Friday, July 25, 2014

Double Dipping for Christmas in July!

Since my crafting time is at a premium at the moment, I'm "double dipping"! The following project qualifies for two of my teams, which have the same challenge!!!

Gez is your hostess for this week's challenge, which is Christmas in July! Here's what she had to say about her challenge.
It's never too early to start thinking about Christmas right?!! ;-) I thought it would be nice for us to spread a wave of festive cheer throughout Blogland!

Every year I set out with good intentions and imagine a great big stack of handmade Christmas cards all ready to send out nice and early in December, in reality I think it's happened once! So, lets do it together! Dig deep and crack open the Christmas stash box early!!

This is a fun challenge, I hope you enjoy it too!
If you'd like the chance to win $30 worth of Stampotique stamps, you should play along. Visit Stampotique Designers Challenge blog and be sure to read the rules, so that you'll have the chance to win a great prize!!!

My card also was created for Outlawz Alcohol Markers Challenges, which is coincidentally a "Christmas in July" Challenge! Outlawz Friday's Coloring Challenges is now a coloring challenge! You can use alcohol markers, other markers, colored pencils, and any other coloring medium. The only requirement is that you color an open line image!

July's sponsor for the Outlawz Friday's Coloring Challenges is All Dressed Up. The prize is two digis of the winner's choice! There are some great digis, so be sure to check it out her shop, then play along with this week's challenge for a chance to win this prize!

Here's the card which uses Stampotique's Kitty Squad (Kira Nichols)


Kitty Squad was stamped with Tuxedo Black Memento ink and colored with Copic markers. Each kitty was fussy cut. The kitties were set aside while I created the rest of the card. Don't worry! They weren't lonely as they had each other for company!

White Metallic cardstock was die-cut with Nestabilities Circles dies by Spellbinders. The circles were then sponged with Adirondack and/or Distress inks. When you sponge dye inks onto white metallic cardstock, you end up with a lovely shimmery result. 

Silver metallic cardstock was die-cut with the ornament hanger part of a Christmas Ornament die-cut by Memory Box, which I won last year! Woo-hoo!  I used these silver ornament hanger to transform my circles into ball ornaments. The Delicate Chain die-cut by Memory Box was used to die-cut the silver metallic cardstock and adhered to the top of each ornament.

Patterned paper from older 6x6 pads by Basic Grey was layered to create the card front. The fussy-cut
Kitty Squad kitties were adhered to the ball ornaments, then adhered to the card using foam dimensional adhesive.

White metallic cardstock was die-cut with a Die-namics banner die. The banner was edged with Fired Brick Distress ink and glittery sticker letters were added to spell out the sentiment. As is the way with stickers, I ran out of red glittery "eeeeees", so I substituted silver glittery letters instead. The sentiment banner was adhered to the card front on foam dimensional adhesives.

Thanks for visiting today!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

SCACD This & That Rubber Stamp Blog Hop

Welcome to another fun showcase of newly released rubber stamps and a few new digital stamps from SCACD. You should have come from Susan's blog where you definitely saw something amazing!  If you get lost during the hop, visit Follow Your Heart, SCACD's Store Blog, which will send you along your way!

SCACD is releasing nine rubber stamps which are collectively called This and That Collection. SCACD Artist Carmen Medlin and Susana collaborated on these new images that were inspired by events in Susana's life and the imagery she loves. We think that Carmen did an amazing job bringing these to life!

The This and That Collection includes the Zen Beauties Collection as well as five eclectic and fun stamps. If you buy the complete set of the Zen Beauties Collection at one time, you will get an accompanying accessory maple seed stamp as a bonus stamp. They each can be purchased now by clicking HERE.
 
SCACD also decided to offer three of these new rubber stamps as digital stamps as well as rubber for her SCACD Digital fans. You can see the three newest digital stamps by clicking HERE

Our International Friends can find SCACD's new rubber stamps at Quixotic Paperie.

Now it's time to show you my projects and to share information about them.

Here's my first project, which uses Mr. Bones. Mr. Bones has a partner, who is named Mrs. Bones (who is also available as a digital stamp). If you buy them together, you will receive a sentiment that says "You're Invited!"

