After finding a copper vessel for my dearly departed dog Red's ashes last week, I ventured out to Collage (1639 NE Alberta St., 249-2190, collageonalberta.com) for supplies. This tiny store is pure crafting madness. It's hard to remain focused when inspiration hits you like a truck, but I managed to get the job done. I decided to use images of Red in a collage/paper-quilt situation and somehow incorporate her tag. I loaded my basket with an assortment of crafty stuff: Diamond Glaze (water-based dimensional adhesive), acrylic gel, buttons, paper, paint, brushes, metal brads, a hole-punchy thing, ribbons, and, of course, glitter.
The first step: Selecting images. It took an hour to rifle through photo albums and compile a stack of photographs dating back to puppy-hood. I initially selected 75 photos, knowing I would have to veto most of my picks in the end. I shuffled through the stack a second time, trying to capture every aspect of Red's personality in an array of her favorite places. I ended up with 34 snapshots, each in need of some serious photo-shopping.
My friend Kathy was happy to lend her fancy computer and scanner to this end. Being considerably green in the realm of computer technology, I planned on emailing myself the files. Once she stopped laughing, Kathy lent me her "thumb-drive"— a portable hard-drive, basically, for computer twits like me – that enables you to send huge files without killing your computer. It took an hour to scan the images and prepare them for transport.
Back at home I plugged the "thumb-drive" into my "usb port" (not as sexy as it sounds) and the images magically appeared on my desktop. It took three hours to crop, re-size, and print the photos. I made them each between 1" and 2.5" in either direction. The downfall of not knowing much about Photoshop is that I couldn't prevent each tiny image from printing on a full sheet of paper. This was incredibly wasteful – what would Al Gore say? It took another hour to trim the photos using a straightedge and rotary-blade.
Armed with a stack of tiny images (of the sweetest dog in the world), a toolbox of crafting paraphernalia, and a copper can, I was ready to build Red's final sanctuary.
Next Week: Getting Gluey
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