Monday, January 30, 2012

A lurking Muse

For many years even as a small child I always played with sketches. I struggled and struggled, gave up, tried again then gave up and this went on for well til now.  I remember one time seeing the TV Guide and they had those sketches you were to attempt to draw, send it in and they would basically tell you if you had potential. Well there was this dog and I sketched it and sent it in...and...I got a reply back saying I did have potential but that was that. I never went any further with it and being a child you never keep  things for encouragement late in life. And I never took an art class in high school or years later...hmmmm
Since getting my wireless I have been visiting YouTube quite a bit and I see some very good and creative people out there. I think my problem, and many of us say to ourselves negative things, which prevent ourselves from going any further with whatever we are tackling. I always love a challenge and as I get older I seem to be less " afraid" and I have a more I don't care what anyone else thinks attitude....good or bad that is the way I have become. So.... recently I dug out my sketchbook that I purchased months ago. I  just started with eyes first, I always think eyes are truly the window to the soul and I am becoming quite, well, good at them. But, you can't just draw eyes and that be have to do a face...yikes...did I say that??? a face??? the whole thing??? well it was rather late, after midnight, and was having a bit of a time getting to sleep so I got out a regular HB pencil and my sketchbook and started just randomly drawing, letting go of negative thoughts, forgetting the challenges of the past and just being free with the pencil and this is the sketch I finished in about an hour or less. I was actually shocked that it looked as good as it does. Even the next morning when I showed hubs he asked me " Did you draw that"? you didn't draw that did you? I said who else would be in bed drawing at that time of night (he fell asleep on the couch btw). So I realize I have a huge way to go, but, I must say for my very first attempt at a face and not really knowing what was going to turn out, I have to say, I think I did pretty good. I won't win any awards and I don't plan on doing any portraits of anyone but they say the face or human body is the hardest thing to draw. I think I had a little divine intervention as well because I felt so free and so uninhibited.
So here are 3 sketches for you to look at...if you don't mind and tell me honestly what you think? I now look at them and see things I could do different but I wont' change them as these are definitely depicting a mood I had set for myself.
Thanks for taking a look and I can't wait to show my mixed media faces I have been working on, they are whimsical and I am mastering the watercolours with white acrylic paint. I am now so excited to be able to do some of these faces that are popping up everywhere around the Internet.

Charcoal eye, I love charcoal but it takes a bit getting used to.....
 Pencil sketch first face , I have a lot of work to do on face shape as I look on here.....but at least you can tell it is a person. LOL
 2nd pencil sketch, not sure what is going on here, is the hair too big or the face too wide

Sunday, January 29, 2012

ATC Technique Book

Hi everyone, winter has finally reared it's ugly head. Once again we had freezing rain then turned to snow. The ground is white now and more to come.

I have been doing a few arty things but this is not what this post is about.

I want to guide you over to Jenxo's blog and read her post about the ATC Technique book.
A few years ago Jenxo and I moderated a beginner ATC group and Jenxo came up with the idea to make a little book of techniques. People would sign up and say which technique they would do with a description on the back as to how to do that technique. It was a huge hit. If there was 10 of us you make 10 of the one technique you signed up to do.
We sent our ATC's to Jenxo, she made the front and back covers with techniques of course then sent everyone a book back with the ball chain and holes in the book. I am not sure she is planning on doing that part for any newcomers to this but anyways I am directing you over to her post and you can read all about it there. It is nice to have techniques on hand when you need some inspiration or are stuck in your muse, which happens to all of us at one point or another.
Jenxo has started up the idea to add to the existing books we have or you can sign up and start one of your own. Depending on how many sign up you will get that number back.
So go read, sign up, and you will be so surprised at how many techniques are out there.
Til next time....stay crafty

Monday, January 23, 2012

Calendar pages complete and a Mixed bag of goods

As you all know I was doing calendar pages along with Roni over at her blog Ink stains with Roni. I have completed all of them now and want to show you the rest of them. I enjoyed making this project, I learned some new things, made myself something for a change and got a much needed calendar. Although this one I won't be able to write notes on it for myself but I can enjoy it just the same.

Although August isn't usually fall colours yet but being in Canada we actually see subtle changes coming in late July. 

August- Melted Crayons...I liked this technique
 September- Stamped Gesso
 October- Distressed Glue
 November-Molten Pigments: ie I didn't have pigment powders so I scraped chalks into my glue
 December-Sparkle Mosaic Stamping: I didn't have scrap rubber so I used fun foam
 So there you have it....I am really pleased for the most part. I have decided to start an Art technique Journal and put scraps of paper that have been clipped from each calendar page and write down the technique. That way when I want to do something again I have it handy. Another goal for this year.