Mr. Bones was colored with Copic markers, then masked with a fussy-cut colorless version of himself. Mr. Bones and his colorless twin took a ride through my Big Shot inside a Nestabilities Labels die. They were kept inside the die and a piece of Washi tape was placed across his feet to act as a mask. A background was airbrushed around him. The tape was lifted, the background was covered with Post-It notes, and Old Paper Distress ink was sponged along the bottom to ground Mr. Bones. Bundled Sage Distress ink was sponged over a Burlap Layering Stencil. (It's gone now, but the remaining stencils by the Tim are on sale!). The mask was lifted and the stamped die-cut panel was set aside.

Patterned paper from the Necessities 6x6 pad by MME was layered over a rose-printed paper from an old MME pad. Burlap ribbon was adhered across the card front, then the stamped die-cut panel was adhered.

I grabbed some very old sticker letters and added the sentiment "Just for You!" I sponged Pumice Stone Distress ink over the sticker letters, then removed them, leaving their outline on the wood-patterned paper. Pumice Stone Distress ink was sponged over an arrow and a heart from the Arrows and Hearts stencil by The Crafter's Workshop.

A burlap ribbon bow with two red roses was added to finish the card.

My second card mixes the digital version of Steampunk Cupcake with the rubber stamped Party Lights Border

The Party Lights Border was stamped on Neenah cardstock using Tuxedo Black Memento ink. The Steampunk Cupcake was reduced using PhotoElements, then printed onto the stamped sheet of cardstock using my laser printer. I also isolated the pinwheel from the cupcake using PhotoElements, then printed it out onto another piece of cardstock. All the elements were colored with Copic markers. The lightbulbs' elements were colored with a Lemon Spica Glitter pen. A dotty background was added to the background with Copic markers. The second pinwheel was fussy-cut, edged with black marker, then adhered over it's counterpart using a tiny screw-topped brad. It really spins!!!

The pocket watch, rivets, and lightbulbs. Several layers of Clear Gelly Glaze pen was added to the light bulbs, the cupcakes rivets, and the cupcake's pocket watch. Oh! Please note that I had to trim the Party Lights Border to make it fit. It's wider irl.

Here's a close-up so you can see the glittery and the glazy bits.

The background patterned paper is from Club Scrap. It's rainbow colored in colors that matched the stamped piece. It was dry-embossed using a Gears embossing folder by Cuttlebug. Lightning Black Brilliance ink and Golden Glitz Delicata ink were lightly sponged over the raised pattern and used to edge the embossed patterned paper and the stamped panel. The patterned paper was matted with gold metallic cardstock and the stamped panel was adhered to the card front.

SCACD's Alice's Clock Statement Corner die was used to die-cut gold metallic cardstock three times. The intact corner was adhered to the lower right of the card. The Delicate Chain die by Memory Box was used to die-cut gold metallic paper, which was adhered along the left side of the image panel. Alice's Clock Statement Corner die-cut has two connected gears which were cut from the other two die-cuts, then adhered to the upper corners of the card. The Mini Gears die by Memory Box was used to die-cut silver and gold metallic paper. These small gears were adhered over and around the connected gears and onto Alice's Clock Statement Corner die-cut.

That's it for me today! Thanks for stopping by today. Your next stop on the hop is Kim Dellow's blog, where she is sure to wow you with her gorgeous artwork.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Blog Hop with a Difference/Getting to Know Me

This is going to be a completely different sort of blog post from me. I'm supposed to describe my creative process and inspiration and stuff like that. I usually go into excruciating detail about how I create my projects, so I likely will just babble on more about stuff like that!

I was "tagged" by my friend, Penny Mull, who blogs at 9 Hawks and a Dragonfly. If you're not familiar with her work or her blog, I urge you to stop reading this and go visit her blog right now. She's a really talented artist, colors beautifully, and her designs are truly unique. She layers die-cuts and other embellishments in way that never overpowers the focal image of her project. Penny also writes extremely well. Her warmth, sense of humor, and intellect color her writing and will most definitely make you smile. You'll also learn a lot about food, wine, and travel while reading her blog as those are passions of hers, plus you'll see some amazing photographs, as she's a wonderful photographer!

