Posts tagged open house
Open Studios: The Photo Booth

If there was one piece of the open studio that caused me the most anxiety, it was the photobooth.  From an abstract perspective, what could be better?  I am a photographer, I make witty designs...seemed perfect.

However, almost everyone I spoke to thought it was a bad idea. "People won't get it." "No one will want to do it." "I am not sure how it will go down with the crowd of people who attend."

Well, as I said to anyone who would listen, I would rather fail spectacularly than disappoint with mediocrity.

Fortunately, it was a huge hit, not with everyone, but the children who came (and there were a lot of them) loved it. 

The Set Up: I used the children's ikea curtains for the back drop, hung up on curtain wire. I used a friend's backdrop frame to hang the photobooth frame from. The frame was cut freehand out of cardboard and painted.I hung my reflector on the side to bounce a bit of light back into the corner


I used my 50mm lens on the 7d to photograph everyone.  Ideally I would have used something slightly wider, as the 50mm didn't leave me much room for error across the room.  However, the  15-70mm was in use elsewhere. We had originally set it up so that the camera would transmit the photos to the iPad screen, but the demise of the laptop ended that idea.

On the whole, people really loved having a play.  Many people did get their photos taken but did not give permission for their use on line.  All fine by me, but that does mean that the collage below is heavy on the Harrison-Goldin crew (not least because E wanted his photos taken with EVERYONE!!

(Just a sample of my favourites from the day)




Sadly, there was a major techincal failure, because of the ongoing laptop saga. I lost the best of the photos and was left with some rather poor quality jpeg backups.  I have really spent time tweaking my camera settings for my RAW files and all of the jpegs came out looking overcooked. 

Hey ho beginners mistake that I will not make again and I am hoping that when my computer is back with me with my proper editing software I can salvage some of them.

All in all, it was a lot of fun and worth doing again!


Forth Valley Open Studios (pt 1)

What a brilliant weekend, opening up my home and workspace to the local area to get the chance to meet my neighbours and talk about my work.

When I signed up for the Open Studios in January, I had no idea that things, life, would be so...crazy.  I had thought that I would make a bunch of hats to sell and that would be that.

Er, yeah, so that was binned.  And so, the challenge:

How does one make crochet design and photography eCourses interesting and enaging, whilest also fufilling your child's life-long dream??

Well, it goes something like this:


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Lemonade Stand:

Ellis has ALWAYS wanted a lemonade stand, after seeing them in America. When a friend suggested it, I knew it would be perfect. We positioned him out front and got a lot of traffic because of it. The lemonade stand is made from the cheap ikea kids table.  We painted the top of the table and chairs with blackboard paint.  The dowels are screwed into the sides and the bunting strung across the top, held by tacks. 

E was also responsible for the cupcakes, ergo he ate a lot of cupcakes. He loved it.  Kat and I are making a film of the day and I have some lovely footage of the song he was singing to get people to come to "buy" lemonade.



The postcards were from Mail Boxes Etc on their in-house card.  I clipped the corners for the rounded effect. I had originally hoped to do Moo postcards, but I left it too late.  However, I am very impressed with these and they worked out to be about £40 for 200.


Displays and Activities:

I found this bit the to represent my work well and in a way that is more coherent than it feels sometimes. Of course, readers of blogs "get" the whole photographer/crochet designer thing (I hope), but in real life they can be perceived as quite a strange combination (even if for me, they stem from the same need to get an image out of my head and into reality).

To try to convey all of this, I filled the house with photos. The photo wall is made of the cheapest of the cheap ikea frames. I laid them out on the floor and then hung them.  The frames are so light, they don't hang all that well, so needed a bit of blu tack on the back to get them to stay in place in addition to the nail.

Patterns, business cards and were generally on display and I transformed the TV shelves into a Capturing Childhood unit, with the videos playing on loop and course information available. 

I also ran mini-workshops on yarn dyeing with Kool-aid and spinning.  Far and away, spinning was the most popular. Everyone asked about the wheel and I was able to really spend some time with it.  I am so torn about spinning.  I love it when I do it, but I never have time.  I am always in two minds about selling it, but I just can't stand to part with it!


Well, I say that spinning was the most popular, but really it was this:


Come back tomorrow for some awesome crochet mustache action and a run down of the booth!