Wednesday, May 17, 2017

So long, Etsy! It was fun, while it lasted. :(

Etsy will soon be suspending my account because I don't wish to give them my bank account number and other sensitive personal info which they now require from me to set up their proprietary checkout system. I had always assumed the fees I pay for listing each item was enough revenue for them to stay afloat. This is why I loved Etsy and hate Ebay. Now, it seems, they are no better than Ebay.

Sorry, but I have no reason to trust Etsy with that info or any website that has no business knowing it and they don't have the credentials to guarantee their ability to keep that information safe and secure. Enough of my personal info is already all over the internet without my help so I find them forcing sellers to hand over this info distasteful and wrong.

So what happens now? Of course I will always continue to sell direct on my own online store, which is the preferred way since there are no listing fees since the shop is my own (only PayPal keeps a portion) so it's the best way for customers to support my hard work. I will, on rare occasions, post something on Ebay (yes they charge fees, but they're not asking for more info they don't already have on me). In the meantime, I've given my Esty store a much needed makeover...

And yes, I plastered the same message on the default pics of my items. They're gonna suspend me anyway I figured why not just go out with a bang?

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Production Update

Just a quick update on the progress of some waiting-list items. Still casting as I type this but will transform the work bench from a casting area to a sanding/cleaning/touch-up area to get the raw castings into workable shape for painting. Of the items in the works are the Medallion Display Stands, Idol Artifact Pedestals, mini Cthulhu idols, Siva Linga stones, and some Cthulhu wall reliefs.

Medallion Display Stand. Click HERE for info. The mold for this item is seriously on its last legs. Will need to make a new one and perhaps rethink how it's made for easier demolding.

Mini Cthulhu Idol in its mold. 

Final castings. Click HERE for more info.

The ol' drying rack. Here are a few primed Cthulhu Wall Reliefs ready for some paint. Click HERE for more info.

Other items on the rack. A couple of freshly pulled Idol Artifact Pedestals (a few more are in the work area being worked on), and some extra Twin Serpent reliefs. When casting I always like to have small molds standing by incase I have excess material, in which case I'd pour it into the molds and reduce waste.

What in the world is this strange contraption?! This oddity here is the Idol Artifact Pedestal mold. Those wooden "stilts" are attached to a weighted top (a prototype pedestal as a matter of fact... remember what I said about not letting anything go to waste?) which holds down a carefully-sized and cut piece of rigid foam which becomes the center core of the casting.

A pink pedestal? Have I gone mad? Well, maybe a little. What you are seeing here is the actual foam core that goes into every pedestal. The little white knobs represent the thickness of the top layer of a completed pedestal. They basically function as feet which elevates the foam about 1/4 inch from the surface of the mold, leaving space for the material to fill to achieve an even thickness throughout. The three holes in the middle are to allow for the casting material to slush through when it is pressed down into the mold and also to give it extra strength once solidified. 

This results in a far lighter casting, while at the same time, retaining much of its structural strength. This is how I've been making these from the beginning and it's worked beautifully so far. So I let y'all in on a little behind-the-scenes magic. Free of charge. ;)

And yes... more Siva Linga Stones.