December 17, 2010


So, as I was taking photos of my decor, I became sidetracked by an old friend...

I was using her as part of my Christmas decor.  When I got to the shelf she was on, something just clicked and she (and her littler friends) got an impromptu photo shoot.

Family portrait

I was inspired early this morning once again by the doll's cuteness and edited these guys in the wee hours of the AM.  Inspiration doesn't wait.  If I had just tried to go to sleep I would have ended up frustrating myself.  I would have kept myself awake wanting to work on these.  I'm weird.  It's not like the photos were going anywhere... 

Alright.  That's all from me!  Aren't you impressed with the volume of posts?  Two in a day!  Wow!  I may actually become a more conscientious blogger.

I Keep My Promises...

As promised, here is a photo of my whole tree, from top to bottom.  It finally got the photo shoot that it deserves.

I added some more glittered glass ornaments and two more chipboard glitter banners.

I took quite a few photos today, so hopefully I'll have the time to post them this weekend.  In the meanwhile, enjoy this sneak peak...

December 10, 2010

O Christmas Tree...

OK, this will be my first decor post on this blog.  I haven't done any photography lately since all my time has been eaten up by decorating for Christmas.  As soon as that's done I'll have to start working on gifts.  I'm a little behind, but it'll work out.  It always does.

This is my first fancy tree.  I've always wanted to have a themed tree, but then Christmas would come and I'd just decide to put up what I had.  I feel a little bit bad about not using all my sentimental ornaments, but only a little.  I'm happy with my tree.  And it's a new fake tree that I got at the end of Christmas last year for $20!  Hooray for clearance!!  Oh, and it was pre-lit.  Awesomeness!  So now I have two trees (the other one was my parent's old one and is kind of falling apart...)

So, on to my tree.  I decided to go for a shabby-chic look with glitter.  I'm quite pleased with how it turned out, all in all.  (I didn't get a photo of the full tree...I didn't feel like dragging out my tri-pod tonight.  I will post another shot later of the whole thing).

I made a lot of the ornaments on tree, including the topper.
It's just a styrofoam star that I found at Hobby Lobby.  I beveled the edges, which turned out to be quite messy and hard to clean up (stupid static electricity).  I then just covered it in pages from an old dictionary and good ol' Modge Podge.  I tried for the top pieces of paper to choose relevant words.  I then just tied it to the tree with twine.  I really love the way it looks.

I also made ornaments out of sheet music.  I just bought a package of ornaments from Wal-Mart (for $ not too bad) and covered them with photo copies of sheet music I used back in high school (I played the oboe).  I covered the hangers with twine using a hot glue gun.

I also covered some ornaments with Martha Stewart's glitter.  I wanted to add some color to the tree (it was looking a bit white) and a little bit of glitz.  Again, hot glue and twine adorn the top of the bulbs.

I also made some fabric rosettes from some old linen someone gave me.  I glued them to clothespins I aged with Tim Holtz's distressing ink (I love that stuff).

I also aged some silver ornaments.  I covered them in metallic paint to dull the shine a bit.  I let it dry just a smidgen and wiped it down.  I then used that wonderful distressing ink again to give it a bit more age and I was done.  It's an easy craft and quite effective.

Well that's my tree in a nutshell.  I post a full tree image later.  I'm still making some glittered chipboard letter banners for it and I may do a couple of more glittered ornaments, too.  Oh, my garland for the tree is just some lace I picked up from Jeffrey Allens.  I love how it looks on the tree.

OK, I'm also linking to my first ever linky party!!  Woohoo!  I at least got on board for the final link party of the Holiday Home series.  Visit Thrifty Decor Chick to see other Christmas trees on the blogosphere!

November 9, 2010

a midwest fairy tale

fairy tale

I took this photo near Funks Grove on a recent photo trip with my Dad. We saw a train bridge nearby and decided to go exploring.  We found this old silo hidden along the tracks and it immediately captured my imagination.  It almost seemed like a fairy tale Rapunzel had once escaped from its heights. It was a fantastic find.

I edited the picture almost right away when I got back. I really went to town on it to give it the feel I wanted. The leaves in the foreground were all green.  I wanted it to feel more like fall, so I changed them to shades of red and orange.   I added my textures, as usual, and it took a lot of playing to make it look a bit faded.  Sometimes I have a hard time finding the balance between texture and photo.  I don't want the details in the photo to be completely washed out, but at the same time I want to give it a painterly quality.  So it really ends up coming down to trial and error with these...just playing around until something works for me.

In other news, I will actually post some photos of my fall decor in the near-ish future for the my imaginary followers to admire.  I am excited to find 5 actual, factual followers now...and four of them aren't my Mom!

October 30, 2010


A new photo for you!  A fall photo trip took my Dad and I back to Funks Grove (the go-to place for photos) and we got close to a little vineyard there.  The lighting was amazing and I was thrilled to get some sun glare in the shot.  There will be a few glared photos coming up.

For the Grapes' Sake
I will have some more photos soon.  I am thinking about adding some of my other artistic endeavors to this blog.  I enjoy crafting and decorating as well, so maybe I will start blogging about that as well.  Maybe it will get me to post more often.

September 7, 2010

funks grove barn

funks grove barn
Originally uploaded by K2D2vaca

This barn is found just outside Funks Grove (along Route 66 in central Illinois). The texture is a mix of photos I took of old papers, rust, paint, etc. I love blending different things together to get a look. The red in the rust really pops with the paint color of the barn. I will probably make this photo available on my ImageKind page, FYI.

I have more photos to post, I just haven't gotten around to it yet. Soon!!

August 30, 2010

Mr. Andrew F. Nirk

31 Ys., 3 Ms. & 15 Ds.
Originally uploaded by K2D2vaca

Looking through my stash of photos, I stumbled across this shot of a bird on top of a lovely old headstone at Funk's Grove cemetery. As I was editing it, I started wondering about Mr. Andrew F. Nirk. Why did he die at the age of 31? What's his story?

So, on a whim, I decided to Google him. I didn't think my chances were too great at finding anything, after all he died in 1861. Amazingly enough, the first link that comes up not only has his name, but also a short page on his life. How's that for cool?

August 29, 2010

OK, this time I'm back for real!

I say that, but what if I'm wrong?  I now have a new computer and more free time than I know how to use, so I really am going to try to keep posting. We shall see...

So, with the new computer comes...PHOTOS!  Yes, I am editing again, and it's wonderful.  I love manipulating my photos to make them convey what I feel about the subject.  It's cathartic.

So, without further ado, my first two new photos to share:

small town

This was taken in the town of North Bend, Nebraska.  It would fit in with several small central Illinois towns I can think of.

This was also taken in Nebraska and I'm not exactly sure where.  We passed quite a few windmills that day.

Well, that's all for now, but I'll be posting some more soon!  Later!