Saturday, February 27, 2010

They say its your birthday!

The Beatles are here to sing me a birthday song.  You are welcome to come dance along with me. Yes today is my birthday. Lets dance around the room and sing too. Life is for celebrating and I plan on doing plenty of it today.

I am having a wonderful day so far.  We went out to breakfast and I had French Pancakes with Strawberries and whip cream.  Yummmm.

I opened my card this morning and what I call a fake present.  Dearest Dave gave me a faucet.  I said that can't be my present it breaks the rules.  Early on I said no vacuums or irons or appliances as birthday gifts.  So then he bought out the real present.  Photoshop Elements for the Mac.  I have been wanting this since I got the new computer back in October. I had been using the trial version this month and it has just about expired so this was perfect timing. I started working on a banner and it is taking longer than I had expected.

This afternoon I am going to work on Art in the studio and this evening I am going out to dinner at Johnny Carino's with 14 friends.  It will be fun to be spending my birthday with such good friends. Thanks to all of you who have sent me birthday greetings, you are making the day perfect.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Art Cards

I am happy to announce that I have added greeting cards to my etsy shoppe.  I have been working on this all week and really am amazed how long it has taken.  There really is a lot involved in getting something like this ready to sell.  The cards are handmade with white cardstock and photos I had printed at a photo developer.  This is one example but there are several more in the shoppe.

I got some bad news today that I find it hard to believe.  My beloved craft store Roberts which has been here since before I moved here seventeen years ago is closing. Its a corporate decision to downsize by closing 3 of their stores, 2 in Utah and one here in Idaho.  The only good thing is they may have some great sales in the next two months.  This is the store that feels like home to me, I know most of the clerks and feel very sorry that they'll be losing their jobs.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Wishcasting Wednesday - Permissison

Its Wishcasting Wednesday and Jamie asks that will fill out this permission slip.

I, Kate wish to give myself permission to be successful as an Artist. This success will include both personal satisfaction and monetary compensation.

I have been dealing with the gremlins this week as I work on a project to further expand my work out in the world. So today I tell them to go bother someone else on second thought not. I don't wish that on anyone. Instead I tell them to go back to the land of gremlins where they can play amongst themselves.

I will be successful, my creative ideas will grow I will be able to bring them to the world easily and effortlessly. That is my wish for today.  To see other wishes or join in this exercise go here

 Another Wish - for a friend

Remember the pen pals of old, where you actually wrote to a person a letter and mailed it.  Well I have a friend who wishes to do this and she asked if I would put a note on my blog to see if anyone out there in blogland would be interested in a correspondence.  My friend is an Art journaler, crafter, knitter etc.  If the idea interests you just leave a comment with contact info and I will email you more information.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

I am obsessed with the Forgotten Garden

I have been obsessed with this book, maybe thats a strong word. Delighted might be a better word, all I know is the author has me in its grips. This is what I want to feel when I pick up a book, engaging characters, a mystery surrounding them, good setting a good story and more. It doesn't happen that often. If you like a good read check it out.

Its set in Australia and Cornwall and surrounds a 4 year old girl found on the docks in Australia, she is adopted by the man who finds her. She grows up and when she is told at 18 about this it drastically changes her life. She feels lost not knowing who she is. She never does find out and the task falls to her granddaughter. I love how the author gives you just a little bit in each time frame to get you interested and eager to know how it ends. I have another two hundred pages before I really find that out. I love being excited about something I am reading.

I have been working on a project in the studio but have nothing to share yet.  I have been getting some wonderful postcards from the DIY postcard swap and as soon as I get them all I will post pictures.

I hosted game night on Friday. Here is Arnie, he was first to arrive and grabbed the plate of chocolate chip cookies I was making. The plate was empty in no time. Luckily it was just the first batch.

Here are Kayla and Amanda Arnie's daughters and that's Tim in the background.  Everyone is all smiles they must be having fun.

This is Kristin with her new boyfriend Kelly. Tim is her dad. She grew up with Sarah. It was good to see her and meet Kelly too.

Jacque and a new gamer Sarah were just cracking up as we played a new game.

Even Jacque's son was enjoying himself. I like how on game night you can have a group of people of all ages and they all get along and have fun together.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Working on the Artshine Sketchbooks

I have been working on my pages for two of the books in the Artshine Traveling Sketchbook. This has been such a satisfying experience.

These are my pages for Suki's book. Her book didn't have a theme but what I know of her is that she likes nature and she is a poet.  I was attracted to this picture and its serenity. I started with watercolor paper and added the image and then added black watercolor pencil to the background and then a some water to extend the color of the photo. I then stamped on top of it with a scroll stamp. I was going to add some words but decided to leave interpretation to the viewer.

