Saturday, March 31, 2012

Two weeks of treasuries, part 1

As we come to the close of another month, lots of BBArtisans are fulfilling their commitments and making treasuries.  Two weeks ago I was only in one treasury and this past week, I was in seven, which really surprised me.  So I decided to split my curator spotlights between two days, Saturday and Sunday.

Dreaming in flowers
On March 19th, Margaret of Splendid Little Stars featured my yellow and white watercolor doodle book in her flower treasury. Her products include a rainbow of colors and not pictorial images.  But what reminds me most of flowers were her soft pastels, like this silk scrunchie.  

You're my blue sky, you're my summy day...
Last weekend started the wonderful onslaught of treasuries from my teammates.  Sarah from Magnolia Surprise continued with the spring theme in "You're my blue sky, you're my sunny day..." with yellows and blues.  She made a great little card holder that will brighten up any day! 

Warm Spring Colors to Chase away the Cold Winter!
Kathy of tapestry316 also chose a spring theme, but her approach was completely different, which was a fun surprise.  She gathered darker shades for her "Warm Spring Colors to Chase away the Cold Winter!" treasury, and included one of my art journals, which has splashes of color on the cover.  Her own "Talk to the Tail" watercolor uses many of the greens she chose in her treasury; I love the sky she painted in the background.

A Touch of Lavender
The last treasury of the day is "A Touch of Lavender" curated by Judy of JNOriginals.  I love the different shades of purple she found, including my multi-purple and white Handmade Blank Journal.  Judy has a few scarves in her shop that fit just right in this treasury,  here's a close-up of one!

Tomorrow, a continuation of wonderful treasuries by the Blogging Business Artisans.  Interested in our group?  Come by our team page and have a look at the other requirements.  There's not a lot and there's a great bunch of ladies!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

AlphabeThursday - S is for Sun



When I here those four simple words,

 here comes the sun

I immediately think of the Beatles and their beautiful sweet song.  
Very appropriate for us in the northern hemisphere.
  You know the tune I'm speaking about - 
I think everyone in the world knows the Beatles' music.  

This journal page was very much a trial and error effort, with masking and tape covering, stamping and writing on little bits of paper.  I like how the background came together - first orange and then blue, making a fiery sky.  Remember, don’t give up on a drawing if you’re not happy with it; just apply some more materials! 

In case you'd like to listen to the song, here's a tribute to the songwriter, courtesy of  Beatlesrockthe60s.   Don't forget to come by and visit Ms. Jenny's AlphabeThursday.







Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Art Journaling - Daily Life


This is the second challenge of the month, for my Art Journaling Ning, hosted by Less Herger.  I wrote about the first one here.  This time, our challenge was to choose one thing in our daily life.
"Document it somehow, find beauty in it." 


These are the colors that were selected:
deep brick red, indigo blue and sap green.  

"The best part of waking up..."

I walked around the house, looking for the three colors in the challenge and came upon my empty coffee creamer, sitting on the counter ready for the recycling bin and my coffee container.  Every morning I wake up, make coffee, feed the dogs and get on the computer - now that's what I call daily life!  


This was my process: I sketched my little coffee table with everything on it.  Then added my colors and background wash.  Next I outlined the objects with ink.  


I thought the whole composition looked a little bland, so I smeared some coffee grounds all over the page.  That gave it a darker tone and seemed very appropriate.  I also added a bit more color to the background and a little message to myself.  That's a picture of my  morning, every morning!     

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Saturday Link List - using paper every day

Paper beads from the Storybeader
If you've visited my Etsy shop recently, you've see some of the paper beads that I’ve hand rolled.  This is something I started doing after I stopped making jewelry.  But I wondered, what other things are out there, that craftspeople are making with paper?

Origami Crane Mobile




Origami was the first thing that came to mind.  MadeByJo (on Etsy) has lots of origami creations and chiyogami tile pendants.  I thought this crane mobile was so sweet.  I love Japanese paper and have used them for my journal covers.  






