Sunday, October 30, 2016

Autumn Card

A simple card for Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge - Autumn.

The background had been sitting for a while, having been made with left over paints and texture paste. I stamped the leaves and coloured them with Inktense pencils then added the script stamp.

V for Virago

I wanted to create another entry for The Craft Barn Alpha Challenge - V and found a small scrap of dictionary on my table left over from my first page The word on it - Virago. Now I had no idea what that meant - all I could see was the word 'aggressive' which didn't seem promising. But once I looked it up, the ideas came. I do like to find something out of the ordinary!

The background for this page just happens to be similar to my other 'V' page as I had put out too much purple paint at some stage and used it up through the same stencil in a couple of journals. I used images which show books about strong women and pushed it back with gesso, making sure the definitions where still visible. The circular definition is an image of a necklace and the sculpture is a bronze found outside the Casale Monferrato. I used grey Gelato to grunge up the border and added some journalling.

Out Of The Box

Once again there's lots of inspiration on the Paper Artsy Blog for their latest challenge - Squares & Grids.
I have also been enjoying watching DeeDee Catron create her art pages and this in another one inspired by her style.

I started with gesso and then a grey wash. The squares are Geli print scraps overlaid this a Viva Las Vegas stamp on tissue, cut up and stuck on. I used Golden Payne's Grey acrylic which I initially thinned and dripped but ended spreading with my fingers as I wanted it o grab around the edges of the squares. The vertical and horizontal paint lines were a happy accident. I randomly dabbed with my brush and they ended up almost looking like a woven pattern. I finished with watercolour pencil for a border, splatters, scribble and journalling with ordinary pencil.


I had been watching a video by Barb Owen on how to make a paper woven angel and thought the grid pattern created by the weaving, fitted for this challenge by Paper Artsy - Squares & Grids. I must admit, I thought I had until next week for this one - where does the time go?!
So I had to do a bit of improvising with the resources I needed as some of the things I may have used were elsewhere. Once again, this was a practice, thinking about craft activities for my class for Christmas.
I think it turned out quite well and should be achievable for 10 year olds, although they do find some of the fiddly bits a challenge.

I used Geli print scraps woven into a sheet of coloured paper, backed with scrap booking paper and then sealed on the front with matte medium, to make sure it was really secure. Even this looked great and I have enough to make several angels.

I made it slightly larger than the pattern, which turned out exactly right for the wings I had die cut from a design my son drew for me. For the face, I search for cherubs online, resized and coloured.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Addicted to Coffee

This is for the Addicted to CAS - Code Word Coffee.

I don't have too many a day, but when I do, I really like to taste the coffee!
So I thought I would use the resources around me and go with the real thing, starting with authentic coffee cup rings and some coffee grounds to use for texture.

A Flat White is my choice when I am out so that is what I chose to depict.
I added Golden Glass Bead medium to the coffee ground to give them a bit of shine.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

V is for Grandma?

The current alpha challenge over at The Craft Barn is 'V'. For me that stands for Grandma - Violet was her name and even though she left us many years ago it is nice to have a reason to dig out the old photos and create this tribute to her.
Weren't those early photos amazing?!

Monday, October 24, 2016

Think Pink - Strong Girls

Now pink is not my go to colour! I think the rebel in me says '"Don't make me choose pink just cause I'm a girl!" and "Definitely do not buy me those pink flowery tools they make for girls!"
So I had to stretch myself to go completely pink for this Simon Say Stamp Wednesday Challenge - Think Pink.
Now, the CAS-ual Fridays - Fight Like a Girl Challenge 159 sounds a bit more like me, as in, "We are girls - we are strong!" Their challenge is link to Breast Cancer Awareness Month and in respect to all those affected, I'm happy to turn pink.

This is my first set of actual Artist Trading Cards. I have enjoyed other small pieces of art such as ICADs and tags, but not really having anyone to trade ATCs with :( - I had not made sets of these before.

Although there are several layers - gift wrap, acrylic with gesso, Derwent Inktense blocks, stamping and die cuts - the outcome and sentiments are simple and hopefully effective. My favourite part is the leaves. The card stock I used was mauve so I toned it down by stamping with a small script stamp I have and really like the textured look that created.

Gift Box

As a teacher, I've always been looking for new ways to use resources, especially those things that would otherwise be thrown out. Now that I have got into mixed media, this attitude continues, and possibly grows, as I seem to be looking at everything with new eyes.
I had already been collecting a few little boxes, thinking about Christmas gifts. I'll possibly have to only buy things that will fit in the boxes I make!

This box doesn't fit any particular holiday theme but I really like the marbled effect that it has.
It stated as a cosmetic box which was covered in patterned tissue, which of course ended up a little crinkled, but I like that, and it helped the Gelatos I then applied go into the folds and create the effect. The tissue has some red flowers on it - to me pohutakawa, a bottle-brush type native of NZ. Although they are almost lost, and subtle, in the black background of the box, I used this colour as the feature of my small tag and string.