For the back I chose a poem by Mary Oliver. First I added a watercolor wash of blues and greens using paints this time and then wrote the poem on top of it. Then I stamped on the little dragonfly's. I really like the words in this poem.

Next I started work on Lynn's pages.  I know that Lynn is an amazing quilter so I started my page by making fabric paper using strips of batik fabrics sewn onto some bristol paper. The I added the image and and several ribbons and then I got stuck. I love images of paths and doorways so then I added these words which seem to symbolize what the image means to me.

For the back of the page I took a piece of watercolor that I had painted previously. I added some images a little stamping and some words. I liked the calm look of this woman and she seemed to fit really well on the colored background.

I really like how these pages turned out. I am really loving working on these lovely  artists books.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Lambs in Sweaters

On Tuesday I fell on the ice and hurt my left arm so I have not been doing much but reading and nursing my arm with a heating pad. It is just an extremely sore muscle not broken or anything like that.

My friend Kate sent me this link this morning and these lambs are so cute I had to share

I have been totally engrossed in the Olympics. I really like the short track and the half pipe. My two favorites Apolo Anton Ono and Shaun White have done very well. I am am just amazed watching Shaun he does such amazing things on his board and he is such a like able person. Watching the woman's downhill was hard, seeing all those women crashing at speeds over 70 mph I can not imagine what that felt like. It was nice seeing Lindsay Von win after all the injuries she has had to endure. Love that fighting spirit. It was great to see Canada awarded some gold medals on their home turf at last. I am a sucker for all the stories, the triumphs that these athletes overcome. It is so inspiring.

The Sun is showing itself today and the skies are a beautiful clear blue, I have to take advantage of that so I am off to take FLynn for a walk.

Have an Art filled day.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Bride Wore Black

Os Saturday night I attended a Mystery Dinner Party. It was the Wedding Reception of Becky Giovanni and Stanley Simpson. I was the bride and I was the victim, I think I had a wonderful death scene.

and yes I wore black since I couldn't find a white dress at a thrift store I made do with what I had. You can see I wore my tiara which is sort of bride like. I was the daughter of a mobster so there was some underlying tension. Here I am with the wedding cake.

The dinner table all ready for the wedding party. I thought the organizers did a wonderful job. It was put on by my church as a fundraiser. Fun was had by all. When you attend one of these mysteries you are assigned a role and have a part to play and during dinner all the participants work at figuring out who the murderer is.

My friend Elizabeth who played Mrs. Simpson my mother in law, she was trying to sell everyone insurance. I wonder if she had an ulterior motive.

This was Harry Hitt now with a name like that what do you think his occupation is?

My friend Sue came as Stacy Sultry, cousin of the bride. She resents me because I broke up her romance.

Tom played the groom Stanley Simpson, the love of my life.

Then we have the murderer Brutus Simpson, my brother-in-law and my husband in real life. Yes I was murdered by my own husband at least he got it out of his system.

If you ever get the chance to attend one of these don't hesitate since they are a lot of fun.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

GPP Street Team #37 Love Letters

Its GPP Street Team time again. This time Michelle has us working with letters, mainly X and O.  I thought it would be appropriate to post this on Valentines Day so here I am with my pages using the Letters O X. 

This first one I had spray painted the background, its on very thin paper bag that had been sewed into my paper bag journal. I stenciled the letters and then outlined them in white gel pen.

This second one I really had fun with.  I tried using the Ranger Color Wash inks that I have had for some time.  I never really liked them before but this time I had so much fun using them.  I headed to my local craft store for more colors but they no longer carry them.  I hate when that happens.  Now I will have to go online to get some more. I also stenciled stars on this page too and then outlined some of the letters with gel pen.

On this page I also used the Color Wash inks and several layers of stamping and then I added letters using both stencils and stamps. The image is a greeting card and the words  are 'We are the night ocean filled with glints of light' by Rumi.  

I really enjoyed this challenge, it gave me the opportunity to try some new things that I might not have otherwise.  You still have a couple weeks perhaps this is the month you join in with the rest of the GPP Street Team. You can see other entry's here.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Our new second home

We picked up this today. We actually purchased it at a RV show last week. We took our old trailer in today and picked up this one. Its a 21 ft trailer 3 feet longer than are old one and much nicer. This one has air conditioning, a microwave, a built in CD player and radio and a bed that you don't have to take down everyday. I think it will work very nice for us.  Now I can't wait till summer.

This is a look at the interior, the side actually moves out so this area will look bigger then.

I started this age eons ago. I glues down this Mariners compass paper and then it sat. Then came the title and image. She was a magazine image that I painted over. I was disappointed that I did not make her more different than the original. This is what I had started with.

