Sunday, March 30, 2008

Earth Hour

I am proud to say we participated! Did you?

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter

I hope you all have a blessed and joyful day spent with family and friends and lots of chocolate bunnies!

Saturday, March 22, 2008


I was tagged to answer some here we go! =)

4 jobs I've had: I have had so many jobs it's not even funny, but 4 interesting ones are...I worked for Boeing on the Peacekeepers, I've done singing telegrams which is amazing because I can't sing at all, I did commercials for MTV, and...I played bass in a rock band.

4 favorite movies: First Knight, Where The Heart Is (The one with Uma Thurman and Dabney Coleman, not the Susan Serandon one) Twister and Bull Durham! Also I love old black and white movies and those big production musicals.

4 places I've been: Everywhere and back again.

4 places I've lived: I have moved 187 times in my life...pick a place, I've probably lived there.

4 favorite tv shows: Psych, Ghost Hunters & Destination Truth, Lipstick Jungle and Rules Of Engagement.

4 favorite radio programs: They still have radio?

4 favorite foods: Pasta, coffee, pasta, coffee, pasta, coffee...oh.

4 places I'd rather be: Sleeping, the 1980's, on a tropical island in a pink palace by the sea, or Sri Lanka, Tibet, Italy and France! (that would be one trip, so I am countin that as one.)

I am constantly in motion, going places and doing new's probably from all the carbs and caffeine of the pasta and coffee!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

~*~ Awdly Mei ~*~

Awdly decided to take a turn on ebay:

Click here to visit him!

The Beat Goes On

You know how you get that song stuck in your head sometimes? It just plays over and over. Sometimes I get other things stuck in my head too. For about 4 months or so I have had three things stuck there...Alice In Wonderland, birds nests with robin eggs, and very pristine white seashells. I almost want to tie it all together somehow. I don't even know how or why.

If you step back and look at things there is usually a rythym of sorts to them. I mean think about it; Alice wore a blue dress and a white pinafore, and fell down a rabbit hole. Her dress was robin's egg blue, the pinafore was pristine seashell white, and a rabbit hole is birds nest brown and twiggish. (Twiggish is a word now in case you're curious.)

It all must mean something in the bigger tempo of our lives to get these things stuck in our head. I hope whatever it means presents itself and comes together soon. If it does, I will let you all know right away!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Top O' The Mornin!

Happy St. Patty's all! This week has been CRAZY! So I haven't had much chance to post. This week should settle down, and I will be back to normal. That being said, I am going to keep this short and sweet today. In the mean time may the luck of the Irish be yours!

Being a blonde haired, green eyed Irish lass named Kelly, I couldn't let the day pass without a good old fashioned Irish blessing;

"May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
The rains fall soft upon your fields,
And until we meet again,
May God hold you
In the palm of his hand."

Thursday, March 13, 2008


I managed to do an etsy shop. Etsy fascinates me so. There are so many people making really wonderful things out there!

In other news my Moms test results came back pretty good, no cancer thankfully! And R made it to Germany ok.

I am so tired I can't even see, so I will post more later. If you want to peek at my etsy shop click below:


Monday, March 10, 2008

The Pages Of The Book

We live in a world where physical beauty matters so much. But it's a world where all too often we miss out on something amazing if we judge the proverbial book by it's cover and never find out what's inside. I was strollin along today lookin at YouTube and came across this. I am not even sure why I clicked on it. I don't watch those American Idol type shows, and I rarely even look at YouTube...but this is so worth seeing! This guy is AMAZING! But many people would probably pass him by thinking he is an ordinary, unassuming schlubb, and never know what he was capable of. The next time you pass something or someone by because they don't appeal to you, think about this and what you might miss out on!

Apparently he went on to win, and was a real "Cinderella" story! Isn't that fabulous!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

A New Look

I spent all night...and I do mean ALL night redoing my website! I think it turned out pretty. I still need to flesh out my profile page a little, and redo the frames on the archives, but other than's ready to go. If you would like to have a peek you can click below:


Friday, March 7, 2008

When It Rains...

My mother has always said all things come in three's. My mother is right. I was going to try to only make really happy posts about work and stuff, but this is my place to get things out of my system, and today has been the triple crown of bad days! There was no runnin for the roses though!

I started the day off worried over my mother in fact since she had to go have a CAT scan because they think she might have cancer. Then R called and told me he found out today he has to go back to Germany on Tuesday...nothin like REALLY short notice. I will naturally worry myself sick til he lands safely and returns safely.

Then as if that wasn't enough, I went to put in gas and my card was declined! I was shocked, that has never happened. So I had to go to the office to find out what happened. Apparently some enterprising little darlings with a theft ring had stolen my number and it was locked due to an FBI investigation. So I had to go through all the junk and prove I am who I say I am and all that. You would think with proper ID that wouldn't be hard. The trouble is that when you have been run through Interpol as a suspected Irish terrorist, they look at you a little harder since you're in the system. Now of course I was never a terrorist, but we were mistaken as that on the flight back from a bear show in Japan once, and held up at customs. (It's a long story.) But once you're flagged in the system, you're flagged for good I guess.

