Sunday, November 9, 2008

New Art finally and shhhh maybe being published again

Well two surgeries this year and other assorted events kind of zapped my time and energy. But hopefully I'm getting back in the swing of things.

And I've been contacted by a magazine about one of my cards so maybe in a new publication soon. I don't submit my cards so this was submitted for me by one of the swaps I was in. Hmmm...exciting stuff.

Here's my first Christmas card creation of the year and a quick ATC. And look I finally took the time to make signature blocks to add to my artwork.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

It's time to go Pink!

Thanks to a friend, I've got lots of "Pink" tags on my sidebar now. She really shouldn't have introduced me to them. But it's a passion of mine and not only is the Race for the Cure coming up Oct. 4th but so is "Scrap Pink" 20 hours of artwork dedicated to Breast Cancer Awareness with proceeds benefiting the Susan G. Komen Foundation. I'm hosting our 3rd annual Pink Ribbon swap over on the OSA list and will be making books to hold Pink ATCs this year. I've got a lot of catching up to do but I do love "blogging without obligation" but even I went too long this time. More soon.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Creative Lettering

I'm taking one of Nicolettes Creative Lettering classes. Since I've been doing mail art envelopes and trying to doodle more, I thought I'd brush up on my lettering. I've never had the patience to sit through the precision of calligraphy so I developed my own style. I'm looking forward to expanding my lettering techniques again. This should be fun and enjoyable. And the best thing about class is I can work at my own pace in my own timing, no deadlines. If you are looking to expand your doodling techniques you might consider a class. Nicolette is listed in my favorite links and favorite blogs. I encourage everyone to try something new this week. Have fun and experiment you'll be pleasantly surprised.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Still sorting

I'm still not up to the point where I can publish after pictures but I'm still sorting. The doctor was kind enough to give me a steroid shot to the knee Monday but I've still been able to do a little bit everyday this week and it feels so good to keep making progress. I think I pretty much have my organizer bags sorted out the way I'd like. I'm keeping 2 rolling totes packed and ready to travel to the scrapbook store to create cards and artwork on crop nights. I packed a basic supply kit of assorted cardstock, stamps and mini inkpads so I'm ready to roll. I also have a Krafter's purse on a carousel on my desk I work from all the time and a shoulder tote packed to travel also. I arranged my totes so I can work out of them at home without unpacking them all the time. What has to be my most favorite new organizational tool is the rolling beauty supply cart. I wanted an art taboret for beside my desk to keep the clutter to a minimum while I worked but keep several things handy. An art taboret can be pricey. Since I have a daughter in cosmetology school and saw that the beauty carts are similar to what I wanted, I waited until our local beauty supply had a sale and picked one up. It's a bit easier to keep the top of my desk clean now. Baby steps work as long as I keep seeing progress. It was really important to get my totes sorted out this week. Excitement builds as the Creating Keepsakes Convention in Tulsa draws closer next week. I'm going with 2 friends and we are taking 3 classes on Friday and plan to lay around the hotel room and veg on Saturday and play in our art supplies. I'm really looking forward to a creative weekend.

Playing with new paper

This is paper I picked up at the scrap store not quite knowing what I was going to do with it but it look like fun. So far these are the 2 creations I've made with it. A birthday card for my son's friend and a mingle page for another group. I really like how both came out.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Document 31 or Help I'm drowning in my art supplies

Well, I made a valiant effort at my Doc-u-ment 31 but missed the last half of July. It's rough to do anything with 3 hour PT sessions 3 days a week. But I did document most of my month and this is part of it. These are the before pictures of part of my art space. As you can guess from the photos I don't have a room to call my own. This is actually the dining area of my home. Hubby calls it command central but as you can see it's seriously unorganized at the moment. It's going to take some time but I'm slowly working it into shape. The goal for this area is to get it straightened out again, thinned out, and work on a better layout for most used supplies. I'm motivated in the next couple of weeks to get the thinning done as our local scrapbook store is having another "Trade Days" event or basically an art garage sale. I have dibs on a table already and determined to let some more stuff find a new home. I made almost enough at the last Trade Days to pay for a new rolling tote. Mine had blown out a zipper. I now have 2 nice new rolling totes thanks to a couple of good sale finds. Much easier to travel with and almost packed nicely too. Anyway, I'm going to keep on Documenting the odd day here and there. I'm finding it helps clear the mind a bit and flesh out goals and art ideas. Now to get my journal finished.

