly wait!), and a green black one as well. The mix is almost entirely gel ink, but there is one fountain pen as well as one Pilot Envelope Address Writing Gel Ink Pen. I stumbled upon that one through the Pen Addict when I was getting all geared up for writing out my wedding announcement addresses. It didn't work out then as they were sold out, but I'll be getting one now! I'm not sure how many more envelopes I'll be hand-addressing any time soon, but that's beside the point. 

Oh, and I'm getting a new travel sketchbook, too. Reason to sketch more? I think so. 

Sunday, October 10, 2010


cedar city

Cedar City

The above photograph was taken on my trusty Berkey Keystone Everflash camera. Man I love that thing. I have had some shutter issues with some of my Polaroid cameras, especially when shooting on really bright days, but my Keystone has yet to fail me. I always get some kind of image. Sure, this one is a little over exposed, but that's my doing. 

I may have picked up yet another Polaroid camera at a thrift store. I had the intention of finding and bringing home shelves to better organize my art space, but there weren't any to be found. Well, I didn't count rickety plastic ones as an option. But as I was passing by the small "Collectibles" area, I couldn't help but spy a small group of lonely cameras. After looking at them all, I decided to take the Polaroid Big Swinger 3000 home with me. You can check out a commercial for it HERE. They're funny plastic beasties, and this particular model can only take ISO 3000 film. So, it isn't all that versatile, but you can still get film for it easily, and that's what matters, right? Also, this guy used spreader bars rather than rollers to push the goop that develops the photos. So far all my other Polaroids have rollers. There is probably a reason for this-- the rollers probably work better, but well, I couldn't help myself. I just had to try it out. So, I'm sure there will be photos with that little guy that'll show up here soon.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Ribbons and Bottles

ribbons and glass

Little painting, inspired by the scene in my last post. A couple of weeks ago, I sat down and started sketching and painting in earnest since moving down to St. George, and this was one of my practice pieces.
I'm also working on another series, we'll see how long it takes for me to share it with the world.