Tag Archives: Amazon

International Women’s Day + Carrie Green

Today is International Women’s Day. Today is also the day I received my copy of Carrie Green’s book “She Means Business”. It’s not just any business book. It’s a business book geared specifically towards women entrepreneurs. It’s Motivational, Inspirational and dare I say it, Fun. 

If you’re in the USA, use this link to Amazon.com to purchase your own copy of She Means Business: Turn Your Ideas into Reality and Become a Wildly Successful Entrepreneur:


If you’re in the UK or Europe, use this link to Amazon.co.uk:


The fact that my copy of this book, a book geared towards Female entrepreneurs, arrived today, of all days, on International Women’s Day, hasn’t escaped my notice. I’m of the view that there are no coincidences in Life, things happen for a reason and at just the right time. 

So I’m taking this as a sign that I NEED to read Carrie Green’s book very carefully, and pay close attention to the information, advice and exercises within it, and just BE DARING to put myself out there, to start my intented Crafts Business NOW instead of procrastinating. 

Go take a look at Carrie’s site for Female Entrepreneur Association, of which she is the founder, there’s a plethora of juicy extras and bonuses that can be had there. If you’re already in receipt of the book, don’t forget to leave a review on Amazon for a chance to win freebies. Here’s the link with information on how to claim your freebies: https://m.facebook.com/groups/571014886425825?view=permalink&id=615166408677339

To all my Sisters in The Universe, if you’ve been waiting for a Sign to help you kickstart your life, this is it! We are Women, hear us roar!

Good Books On Canine Psychology

Just a list of some excellent books on canine psychology and training, that I’ve either read, am reading, or will be reading next. I mean training as in behaviour modification rather than teaching dogs to do neat tricks. And psychology as in how dogs think, why they act the way they do.

To anyone interested in learning more about canine psychology, I highly recommend you check out the courses offered by the ISCP. It’s a UK organisation but the courses can be done online from wherever you are in the world. You can also join in discussions and webinars, as well as their Facebook page, where you will get to know a large network of dog behaviourists and trainers.

Here are those books, in no particular order (as most of my readers are in America, I’m using the US Amazon site for the links):

Inside of a Dog: What Dogs See, Smell, and Know https://www.amazon.com/dp/1416583432/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_qNQxwb1W6ZYRM

Behavior Adjustment Training: BAT for Fear, Frustration, and Aggression in Dogs https://www.amazon.com/dp/1617810509/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_bPQxwb6SREME9

On Talking Terms With Dogs: Calming Signals https://www.amazon.com/dp/1929242360/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_RQQxwb9BXMSWJ

Charlie: The dog who came in from the wild https://www.amazon.com/dp/1845847849/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_9YQxwbXGC9E2Y

The Dog’s Mind: Understanding Your Dog’s Behavior (Howell reference books) https://www.amazon.com/dp/0876055137/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_aSQxwbC6A3RZC

Train Your Dog Positively: Understand Your Dog and Solve Common Behavior Problems Including Separation Anxiety, Excessive Barking, Aggression, Housetraining, Leash Pulling, and More! https://www.amazon.com/dp/1607744147/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_M6Qxwb31BZ9ER

Dog Training – The Essential Guide https://www.amazon.com/dp/1861442904/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_X5QxwbRH3AJZ1

Dog Language: An Encyclopedia of Canine Behavior https://www.amazon.com/dp/0966048407/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_1SQxwb98XZXM5

How Dogs Love Us: A Neuroscientist and His Adopted Dog Decode the Canine Brain https://www.amazon.com/dp/0544114515/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_wVQxwbV2YE2K7

Clever Dog: Understand What Your Dog is Telling You https://www.amazon.com/dp/0007488548/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_3WQxwb6TT9ANW

The Power of Positive Dog Training https://www.amazon.com/dp/0470241845/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_U1QxwbASCC48E

The Heartbeat at Your Feet: A Practical, Compassionate New Way to Train Your Dog https://www.amazon.com/dp/1442218177/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_8ZQxwbK38FF8V

It’s Me or the Dog: How to Have the Perfect Pet https://www.amazon.com/dp/1401308554/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_q7QxwbYZVHS3A

In Defence of Dogs: Why Dogs Need Our Understanding by Bradshaw, John (2012) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00C6PN6FS/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_u8QxwbX390H62

The Other End of the Leash: Why We Do What We Do Around Dogs https://www.amazon.com/dp/034544678X/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_6aRxwb38H4256

This list is by no means comprehensive. There are lots of other books on the subject, however I’ve only listed the newer ones. Some of the ideas and concepts in the older books have been debunked, or have fallen out of favour with the public, so they’re not on my list here.


