A Colony of Bats

I want trick-or-treaters this year & it seemed like having a big (& early!) Halloween window might do the trick. The idea & pattern for this Bat Banner came from HenryHappened. I liked the idea since it’s cheap, simple, & almost fancy looking. It reminds me of a beaded necklace.

Bat Banner

Pretty friendly for being a little spooky.

Buying a whole pack of construction paper just for black seemed like a waste. I bought a cheap black gift bag instead. This turned out to be a great idea; the white inside of the bag made it super easy to trace out the bats. I didn’t have a hole punch handy, so the puncture marks were made with a sharp pencil so that the bats could be hung up with twine.

Bat Banner in the making

Bats like to huddle together, right?

Of course I didn’t stop there. In addition to the usual farmers market gourds, I also grabbed a flameless candle on a timer from the drug store. It clicks on every evening before I get home so that I can enjoy it, too. The black cat was leftover from a crazy cat lady costume. The paper lantern moon was just a happy accident.

Getting Halloween ready

Had a few extra, so we stuck them to the window of the front door.

I cut out so many bats that I’m still trying to come up with places to stick them. Having temporary double sided tape has never made so much sense.

Now for some jack-o-lanterns & we’ll be set!

How Do You Make A Diptych without Photoshop?

Diptychs are awesome. The pairings offer a longer narrative and, at least to me, really communicate a feeling. The trouble is figuring out how to accomplish this look without using Photoshop.

I used to use Photoshop to make diptych and triptychs so often that I have a full album of ’em on flickr. Between then and now I changed computers 2-3 times, including a switch from PC to Mac, and my copy of Photoshop is no longer usable. Maybe it’s because I’m cheap, maybe it’s because E is a good influence, but this was a good time to try the open source version. Unfortunately I’ve found diptychs are more difficult with Gimp.  It has left me wanting to try alternative methods. Most places online will tell you how to make a diptych with a photo editor, but this discussion on the Flickr group “Diptych This” inspired me to try again.

All the photos below are from this past week, mostly Saturday while we explored Pioneer Square.

1. BigHugeLabs.com, Mosaic Maker

A Wedding march to the Sounders pitch.

The Mosaic Maker has several format options: Square Tiles, 4 with shadows,  Thin Frames, 1 large + 3 on the right, etc. The only one where you choose how many photos to use is the square tiles, and you can chose if you want it to be vertical or horizontal. Make sure to chose the right number of images; if you don’t fill in the amount of images it needs you will end up with blank spaces. You also can’t choose how it crops your photos, so this works best when your subject is centered. The interface uses urls and can pull from your Facebook photos.

2. dipty.co, a beta site

This site is a more artful way of making a diptych online. It has a simple two square box format, and the user has full control of the crop. The main problem is that it is all web hosted. You can share the image, but it is still two separate images & you can’t download the diptych. This seems strange when all the photos must be uploaded, no urls.

I’m still excited to see where this site ends up. It is really lovely to browse through their user contents. Check out my first try featuring urban art.

Edit, 10/5. They now have a download feature! Check it out:

Now in download-able form!

3. Power Point image grouping

Waterfall Garden in Pioneer Square. Never knew this was here. It’s also a block from the Gold Rush Museum.

This method was the simplest by far.

  1. Open up PowerPoint
  2. Open the two files (or copy-paste)
  3. Move and resize until they fit.
  4. Select them, right-click, select “group”
  5. Right click, save as picture. Make sure to save as a jpg.

It’s not the fanciest, you can’t crop and you cannot retain blank spaces between images, but man, it is so easy. Bonus points for the photos not needing to be boxes. I don’t love boxy photos.

4. Loving your full frame

Pioneer Square Firehouse

Obviously this isn’t a way to make a diptych. It’s just enjoying the natural repetition in the world around you. Sometimes that is all you really need.

What methods have you used to make diptychs? And which extension should I try for instagram diptychs for android?

Ghost Gallery Craft Night

Ghost Gallery opened up their doors for a holiday craft night yesterday, even while Laurie was prepping for the opening of the Matryoshka show tonight! Bring Your Own Crafts turned out to be a great idea
Craft night!
While most of us were making feltdecorations or a plastic bag wreath, two of the ladies got down to making a graham cracker gingerbread house. How simple & cute is that?!

Never mind that it kind of fell apart in the end. Let’s just call it a temporary installation. Want to join us next time? Craft Night on Facebook.

Hard Drive Earrings

These are the first earrings I’ve ever made! 
I made these!
I was deep cleaning the house and came across the stash of hard drive spacer rings that E saved for me. That’s the best time to stumble across materials, while the use-it-or-toss-it mentality is in full swing. I went to the bead store the next morning for supplies. A few jump rings later I had a complete pair of earrings. It feels great to be making things.

Pumpkin Carving

These were the inspiration ideas for each of our dream pumpkins:

By Yayoi Kusama
Martha Stewart’s Cookie Cutter Pumpkins

Pretty similar, right? So we went for it. We don’t have paint. We don’t have cookie cutters. What we do have is drill bits…

Pumpking Carving
Pumpkin Carving
Pumpkin Carving

And the finished product. Most of the holes and cuts are shallow, with every other small hole going all the way through for ventilation. What do you think?
Pumpkin Carving
Pumpkin Carving