CLAUDINE HELLMUTH
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Friday, June 29, 2007
illustration friday: twist
Here's my submission for Illustration Friday's theme of "twist"

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These gals are going to twist and stretch their way to better bodies! Speaking of yoga.... I am off to do mine now!

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Thursday, June 28, 2007
it's there!
The package that I sent to the Martha Stewart producer is there! Yipes! I am nervous, will they like it? What will they think? Did everything arrive in perfect shape? Will it go OK? Taking deep breaths it all works out!!

PS anyone else watching Hey Paula???

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lookie what I got!
In my quest to become a better "accessorizer" (because I am lazy, normally the only jewelry I wear is my wedding ring). I bought this necklace from here.

It's on its way to me! Can't wait!

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Wednesday, June 27, 2007
this just finished....
Here's an 11x14 custom artwork that I just finished up of this cute couple and their sweet doggie.

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As you can see the guy is a Florida Gators fan (go Gators!) so managed to work that in with a tiny logo on his shirt. This is the first picnic themed piece in a little while, I have another one in the works now!

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007
random thoughts tuesday
this is what I did today:
  • worked on custom artwork orders
  • wrestled with Stanley and managed to trim his nails
  • talked to my friend Missy
  • answered lots of emails
  • talked to Bernie
  • talked to Cynthia, she's coming over to visit tomorrow! yay!
  • asked my friend Martha if she will help me cut the wood for my frames on her table saw. Yes she will! yay! thanks Martha!! who knows! Maybe I will even like it and want one of my own!
  • discovered a whole family of tadpoles living in our fountain (even though it's on! I have no idea how they do not get caught in the pump!) I went out there to put some chemicals in the fountain to clean it and discovered tadpoles well on their way to becoming froggies. Of course now I can't clean the fountain until they are all grown up and move away!!

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Monday, June 25, 2007
monday, monday
Still working away on things here. I have been finishing up custom artwork orders and getting the stuff ready to send off to the Martha Stewart producer. Just about there!

Here's a custom sketch artwork that I finished up a little bit ago. This little guy is nuts for pirates so of course the artwork had to be all about pirates. I love the little dog in the front of the boat with his little arm over the edge.

I have been getting custom orders for my sitting poppetsĀ®! That is exciting! I think I'll have to add a section to my web site about that, hopefully this weekend. Also still working on the web site pages with the custom greeting cards too. Need more time!

I suddenly realized that I have 32 artworks that I need to frame up before I hang the show at Orlando City Hall on July 31st. I wish I knew someone with a table or circular saw that could cut all this wood for me. I hate cutting it all myself with my little hand saw. But I also refuse to use big and crazy power tools like a circular saw. I have a terrible fear about cutting off a finger or a hand. When I was a freshman in college they took us around the wood shop and told us all the horrible things that happened at each machine. Like "John Smith got his finger sanded off here" And "Bobby John got his scalp ripped off here" then they showed us PICTURES!!! I think they thought they were warning us so we would be careful but it did a little bit of too good of a job for me. Now I break a sweat just looking at any kind of power saw. *shiver*

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Sunday, June 24, 2007
crazy busy
I worked round the clock this weekend, getting everything ready for the Martha Stewart proposal. Whew! Almost done! Too tired for a proper post tonight, more tomorrow!

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Saturday, June 23, 2007
long day....
Today seemed like an exceptionally long day. I woke up wide awake at 5am after only 3 hours of sleep, full of worry and ideas and pent up energy. I worked on stuff until 7:30am and then went back to bed. Then got up "at my regular time" and worked some more.

About 3:30pm Mabel comes down with a weepy eye (it was fine all day! then 3pm it's weepy!) so I rushed her off to the vet before they closed at 5pm. These things always happen on a Friday just before the vet closes for the weekend, thankfully they squeezed us in. The vet didn't even mention Mabel's tubby belly. She's only 13.4lbs, but she looks MUCH bigger don't you think? She is on a strict diet and we monitor her food like crazy, she's just always chubby. She goes in next week for her annual exam, I think he'll probably bring out the fat cat-size charts then.

