Friday, December 21, 2012

Day 350 :: Saturday December 15 :: Ottawa

Have someone start something and then complete it yourself today.

This was a big one. About a month ago, a friend posted on Facebook about his intention to hold a polar dip event as a fundraiser for World Vision (specifically, clean water in Rwanda), and putting out a call for brave souls to take the plunge. 'What the heck', thought me, 'why not?' and i signed up. Over the next few weeks, friends, family and coworkers amazed me with their generosity, and i raised $815!

Then came today. Polar dip day. Time to (prompt alert!) complete what my friend started! Nervous? Yes, but two things really helped. First, I slept in fairly late this morning, getting up around 12:30 - with the dip scheduled for 2pm, this meant there wasn't much time between eating and getting ready to let the nerves settle in. Second, my spotter, Rookie (conveniently visiting this weekend) polar dipped last year and was very helpful with tips on what to expect.

And drumroll... At Britannia beach, on a sunny winter day, -14C, I stripped down to a bikini top and hot pink shorts, posed for the cameras, dipped a toe, swallowed hard and hopped in. @&$+*^%# it was cold! I was out 15 seconds later, shivering but proud of my accomplishment. The best part? Our group of 14 dippers raised $3000! I'm so proud of everyone!!!

Day 349 :: Friday December 14 :: Ottawa

Coming soon.....

Day 348 :: Thursday December 13 :: Ottawa

Medium or large? Work with a disposable cup you've gotten recently.

'Tis the season, and this fun reindeer was born soon after I finished drinking a festive Ferrero Rocher latte :)

Day 347 :: Wednesday December 12 :: Ottawa

Coming soon.....

Day 346 :: Tuesday December 11 :: Ottawa

Make a repeating image by folding  paper and cutting out the shape of an object or abstract pattern. Think of classic paper-doll chains and paper snowflakes as the inspiration for this one.

This is hands-down the most complex paper snowflake I've ever cut! I used a craft knife for most of it, and was pleasantly surprised to unfold it and count exactly twenty-four stars in it :)

Day 345 :: Monday December 10 :: Ottawa

Only work with the objects that are already on a table or desk near you today.

Hmm, my apartment currently looks like a crafter's war zone... two consecutive days of crafting have resulted in a lot of materials all over the place, which definitely provided possibilities for today's assignment :P But I'd also left my dad's birthday present out to be wrapped, so made the wrapping extra special with a few simple folds. Hope he likes it!

Day 344 :: Sunday December 9 :: Ottawa

Use stars, planets, and other things found in outer space as your inspiration today.

Once again, it's past my bedtime. So far today (which should have been a day to relax really) I've revised proofs, printed tags, picked up ribbon, groceries, padded envelopes, stamps and a Christmas present, finished gluing yesterday's little felt doves, sealed windows, swept the living room, ate chocolate, watched football, updated my daily creative book, addressed and stamped envelopes, finished the book I was reading....... Therefore, please forgive this simple, stars everywhere creation!

Day 343 :: Saturday December 8 :: Ottawa

Make something boring seem exciting.

Felt! Pattern! Scissors! Ribbon! Glue gun! GLUE GUN!!! It really doesn't get any more exciting than this :D Tonight, I made a bunch of tree ornaments! ORNAMENTS!! Pretty! Little! White! Dove! Ornaments! Rah rah RAAAAHHHH!!!

Are you excited yet? :D
(These little doves are made from scratch. I created the 3-piece pattern on a piece of cardboard, then the pieces are cut out of felt. Wings are first glued to the body, then the two halves glued together along the bottom. Tail feathers come next, then body stuffing, followed by gluing and stuffing the head, and adding a little 'signature' star. The only part missing is the ribbon and little 'made with love' tag (these will be added tomorrow or Monday). And then the fun part: giving them away :) They will be going to friends who've had babies in 2012 – the wing color indicates gender, the eye is birthstone.)

Day 342 :: Friday December 7 :: Ottawa

Create evidence of an event that didn't happen.

Hmmm, this leads me to believe that the rapture happened as I was eating breakfast...

Day 341 :: Thursday December 6 :: Ottawa

Coming soon......

Day 340 :: Wednesday December 5 :: Ottawa

Work only with what's in your pockets today.

Make your own Christmas cards.

The only thing I carried in my pockets today was a bus transfer and a used Kleenex (ewww!) buuuut I did redeem myself by making some awesome Christmas cards! These are a take on the 'christmas sweater', come in two colours, have a spot silver overprint and hand-stitched red accents. 

Day 339 :: Tuesday December 4 :: Ottawa

Create something that's only visible from one specific angle or location.