I'm supposed to answer some questions, so here goes...

1. What am I working on?
I'm frantically trying to catch up with design team and other miscellaneous projects that I had taken on before my mom got ill. Family trumps all, so my crafting has taken the hit.

I've got four or five different projects in various states of completion as I was able to color images while at my mom's house. Those images are slowly being put onto cards and tags.

Once my mother recovers, I will continue my experimentation with paints, texture products, and other media. 

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?
I think what sets my work apart from others is that my work is somewhat quirky and very eclectic. My style, for want of a different word, ranges from cute and whimsical to dark and edgy. The one constant is that whatever I create is clean, linear (I think that's my Virgo side showing!), and somewhat detailed and techniquey (new word)

I try to dabble in different styles but can't do CAS or elegant.

3. Why do I write/create what I do?
Concentrating on artwork keeps me calm and centered. Without art, I tend to be a bit anxious and very scatter-minded.

Inspiration is everywhere. I can be driving along and wonder which Copic colors will match the colors of the sky! The shapes in clouds will make me think of what dies, stamps, or stencils would work to mimic them. A tree's reflection in a pond will set me thinking of ways to reproduce what I see using paints. Similarly, reading magazines and watching television can inspire me to try to change up my usual color palette and try different color combinations and/or designs!

I'm not sure why, but the edgier side of life appeals to me (probably because my background is middle class and my life is one of comfort). Graffiti, tattoo art, old decaying buildings hold a certain beauty. Imagery from mythology and non Judeo-Christian religions is fascinating. On the other hand, whimsical, cute images make me smile and I love, Love, LOVE cats and penguins. My stamp collection and therefore my artwork reflect my taste.

Irony and word play delight me. IMHO laughter is such an important part of life, so humor tends to find its way into my artwork, sometimes unintentionally.

The last reason why I create what I create is that excitement factor. There's nothing like the rush I feel when a completed project reflects what's in my mind's eye or when something takes a left turn (at Albuquerque) and comes out completely different, yet better than the original intention.

Oh. I should probably mention that I started paper crafting as a scrapbooker on June 27, 2000. I was combining desktop publishing with photo prints and cardstock. Yep. I did hybrid scrapbooking before it was popular. Such a trend setter. In September 2000 we were hooked up to the internet. Someone had told me that inkjet ink would kill my photos, so I started to research that. And found a site called Scraptalk, where I learned about cardstock, nice patterned paper, punches, die-cuts, stamps, and a little thing called internet shopping. My scrapping and bank account have never recovered.

In July 2001 I got curious about stamping in scrapbooks and attended a Stampin' Up party, vowing to just look, learn, and NOT buy. You all know how that worked out.

Somewhere in there, I realized that all these paper scraps that I was amassing could be used for cards and tags and started to make those. Big fun! Small projects that didn't have to be perfect for a photo and posterity! And I could play around and experiment without hurting a photo. Even better!

I applied for my first design team for a kit club and was accepted. Several teams, a few publications, and suchlike followed. I started designing for a company that wanted projects mailed to them. I didn't want to do that with scrapbook pages, so I started to create more cards, home decor items, decorated boxes, clipboards, and notebooks.

No one ever looks at the scrapbooks I completed. I have a gazillion and two layouts in boxes that need to go into albums that would be looked at by no one. So these days, I'm primarily a card maker, who dabbles in home decor items, decorated boxes, notebooks, clipboards, and journal pages. My journal pages do not contain my thoughts. Those stay in my head where they belong. After all, I am a Virgo.

Did I answer the question? I dunno.

4. How does my writing/creating process work?
Does it? Ha!

It depends. If it's design team or contracted work, it starts with the product and/or challenge. In most cases these days, it start with the stamp or stamps I'd like to use. I'll usually stamp the image, then choose the color palette based upon the patterned paper that will work with the image. Most often I'll color with Copic markers because I consistently get good results with them and because I need to justify the huge expense of amassing my Copic marker and reinker collection. *grin*

I'll decide whether I want to create a background behind the focal image or want to plop it into another background. I'll either fussy-cut the image, color a background behind it, or mask the image and create background with markers, paints, chalks, stencils, texture paste, or whatever I'm in the mood to use.

