Thursday, December 30, 2010

Sharpie Scarves

My sister Marianne has been visiting for the holidays. Here we are and she is wearing the scarf she dyed.

This is my scarf, the colors are really better in person. We dyed these using the technique described by my friend Sioux here. Its basically done with sharpie markers and rubbing alcohol. The scarves were silk ones from dharma trading company. It was a lot of fun to do.

Marianne has been making an art journal, filling it in with backgrounds the past couple days. I finally got some time of my own in the studio today to make this page.  I started in my altered book journal by laying down watercolor crayons, added images and highlighted with charcoal before I added the year and some journaling.  This was a fun little page and it was great to be working in the journal again.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Fascinating Work

 Its one of those wonderful quite mornings.  Dave has gone to work and my sister who is visiting and my daughter are still asleep. The only sounds are the the hum of the heater and a little wind outside. So pleasant that I just want to capture this moment and revel in it all day.  Soon the bubble will burst and all will change but for this moment I feel contentment and peace.

I found a most interesting thing on a blog I read that I wanted to share with you. Annekata talks about two artists who blend old photos with contemporary settings.  Some of the images are quite haunting.  Check her site out here

Friday, December 24, 2010

Bird Garland Part 2

I have one last craft to show before Christmas.  I finished the bird garland this morning. Some of the birds had their wings glued on.  I found that worked easier and it looks better too.

Here it is all stretched out on my fireplace mantle. I think it turned out so cute.

A little closer look at the birdies.

and even closer.  I added beads between the birds that
ended up nose to nose.

Here they are on my Christmas Tree, I think they look great here.

and another shot of them on the tree.  Now I think I need to 
make another string, but maybe next year.

I wish all of you a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays for those other holidays you may be celebrating.  Thanks to all of you who take time to read my blog, leave comments, support me and share so much of your lives with me.  You are really a blessing in my life. 

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

A few things

This is what I made this morning.  I have this pattern from Amy Butler for 3 sized bags. This one is the makeup bag. I think it turned out pretty good. I may have to make some more of these I think they would make great gifts.

This is a double page spread for the creative challenge on my ning site. The idea was memories and the holidays.

I started the pages using Christmas wrapping paper as backgrounds. I cut up other wrapping paper as collage items. The pic on the top left is of myself on the left and my sister Peggy on the right. I think I am 15 or 16 here which would make her 11. We always liked making cookies and decorating them. The lower pic is of Sarah, she was such a beautiful child, still is by the way. The pic on the right is my sister Marianne, we were making decorated Christmas trees with Peggy's boys. Then I wrote a little poem about the experience and added words that represented Christmas memories to me. It was fun to do.

This is a journal page with a few ladies who just popped out of the background. I was doing some experimenting with Color Wash sprays and stamping in the background. I really didn't see anything in the background until I turned the journal sideways. I have concluded that with found art you often have to look at the page all sorts of ways and several times before you can see anything.

I am still making birdies soon I will have enough so they can all fly together.

Oh I almost forgot I colored this today. Its one of Eden's drawings from Draw Doodle and Decorate. You can get your own to color here I decided to do him in non traditional colors, he was lots of fun. I have this set of 100 markers that I rarely use. This was a great opportunity to try them out.

Monday, December 20, 2010

A Bird Garland Tutorial

I have wanted to make a bird garland after I saw this  post.  Laini Taylor made this beautiful bird garland and I just never took the time to make my own.  In fact I am still working on it but thought I would post it in progress so you can start your own if you want to.

 First I drew a simple bird shape and traced it onto felt and  
cut it out.

Then I drew a pattern for a wing and cut them out in cotton fabrics.  
This is a great way to use up all those small fabric scraps.

then I cut out many more birds and wings, before I knew it
I had over twenty birds, so it was time to stop and put them together.

I had this box of vintage floss given to me by a local lady 
when I worked on the Thread Project.  I did a blog about it back in 
2005, you can see that here if you are interested. I have been saving 
it all this time and decided now was a great time to use it. The lady 
who gave it to me said it had been purchased by her mother back 
in the 1930's.  I think it was time it got used.