As you can see I changed the hair and the outfit a little but it still looks the same.  I guess I will try it again sometime and really work at making it different.  its funny how I thought I had been doing that until I looked at the original.

In this one I tried an experiment. I had all these little spirals and curly-q's that are remnants from some of the things I cut out with the Cricut. Instead of tossing them I decided to try and add them to a background page as texture. First I glued them down all over the page and then added gesso over it. Then I did my usual work of adding paper and stamping and more. I really like the effect of this. It was only done on the left page of this two page spread.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Wishcasting Wednesday - Travel

I thought I would play along with Jamie Ridler today. Its Wishcasting Wednesday:This week Jamie asks "Where do you wish to travel?"

Well I love to travel anywhere but the first thought was Ireland. I want to visit Carrick on Shannon. It is where my Grandparents lived before they immigrated to the US in the early 1900's. I have their love letters and want to write a book about them so a trip to where it all started would be wonderful.

You can see what others wish today here

Where do you wish to travel? Why don't you join in with this exercise today.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Kreativ Blog award

My dear friend Olivia awarded me with the Kreativ Blogger award, thanks Olivia your friendship means the world to me. I am honored to receive this award.

So for part of this award I need to share 7 things you may not know about me. I've done this so many times that its hard to find things but I will give it a whirl.

1. In college I majored in Political Science although I wanted to major in Art. I was not one of those kids who drew all the time as a child. When I drew a picture it took me a long time to finish. I thought that made me not artist material so I didn't follow my dream. That was a big mistake.

2. I have written in journals on and off since I was a kid and didn't discover that I wanted to be a writer until I was in my late thirties. I spent the next 15 years reading about writing instead of getting down to actually doing it.

3. I like to have lots of time alone and at the same time I like to have lots of social interaction and activities.

4. When I was 21 I had friends who lived in a college town and they were renting a big house that had some extra rooms, they convinced me to move out of my parents house to a place 2.5 hours away. I never came back.

5. I lived for a year in Michigan's Upper Peninsula in  Houghton where it snows more than 300 inches a year. Since then I gauge winter in comparison to the one I spent where it really snows.

6. I love being by the ocean and its strange that I have never lived by one. I have seen both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. I wonder if its my Irish heritage that has me longing for the sea of my ancestors.

7. I really enjoy cooking when I am making desserts. I like to make cobblers. A favorite is to mix peach and blueberries together. So yummy.

Lastly, for the Kreativ Blogger award, you must pass it on to seven other bloggers.  I wanted to choose people that I have not chosen before. They are all women who inspire me in many ways. Here are the rules for the seven recipients:

1. Thank the person giving the award.
2. Copy the award to your blog.
3. Place a link to their blog.
4. Name seven things people don't know about you.
5. Nominate seven other bloggers who you admire.
6. Place a link to these bloggers.
7. Leave a comment on their blog notifying them of the award.

Gemma's Daybook    
My friend Linda at is one of the blogger on the list who I have met in person.  Her blog is full of creativity personal insight and wonderful art.

Dragonfly Reflections  I met Kelley when I attended the Writer's Spa in Taos, NM.  We were roommates and were delighted to find out we were both Art Journalers. Kelley's blog is honest and pure and full of wonderful ideas and art.

Everyday Possibilities 
Sherry is such a kind soul, I found her blog through Kim, the Queen of Arts. I love Sherry's art and her commitments to a better life.

Just Me and My Art  Jane is one of my glitter sister. We share a common art bond and have taken many classes together. I consider her my art sister.  In her blog Janet shares her daily journal pages and her journey as an artist. You'll be inspired if you visit her.

daisy yellow  
Tammy is from Texas and oh her blog is amazing. SHe does these incredible mandala's and many other wonderful tutorials and creative ideas.  I am always inspired when I visit her blog.  Its a riot of color.

Hanna is a an amazing creative artist from Sweden.  Currently hosting a post card swap.  She has some fantastic tutorials on her blog and always inpires me.

Art by Serena Serena I met when I did The Artist Way online.  She's from Australia and shares her life an art. She does beautiful drawings in her journal pages.  I wish I could draw so well.

Visit these ladies whenever you can, you will not be disappointed.
Have a creative day everyone

Monday, February 8, 2010

Drawing again

I have wanted to get back to doing some drawing in my moleskine sketchbook. I have been taking it to church again and sketching during the service. I find it relaxing and it really helps me to pay attention if I am doing something. I am not sure why I am drawing hats, it just seemed to turn out that way.

I drew this from a magazine image, I really like the woman in the picture although I really didn't capture her essence but still it was a good exercise in drawing.

