Category Archives: Creativity

Hopefully this will be the last memorial for a while….

My friend Charlotte’s mom, Lynne, was the most amazing artist.  There wasn’t a single art or craft that she couldn’t do and do well.  She was the kind of person who would wake up one day and decide to suddenly start making stained glass windows.  (my mom is a little bit like that too, although unlike Lynne, she has an Achille’s heel – origami of all things).

I ended up with some of Lynne’s fabric and a feeling that I should do something. When I heard that Charlotte was expecting, I decided to make a baby blanket.  I am not a quilter nor the sort of artist that moms seem to be, but I managed.

Almost all of the non-dino fabric is from Lynne’s collection; dinosaurs are the baby theme.  The amazing stripy fossil fabric is from our friend Miranda – I love her because she’s the kind of person who, when you tell her you’re making a dino quilt, immediately proffers dino fabric.

Memorial baby quilt with dinos!

Why I shouldn’t be left home alone with the art supplies: an exercise in procrastination

This is what I did on Saturday afternoon instead of working:


In my defense, wrapping a birthday gift was on my list.  Wrapping, note, not art project extraordinaire.

I started with some comic book coloring pages downloaded from Dover, a really awful gift box, and some art goodies.


I decided to cover the box up with random stuff and then have epic superhero woman as a topper.


The edges looked really terrible as you can see, so I covered everything with as much washi tape as I could.  This was my first real project using washi, and I have to say that I loved it.  I think it really saved the project, don’t you?


Next was the top, which had its own logistical concerns.


Happily the birthday boy was very impressed.  Less happily is that this is so not the work on the ethics of photography online that I have been trying to finish up for a week.  It’s coming though, I promise (to myself)!

Pinterest legals and ethics pt 2 – ethics

So Pinterest ethics.  The biggest one is that it is so easy to take an image or idea away from the original creator and leave it either un-cited or cited to someone else.  That’s one of the first things they taught us in grade school, right, to cite the original source?

Not citing correctly sucks for both pinners and pinees because: a) everyone likes to get credit for their own awesome idea; b) it’s hard to find more information if you’d like to learn more about the picture/idea; c) it makes it a lot easier for people to… borrow ideas.  This isn’t just about Pinterest – Allison reports that she had issues before, but Pinterest made it like “trying to put out a wildfire one measuring cup of water at a time”.  Can you imagine seeing your stuff everyday wandering around without you?  It’s especially horrible because Pinterest is otherwise such a great source of exposure for bloggers and artisans.

So credit for original materials check.  What other ethical responsibilities do we have as pinners? Frolic suggests (though not specifically for Pinterest) that we cite not only the source but how we found it.  I have to admit that’s something I’m particularly bad at – mainly because I’m often not sure where I found the link (I’m a bit of an open tab pack rat) and that I’m not sure how to do so gracefully.  I feel like it would just be a long path of x via y via z, via a, b, c…. It’s something I’m definitely going to now try to keep an eye on.

Killa b gives several more suggestions on ethically pinning – going beyond crediting to suggesting that we should add solid descriptions and hashtags.  I feel almost though like that’s going a little too far – where is the line between promoting others and also making sure that Pinterest is working for you?  I.e. I hate hashtags, hate how they look, and don’t use them.  If I would never use them, do I still have a responsiblity to use them for other people?  I’m not sure where that line is and I think it might be different for different sources – maybe not for a picture from Anthropologie but maybe for a tutorial from an independent blogger?

Further reading:

My previous post on the legal issues

What if it’s private pictures you don’t expect to see other places? (Instagram)

definitely a topic for another ethics post – do you post an item for sale as a DIY? (do it yourself)

Pinterest – legals and ethics pt 1 – Legal implications

There’s been a lot of chatter about ethics and Pinterest recently.  While following the discussion, I learned some surprising things about the copyright rules and legality.

I’ve been following a long conversation about the ethical responsibilities of Pinterest – how to pin, how to credit, but I hadn’t really thought about the legal implications until I read this from DDKPortraits.  In short, Cold Brew Labs technically owns the copyright to anything you pin.  You can be held liable for anything you pin that you don’t have rights to and anything you do they can use. (if you want more legal details, definitely check out the link).

I find this particularly interesting since Pinterest is the new big thing for companies.  Everyone wants to be on Pinterest, being re-pinned over and over.  It makes sense – it’s really good, free publicity right now.  But for companies that are so  paranoid about intellectual property, it seems odd.  It epitomizes the issues that companies have sometimes with social media – they’re so desperate to be there and using it that they don’t think it all or even some of the way through. Notably, smaller places/individual artisans are thinking about these issues, so it’s even more of an oversight imho.

Pinterest is clearly aware of and interested in the use of it as a sales/influence tool with the release of Pinerly – a tool to track the influence and spread of pins. Pinterest also called DDKPortraits to get her suggestions after the linked post so it’s probably safe to assume that changes are to come.  (which is awesome since I’d hate to have to delete my own boards).

Pinterest ethics to come on Wednesday.  Until then, here’s some more links on the legal issues of Pinterest.

Pinterest calls DDKPortraits

Pinterest editing pins for (their) profit

Another take on the legality of pinning

And for a bit of self-pimping – my Pinterest boards

Things I’ve been reading – lists

I love lists – not only because they make me feel like the organized person I long to be, but I also think that they can teach you a lot about how people think and dream.

Top 101 goals in 1001 days – Most popular goal is to give blood – wonder if that’s because it’s so public and thus performative, or is that really one of the most common goals for people?

How I Became My Own Mentor – To this end, my strategic plan features all kinds of useful lists: work that’s in process, work I’d like to do in the near future, people I’d like to work with, kinds of work I realize I hate, kinds of work that really lights me up, skills I’d love to learn.  Brilliant!  I need to do this in my next coffee shop time!

List of Lists that People Make – Lists are the butterfly nets that catch my fleeting thoughts. Yes!  I have way too many ideas to keep all of them in my head at any one time.

Using Trello to Organize – Look at that page of lists!  So pretty!  I like paper though so I’m not sure how well it would work for me.

Pinterest Board of Creative Journaling –  Part of why I like paper so much – can doodle, paste things in, make it 3-d.

The Most Amazing Journal EVER – A picture is worth a 1000 words here – you should go check it out!  I ordered a moleskin and washi tape just to see if I could use this to add a little more organization to my life.