Friday, March 6, 2015

10 of 10

Maybe I should start with a little background.  Last year I was a member of the Art Journal Caravan, led by Tangie Baxter.  Sadly 2014 was the last year for that journey (the badge in the side panel still works, but you can’t get into anything at that URL now).  BUT – this year Tangie has a new website and a new adventure called Art Journal Emporium and, of course, I am a member there.  Someday I will remember to add that badge to my side panel!

img014So . . . one of the projects for AJE was to do a series of ten artworks about the same subject.  I chose Houses.

Looking through my journaling scrapbooks and inspiration files, I found tons of pictures I had cut out, sketched, and saved of houses of all kinds – victorian houses, run-down houses, fairy houses, cottages, and hillsides filled with houses.  Hmmm.  Perhaps I have a thing about houses, huh?
Alright, let’s see what I came up with:


House 1 of 10
First I had a rummage through my stamp collection.  Can you believe I only had ONE house stamp?  Well, the only solution is to use it a lot on this spread in my journal.


House 2 of 10

I love Victorian style houses with their “gingerbread” and shutters.  I drew this one from my imagination, but there are some “Painted Ladies” in my town that I need to get photographed and sketched some day.

  House 3 of 10
This one is a little different.  I collaged this house using magazine pictures.  The house itself is from an article on handbags!  It was a lot of fun cutting out random shapes and figuring how they would become parts of a house.

House 4 of 10
There was a crooked little man who lived in a crooked little house.  I went a little wild with some of the crooked-ness.  I seriously doubt anyone wants to stand on that balcony!  I used Copic markers and Sharpie for this drawing.

House 5 of 10
This little fairy house was from an old catalog.  I scanned it into my computer and did a digital layout.  I used elements from Tangie Baxter and Rebecca McMeen (Tangie’s talented mom).


House 6 of 10
Another digital layout.  I have had these cool houses since I first started playing with digital art, but never got around to finding a use for them.  Well, I can’t say that anymore!  The collection is called Cosmopolitan by Maya.


House 7 of 10
I think this was the most fun to do!  Another idea I had cut out and saved, these houses are based on the legend of Baba Yaga.  She lived in a house with chicken feet.  I grabbed some felt scraps and started playing.  It actually stands by itself – amazing!

House 8 of 10 720X900

House 8 of 10
Another place I have been collecting houses is the designs for my Silhouette Cameo cutter.  Time to choose one and actually use it!  The details (shadows, grass, etc.) is done with Copic markers.


House 9 of 10
Almost done.  This time I made an Artist Trading Card (ATC).  Partly because the houses are pretty small, and partly because I was saving time for the Big Finish!  The image is from a needlework catalog.  I’d love to stitch this pattern, but I doubt I’ll get to it in this lifetime!

House 10 of 10House-10-of-10

TaDa!  Last, but certainly not the least.  When I realized I had only one house stamp I did the only sensible thing – buy more!  Fortunately,  Barbara at has just released some new stamps, including some houses.  So now I can do houses whenever I want to!  I stamped them onto multi-media paper and colored them in using copic markers (I really love those markers!) and watercolor pencils.  I put Scor double-sided tape on the back before cutting them out.  It was pretty easy to just stick them down on a prepared background and – bingo – ten house artworks!

This was the first time I’ve tried working in a series.  Not my usual style, given my scatter-shot approach to most things.  I had fun – and I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing the results.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Dear Little Blog,

So, here we are – more than a month since my last post!  I’ve thought of you, dear little blog, but there doesn’t seem to be a lot of excitement about writing.  You see, people change and little blogs need to change sometimes, too.  It’s my fault, really.  My interests have been moving into new areas.  This isn’t a bad thing.  In fact, I’ve been having a lot of fun learning new things, making messes, and so on.

When I started writing, this little blog was all about making dolls and sewing and happy crafty endeavors.  Then we shifted into quilting and sewing little bits of fabric together to make bigger bits.

And now, I am moving into a more artistic phase.  I am doing an awful lot of work on my computer, as well as on paper.  And I find myself “scrapping” photos – something I swore I would never do!   OK, I think we’ve established that change happens!

So, in the future there will be more posts of the Art Journal variety.  Oh, don’t worry – there will still be dolls and the occasional quilty post.  But, if I am going to keep you alive, little blog, we will have to make room for the news things, too.

In that spirit, here are some Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) I’ve been working on this month.  An online group (Tangie’s Art Journal Emporium) gives us a one-word prompt for each day to do our Daily Art Dose.  Some people draw pictures, one is working on lettering – I am making ATCs.

ATCFeb5-7ATCFeb8-12Copy of ATC-Feb13-14ATC-Feb15-18ATC-Feb19-21

These have been a lot of fun to create.  I’m sure there will be more to show you as the months go by.  I have a few other things coming up, too, so stay tuned.

So, I’m sorry you’ve been lonely, little blog.  Let’s start over and see what new things we can discover together.  OK?

Friday, January 16, 2015

Adventures in Art Journaling

I uploaded photos from my camera today – and found a lot of pix of my journaling explorations!  Guess I should upload more often!


I started in a new sketchbook/journal with a plain black cover.  That just won’t do!  So I used a couple of stencils, some molding paste, an oil pastel stick, and voila!  I love it, but next time I won’t use molding paste on something that is moved around a lot.  I’m finding little white pastey things all over the place!


Here’s a couple of the pages I’ve done so far.  One thing I want to do this year is use my Silhouette Cameo more often.  I have been collecting TONS of shapes, but not doing very much with them.  So, I’m trying to cut at least one shape a week and do something with it.  I experimented with cutting some stamps (the ‘January’, ‘create’, arrow, and figure) with mixed results.  It seems to be better with large stamped areas.  I love the arrow stamp, though.  Definitely worth the hassle!


