Sunday, March 31, 2013

Somewhere There Are Dogwood Blooming

Over at Hels Sheridan's Sunday Stampers the call is for a something honoring Mother Nature...I bought this stamp last spring and then with all the moving and building and whatnot never got a chance to play with it. I grew up outside of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, near Valley Forge Park. Each spring the hills of the park would burst into bloom with white and pink dogwood really was stupendous. People would come from miles and miles to see it, and it was practically outside our back door. They are such a sturdy, yet delicate flower.  So I made up a little card to send to my sister.

I stamped on a 2.5 x 2.5 piece of watercolor paper, embossed with clear embossing powder  and then used a water brush and some soluble markers. I swear it makes it so easy to look like you can paint. I love that!

I stamped the same image, embossed it again on a manilla tag and then popped the square image on top. In the picture the paper colors look like they have a LOT of contrast, but it's really not so on the card. (I need to stop buying art supplies and save my money up for a decent camera...).

To finish it of I used black soot around the edges of a piece of Dreamer paper from 7 Dots Studio and then sprinkled a bit of embossing powder on top of that .... it was a subtle finish to the card. 

Hope you are enjoying the day. Happy Easter. 

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

WOYWW #199

Wednesday rolls around once again, and so it's time for What's on Your Work Desk Wednesday, a weekly spin around the globe and a peak onto work spaces hosted by the amusing and lovely Julia of the Stamping Ground. My space can be described in two words: TABLE TIDY

As in, I did yet another table tidy last night and since my sweetie is leaving tonight on a sad family mission I haven't had a moment to make it messy yet.

This shows a couple of the things I've been working on - more progress on the April  class on "working smaller" -- need to finish the samples, YIKES;  six blueish ATC's for a swap at Helga's Artchix Blog, and a large canvas that is a start to birthday present for a dear friend who will be celebrating one of the "zero" birthdays in a few days.

In the background is a piece for Lifebook 2013 - a game board that I actually had a great time putting together. One of these weeks I'll pull my projects thus far together to share with my WOYWW friends.

Sorry so short, and sorry I wasn't able to get around to everyone last week. Lots going on in life; maybe one day it will be normal - yeah, right, huh?

Enjoy life - it's short. 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

WOYWW #198

Zip, zip, another week is gone...where does time go? And why can't I bottle it? It's Wednesday in some parts of world...time for another tour around the world at our creative spaces, thanks to the lovely Julia and her blog,  the Stamping Ground. This week my desk is about average I would say.

A hot mess of a journal page...but as I remind myself it's a process and I have some learnin' to do. If you look at this in the larger picture view you'll see a BIG note to self at the bottom. If you are going to use watercolor, don't start the drawing with a stabio pencil - it will turn into a big ole' black mess.

I've been working things on the next class for the Stamp Cache which is called 'Working Smaller'. I love these little cut-outs that Helga makes at The ArtChix Studio so we'll be making a few of these in April. The little house is a magnet and the beach scene will be popped up onto a card. We'll see what else I can come up with in the next few days.

If you look hard you can see one of the new Tim Holtz rub-on sentiments at the bottom - sweet life. I love these because they're transparent!

And finally this was the major creative project over the last week. 

As you can see I have a thing for dress forms, so I knew it was a natural to combine that shape with Tim Holtz's floral dies for his Tattered Floral Challenge. For more details on my entry click here. I'm off to link up and head out! Have a great week everyone.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Tim Holtz Tattered Florals & SSS Shabby Chic

I, like so many in the crafting world, owe a whole BUNCH to Tim Holtz, artist, creator, and by all counts an exceptionally nice human being. So when he issued a challenge to use his Tattered Floral Dies in a new way, I knew I had to step up my game and out of my box. Turns out my Shabby Chic project also fit into the Chic to Shabby challenge over at Simon Says Stamp. Love it when that happens!

I bought two of these tins moldings during the annual Cover-Ups "Up from the Basement" sale about 6 weeks ago thinking I would use them somehow. Since I had to be brave and try something new, it seemed this was a good time to give it a go.  I used a couple of dry coats of white, buff, and yellow paint on the background. 

For the flowers I wanted LOTS of texture. So I started with some of these:
  • Chipboard with crackling medium on it (a technique I tried in Creative Jump Start 2013)
  • Cheesecloth & Spray Starch
  • Window Screening
  • Stamped Coffee Filters glued onto Tin Foil
  • Packaging Plastic

Onto which I applied - in a variety of orders
  • Bundled Sage Distress Paint
  • Broken China Distress Paint
  • Black Soot Distress Paint
  • Golden Quinacridone "can't make art without it" Nickel Azo Gold Paint
  • Tarnished Brass Distress Stain
  • Sunflower Sparkle Perfect Pearls Mist
I used my fingers - I just couldn't get the same effect with any brush and smooched and wiped and sprayed and smooched some more until I was happy with the flowers.

I ran the packaging through a couple of the new embossing folders - loved the way the big compass worked. Enlarged the dress form on a copier and then glued it to black paper and cut it out. Pulled out some treasured buttons for the large flower centers, and since I knew basic black usually benefits from pearls I started playing around. Finally in one of the many hmmm moments, I tried the angle and liked that. Plus it gave me the opportunity to get a flower on the dress to pull it all together.

I'm really happy with this project. It made me stretch and it actually came out looking like I had envisioned it in my head.  So once again - THANKS TIM for inspiring me to reach further. Mixed Media is Me. 

