Tag Archives: organizing

Ponies in Their Places

I think I can finally say that all of my hobby stuff in unpacked, organized, and moved in. I’ve got bits and pieces all over the apartment…

In the hallway…

The ponies on their new wall shelf above the books, with my horse book collection starting off to the left and my other Horse Shaped Objects below.

In the bedroom…

WiP horses congregate on my dresser. A few more are packed up while I concentrate on their friends. Hopefully this very public set up will help keep me motivated and focused.

Supply shelving at the end of the bed.

In the closet…

Above my clothes, the closet shelf is 85% horse supplies.

and under the bed.

More extra supplies and my body box are under the bed in slide out plastic containers

Phew! It feels good to have that done. At this point we are mostly moved in. We still need to put up wall art, organize the camping supplies, and buy and add a few new things. But it’s getting there. I’m very happy to have a lovely space to work in the main room, on our beautiful kitchen island. We may also be getting a counter-height bar table that I could potentially also use.

And (hurrah!) our lovely little balcony… there’s definitely some more photo showing in my future.

It’s starting to feel like home.

Cheap Thrills: Hobby Storage

In anticipation of and excitement for our move to a new apartment this summer, I started a purging and reorganization of the studio this week. I was so excited I got up early to get to Goodwill for containers. And I was rewarded to be able to condense many of my disorganized boxes into this:

They’re even labeled!

I only wish I had a “before” picture to compare…this is MUCH more condensed, organized and practical!

As I’ve mentioned before, I love to find plastic containers to use for hobby things at Goodwill or similar thrift stores. If you shop often you can easily find what you need and at a fraction of the item’s price new.

My main goal with this reorganization was to divide my hobby stuff into activities, so that all of my pastelling tools were in one container, prepping and sculpting in another, etc. Before I had too many little boxes, and I’ve transferred to fewer, slightly larger and more orderly containers. I’m particularly happy with this find, which now holds my pastel and colored pencil supplies.

I added the horse to cover a bit of damage on the top of the box

I was lucky to find the perfect container. Handily, you can sometimes make a thrift store find into the perfect container- with a bit of creativity and work. I had been using a bead container (easily found at Goodwill for half off the new price) for my tack. The only problem was that the divisions in the box weren’t quite right, and I couldn’t fit in my sticky wax or my smaller container of micro mini tack (it has little tiny pockets, perfect for those ridiculous .5 inch saddles). So I took my dremel and a large file to it and made it better.

Perfect! There’s still room for plenty of tack and when I finally do run out of space I’ll be able to find a similar container on the cheap and if necessary, modify it to fit my needs.

My deep love for storage containers may be a little over the top, but it sure does keep things orderly around here- and wherever my craft area will be in the new place.

Organizing Your Reference Photos

Maybe I should have titled this post “Organizing My Reference Photos.” But what really matters for our purposes in the model horse hobby is that we have reference pictures and can find them when we need to use them… in whatever system works best for us. As of today my reference library contains 712 photos. To keep them organized, I use iPhoto, a standard program which came with my Mac computer.

I am one of those people who is neurotically organized, so it’s important to me to have my reference photos carefully catalogued by factors such as color, breed, or position so that I can always find exactly what I’m looking for. And I like to be able to put photos in multiple albums (for example, under palomino, dapples, and trotting), and have albums within albums (for example Appaloosa –> Leopard). I like iPhoto because it allows this level of organization and because since I do not use it to organize my other photos (vacations, my cats, etc.) it can be devoted to reference photos.

At right is a screenshot from iPhoto, showing my folders and albums. Besides the obvious divisions I have the “In Use” folder with albums for each one of the customs I’m currently working on- with all the reference photos that are relevant to that work. That way I’m always organized when switching from horse to horse.

Today I was working on what I call my “Hairy Pony Project,” which is my mission to customize a G3 Standing Pony into a shaggy Shetland. Right now he has much shortened legs, chopped hindquarters, and an elongated belly, all of which leave him looking rather strange. One of the fun parts about this project is that looking for references is what experts call a “Squee Fest” where everything is adorable and must be saved for further viewing. So within my “In Use” folder is my “Hairy Pony Project” album, full of wee shaggy beasts:

Then within the folder I can easily find the picture that works best for my current needs and see it in its full glory:

And it works similarly when I am looking for things such as pangare shading, a horse’s shoulder muscle when rearing, proper breed type, teeth detail, etc. I love how easy this system makes finding and using my many reference pictures. And although I do also use many photos from books, the ease of finding and organizing pictures on the computer is invaluable.

And so my advice for reference pictures is: have many of them, and keep them easily within your grasp. Your plastic ponies will thank you.