I decided I needed another, smaller, journal for an online class I’m taking.  For this one, I cut up a large “doodle” page for the cover and bound some watercolor paper and drawing paper as the pages.


It’s simple, but colorful!  Just the right size (9”x6”, give or take) and I keep it next to my easy chair, handy for the class exercises and other doodling.  A small bit of Velcro keeps it neatly closed.  What would we ever do without DeMestral’s invention?


And the first thing I did was doodle a mandala!  I used a box of crayons I picked up some time ago, but had never opened.  I love playing with new crayons!!  You can see I also made a list of 10 things that inspire me . . . still working on number 10!  It’ll come to me.


And that page I cut up for the cover?  There’s a lot left, so I cut some of it into ATC sizes.  Ready made backgrounds for when the Muse strikes.  And there’s still some of the page left for future projects.  Yes, it was a Large page!

So that’s one of the things I’ve been doing lately.  Maybe I’ll remember to take pictures of my other projects some day.  Oh yeah – and upload from the camera!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Merry Christmas

Everybody in blogland is posting their holiday wishes today, so I may as well join in. 

Copy of xmas2014-option2_01

Copy of xmas2014-option2_02

I hope I can be more productive in 2015 and that I’ll have lots of things to share with my readers.  See you on the flip side.


Sunday, November 30, 2014

Another Dare Answered

I’m back with another page of digital “art.”  This time it’s actually a scrapbook page!
fatherson 900X900
Credits:  Dawn Inskip, Create collection; Manuela Zimmerman, Sound of Music; Studio Viva, Revel-Alissa, font – Harabara Hand
I don’t normally scrapbook in the traditional sense.  Our pre-digital photos are all stuck in those “magnetic” albums with no notes beyond an occasional date.  Of course, nowadays we realize how insecure those albums were.  I’ve been trying to scan photos, but it’s all in fits and starts.  These photos are all from the early 1970s and when I notice a theme developing I decided to do this page.  Just for fun!
About half way through, I realized that I could use this for The Digi Dares Dare #392.  The dare requirements are (1) use a layout that goes from edge to edge.  Check.  (2) use paper strips.  Check (although I used just one, it counts!).  (3) use two photos, one horizontal and one vertical.  Check.  Yeah, I know there are more than two photos, but I think I nailed the horizontal vs. vertical thing!
If you’d like to see other interpretations of this dare, head on over to the Digi Dares web site and read the comments for Dare #392.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Digital Art

I have been spending Sundays this year, working on digital art journal pages.  I’ve managed to keep up all year, as well as learn my around Photoshop Elements.  Pretty well, if I do say so myself!
Since it is November, I’m thinking about what I will do next year.  The Art Journal Caravan will not continue next year, so I have looked around to see what else I might be interested in.
One option is The Digi Dares.  I guess the only way to tell if I like it is to dive in!  So this is my page for Dare #393.  The focus is on daily gratitude for the little things.  You can find the terms of this Dare here
Fur babies 900X719
The Daily Digi – Inbox Party, Amanda Yi – You’re the One That I Want, Studio Ztampf – Enter the Dragon, Lynn Anzelc – Together, Cinzia – Holiday Cheer.
My regular readers (all 3 of you!) will recognize Jake and Barney.  These fur babies never fail to make me smile and I’m so thankful to have them.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Goldilocks and the 3 Quilts


I finished these three quilts today.  By “finished” I mean “attached the labels.”  Two of them were waiting for the third to catch up.  How about a little story?


This summer I went on a Shop Hop and bought three charm packs with the intention of making some pinwheel quilts.  The method is super simple . . . place two charms right sides together and stitch on all four edges.  Cut each pair from corner to corner twice – like an X.  Press the HSTs that result and sew them back together.

Quilt #1:


I paired all the charms from one package, which resulted in 21 blocks.  That’s not enough for a lap quilt, so I dug around in my stash and found this green that worked great with the collections (Moda’s Merriment).  A quarter yard of red and it’s ready to quilt.


For some reason, I decided to do the border with parallel lines . . . 3/8 of an inch apart.  Do you have any idea how long it takes to stitch all those lines?!?!!  That was just toooo much!

Quilt #2:


In the meantime, I’ve read an article that says you need two charm packs for a lap size quilt.  So I picked out a Bella Solid or two (or three, they’re inexpensive!) to coordinate with this collection (Moda’s Snowbird).  Not bad, but it needs a border, so back to buy some yardage from the collection.  So much for “just a charm pack!”


Hoping to save on quilting time, I decided on a meandering ribbon pattern.  It’s been awhile since I’ve done any free motion quilting and I guess I should have done a little practice first.  My ribbons are too far apart and pretty jerky and lumpy.  This time it was toooo little.

Quilt #3:


At this point I’m thinking I’d like to try something different.  What if I added strips to make bigger blocks?  And how about some sashing, too.  That works pretty well and since I was buying fabric anyway, I got some yardage to match this collection, too.  This is my favorite anyway – Snowman Frolic.  Those snowmen are just too cute!


I found a fairly easy quilting pattern involving wavy lines and circles.  It went much better, probably because I was already warmed up from the second quilt.  On the borders I did a wide diagonal grid which worked up nice and quick.  This one was juuuuust right!

Now I know how Goldilocks felt!

These three quilts are destined to go to my quilt guild’s charity project.  I enjoyed making the pinwheels, but I think I’ve done enough for now.  Time to get back to something more complex.  Hmmm.  Maybe some paper piecing.