Friday, 31 December 2010

P.S. to the previous blog: since my blog of the mid-December Rod has had a couple of really excellent reviews of "The Demi-Monde: Winter", notably, in "SciFiNow" and on ! So, I suppose, I should delete my post and just be happy! :)

Happy New Year and Keep Lampworking!

After a long sulking pause I'm back in the saddle! Lots of things have happened since my last blog, some of them excellent, some of them not so good, but the mood today, on the last day of 2010, is to go into the new year with a cheerful smile.

I always make the "Berry! Christmas" beads for Christmas. Today, however, I've decided to show one of my other "winter festive" beads. It was made on a pink dichroic base, which you can just about see on the close-up photo. There are some large melted-in transparent green dots encased into crystal clear. The rest is just the surface decoration. The branches were made with my favourite encased stringer, with Dark Silver Plum instead of black - it gives these lovely charcoal-silvery lines which catch the sun. There are blobs of transparent grass green, paddled, then pulled in the shape of a holly leaf and finally cut with the razor tool to give this "veiny" effect. When you look close, of course, especially in the sun, this cutting has given the leaves an almost marbled feel - brilliant! And, to finish off, a couple of red dots for berries: light red opaque as a base, covered with a dot of striking red - or even orange if you want a brighter colour.

To finish off, I part-etched the bead: the clear background has this soft glow perfectly offset by the frosty shine of the holly branches, leaves and berries.

May I wish you all a peaceful and prosperous New 2011 Year, with lots of happy and exciting things! Happy New Year! xx

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

No, not very happy at all.

After lots of travelling lately today I was poorly and had to stay in bed until after lunch - this never happens. Then I got up only to discover that I didn't win anything in the Beads & Beyond competition this year - what's new. The only thing I can say is that my understanding of "original" differs a lot from the majority of the B&B readers and judges. I thought Becky Fairclough's Peacock was outstanding. But never mind.

The most horrendous thing though was the review of Rod's book "The Demi-Monde" in the SFX which came out today. It was just a pack of lies and made up crap written in the most malicious way. I couldn't believe what I was reading. As if the reviewer was envious that it wasn't himself who had come up with this brilliant idea for this brilliant love story - you see, they call it "steam punk", but in the end it is a beautiful novel about real love and real heroes. With lots of good humour and wit - so enjoyable!

It was very much like when they reviewed my album "Jazz Noir" in "Jazzwize"; I still remember the ending: "...And "The Boy From Ipanema"? - ouch!" - I am not pulling your leg, these are the very words that prat used!

This review thing made me so cross, I had to write it all down in my blog to calm down a bit. The book, according to this person, is so bad that he gave it three stars and said that it would keep you hooked. I just hope that all those people in Poland, Russia, Germany, Italy, the rest of Eastern Europe, who have bought the rights to the book and are now busily translating it, and, of course, guys in the US have seen something in this book that Mr Holt of SFX has failed to see - or, maybe, he got a bit jealous?