This is an entry in Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge - Treat Bag/Box

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Card - Stitched Stamp

Again working with gesso to create texture and resist and keeping it simple. This time I am trying out a new stamp which I absolutely love. The simple stitched circles are great. I have used them here together but they are individual so can be used alone.

Card - Celebrate

Having received some new dies I wanted to try them out on something simple, but colourful. I had been watching people using gesso  to create texture and resist and was pleased with how this worked on this Reeves acrylic paper. I used Gelatos to colour the background and stamped and edged with cobalt archival ink.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Die Cut - Bat & Tree

This is one of the self-drawn, self-cut designs I made while working on ideas for Paper Arty's Challenge - Die Cuts.
Initially I thought it was a bit of a failure and put it to one side. The ink I had used in the background had soaked into the paper, the tree looked a mess after I coloured it with a black Gelato and I couldn't really see it going anywhere.
Then I remember The Craft Barn challenge that needed to include a bat and thought that the dark mood could work for that. Now the challenge is called 'Pumpkin' but it does say "The only rule is there must be a bat."
I added some background stamping, darkened the borders with Stabilo ALL and ink, then mounted it in a small black journal. I finished it with borders of patterned paper and a paper scrap with texture paste stencilled onto it. As often happens, if we persevere, things work out in the end!

Die Cuts - Shadowbox

These challenges always get me thinking about what I may have tried before that fits with the theme. The current Paper Artsy Challenge is die cuts and this little box was one of the first things I made when I got my Brother Scan n Cut. I had a search and actually remembered that I found the idea from Balzer Designs.
The inside of the box is made from a Gelli print.


I then used this idea to create decorations for my Mother's 90th birthday.

Die Cuts - Heart

Well this challenge from Paper Artsy - Die Cuts has got me enthused about my Brother Scan n Cut once again. Although it sits in front of me on my craft table, it sometimes becomes so covered and surrounded by other projects, it cannot be used. But this weekend the mess was cleared away as I experimented with some designs for this challenge. It is always tricky for me working out the positive and negative space - what will be cut away and keeping what's left behind joined together and usable.

The ideas posted on the Paper Artsy blog have got me thinking as well, and although I did not use them here, I'm thinking the layered tree scene is something I will try and that snowman is a must with my class for Christmas - who cares that we don't have snow!

This first piece was inspired by DeeDee Catron's video. I had just received some of her Viva Las Vegas stamps and still wanted to use them, so changed it around a little and also used my self-drawn, self-cut embellishment. The orange stamping was made using a (very well washed!) tray that chicken came on from the supermarket - quite find I think!

Saturday, October 15, 2016

E for Equal

This post is for The Craft Barn Alpha Challenge - E

While ripping up my dictionary page for my first post for this challenge, I was looking for something else on the page to inspire me and came upon the word equal.
The background is a napkin with a very regular, equal spotted pattern, pushed back with gesso. Then came some stamping with the small equals signs.
I used the butterfly and circle to represent symmetry and the two equal sides of the image. Then the two mathematical equations were stamped onto the page, a large equals sign made with the scraps of dictionary page and the die cut people representing equality.
There was still something missing so I found and image of scales which represent equality as well as justice.

E for Ephemeral

This post is for The Craft Barn Alpha Challenge - E.

I started by covering the page with images from Ephemera's Vintage Garden, applied gesso over the top and then some stenciling. I then used other ephemera as my focal images and added some detailing with die cut flowers, shaped and pearls added.I had been experimenting with my new Jacquard Pearl Ex Powders - still figuring these out and made lots of smudgy images but thought they could still be useful and had some pieces that I though fitted here.

1-8 Hugs & Kisses from NZ

CAS-ual Fridays latest challenge is called 1-8 which means to use 8 items the same on your project. They theme is also related to sending out thoughts and positive vibes to those affected by breast cancer.
And just checking out some of the other challenges I take part in and see that Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge is Explore the World - great how the challenges can fit together! This page is perfect to enter this challenge as well.
I recently acquired a box of postage stamps from my mother, most of which are local New Zealand stamps. I thought I could incorporate these in this challenge to show how we can send out our thoughts and wishes around the world to those who are going through challenges and hard times.

I started with a background of a paper napkin which features the Pavlova dessert, which comes from NZ. This also provided me with the checkered border. I printed out a world map and added the xoxo stamp for kisses and hugs as well at two postcards with greetings stuck on them.I decided where in the world the postcards were going and drew in the lines with a fine-liner and high flow paint. This wasn't as neat as I would have liked so tried to touch it up with my Posca pen. Then the all important 8 postage stamps. Being so small, New Zealand had all but disappeared under the paint so I touched that up with the Poscas as well.

Happy with the positive, happy thoughts, and love represented here.