More Artist Trading Cards…

I haven’t been feeling too creative lately. Probably just too busy with work and life stuff, as well as working on my Round Robin art journals and taking part in The Daily Marker 30-Day Challenge for November. There just hasn’t been a lot of time to just… play.

I have, however, managed to make several sets of ATCs for various swaps and two sets just for me. Thought I’d do a quick share…

Splatter Trees
Splatter Trees

These are just simple little cards that were stamped with an image of a bare tree, then masked and splattered with different colors of Distress Inks. I also made an autumn-colored tree, but my mother stole it, heh.

Beauty in the Rain
Beauty in the Rain

These were totally inspired by a YouTube tutorial. First I took a watercolor ATC and added Shimmerz sprays to the background. Then I took another ATC and glued on some pages from a Japanese-English dictionary, then added watercolor paints on top. I then cut out raindrop shapes before gluing the two ATCs together. Bead gel was applied to give it a shiny texture and painted chipboard clouds were added. Sequins were the final touch.

Silver Shine
Silver Shine

These were made for the “metallic” category for the November 2016 ATC swap on the Scrapbook.com forums. They were created mostly by layering coordinating Prima papers and stamped with silver ink. Silvery embellishments and flowers were also added. I think they turned out rather well.

A Little Inspiration
A Little Inspiration

These were an experiment. I stamped and heat embossed three watercolor ATCs with white embossing powder. I then added Lindy’s Stamp Gang sprays and magicals. The embossed images resisted the color and the effect was so cool. I planned to keep these for myself, but the daughter of a friend liked the pink one so much, I sent it to her. ^_^

Birthday Bling
Birthday Bling

I liked the effect of the previous ATCs so much, I decided to do the same for some birthday-themed ATCs made to be sent with my swap cards for folks in the swap having birthdays this month. The purple one is my favorite.

Christmas Mini Shakers
Christmas Mini Shakers

And finally, my contribution to the Christmas-themed ATCs for the SB.com forum swap. I made mini-shakers! I used a variety of stamps, sequins and bling to create these. I’m pleased with how they turned out.

That’s all for now! Close-ups of all individual cards can be found in my SB.com gallery. My next post will probably be about my latest canvas I made which inadvertently sent me to the emergency room. 😄

Happy Thanksgiving!

 

A few art journal pages…

I warned you I’d be playing catch-up! Thought I’d share just a few pages I’d done in my art journal so far…

"Imagine"
“Imagine”

I saw a tutorial on YouTube on how to paint a galaxy using watercolors. (Just search for watercolor galaxy… lots of examples!) I thought it might be something I could do, even though I’d never painted before, so I got a cheap set of watercolor paints from Amazon and this was my first attempt at painting… and I LOVE IT. I don’t know that I could ever do it again, but I’m just amazed I could do something like this to begin with!

"Tomorrow is another day..."
“Tomorrow is another day…”

Next, I thought I’d try a sunset. While it didn’t turn out as well as my galaxy I thought, it’s not to bad. I don’t hate it at any rate. ^_^

For my third page, I wanted to play with some mermaid stamps from The Greeting Farm. My inspiration was a silly television commercial… I don’t even know what product it’s selling, but it’s got a ceramic mermaid talking on her “shellphone.” It makes me chuckle every time I see it, so I thought I’d do a page inspired by it.

"Shellphone"
“Shellphone”

The background is watercolors, then I heat embossed a wave stamp over the top. I didn’t have a die cut machine at this time, so I cut everything out by hand after I colored it in with pencils. The narwhal stamp is from the Lawn Fawn Mermaid For You set.

For my next page, I thought I’d try my hand at collage, using a Tim Holtz ephemera pack I’d picked up along the way. Girls are often not encouraged enough to go into the STEM fields, but every girl has an opportunity to be a Mighty Girl. My nod to Marie Curie.

"Be Mighty."
“Be Mighty.”

My next page was inspired by Marta of Maremi Small Art. I’d watched her “How to Break a Blank Page” tutorial on YouTube which helped me start this one off. I glued down some torn pages from a foreign language dictionary, before covering them with watercolors. I fussy cut some hearts out of scrapbook paper and colored them with gelatos, then put some white distress paint through a stencil. I drew the stitching and patches on the hearts by hand. The finished page turned out better than I’d expected.

