What You See Is What You Get. This is a journal blog, an explore-blog, a bit of this and that blog. Sharing where the mood takes me. Perhaps it will take you too.

MenoSunday; Live a bit Differently

...there will be music... a little patience requested...

Today holds some specialness. Not because it is my birthday (had far too many of those to think of it as special), but because it is the deadline day I set myself a month ago. You've seen hints on other posts and then all the past week you've been asked whether you had heard...

It is because of this specialness (and a little bit because it is my birthday) that the indulgence of a written post here is being taken.

For those who may need to catch up a bit, the YAMster returned to Scotland after a quarter century, having travelled a 'forest road'. After 16 months, settling in is still sort of happening. One of the aims was to focus on spiritual practice and further research on Vedanta; then also to engender outreach, given that this was a key purpose of attending the ashram. This is being achieved through the Aatmaavrajanam blog. Another aim, mentioned here before, to focus more on creative writing. It is under way, but of course is a long-term project.

Another passion, it will not have escaped your notice, is photography. What may not necessarily have been apparent, though, is that there is a small talent with other artistic media also. Acrylic paints and pastels are favourites. In OZ, the walls of my home were covered with my works. Here in Dunoon, however, there is not the space to set up for such endeavour, neither is it necessarily appropriate now.

That does not help when the artistic urge still looms large!!! It demands to be let loose. One of the things to have helped release that pressure has been playing around with imaging software on my photographs.

Now here's the thing; amongst all of this it has to be mentioned that, currently, the YAMster has absolutely no source of income. The production of anything commercial in writing is a fair way off. What to do?  To be honest, this has not been a completely major concern - but neither can one go on living off savings. Life is frugal round here. Minimal requirement. Bills do arrive though, and food does require to be bought. Over the years and more particularly recently, there have been voices saying how my photography would sell... blay blah yaddayad..... I have been enjoying making the pretty pictures for myself. Then I happened upon a blog where the owner also advertised her work for sale on things like cushions and wall art.... light bulb moment.

This was literally a month ago. Till then, knowing that others have 'shops' did not particularly interest me. I am not a shopper, y'see. Oh yes now and then, a particular piece (like recent art purchases) or for things which are functional and will not just be put on the shelf. If I don't buy why would I bother? However, I followed her link and whilst that stuff was not at all my taste, it meant that I discovered RedBubble.

Seems many others had before me, but like I said. I don't shop. However, I do eat and consume power, so a fire was lit. The voices saying my stuff was commercial (sale of some of those works in OZ prompt some belief this may be the case) combined with recent 'creations' and then a comment from another blogpal, wondering why I wasn't 'getting my act sorted' - in short, due to a culmination of events - the decision was taken to try this out. .... if you are getting bored by this time, by all means just drop down to the video right now.  The rest of this is about process....what??? You were warned of indulgence!

Apart from anything else, this gal holds a healthy dose of the sceptic in her make-up. Having 'live' commercial experience, there are no delusions about making  my own mint here. Selling is slog (just ask Joanne! - go on click over there when you're done here...I cannot recommend her teatowels highly enough!) However, one thing is sure; nothing will sell if it is kept 'in the cupboard'.

I researched the site, right down to the last "." on the contracts page; a good gander at other artists in there; a hunt around at other similar sites; then a comparison of praises and criticisms; then a comparison of costs versus service; you know...  Homework.

One of the prompts to get this going is to provide visual aids for practical meditation. The fact that one can decorate one's home or carry a piece of original artwork is something of a bonus. There may be other sites from which one might make a few more $$$ but they do not necessarily provide the same service or quality of goods. This was the interesting thing. Whilst RB is promoted as a platform for artists to sell their work, what is really happening is they are a department store who make goods, source, print, pack and post and for all that they get the lion's share of the money. What it boils down to is that the artist gets a percentage. A commission, if you will. You know what? That's fine. As long as the blinkers are off and it is understood that one might only make enough for one meal out at Usha's per year. Yup. The price you see and may opt to pay holds a mere few pennies for the artist. More of course, if the fine art stuff sells. On the homewares and deco stuff, very little margin.