This actually was a drawing from a magazine. I want to learn how to do poses and this was my first try at that. I added the tree and the feet and I know both feet wouldn't be going in that direction but I couldn't seem to figure out how to do it.  Perhaps next time.  I want to do this again.  I like to practice this way before I actually try doing this with real subjects.  The pictures don't move on you like real people do.

If there is some new technique you want to try I suggest you learn by trying what others have done. They seem to be my teachers of late.

Have an Art filled day.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Using the Cricut for Crafts and Art Journaling

As I said previously I have been taking a class on using the Cricut.  Most of it has been basic but I have learned some new things.  My goals have been to find ways to use the machine beyond it original intent which I think is for people making scrapbook pages and greeting cards and other craft items.  Sure I will do a little of that but I wanted  more.  Initially I thought I would use it for mostly words for my art journal pages but I am finding other uses now which I think is pretty neat.

Here is a card and tag that we made in the first class.  Very cutsey for Valentines Day.

I made these two cards, the argyle and cupcake ones.  I have a cartridge called Wild Card which has some really fun cards in it. The little box I made and decorated with hearts.  You could put a small amount of candy inside.

These flowers were made by using an ink cartridge with the Cricuit.  First you draw the flower and then change back to the blade and then cut the flower out.  The result is your image is then outlined in the color of the ink. I think I will use the flowers to embellish a journal page.

The other thing we learned was how to use the Cricut for glass etching.  First you cut out an image on vinyl and place the background left over on your piece of glass.  Its like a stencil. Then you add etching solution, wait 60 seconds and wash it off.  Then you remove the background image and your etched image appears.  You may have to click on the image to see the little vine I had etched on there.

This is the piece I placed on to the glass before adding the etching solution.

I took the cut out vinyl piece and put it on my Cricut to decorate it.

and here is the etched glass.

This is a scroll pattern that I cut out full size I am going to use it as a stencil for spray painting.

and this one is another stencil.

and another one I just couldn't stop the ideas from coming.  I can't wait till the weather is warm and I can try these out.

These are a series of things I have cut out to use as stencils and masks.  Don't they all look fun.  These were cut from a cartridge called Storybook.

Here are the stamps I made. I put them on acrylic blocks to use them. These will also be used on backgrounds.  I found that its hard to cut intricate things with the stamp material but these came out fine.

The one thing I have not tried yet is cutting fabric.  You need to iron it on to a paper backing and then you can put it through the machine. It can then be used to applique on a quilt or tote bag or whatever else you can think of. I am having a lot of fun exploring ways to use this machine.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Art supply Bonanza

I was out shopping today and stopped at Michaels and got all these.  Th good news is that the prices were incredible.  The bad news it looks like they are fazing out their Golden line so after its gone I will have to buy online.  The jars of paint were 1.99 and 4.99 and they usually go for around 20.00 or more.  I got the gesso and gel medium for 7.99 which is also incredible as it is usually 21.99.  I am stocking up on colors I use.

When I was at the other stores I picked up a few pieces of paper, some fabric for a tote bag and the deep cut blade for the Cricut.  I am going to try making some stamps this weekend.  I will show my results hopefully tomorrow or the next day.  In fact I was going to show the things we are making in the class I am taking but I think that I will wait and do them all together. I hope you are having an Art filled day.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Finishing Up

Here are the final exercises that I wanted to complete from the class I took from Misty back in December.

In this one we were to do 4 different poses on the same page. It was an interesting exercise to say the least. I kept getting paint on ones I had finished. I get pretty messy when I am painting. It is sort of funny that you really don't see the big flaws in your work till you see a picture of it.  I am happy that these are all finished now.  I am ready to move on to other things for awhile.

I signed up tp take a class for the Cricut cutter at my local craft store.  Today was the second class out of 4.  The more I use this machine the more versatile I discover it is.  Today we learned how to etch a pattern on to glass.  First we cut out a pattern in vinyl and then used the negative image on a piece of glass and then added the etching material and transferred it to the glass.  It was really simple. I also discovered besides using vinyl for lettering and etching, I ended up taking the image and putting it right on the cricut as a decoration.  You can also make your own stamps and magnets and stencils.  I think it will take awhile to run out of things to use this machine for. Tomorrow I'll show some of the things we have made so far.

Monday, February 1, 2010

My Etsy Shop is Officially Open

It's announcement time. My Etsy shoppe is now a reality. You can find me here

I only have a few things in in the shoppe but it a beginning. I hope to expand on it in the next few months. I have ideas galore in this head of mine, so now I just need to start putting them in action. Its fun to have an exiting adventure to embark on.