Lagenlook Books

I was rather surprised to find that one of my recent posts, about layered and unconstructed women’s clothing, Lagenlook, was getting quite a few hits every day. It seems there’s a definite following of that distinctive style of clothing.

So, to help celebrate Lagenlook further, I’m sharing links to Amazon, of dressmaking books that fall under the category of layered, unconstructed women’s clothing, and its quirky Japanese counterpart, which is similar but more streamlined and minimalistic. There’s definitely more Japanese dressmaking books on this simple, unstructured, layered style of clothing than there are books in English. I guess you could say the Japanese have this thing all sewn up! 😄😄😄

The following books may be purchased from Amazon.com (most of my dear readers come from the USA, that’s why I’m utilising the .com site’s links rather than .co.uk).

Bold & Beautiful Easy-Sew Clothes: 15 Unstructured Designs That Fit and Flatter Every Shape, and Are Simple to Make https://www.amazon.com/dp/1250023653/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_uPFpwb4V4AM05


(I purchased this and can’t wait to receive it! I have a love-hate relationship with my cheapo portable sewing machine that I bought from LIDL or ALDI in Ireland. As in I love to hate it. Can’t seem to get the tension just right, and threading it is a nightmare. From what I remember, anyway. I wouldn’t know how my relationship with that sewing machine would be these days…as I can’t find the darn thing in the shed! But, if I do find it, and if I decide to try my hand at sewing my own Lagenlook tunics or dresses, I’ll be sure to write about it here! My sewing skills are phenomenal – by hand, that is 😄. My machine sewing…let’s just say the simpler the better! And this book claims its patterns are “easy sew”, let’s see if a numpty like me is up for the task).

Alabama Studio Sewing Patterns: A Guide to Customizing a Hand-Stitched Alabama Chanin Wardrobe https://www.amazon.com/dp/1617691364/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_f6Opwb5VYWZ6F

Stylish Dress Book: Wear with Freedom https://www.amazon.com/dp/0804843155/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_C4FpwbRADXEPX

Happy Homemade: Sew Chic: 20 Simple Everyday Designs https://www.amazon.com/dp/4805312874/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_Y6FpwbBRKXP91

Sweet Dress Book: 23 Dresses of Pattern Arrangement https://www.amazon.com/dp/1780671083/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_P8FpwbQBNM3AV

Interweave Press Simple Modern Sewing https://www.amazon.com/dp/159668352X/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_XaGpwbCZHS7KK

Simply Sewn: Clothes for Every Season https://www.amazon.com/dp/1620337290/ref=cm_sw_r_other_awd_jcGpwbB0DBEFQ

Giving It All Away for Free

I was reading Issue 9 of Renegade Collective magazine just today, and one particular article struck a chord in me. The article was called “The Art of Stealing”, and it was about one Lukas Renlund’s project called “Steal My Photograph! (SMP)”. Essentially, it is an Art movement where Lukas hangs framed prints of his photography on a wall in the street, with the invitation to simply take what you like. It started in Copenhagen, where the Finn was living and working, but now Lukas has taken his project to Barcelona, London and Cape Town, and is now preparing for a global tour. Each “exhibition” is filmed by hidden cameras installed behind the photo frames to capture the art thieves in the act of stealing.

Here are the videos of the Copenhagen, London, Barcelona and Cape Town “exhibitions”. Copenhagen Oct 2012, Barcelona Aug 2013, London Oct 2013, Cape Town March 2014.

The premise of Lukas’ social experiment is simple – steal a framed photograph, hang it anywhere you like, take a photo of it and email it back to Lukas. I love the idea.

A similar concept was hatched by my favourite Assemblage artist, Michael deMeng, called “Art Abandonment“:

Art Abandonment is a group designed to encourage random acts of art, left in various locations around the globe. The idea is that folks can make something and leave it for a lucky unsuspecting person to find. Artists can then post locations and photos of abandoned goodies…and finders can let everyone know that they are the lucky finder! O’ sweet abandon! So leave some art. Leave a contact email for the finder…and if you get notified share the message with this group. If you prefer you can use the contact email: i.found.artwork@gmail.com we’ll be checking it often and share the results.

Here’s an intro page on Typepad for full explanation:http://michaeldemeng.typepad.com/art_abandonment/   

Have fun!

The Art Abandonment Project is now also a newly published book by Michael and Andrea Mateus de Meng, available on Amazon.  I’ve just sent off for my copy, which I will share with my friends and hope that they will join me on this…as I  intend to give away some of my Photographic Art for free.