I used some scrap stapler wire for this, and it was a lot harder than expected to get the shape I wanted! I scraped the first two ideas/attempts before making this. The top photo shows the wire 'sculpture' from the side, the bottom photo shows the proper angle – it's a little flower!

Day 338 :: Monday December 3 :: Ottawa

Coming soon.....

Day 337 :: Sunday December 2 :: Hamilton, ON

Work blindfolded. Pick a medium you're comfortable with and make something that you can't see until you're finished.

It's 9:10 am, and my host is still snoring away. I'm lounging on the living room couch, with a hyperactive bearded dragon playing in the cage behind me. Can I doodle him, eyes closed? Let's find out! 

And just for fun, here's an actual picture of George the bearded dragon. Looks like i didn't do too bad!

Day 336 :: Saturday December 1 :: Toronto, ON

Censor something that doesn't need to be. Show it to people and see how they react.

I volunteered to do a delivery for work this weekend, because a) i love me a good road trip, and b) it would give me to chance to visit some out-of-town friends at the same time. So today, after about five hours on the road and a bit of heavy lifting (including one very happy client), off to the fun part of the weekend – lunch with wish-sister JoJo. Here's a picture of the two of us, bellies full of pho... of course, i had to censor it to protect the innocent. Also censored: the plate off the getaway vehicle :)

Day 335 :: Friday November 30 :: Ottawa

Make a structure to protect a delicate object (like an egg). Drop it from a second-story window to see if it works!

Hahaha oh man... I worked at a summer camp a few years ago, and we did exactly this during staff training week! The only difference is that our creation was launched from a large slingshot instead of being dropped – and our poor egg didn't stand a chance! Today I'm only drafting a blueprint (or blackprint since it's in black ink?), after an 11-hour workday and knowing i have to get up very early tomorrow to drive to Toronto, the construction phase will have to wait until a later time.

Day 334 :: Thursday November 29 :: Ottawa

Work only with bar codes today. Get them from items you own or make a new one from an unexpected material.

Not much time between work and ultimate today, so quickly made this bar code inside a frisbee using some black paper strips!

Day 333 :: Wednesday November 28 :: Ottawa

Make a unique trophy. Bonus: Award it to someone.

Had a fairly packed evening today – a tattoo, followed by a super amazing grilled cheese and Christmas shopping with a friend. So this trophy goes, in a three-way tie, to Jamie the tattoo artist, Melt the grilled cheese counter, and CA the shopping buddy!

Day 332 :: Tuesday November 27 :: Ottawa

Create a wheel chart.

Be inspired by a song lyric.

I've been listening to a lot of USS lately, and this particular lyric has really been sticking with me... There was no way a good enough wheel chart would happen today, so I made this over lunch instead.

Day 331 :: Monday November 26 :: Ottawa

Make a flower or other plant out of everyday objects.

The first snowfall of the season happened overnight, so I made these little flowers in the snow during my morning walk to work.

Day 330 :: Sunday November 25 :: Ottawa

Time for finger painting! Don't judge yourself, and you'll be surprised at how fun it can be when you can't be precise. Use any substance – just be sure that it's nontoxic.

I'm going to venture into a more, say, digital interpretation of this prompt... I've recently discovered / fallen in love with the app Draw Something. For those unfamiliar with it, it's basically Pictionary, except that the drawing is done with my fingers (finger painting alert!) on my iPhone. Then a friend receives the drawing and guesses the answer. So much fun, I love layering colour 'from the bottom up', ie starting with fills and adding outlines and details afterward. Here are a few of my recent masterpieces :)

Day 329 :: Saturday November 24 :: Ottawa

Work with only tissue paper or toilet paper today.

Sparkly white tissue paper + scissors + creative folding = pretty rose!

Day 328 :: Friday November 23 :: Ottawa

Make something with a snack or dessert before you eat it.

My sister is visiting this weekend, and to celebrate the occasion we went out for dinner tonight with some friends. This was her way of accessorizing my dessert brownie – with a slice of jalapeƱo pepper and a nacho chip. It's not much, but all that we were able to do while fending off six other forks!

Day 327 :: Thursday November 22 :: Ottawa

Create an alternate alphabet for a culture that never existed (from this world or another one). Bonus: Make something using this alphabet, like a sign or document, and leave it for others to discover.

This is an alphabet used by a star-loving culture! All letters were drawn using only full segments found between two points on a drawn star (see bottom right corner). I didn't get around to making a sign with it... hopefully another day!

Day 326 :: Wednesday November 21 :: Ottawa

Use the world of amphibians as your inspiration today.