Paul left today for Ohio a reunion/50th wedding anniversary so I am left to my own devices for feeding myself. Fortunately he made Martha Stewart's Mac N Cheese recipe before he left so I am reheating that. Maybe it will last until he gets back on Sunday or else I'll be eating cereal and microwave popcorn again!

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Thursday, June 21, 2007
studio kitties
OK it's been a whole week since I posted pet photos, so here come some more! I snapped these photos of Stanley and Mabel in my studio today.

Mabel loves to sleep under my desk in a pile of gift tissue and Stan loves my colored paper tub!

Stan chewing on his own tail! silly boy!

Mable later on top of the desk!

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mom's favorite stuff
Thanks to Mom's Favorite Stuff for the great write up about my custom artworks! Check it out here.

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Wednesday, June 20, 2007
summer and winter at the same time!
Here are a couple of custom artworks that I just finished up! The first, a very summery scene and the other - all winter!

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This cute couple, love to spend their days at the beach and especially love kite boarding. I managed to work the kite boarding in by having him reading a magazine about it!

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This one was for a birthday present for the mom, they all love to go skiing as a family so I depicted them on a ski lift. I can't wait to hear how she liked it!

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Tuesday, June 19, 2007
Martha Stewart Living!
I am SO excited!!

Thanks to the amazing Holly and her interview of me on her blog, decor8 --- a Martha Stewart show producer contacted me about being on Martha's TV show!!!!

oh boy!! Now I am FREAKING out getting everything ready to send a pitch package for the show. Keeping fingers crossed that Martha likes what I send and I can get on the show!

yay and yipes all at the same time!

P.S. interestingly this fortuitous event has nothing to do with the artwork I gave to Martha Stewart in January!

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monday musings
I love it when I get gifties in the mail! Look at this gigantic box of ribbon that the sweet gals from Creative Impressions sent me! oh boy!! I can not wait to start using it. I plan on making a whole bunch more of my sitting poppetsĀ® and this will be perfect!

I spent today working on custom artwork orders, my goal is to get 5 sketch orders + 1 canvas order a week. So I am also working on a big PR campaign to boost orders. I sent out press releases to a few magazines, including domino magazine. Hope it works!

Then I was researching online backup systems. I think right now I am going to go with Carbonite. It's fairly easy to use and now I have 1/2 my stuff uploaded for the free trial. Mozy looks really hip and nice but now that I have gotten so far with Carbonite I am reluctant to mess with it anymore. I hate dealing with this stuff. I can always switch later if Carbonite doesn't work out.

After all that I started getting artwork ready for a show I am having at Orlando City Hall, August-October. I am seriously worried about having enough artwork for this show. Since I work so small (9x12 - 16x20) I don't know if my art will cover all the walls that I am supposed to. It is stressing me out. I have to turn in all the label information to them this week so I can't work on big stuff between now and then. akkk! Maybe the other guy who is showing at the same time can just take up some of my wall space!

It's late!! see you tomorrow!

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Monday, June 18, 2007
file back up services?
This weekend I spent some time looking into online file backup services. I am paranoid about losing my files. I have an external harddrive but it has started making funny noises so that's what prompted this sudden search.

So far I have looked at:

Xdrive (their web site gives me a file error when I try to upgrade to the 50GB so I am leary about it)

Carbonite (their free trial isn't working for me right now, grr!)

Mozy (cute site! I haven't tried the trial yet)

Does anyone use this sort of service and can anyone recommend one? Preferably one that isn't really expensive, like no more than $10 a month.

thanks for your input!

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etsy hand picked!
Thanks to Jennifer Perkins for letting me know that my Vespa Girl is on the front of Etsy as one of their hand picked items! wooo hoo!

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Have a great day!

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Sunday, June 17, 2007
happy father's day!
Happy Father's Day to all the dad's out there!
Here's a photo of my Dad when he was a little boy in 1952. Happy Father's day Dad!!
xxxox

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Friday, June 15, 2007
illustration friday: rejection
Here's my submission for Illustration Friday's theme of "rejection"


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I didn't have time to make a new artwork this week so I used an existing piece that I re-worked for Illustration Friday. This one uses more digital work that usual -- I had fun playing with the woman's face to make her look extra grumpy!

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indie entrepreneur
Thanks to Indie Entrepreneur for a great interview! You can read it here.