Then I'll decide whether I want to use die-cuts, embossing plates, and use those. After all, those need to be economically justified as well.

I'll use gemstones, ribbons, lace, metals, and/or flowers (premade, die-cut, punched) for embellishments. That's usually the last step as I'm not real good about using them and have a tendency to place and remove them repeatedly.

If the product I'm to showcase is paint, I'll use try to use it in a variety of ways in one project so that I can show its versatility.

Sometimes I just create because I have an idea that must get out of my head before I can move on to another project. Yes. I know it sounds certifiable. Sadly it's true.

Other times I just want to play and experiment with a product or media. I've been doing quite a bit of that in the last year or so as I've slid into mixed media. I'm still midway up the base of the learning curve with acrylics and the different texture media you can use with them (pastes, crackle stuff, gels, etc.) There are so many different kinds and so many different ways to use them that I just play around and see what happens. Sometimes it works. Other times it doesn't. I learn either way. After all, that and the Hokey Pokey are what it's all about.

I'll share some favorite old layouts and some newer stuff just for giggles.


 from 2002
 
from 2007


2008
2012























SCACD
SCACD















Stampotique
Bombshell















I am also supposed to tag three women whose work I greatly admire and who I am honored to call friends. I have known them for various amounts of time. I've never met any of them face to face, but know I can rely upon them for a pep talk if I need one.

They will be sharing more about themselves next Monday, July 28th. I can't wait to learn more about them!

I am tagging:
•  Alaine Medio, who blogs at MissAlaineous' Mosaics. I've know Alaine for several years now as we're teammates at Bombshell Stamps and SCACD.  Alaine is a wonderful artist, with fabulous design skills. Alaine excels at coloring with her Copic markers. I've learned so much from just looking at her artwork. Alaine works full time, travels extensively on business, yet still manages to grow and evolve artistically.

•  Corinne Rollet, aka Coco, who blogs at Les Folies de Coco. I haven't known Corinne very long. We met online when we admired each others' Stampotique projects. We started emailing a bit and became friends. Corinne continually inspires me with her wonderful mixed media artwork that is filled with color, texture, and whimsy.

• Nicole Maki, aka PerkyNihilist, who blogs at Made by Nicole. I've known Nicole since 2008ish when she joined justjohanna/Odd Bird Planet's design team. Nicole is a flat-out amazing woman. I want to be her when I grow up. She's got three boys who she has homeschooled. She cooks, bakes, sews, stamps, paints, keeps her house decluttered, and makes wonderful artwork. I'm lucky enough to have a Nicole-original print that I keep in my craftroom. Her artwork, primarily her painted mixed media work, is most of the reason I started my journey in mixed media.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Curiouser and Curiouser

Things continue to be hectic in my life as I've been away from home for two or three days per week. I'm still playing "catch up" with my projects, putting images that were previously colored onto cards and what not.

Here's a card featuring The Hatter, which is a SCACD digi.

  

The Hatter was resized in PhotoElements and printed onto Neenah cardstock using my laser printer. He was colored with Copic and ShinHanArt Touch Twin Brush  markers. His goggles, the clock on his hat, and the pocketwatch were coated with several layers of Clear Gelly Glaze pen to make 'em dimensional and shiny.

Teal cardstock was die-cut with a Die-namics frame die. Clock hands from a Spellbinders die set were used to die-cut ultramarine cardstock. Memory Box's  Mini Gears die set was used to die-cut gold metallic cardstock, which were added to the top corners.  A Gold Krylon pen was used to change the color of very old, but very useful, hanger brads, then the brads were stabbed through the cardstock in the lower corners. At that point, I discovered that I did NOT have small gold jump rings, though I had huge ones and small ones in silver, black, pewter, and hot pink. I also did not have a gold chain. Therefore, I put this part aside and worked on the rest of the card. 