I remember making many origami things when I was younger... I thought I'd revisit day 1 of the project by making origami frogs. One's plain green, for the other I printed some frog skin texture and used that paper. Harder than I remembered!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Day 325 :: Tuesday November 20 :: Ottawa

Create a wallpaper pattern using any technique. Extra credit: Install it on a wall or make a digital version for people to use on their computer desktops.

With winter looming, this was the perfect occasion to make a new desktop wallpaper for my work Mac. After all, the current one had been there for almost a year and was well due for a change. I put this one together over lunch from a bunch of stock images, and this is what it looks on my monitor!

Day 324 :: Monday November 19 :: Ottawa

Make something that wouldn't normally melt seem like it has.

Oh no! My pile of newspapers/paper recycling has melted in the middle of the living room!

Day 323 :: Sunday November 18 :: Ottawa

Work with only music media: old CDs, records, cassettes, eight-track cartridges, or reel-to-reel tapes, and/or their cases.

Today was a very lazy Sunday... And by very lazy, I mean I spent the day on the couch in my pajamas :) It was nice to have a full day to unwind! A big chunk of the day was spent watching football and texting with my buddy Rookie, making fun wagers on the outcome of the various games. And that's the story behind this unspooled tape football silhouette!

Day 322 :: Saturday November 17 :: Ottawa

Make alternate signage or images for men's and women's bathroom doors. Bonus: Convince someone to use them!

Simple and most importantly, to the point!

Day 321 :: Friday November 16 :: Winnipeg, MB

Create instructions or a visual diagram for something that normally wouldn't need them.

Guest creative day!! My friend and former ultimate frisbee teammate Julia (who recently moved to Winnipeg, boo!!) casually mentioned over the summer that she'd love to help with the blog. Of course i said yes, and today i hand over the reins to her. This is what she created. I'm impressed! :)

Here's my daily creative, that was a lot of fun! Thanks for letting me do one of these. 

I've been winter biking for about 8 years now. It's not something that I have to think about very much, but I get lots of friends who ask me about it, so I was inspired to diagram how to ride a bike in winter. Riding in winter is a lot of fun, but it's also challenging. It takes longer to get from point A to point B, but you get some exercise along the way and you aren't stuck on the bus like sardines wearing your warmest winter coat. I prefer to always bring a change of clothes with me if I am cycling to work or school since the clothes I bike in get pretty sweaty and also get dirty from road salt. In my first couple years of winter biking I fell over a lot, but then I got some studded tires (and learned to turn slowly and brake early) and I haven't fallen in a couple years now. Today I biked with some cross-country skis attached to my bike. I am pretty excited that I can use by bike to get around the city all year round. 

I've included some instructions on what to wear, where to bike, and how to bike. These are examples of the clothes, routes, and techniques I use, but they may not be the preferred method of all winter cyclists. The two most important things I've learned about winter cycling are safety and fun. It's not fun if you're always worried about getting run over or if you're too cold, so finding that balance will make it easier for you to stick with it. Happy cycling!

Day 320 :: Thursday November 15 :: Ottawa

Make a unique key and/or lock. Or make something out of key(s) and/or lock(s).

Two back-to-back ultimate games tonight means not much time once again... but I like this little pen sketch. It's the key to my heart, maybe? :)

Day 319 :: Wednesday November 14 :: Ottawa

Write a ten-word murder mystery. (Don't worry, you don't have to solve it.) Bonus: illustrate it!

There isn't much mystery to this murder... except maybe why they're so creepy?

Monday, December 10, 2012

Day 318 :: Tuesday November 13 :: Ottawa

Work with only rubber bands today.

Turns out I have quite the collection of hair elastics, so I used them to make this colorful star :)

Day 317 :: Monday November 12 :: Ottawa

Make something inspired by and/or that goes over a foot (yours or someone else's).

I strayed a bit from the prompt today, as this wouldn't really go on a foot... The most exciting thing to happen today was booking my flights to be home for Christmas and in Hamilton for New Year's eve, so I opted to commemorate those by using little feet to show my air travel. Maybe I'll even pace a bit on the plane – I sure am looking forward to seeing family and friends :)

Day 316 :: Sunday November 11 :: Ottawa

White or brown? Work with dry or cooked rice.

The answer is brown! And since today is Rembrance Day, what better subject than the ubiquitous poppy? And now, a moment of silence to honour our fallen Canadian soldiers.

Day 315 :: Saturday November 10 :: Ottawa

Create a tattoo or something inspired by tattoos. Extra credit: Apply it temporarily to yourself, someone else, or even an inanimate object.