Actually, I’d come up with a very similar idea last year, which I mentally called “Random Arts of Kindness” and involved me giving out free art at subway stations, with the instructions that the recipient takes a photo of the piece and emails it back to me. Then last December I resigned from my workplace, which meant I was no longer commuting to the Perth CBD every weekday, so the idea went on the back burner. I did toy with the idea of having a Flash Exhibition at the Rockingham Library…but then quailed at the logistics of transporting the pieces and hanging them up and then the whole event being the world’s shortest exhibition lasting under 5 minutes as a flashmob of varsity students stole my Art during their tea break and I never heard back from any of the recipients. But now, perhaps, as a member of Michael deMeng’s Art Abandonment Project, I might be more motivated to get my arse into gear and actually practise what I preach?!




10 Things I Like : Real Living March 2013

Here are 10 things I like from the March 2013 issue of Real Living.


I’m a fan of multi-purpose furniture, and this sofa with storage space underneath gets my vote. Plus, it also unfolds out into a single guest bed. How cool is that!


This huge, comfy thing (I’m not sure what exactly to call it – a giant bean bag?) gets my two thumbs up too. It’s made from a patchwork of colourful rag rugs. It would be brilliant for kids to lounge on, and, judging by the size, it could quite possibly double as a comfy guest bed too.


And while we are on the subject of chairs and seats, here’s a nicely upholstered one that appeals to me, because of the fabric design and the attractive curves of the chair itself. This looks like a Jimmy Possum design to me.


I like this photo for the contrast between the light blue of the ground and the burnt orange colour of the teapot. The strange, fishing basket-like vase and the equally strange springs frame the picture perfectly. The lace doilies add a touch of whimsy as well as areas of white colour. This photo loosely follows photography’s Rule of Thirds principle.


I like the blue abstract painting in this minimalist bedroom. I got this book recently from Amazon called Acrylic Solutions by Chris Cozen and Julie Prichard. It’s full of ideas and tips on how to create beautiful Art using acrylic paints and mediums. I must try my hand at creating an abstract acrylic painting of my own.


This house with the grass roof is in Europe. It wouldn’t be recommended in Australia, unless you don’t mind your house catching fire during the hot, summer months. Bushfires are to Australia what snow is to Europe – you don’t know when it will happen, but it WILL happen. A grass roof might look pretty and keep the house cool during summer and warm during winter, but here in Australia it just says “Welcome, embers, come light me up!”


The blues and “ikat” style of these plates are attractive to me. I would love to see my own designs on china and ceramics, but at the moment the only permanent transfer methods available involve firing the pieces in a kiln. And I haven’t got a kiln handy. Other transfer methods involve water-glide decal papers, where the printed image on the decal paler slides off onto the receiving surface once it’s been wetted…but these are not washable and are only meant for decoration, not for everyday use. I have seen designs digitally printed onto Melamine plates and bowls, and that is something I must investigate, as those can be used for everyday. Melamine may not be as glamorous as china, but it’s come a long way since the 1950s.


Birds again. This time, it’s a fabric design. I would like to see how this repeats on a roll. Creating seamless repeats is something I taught myself to do a while back, without the use of Photoshop. But it is a hard thing to do.


Love the abstract art look and the shades of blue. Last year I came across a site called Constrvct who were running a competition for dress designs. So I submitted some of my own designs, and had a lot of fun modifying them to fit onto the various dress templates on the site. For my efforts I won $50 off my purchase of a dress. I didn’t buy anything though, as they were rather dear and I was broke. Have a look at the designs I created here (the website doesn’t have a dedicated page for its designers, so a screenshot has been used here instead. These are some of the dresses I designed).


My ideal garden shed. Right now my “studio” is a small spare room which doubles as the Nursery for our Japanese Quail chicks. It shares space with an incubator and a large brooding box, chick crumble feed, various water and food containers etc. The room also happens to be a storage room for various bits and pieces, books, clothes, boxes of art materials, canvasses, varnish sprays, ceramic tiles (!) etc. In a word, it’s messy. I would love to have a shed just like the one in this photo, tucked away somewhere in our garden, where I can work on my mobile photography art and designs in peace and tranquility. Too broke to buy or build a shed, though. Donations are most welcome! 😀

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Not Quite Photoshop…but close. PART 20. USEFUL RESOURCES

In this post I will share with you my list of books that I’ve found useful in my exploration of the world of textile design and pattern repeats.

For textiles, there are a plethora of books available. Some relate to the fashion industry, others to home furnishings. Both are equally useful if you, like me, are wanting to see your designs on a scarf or wrap, or as the cover of an armchair.

The book I like to refer to for inspiration is “Textile Designers at the Cutting Edge” by Bradley Quinn.