There’s also a lot of opportunity to buy and learn how to make paper flowers online.  Whether it's for a special party or just to brighten up a room, pick your favorite colors and start folding!  Besides using regular paper, try tissue paper, like Leanneja did at organizeyourstuffnow :

Paper Pom Flowers

Paper flowers are especially useful for weddings.  Courtney (BookCraft) sells beautiful wedding bouquets and matching boutonniere sets on Etsy, made from books.  Don't forget the confetti!

BookCraft's paper flowers

Other paper items I thought of right away were lamps and different kinds of luminaries.  Before attempting anything myself, I wanted to check out what others were doing.  Again, off to Etsy, the "hamdmade capital of the internet!”  Allison (Zipper8Lighting) makes all kinds of lamps and wall sconces.  Here's my favorite lamp shade from her shop, what she calls an Artichoke Mixed Book Page Pendant Light:   

Artichoke Pendant Light
Isn’t it beautiful?  

DIY Luminaries tutorial



If you want to make a luminary of any type, you'll be needing some vellum; I'm thinking that the vellum is not as likely to catch on fire, but I‘m not sure why it‘s recommended.  If you know, please tell me/us!     Vellum was traditionally made from calf skin, but nowadays you can buy it made from vegetables.  Here's a box shaped luminary with instructions by Sarah, on a blog called "DIY or Don't".

Just think of all the different designs you can print on your vellum.  BTW, there are great printing instructions in the directions here, with lots of handy tips.  



Hope you found something you’d like to buy or make!  And if you’ve seen a good link list this week, feel free to add it into your comment for others to see.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

AlphabeThursday - r is for rose



Rose is the first word that popped into my head, that starts with the letter R.  
But the roses in my garden aren’t out yet.  How on earth am I going to 
illustrate my post without photos of roses?  And then it came to me.


I haven't drawn flowers yet, and I'm not experienced at still-life, but what the heck.  I've got to start using my new watercolor journal, the one I plan to take on vacation with me.  So I got out my favorite gardening book (The Garden Primer by Barbara Damrosch) and turned to the Roses section.  I love hybrid tea roses - they're so big and bold!  And they can be any color I want.  


So I sketched out a bud in pencil, outlined it with a Micron pen, and painted it in.  I tried to remember what I learned about shading faces and light direction, and apply it to the rose.  Then I went to the pruning section of my book to see how the leaves came off the stems, and painted them in.  I finished the drawing off with a little bit of blue at the bottom of the page, so the rose wasn't just floating all by its lonesome...


This might all sound a bit foolish to accomplished painters, 
but it was another big hurtle for me.  I painted my first rose bud!





To visit other AlphabeThursday class bloggers, visit Ms. Jenny's blog, ...off on my tangent...







Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Art Journaling - handmade postcards


I've come to the close of my art journaling class called Art Date Weekly, 
Part One (January 1 - March 16).  But then, I signed up for the whole year -  
Part Two begins April 1st.  Moira asked the class if anyone was interested in 
 participating in a Postcard Swap during our two-week break. 


 Of course, I bunch of us said yes.  


I decided to make five postcards, along with most of the others in my class.  
The thing is, last week, I started to fret about what to do.  


I have a bunch of old postcards, but that wouldn’t work.  
One of the requirements is to make your own cards.  
We’re allow to make one, scan it, 
and order photo prints.  But I decided to make every one different.  


On Saturday, I went through some old journal pages and glued them 
onto the commercial  postcards.  Then I added words and paint, tape, 
ribbons and glue in some way.  It was a good exercise for me; 
I was so worried at first but everything turned out fine.

I'm sharing this post with Get Your Craft On Tuesday

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Treasury Spotlight - Honey From the Bee

Gulf Oil Spill Talisman Pendant Necklace
I don't know how I missed marking Honey From the Bee as a Favorite Etsy shop.  I guess I was in too much of a rush to look around.  (Sorry about that, Janet!  I love your jewelry!)

Let me show you around and if you like her shop, you should make it a favorite too.