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Thursday, June 14, 2007
i am tired
I am exhausted and I have a huge migraine. So I'll leave you with a cute pic of Stan asleep in front of our computer. Note the blogger post screen in the background :)

Sweet dreams! nighty night!

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Wednesday, June 13, 2007
one of those days....
Today was one of those days that got sucked up by annoying errands. I hate it when that happens, it drives me crazy because the whole time I am running errands I am thinking "I should be doing this and that and the other instead of doing this" BUT I also need to run these errands. I always get a migraine and grumpy on days like this.

It started off good, I was working away, then remembered that it was time to get Mabel checked for her re-occurring bladder infections so off to the vet I went. They were busy there so it took a long time.

Then I needed to mail out a few packages. Rather than go to the Post Office I decided to go to a little Pak Mail place and send from there. The woman behind the counter told me that my global priority mail package to Australia would be $37. That's THIRTY SEVEN DOLLARS!! I was sure she had it wrong so then I went to the real Post Office and waited in line and they told me the same thing, that Global Priority Mail no longer exists (what!) and now you have to send First Class International or something. Grrr! So then I went back home and repacked my package and then mailed it off again.

Then I had to go to the drug store and other places and before I knew it the day was gone. Now I am exhausted! I wish I was one of those people who could run errands and do a million things, but I never have that kind of energy. For me, it's either work in the studio OR run errands. I can never do both.

So tomorrow I will get an early start and make up for lost time today! whew!

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Tuesday, June 12, 2007
this just finished
I just finished up this custom artwork of this cute gal and her kitty.

It was a bitter sweet artwork to create because her cat went over the rainbow bridge just before she ordered this piece. Which is why I chose to give him wings. I also included a small butterfly which is a symbol of rebirth.

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custom note cards now available!
Anna Bella Stationery and I have collaborated to create note cards featuring YOU!

Now you can have your custom artwork printed on note cards that you can send to your friends and family. You get the artwork and the cards! YAY!

HOW IT WORKS:
Commission me to create a custom artwork. Then, after it's finished you can go to Anna Bella to place your stationery order - they'll have a special link set up just for my customers, which I'll will pass on to you as soon as it's ready. But for now just shoot me an email. Anna Bella will coordinate with me to receive your artwork and will then send you several online proofs to view. Once approved your cards will be printed on their signature linen stock with rounded corners and coordinating linen envelopes.

WHAT IT COSTS:
There is a one-time $15 set up fee which includes color correcting, and unlimited online color proofs. There is no minimum to meet - you may order 1, you may order 101 and everything in between. When you re-order cards you will not have another set up fee. A2 notes with blank envelopes are $1.35 each. A2 notes with your return address on the flap are $1.89 ea. All cards are hand folded to ensure quality and shipped directly to you from Anna Bella's studio in Orlando, Florida.

If you've already worked with me on a custom artwork and would like note cards created from that image, email me to get things started!

I'm also working on a collection of Wedding Invitations with Anna Bella, which we can't wait to show you - coming soon!!

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Monday, June 11, 2007
stanley get down from there!
Stanley gave us the fright of our lives when we discovered him lounging around way-up-high on our plant shelves. He of course thinks it's loads of fun! I don't know how he figured out how to get up there!

There's Paul trying to make sure he doesn't jump down at the wrong place! We had to show him the way to the fridge, then the counter, then back to safe ground. Whew!

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Sunday, June 10, 2007
sopranos finale
Anyone else feel like the Sopranos finale just wasn't what they hoped for? My mom loved it, but Paul and I wanted more "final-ness" the finale. I really thought something big and crazy was going to happen and feel let down. Bummer. Oh well. I'll miss Tony and the gang on Sundays!!

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my new etsy store!
I didn't get everything uploaded just yet, but enough to launch my new etsy store! So here's a preview below! I am still messing with the preview images, darn etsy crops them in a square and some of my heads are getting cut off!

Etsy: Your place to buy & sell all things handmade
claudinehellmuth.etsy.com


PS If you are interested in a Metal Sitting Lady Poppet® with your own photos, they are $45, just email me and I'll send you info.

PPS. OK now I'm really logging off, The Sopranos finale is almost here!!