"Forever in My Heart"
“Forever in My Heart”

Finally I decided to try my hand at watercolors again. I found another tutorial on YouTube on how to paint a simple cherry blossom scene. While my mountain didn’t turn out very well, I still like the overall result. And I can only get better with practice!

"Travel"
“Travel”

I’ll upload some more pages soon!

Cheers!

I had uploaded a card I made for my best friend’s birthday to my gallery on Scrapbook.com, when someone asked if I had a video of how I made it. I’m not in a position to make videos at the moment (no work space… I create on my bed right now), but I’m hoping to change that in the future when we move at the beginning of next year and I’ll have my own craft/hobby room. But it was simple enough to make so I thought I’d write out how I did it…

Cheers!
Cheers!

I started with the Simon Says Stamp set “Adult Beverages.” I was taking my bestie on a cruise for her birthday, and the one thing she really wanted to do (besides swim with dolphins) was to drink something fruity with an umbrella in it. That was the inspiration behind the card.

I used my MISTI to line up the drink stamps on my card stock. Then I added the “extras” — the umbrella, straw and fruit slice, then the sentiment (which is from a coordinating stamp set).

As far as I know there’s not a die set to go with these stamps, so I got out my trusty exacto knife and carefully cut out the center of the glasses. I used a black distress marker to color the edges of the cuts, then taped down a piece of acetate on the back. I cut foam tape into thin strips and placed them all around the edges of the cut outs on the back side, on top of the acetate. I only did one layer though, and afterwards, I wish I had done two, because it didn’t leave a whole lot of room for the sequins to move.

I brushed the acetate with a powder tool to get rid of static, then filled in the wells made by the foam tape with sequins and beads. (For the martini glass, I filled with a white sequin mix, but put in one olive green sequin with a smaller red sequin glued on top for the olive.) Then I attached another piece of white cardstock to the back. After that, I just glued the shaker to a card base and glued on some sequins to the front!

I finally have a die cut machine, so I’m eager to start making more cards in the future!

Hocus Pocus

YouTube has been very bad for my bank account. I watch amazing people put together amazing works of art… then I run out and order the materials they used so I can try, too. This is how I’ve come to dabble in mixed media.

It all started when I stumbled upon video tutorial Marta Lapkowska. She made it look so easy, I actually thought to myself, “I could do that!” Now, I’ve never been artistic. I can’t draw. I can barely color. I’ve had no training. I can cross stitch, but that’s about it. But as I watched these videos, a whole new world of ideas opened up in my head. This led me to create my first mixed media project.

"Hocus Pocus"
“Hocus Pocus”

I love Halloween. It is my most favorite holiday. I love spooky, scary, paranormal things. I love magic. And I fell in love with Graphic 45’s paper set, “Rare Oddities.” I bought some paper and embellishments for my… I don’t even know what to call this… shadowbox? Anyway, I took the wooden tray that held some resin Prima embellishments and spray-painted it grey (because I didn’t have black). I stamped and colored the background papers before gluing them into the boxes, then went to town with embellishments.

Left side...
Left side…

It’s hard to tell in the photos, but the embellishments were attached with pop dots, giving it some dimension. I added some beads to a little glass cork jar and stained some cheesecloth for an old curtain effect.

Right side...
Right side…

I used some pieces from a Halloween ephemera pack by Creative Imaginations, then blinged the whole thing up with flowers, gems and Stickles.

My Scrapbook.com gallery has a list of most of the products I used.

“Hocus Pocus” was actually meant to just be a practice piece for a larger Halloween shadowbox I want to do in the future. But I’m really pleased with how it came out!

A major undertaking…

For my third quilling piece, I decided to go big or go home with a totally outrageous, blinged out quilling project. I’d had several ideas in mind, but I really wanted to do a fairy on a crescent moon after being inspired by some artwork I’d found on the internet. I downloaded a basic crescent moon shape to use as an outline. Then I found some clipart of a fairy to use as well, since I had not yet discovered chipboard embellishments. Putting the two images together, I traced the basic shape onto a piece of white cardstock I’d spritzed with purple and blue Color Bloom spray, then went to work making flowers.

"Dream"
“Dream”

This piece took about two weeks to complete, though I didn’t work on it every day.