Then I needed something for the birds eyes so I went through my 
stash of buttons and picked out the smallest one.

I sewed on the eyes and then stitched the birds together 
using a blanket stitch and embroidery floss and stuffed them
with some Polyfil.

Here is a closeup of one of the birds.  I have several more to make before I stitch them together into a garland.  Stay tuned and I promise a pic of the finished garland.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Is it already Friday

I just realized that it is Friday already, where did the week go. I haven't blogged since Sunday and that is a long time for me to go without. When I realized this yesterday I thought oh I need to finish that journal page I have been working on so I have something to post but alas I never even got into the studio yesterday. I haven't even read blogs for the past couple days.  Is this how it goes with all of you too.   Oh I have been working on things but they are presents so I can't show them yet. So with no art to share I will have to talk about something else.

A little while ago I got my copy of this in the mail. It been out for some time but I wasn't that pressed to buy it. Although I love Danny Gregory and have his other books and I knew it would be wonderful I resisted.

I was thinking oh its like 1000 Artist Journal Pages so I don't need another book like that. I mean I love that book but I don't need two of them.  Well I discovered how wrong I was, the book is wonderful and so different from the journal pages book. I think one review said its like looking into the mind of an artist and that is what its like. You get to spend several pages with each artist, look into their sketchbooks and see their processes. I have barely delved into all the varied artists in the book and I am loving it. I highly recommend the book for all of you or any artist on your gift list.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

A Christmas Pennant Tutorial

I decided to make a pennant banner for the Holidays.  So I made a tutorial on it just for you.

First you need some pennant pieces. I started with these chipboard ones.

Then I grabbed a cereal box and made a template so I could make more. The base is 4.0 inches wide and the side to the point is 6" but you could make them any size you want.

I traced the pattern on to scrapbook papers and cut them out.

Then I needed to punch holes so I pulled out my crop a dile and punched all the holes. The holes are 1/4"inch from the top and side edges. You can use a regular hole punch if that is what you have.

Then take a glue stick and glue your papers to the chipboard.

You need to choose a word that you want to use.  I chose Merry Christmas but you could do Happy Holidays or Celebrate or Peace or Joy.  I cut my letters out with my Cricut but you could use chipboards letters too.  I ended up cutting all sorts of colors out but only the black seemed to show up well on all the different colored papers.

Then you will need some ribbon to string the pennant pieces together.  I chose a 1/8 in craft ribbon.

Now string the ribbon through all the holes leaving some extra on each end for tying on.

Then all you need to do is hang it somewhere pretty. If you decide to make your own please send me the link I'd love to see your creations.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Paper scraps everywhere

image from the net

I went in the studio today to look for my Christmas scrapbook paper for a new project and it turned into an overhaul.  I seem to have several drawers full of scraps. yikes!  So I spent the next hour tackling one of the drawers, putting all the scraps in color piles. Now how to store them.  If I had a big space with lots of drawers I guess I could put each color in a different drawer.  So far I have red, pink, blue, green, purple, yellow, orange, brown, black and white.  Now that is 10 drawers, no I don't have that much space.  As a temporary measure I put them in folders and then in 2 drawers.

So my question to all of you out there.  How do store your paper scraps?

I thought I'd play with black and white images, no special meaning or anything with this page other than reading books does let you travel all over the world. I love the image of the little girl reading to her dog. So maybe it has meaning to me after all.

A little beauty for you, she was found art and I painted her over a watercolor crayon background.  The flowers are cut out from old walpaper.

After a long search I finally found one of these,

so that I can make these tags at the Artistic Life.  Shona Cole has the most fun little projects on Wednesdays. You would think that a simple square punch would be an easy thing to find.  Of course now I am punching inchies out of everything....  I love how new tools can lead to all sorts of new ideas and just plain fun.

Have you had any fun today, turn off the computer and go to your studio and play!

