Snow Sculpture

snow sculpture
Old rusty industrial items provide the form for this week’s snow sculpture

A Rusty Backdrop for Nature’s Snow Sculpture

Friday’s wet snow adhered to everything it touched, for a couple days. This included road signs, power lines, tree limbs, and rusty yard art. In this case, it created a fascinating, yet temporary snow sculpture.

This photo is a cool cast iron treadle powered scroll saw that I planted in the garden. Perhaps you’ll see it again, in the spring, when the snow is a distant memory, and the flowers are in bloom. One can only hope…

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A Long Shot – Right through the House

The long shot from the Living Room into the Kitchen
The long shot from the Living Room into the Kitchen

Note: In photography a “long shot” typically shows an object in such a way as to place it in some relation to its surroundings.

I don’t know why, but some days I just look around at things from a different perspective. Today I was given such an opportunity.

I am so familiar with every little thing in the cottage. This is because every item has a little story in my mind of how I came to find these cool little treasures. Then I look at the way I may have grouped items by shape, or color, or texture. Perhaps I glance from one side of the room to the other and observe a vignette that I staged last month and I am reminded of what triggered that design at that particular moment.

I admit, there are times I take the coziness of the cottage for granted because I am so very familiar with every element of it. But my husband Charles is different. He walks into the room and he sees what has changed and he wonders what makes me tick. He wonders why would anyone in their right mind to think to pair this item with that one? Yet he admits it works.

Charles sees the world through a different lens than I do. He considers me a sculptor. Though I am amused by his label, I can see why he thinks that. He sees my repurposing of things, and my pairing of various items, as building a three dimensional collection: a sculpture. I do not perceive myself as such, but I can see how he could come to such an analogy.

Charles on the other hand, sees things through shadows and light. I see a collection of old clay jugs. He sees the afternoon sun, from the South, painting parallel shadows across a row of old gray cylinders. This old house can be very dark, but when the sun crosses behind the house, across the pond, the southern rooms glow. Sometimes you can capture that light trickling into the northern rooms as we see in this photo.

Some other time I may tell you stories about how I came upon some of the items in this shot. But for now, the big discovery was that Charles found an old camera in his desk this evening. He had over 400 photos in it dating back to 2011. He showed me a few and said “Pick any photo, and write a story.”

So I chose this one, “eenie meenie miney mo”-style. I chose it because I looked at this photo and wondered how he could be so enamored with shadows and light. Charles wonders how I can look at stuff and see what he doesn’t see. I seldom pay attention to lighting, I am typically oblivious to it as I pass it day after day. But when I see one of Charles’ photos, I am reminded of how important shadows and light are in creating the mood I was seeking in my designs.

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Keep Your Treasures in Motion

draw the viewers eye by creating a sense of motion within each scene
Rearranging a few items, and adding a couple more, changes the whole look of the cozy corner. One item leads you to the next.

Let’s Define Motion

The key to moving products is to keep your Treasures in Motion. The dictionary describes motion as, “the action or process of moving or being moved.”

Sometimes this means you move treasures from one shop to another. Most times, it is simply a matter of managing your space.

Visit your shop space every few days, tidy up things and rearrange items to keep them in a position that makes them visible. Present treasures prominently. Rearranging your items keeps the space fresh.

Decorating as Art

Motion is not always the physical act of moving. Sometimes you must convey it visually. Movement within the context of art is, “A principle of design used to create the look and feeling of action and to guide the viewer’s eye throughout the work of art.”

Keep this in mind as you stage your shop space. Create vignettes that draw the viewers eyes from one item or collection to another. In this context, your goal is “guide the viewer’s eye” throughout your universe of treasures for maximum impact.

Make an Impression

Frequent shoppers notice a space hasn’t changed since their last visit. This is relevant because this projects the impression that your space is stagnant. Moving waters do not grow stagnant. The same holds true for shop space. Keep things moving and no one will ever accuse you of stagnating.

Your job is to convey the impression that you are offering treasures that fly off the shelves. Make it happen.

I recently spoke with a customer who mentioned that she had seen a unique lamp in my space yesterday. She came back for it today. I informed her that it was sold. Dealers in collectibles are not offering commodity products. If you see something you like, you had better snatch it, because my goal is to keep Treasures in Motion.

Happy hunting!

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