Friday, February 05, 2010

Break a Leg! And Other News!

And I almost did! When I fell down the stage steps last night after the final dress rehearsal.

You can call me Grace....

(Don't worry, I was fine. I was saved by the newly applied stage flora, much to the set designer's chagrin, I might add.)

Everything is set for tonight, I am nervous as a badger crossing a rural UK road (apt if you could see how many of the poor things are roadkill here), but excited to finally get on with it! I am particularly nervous about tonight's performance because all the mums from school will be there and, as I understand it from stories of previous years, they are quite the peanut gallery. As my performance is ripe for hooting at, I'm worried I'll get flustered and lose my place.... but am hoping that the hours of rehearsals will pay off and I will plow through no matter what.

For those that asked in the comment section, but I have not had a chance to respond to (uh, that would be ALL of you.... sorry about that), I have every intention of posting a video of the show highlights. :) It is getting filmed tonight and my camera is one of the ones being used, so I'll post when I get it back.

OK, so the other big news!

Before the play tonight, I am going to a photography exhibition at Sir Harold Hillier Garden. It is a preview, actually, and I'm going because I have four photographs in the show! This is my first exhibition, so I am pretty much over the moon about it. The exhibit is called: Our World Through the Lens. It is all nature photography from Hampshire county artists and I got accepted into the exhibit at the beginning of December. A new friend here, who is a painter and extremely talented (check out some of her work here), looked at some of my photos on my iPhone (yet another reason to want one!) one night when we were out and told me about the show, which she knew was on the schedule at Hillier's as she was setting up for a show there at the time. She talked to the woman who organized the shows, gave me her email, and I emailed her, ran the gauntlet of paperwork, assessment of my photos, and fees (yes, fees are a big part of exhibiting).... and here I am, attending the opening two months later.

The road was fraught with difficulty, as these things so often are, if you are a member of the Furious Five family.... First, I wanted one of the prints on canvas, not framed, and taking the advice of a national UK photography magazine, I sent off my digital file and £50-ish to their top-rated photo canvas outfit. It came back two weeks later and .... I HATED IT. Hated the quality of the canvas, hated how the print looked, hated pretty much everything about it. So, I got busy (this was near Christmas) measuring everything and ordered frames and prints online. The frames arrived in early January and the photos arrives a week later. Mom was in town, so I was waiting until she left before I put them all together.

What a mistake!

I finally sat down to start assembling everything a couple weeks ago (all artwork was to be turned in on the 3rd of February) and found ~much to my horror~ that I had measured the mount openings wrong on three of my four frames! The openings were too big, rendering them unusable. Not a catastrophe, I assured myself, I just needed to order new mounts, which are cheap, and be sure to measure correctly this time. Sigh. So I placed the order for new mounts and then set to work getting the one frame done that I had measured correctly.

For this one I had paid extra to get a tacky mount board (instead of using archive tape to position your photo securely in the mount, you just place it on the board). I took a look at that board and thought to myself, "Hmmm, this looks like it might be trickier that it looks. I should consider whether air bubbles under the photo will be an issue, I should measure off and mark where the photo should go, etc."

So what did I do? I ripped off the sticker backing that covered the tacky surface and held my single 12X15" print over it, trying to decide how to go about this the best way. Apparently, this was the worst way to go about it because, the photo touched the surface and clung. Tightly. I pulled the photo up and off of it.

AND CREASED THE PRINT in the process.

Ruining it.


Okay, so there goes an £11 print. I can frame it for myself later, I don't mind small creases, right? Nope, not me. :)

So, I start thinking that I wasn't completely happy with that print anyway, so I quickly order TWO copies of a completely different photo that I've taken since I applied for the show. Those arrived, along with the new mounts last Saturday.

So, in addition to the play, I had to get all these photos framed up and ready to turn in on Wednesday morning.

I will not bore you with any more details except to say that I'm really happy I ordered the second 12x15" print because the first one was ruined by a grain of sand (wtf??) that got into the frame and made a perfect little grain-sized dent in the almost exact center of the print. And that trying to keep photos, mounts, and glass pristinely clean and dust-free in a house that is inhabited by two adults and three children is almost impossible.

The most important thing I've gleaned from this experience? Next time I do this, I am not going to bother with taking the cheaper route of framing them myself, I will send them off to have a professional do it.

Really, what was I thinking?


Thank you so much for all the well wishes over the past weeks. It has meant a lot to me!


If you are going to BlogHer or just thinking about going to BlogHer, please check out their "Room of Your Own" proposals page, this one in particular:

How To Take Better Pictures For Your Blog (Or Just Edit Your Crummy Photos 'til They Look Awesome)

I need to re-write it to add that the fabulous Pauline, aka @OHmommy, from Classy Chaos will be joining me as a presenter, should we get enough people to say that they "would attend" and the powers that be at BlogHer choose our idea to be in the final schedule for the conference in August.

Please help us get this session on the schedule! Whether you plan to be there or not, please vote by clicking the link above, log on to BlogHer and then click “I would attend this session” (it’s just above the title). After you click it it will say “I would not attend this session.” This means that your vote for the session has been successfully registered.

Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Especially, thank you to Ann of Ann's Rants, who gave me the idea and said "Go. Put in a proposal NOW." Thanks, Ann, you're the best bloggy-bff a girl could have.


  1. I expect that your performance will be loved and admired and talked about by everyone.
    All the best!


  2. Im feeling busy and rushed and hassled just reading this post!!! Again, break a leg tonight and wow--well done on the photography exhibition as well!! Those are beautiful photos.

    Looking forward to the vid highlights!!

  3. Your life has really taken of in the UK. You can feel the enthusiasm in your writing.

    Have a wonderful show & exhibit!

  4. Congrats on avoiding bodily harm and getting in the exhibit. What's next -- Page 3 Girl?

  5. I paid $275 to get a vintage 3 foot by 5 foot poster framed. It was hung for about 3 months when something caught my eye and I realized the STUPID framer had molted 2 of his small black head hairs on to the poster and FRAMED IT LIKE THAT.

  6. i am SO excited for you. your photos really are amazing. i hope you remember all of us little peeps when...

  7. Did someone film the dress rehearsal when you fell?

    Good luck and I hope it all goes smooth. I can't believe how much trouble you had with your photos. Did you have to have them in frames? could you just mount prints on foam core. Sometimes that can look super awesome. And it is CHEAP!

  8. Your photos ARE amazing! I'm thrilled for you that they'll be seen by more people with this exhibit. How exciting! Hope you thoroughly enjoy everything you're involved in this weekend!

  9. No matter the trouble, the photos look absolutely beautiful! Good luck this weekend with both adventures.

  10. Good luck with the exhibition. What excitement you're having. Enjoy the opening.

  11. Ohhhh, fun!!! I would go anywhere to hear you talk!! And, I am so thrilled that you really seem quite at home abroad. You would shine anywhere. :)

  12. Congratulations on the exhibition, your photos are wonderful. Can totally relate to the placing something on to a sticky background, did that last night, and couldn't take it off as it was the only one I had. Fortunately it wasn't something for an exhibition. Would love to be able to go to BlogHer, maybe one day, sigh!

  13. Good luck Amy ! Thinking of you tonight Xp

  14. This is so exciting, you's photos are going to be on a show!! Sounds bloody complicated to get them all ready and a real pain, but heck, ON A SHOW! So awesome.

  15. I am overwhelmed by just reading about all you are doing, my talented friend.

    Thanks for the shout out.

    CANT WAIT to see the video footage!

  16. What DON'T you do?

    I'll absolutely vote for your Room of Your Own - especially since I will actually be there to attend!

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