Monday, December 6, 2010

The Wild Side

The creative challenge that I am running at queen of creativity castle revolves around the word wild. I decided to explore the idea in my journal. I started out with black gesso and then added the zebra which left very little space for anything else so I decided to do the facing page as well. I had cut the edges of both pages previously. I started with some folk art paint that looked like the savannah in east Africa to me. I added some oil pastels in green to represent the grasses. Then I added several more wild animals. With the addition of some words I considered it done.

At first I had no idea how I was going to explore this word but then I just let go and let it happen with no conceived notion of what it had to be. For some reason that seems to be a lesson I need to learn over and over again. Maybe art is all about letting go after all.

If you'd like to join in this challenge come over to my site on ning.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Nano Burnout

I seem to be suffering from nano burnout, don't feel like doing a thing. I have managed a couple art journal pages in the last few days.

This was a background I did not like, I kept layering paint and then tissue paper and it became so textured all I could think of adding was a little collage. Once I let go I all the elements just flowed together. I love it when that happens. The leaves are from a freebie of Alisa Burke's.

I do like putting images down and painting around them. This sat for a week then I just added some stamps. It doesn't photograph too well.

In this background I was trying out a new paisley stamp I bought recently. The background was made with watercolor crayons, the woman with crayons and acrylics. She was found in the background.

I love this little sweet spot. These pages were all done in my altered book journal.

We are still in a winter wonderland, more snow arrived. Yesterday the snowplow left a mountain in our driveway again. I went to go out and couldn't, it was annoying to say the least. I am already so sick of winter and its only just begun. The only good thing is that the road should be easily passable now.  Before I had to drive 5 miles an hour to get through it all.

This morning I am listening to this. Its Maggie Sansone's cd Dancing upon the Shore. It has to be one of my favorite Celtic CD's. She plays the hammered dulcimer and the melodies are so soothing on a dark winter day or any other too.

Wishing you all a few soothing moments in your day.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

I reached 50,000 words at 4:30 on Sunday November 28th. Whew I am tired.  I think I will go have a nap now.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

After the blizzard

The blizzard is over with so now the cleanup begins.  Sarah is up in Butte so she is missing all the fun. I know she wants to see lots of pictures so here they are.

This is right out my back door

Here is Flynn right out our front door.

This shows the drift in the front yard.

Here is the driveway.

and here is why we can't get out of the driveway.

Another shot of what the snowplow left behind.

Dave is out here with snowblower working on that monster.

Look at Flynns face, he looks like a raccoon. He got that from the spray from the snowblower.  He likes to be out there helping, but I made him come inside for a little while. I had to wipe his face off to get that fine crystal snow off of him. It may take all day but at least we will be able to get out and go to town.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

I am Wellness

This is my last painting for Tam's class. I did an angel for good health.  My new mantra is I am wellness. I wanted green for the background because it is the color of healing but never liked the shade till the end.  The background was a real pain but I finally like it. This was a perfect example of never giving up. Keep working through your processes and eventually you will come out the other side. This piece using watercolor crayon and both types of golden acrylics, stamping and charcoal. I put spirals on her hands because its a personal symbol for me.

This class was a lot of fun. It made me rethink how we can use our art for our own healing and other stuff in our lives. I highly recommend it.

Blizzard 2010

I've got a mug a hot cider in my hands and the snow is blowing like a banshee outside.  Dave found some really good cider at the store so I have warmed it and threw in a cinnamon stick for flavor.  It tastes really yummy.

I went outside to rescue the prayer flags that had come down.  This is the back yard.  The wind isn't so bad in the back.

This is our driveway, that is about 4 ft of snow piled up. We won't be going anywhere any time soon.

I tried taking a pic of me by the snow bank but as the wind was blowing so hard I couldnt keep my eyes open and my hands were getting cold too.

Flynn didn't mind the weather as long as I made a trail for him. The cats are bundled indoor except for Boromir who didn't want to come in. She is holed up in the garage probably sitting on some wool fleece keeping warm. I will check on her later. The sheep are all nestled in the barn so all is well in my world.  How about yours?

Update:  Boromir the little grey kitty is  inside now....