Two pieces of teal floral 6x6 cardstock from the French Country Graphic 45 6x6 pad were adhered together. The Gearworks Border* die by Memory Box was used to die-cut gold metallic cardstock and more mini gears from Memory Box's  Mini Gears die set were die-cut. The gears were adhered to a strip of teal cardstock and layered atop the floral cardstock. *The Gearworks Border die is no longer available, but the Antique Gear set or the Deluxe Gear set would work equally well. I have not yet acquired those yet, but I will. *grin* 

The Timepiece die set by Die-Namics was used to die-cut both metallic gold and ultramarine cardstock. The die-cuts were added to the center of the card front. 

First thing today (after coffee), I ran to Michael's and picked up gold jump rings and a gold chain. Then I hurried home and finished the card with the chain and three charms from my stash.

Thanks for visiting today!

I shall enter this card in the following challenges:

Friday, July 18, 2014

Color Challenge!

Outlawz Alcohol Markers Challenges is now Outlawz Friday's Coloring Challenges. You can use alcohol markers, other markers, colored pencils, and any other coloring medium. The only requirement is that you color an open line image!

July's sponsor for the Outlawz Friday's Coloring Challenges is All Dressed Up. The prize is two digis of the winner's choice! There are some great digis, so be sure to check it out her shop, then play along with this week's challenge for a chance to win this prize!

Our challenge this week is a color challenge with a palette from Design Seeds


Here's the palette: 

Here's my project using the Tranquility set by Chocolate Baroque.

The female Buddha and the stone plinth from this set were stamped using Tuxedo Black Memento ink and colored with Copic markers. I wanted the female Buddha to look like a jade statue. I hope I succeeded! I think next time I'll fussy-cut it and add some form of crackle medium to make it look crackly.

The plinths were fussy-cut. Clear glassine (from the Post Office) was used to back the lantern part. An old water-drop punch was used to die-cut white vellum, which was colored with a yellow Copic marker. 

Believe it or not, the colors (blues, green, and reds) really do match the print-out of this palette. The plinths photographed very purplish. The photo was taken around noon, so I don't understand why the color is so far off. Perhaps it's the photographer.

I used the Cabinet Card Alterations die to die-cut grayish-white cardstock, then the die-cut took a ride through my Big Kick inside a Spellbinders Brick embossing folder. I used a Prismacolor pencil and a Prismacolor Colorless Blender marker to add the mortar. Of course, the freakin' pencil's lead broke several times, which was irritating. 

The Buddha scene was framed with the die-cut, embossed, colored cardstock and mounted onto a gray card. A teensy dragonfly punch from G Studios (found at AC Moore) was used to punch white cardstock. The dragonfly punchies were colored with Copic markers and Iridescent Medium by Winsor Newton was painted over them to make them sparkly. They were added to the scene to finish the card.

Thanks for visiting today!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Inspired by a favorite book!

France Papillon Charles is hosting the Stampotique Designers Challenge this week and her challenge is to create a project inspired by your favorite book.

Here's what she had to say about her challenge!
"Hi! My name is France and I'm a bookworm. No doubt there are a lot of other bookworms among our lovely Stampotiquers.
I would like to know about your favorite books. So my challenge for you, should you accept it, is to create a piece, inspired by your favorite book. Let the story, the title, the cover, a quote inspire you!
Now you might have a problem choosing your all time favorite book, don't worry, it's not like you are writing it in stone, just pick one. Or maybe your problem is that you don't like reading at all. Here is how to cheat: go for your favorite film based on a book, we won't tell ;))) "
If you'd like the chance to win $30 worth of Stampotique stamps, you should play along. Visit Stampotique Designers Challenge blog and be sure to read the rules, so that you'll have the chance to win a great prize!!!

I was surprised to find that this was a difficult challenge for me. As an avid reader, I don't have a single favorite book. I have several favorite authors, then within each author, I may have a  favorite book, so I was having a hard time choosing!

However, one of my favorite books of all time is The Places You'll Go by Dr. Seuss. So I found a quote sequence that applied and printed it out.


Find Your Balance (Linda Peterson) was stamped using Tuxedo Black Memento ink onto Neenah cardstock and onto Eclipse Masking Tape. The image was colored with Copic markers, the Eclipse Tape version was fussy-cut, the adhered over the image as a mask. Two of the quails from the Quails Cube were stamped with colored Memento ink over the masked Find Your Balance image.

