Archive for August, 2012

The Butterfly

The Butterfly by Karissa Cole

The Butterfly Series 1 by Karissa Cole P1

One of my favorite things to do on beautiful days like today is to head outside and see what I find through my camera lens. These photos I took in the garden in my own front yard with an older film camera.

I think this butterfly liked me. It just let me follow and snap photos as it graced all the flowers for about an hour that day.

the Original Accordion Hero

When I was a kid, Weird Al Yankovic was my all-time favorite artist. I remember I had a few of his cassettes – “The Food Album” and “Dare to be Stupid” – and I’d put a tape in my little Walkman, put on my headphones, and every night I’d fall asleep to songs like “I Love Rocky Road,” “I Want a New Duck,” and “Taco Grande.” I loved them all.

Come to think of it, Weird Al was pretty much the only music I knew (besides stuff I got from my parents like CCR, the Steve Miller Band and Harry Chapin) but I was perfectly content with that.

Although Weird Al no longer encompasses my entire music collection, every now and then I still go through and listen to my entire list of songs all day; which, yes indeed, is what I’ve been doing today. And strangely, although not having done much digital work, I kind of felt inspired:

the Original Accordion Hero (Pop Art by Karissa Cole)

I don’t know what made me think of it, but listening to “White and Nerdy,” “Perform This Way,” “Yoda,” – more of my favorites – the idea just popped into my head. I found this photo by Dwight McCann and used it as a reference for my vectorish pop art fandom piece here.

In a sort of ironic kind of way, after making this I found my old Greatest Hits Vol. II CD. These days all my music is digital – I haven’t really used a CD in years. I had completely and totally forgotten that the cover of that album was done in a pop art style, so I was seriously dumbfounded when I stumbled across it and realized the artwork I made today reflected the CD cover I hadn’t seen in about 15 years.

So I just had to play around with more vector art after I saw it. Only this time I mimicked the album art on purpose.

Weird Al Popart Poster by Karissa Cole 2012

Although I’ll have to think of a better caption for this one, I think, I have to say, occupying myself with my vector tools and a blinding array of contrasting colors was sooo much fun. And I’m sure I’ll stop seeing spots any minute now.

Purploid Baby

Ever get the feeling you’re being watched? I guess most people have. This strange and often unexplainable sensation could creep up on you when you’re hard at work on a project; or deep in thought; or maybe just doing the laundry. But have you ever felt like, whatever the situation, all of a sudden and maybe out of nowhere a little pair of eyes are staring directly at the back of your head, willing you to turn around so that these same little eyes can stare just as intently into your soul and quite possibly take over your brain?

Ever get that particular feeling?

Personally, I have yet to experience this exact thing (and I am in no rush to). But according to a friend of mine it could happen to anyone. Of course if I’m being honest, I stopped taking him at his word when he said a race of highly intelligent fruit bats stole his pizza that one time at the laundromat.

I did actually almost start to believe his story (the one about the eyes staring into your soul and taking over your brain; not the bat thieves with a taste for pizza) though. Go ahead and call me crazy, but at the time, it was all I could think about.

I was sitting at my desk, right where I am now as a matter of fact, quietly wrapped up in reorganizing some files when I felt a chill skitter down my spine; I was being watched. I’ll admit, it was quite late at night and my sudden spike in paranoia – feeling like I was being observed – could very well have been attributed to a severe lack of sleep. And that’s what I would’ve done, too, in any other case; brush off the feeling and move on. But I did have that eyes-boring-into-your-head-and-soul story fresh in my mind, ridiculous though I thought it was.

But unlike most times when that feeling turns out to be nothing, this time it turned out to be something. I was actually, honestly, and truly being watched.

I don’t know where she came from or how she got here. But as soon as I knew there was a gaze turned on me for real, slowly, timidly even, I turned around in my chair and saw two dark purple eyes staring at me:

Purploid Baby

To my great surprise these eyes did not belong to a creepy stalker or a soul-sucking alien being, but instead to a Purploid Baby. You can imagine my relief. Purploids are far more desirable than creepy stalkers and soul-sucking aliens, I can’t even tell you.

I still really don’t know where this little one came from. But there she was just sitting on the edge of the desk contently staring at my file organization prowess. She’s been quite a wonderful house guest since that night, for she doesn’t take up much space and is happy to eat whatever she finds (she does seem to have a fondness for donuts, though – eating them, sleeping on them, whatever. She just like donuts).