Superhero Anyone?

Let's get this blog shook up and rolling a bit more. Spending another 6 weeks in physical therapy just zaps my energy and creativity. But I'm finally getting caught up with some artwork. I created this envelope from scratch to compliment the postage stamps and then made a matching ATC.

Monday, July 7, 2008

July 2nd

Here's my Doc-u-ment 31 for July 2nd:

Don't know how well you can see the peacock image in this wrought iron fence but I thought it was so cool. Art in unexpected places, should look for it more often. This wrought iron fence is surrounding a large tree in our new pediatrician's office. The tree is filled with butterflies, birds, stuffed monkeys and snakes. Surrounding the tree is "water" with stuffed rainbow fishy poking out along with river rock and the like. But since I like peacock's so much, that's what caught my attention the most.

My Document 31

Well let's see how well I can keep up blogging and journaling this month. I decided to take up this challenge:

So far I have a picture for each day and most of my journaling but I haven'e made my book yet. Started but not there.

So here's a snippet of July 1st:

I decided I needed a break from regular household duties and declared it "me" week. With the Document 31 challenge I decided to declare it "me" month. Unfortunately some home duties can't be avoided but I will be spending more time chillin' just for me. So I'm moseying along at my pace. So today I'm poking about the house, got some extra rest and cleaned off my art desk. The picture of the day is Shadow one of my fur babies. She's laying next to my desk chair and just luxuriated in a round of pets from mom. Here's to a luxuriating month of "me".

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Envelope Catch-up

These are my envelope creations for the past couple of months. I'm enjoying the challenge of trying to come up with ideas to decorate the envelope with and try and match the stamps. I always duplicate my envelopes in case I really mess one up and you get to see the no address ones. March and April I didn't have enough stamps to match the envelopes thanks to the PO not getting in new stamps because of the price increase. Now to come up with May's design.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Graduation and Prom

We never do things conventionally around here.
My daughter Shyloh is celebrating her Senior year and graduation this month.
She designed her photo for her graduation invitation and mom matted it and added some bling. Here is her prom picture. Mom wasn't the best with the camera considering it was a week after my shoulder surgery but it will have to do. This weekend I'm heading to our new scrapbook store to make her a graduation book. We are absolutely the proud parents. She went to the Oklahoma Scholastic Media awards recently and took 1st and 2nd place in sports photography, 2nd place in sports journalism and the big award....Oklahoma Photographer of the Year at the high school level. Then she received a $2000 scholarship to the prestigious Oklahoma Art Institute's summer program where she will get to spend 2 weeks with a master photographer learning more about her favorite passion. She also attends technical school and took gold at the local level of Skills USA and took 2nd at state competition in business. This gives her a 600 hour scholarship in her program. She is graduating high school with art and journalism honors. Awesome!

Monday, May 5, 2008

Black and White

I started working on a series of black and white designs after seeing several great examples on the web. A couple of these are card "lifted" and changed a hair to suit my stamps and what I envisioned for the card. Not showing well on the scan is the rhinestones in the center of the dandelions and that I used black Stickles on the dots of the second card. I couldn't resist adding the bird from my quickcuts die. A friend had given me the Formal Affair paper collection by Scrapworks for Christmas and it has some wonderful black and white and black and cream patterns in it, so I've been working with some of these papers for my cards. I have a few more ideas to work on but I've made a good start here I think.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Back on the Creative Track