So if anyone out there is reading this...I could use some positive energy aimed my way. I would really appreciate it, it's been kind of a rough few weeks and I am not asking for me, I am asking for my mother and R.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

~*~ Awdly Mei ~*~

I made a really fun little bear today. I had a hard time photographing him though, his colors are so diverse that it took me 3 tries and it still doesn't come close to doing him justice. He is going on my website. I like him so much he will be hard to let go of.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

A Peek Inside

I guess people like to see where the magic happens! So I am sharing some pics of my studio. I fresco painted the walls because I wanted to create a warm friendly light in the space. It took me 3 months to do it! Good thing I don't take quite that long to make a bear...well sometimes it takes that long to get them done! *Laughs* Please note the periwinkle door!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008


I was discussing blogs with somebody, and she said to me today that collectors might not always understand our point of view so she is cautious about what she says in public. Hmm. I really gave that a lot of thought this afternoon. That one phrase brought up quite a few questions for me.

The first one is, what exactly is a blog and it's purpose? When I started mine last August I looked upon it in the respect of it being my personal diary to post whatever I chose to. It never occurred to me anyone would even read it very seriously. While I don't get a lot of public comments, I get insane amounts of e-mail with people sharing similar stories or just adding their two cents to whatever I have posted. I am shocked every time I find out someone is reading it. So what exactly is it? Is it mine to do with as I see fit, or do I have some sort of obligation to my readers? It's not like I am writing a column in the paper.

The next thing it made me ask was if my collectors are reading my blog, what do they hope to get from reading it? Do they want to know me? Do they want to know why I make what I make? Are they interested in my day to day life, or do they just want to see what makes me tick? Do they read it just to see what I currently have for sale? Does reading it enhance what they purchased from me? Does what they read affect whether they want to buy my work or not? That last question bothered me so much that in an uncharacteristic fit terror I deleted over half my posts because I have occasionally used my blog to exorcise things from my brain that were bothering me. I was afraid someone might judge me too harshly and not want a bear because they didn't understand how or why I said what I did. I kinda regret doing it now that I put it into perspective, but what's done is done. Maybe blogging is like making your first bear, you won't get it right the first time.

If collectors are basing any aspect of their purchases on what we write, then the next question is what do collectors expect artists to be? We are notoriously moody and eccentric. Beauty is born out of pain and most artists have had some sort of pain in their lives at some point, it's what drives us to want to make the world a more attractive place. But do people read our blogs because they want to know the truth about us, or do they want to hold us up as ideals of something? I really don't know because for most of my career I sold to people face to face at shows and signings. Things went really well in those days because there wasn't the misinterpretation of the meaning of our words that runs rampant on the internet. People liked me when they met me I guess. If people are basing their purchases soley on who we are, then that would seem a little odd when you consider that our houses are FILLED with things designed and created by people we have no concept of. Even if we did know about them, would it stop us from buying the paper towels with the flowers, or the cashmere sweater, or our sofa because the artist who designed them had a gambling problem or cheated on their spouse or said something nasty in public once?

So then the next question is, what do collectors think teddy bear artists are? I am a real person the same as anyone else. I would love to tell you that I am like Glinda, the good witch and travel around in a shiny bubble with a pink sparkly dress and a glittery wand passing out pretty shoes and ways to find their route home to wayward folks, but it doesn't work that way. If Glinda had her own blog, what would she have written? (By the way just a lil piece of trivia...Billie Burke was 53 when she played Glinda in the movie. Isn't that just fabulous, she looked amazing!)

One person said that we have a responsibility to use the proper netiquette. I guess that sounds like a nice idea, and maybe I should try harder to stick to that. But who decides what's proper? If we hold too tightly onto being PC on the PC do we squash our own creative thought flow? Maybe we don't always understand each other's point of view, but maybe that's what makes us think.

I really hope people don't judge us too harshly as artists over what we write or what we don't write. In turn, I am sure our collectors wouldn't want to be judged so harshly by the artists they love. Collectors and artists are all delightfully 3 dimensional people who have good days and bad days, and things that make us happy, hurt, anxious, sad, excited and angry. As artists we have unique perspectives on the world and all too often our online words get misinterpreted because of the very nature of those perspectives. If you aren't sure you agree with what you are reading, just remember at our core we are still all nice people. If we weren't we couldn't make something as delightful as teddy bears now could we! Besides Glinda might have been a witch, but she still full of sparkly, shiny, glittery goodness!

Monday, March 3, 2008

~*~ Dichotomy Bracelet ~*~

And last but not least...I put the Dichotomy Bracelet on ebay. Click below to visit it:

Click here!