The little Purploid comes and goes as she pleases. But thankfully she no longer stares at someone unannounced; she’s kind enough to make sure we know she’s in the room before she stares.

Has Boldly Gone

Indefinite Calm by Karissa Cole 2012

The Swan by Karissa Cole 2012

Another Moment in Time by Karissa Cole 2012

Unaware by Karissa Cole

Such a Quiet Catastrophe by Karissa Cole 2012

Nearer to Haven by Karissa Cole

A Praise Chorus by Karissa Cole

Just a few new uploads to toss into my ever increasing pile of celestial pieces.

Melvin the Misunderstood Monster – Free Pattern

Melvin the Misunderstood Monster by Karissa Cole (2012 all rights reserved)

Melvin the Misunderstood Monster [Free Pattern] by Karissa Cole

He’s a nice guy. Nicer than nice. He bakes cupcakes for everyone he knows, helps little old ladies cross the street, always says ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ and is never one to make a fuss. He never says no to someone in need, and always has a smile and a cheerful thought from the bottom of his big ‘ol heart. Why, he’d even balance your checkbook if you asked! (He’s really quite good with numbers.)

But even given all this, everyone still calls Melvin a monster. And for the life of him, he can’t figure out why. He’s cute, he’s little, he’s sweet. So where do they get monster in that?

Perhaps Melvin will never know. But in the meantime he keeps his positive disposition, taking comfort in fresh coloring books, caramel apples and watching the Olympics.

Here’s how to make your very own misunderstood monster:

S U G G E S T E D  M A T E R I A L S:

• Worsted weight yarn in two (2) colors such as:
* Red Heart Super Saver (1) Red  [Main color] (2) Gold [Secondary color]
• G/7 4.50MM crochet hook
• One (1) pair of 10MM safety eyes (available in many craft stores or online at http://www.crscrafts.com)
• White felt
• Scissors
• Needle & thread AND/OR Hot glue
• Fiberfill stuffing

A B B R E V I A T I O N S:

MC – magic circle (magic loop/magic ring)
sc – single crochet(s)
inc – increase
dec – decrease
st(s) – stitch(es)
ch – chain
*actions in asterisks should be repeated until round completion or to the indicated stopping point in the round*
(number in parentheses indicates total number of stitches after round/row completion)
FO – fasten off
RND – Round
RW – Row

T H E  P A T T E R N

Please read through pattern before you start. In addition, the PDF version of the pattern (available below) contains extra photos for the body and head sections of the pattern. And also please note that while you may use any materials you like, just keep in mind other types of yarn or hook sizes have not been tested and thus your results may differ. Using suggested materials and keeping a tight tension, the pictured Melvin is approximately 5 inches (12.7 centimeters) tall.

(Click here for PDF Download with photo walkthroughs for head and body)

(Direct PDF URL: https://ea1701.files.wordpress.com/2012/08/melvin-the-misunderstood-monster-by-karissa-cole2.pdf)

Use main color unless otherwise indicated. For neater stitches I recommend staggering increases and decreases for the head.

E A R S (x2)

Worked back and forth
ch 5 (5th ch counts as turning chain; at the end of all future rows ch 1 to use as turning chain)
RW 1-3) *sc* (4)
RW 4) sc, 2inc, sc (6)
RW 5) 2sc, 2inc, 2sc (8)
RW 6) 3sc, 2inc, 3sc (10)
RW 7-21) *sc* (10)
RW 22) 3sc, 2dec, 3sc (8)
RW 23) *sc* (8)
RW 24) 2sc, 2 dec, 2sc (6)
RW 25) sc, 2dec, sc (4)
RW 26) 2dec (2)
RW 27) dec (1)
FO

Using the finished ear as a reference cut out an inner ear shape from felt. Attach to ear. Crochet around outside of ear to form a neat edge.

Melvin the Misunderstood Monster by Karissa Cole 4

H O R N S (x2) Use secondary color

MC 3
RND 1) *inc* (6)
RND 2) *sc, inc* (9)
RND 3) *sc* (9)
FO

H E A D (x1)

The head is started with a foundation chain, then worked in the round.