Poppy Lampwork Glass Pendant - Carnelian Bead Necklace
Janet uses the finest gems and lampwork beads as the foundation of her jewelry.  Her pendants are very thoughtful.  There are a few different shop sections, like "nature inspired" and "romantic pieces".  She even has jewelry care supplies.  And don't forget the earrings; there's LOTS to choose from; to wear separately or match to one of the necklaces, all starting at $10.00.  

Victorian Inspired Mourning Dog Necklace - For the Love of a Dog
Some of the pendants are the only beads on the necklace.  Other times there are matching gemstones.  Many of her necklaces have to do with the ocean; maybe that's why I love her work so much.  She also creates animal themed jewelry, like this Victoria inspired mourning dog necklace.  Very nicely done!

Handmade Necklace of Silver Chain maille - Lampwork Bead focal
Just look at this beautiful lampwork bead on the "Sterling Silver graduated Byzantine chain"!  I love it.  It would be perfect, too, for the man who wears chains.  

Sunshine on my shoulders
And now I come to the reason I started my search through Janet's shop.  Her treasury (with members of the BBArtisans and UWB Team), called Sunshine on my Shoulders, was the only one I was in this week.  Great title for all these bright, cheerful pieces of art.  She included my summertime paper beads.  Thanks, Janet!  And what would I choose to include in this treasury, from her shop?  

What about her Bright Pink Bracelet!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Saturday Link List - font styles

I've been wanting to do a font link for some time.  Most of the sites dealing with different fonts have to do with web developers and layout designers.  So I'll show you a combination of downloadable apps and some artists I admire, who use both of letters and words.  

One site that has different types of DIY and font offers is called kevin {&} amanada.  They have scrapbooking fonts, cards and different paper projects.

Have you ever downloaded free fonts before?  They frequently have large files and use zip files, which take winzip to open.  If you wait to download winzip when you're downloading a font file, the web site will ask for money.  So make sure you have winzip on your computer before you start.  It's a free download - don't get ripped off.   

One of my favorite fonts I've run across is this high resolution wooden scrabble font, that's brought to you by fuzzimo.com.  Don't you think it would be fun, writing with this!



Ever dream of using your own handwriting as a font?  There's a website called My Script Font, where you can create your own handwriting as one of your font styles.  Here's a sample of a font Moira Richardson (my art journaling instructor) made as an example for one of my classes.  Neat idea, eh?  I've been planning on doing this after she showed us the site, but haven't gotten around to it yet.  


Here's a print by a graphic artist I met on pinterest.  His name is Matt Lyon.  Doesn't his artwork reminds you of Peter Max?  I guess it's the vivid colors and the upbeat feel.  His letters are so groovy!  Great quote; I have to admit I layout my blog posts before I upload them into Blogger...

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

AlphabeThursday - Q is for Quarter



"A penny saved is
A penny earned."  Not for long.
No more pennies soon.



It cost about 2.5¢ to mint a penny. Now that's not good business sense if you ask me. There are many arguments people have to keep the penny around. One is that it's a good coin for charity. But I would be embarrassed to give a penny for a contribution.

Pennies just don't go very far anymore...


Now a quarter, that a fourth of a dollar. A good denomination for tips. To use when you don't have the exact change.  Nothing costs under a dollar anymore, not ever a pack of gum!  Just to use coins to reach one dollar either means 100 pennies or 4 quarters.  I don't think people carry around 100 pennies in their pockets or change purses!

And we still use the quarter for measuring.  Never a penny.  We'll say a quarter of a circle, one-fourth, a quart, 25%.  Never one one-hundredth.  

I'm for getting rid of the penny.  How about you?

We've got about ¼ of the alphabet to go, to reach the end of this round of  AlphabeThursday.  Come and visit Ms. Jenny's blog and see what other words people chose for their AlphabeThursday post.


Tuesday, March 13, 2012

BBArtisans March Challenge - Turquoise and Red




Every month, BBArtisans team members have the opportunity to participate in a monthly challenge.  This month our theme (hosted by Rose of Random Creative) is to use the  color combination of turquoise and red in a new piece of art.  


I thought I'd take this opportunity to fulfill one of my short-term goals:  stamping on ribbon.  A good friend gave me some colored ribbons; two of the colors were turquoise and red.  Wasn't that fitting!