Ha! I don't think it's too much of a secret that I'm quite fond of tattoos. When I noticed this prompt coming up earlier in the week, I pondered aloud on Facebook if I should get ink done. My sister and I had been tossing around the idea of getting 'sister' tattoos, either the same thing or something that would each represent the other. Then she commented on my FB post that '315' was her age in months – so what better day than today to get my tattoo done?

The wonderful Jamie at Living Colour did all the work, and 45 minutes later (which felt like the blink of an eye compared to my last tattoo sitting!) I was the proud owner of this pretty piece on my inner left ankle. My sister was the first to see it – via text message – and loved it :) Mission accomplished!

Day 314 :: Friday November 9 :: Ottawa

Get invisible. Create a clear version of something that's normally not transparent.

Tonight was girls' night out at the Wine and Food Festival (mmm scotch, bacon cupcake, the best cab franc I've ever had and five return trips to the raclette station!) so once back home I cut out the Festival's logo out of a transparency. Not overly fancy, but given how late it currently is, I'm happy I still have all my fingers attached :P

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Day 313 :: Thursday November 8 :: Ottawa

Work just with matches, flames, or fire today (but be careful!)

Another busy day, doing some overtime at work before dinner with visiting family then off to ultimate on a way-too-full-of-thai-food stomach... this to say that there wasn't much time left to work with matches, flames, or fire. Soooo...

...instead i decided to work on the inner fire. Tonight was my second game of winter league, and our first was, well, not the best (to be fair, it was the first game of the season with a brand-new team – lots of miscommunications, and we're still getting to know each other). It's easy to get a bit down or start off in the wrong headspace when that happens, so instead i tried to focus on my personal matchups and game, without thinking about anything else – or letting it get to me. 

It wasn't perfect, but i think overall i'm on the right path. The next nine weeks will tell!

Day 312 :: Wednesday November 7 :: Ottawa

Paint it black. Work only with black materials today. Try working on a black surface for a real challenge.

It's funny where inspiration comes from sometimes... I had a completely different idea planned for today's assignment, but working on a client's martial arts-related job late in the afternoon led me to go in a completely different direction.

It might be hard to believe, but there was a time in my life where I didn't know about ultimate frisbee. Those were my high school years, i still lived at home, and was darn passionate about one thing: karate. In May 1997, I competed at nationals, and while there met someone who would become one of my most valued friends throughout the next 1.5 years. We lived in different provinces, meaning looooong phone calls and rare visits, but somehow it worked. I then moved to Ottawa, and we drifted apart... until we reconnected via Facebook a few years ago. While I never personally achieved my black belt, that summer this friend gave me his as something to aspire to, and more than a decade later it is now the focal point of this assignment. And of course I will share this with him.

Day 311 :: Tuesday November 6 :: Ottawa

Create something that incorporates a mirror or reflections.

I have this pretty awesome mirror hanging in my living room – the 'frame' around it is a black and red bike tire! So why not add another little splash of colour in the shape of red half-stars? The reflection makes them perfect :)

Day 310 :: Monday November 5 :: Ottawa

Work only with items that would be found in a hardware store.

I really don't own a lot of 'found in a hardware store' items... These were made with the contents of a little catch-all jar containing odds and ends leftover items accumulated over the years. I didn't include nails as I've already used them in a prior creative assignment.

Day 309 :: Sunday November 4 :: Ottawa

Reinvent the wheel. Create something that can be rolled down a hill (with or without you riding in it) and try it out.

It's raining today, so I won't be venturing out to see how this rolls – but this is what custom wheels on my (non-existent) car could look like! This is only a few inches across, drawn on with a Sharpie Pen. Fun!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Day 308 :: Saturday November 3 :: Ottawa

Make something that you can only see properly from far away or at a great height.

This is a little weak really, but made this star off the side of the path where I went for a run earlier. I'm hoping it was visible from the other side of the canal!

Day 307 :: Friday November 2 :: Ottawa

Create something based on the shapes found in a plant in your immediate vicinity.

This is a rare time where I actually have a bouquet of flowers on my desk – yay reference! The centerpiece of the bouquet is a gorgeous sunflower. Have you ever stopped to take a good look at the centre of a sunflower? It's all perfect spirals from the centre outwards... very, very cool. This is my feeble attempt at the same type of spirals, using a variety of pop/juice cans and beer bottles. Not so bad really!

Day 306 :: Thursday November 1 :: Ottawa

What can you do with a pad of sticky notes?

The idea here was to cover a large area of wall with post-its then draw on them. However, the ones I got had weren't very sticky, and thus would fall randomly off the wall. This was about as large an area as I was able to cover (and I did pick up about half of these off the floor to re-stick them on the wall)... but as an aside, I do like how the random patterning of the notes looks a bit like fish scales.