Ch 6
Working in the back loops of the ch and starting in second ch from hook sc 5, ch 1, working along the other side of the 5 sc just made, sc 5, ch 1. You should now have 12 sts (see PDF for photo walkthrough)
From now on work in the round. Do not join rounds.
RND 1) *sc, inc*  (18)
RND 2) *2sc, inc* (24)
RND 3) *3sc, inc* (30)
RND 4) *4sc, inc* (36)
RND 5-9) *sc* (36)
RND 10) *5sc, inc* (42)
RND 11) *6sc, inc* (48)
RND 12) *7sc, inc* (54)
RND 13) *4sc, dec* (45)
RND 14) *3sc, dec* (36)
RND 15) *2sc, dec* (27)
Attach eyes, horns, and ears. See photos for suggested positioning.
RND 16) *sc, dec* (18)
Stuff firmly
RND 17) *dec* (9)
FO

A R M S (x2)

MC 3
RND 1) *inc* (6)
RND 2-4) *sc* (6)
FO

T A I  L (x1)

Create a pom-pom
Easy how-to: Wrap yarn of your choice around two of your fingers until you have a sizable bundle of yarn (be sure to wrap loose enough so as to not cut off circulation!). Cut yarn end. Remove wrapping of yarn from your fingers. Taking another piece of yarn (same color) tie a knot around the bundle. Cut off the edges (loops) or yarn until you have an almost pom-pom. Take a brush and brush out yarn until fluffy.  (See photos)

Melvin the Misunderstood Monster by Karissa Cole 5

B O D Y (x1)

The body and feet are worked as one piece, starting from the top (with a foundations chain that is joined once) and then worked down. Do not join rounds unless otherwise stated.

Ch 24, join and work in the round on 24 sts.
RND 1-3) *sc* (24)
RND 4) *5sc, inc* (28)
RND 5-6) *sc* (28)
RND 7) *6 sc, inc* (32)
RND 8-9) *sc* (32)
We will now start making the first leg by splitting our 32 sts into 2 sets of 16 stitches. Place a stitch marker at the beginning of the next round (I use the tail end of my piece)(note that this would be round 10 if we were continuing the body). Sc in the first 8 sts then, without breaking the yarn, skip all the way around to the first of the last 8 sts (see PDF for photo walkthrough)

RND 1-3) *sc* (16)
RND 4) *dec* (8)
RND 5) *dec* (4)
FO
Repeat these rounds for second leg by working the remaining 16 sts in the round (see PDF for photo walkthrough). Sew up hole between body/legs and at bottom of feet if necessary.

Cut out an egg shaped piece of felt and attach to the body. If attaching the tail via needle and thread, attach to the body now. If gluing the tail, I suggest first attaching the head to the body, then adding tail. See photos for suggested assemblage.

**Tip:If you want to soften up your Melvin try blocking the pieces; if your yarn type allows, I find running my crocheted pieces through the dryer with my laundry really softens up my amigurumi, evening out the stitches nicely. (I would recommend trying this on scraps to test first).

Melvin the Misunderstood Monster by Karissa Cole 3

Once complete, be sure to give your Melvin plenty of love! And crayons. Fresh crayons. They’re important too.

**P L E A S E  N O T E** This is an original design and pattern. I believe in the free sharing of techniques and ideas. Please do not abuse my desire to share with others. You are not permitted to sell any products made as the result of this pattern and/or design, nor are you permitted to sell the pattern or design. Please, if you do use this pattern or design, give credit where credit is due: direct others to this original posting so that they too can benefit.**

Not So Final

The Siren (WIP) by Karissa Cole 2012

The Shift by Karissa Cole

Waste (WIP) by Karissa Cole

Drowning Desire by Karissa Cole

Healing WIP by Karissa Cole

Even the Smallest Star by Karissa Cole

A Well-lit Nothing by Karissa Cole

I find it somewhat fascinating, how easily it seems my creative passion can be shifted so drastically in such a short period of time.

Two weeks ago my drive to create my digital pieces kept me up until all hours of the night. Last week I was pushing back the hours working with my own newest amigurumi patterns.

A few other scattered bits of life have been keeping me occupied too, so I haven’t much been on the computer (or behind a camera lens). But I wish to soon continue my digital interests. Sometimes I can feel the inspiration welling up, and just that one little push will send me into a creative spurt. . . Just not tonight. Besides, inspiration or no, I still feel as though my stuff is missing something so very important. In a word, I’d have to call it skill. I feel for sure it’s something I can muster, but perhaps I can’t. Don’t know.