The large blue flower took all day to make, using the beehive technique.
The large blue flower took all day to make, using the beehive technique.

I didn’t really have a “design” for the flowers in mind, other than the large blue flower, so I would just make flowers in random shapes and sizes using different shades of blues and purples and white.

Most of the flowers I made, but I added a few pre-made flowers in smaller spots.
Most of the flowers I made, but I added a few pre-made flowers in smaller spots.

When I had what I thought was enough flowers, I started arranging them on a piece of wax paper on top of the moon outline, to see where I wanted to put them and to keep the moon’s shape. After making even more flowers and small pieces to fill in some gaps, I started gluing them onto the cardstock.

A lot of bling went into this piece
A lot of bling went into this piece.

I had planned to cut the fairy out of black cardstock, but by the time I had cut her out of paper, my hands were killing me. Since she looked alright printed on regular paper, I just glued her down. I made her wings out of scrapbook paper and vellum, using McGill’s Paper Blossom Tool Kit to make them stand up off the page. I added a few self-adhesive gems and went to town with Stickles to create the chains.

I was super pleased with the way it turned out, especially since it was only the third quilling piece I had attempted. I hope to do more like this someday.

Competition entries for TonnerCon

I’m a doll collector. Have been since I stopped playing with them and started displaying them on various shelves. Several years ago, I made the jump from Barbie collector to larger fashion dolls and Asian ball jointed dolls. One of my favorite companies is the Tonner Doll Company. I have… an embarrassing number of Tonner/Wilde Imagination dolls. But they’re so pretty!

A few years ago, I started attending the Tonner Doll convention, usually held twice a year in various cities around the country. It’s a great way to spend 3-4 days, with people who “get” your brand of crazy love for plastic and resin dolls. During the convention, there is always a competition room. Attendees are sent a list of competition categories a couple of months before so they can work on their creations. I don’t participate much, because I couldn’t sew my way out of a paper bag. But sometimes there are categories that aren’t sewing-related, and I can participate.

This year’s TonnerCon, held June 2-4, 2016, in Columbus, OH, which was the weekend of my 40th birthday. There were two competition categories I was interested in… creating a dress/outfit entirely out of paper and the craft category, which was for any handicraft other than sewing. Score!

My paper dress, which I modeled on Tonner’s Victorian Basic Cami doll, was made of yellow tissue paper and over 30 handmade flowers, utilizing over 100 punched flower shapes. Even though I didn’t place in this category, I had a lot of fun putting it together.

"Tiptoeing Through the Violets"
“Tiptoeing Through the Violets”

I’d entered the craft category at a previous convention, with a cross stitch piece of one of the Wilde Imagination dolls. As this year was celebrating the Tonner Doll Company’s 25th anniversary, I wanted to do something to acknowledge what an amazing company Tonner is. Their motto is “Believe in the power of play,” and as I had recently taken up quilling, this was what I came up with, my second-ever quilling piece…

"Believe in the Power of Play"
“Believe in the Power of Play”

I won third place for this! And the Tonner Doll staff loved it! One of the other attendees liked it so much, she wanted to buy it from me. But as it was my birthday, I decided to give it to her. I hope she enjoys it! ❤

A new venture…

I’ve always wanted to be creative, to create pretty things or write spell-binding stories. But I’ve never felt good enough or smart enough or creative enough to do much beyond cross stitching and fanfiction. But now that I’m older, I say screw it. I don’t have to create masterpieces. I don’t even have to create things other people will like. I just have to make something I like and have fun doing it.

And I guess, if I like it enough, I’ll post it here and on my various social media feeds.

My first big “try something new” test came in April ’16, when I decided to try my hand at quilling after watching some tutorials online. I bought a starter kit and some paper and this was my first attempt at quilling art…

"Quilling Debut"
“Quilling Debut”

I had wanted to use soft pinks and greens for the entire piece only I didn’t have enough of the colors I wanted in the starter kit, so I had to utilize more brighter colors (and a little bit of purple when I ran completely out of pink).

Is it perfect? No. But it was basically a practice piece, to give me an idea on how to create different shapes out of rolled up strips of paper.

I’ve done a few more projects since then, and I’ll post them here when I have a chance…