And....more stuff, are you bored yet???
Over at Helga's blog My Artistic Life, Helga gives a tutorial on how she painted a background which I applied to my little hearts.  Here are a couple little Valentines to show you how I made mine. I used chip board off the back of a 12x12 paper pack. I cut out hearts, punched holes at the top, painted them using the following colours...Delta Apple Green to splatter, Americana Baby Pink, Americana Canyon Orange and Delta Cardinal. I pounced instead of brushed on my colours. First  I gave my chipboard hearts a coat of gesso. I punched an inchie punch out of scrap and used the window to draw it on the heart and cut it out before I painted, I Painted the heart back and front. Use heat gun to speed up drying. Then I print and cut images a bit larger to fit over the window on my heart. I then added grommets to my heart to put ribbon through. Covered the back of the heart with a smaller shaped heart from designer paper with pinking shears so I can add To and From. Aren't they the cutest? I am not usually into Valentines but for some reason this triggered it....thanks Helga for some inspiration.
 Click on the images to get a good close up of the colours, they blended so nicely with the pouncing I did.

 And....there's more....wake up.....
These are some bamboo tiles I got from a kit I ordered a while back from Artchix Studio. The kit contained a sheet of images, a few bamboo tiles. I won a challenge on Facebook back late summer so I finally ordered a few things and used my coupon. I am addicted to these suckers. I posted on FB I was looking for place mats and lo and behold my Mum found me some and I was able to locate some locally but I will wait till Mum's arrive before I set out for more. There are 130 in one place mat. They come in black, natural and a walnut colour. wooohooo, I love these. My dictionary pages are getting cut up as I am cutting words out of it and adding to some. I used ball chain to hang them and I experimented and coloured one ball chain with alcohol ink and I was amazed at how wonderful it turned out.
I must thank Jenxo who sent me one of these
 along with a swap we had over Christmas, it sparked  ideas. I have received many comments on it and I plan to sell these in the fall. They are so addicting and you could put many things on these besides images. Stay tuned as I have so many ideas for these I can't stop....

And last but not least some wooden puzzle piece magnets. I loved that heart colour I did a couple puzzle pieces. Added some images I had on the computer, found a few quotes online and added some either bling or Stickles for interest.

Thank you for bearing with me during this long post.
It is raining here when it should be snowing so we are on high flood alert in the basement.
Til next time, stay crafty my friends.

Monday, January 16, 2012

More Calendars, an ATC and Hearty goodness

I have had these few calendars done since late last week but with Blogger acting up and things going on around here I am only getting to these now. The days are flying by so my calendar will be put to good use very shortly.
Here are the following months......
May-Colorized bleach....I think this is my fav technique so far.....

June....Gradient Stamping with a Twist
July...... Bubble Wrap Emboss Resist
August Calendar will be coming soon, I needed to buy Crayons for that one..
Remember to take a peek over at Ink Stains with Roni for all of her techniques. You can find all the Months on her Right side bar. This is a lot of fun.

And here is a challenge for Bella Creations in the OhLaLa group.
Heather gave us a Gecko Gal Bingo card image only to work with.
Here I did some Gimp (Image Manipulation), added the B/W girl image and coloured her, added butterfly wings, then replaced the O in Bingo with a Gimp brush.
I inked the edges with Jumbo Java Ink by Tsenko then pleated some pink ribbon and seam binding together, added my little safety pin and charms. Overall this was a good challenge for me to use Gimp and get more practise. I am coming along but I am no where near a Graphic Artist....yet...

One more little ditty.....
On Artchix, Helga gave a little tutorial for painting hearts using their Eco Shapes. I didn't have any on hand so I cut my own hearts out, made an inchie window, painted with similar colours that Helga used. I think they turned out pretty spiffy. I love the slip slap of paint and blending right on the surface. Of course I used a good scruffy brush for this then I used a toothbrush to splatter on the Apple Green. Love the combos here.
Thank you for dropping by.
I can't remember if I posted but the car is fixed, many dollars later but I am up and running.
It was covered in ice from last weeks ice storm but it is OK now and I am a Happy Camper.
Keep arty my friends.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

We have a Winner......