A meal is a meal though. The other hurdle to be overcome was a prejudice I have about things such as PayPal. Had to open an account. RB (and other suchlikes) only pay through that - or send cheque, deducting costs. To be fair, I could have chosen to have funds paid directly into my OZ bank, but that wouldn't buy my meal here...

In opening that account on the 15th inst (yes a mere 11 days ago - it feels like 87) the RB account was also initiated. Just for fun that evening, I thought to put up a couple of the works and thus find out the process ...........................................!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!... O M G...........................................

By last weekend I had pulled three all-nighters and continuous days and of course, the body rebelled. Raging neuralgia such as has not been experienced for some five years. You see, what they don't tell you about is that the process is going to take, on average, 15 minutes per item. Firstly, the images need to be full pixel quality, so the uploads are anything from 2 - 6 or more minutes. Once on the page, decisions need to be made as to whether the image is suitable for all products, or does one wish to limit the product availability? Then there are descriptions and tags and display options...... if you choose to take a gander, you will note that I have no small number of works loaded up. It was a drudge... I gave myself three days to recuperate from the neuralgia (it was that bad) and catch up on sleep, then set to it again last Wednesday. Not so intensely this time. Only pulled one all-nighter since then. Waaayyyyy more work than was appreciated when embarking upon this venture. However, now that the basics are done, it's all about spreading the word. Whilst the account has been live since the 15th, today is my 'launch' day. Well. It is my birthday after all.

ॐ YAM-yum
For full explanation of OM, read the AV blog (AUM-day label). Suffice to say it is the symbol of creation itself. Y, A, M, are of course my initials. More than that however, याम् /yaam in Sanskrit holds a number of meanings, not least of which include 'path, completion, to strive, working through darkness'... (that last one gives clues to as to my name 'Yamini' (यामिनी /yaa-min-ee), it is associated with night and guess what? I was born at night AND as you noticed above, tend to travel through the night when waxing creative!) यम् /yum in Sanskrit relates to uparati, withdrawal of the senses in order to focus on spiritual needs; to establish a sound practice and to surrender to that process. It also implies support and succour. Further, the symbol यं (yum) relates to the heart chakra, the very centre of Love with the capital 'ell'.

By itself, then, this logo becomes a mantra for peace, creativity, remaining steady on one's path and accepting what support is available.

Primarily the items offered at RedBubble are focused on cushions ('throw pillows'), totes and fine art prints/greetings cards. Some items are available also as covers ('skins'... honestly I despair at the terminology, but have no control over that!) for various equipment.

You are not expected to all rush over and start spending your hard-earned... it would be nice if you would peek there now and then though. If something takes your fancy all good and well.

If you wouldn't mind passing the link to others, it would be much appreciated. Some of you here for whom I have email addresses and/or G+ circles, will be getting other alerts today. The gal has to promote!!! Each will have basic info and links to the shop, so if you are able to forward/repost accordingly, that would also be appreciated. I am aware that many of you go walkies on all sorts of other 'media', which is fine; my only request is that you do not 'stick pins in'; pretty please. I, on the other paw, work only within the Google framework.This is a conscious choice. Bit like the vego thing.

On a final note, the other promo online that I am using is the tubular channel. Which brings me to today's musical offering. A public domain peace which fitted the bill perfectly....

There you go. Indulgence over.
Thanks for being here to read this final line!

YAM xx


  1. Wow, happy happy barkday to you, my good furiend! Congrats on your special day and I hope it is filled with joy and love. I liked reading more about your name. :)
    Grr and Woof,
    Sarge, Police Commish

    1. Hari OM
      rraaallff ggrrrmmm rroooofffff to you too Sarge! Yxx

  2. Wishing you a very Happy Birthday! Your items at Redbubble are gorgeous! Good luck on your shop.

    1. Hari OM
      Ohhh did you go already? Why thank you!!! Yxx

  3. Yes, I've been there, too. I wish you so much success! And, happy birthday. And, just keep doing it.

  4. And then I posted RB on my Facebook page. That's about the extend of my media ability.

  5. That is a great video! We could get lost in all the patterns. And of course we are barking Happy Birfday at you this very minute!

