the art & adventures of tracy durnell


October 19, 2009


Etsy shop launch!

Today's the day - I launched my Etsy shop! Check it out!

I've been having fun modeling stuff for the shop:

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October 18, 2009


Kaeldra Jewelry Logo Design

I've never done any logo design, but in preparation for the launch of my etsy shop, I needed a logo / identity!

The jewelry I make ranges from fun and modern to old-fashioned Victorian & Steampunk, but I feel it's all quite original, so I wanted something that would reflect that range.

My favorite color combination is hot pink and yellow, so I thought that would pull in the fun feeling of my jewelry. I tried to imply 'classic' in a couple different ways - creating an old style initial 'stamp' with cursive K, using a beautiful serif and traditional quatrefoil shape. (The first option below didn't quite get there, although of the three I feel it's the strongest mark.)

The first option was vetoed because hearts aren't really my thing and the 'k' didn't fit. The third option was vetoed because (as Robin rightly pointed out) it evokes quilting. The second option, though flawed, had the feel I wanted.

For revisions, I needed to revise the design to work at small sizes as well as the current large size. I liked the text from the first option above best, so I pulled that in. Moving the text off the quatrefoil made it feel like it was missing something. I came up with this:

Although this would reproduce well at small sizes, it feels too chunky to me, and most of the things I make are more feminine. I also thought that for printing purposes I should make something flat / cut the gradient. I started playing around and came up with something completely different:

I played around some more and came up with a wide version that I think I prefer:

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October 16, 2009


Goal Check-In

At the start of summer, I set goals for the next six months. Since it's ~4 months later, it seems high time to check up on these goals and reanalyze whether or not they're still doable / what I want.
Good progress!

* Graphic Design:
GOAL: take another couple classes (logo design, color theory);
PROGRESS: took "Graphic Design for the Web";
REMAINING: planning to take a packaging class this fall

GOAL: redo my website and make business cards for myself;
PROGRESS: designed graphics and started coding, developed Tracy Durnell 'seal', created initial designs;
REMAINING: spice up design, finalize business card designs

GOAL: get some more experience (through volunteering);
PROGRESS: no time/energy right now! I'm going to push this goal back to spring, I think.

* Jewelry:
GOAL:start selling on Etsy;
PROGRESS: launch date is MONDAY!!!!

* Life:
GOAL: get better at maintaining myself / my stuff;
PROGRESS: have done all sorts of fun body & car & bike maintenance;
REMAINING: maintain myself by getting more exercise: signed up for another round of cardio kickboxing in fall/winter, and am trying to become a runner again - went for my first run last week! Rain is hindering the 2nd run ;D

GOAL: be more social;
PROGRESS: still a homebody :(

Moderate Progress

* Reading / Writing:
GOAL: finish/make significant progress on my book!;
PROGRESS: I spent many lunch hours editing, and am about 30 pages in. I realized as I was editing how much more I have to write, and have lost momentum, switching my lunch hour back to reading.
ASSESSMENT: Start editing during lunch again once I finish current book and next book. Assess how much writing needs to happen and if I still want to do it.

GOAL: increase pace of graphic novel reviews to one per month;
PROGRESS: Wrote 2 reviews; Have notes prepared for 3 more reviews, but haven't written them.
ASSESSMENT: Get my butt in gear and write those reviews!

Haven't done anything!

* Drawing: finish drawings I started in spring; draw for different seasons/solstices
Guess drawing's not on the top of my list any more. I have all sorts of ideas about things I'd like to design and draw, but time and energy is lacking. Should bump this goal up.

* Science: study and take GRE; complete my currently-being-developed get-back-into-science curriculum
This NEEDS to happen SOON if I'm going to do it. I opened the book and read a chapter... I should make a study plan and pay money so I have a deadline...

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October 8, 2009


Chronology of Interests

Yesterday I showed CJ some stuff in Excel, which made me want to do some - I used to be the Queen of Excel! So I put together a simple little timeline of my interests over the past 13 years. It's silly, approximated, and incomplete (e.g. I omitted my one-summer long obsession with Batman and with vampires [before Twilight, please, give me some credit], etc.), but I had fun!

timeline of interests from 1996 to 2009
I ranked interest level in a topic from 0 to 10, with zero indicating I had a baseline interest about what the average person would have, and ten indicating near obsession. No value for a year indicated I didn't know / have an opinion about it.

Interests are organized in the legend left to right based on my first interest level, so 'mythology' is my oldest, highest-level interest starting in 1996, and 'steampunk' is my most recently begun interest.


October 5, 2009


Woods Wander - Foraging!

We went hunting for mushrooms on Sunday up in the North Cascades (off the Middle Fork) and found a ton of chantrelles, as well as some edible boletes and puffballs! There was plenty of fresh (still shiny) elk droppings, and CJ found large cat feces - too small for cougar I'd say, but it'd be a big bobcat... There were also a lot of pretty things in the woods.

striped shelf fungus growing off of a branch on a fallen log

decaying maple leaf resting on a sword fern

Pacific Tree Frog on forest floor
Pacific Tree Frogs have a distinctive "Y" on the top of their heads between their eyes.

swooshing half cedar stump - cj in the background foraging
CJ's in the background foraging. He has an amazing eye for spotting mushrooms!

geometrically pleasing moss- and lichen- draped branches

holding a western redbacked salamander
Tentatively identified as a Western Redbacked Salamander, with a broad stripe of red-orange (perfectly the color of old needles) down its back.

massive cedar stump with exposed roots

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