Drum Roll please.........the Winner of my 300th Blog Post Giveaway is...... Sandi
Congratulations Sandi. I tried to send you a private message but Blogger is acting up so if I can't contact you by this evening I will do so tomorrow.
I will need your mailing address to send out the Prize Package.
Thank you everyone, I wish I could give you all a prize but recent car events have made that impossible.
With big (Hugs) to everyone.

Delay in Picking Winner

Hi Everyone,
just hoping this post goes through.
I have tried for 2 days to collect names for the Giveaway  and unable to load the page. Not sure if it is Blogger or just high traffic on the web.
Please be patient and I will announce the winner either tonight or tomorrow.
Good luck everyone.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

One more day for the Giveaway

Last chance to enter my 300th Blog post Giveaway.
Click on the link to take you there for details. The pile is growing and you will not be disappointed.
Winner will be picked Sunday January 15th.
Remember you do not have to become a follower ....but if you do, it is another added bonus.
Good luck....

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Art by Wendy Giveaway

I recently met a "new" Blogger and her name is Wendy. Wendy does some incredible painting and is celebrating her first giveaway here.
Here is a pic of what you have a chance to win. Check her out, say hello and maybe become a follower.
Here is a peek at what she is offering as a huh? and she even posted a tutorial on these little gems. Might have to make me some one day.....cute cute cute.


Monday, January 9, 2012

Ink Stains with Roni Calendar

I told you in my post 2 posts ago I was doing the 2012 Calendar with Ink Stains with Roni and wow, I am having fun.
Over the weekend I got all caught up, Roni is posting a calendar each day with a technique background. If you wander over to her blog you can follow along, make a calendar for yourself or just use the techniques in your artwork. Some of these are new to me and some are not, but, as you may know me, I do with what I have on hand and may even throw in my own version. Roni has all the month techniques posted on her right sidebar to find the month that has been done. I will wander over after I post to see what  the month of May  is all about.
I already showed you my January calendar here...(scroll down to the last picture for January), and. here are the the months up to April.....

February is called Floating Starts technique

 March is Wax Paper Die Cut but I cut my own shamrocks by hand, I don't have a die cut. This was tricky....argh
 And April is Reverse Grid Stamping Technique

I have been using up borders I punched out from other projects, some mini images that I had printed off, I am digging out supplies I have stashed away and I get a calendar out of it. How fun is that????
Lesley is a happy Camper.
Stay tuned for more months to come and don't forget my Giveaway

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Help Me Celebrate 300 Posts....

I cannot believe I have reached this milestone and it is all because of YOU.
I started this blog because I wanted to share what I did with like minded people and of course meeting new people is something I have really enjoyed.
So here is to my 300th Post and to celebrate a little Giveaway.
As you know there is always rules for giveaways but you don't have to do any of these except leave me a comment.
I first have to tell you I redid my Giveaway Banner to include the link directly to this 300th post in case I post other things before the draw so if you have already posted this on your blog, please remove it and snag the new one with the direct link.
Rules because hey we need a few.....
1. Leave a comment
2. For an extra bonus place my Giveaway button on your blog
3. Post about my giveaway and leave me a comment so I know you posted about it and you will get a third chance
4. If you are not a follower and become one you get another chance, I would really like to reach 200 followers this year so that would make me really happy.
5. If you  know or remember my Cat's name you get another added chance to win.
And here is what you will receive, what you see is not necessarily what you get because the pile is already growing. There is even a little baggie you can't see with bonus items in it.

Papers, one of my key chains with ring will be provided, one of my shabby Angel hangers, the pic does not do this justice, sorry again I am no photographer. Burnt and painted glue butterflies, altered clothespins with butterflies to put on packages, give bags ie you can clip your birthday card to a package so it is all in one place!!!!, Artchix images, a couple mini dominoes so you can alter them yourself, some wood jewelery items from Artchix, apply an image and attach to a chain or your artwork.
 Here is a closeup of these altered Clothespins, I gessoed the pins then applied washi papers to them then added the butterflies. So addicting and they really transform those brown boring pins. New Addiction
 The picture does not do this any justice. I got this image free on Fripperies and Butterflies. I have just recently made a few of these little ATC sized fabric hangers. I added some vintage lace, (thanks Mum) satin ribbon adorned with a brad pegs removed with lovely pearls. I made the hanger and painted these mini clothes pins. I made a few of these at Christmas and they were a real hit. (Thanks Nancy for the inspiration)
 And of course my Key fob made from counter top laminate samples (thanks Home Depot and Loews) LOL
The ring will be provided for you to attach, it is easier to send separate for shipping.
 And I was so excited to do a mini altered canvas with an Artchix mermaid image, the verse came with the images, shells from a swap and I added the crinkly ribbon and some micro beads, and.....I also made the dangly bead hangy thing on the bottom. Love how these turned out.
So there you have it. Like I said I am adding more as I clean up around my kitchen table studio and bins under the bed and stashes all around. LOL
Thank you to all who have commented and have become my blogger friends. Where would I be without you...probably not blogging.
Good luck, you have til January 14th to comment. I will pick the winner on Sunday.
Remember if you do not have a blog I will need to get in touch with you so please leave me your email address or some way to contact you.
Thank you so much Everyone!!!!!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Giveaway Preview and my new Calendar