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  6. Wishing you a wonderful day! Thanks for the suggestion to use Google Plus when I can't comment!

  7. Happy birthday! Good luck with your new adventure.

  8. Happy Birthday, looking forward to browsing around your "shop" 😀

  9. Happy Birthday, best of luck with the new shop!
    Mr Bailey, Hazel & Mabel

  10. Love the website. Browsing done. Yes I agree you have never been a shopper, Maybe except in India. Me on the other hand, No not a shopper now. Having said that I love the tote bags and I think they will make lovely Birthday gifts, with the Yam touch that I could promote here in OZ. So will order some soon. Promise. Speaking of Birthdays I think this is my 3rd wish this year, But here it is Wishing you all the very best and May Goddess Lakshmi shower her blessings on you. Love and Light

    1. Hari OM
      Nature's choice is the triad. So wishes gladly accepted!!! Yes the bags are brill - and I like the different sizes. .... but I am going to have to be very restrained not to buy up on scarves. ...8~}... it would be rather self-defeating! Yxx

  11. Happy Birthday and CONGRATULATIONS that you found such a super way to get some green or red papers for your creativity!!! I always talk about that topic but by now I still miss "the right" idea :o)
    easy rider

  12. Belated Happy Birthday. And wishing you every success with the new venture. You have so many talents and much energy and drive, so the key ingredients are in place.
    PS Hope the neuralgia is kept at bay.

    1. ...oh yes thank you - that break in the middle did the trick. The temperature is plummeting here.... did you get the snow today??? Yxx

  13. Happy birthday my dear! Great day to launch your new venture. Many happy returns and best wishes for a great year ahead. Love, Sue & Norman xxx

  14. Sending much love and all good wishes (belatedly) for your birthday. Had been busy weekend so not on here over weekend. (That's my excuse for being late).
    There was so much to take in in this post of yours but take it in I think I did and I wish you all the best in this latest venture and hope it all works out well.
    I myself have a PayPal account but only for making payments. I had an idea if you had the account to receive money they charge you a fee but I may be wrong.
    So sorry to hear about the neuralgia. My mum suffered from neuralgia at one time and thinking back, I feel it may have been THAT time in her adult life as I don't remember it bothering her as she aged beyond about 55.
    ....and yes, I was still here to read that final line. xx

    1. Hari Om
      Thank you Mimsie - it was a bit of a marathon today.... but the whole business has been a marathon! Have already made a sale though, so that lifts the spirit. yes the Neuralgia only came upon me with the the 'menopolyxinaemia' (you'll gather by now I don't take it seriously despite its very serious effects!) and as am now officially past the number you mention as of today, let's hope that was the very last episode!!! It had been some time so never thought it would turn up again.

      As to the PP a/c you are correct there is a small fee if they transfer the money into your bank account - not if you hold it with them. It is not out of order though and would certainly have been cheaper than the charge the company would make for sending out a cheque. My prejudice was that it was really only ever a facility for those working on Ebay but as with lots of other things, this is no longer the case and actually I am sure it will prove handy in many other ways. Typically Taurean, I have much caution when it comes to changing in the important things of life!!! Yxx

    2. You are a real Trojan (remind me somewhat of my mum) and it is wonderful you've made a sale already. Ever onward!!
      Seems what I mentioned re mum and neuralgia may in fact be correct. Let's hope that bout will be your last. Obviously the stress of the long days brought it on.
      I used PayPal for eBay when I was buying and selling things and now I find it useful for paying for internet purchases, at least from those who don't charge if you use it. It seems extra safe, that is if anything is truly safe these days.
      I think I am a wee bit like yourself being somewhat cautious about changes but I am a Capricorn so not sure what that means. LOL
      Once again, all the best with your new venture. xx

  15. Happy Burfday Aunty Yam, yous Mummy's twin!!!!
    Loves and licky kisses
    Princess Leah xxx

  16. Happy belated! So sorry I didn't check in on the day itself. Was too busy doing absolutely nothing.

    I admire you for staying so focussed to get it completed on your deadline! I will go over and have a look. And you never know: Miss Oswin might take a fancy to a throwpillow or two...


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