I wasn't sure if the ink in my stamp pads would stick to the ribbon without smudging.  But they both worked well enough.  The turquoise is a brand that I hadn't used before by Tsukineko called Versa Magic chalk ink.  It's very vivid!  The red is a more popular brand called Jim Holtz Distress Ink, which is a dye ink.  Both products are acid free.   

After the ribbons were stamped, I glued them into my art journal and completed my page.  The background is colored with stamp pad inks, watercolors, coptic markers and micron pens.  That attractive woman isn't me; just a model.  

Sunday, March 11, 2012

BBArtisans Team Treasuries

Here's two treasuries from curators belonging to the BBArtisans team.  Both will get you thinking about weddings!  I went into the curator's shops and chose an item that I thought would best match their treasury.  So enjoy; click on the words to link through to Etsy.

from NFallonDesignStudio
First of all, let's congratulate Nancy (NFallonDesignStudio) on her recent marriage.  Her treasury this week is called Wedding in Early Spring.  No wonder she's thinking of weddings!  I was looking for a gift tag or invitation that would fit well with her treasury, but then saw this note card that I've never seen before.  It says "today love smiled on me."    Perfect!


from Memories For Life
Edi's treasury (memories for life) is called Flower Power, and is filled with all sorts of plant life. What makes it so neat is that the items are made from  all different mediums!  I picked from her shop a wooden guest book/photo album, perfect for a wedding.  This is a custom order; you can pick your own paper and choose your own wording for the cover.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Saturday Link List - folk art

One of my favorite forms of art is what I call Folk Art.

Folk art is defined as art originating among the common people of a nation or region and usually reflecting their traditional cultures especially everyday or festive items.
When I was in Santa Fe on vacation one year, I knew I had to stop at the Museum of International Folk Art.  One of their permanent exhibitions is called Multiple Visions: a Common Bond.  Oh Boy!  What a feast for the eyes!  Thousands of small toys and miniatures are scattered around the large gallery - not to be missed if you're visiting New Mexico.  This book (above) is about the collection.

The Virgin Rose



An artist on Etsy reminds me of Mexican folk art with her tin nichos (see right).  These are little shadow boxes or shrines that can be hung on the wall.  This is an example of one that I really enjoyed.  And she has more!  Look for them and the other Mexican folk art in her shop, TheVirginRose.


Skelly Skeleton 

There are other folk artists on Etsy who I've been following for a long time.  Jannell Berryman's art (left) and Campbell Jane (below) are two I have interviewed over the past few years.  Janell's art dolls are cute... and creepy.  I interviewed her back on May 8, 2009.  The interview and pics are still there, but the links don't work because she opened a new shop in Sept 2010.  Go by and check out her blog too - it's loads of fun! 


I originally met Campbell Jane through Entrecard.  She sells on Etsy, Artfire and other sites like Zazzle and CafePress.  I interviewed her back in the Spring of 2010 - many of the links from my post still work, if you want to use them.  Or just hop on over to her Etsy shop, Campbell Jane.  

I love all her water ladies.  You can watch her paint (time lapse) on YouTube   - it's like sitting in the room with her!    

Traditional Russian Nesting Dolls

And aren't these little matryoshka ("nesting") dolls adorable!  This 5-piece set (above) is handmade in Russla.  Anastassya has made a lot of non-traditional dolls too, but I like these best.  Go by and give this Etsy artist some love!  

Nesting dolls made of gourds
Now if you want to try your hand at making some nesting dolls yourself, Pam at gingerbreadsnowflakes has instructions on making them out of gourds.

Worry Dolls from Guatemala
There's other folk art on Etsy - an easy tag to enter if you're interested.  My favorites are molas, but I've written about them a lot.  You can also try some commercial sites online to see and purchase folk art.  I think these "Worry Dolls" are really special.  What you do is tell your worries to them and place them under your pillows at night.  In the morning, the dolls have taken all your worries away.  I found an online website where they sell the dolls.  Their little boxes are pretty special too!

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