~*~ Wooden Mermaid Box ~*~

I also decided to put the wooden mermaid box on ebay. Click below to visit it:
Click here!

~*~ Ester & Tweet ~*~

I decided to put Ester & Tweet on ebay. Click the link below to visit them:
Click here!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Drawing The Line

Teddy bears got their name because they happened to debut at a time when Teddy Roosevelt drew the line over something he considered unethical. Clifford Berryman decided to do a political cartoon about it and the rest as they say, is history. Unfortunately not everyone has the same code of ethics Teddy Roosevelt had.

A couple nights ago I was strolling down a virtual avenue looking for something and came across something else entirely. You know how that is right? It's times like that when we see synchronicity at play yet again. So anyway, I had run across some bears made by an artist that has a VERY unique and charming style. But I was puzzled over why she was selling in a particular venue that I wouldn't think she would be interested in using. AND I wondered why she had slightly changed the name of her company...until I realized...she hadn't!

Someone had copied her work all the way from the pattern down to costuming, picture style and name of her company! The kicker is this person had gone on to extol about how it had taken them a really long time to develop this style! I nearly choked. Now I know they say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, but if that's true...why aren't we ever flattered when someone does it to us? That can sometimes be a cultural reaction I guess. In America we value uniqueness and originality. In some countries it's not only acceptable, but valued and respected to copy each others work in an attempt to keep that style alive.

This has been an issue in the bear world for as long as I can remember. I spent a lot of time thinking about it yesterday while I was pulling weeds in my garden. I've been part of this business long enough to see that sometimes people can come to the same place at the same time with a similar style that has nothing to do with each other. Often what we make has a lot to do with what's popular in society at any given time. We don't even realize it's what influences us.

I remember years ago a lot of people suddenly making mermaid bears, myself included. They were all different, but the person who managed to get her mermaid bear in print first accused everyone else of copying her. Of course that wasn't true because when I made mine I hadn't even seen hers yet. I realized the thing that had influenced us all was the release of Disney's movie; "The Little Mermaid." I loved that movie and I didn't even realize it had inserted itself in my brain so deeply that I had to translate my love for it into my work. Right now the popular things are altered art and cute Japanese chibi style. We are seeing a lot of that creeping into the work of bear artists. I've been wanting to try my own hand at a little of that.

The other thing that influences artists of any kind, are each other. Someone will create a fun technique and so many people want to apply it to their own work that it gets lost as to who originally came up with it. Other times we simply have similar personalities and end up making the same type of look because of it. I have seen features of people's work that I admired, translated my own way and incorporated it into my work. But there is the trick. Where do we draw the line from inspiration into remastering? Some people in other areas of the art world consider remastering it's own art. In a way it is, I couldn't recreate the Mona Lisa and if someone can, that is pretty amazing!

If you really think about it there are only so many ways to make a bear. We all are in fact plagiarizing the idea of Margaret Steiff. Most artists start out copying a bear style from a time period, manufacturer or pattern book/class from an artist and then we work out our own from there. I have been wanting to make a 50's style rabbit this week and have been working on a pattern for it. Right now I can think of 5 other artists who are doing the same, and they were all influenced by a manufactured original half a century ago. My motive for wanting it is a love of vintage style and some cute little Easter boxes I came across that I felt that type of bunny would be perfect for. I am drawing my own pattern from scratch to do so, but will it look like another artist or manufacturer when I am done? Probably, to a degree. I have made thousands of bears over the years in that classic german style and shape, then I add my own twist. But did I sit down and measure out and copy one bear in particular in order to re-create that exact bear? No! As time progresses I like to change things up, so I shorten or lengthen snouts, limbs and ears, but ultimately I was still influenced by the work of others and what is going on around me in society. The question remains, is that wrong? I think sometimes it's a matter of giving credit where credit is due. I will gladly step up and tell you what my influences are and not claim something as my own original concept if it's not. Art is subjective, so are the answers to what constitutes artistic influence versus a knock off. Everyone is going to have a different answer.

I would be lying if I said I had never been tempted to re-create someone's bear because I wanted one from them and either couldn't afford one or they didn't make enough for me to manage to get one. I think many of us are tempted to do that at some point whether we own up to it or not. I can assure you however, that when push comes to shove, I have never done it. I end up just waiting and getting one from the person who designed it or I let it go because I know that mine will never be like theirs anyway. But when you do make an exact replica and claim it as your own, as in the case of what I found the other night...that's where I draw the line.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

~*~ Big Website Update ~*~

I updated the Sticks and Stones, and Whimsy's sections of my website tonight with quite a few things. Including the two mermaid boxes, three bracelets and a really fancy Easter bear! If you would like to see, click below:
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Current copyright laws allow for all work to be automatically protected when it is created. All original artwork, photos, text, logo, descriptions, and derivative works from Blondheart are not to be copied, imitated or distributed in any way. All rights reserved solely by the artist, Kelly Dauterman.

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