Birdy Bonnets, Wee Owl , Rooty Toot, and Birdy Shoes were stamped with colored Memento ink, then all the remaining images were colored with Copic markers. Several layers of Clear Gelly Glaze pen were added to all the birds' eyes, beaks, and talons. Clear Spica Copic Glitter pen was added to the crown, then a few layers of Clear Gelly Glaze pen were added to it.

Grass and sky were added to the scene using Copic markers. Rubbing alcohol was applied to a gauze bandage, then the sky was dabbed with the alcohol dampened bandage to mottle the sky a bit.

My beloved Black Soot Distress ink was used to edge the stamped scene, which was then matted with gray cardstock.

Ancient patterned papers from Keeping Memories Alive were edged with Black Soot Distress ink, then layered. The quote print outs from The Places You'll Go were edged with Black Soot Distress ink, then adhered to the card front. Quote marks, die-cut using an old QuicKutz font, were added to finish the card.

Thanks for visiting!


Friday, July 11, 2014

A Watery Hello

Outlawz Alcohol Markers Challenges is now Outlawz Friday's Coloring Challenges. You can use alcohol markers, other markers, colored pencils, and any other coloring medium. The only requirement is that you color an open line image!

July's sponsor for the Outlawz Friday's Coloring Challenges is All Dressed Up. The prize is two digis of the winner's choice! There are some great digis, so be sure to check it out her shop, then play along with this week's challenge for a chance to win this prize!

Our challenge this week is "Beach or Pool"! Being me, I put my own spin on it and interpreted this theme as "water".

Here's my card using one of SCACD's digital stamps, Steampunk Siren.



Steampunk Siren was resized using PhotoElements and printed out onto Neenah cardstock using my laser printer. I recently acquired Polychromos colored pencils and have been experimenting with them. This is my first "person". I'm not totally thrilled with the way it came out, but do like the pencils much better than Prismacolors, which were constantly breaking and wouldn't hold a point. I used Goo-gone as a blending agent, but also blended by layering color.

Here's a close-up to show the colored Steampunk Siren.  The photo was taken at dusk and is slightly out of focus. Additionally, I had not yet colored the bubbles or her nails.

Palette chalks were used to create the background around Steampunk Siren, but then I had a "Eureeka" moment and decided to put her behind vellum to give her a real underwater vibe.  I used a Nestabilities die to die-cut a frame from a sheet of wave-patterned paper from the Maritime 6x6 pad by 7 Gypsies. The outside edges were slightly distressed using the edge of a scissor blade. The frame was layered over vellum which adhered to the image panel. A strip of compass-patterned paper from the same pad was added to the bottom, then the whole thing was matted with teal textured cardstock. 

Delicate Chain die by Memory Box was used to die-cut copper metallic cardstock, then adhered to a strip of teal cardstock that was die-cut with a Die-namics border die, from one of their Blueprints set. This was adhered over the seam between the patterned papers. The stamped panel was adhered to a kraft 5x7 card.

SCACD's Contempo Compass Statement Corner die was used to die-cut teal cardstock. The Gearworks Border die by Memory Box was used to die-cut copper metallic cardstock, then one of the gears was cut out and adhered over the star in Contempo Compass Statement Corner.  The Mini Gears die by Memory Box was used to die-cut copper metallic and teal cardstock. One of the teal gears was layered onto the gear in the corner. The embellished corner die-cut was adhered to the upper left hand side.

A banner die by Die-Namics was used to die-cut teal cardstock. A word die, "Hello", by Elizabeth Craft was used to die-cut copper metallic cardstock, then adhered to the banner. Two of the small copper gears was added to the banner. A small clamshell punch was used to punch copper cardstock and the punched shell was detailed, then added to the banner. The banner was adhered to the lower right hand side of the card.

Thanks for visiting today!

I shall enter this card in the following challenges:
Moxie Fab World's Wonderful Words Dies Challenge. 
Cut It Up Challenge #49: Under the Sea
Crafting by Design: Use Die-cuts
Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenges: Let's Be Clear
Digi Choosday Challenges: Punches and/or Die-cuts