Textile Designers at the Cutting Edge by Bradley Quinn http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1856695816/ref=cm_sw_r_udp_awd_7bsMsb0XDQ0D1

Now, if it’s a primer on how to design fabrics, using Photoshop and Illustrator, I would recommend reading these 4 great books:

1) A Field Guide to Fabric Design, by Kim Kight A Field Guide to Fabric Design: Design, Print & Sell Your Own Fab… http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1607053551/ref=cm_sw_r_udp_awd_gesMsb00NR4A7

2) The Complete Guide to Designing and Printing Fabric, by Laurie Wisbrun The Complete Guide to Designing and Printing Fabric by Laurie Wisbrun http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1408147009/ref=cm_sw_r_udp_awd_1gsMsb0H18H34

3) Printed Textile Design, by Amanda Briggs-Goode Printed Textile Design by Amanda Briggs-Goode http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1780671180/ref=cm_sw_r_udp_awd_RjsMsb0RT6D53

4) Digital Textile Design, by Melanie Bowles and Ceri Isaac Printed Textile Design by Amanda Briggs-Goode http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1780671180/ref=cm_sw_r_udp_awd_RjsMsb0RT6D53

The book that is fast becoming my Pattern Bible is Jane Callender’s brilliant “2000 Pattern Combinations – a step-by-step guide to creating pattern”.

2000 Pattern Combinations: for Graphic, Textile and Craft Designers by Jane Callender http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/184994007X/ref=cm_sw_r_udp_awd_HtsMsb021ZCM0

In her easy manner, Jane sets out to explain how patterns are created, with diagrams showing each step. Everything you need to know about designing patterns is in this book. I can’t praise it highly enough. I want to run, not walk, but I find I have to make myself really sit down and read each mini-tutorial slowly so I understand how it’s done. Jane explain how patterns are created on a computer as well as freehand. My task is to challenge myself to see if I can replicate these using only my Samsung Galaxy S4 and Apps.

When creating patterns, you may want to find clip art or images to use. Try the Dover publications, Dover specialise in non-copyright images or those whose copyright have expired. They literally have millions of images available for use. Some of their books come with CDs containing TIFF files of the images, so you can download them to your computer to play with to your heart’s content. Be aware that there may be certain restrictions as to the usage of these Dover images, these will be outlined in the preface of their books.


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Blogs vs Websites

My blog site is http://www.alyzenmoonshadow.com

My website is http://www.alyzenmoonshadow.wix.com/alyzenmoonshadow

So why do I have both a blog AND a website? Good question! In my case, I didn’t have a website prior to May this year, until I wanted to be featured on Carolyn Edlund’s ArtsyShark page http://www.artsyshark.com/2013/08/09/featured-artist-alyzen-moonshadow/, and the requirement was to have a website. Not knowing any code (seeing even a page of it makes me fall asleep!), I turned to Wix. Over the last weekend of April I laboured over the Wix site, choosing my theme, colour scheme, fonts, adding widgets and other add-ons, etc…until finally, many, many hours later, I was able to produce the site you see above. It was quite an enjoyable experience, creating my website, even though loading the hundreds of images onto it took quite some time. I am now also an Amazon affiliate, so if you purchase a book from Amazon through surfing onto my webpage, I will be in line to get paid a few pennies.

But, a web page is a static entity. I regard mine as a depository for my best works, for images that I feel best represent me. My website is an online portfolio that I can refer potential customers or Licensees to, when pitching to them. Or simply so I can show my friends and family when they ask to see examples of my work.

A Blog, on the other hand, is a live entity.  It’s like an ongoing Journal where the writer shares his or her thoughts and creative processes, or ruminates on topical subjects, or has a rant, or shares a recipe. I only started this blog in July, and when I sat writing my very first post, I was thinking to myself “What the heck am I supposed to write about, that people will even want to read?”. That first post was the hardest to write, but it does get easier, believe me. Practice makes perfect, as the saying goes. The more I write, the more ideas I find to talk about.

I was reading a book called “Not Quite Nigella” the other day, bought as a Kindle edition from Amazon (so I could read it on my Galaxy S4 on the commute to work in the mornings, without having to lug around a physical book). The writer, Lorraine Elliott, started out by writing a blog about her Food adventures, and then her readership gathered momentum and grew exponentially over the course of a few short years…and before she knew it, the blog was being turned into an actual book. My readership number is still in the teens as I write this, but who knows, if enough people find my musings interesting enough to start following me, I may have the beginnings of my autobiography right here?  Or, I could get it printed for posterity and leave it to my son, so he can remember his wacky Mum by her wacky words.

So, I blog because I find it cathartic to write down my thoughts, and to share my knowledge with my readers, and make a few new friends and increase my social circles.  I keep a website as my online portfolio, and I update it once a month at least. There are many hosts for both blogs and websites, but I chose WordPress and Wix both for their ease of use. As I’ve said before, I’m not a techie, and I don’t want to be confronted with pages of mind-numbing and mind-boggling code.  I’m a cut-n-paste, drag-n-drop kind of girl! And for me, WordPress and Wix offer me peace of mind, and more time to do what I like to do, which is write and create more mobile photography images.