Well, I'm finally feeling better and looking forward to updating my blog a bit more regularly now that my shoulder is fixed. Yeah! It's amazing how much pain a simple bone spur can cause. I'm thankful that I have a good doctor and he scheduled surgery to take care of it before it caused tearing of the rotator cuff. It will be another 4 weeks before I'm more active but I'm already doing short bits of creating. So my goal this week is to start posting new pics on Thursday this week. Today and tomorrow are filled with check-ups and PT and grocery shopping with help of course. Another project I'm debating is weeding out and reorganizing my supplies again. Seems to be a yearly bug but when you've got limited space, it's either work with it or it becomes a disaster quick. Hubby wants the breakfast nook back for a small table and chairs. We haven't had a dining room table in a little over 6 years now but with the kids getting older, I think he feels we can sit and chat sometimes over a meal or snack. He's preferred his meals in front of the TV since we married after working 12 and 14 hour days so he could zone out. It's kind of sweet that we are planning more ways to spend time on us. And we did the requisite family meals when the kiddos were younger, then he went and turned on the TV :0) Family meals now are usually reserved for holidays and birthdays. Until the shoulder is stronger, organizing is limited to the planning stages. Since our retreat had to be canceled due to my shoulder and being short a couple of participants for the retreat center, I can't wait until Saturday! We have a brand new scrap store in town and I'm going to the all day crop for National Scrapbooking Day. Love the new store and the owner Leslie is so friendly and wonderful! I like shopping where I feel welcome. And since May is my birthday month, what better way to celebrate then signing up for a couple of new classes. So I've already treated myself to my birthday presents. :o) Plus I got in a handful of new stamps to do some new design work. Designing is half the fun. So after I update some of my work for the past couple of months, there will be some fresh work arriving soon.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Cool Backgrounds

While perusing blogs of favorite artists, I came across a cheesecloth background technique. I thought cool and tried it but wasn't thrilled. Not wanting to give up on the cheesecloth background entirely, I got out my trusty color sprays, in this case Radiant Rains. The top half of the picture shows the first spray through the cheescloth. The bottom half shows a fresh sheet of card stock that's been brayered with the wet cheesecloth after the first spray. Both are equally intriguing but the bottom is my favorite.

The Behinder I get

Well I have to apologize for being slow, or maybe I don't. I blew out my left shoulder and have been living with all kinds of pain. So I'm slower than I'd like getting retreat samples made and posted. I get to have surgery 4 days after the retreat, so I'm thankful I get to do the retreat first. So my blog updates will continue to be sporadic at best. So I'm going to post several items over the next week or two starting with a background technique that's not part of the retreat.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Oklahoma Artist Retreat 2008

Live in or near Oklahoma? Like to spend an affordable weekend making art? Then OAR 2008 may be just the thing for you.

  • Oklahoma Artist Retreat 2008 presents:
  • "Create the Song in Your Heart"
  • April 11-13
  • An affordable weekend getaway of fun, fellowship and art.
  • Cost $130 includes 2 nights lodging, 6 meals and project supplies
  • Most supplies will be included in the kits for each project. You will still need to bring a basic tool kit consisting of scissors, ruler, paper trimmer, stylus, bone folder, pencil, pen, Sharpie, hole punch, exacto knife and an adhesive assortment to include your favorite, tape, glue, foam or glue dots.
  • All participants will receive a goody bag just for fun.

  • Projects include the following:
  • Birdsong and Flowers - Creating an assortment of greeting cards, portfolio and gift project.
  • Clear Singing - Playing with clear cards and shapes and perhaps a small clear book.
  • Tag Notes - Based on Julia Andrus' Book "Paper Transformed" we will be experimenting with different paper techniques to enhance your artwork and creating a sample tag book.
  • Travel Music - Travel to exotic locations while creating a book suitable for a travel scrapbook or an altered theme book.
  • Board Tunes - A bit of play with stamp board.
Saturday evening will include some "me" time to work on a project of your choice, just chill and relax or go shopping.

Retreat is limited to 10 people. So grab a friend and join us for a weekend of fun!

Lunar New Year Mail Art

This was a fun design to do with the new Chinese New Year stamps from the PO.
Fortunately I received an actual canceled stamp in the mail for the ATC.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Little Angel Puppy

Well life jumped up and bit us again. I'm just getting over being sick with bronchitis and Sasha contracted Parvo and passed away on Thursday Jan. 24th. She was such a sweet baby right up until she went to sleep and never woke up again, she just was just too tiny to fight off such a horrible disease. So our lives are dogless again, we are going to wait a couple of more months before we try again. I cannot tell you how much it means to have such a terrific vet during times like this. Dr. Eskew is just wonderful.

So for a few months I'll turn my energy to practicing bellydance routines for the grand opening of the new studio in April, this year's Oklahoma Artist's Retreat and our 30th wedding anniversary.