Today I am posting at 299 so that means I am getting ready for my big 300th post giveaway.
I will be showing you a sneak peek of 2 items that will be included in the prize package.  I decided I needed to destash a bit and of course I love to make things to give away so here is a slight preview.
I won't go into a lot of details in what these are, you may know as soon as you see them, 1 item I featured during the holidays and they were a hit so I decided to make a few new themed ones. And I am on Pinterest and found a neat idea and sort of got addicted to making some of these with my burnt glue butterflies and some shrink plastic charms I recently made. I am really liking making charms of late, not just shrink plastic but with beads and other items. Fun to add your own embellies especially with the stuff you have on hand. Believe me I really have more stuff and not sure how I managed so much but I know some of it comes from the lovely people I have traded with over the years. So much fun getting things from other places.
So enough is the sneak peek and stay tuned for the 300th post when I will give you the rules...and we have to have rules. If you would like or be so kind to add the button on the side bar to your blog you may just get another added chance to win.

 And over at Ink Stains with Roni, Roni is having her 3rd Annual Calendar challenge. Well not so much a challenge but posting techniques for backgrounds and making a calendar for the New Year.
So this year I decided since I only have  1 calendar  for this year I would join in and what better way to learn some new things and use my art supplies I have on hand. If you want to check the techniques out go to the link I have provided and follow along. Roni is already on April, my goodness the time sure flies when you are creating.
I have to show you my January calendar, I made the template a bit smaller (you can get it over on Roni's blog)  because I will probably have it here in the computer room and I don't want a huge one. All the techniques are wonderfully demonstrated with clear instructions. This technique is painted tin foil, embossed in the CB. Then I added Twinkling H20's because I don't have any glimmer mists but I will be making my own this year. I just need good spray bottles. After my Twinkling's dried I wasn't really sure I liked it so I did have some Radiant Rain in gold and when I added that the colours and embossing just really popped. I added Delta Snow Tex for snow then when it was still wet I added Diamond Dust to it. Then I finished embellishing it. I have Feb and March just about done. Things are drying so I will feature them in a separate post from my 300th Giveaway post. Click on the image to see the wonderful colours and details.

Thanks for dropping by and stay tuned for my next 300th post.

Monday, January 2, 2012

New Year, New Beginnings, New Adventures

Hi all, well another holiday has come and gone and a new year has begun.

Today I found out my friend Becky started up a blog, so I would like you to venture on over to Country Lane Folkart to say hello and wish her well. Becky is a wonderful Folk Artist I have known a few years now and we have met face to face a couple of times. I met Becky when I first started on the computer and had internet, on a painting board. Becky was always answering questions and we fast became friends. Becky has a wonderful website called....Country Lane Folkart and she is on Facebook and has an Etsy shop. If you follow the link to her blog you can find out more about Becky and her art.
Welcome to blog land Becky, good luck and I know you will find it a truly fun and great way to meet new like minded people.

And my new adventure....I follow Ink Stains with Roni and Roni is starting up her 3rd Annual Calendar challenge. Roni has all the details on her blog and is providing templates. Roni will be providing techniques to use for the backgrounds and she even has links to a calendar to put on the templates and some image sites.
So if you need a calendar for 2012 and want to learn some new techniques wander over to Ink Stains with Roni and check it out.

And the continuing saga with my car....I will be taking it to a GM dealership in town and they are going to scope it and hopefully find the dead short. Surely the maker of my vehicle can find out what is going on. Hopefully they won't have it for 2 weeks on end like another mechanic  I won't mention. Wish me luck.
2012 is going to be a great year....I can feel it already.
Cheers everyone.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Wishing you all.....

May the New Year bring you good health, prosperity, friendships and joy.
Today hubby and I celebrate 23 years as a couple. My how time does fly...
Stay tuned for a little upcoming 300th post celebration.
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