16 July 2009

Weekend Window Shopping @ajsdesigns

This weekends Window Shopping feature comes from the store of ajsdesigns. She has a wide selection of wonderful handmade cards in various stores. (They are listed at the bottom of this post)

I am now residing in Tulsa, Oklahoma. I am married to a wonderful man. (I count my blessings every day. And, I make him count at least once a week.) We have two beautiful children, a daughter and son. Our daughter has given us two grandsons who are now age 14 and 11. Our baby, well he's 27 now, just married a beautiful woman in January. No grandkids there yet, he is still in law school.

I opened my Etsy shop http://ajsdesigns.etsy.com in February 2007. I really got busy with it in 2008. I still do not have everything posted.

I sell collage art, handbound journals, mini wall art (collage on stretched canvas no larger than 5"x7"), art cards, greeting and note cards, mandalas, mandala art cards, seasonal items such as ornaments and holiday cards. Just about everything I create involves paper and rubber stamps.

I cannot live without rubber stamps and paper. Rubber stamps are the greatest. I had to learn that a rubber stamp is a tool. What I do with that tool is the fun part. I have an over abundance of both and I still keep collecting both. If I every decide to have a garage sale, just to clean my studio, I would probably be able to make the next two house payments. The other items that I could not live without are my X-Acto knife, paper trimmer, watercolor brushes, watercolors of all kinds, and rulers.

I have always been drawn to paper. I remember while growing up making my own "little books." Some were small enough that Barbie could hold them. And then I did grow up and was lucky enough to land a job in a print shop. Thus began my career in graphic arts and print production. I was introduced to typesetting on some of the first photo type computers (I'm getting ready to show my age here). And I gained experience in operating printing presses. I realized then that some of the art that I created I could reproduce. Reproduction involved typesetting, dark room work (shooting negatives), burning printing press plates from those negatives to make the positive, getting the press ready to make the job complete. The most fun was choosing the paper for the job. I could not wait for a paper salesman to come and peddle their wares. They brought the most beautiful poster samples that was printed on "the stock of the month." Now began my second career in collecting paper. The fire marshal would probably have a few words of concern.

My studio is a 6'x8' attic room. I have spilled over into the attic for storage. Whatever project(s) I am working on seem to over flow onto the stair landing. If I am doing a lot of tearing and meticulous trimming I will be in the living room and/or sun room. The dining room table I use as a catch all and packing for art festivals. I store my inventory in the spare bedroom closet. My shadow box frames are stored in the downstairs hall closet. My husband and I share an office with our computers. He's the Director of News and Analysis for RigData and he telecommutes. He's also a writer. Hmm..two creative people living together 24 hours a day. I do allow him to have his own desk in our office and he gets to use the kitchen table in our sun room. Hey, I had to learn to not talk to myself.he thought I was talking to him!

My craft is rubber stamp art and I am self-taught. I was needing a creative outlet. During a year of watching Carol Duvall and the rubber stamp segments, I kept repeating to myself, "I could do that." I guess that my husband got tired of me talking to myself and bought me my first rubber stamps as a Christmas gift. I already had all the paper stock and he knew my creative side. He did create a monster. He asked me "just how much paper and how many stamps do you have?" Needless to say I changed the subject.

I have one Etsy shop: http://ajsdesigns.etsy.com

I do have three other online shops. They are:

I also have a blog. The majority of what I write are spotlight blogs for other artisans. My blog is http://ajsdesigns.blogspot.com

Wow, that is a long post. I am off to a craft fair on Sunday so (hopefully) I'll be picking up a lot of wonderful new supplies.

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