Saturday, April 19, 2014

Blogging for Beaders

This will be a series of separate blogs for beaders, probably more specifically seed beaders.  What I want to do is share some insight of my own for other beginner beaders.  I don't consider myself a beginner anymore, well at least not technically.  However, I think to some extent we are always somewhat of a beginner as our inspiration for design is continually changing then so must our techniques which means we are always learning, therefore - yep a beginner.

We can all view tutorials on YouTube and most of us learn to read a beading pattern and even some of us begin to create our own patters either on paper or in some type of beading software.  Me, I use both the graph paper and the software, but only after the inspiration has taken on somewhat of a final form in my mind, so that I have a very specific picture in my head of what I want, then I use the paper to try to figure out all the angles and directions that I will need to use to get to the finally product.

But, I digress, more to the point, this series is about the things that I have learned through my own experience that one should or should not do when beading.  Bear with me because I do ten to ramble a bit.

First of all and I think the absolute most important thing is lighting.  Now suffice it to say that I am about half-blind.  My vision is very poor and the lighting in my house is really sub-standard especially for any type of art work including beading. So what are the choices, a good overhead light, lamps, lots of windows.  Well yes, all of the above.  However, you need to decide what time of day you do most of your work.  For me that means in the middle of the night, when everyone else is asleep and the house is completely quiet.  This also means that I am totally dependent on artificial lighting.

I have a fairly bright overhead light at the ceiling so that helps, however, most of the time I find that it is generally either blocked by my head  because it is behind me or not direct enough because of where I sit.  So I procured a desk lamp, you know the kind, round base, little adjustable pole with light bent over where you work.  Typical light.  However, I have found that it does not help me.  If I happen to be working during the day, I still use it but find myself turning to the window so that I can see better.  So here is what I did.

I went to my local hardware store which for me happens to be Home Depot because that is where my daughter is employed, so I like to be loyal you know.  Anyway, I bought some of the ecolights, you know the kind, well here is a photo of one
See I knew you would know what I meant if you saw it.  The one I use is a 60 watt. There are higher wattage bulbs available.  But be careful that when you purchase, you make sure you are getting a "full spectrum" light bulb.  It may as this one does say "daylight"  This gives the best lighting and when you are beading you will notice a difference in how you see the colors of your beads, the colors are much truer than with regular light bulbs.  

If you work during the day and you live in the norther part of the country, you could simply use a north facing room for your work with lots of windows.  Here in the south though, we have what I am told is a more yellowish light from the sun, so even though light from my window is better, it is still not the best.

Just a word of warning with the above light bulbs.  They get pretty hot, so I don't recommend them for lamps with plastic coverings.  Mine is metal and I am very very careful not to touch the covering of the light because it gets pretty hot. but the light I get is well worth the effort to be careful.

I hope this helps and please stay tuned for more tips and insight into what I have learned that helps me to be a better beader.


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