Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Lightbox Construction

I venture into photographers' territory in this post to discuss the topic of the lightbox, which is a necessary and much used tool. These days anyone who posts multiple auction listings online or works on website construction in which good clear quality images are important knows the lightbox well. Most online tutorials on building one at home involve PVC pipe, white fabric, clip on lamps, and various colored solid fabrics for backdrops. The light is filtered by the white fabric and results in no shadow being cast.
I have been making adjustments to the lightbox that I put together this week, and realized that I did good in buying all the right pieces and just enough PVC pipe...waste not, want not. To give proper credit where credit is due I must direct readers to Bill Huber's site (http://www.pbase.com/wlhuber/light_box_light_tent)which had, after browsing several different construction layouts on other sites, the most "user-friendly." My only adjustments to these instructions were that I did not install any screws or use any glue. The pipe lengths fit snugly enough into the joint parts, and I will be able to collapse and fold my lightbox frame so that I can hang it from the ceiling when it's not in use.

Pictured below is one of a line of cone incense burners that will be sold on our site, measuring approximately 4 inches in height and 5 inches across. I had to make an adjustment to the backkdrop, but the photo comes out quite well with the three clip-on lamps on the outside of the frame and no flash on the camera.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Connect with me...

Here's a quick announcement just to put the word out to please connect with me on Twitter @dkahauolopua, full website coming soon, more info as we get closer to launch date. I definitely would love to connect and network with other likeminded creative types of people that love to put their hands to use! One of my mottos is "...Making Something Out Of Nothing." If you agree with this perspective, let me know!

Friday, April 24, 2009

The Crane...

As I continue on this bumpy journey, I realize that i must push myself a bit harder to be consistent with blog posts. I made a verbal commitment to strive to reach my goal of one post a day, setting a small block of time to share a few thoughts. It has been two days since I caved in and FINALLY joined the facebook bandwagon, and I am wondering what I have unleashed. The bottom line is though that I am interested in reconnecting with old friends as well as making new ones, and as well as putting the talents I have out there for others to respond and react to. As I browsed my portfolio photos as well as those others that served to inspire, I came across this photo of a hat/headpiece someone created for a runway show. I loved the boldness of the design and color, but it also reminded me so much of life growing up in Hawai'i and learning how to fold the origami crane. As a young man I was asked to create a centerpiece for a family friend's wedding. I found a quite large piece of a tree that had unusually formed branches I just knew would work for what I had in mind, and I stuck the dried up tree in a large bucket of beach rocks and to it attached 1,001 red cranes that I had folded myself...somewhere there is a pic. Then, in 2004, between my sister and myself we designed a centerpiece for our annual Thanksgiving weekend party. She folded 2,004 gold origami cranes, sent them to me, and I created the dragon below. I mounted 2,000 cranes on red velvet in the shape of a dragon and the star is made with the final 4. WOW.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Beef Wellington...

I must first admit that to date I have attempted Beef Wellington ONCE so far. My friends Marshall and Dany had been dropping those two very words, as if it were some sort of forbidden fruit, an alluring yet unattainable creation. Then two New Years ago, my partner Keith and myself visited Marshall where he was living in Palm Springs at the time, and I had planted in my mind in advance that this was to be the weekend that I tackle the elusive Wellington. In a nutshell, buying the filet mignon for 6 people does not make for a cheap date! Not until I was almost out of time did I realize that the pastry dough needed to be re-chilled for a bit after wrapping the filet. It still turned out tasty, I incorporated a country style pate from Trader Joe's instead of the foie gras suggested to me by the Two Fat Ladies, but because I did not chill the dough before baking the crust it ballooned rather than staying compact. Oh well, first attempt over. Then, a revelation: a true and authentic approach to Beef Wellington presented to the world by chef Gordon Ramsay, incorporating English mustard, and an almost paste made from mushrooms. So easy you will not believe, and as soon as I make it myself I will most certainly report back with the results!