Here, though, are a few of my latest celestial pieces. (My latest photographic and crochet things I’ve more or less uploaded already.)

More for my own benefit than anything else, my digital space stuff is really. These pieces in particular represent everything from my favorite recent work to abandoned works-in-progress to which I just have to say no. I’ll let you figure out which is which. (Although, the fact that some have already been put in  my dA gallery might be a clue. . .)

Pivot, the Good Gremlin – Free Pattern

Pivot (Free Pattern) by Karissa Cole

Pivot the Good Gremlin by Karissa Cole Free PDF Download

S U G G E S T E D  M A T E R I A L S:

• Worsted weight yarn in two (2) colors such as:
* Red Heart Super Saver (1) Thyme  [Main color] (2) Black [Secondary color]
• G/7 4.50MM crochet hook
• One (1) pair of 10MM saftey eyes (available in many craft stores or online at http://www.crscrafts.com)
• Black felt
• Scissors
• Needle & thread AND/OR Hot glue
• Fiberfill stuffing

A B B R E V I A T I O N S

M – magic circle (magic loop/magic ring)
CH – chain
IBL – in back loops
sc – single crochet(s)
inc – increase
dec – decrease
MC – Main color
CC – Secondary color
*actions in asterisks should be repeated until round completion or to the indicated stopping point in the round*
(number is parentheses indicate total number of stitches after round/row completion)
FO -fasten off

T H E  P A T T E R N

Use main color unless otherwise indicated

H E A D (x1)

M 6
RND 1) *inc* (12)
RND 2) *sc, inc* (18)
RND 3) *2sc, inc* (24)
RND 4) *3sc, inc* (30)
RND 5) *4sc, inc* (36)
RND 6) *8sc, inc* (40)
RND 7-11) *sc* (40)
RND 12) *8sc, dec* (36)
RND 13) *4sc, dec* (30)
RND 14) *3sc, dec* (24)
RND 15) *2sc, dec* (18)
RND 16) *sc, dec* (12)
FO

Using black felt cut out two-four triangles for ears. Place and attach with needle/thread or hot glue. Attach eyes. Stuff head.

Pivot (Side1) by Karissa Cole1

A R M S (x2)
CH 30
FO
Simply shape the first little gremlin finger by folding the chain onto itself and then either sew or glue in place. Repeat for the second finger.

F E E T (x2)

M 6
RND 1) *sc, inc* (9)
RND 2) *inc* (18)
RND 3) *sc, inc* (27)
RND 4) *IBL sc* (27)
RND 5-6) *sc* (27)
RND 7) dec x10 (10 decreases, over 20 stitches, successively), sc 7 (17)
RND 8) dec x5 (5 decreases, over 10 stitches, successively), sc7 (12)
RND 9-10) *sc* (12)
FO
B O D Y (x1)

M 6
RND 1) *sc, inc* (9)
RND 2) *inc* (18)
RND 3) *sc, inc* (27)
RND 4) *8sc, inc* (30)

The basic body pattern is divided up into thirds, with two thirds MC and one third CC. The standard color blocking goes like this:

RND 5-9) 10(sc)MC, 10(sc)CC, 10(sc)MC (30)
RND 10) 11(sc)MC, 8(sc)CC, 11(sc)CC
RND 11) 12(sc)MC, 6(sc)CC, 12(sc)CC
RND 12) 13(sc)MC, 4(sc)CC, 13(sc)CC
RND 13) (in MC from now on) *sc* (30)
RND 14) *sc, dec* (20)
RND 15-16) *sc* (20)
RND 17) *dec* (10)
RND 18) *sc* (10)
RND 19) *dec* (5)
FO

Pivot (Side2) by Karissa Cole2

Once complete attach arm and feet. See photos for suggested positioning. Stuff firmly. Attach head.

**P L E A S E  N O T E** This is an original design and pattern. I believe in the free sharing of techniques and ideas. Please do not abuse my desire to share with others. You are not permitted to sell any products made as the result of this pattern and/or design, nor are you permitted to sell the pattern or design. Please, if you do use this pattern or design, give credit where credit is due: direct others to this original posting so that they too can benefit.**

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