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etsy store! well almost.....
I have been working all weekend on an Etsy store and the whole site seems really slow. The images take forever to show up, and not just on my store, on many, many stores.

I stopped uploading items because I couldn't see what I was doing without the images showing up. Grrrr!! Anyone else??

EDITED 8:30pm EST: I checked now and it seems to be working. yay! Now off to watch the Sopranos Finale!!

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Friday, June 08, 2007
illustration friday: suit
Here's my submission for Illustration Friday's theme of "suit"



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No time this week to make a new piece, But I think this one works with the following quote:

"Mathilda was determined to fit into her new bathing suit...."

And here's a true confession: I have not owned a bathing suit in 5 years! This year I promised Paul I will go and buy one so we can go to the beach. Target here I come!

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Thursday, June 07, 2007
happy birthday paul
Happy birthday to my wonderful husband!!! I am so lucky to have you in my life! I love you!


no text?
My mom tells me that when she looks at my blog, the post below only shows the image but no text. I can see the text in both IE and Firefox can you?

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Wednesday, June 06, 2007
rainy day
It was crazy rainy here today, which is a good thing because we need it. Everything is parched.

But the cloudy rainy weather made me sleepy all day. I had a hard time working. Toby didn't like it because it ruined his walks and Stan and Mabel aren't happy about their favorite bird watching seats on the porch being all wet!

Even though it was rainy and I was sleepy, I did get some work done.

I got a couple of custom artworks further along. One is a big one with 8 people in it! It was giving me a hard time, figuring out how to dress everyone so they don't clash, but I think I managed to beat it into submission. I had to put it away and will look at it tomorrow to see if I liked what I did today!

Tomorrow I have to run some errands in the morning, my sister in-law and I are inventing something and we have to pick up the prototype - it's top secret, so I'll tell you more later!!

Then tomorrow night we are going out to dinner, it's Paul's birthday! Happy birthday to my wonderful husband!

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Tuesday, June 05, 2007
it's tuesday!
Not much super exciting going on around here today. Just working on stuff and getting orders done, sending out press releases trying to drum up good PR. I'll let you know if it works!

I talked to Bernie on the phone while she was driving back from Wisconsin and she has found a forever home for Noel! Yay! I can't wait for her to blog about it tomorrow!

Also all 84 (wow!!!) of the puppies and kitties from the last 2 transports have been adopted out! These are all fur babies who wouldn't be alive if it weren't for all of Bernie's hard work and YOUR donations! That is so exciting! Thank you to everyone who donated to Bernie and helped her. Unfortunatley more money is always needed, so please think of Bernie when you would like to help out a good cause.

Here's a new photo of Mabel! I couldn't resist! I am going to have take some pics of Stan too, I've been on a Mabel photography trend lately!

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Monday, June 04, 2007
this and that
Today was a busy day! I did all sorts of phone calls and house-type things: I called 2 tree trimming companies to get estimates (the trees need to be trimmed before hurricane season really gets going), called the pharmacy, did the laundry and figured out (I think!) what's wrong with our microwave.

On top of that I got a lot of work done on new custom artwork orders. Also discovered that yahoo email customers seem to be having trouble getting my emails. That is disturbing. I don't like to think of people not being able to get my emails. Don't know what is going on there.

Here's a custom artwork piece that I finished a little while ago, around Mothers day! Love how this one turned out. Ok! Back to work for me on Father's Day orders, I can't believe it's almost here!

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Sunday, June 03, 2007
another weekend over
I can't believe another weekend has come and gone! This weekend I:
  • did my second quarter taxes
  • watched The Queen thanks to netflix
  • went to The Enzian and saw The Waitress (loved it)
  • did the housework, cleaning etc.
  • paul and I fixed a gutter that the roofers broke
  • went to dinner with our neighbors
  • dropped off a journal at lynn's studio
  • packed up 3 custom artworks to send out tomorrow
  • tackled lots of email
  • now I'm getting ready to watch the Sopranos!

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Friday, June 01, 2007
illustration friday: paradise
Here's my submission for Illustration Friday's theme of "paradise"


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This is a piece I created quickly today just for the theme! When I think of paradise, I think of a relaxing day in a bathrobe, hot chocolate, a kitty cat for company and lots of time to do nothing!

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