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

WOYWW #197, Color and Words

Julia over at The Stamping Grounds cracks me up. I just love her sense of humor. Each Wednesday she sets up a post so we can link and spy at other people's work spaces....hers had a lot of activity on it this week. Unlike mine. I starting prepping this journal page on Sunday night I think. I'm taking an on-line class from Julie Fei-Fan Blazer on journaling and it's been lots of fun. Lots of new insights.

Had to work tonight and tomorrow the young adults who are the "kids" come home for a few days so it's going to be a busy week. I've been doing a lot of work in my art journals and thought I give a peak there too. My first art journal page was in October and I find I really, really like playing in them. Finally one day I hit upon why I like them so much. Color and Words. Two of my favorite things. Combined into one thing.

I've also been working on Lifebook 2013 and one project had us concentrating on our word for the year. Mine was more of a sentiment: This is the year I become an Artist. I think of lot of that is in your head...we all make art, we just have to own it. But I want to make a concentrate effort to LEARN and STUDY and DO this year. So I've been working on that too.

I used the remains of a paper I had die cut letters from as a stencil on the one above. 

Practice with white space

Practice with grids and white space
This one and the next three started from Julie's class

Now I'm off to check some of my friends' workspaces. Have a great week!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

From the Heart

Even tho I am eggs-haunted (family word for exhausted) and there is A LOT  going on there is no other word that describes how I feel about my life...mostly the man I share it with

I love my art journals. What could be better than color and words....sigh. Not much. 

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Diaster at the Work Desk!! Yikes

Been a busy and somewhat stressful couple of days up here....good thing I had ALL day on Saturday to play in my art journal and make a few cards...see previous posts. But sadly this is the current state of my work table. Ms. Julia over at Stamping Ground is ever so nice to connect us all around the world so we are able to create, share, and make friends. It's called WOYWW - short for What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday and this is the 196th time she's done it!  Cool huh?

The colorful file folder is full of Lifebook 2013 PDF's I finally remembered to copy on a good copier. The videos for these projects are really long, and I just haven't had enough time to really sit down and watch them. But I'm feeling readier (is that a word??) now.

I did just get the new Dylusions sprays, along with the Donna Downey stamps and stencils I ordered a while back which are sitting in a heap in the center along with some brass earrings that are so heavy they might actually make my head tilt...need to clip some of the beads off and re-posistion the ear piece so I might actually wear them. The rest of the stuff is just dribs and drabs of art making goodness.

Thanks for taking the time to snoop in the Fun Room!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Love 'Em - Don't Know Why I Don't Use 'Em

I got a text from my daughter last night trying to cajole me into sending her Girl Scout cookies in the mail. Turns out she really wants mail...and probably the cookies but as much as I like the Girl Scouts - having been one myself - the cookies are already plenty expensive and she can buy her own! But I did bite and decided to make a card for her on Sunday afternoon. I also wanted to participate in the Simon Says Stamp challenge of using a stamp you love but don't use often. Sadly I have, well, let's just say there were a lot of stamps to choose from.

The Fairy Stamp is a old Graphic 45 Stamp that doesn't seem to be available any more. I stamped her on a piece of manilla paper, colored in the edges with Spun Sugar and Bundled Sage Distress Inks, and went around the edge with Vintage Photo. I used Distress Markers and a water brush to color her dress and flowers, but the thing I now LOVE is the dry glitter I used on her wings.

OMG - this stuff is SO Cool. Well, it's from Tim Holtz, master of the universe, so I should have known, but it SOOOOO dimensional. Little late to this party, but I can't wait to use it again!

The other stamp I really like I got from my sister Daina and it was way before I knew Donna Downey fate would have it she's one of my current inspirations! I stamped it in clear and emossed it with the look. The other thing I want to mention is the trick I picked up from Tammy Tutterow about embossing the top of a brad. Super simple. Touch it to the Versamark pad, dip it in the embossing powder (with tweezers) and try it. And yes, I will say it. Don't touch it. It's metal. It's hot. You would think I get that. Nope. Ouch.
I mounted the whole paper on a piece of card stock and embossed some more dandelions, inside....and while for us spring is at least 6 if not 8 weeks away, it is sunny and the days are longer and it's all good!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

March - Coming in Like a Lamb

I had such fun making my March calendar. Perhaps it was because it involved coloring which I found particularly soothing after my stupid computer at work ate an entire afternoon's, don't even want to remember. So I came home on a Friday night and came right to the Fun Room to finish my calendar for the lovely Kate Crane's calendar challenge at her blog The Kathryn Wheel.

A sea scene in delight of the new Dylusions Ocean them!

I started with the seaweed and leaves on a separate piece of paper, colored those in, and then started cutting them out. Wasn't too long before I reached the conclusion I was NOT having fun. So I stamped right on my background and colored them in with a collection of Copic and Tombow markers. I used a white pigment ink pad to stamp the little fishies on the background and found some old Stamping Up! fishes my sister had given me which were easy to color and cut out.

I'm always challenged by the lettering for the page. March was no exception. These started life as white chipboard, which I almost used but decided it was too white. Painted them green, didn't like that. Covered them with distress stickles, wasn't crazy about that either. And then IT happened. I rubbed a little white paint on it and the stickles acted like a resist and I LOVED the result. Happy Accident. Yay.  I can't wait to try that combination on something else!

The circles are my continued attempt to push the envelope beyond the squares. They remind me of golf balls right now, but will look better once they are filled in, I'm sure. Lastly, here's February all done!