We are incredibly blessed and life does go on.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Introducing our Newest Family Member

Meet Sasha the newest member of our family. We brought her home from the shelter yesterday and as is their tradition, they didn't exactly get her breed correct on the first try. They had her labeled as a Border Collie when we picked her out last week, well she's not, she's part black German Shepherd. She's a cutie for sure. She's 9-10 weeks old and already very much a mommy's girl. Now if we can just get her trained proper we'll be doing OK.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Bamboo ATC

Here is the ATC I originally created the background for that I used on the middle eastern style card below. I was really please how this turned out because I created the haiku before I new what design I was using on the card. The moon is watercolored in gold and I embossed the bamboo image in topiary which is a green/gold mix. I would give credit for the image except I can't remember who I bought it from. I can tell you it was at a convention about 6 years ago. I have since learned to label my UMs when I get them.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Middle Eastern Beauty

I had fun making this card for my bellydance instructor. Because of the ice storms I missed giving her the Christmas present I got her. So since Christmas has come and gone I made her this card as a thank-you for being such a great instructor and tucking her gift card inside. And speaking of inside, I decided to carry the design theme into the inside of the card so you see the front and the inside here. I used Radiant Rains to create the background that I stamped on. A combination of Irish Mist and Solar Gold. I often brush out the colors after I spray them to blend them more. I had actually designed the background for a set of ATCs and since I made extra, I decided to use it here also.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Decorating Envelopes

I'm in a new swap this year where we make mail art envelopes hopefully to match the stamp that we've picked out to mail it with. I've only decorated a couple of mail art envelopes before this so I was really tickled when this one came out so good. The background is made with Twinkling H2O's and since a little edged over onto the back, I figured, what the heck, lets do both sides of the envelope. The lighthouse stamp is from Prickley Pear rubber stamps, the rocks in the foreground and the water on the reverse are from Stampscapes, the clouds are from All Night Media and the birds are a Penny Black stamp. The saying is my own. It's a little hard to see on the scan but there are light "rays" coming from the lighthouse. I used my favorite glitter pens by Uniball Signo in gold to make the rays. The whole envelope was sealed with workable fixative to protect the watercolors. I'll be making an envelope each month and it's definitely a challenge to come up with a design to match the stamp but it should be lots of fun!

Japanese Stab Bound Books

This book was so much fun to make. I just love this peacock stamp from Prickley Pear rubber stamps.The peacock is gold embossed and studded with black rhinestones. The red book came out great also. I used the peek-a-boo geisha from About Art Accents and the diamond stamp is from Above the Mark and is actually a larger background stamp that I just inked and stamped a row of and then added more black rhinestones to.
I hosted a book swap on the Oriental Stamp Art list in 2007 and these books are quick to put together and are just beautiful when done. Can't wait to come up with an idea for this years swap.

ATC Extravaganza

These are some of the ATC's I've created the past couple of months for swaps and RAKs.
I often use just bits and pieces left over from previous projects and will often grab whatever stamps are handy at the time. Other times they are carefully planned by theme or color. They are always fun to put together.

The orange butterfly was done on a hand colored paper done with Easter egg dyes. Lots of fun. The turquoise fans were done with a new stamp and scraps. The glittery flower used DCWV Far East paper and diecut. The 3 red flowers are made with the remaining negative after punching flowers and a scrap of yuzen paper behind.
The geisha collage looks similar to the butterfly paper above but was created with Zia's color wash jewel sprays.

The "B" is for butterfly and bamboo ATC was made using pieces left over from previous projects. The cat in the bamboo was made from stamps that I had out at the moment. The "C"
is for Cat ATC was made from pieces but I specifically looked for papers with the colors used.

My handpainted scraps make excellent bits for ATCs. For the "D" is for dragonfly ATC, I used a piece of the "patchwork" paper I made from yuzen scraps. Too pretty and sometimes costly to throw out the smallest piece, I took a sheet of cardstock, applied xyron adhesive to one side and then started layering scraps on top to fill the whole sheet. It's really beautiful when done. I had the dickens of a time coming up with something for "E" in my stamps so the kanji for eternity was printed off the net and I stamped the word underneath.

ATCs are lots of fun and so quick to make.